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April 20, 2023

Airborne-Flight Training 04.20.23: FAA Test Changes, 737 MAX-8 Sim, USAF Training

 Also: Young Eagles Day, Textron “Top Hawks”, Royal Aeronautical Society, AEA LIVECast 04/24-26

 
 
The FAA’s Airman Testing division has disclosed it has been working in cooperation with its testing vendor, PSI Services, to scientifically assess existing FAA Airman Knowledge Tests. Assessments of the Private Pilot Airplane and Commercial Pilot Airplane Knowledge Tests have been completed. Pan Am Flight Academy just obtained a new Level D B737 MAX-8 simulator to enhance its commercial pilot training offerings. The MAX-8 allows the school to provide up-to-date training with a "state-of-the-art simulator", and should be ready for student use by July. U.S. military aviation officials are evaluating the effectivene

Southwest Airlines Contends with Ongoing Tech Woes

You Are Now Free to Move About the Complaint Queue

In the wake of technical issues, hundreds of Southwest Airlines flights were delayed on Tuesday, 18 April 2023. The widespread service disruptions prompted the Dallas-based airline to temporarily halt flight operations. Southwest set forth that the delays and an ensuing, FAA-mandated ground stop had been occasioned by “data connection issues resulting from a firewall failure.”

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Natilus Flies Blended-Wing-Body Prototype

Pushing to Eradicate Human Pilots

On 19 April 2023, Natilus announced it had successfully completed multiple flights of a subscale prototype of its Kona regional aircraft. By dint of a protracted series of wind-tunnel tests undertaken for purpose of assessing the aerodynamic performance of Natilus’s unique Blended-Wing-Body (BWB) architecture, the company has drawn one tangible step nearer its objective or doing wholly away with the traditional piloting profession—for humans, anyway.

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Virgin Orbit Completes Failure Investigation

A Victory Most Pyrrhic

On 19 April 2023, Virgin Orbit completed the full-scale test series by which investigators verified the root cause of the 09 January launch failure and presented a modification designed to address such. Investigators recreated flight conditions and demonstrated the dislodging and subsequent travel of a fuel filter into the Newton-4 engine of one of the company's LauncherOne rockets.

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Airborne 04.12.23: Cornwall Update, VARMA Initiative, Florida v UAVs

Also: Nolen's Future, Swift Fuels Extension, FAA Tests & PHAK, Spirit of Flight Museum

This breaks our hearts... The U.K.’s Cornwall Aviation Heritage Centre (CAHC) has been confronted with the very outcome it has battled mightily to circumvent. The Cornwall Council—the governing body of England’s Cornwall County and steward of the Cornwall Airport Newquay (NQY) upon which the CAHC’s museum has operated since 2015—has set forth that subject museum must vacate its current premises immediately. The FAA has unveiled a new program for the use of off-the-shelf parts in type-certificated aircraft. The approval is the first granted

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Airborne 04.12.23: Cornwall Update, VARMA Initiative, Florida v UAVs

Also: Nolen's Future, Swift Fuels Extension, FAA Tests & PHAK, Spirit of Flight Museum

This breaks our hearts... The U.K.’s Cornwall Aviation Heritage Centre (CAHC) has been confronted with the very outcome it has battled mightily to circumvent. The Cornwall Council—the governing body of England’s Cornwall County and steward of the Cornwall Airport Newquay (NQY) upon which the CAHC’s museum has operated since 2015—has set forth that subject museum must vacate its current premises immediately. The FAA has unveiled a new program for the use of off-the-shelf parts in type-certificated aircraft. The approval is the first granted

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Daher Unveils Me & My TBM App 6.0

Upgraded Platform Impresses

On 19 April 2023, Daher unveiled the sixth iteration of its Me & My TBM platform—a cloud-based in-flight monitoring app. Introduced in 2018, Daher’s Me & My TBM app leverages the company’s data-management expertise to collect, process, and analyze more than four-million data points generated daily by the TBM in-service fleet.

