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A conversation about flight shaming with the creative director of SimpliFlying, an international aviation marketing consulting firm. In the news, we look at Airbus production rates and employment growth at its Mobile, Alabama facility, China’s struggle with the COMAC C919 airliner, the first autonomous flight of the Bell V-280 Valor tiltrotor, and how a fugitive navigated through the aircraft charter business to make good his escape.
Dirk Singer is the creative director at SimpliFlying and the editor of Airline Marketing Monthly, an aviation marketing trade magazine. SimpliFlying is an international aviation marketing consulting firm with a 100% remote team based in Singapore, India, Spain, UK, and Canada.
Dirk looks after the creative and content side of SimpliFlying. He’s written over 1000 articles on aviation marketing and produced special industry reports including a recent one on “flight shaming” and the aviation industry.
In our conversation with Dirk, we discover what flight shaming is (sometimes simply called “flight shame”) and the arguments its proponents are making. Dirk describes the industry’s response so far and how their messaging lacks the clarity of flight shaming groups. He also warns against industry counter-arguments based on the relatively small contribution commercial aviation makes to carbon emissions.
The climate change movement is not an amorphous mass. There are a number of climate change advocacy groups with some showing a willingness to engage in a conversation, and others not. The groups have differing views on commercial aviation and range from a ban on non-essential flying to a frequent-flyer tax.
Some LCCs are positioning themselves as “green airlines” and Dirk explains the dangers of a strategy that offers nothing more than high-density aircraft. We also touch on crisis simulation company Polpeo and their simulation exercises that can prepare an airline for a communication crisis over environmental issues.
Dirk has over 20 years of experience as a digital marketer. He’s created two agencies from scratch, both of which won agency-of-the-year awards in the PR and social media industries. In addition to working for brands ranging from Google to Phillips, Dirk’s aviation experience includes airports such as London Gatwick and airlines such as British Midland International.
Airbus has been producing five A320s per month at its Mobile, Alabama plant. By the start of 2021, they intend to increase the production rate to seven per month. Airbus’ worldwide goal is a production rate of 63 A320-family aircraft per month at its four assembly sites. To support the A320 rate increase at the Alabama plant, as well as manufacturing needs for the A220, Airbus intends to hire 275 additional employees over the next year. Airbus added 600 new jobs at the Alabama facility last year.
China’s COMAC (the Commercial Aircraft Corporation) has struggled to produce the C919 (A320/737 class) single-aisle plane. It is at least five years behind schedule. A range of technical issues that impacted the test flight schedule. To gain approval from the CAAC (the Civil Aviation Administration of China), COMAC needs 4,200 test flight hours. Less than a fifth have been completed.
On December 18, 2019, Bell’s V-280 Valor tilt-rotor demonstrator flew autonomously for the first time. “The V-280 performed an autonomous takeoff, conversion into cruise mode, precision navigation to various waypoints, loiter maneuvers, conversion into vertical-takeoff-and-landing mode, and landed autonomously.” Paul Wilson, the chief engineer for the Bell V-280 Valor program, was our guest in Episode #576.
Carlos Ghosn was an automotive industry executive. He was the CEO of Michelin North America, chairman and CEO of Renault, chairman and CEO of Nissan, chairman of Mitsubishi Motors, and chairman and CEO of the Renault–Nissan–Mitsubishi Alliance. He was internationally recognized as a respected business leader but he was arrested for under-reporting his earnings and misuse of company assets funds. While on bail, Ghosn escaped Japan through several clever charter aircraft flights.
Flower Aviation, a fixed base operator at Pueblo Memorial Airport (KPUB) near Pueblo, Colorado.
Preservation of World War II aviation history with Dave Homewood. In the news, we look at labor contract negotiations at US airlines, the latest on the 737 MAX crisis, the safest airlines to fly in 2020, the Punctuality League 2020 results, a great story from United Airlines, and why the A-10 Warthog can’t be stopped.
Dave Homewood goes for a ride. Photo by Stu Russell.
