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04/28/16 05:09PM
04/27/16 07:42AM
Arlington TX
04/18/16 01:26PM
2009 CESSNA 172 SP
Arlington TX
04/18/16 01:01PM
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FAA Announces New Drone Committee

The FAA will stand up a new advisory committee for the drone industry beginning sometime this summer, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said on Wednesday. Speaking at the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International in New Orleans, Huerta said the committee will be modeled after a similar panel organized to funnel industry opinions into the emerging NextGen system. Huerta said the NextGen Advisory Committee has 30 members from industry, most so-called stakeholders who have an interest in NextGen development issues.

Converted 747 Now Largest Firefighter

A Boeing B747-400 that has been converted to an aerial firefighting tanker is ready to enter service this week, Global SuperTanker Services has announced. The airplane, christened Spirit of John Muir, will be based in Colorado Springs, Colorado. From there, it can be deployed at speeds up to 600 mph to reach wildfires almost anywhere in the continental U.S. within 4.5 hours, or anywhere worldwide within 20 hours.

The Weekender: Opening Up For Summer Flying

The Weekender sees spring fever picking up all over on SocialFlight with airshows, fly-outs and airports opening up for the flying season. Fort Lauderdale's 2016 "Ford Lauderdale" Air Show, running Saturday and Sunday, will feature the Navy F-18 Hornet, U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, Canadian Air Force Snowbirds, and the first civilian air show performance of the F-35 Lightning II.

Bonanza Pilot Declares Emergency Before In-Flight Breakup

A Bonanza BE35 crashed in a residential area on New York's Long Island Tuesday after the pilot declared an emergency, reporting a failed vacuum system. All three people on board are dead and the aircraft appears to have broken up in flight.

GA Groups Lobby For Part 23 Action

The FAA will hold a public hearing on its proposed Part 23 revisions today and tomorrow in College Park, Georgia. On the eve of the event, a coalition of general aviation groups sent a letter to the FAA urging them to work swiftly and implement the revised rule by the end of this year. "The importance of this effort … to assure a brighter future for the general aviation community … cannot be overstated," the groups said.

Solar Impulse Lands In Phoenix

Completing Leg 10 of its round-the-world flight, Solar Impulse 2 landed in Phoenix, Arizona, about 9 p.m. local time on Monday. Pilot Andre Borschberg launched from the airplane's first U.S. stop, in Mountain View, California, about 5 a.m. local time on Monday, and flew for nearly 16 hours, crossing 720 miles. Strong tailwinds helped boost the airplane's groundspeed for the leg to 115 mph.

NAFI Founder Jack Eggspuehler, 86, Dies

The National Association of Flight Instructors announced on Monday that the group's founder, Jack Jay Eggspuehler, died on April 30. He was 86 years old. Eggspuehler was a flight instructor and professor of aviation at The Ohio State University from 1958 to 1980. In 1967, he led a small group of aviation professionals to create NAFI, with the intent to raise the professional standing of flight instructors across the U.S.

Amazon: The Future Is Collaborative Control Of Drones And Airplanes

As Amazon bolts at breakneck speed toward package delivery by autonomous drone, it sees future air traffic control and de-confliction as a series of overlapping but collaborating apps in which aircraft and controllers share separation tasks. Amazon's Gur Kimchi, who's overseeing the company's drone development efforts, outlined a view of the future in which aircraft will be tied into the internet and mutually linked, just like cars, appliances and computers already are. Kimchi elaborated on Amazon's plans on the opening day of Exponential 2106, the trade show of the Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International in New Orleans.

AUVSI: Drones Won't Replace Soldiers, But Empower Them

As the U.S. military deals with the uncertain complexities of a future dependent on and driven by robotic technologies, the soldier of the future will have unprecedented precision capabilities, but also higher expectations than soldiers of the last generation. That's one of several observations offered by General David Perkins at Xponential 2016, the AUVSI trade and technology show in New Orleans, on Tuesday. Perkins is head of the U.S. Army's Training and Doctrine command, the agency charged with describing the future the military will have to operate in. "That's describing, not predicting," Perkins said.

NASM Celebrates 40th With Open House

The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, in Washington, D.C., will stay open all night on Friday, July 1, to celebrate the building's 40th year. The free event also will celebrate the opening of the newly redesigned Milestones of Flight Hall, where historic aircraft are on display, including the Spirit of St. Louis, the Bell X-1 that first broke the sound barrier, SpaceShipOne and more. The "All Night at the Museum" event will feature special tours and demonstrations by NASM staff, music by the U.S. Air Force Band, talks by aviation and space heroes, a film festival, and hands-on activities for kids.

Short Final

Recently, on flight following above Santa Barbara on a beautifully clear afternoon, approach was uncomfortably quiet. After several minutes of silence I called: ... Mooney 1234: "Approach, Mooney 1234. Is there anybody there to talk to?" ... Approach: "Mooney 1234, say request." ... Mooney 1234: "Just checking to see if it really is this quiet." ... Approach: "Yes, it really is." ... [Pause.] ... Approach: "Mooney 1234, contact L.A. Center on 135.5. You'll find somebody to talk to there." ... I took the hint. ... Mooney 1234: "135.5. Thanks." -- Ron Shave

FAA Taking Its Time On ADS-B Equipage

If the increasingly strident messages from the FAA about ADS-B equipage have you feeling the slightest pangs of guilt that you haven't written the check yet, take heart. The agency doesn't seem to be in too much of a hurry to get its own aircraft in compliance and it's shopping around.

BA Collision 'Not A Drone Incident'

The U.K. government is downplaying a widely circulated report that a British Airways A320 collided with a drone last month.

Hoverboard Record Shattered

A French Jet Ski racer has claimed a new record for hoverboard endurance with a flight that covered 1.4 miles. Guinness World Records confirmed that Franky Zapata performed the flight in front of its evaluators in Sausset-les-Pins in the South of France.

Qantas Introduces Female Pilot Uniforms

If the lure of adventure and faraway places isn't enough to attract women to the cockpit, at least one airline is hoping that appealing to their fashion sense will. Qantas Airlines has introduced its newly designed pilot uniforms and for the first time there are designs specifically tailored for women.

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