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Planes, Trains, & Automobiles Event Coming to Plant City Airport

Popular Event Returns after Two-Year COVID Hiatus

In 2020, Planes, Trains, and Automobiles was among the last public events held prior to the knee-jerk shuttering of the civilized world on account, ostensibly, of the global COVID madness. Comes now 2023, and the popular event—after a two-year hiatus—returns on 22 April for its 11th iteration. Event gates will open at 10:00 EST and the fun will go on until 15:00 EST.

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WestJet Pilot Base Approves Job Action

As Company Bleeds Talent, Clock Ticks on Conciliation Deadline

Staring down the deadline for conciliation, Westjet pilots turned in an “overwhelming vote of support for lawful job action”, according to their representatives at the ALPA. More than 95% of the pilot base turned out to vote, with 93% voting to strike if a negotiated settlement is not reached by May 16, 2023. The result was described as a “clear sign that WestJet pilots remain committed to securing a North American industry-standard contract,” noting that an agreeable deal would “go a long way toward fixing WestJet’s recruitment and retention issues.

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Avidyne Named AEA Associate Member of the Year

Avidyne's Investments in Supply Pay Dividents in Dealer Esteem

The Aircraft Electronic Association is hitting the ground running ahead of its trade show on the 24th of April, announcing this year’s Associate Member of the Year: Avidyne. Avidyne’s selection comes at the behest of AEA members throughout the industry, chosen by dealers in recognition for their service throughout the pandemic and beyond.

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Classic Aero-TV: Rainbow Aviation's EMG-6 - The Cutest Motor Glider

From 2016 (YouTube Version): At EAA AirVenture 2016 We Found Flying Ultralights Is Fun, and Cute Is a Bonus…

While at EAA AirVenture 2016, ANN’s, Earl Downs, headed to the south end of the Wittman Regional Airport where the ultralights hang out. This part of AirVenture, also referred to as the ‘fun zone,’ displays some great aircraft that represent the epitome of recreational aviation. Earl stopped to talk with Brian Carpenter, who is the owner of Rainbow Aviation Services and its subdivision, Adventure Aircraft. One of the aircraft the

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DiversiFlite Scholars Announced by Vertical Flight Society

Scholarships aim to Connect Students with All-Expenses-Paid Trip

The Vertical Flight Society has announced its trio of 2023 DiversiFlite Scholars, providing the winners with a paid trip to the VFS Annual Forum in May. The Vertical Flight Society’s forum is a sterling opportunity for young rotorcraft enthusiasts and engineers, with keynote speakers and networking opportunities galore. This year, the program selected three promising engineering students, interested in vertical flight and studying towards a technical career at “US recognized Minority-Serving Institutions”.

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NTSB Prelim: Cessna 525B

Pilot Reported That While In A Cruise Descent At An Altitude Of About 30,000 Ft... He Felt Two “Big Jolts”

On March 30, 2023, about 1815 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 525B, N869AC, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident over the Gulf of Mexico. The airline transport pilot was not injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 corporate flight. The flight originated at 1647 from Walnut Ridge Regional Airport (ARG), Walnut Ridge, Arkansas, and was destined for Page Field Airport (FMY), Fort Myers, Florida. The pilot reported that while in a cruise descent at an altitude of about 30,000 ft, and about 1815, he felt two “big jolts.”

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ANN's Daily Aero-Term (04.20.23): Hazardous Weather Information

Hazardous Weather Information

Summary of significant meteorological information (SIGMET/WS), convective significant meteorological information (convective SIGMET/WST), urgent pilot weather reports (urgent PIREP/UUA), center weather advisories (CWA), airmen's meteorological information (AIRMET/WA) and any other weather such as isolated thunderstorms that are rapidly developing and increasing in intensity, or low ceilings and visibilities that are becoming widespread which is considered significant and are not included in a current hazardous weather advisory.

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Aero-News: Quote of the Day (04.20.23)

“We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, but we’re hoping to get everyone going ASAP.”

Source: An excerpt from the most recent public excuses posted to social media by beleaguered SouthWest Airlines after another computer foul-up fouled up hundreds of flights and brought further shame to the aviation industry.

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