Dave Homewood is a New Zealander who grew up in an aviation-loving home. He joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force in 1989 and served as a Safety Equipment Technician in the Safety And Surface trade till 1993. Along the way, Dave developed a huge interest in WWII air force history.
Living in Cambridge, he began researching the people from his town who’d served in the Air Force in WWII. That massive Wings Over Cambridge project continues today, along with the Wings Over New Zealand Aviation Forum that has become a hub for the New Zealand aviation community.
Dave created a podcast called the Wings Over New Zealand Show, or WONZ, and even hosted a live version of the show for several years. Taking the show on the road to Australia with James Kightly to visit museums, aircraft collections, restoration shops, and an airshow, Wings Over Australia was born containing interviews with interesting Aussie aviation personalities.
Dave interviews wartime Spitfire pilot Jim Robinson. Photo by Peter Wheeler.
This year, Dave plans to create a similar sub-series, Wings Over Britain, traveling to England to visit museums, airfields, aircraft collections, airshows and memorials and interview people involved in aviation there and particularly in the preservation of both warbirds and the memories of the people they represent.
Dave says he “will weave into the series the stories of the thousands of New Zealanders who traveled halfway around the world to fly and fight in the defense of Britain and the liberation of Europe in WWII. Particularly of note will be marking the 80th Anniversary of the Battle of Britain, and also the Battle of France. During both battles, New Zealanders made up the largest number of non-UK pilots and aircrew to take part. I’ll also cover Kiwis taking the fight to Europe, including D-Day, and also Kiwis in the Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm, and probably a few stories of Kiwis who also flew and fought in WWI.”
Dave is the editor of Sport Flying magazine and does freelance writing as well as research for other writers, and for warbird aircraft owners tracing the history of their airplanes, and for families seeking info on their ancestors who flew or served in the RNZAF. He also interviews veterans for his Courage And Valour: New Zealanders in the Italian Campaign podcast.
After ten consecutive years of profitability for airlines, organized labor is looking to share in the good fortune and also advance some quality-of-life benefits. Labor agreements with over 120,000 unionized airline employees are scheduled for this year.
2019 was a “disastrous year” for Boeing and 2020 will be “precarious.” Boeing has new leadership, the company is hemorrhaging financial resources, engineering resources are focused on the 737 MAX, and Boeing has lost strategic advantage to Airbus. Boeing faces a damaged reputation with airlines, regulators, pilots, and the flying public.
Airlineratings.com announced the Top Twenty Safest Airlines for 2020: Qantas, Air New Zealand, EVA Air, Etihad, Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines, Emirates, Alaska Airlines, Cathay Pacific Airways, Virgin Australia, Hawaiian Airlines, Virgin Atlantic Airlines, TAP Portugal, SAS, Royal Jordanian, Swiss, Finnair, Lufthansa, Aer Lingus, and KLM.
The site also announced the Top Ten Safest Low-Cost Airlines for 2020, in alphabetical order: Air Arabia, Flybe, Frontier, HK Express, IndiGo, Jetblue, Volaris, Vueling, Westjet, and Wizz.
For many years, United Airlines has taken children in need on a “Fantasy Flight to the North Pole.” This season, flights originated from 16 cities around the world.
Delta Air Lines is the Most Punctual Mega Airline in the U.S. for the Third-Straight Year, According to OAG’s Punctuality League 2020
OAG announced the results of its Punctuality League 2020, and Delta ranked number 1 for U.S. airlines in the Mega Airline category for a third consecutive year with an OTP of 83.56%. The U.S. remains a world leader for punctuality, finishing with four of the top 10 most punctual Mega Airlines and six of the top 10 Mega Airports globally.
The U.S Air Force has given up trying to retire the A-10 and will instead upgrade the aircraft.
John Mollison from Old Guys and Their Airplanes has a new film titled The Mettle Behind the Merit – The Steve Pisanos Story. Produced with the Distinguished Flying Cross Society, it is about an immigrant who came to live the American Dream and ended up an ace and WWII war hero. An Educator’s Kit is available to bring the story into the classroom.
Important Charter Guidance for Pilots and Passengers – The FAA says this posting will be removed on January 19, 2020.
