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May 28, 2021

Airborne 05.28.21: HondaJet Elite S, Air Race Derby, Autonomous King Air

Also: Boeing Fine, Pilot Records Database, Next CAP National Commander, Mexican Safety Rating
Honda Aircraft Company has unveiled a new and upgraded aircraft, the "HondaJet Elite S," at a virtual product launch event themed "Innovation Continues: Elite S." The HondaJet Elite S features several upgrades that expand operational capability and improve flight operation. With an increased maximum takeoff weight of 200 lbs., customers can now fly up to 120 nm further at a higher payload, or take an additional passenger during their typical mission. Additionally, the new avionics features of FAA DataComm and ACARS replace traditional voice commands with text-based messaging to improve the clarity and efficiency of communications. Combined wi

Merlin Labs Raises $$$, Working To Build Autonomous King Air Fleet

Signs Deal With Dynamic Aviation, Owner Of Large Private Fleet Of King Airs

Merlin Labs has raised $25 million in funding from GV (formerly Google Ventures) and First Round Capital in order to pursue a 55-aircraft partnership with Dynamic Aviation, and their King Air fleet. Merlin is reportedly building a certifiable autonomy system for complex fixed-wing aircraft. The company claims to have demonstrated hundreds of autonomous missions on multiple aircraft types, including complex twin turboprop aircraft. Its autonomy platform is aircraft-agnostic, focuses on on-board autonomy rather than remote piloting, and is destined for a wide variety of public- and private-sector aircraft.

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EAA Wants DoD and DoT To Pay Attention To GA

Joins Request for Industry Representation in Special Use Airspace Implementation

EAA has co-signed a letter sent to the Department of Defense and Department of Transportation requesting that industry participation be included in the process of deploying real-time special use airspace data in compliance with Section 1085 of the National Defense Authorization Act. In the measure, Congress directed those agencies create a process that would provide pilots real-time access to information on whether designated special-use airspace areas are open and/or have government operations occurring. Access to that information enhances pilot safety and decision-making and can provide opportunities for more direct routing by permitting flight through those areas w

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Adding Insult To Injury: Boeing to Pay at Least $17M to FAA

Required To Settle Enforcement Cases on 737 -- Will Also, "Undertake Multiple Corrective Actions"

Boeing will pay at least $17 million in penalties and undertake multiple corrective actions with its production under a settlement agreement with the FAA. The FAA found that the Chicago-based manufacturer installed equipment on 759 Boeing 737 MAX and NG aircraft containing sensors that were not approved for that equipment; submitted approximately 178 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft for airworthiness certification when the aircraft potentially had nonconforming slat tracks installed; and improperly marked those slat tracks.

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RAA Applauds Pilot Records Database Final Rule

Improves Access To Important Information About Training And Qualifications History

Following the publication of the Pilot Records Database Final Rule, Regional Airline Association (RAA) President and CEO Faye Malarkey Black offered the following statement: "RAA applauds the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) and Department of Transportation (DOT) for publishing the Pilot Records Database (PRD). This electronic system, designed to share pilot records among air carriers and other operators, will materially enhance aviation safety by providing more complete information in the hiring process. Such a system, managed by the federal government, is long overdue..."

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Airborne 05.24.21: Aerion ShutDown, LSA Expansion Update, Virgin Galactic

Also: GAMA 1Q/2021 Sales, 2021 ARC Air Derby, EUROCONTROL Forecast, Canada Issues NOTAM

Aerion... one of a very few companies currently attempting to build the next generation of supersonic aircraft, this time for the BizJet market, has announced that it is shutting down. The ambitious program to build the AS2 supersonic aircraft has failed to attract sufficient investment and is done before they even got a prototype in the air. The company has been quoted as stating, "The AS2 supersonic business jet program meets all market, technical, regulatory and sustainability requirements, and the market for a ne

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Airborne-Flight Training 05.13.21: Sporty’s Award, Beech Training, Young Eagles

Also: H145 Sim, Flight Path Museum, Van’s Transition Training, CAP SD Learns sUAS Search

While under quarantine in a small New York City apartment during the pandemic, Jake Phillips returned to his childhood dream of becoming a pilot as an escape from the isolation and enrolled in Sporty’s online Learn to Fly Course. After leaving New York for Chester Springs, PA, Phillips took the next step in fulfilling his dream by taking his first flight lesson. As he nears his first solo, Phillips received a financial boost by earning a $2,500 scholarship awarded through his membership in Sporty’s

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NTSB Prelim: Beech B24R

Efforts To Restore Full Power Were Not Successful And He Executed A Forced Landing To An Interstate Highway

On May 13, 2021, at 1117 central daylight time, a Beech B24R airplane, N9199S, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near New Lenox, Illinois. The pilot and 2 passengers were seriously injured, and 1 passenger sustained minor injuries. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast data revealed the airplane departed from runway 2 at Lewis University Airport (LOT) at 1111. After takeoff, the pilot proceeded on a southeast course. The final data point was recorded at 1117.

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AD: Carson Helicopters; Croman Corp; Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation; Siller Heli

AD 2021-10-16 Requires Tracking Hours Time-In-Service (TIS)

The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for all Carson Helicopters, Inc., Model S-61L and SH-3H helicopters; Croman Corporation Model SH-3H helicopters; Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation Model S-61A, S-61D, S-61E, and S-61V helicopters; and Siller Helicopters Model CH-3E and SH-3A helicopters. This AD was prompted by an accident. This AD requires tracking hours time-in-service (TIS) and external lift cycles (lift cycles) for certain main gearbox left and right input freewheel unit (IFWU) assemblies. This AD also requires determining the type of IFWU assembly installed and depending on the results, calculating the moving average, repetitive inspections, recording certain informa

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AD: De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited

AD 2021-10-13 Prompted By A Report Indicating That Several Failure Modes Of The NWS System May Cause Loss Of Feedback

The FAA is superseding Airworthiness Directive (AD) 2015-17-08, which applied to certain Bombardier, Inc. Model DHC-8-400 series airplanes. AD 2015-17-08 required installing new cable assemblies with a pull-down resistor. This AD requires modifications to the nose wheel steering (NWS) system. This AD was prompted by a report indicating that several failure modes of the NWS system may cause the loss of feedback from both rotary variable differential transformers to the steering control unit. The FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these  products. This AD is effective July 1, 2021.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (05.28.21)

Aero Linx: The Utah General Aviation Association (UGAA) The Utah General Aviation Association (UGAA) is formed to preserve, promote, and protect the interests of all involved in and served by General Aviation by: Taking all actions and precautions to promote the safety of flight. Monitoring current and proposed State Laws, City and County ordinances and Airport Authority actions to assure they are in consonance with FAA regulations, and by taking action to change any laws and ordinances to make them so. Assuring that all actions taken by any and all government bodies are fair to the interests of General Aviation and promote flight safety.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Term (05.28.21): Navigation Reference System (NRS)

Navigation Reference System (NRS) The NRS is a system of waypoints developed for use within the United States for flight planning and navigation without reference to ground based navigational aids. The NRS waypoints are located in a grid pattern along defined latitude and longitude lines. The initial use of the NRS will be in the high altitude environment in conjunction with the High Altitude Redesign initiative. The NRS waypoints are intended for use by aircraft capable of point-to- point navigation.

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Aero-News: Quote of the Day (05.28.21)

“Keeping the flying public safe is our primary responsibility. That is not negotiable, and the FAA will hold Boeing and the aviation industry accountable to keep our skies safe.” Source: FAA Administrator Steve Dickson, explaining the FAA's rationale for $17 million in penalties against Boeing for problems with the 737 program.

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