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2008 PIPER Mirage

09/27/16 09:12AM
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SNC's Dream Chaser Selected For UN Space Flight

Sierra Nevada Corp., which is testing a reusable space vehicle for future NASA missions, will partner with the United Nations for a low-orbit flight in 2021. The company's Dream Chaser folding-twing vehicle, which can land on a runway, was selected for the UN's first space flight slated to last two weeks in low orbit. A little-known bureau of the UN created in the late 1950s, the United Nations Office of Outer Space Affairs, wants to include developing countries in the growing spaceflight industry.

Four Rescued After Seaplane Crash In Washington

Four people survived the crash of a chartered seaplane operated by Kenmore Air in the waters off Washington State Friday. The de Havilland Beaver crashed near its destination, Lopez Island, part of the San Juan Islands just before 9 a.m., according to news reports. The crewmembers on a fishing boat rescued all four from the water as the Coast Guard was notified.

First Four-Seat, Hydrogen-Cell Airplane Flies

A four-seat airplane powered by hydrogen fuel cells completed a first test flight this week in Germany, reaching milestones in both size and emissions-free technology. Researchers at the German aerospace center, the DLR, have been developing the HY4 model with a mission to prove that hydrogen can be a viable aviation fuel.

New This Week

AVweb's search of news in aviation found announcements from the National Aviation Heritage Invitational, EAA Museum, Guardian Avionics and Pilot Partner. The National Aviation Heritage Invitational (NAHI) is teaming up with the California Capital Airshow at Mather Airport, Sacramento, Calif.

'Finding Carla' Explores Tragedy Behind Regulations

When a family survived a wilderness crash in California in 1967 in their Cessna 195, only to die while waiting for rescue that never came, their story brought home the need for general-aviation aircraft to carry ELTs, says Alaska author Ross Nixon. In his book, "Finding Carla," now in bookstores, Nixon details what went wrong, how the survivors coped with being lost and alone, and the impact of their fate. The story reveals "the blood behind the regulations for ELTs," says Nixon.

The Weekender: Oktoberfest Outings

The Weekender will kick off October with some scenic fly-in destinations on SocialFlight.com. On Saturday in Greenville, Illinois, see a special appearance by a TBM Avenger at the 50th anniversary of the Greenville Airport Fly-In/Cruise-In. Also on display will be a Stearman and Waco biplanes, T-34s, a T-6, vintage cars and more. Rain date is Sunday.

SpaceX Details Mars Plans

Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, said on Tuesday his company is working on a plan for manned flights to Mars, with the aim of establishing a permanent colony there. Speaking before a crowd at the International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico, he set out a number of parameters and goals for the project, noting that each trip should cost no more than $200,000 -- about the average cost of a house in the U.S. "We want to make Mars seem possible," he said.

Bell Unveils Unmanned Tiltrotor

Bell Helicopter recently unveiled its new design for an autonomous tiltrotor, the V-247 Vigilant, which will have a 65-foot wingspan and will be capable of carrying a payload of up to 6.5 tons of fuel, armament and sensors. The aircraft, designed for military use, will be able to operate from land or sea, and will be ready to deploy as soon as 2023, according to Bell. The Vigilant will travel at speeds up to 300 knots and can operate within a 250-nm radius.

Executive Expects VTOL Uber In 10 Years

Uber is taking a serious look at autonomous VTOL aircraft for urban transport, and could have a fleet flying within a decade, chief products officer Jeff Holden said at a Nantucket conference on Sunday. In an interview with Kara Swisher of Re/code, Holden said the technology "could change cities and how we work and live." Holden said he has been researching the possibilities "so we can someday offer our customers as many options as possible to move around … doing it in a three-dimensional way is an obvious thing to look at."

NBAA Report: Flight Crews Skip Checks

A study conducted by NBAA has found that 15 percent of flights in business jets begin without a complete flight-control check, the association reported last week. The NTSB suggested a need for the study after its investigation of a fatal 2014 accident involving a Gulfstream G-IV at Hanscom Field, in Bedford, Mass. The safety board found the crew had not performed a flight-control check before takeoff, and as a result, they had no way of knowing the aircraft's gust lock was engaged. The jet ran off the runway and caught fire, killing all seven on board.

NavWorx Disputing FAA Rebate Rejection

NavWorx says it is working to resolve an issue with the FAA, which is refusing to process $500 rebate reservations for two models of transceivers the company makes.

Three Die In Fly-Out Midair

Three people were killed when two aircraft collided in North Collins, south of Buffalo, Sunday morning.

F-117s Back In The Air

The F-117 Nighthawk stealth fighter may be the latest example of the U.S. military resurrecting a retired aircraft type.

Aviation Advocate Arnold Palmer Dies (Updated)

Golf legend Arnold Palmer, one of business aviation's most prominent cheerleaders, died Sunday in Pittsburgh at the age of 87.

Short Final

JAX Approach: American 123, airport 11 o'clock, 8 miles. Report in sight ... AA123: (obviously, the co-pilot)The man says he has the airport in sight ... JAX approach: Tell the man he's cleared to the airport, expect a visual runway 8 ... AA123: I'll break it to him gently.

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