Contact Ground, Point Niner – OpenAirplane.com and FlyOtto.com have shut down.
Bits & Pieces
Our Main(e) Man Micah looks back at his aviation activities from 2019.
We talk about flight planning with the founder and CEO of SkyVector. In the news, we look at transferring funding for light attack planes to the U.S. Special Operations Command, the Aircraft Noise Reduction Act, Boeing’s Board of Directors’ decision to pause 737 MAX production, and Alaska Airlines ugly holiday sweater promotion. We also have the Australia News Desk from the boys down under.
David Graves, founder and CEO of the SkyVector flight planning system.
David Graves is the founder and CEO of SkyVector, which provides worldwide aeronautical charts, online mapping, and related flight planning products and services. The company combines its aeronautical mapping capability with weather and data overlays, airport information, FBO listings, and more.
In 2003, David was working as a programmer for a Seattle startup. He took an introductory flight with a small flight school at Boeing Field and his first solo came after 4 months and 20 hours. He earned his private pilot’s license about a year later.
SkyVector.com flight planning went on-line in the fall of 2006 and by the end of 2009, it was experiencing over 100,000 unique users a month. In 2010, David quit his job to work on SkyVector full-time. The World VFR and World IFR charts went live in 2012. Flight Plan filing went live in 2015, and at the end of the decade, SkyVector is being visited by over 550,000 unique users per month.
David explains some of the discriminators of flight planning services, the SkyVector user interface, and interaction with other flight planning products. We discuss data sources and improvements in accuracy and learn about the Multi-Radar Multi-Sensor (MRMS) project which utilizes an automated system that integrates data from multiple radars and other sources to generate seamless, high spatio-temporal resolution mosaics. (Be sure to see the Operational Product Viewer.)
We touch on the SkyVector map layer with unmanned aircraft Notams (or “Drotams”), compare the new electronic flight planning tools with the “old” paper and pencil methods, and look at future flight planning developments.
Congress wants the Air Force to consider transferring some funding allocated for light attack planes to U.S. Special Operations Command.
U.S. Congressman Joe Neguse representing the 2nd District of Colorado has introduced legislation that would give local general aviation airports the power to set noise restrictions. Currently, airports must get approval from the FAA if they want to establish curfews or other noise-based restrictions on flight operations. See also, Congressman Neguse Introduces Legislation to Expand Local Control of Airports in Northern Colorado
At the Boeing Board of Directors meeting on December 16, 2019, a decision was made to pause 737 MAX commercial production in January 2020. Boeing will not lay off any employees during the production halt. See also, Halt or Curb 737 Max Production? Boeing Faces Difficult Decision.
December 20, 2019, is National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day. It’s celebrated on the third Friday of December each year. Sometimes it’s called National Ugly Holiday Sweater Day, or simply National Ugly Sweater Day. In any event, Alaska Airlines has a promotion and passengers wearing a holiday sweater on December 20 will be allowed to board early.
Australia News Desk
Steve Visscher and Grant McHerron bring us a news report from the Australia Desk.
From Jon Ostrower’s The Air Current: Pilot procedure confusion adds new complication to Boeing 737 Max return
Video: Uber Air
We discuss airline safety in light of the newly revised EU Air Safety List and claims by Horizon Air of a lax pilot safety culture. Also, free admission at EAA Airventure Oshkosh for youth 18 and under, layoffs coming to Textron, space-based ADS-B, and a load stability system for helicopters.
The EU Air Safety List details the countries and specific airlines that do not meet the airline safety standards of ICAO (the United Nations’ International Civil Aviation Organization). Entities on the list are banned from operating in the European Union or have operational restrictions within the EU. Banned from EU skies are 115 airlines, 109 of them in 15 states due to a lack of safety oversight by the aviation authorities in those states. For more on airline safety see:
- How to Tell If Your Airline Is Safe from Condé Nast Traveler
- The FAA’s International Aviation Safety Assessment Program (IASA)
- The International Air Transport Association’s Operational Safety Audit (IOSA)
Horizon Air’s vice president of flight operations stated that the airline suffers under a lax safety culture among the airline’s pilots, writing in an email, “If we sit back and do nothing, we will have an accident. Nothing good can come of the trajectory we are currently on.”
