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11/24/15 03:50PM
2008 CESSNA 400SL

11/23/15 12:12PM
2006 CESSNA 400SL

11/23/15 12:03PM
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First Chinese ARJ21 Delivered

China's first indigenous commercial airliner is now in revenue service with domestic budget carrier Chengdu Airlines. The ARJ21 was delivered Sunday.

E-Volo Flies, Unmanned And Tethered

The one-of-a-kind E-Volo volocopter came outside for its first flight tests recently, the company announced in a news release today. The volocopter was controlled remotely, and the crew tested for automatic altitude control and position hold, and automatic landing. Weights of about 265 pounds were placed in the cockpit to test for payload capacity. The tests were completed in Karlsruhe, Germany. "In the process, the company's CEO Alex Zosel remotely flew the Volocopter for the first time – single-handed and only with a joystick," the company said.

Airbus Patents Modular Passenger Cabins

The U.S. Patent Office has accepted Airbus' design for shipping-container-style loading of passengers on aircraft. The company's prolific patent department put forth the "aircraft pod concept" in 2013 to load passengers in detachable cabin sections to minimize turnaround time on the ground.

Study: Toy Drone Strikes Pose Greater Hazard Than Birds

An aerospace company's new study on the hazards of toy drones mixing with manned aircraft concludes that the safety risks are greater that those of bird strikes. The study from Aero Kinetics, "The Real Consequences of Flying Toy Drones in the National Airspace System," concludes that rotorcraft pilots are at the highest risk of dying from a head-on drone collision.

Army Helicopter Crashes In Texas, Four Dead

A UH-60L Army helicopter crashed Monday evening while flying in Fort Hood Range in Texas, killing all four crew members on board. Fort Hood officials said emergency crews found the wreckage after an "extensive search" of the northeast portion of the range.

Tecnam P2012 Testing Continues With Lycoming iE2

The testing of Tecnam's upcoming P2012 airplane now includes FADEC engines developed by Lycoming. The Italian aircraft manufacturer announced this week it has installed iE2 engines on the test aircraft, which is slated for a first flight in mid-2016.

Helicopter Crashes In Siberia, 10 Dead

An Mi-8 helicopter crashed on a frozen river in Siberia Thursday, with at least 10 reported dead and 15 injured. Rescue crews with snowmobiles are at the site, about six miles from the Igarka airport.

Hybrid Airship Advances Toward Certification

Lockheed Martin has moved a step closer to FAA certification for its hybrid airship design, the company said last week. Lockheed worked with the FAA's certification office in Seattle for more than a decade to develop a plan to allow a nonrigid hybrid airship to operate as a commercial aircraft, since the FAA had no existing regulations to cover the category. Two years ago, the FAA created a certification pathway. Now the FAA has approved Lockheed Martin's plan showing how its design will meet all of the certification criteria. Lockheed Martin now plans to achieve certification and start delivering operational 20-ton airships as soon as 2018.

Rutan's SkiGull Takes First Flight

Burt Rutan's latest aircraft prototype, the SkiGull, took a first flight this week from Coeur d'Alene airport in Idaho. The documentary film team following Rutan's work posted photos on Facebook, saying the flight lasted for about 90 minutes with test pilot Glenn Smith, who reported that "the plane was responsive, predictable and fun."

The Weekender: A Good Day To Fly Indoors

The Weekender is on the road after Thanksgiving and found a few places to stop on SocialFlight. All pilots (current and non-current) are invited to share their experience with budding aviators at the St. Louis Science Center, where the Gateway Eagles will host nine simulator stations to introduce visitors to flying the Cessna 172.

New This Week

AVweb's search of aviation news around the world found updates from the flight simulation industry, an upcoming business jet conference, and the passing of the founder of Mayo Aviation.

NTSB: Icing, Malfunctions Led To Citation Crash

Severe icing and malfunctioning instruments led to the crash of a Cessna Citation in Kansas two years ago, the NTSB said in its probable cause report this week. The 1975 Cessna 500 Citation I was at 15,000 feet when it began a high-speed descent and crashed in a field, killing the pilot and single passenger on board.

Eclipse Jets Offered By The Hour

Ascension Air, which operates a fleet of Cirrus SR22 aircraft from its bases in Atlanta and Fort Lauderdale, now is offering jet cards and time shares for the Eclipse 550 jet. "Our new Eclipse 550 Contrails program will bring personal jet transportation to a growing segment of aviators who want the flexibility and benefits of flying their own jet, without the worries of full jet ownership," said Ascension Air CEO Jamail Larkins. "Our professional owner-services team offers easy fleet access, on-site concierge services, professional aircraft management, a safety pilot, and streamlined scheduling."

Blue Origin Achieves Safe Rocket Landing

Blue Origin, the space company headed by Jeff Bezos, has succeeded where every other effort has failed -- on Monday, the company launched its unmanned New Shepard suborbital space vehicle from Texas to 329,839 feet, then the crew capsule separated and landed under a parachute, and the rocket module also made a safe, powered, vertical landing. It's the first time a rocket has been recovered intact and reusable after a space vehicle launch.

Turkish F-16s Shoot Down Russian Su-24

A Russian Sukhoi Su-24 was shot down Tuesday near the Syrian-Turkish border by air-to-air missiles fired by Turkish F-16 fighter jets, officials said. Various accounts have disputed whether the aircraft was above Syrian or Turkish territory at the time, and a U.S. official, speaking off the record to the Los Angeles Times, said if the jet did cross into Turkish airspace, it was only for a few seconds. The crew reportedly ejected before the crash, but Russian military officials said at least one of the pilots was killed.

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