Young people ages 18 and under will be admitted free to EAA AirVenture Oshkosh as a way to introduce more youth to the possibilities in the world of flight. The 68th annual Experimental Aircraft Association fly-in convention will be July 20-26, 2020 at Wittman Regional Airport. The Boeing Company is financially supporting this effort for the next two years to encourage more aviation-minded families and their children to attend the annual event that brings more than 10,000 aircraft from around the world to Oshkosh.
Textron Aviation announced upcoming layoffs under a restructuring plan and didn’t provide details on the size of the workforce reduction. But a Securities and Exchange Commission filing indicates that about 875 positions will be eliminated. The plan will “improve overall operating efficiency through headcount reductions, facility consolidations, and other actions.”
Northern Virginia-based surveillance firm picks up airplane signals to save time and fuel over Atlantic
Aireon provides a global air traffic surveillance system using Iridium’s satellite network for space-based ADS-B. Reducing the separation requirements for flights crossing the Atlantic gives pilots more freedom to adjust routes and altitude for efficiency.
After His Search-And-Rescue Instructor Died On A Mountain, Caleb Carr, 25, Cofounded A Company To Help Stabilize Helicopter Baskets
When he was just 15 and training as a volunteer search-and-rescuer in Oregon, Caleb Carr’s instructor collapsed of an apparent heart attack. Due to high winds, the rescue helicopter could not put the swaying rescue basket through the dense tree cover and the instructor died on the mountain. Carr and Derek Sikora went on to found Vita Inclinata (Latin for “life by motion”) to provide autonomous helicopter load stability systems.
Airlines Confidential Podcast, hosted by Ben Baldanza (the former CEO of Spirit Airlines) and Seth Kaplan (transportation analyst for NPR’s Here & Now, former publisher of Airline Weekly.)
AERObridge coordinates business and general aviation aircraft for disaster response in times of need. In the news, we look at airliner formation flying, IndiGo engine failures, Boeing’s hand in X-Wing drones, a volcanic eruption forcing a turnback, a jet blast injury, a bill to spur transportation careers, and slipping a president out of the country.
Disaster response flight. Courtesy AERObridge.
Trevor Norman is the AERObridge national chapter coordinator. AERObridge is a non-profit organization that coordinates donated business and general aviation aircraft to provide disaster response in times of catastrophic emergencies. They transport critically needed items and personnel to where they are needed.
Trevor explains how AERObridge matches aircraft with emergency response teams and critical supplies. The organization delivers aid from donors like AirCare Alliance and Crossroads Alliance. We discuss how AERObridge coordinates with other organizations and local agencies, and how pilots are vetted and matched with missions that fit with their aircraft and their skills. Trevor describes how no two disasters are the same and the need to be flexible and change plans on a moment’s notice.
As a non-profit organization, AERObridge accepts donations of time, talent, and treasure.
Geese fly in V-formations because they are aerodynamically more efficient than all of them flying alone. If airliners employ the same technique, they could find a 5 to 10% fuel savings on a long oceanic flight.
IndiGo has been experiencing A320neo turbine failures in its Pratt & Whitney GTF engines and they’ve seen 13 engine shutdowns this year. Interestingly, Go Airlines India flying the same equipment has not seen these problems. India’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation says IndiGo’s practice of running up A320neo jets at full thrust right after takeoff could wear down the engines.
Boeing may have been working to help Disney Imagineers create ⅔ scale X-Wing drones based on Boeing’s NeXt Cargo Air Vehicle.
KLM flight KL685 from Amsterdam to Mexico City was heading toward volcanic activity from Popocatepetl, just outside their destination. Because of the “unfavourable flying conditions” and the cargo of horses, the flight had to return to Schiphol. “Landing at another airport was not possible, because of the visa requirements of passengers and as there was a large cargo of horses onboard.”
A woman boarding a private jet in October at Augusta Regional Airport was seriously injured when the jet blast from another aircraft knocked her over. The National Transportation Safety Board released a preliminary report on the incident indicating that while the airport and the FBO had a protocol for aircraft being marshaled into the taxiway, there was no protocol for aircraft leaving the area.
The Promoting Service in Transportation Act was recently introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill authorizes the U.S. Department of Transportation to develop and publish public service announcements in digital, print, and broadcast media which highlight the need for more professional airline pilots, safety inspectors, mechanics and technicians, air traffic controllers, and flight attendants, as well as railroad workers, truck drivers, and other transportation industry professionals. News release: Larsen, Young and Craig Introduce Bill to Promote Transportation Career Opportunities
President Trump visited the Afghanistan combat zone, but he had to be whisked out of Florida without being noticed, possibly on a Senior Leader In-transit Pallet (SLIP).
Clockwise from top left: David Vanderhoof, Max Flight, Lily the Cat, Trevor Norman.
News from the 2019 Dubai Airshow, Boeing’s 737 MAX 10, splitting up families who want to sit together on the airplane, NTSB findings on the fatal Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 accident, and a commercial aerial tanker company. Also, the application of structural batteries to aircraft, flying in formation down under, and romance in the air.
Dubai Airshow 2019
The 2019 Dubai Airshow ran November 17 – 21, reportedly with 1300 exhibitors, 100 aircraft on display, and around 90,000 in attendance over the five days. We talk about some of the aircraft orders placed and other topics from the airshow.
The largest Boeing 737 MAX is the MAX 10, and the company debuted the aircraft at its Renton, Washington facility. Boeing says they currently have more than 550 orders and commitments for the aircraft. With a range of 3,300 NM and maximum seating for 230 passengers, Boeing says it will offer the lowest seat-mile cost of any single-aisle airplane yet produced.
Boeing’s 737 Max shouldn’t be allowed to fly with a controversial flight-control system, an aviation regulator reportedly said in leaked emails
Reportedly, the Transport Canada Civil Aviation manager of aircraft integration and safety assessment sent an email saying the “only way I see moving forward at this point, is that MCAS has to go.” The manager’s email was sent to the FAA, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency, and the National Civil Aviation Agency in Brazil.
The FAA Extension, Safety, and Security Act of 2016 directed the Department of Transportation to study guidelines that would keep families together on airlines. Carriers were to have policies that keep parents and children under 13 sitting together. But that hasn’t happened and Senator Chuck Schumer from New York isn’t happy. See Family Seating from the DOT for tips.
NTSB Issues 7 Safety Recommendations Based on Findings from Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 Investigation
As a result of the engine failure on Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 on April 17, 2018, material pierced the fuselage and caused the cabin to depressurize, with one fatality. The NTSB explains:
“…portions of the fan cowl separated in flight after a fan blade, which had fractured due to a fatigue crack, impacted the engine fan case at a location that was critical to the structural integrity and performance of the fan cowl structure. The NTSB found that the separated fan blade impacted the engine fan case and fractured into multiple fragments. Some of the fragments traveled forward of the engine and into the inlet. The impact of the separated fan blade with the fan case also imparted significant loads into the fan cowl through the radial restraint fitting, which is what caused the fan cowl to fail.”
It was the failed engine inlet and casing that impacted the fuselage. An abstract of the final report is available and includes the findings, probable cause, and safety recommendations.
Video: A380 Blade Off Test
Omega Air operates a few hose and drogue aerial tankers and has now received the first of two surplus KDC-10 tankers with aerial refueling booms from the Royal Netherlands Air Force. That will allow Omega Air to provide contractor refueling support to the USAF and other allies.
Kevin, Eddie, Monty, Mal, Mark, and Jorgo at the HARS museum at Wollongong. Eddie’s immaculate RV-7 is behind.
Observations from the 2019 NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE). In the news, strange ideas to make airlines greener, a fleet of commuter planes to avoid road traffic, Southwest B737 maintenance records, therapy animals in the airport, Hawaiian Airlines 90th anniversary, and the Boeing 777X business jet.
Rob Mark attended NBAA-BACE held Event October 22 – 24, 2019 at the Las Vegas Convention Center and at Henderson Executive Airport. Rob offers some impressions of the event and talks about some of the new aircraft like the Gulfstream G700 and the Pilatus PC-12 NGX. He’s also pretty excited about the Vū Systems passive millimeter-wave sensor.
- Vū Systems’ New Cube Will Change Instrument Approach Flying Forever
- Reflections On NBAA-BACE 2019
- 2019 NBAA-BACE Lives Up to Promise, Driving Change in a Rapidly Evolving Industry
Rob also attended the Bombardier Safety Standdown held November 12 to 14, 2019 at the Omni Fort Worth Hotel, in Fort Worth, Texas. The event attracted a wide variety of participants, some 550 strong, all of whom are deeply interested in aviation safety.
Several airline executives have recently offered some strange ideas: Hungarian LCC Wizz Air CEO Jozsef Varadi is calling for airlines to stop offering business class on flights less than five hours, calling it “an inefficient and archaic model.” Lufthansa Group CEO Carsten Spohr has declared that “flights for less than 10EUR shouldn’t exist.”
FLOAT Shuttle Inc. (Fly Over All Traffic) offers southern California commuter flights operated by Southern Airways Express, LLC. from GA airports. For a fixed monthly fee, commuters beat ground transportation with 15-30 minute flights from almost 40 airports.
The permafrost at Greenland’s Kangerlussuaq Airport is melting, causing the runway to crack. They say civilian flights will end within five years and so a new airport is being constructed.
From 2014, Southwest Airlines purchased 88 Boeing 737 planes from more than a dozen foreign airlines. Southwest had the planes inspected and they were found compliant per FAA delegated authority. However, the FAA found some records discrepancies in May 2018 and gave Southwest 2 two years to bring the maintenance documentation into compliance. As of October 29, 2019, only 39 of the planes had been inspected.
San Francisco International Airport is using a “Wag Brigade” to help passengers with travel anxieties. LiLou the therapy pig sports a pilot’s cap and painted toenails. She says hello by raising a hoof, poses for selfies, and manages to entertain departing passengers with her toy piano. The Wag Brigade program also includes a number of dogs.
The first Hawaiian Airlines flight took place on Nov. 11, 1929, from Honolulu to Hilo. To celebrate its 90th anniversary, Hawaiian Airlines recreated that flight, flying on the same day, route and time as they did 90 years ago.
The Boeing Business Jet isn’t just one jet – it’s a series of airliner variants for the private and corporate jet market that includes the 747-8 VIP, 737 MAX VIP, 787 VIP, and 777X VIP. The 777X VIP has a 3,256 sq. ft. cabin with a base price of $474 million. Expect to spend an additional $90–$175 million to outfit the plane.
AvgeekFests.com aviation events calendar.
Thursday Thunder – What I Really Want To Fly from Sticks, Stories, and Scotch.
Lee Human, AeroTEC president and CEO.
Lee Human is president and CEO of AeroTEC, an independent provider of initial engineering, design, prototype manufacturing, testing, and airworthiness certification. The company uses in-house instrumentation, software, tools, and processes throughout the projects.
We discuss aircraft certification: what it is and how it takes place within the overall design and development process of a new aircraft or aircraft modification. Lee explains organizational delegation and why there is a partnership between the FAA and the manufacturer. We talk about the independence of the decisions DERs make and the establishment by the FAA of the roles in the compliance review community.
Since aircraft certification is a current topic as it relates to the Boeing 737 MAX, we take the opportunity to consider if larger quality system issues are the root of recent aircraft problems. Lee discusses the certification criteria used for the 737 MAX and the possible impact of a long legacy design history.
Lee explains why OEMs come to AeroTEC for services, and he tells us about some of the new initiatives, such as electric aircraft projects with magniX (see episode 524 where we talked with CEO Roei Ganzarski) and Eviation. He also touches on the Supersonic Flight Alliance which seeks to provide a space for responsible supersonic development in Washington State.
Lee has been personally involved in the testing, engineering, and certification of over 50 major aerospace projects, including Aviation Partners’ Blended Winglets on the B737, B757, and B767 as well as Gulfstream, Hawker, and Falcon aircraft. Lee also worked on the Lockheed Martin Cooperative Avionics Test Bed (CATB) 737-300 with F35 (JSF) systems, the Hawker Beechcraft King Air 250, and the Mitsubishi MRJ type certificate.
Prior to starting AeroTEC in 2003, Lee was flight test manager at Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) and before that he was a lead engineer at Aircraft Engineering Specialists (AES).
Lee is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst College of Engineering and has earned credentials as an FAA DER, as well a private multi-engine instrument pilot’s license.
Boeing expects to resume 737 Max deliveries in December and commercial service green light in January
Boeing said 737 MAX deliveries should resume in early December 2019. Airlines could start flying the plane in January. Recently, Southwest Airlines and American Airlines pulled the 737 MAX from their schedules until early March. A Boeing spokesman said, “We know they need more time to get their fleets ready and pilots trained, but the plane and training [approvals] will both be done by January, permitting commercial service.” The Federal Aviation Administration reiterated that its officials “have set no timeframe for when the work will be completed.”
A new Privacy ICAO Address (PIA) will be available on January 1, 2020, on 1090 MHz ADSB-Out in U.S. domestic airspace. This will happen in two phases: First, business and general aviation operators will be able to apply for the program directly through the FAA. Later, the FAA will transition the service to a “third-party service provider.” The FAA commented, “The NBAA and members of the GA community have cited the lack of privacy as a barrier to ADS-B Out equipage. In order to mitigate these concerns, the FAA has initiated the Privacy ICAO Address program with the objective of improving the privacy of aircraft operators in today’s ADS-B environment by limiting the extent to which the aircraft can be quickly and easily identified by non-U.S. government entities, while ensuring there is no adverse effect on ATC services.”
New low-cost carrier PLAY will operate the A320 family, flying both passenger and freight. As did WOW, the airline plans to fly east and west from Iceland. When the fleet grows to six by spring serving Europe, PLAY will then look at North American routes in the Summer. See also Play Plans to Expand Fast.
An expecting couple planned to have an Air Tractor 602 aerial application aircraft spray pink dyed water to announce they would be having a girl. That part worked, but what happened next was unplanned.
Reporter-at-large Launchpad Marzari speaks with Nick Widenkoff at Wings Over Dallas about the first Air Force One, an Aero Commander. To learn more about this aircraft, visit Ike’s Bird and the Commemorative Air Force.
Austin Meyer’s Evolution Turboprop.
We take a look at the new Garmin Autoland system and re-discover the Interceptor 400 pressurized turboprop. Also, Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg and the congressional hearings, a fatal accident at a radio control soaring competition, flying lessons funded by British Airways, and the Labour Party wants to ban private jets that use fossil fuel. We celebrate Veteran’s Day by honoring two WWII vets and discuss some great topics raised in listener feedback.
Garmin® revolutionizes the aviation industry with the first Autoland system for general aviation aircraft
In the event of an emergency such as pilot incapacitation, the Garmin Autoland system can be activated for an autonomous landing of the aircraft. The system determines the most optimal airport and runway, taking into account factors such as weather, terrain, obstacles and aircraft performance statistics. Garmin Autoland can also activate automatically if it feels the pilot is unresponsive. Cirrus and Piper Aircraft announced they’ll implement the system.
The Interceptor 400 pressurized turboprop was not a commercial success – perhaps it was ahead of its time. Recently the plane was discovered “carefully stored in obscurity on a farm in Wichita, Kansas.” The Interceptor 400 is for sale, along with the airplane’s FAA type certificate, drawings, jigs and tooling.
In five-hour grilling over 737 MAX crashes, House panel reveals Boeing memos, calls on CEO Muilenburg to resign
‘I would walk before I would get on a 737 MAX’: Boeing CEO Muilenburg faces hostility but gets through first day of hearings
Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg appeared before the US Congress, admitting that “we made mistakes, we got some things wrong.” At the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing, several asked for Muilenburg to step down. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn. accused Boeing of “a pattern of deliberate concealment” and said, “Boeing came to my office shortly after the accidents and said they were the result of pilot errors. Those pilots never had a chance.”
David Cortina: United States remote control glider pilot freed on bail after accident that killed a woman in Pingtung County, Taiwan
At the F3F Radio Control Soaring (Slope) World Cup in Taiwan, the remote control glider operated by an American pilot struck a woman and killed her. At the time, she was holding her 2-year-old son, who sustained a cut on his neck.
In partnership with The Air League Trust, British Airways plans to fund flying lessons for 200 UK students in 2020. The airline funded lessons for students in a 2019 trial at Booker Aviation Flying School. Next year, the program will expand to other flying schools.
If the Labour party wins the election, they might ban private jets from UK airports starting as soon as 2025. After a report found that sector produced the equivalent carbon emissions of 450,000 cars each year, Andy McDonald, the shadow transport secretary, said “The multi-millionaires & billionaires who travel by private jet are doing profound damage to the climate, and it’s the rest of us who’ll suffer the consequences. A phase-out date for the use of fossil fuel private jets is a sensible proposal.”
Micah presents “Solon’s Gone,” a story about a veteran who flew B-24 Liberators in the Pacific during World War II.
Solon Graham, top left standing – with crew.
Max and Micah interview Richard Hammond, age 96, who was a B-17 Tail Gunner in the Second World War.
Pig Chaser and crew. Standing, l-r: Robert A. Pherson, right waist gunner; Floyd Crow, top turret gunner and flight engineer; Howell T. MacFarland, left waist gunner; Richard Hammond, tail gunner; Merle Crawfoot, radio operator; John Zdunek, Ball Turret gunner. Kneeling, front row (left to right): Don Wise, Bombardier; Arnold Watrous, Pilot; Clarence Bose, co-Pilot; Paul Moore, Navigator.
The chief engineer on the Bell V-280 Valor tiltrotor talks about the program. Also, FAA revokes repair station certificate for Lion Air 737 MAX AOA sensor supplier, airline cabin crew stories: streaming video from a lav, crew arrests for money laundering, and fainting flight attendants.
The U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team, crew chief of the T-38 Spirit of Alliance. Also, internal Boeing 737 MAX messages, 20-hour non-stop from New York to Sydney, German airfare taxes, aviation travel perks, registering a foreign plane in the U.S.
Airtime video series provides insights into innovators and disruptors, including Dale Klapmeier. Also, FAA Women In Aviation Advisory Board, AR and VR market in aviation, Air Safety Institute GA Accident Analysis, Porsche and Boeing collaborate on UAM.
The crash of the Collings Foundation B-17 and our interview with pilot Mac McCauley, recorded one week prior to the fatal crash. NTSB recommendations for the FAA, ICAO’s push with the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation, tariffs on Airbus, airliners make emergency landings.
Manual piloting skill erosion, pickle fork cracks on the B737NG, EC review of Boeing’s plan to buy into Embraer, R44 helicopter crash, “MCAS-like” system on K-47, passive radar tracks stealth fighters, a Delta stake in LATAM, emotional support animals.
The Boeing 737 MAX: congressional investigations, changing the certification process, and regulatory agency harmony. Also, Canadian airline mergers, green aviation, COMAC developments, the collapse of Thomas Cook, Belgian F-16 crash, Chuck Yeager sues Airbus.
B-2 stealth bomber film from the cockpit in flight and a television series examining the US military global nuclear mission in the 21st century. Also, Heathrow protest, UAE views on 737 MAX, Boeing 707 to Australia, spilled coffee diverts a flight.
Sonia Greteman on the new book Wichita: Where Aviation Took Wing. Interviews from Dorkfest with UA CEO Oscar Munoz, Courtney & Isaac. Different 737 Max viewpoints between regulators, GA and hurricane Dorian, the last Red Bull Air Race.
Interviews about aerospace journalism, a hybrid car/airplane, the Piper Pilot 100 series aircraft, Stratux ADS-B, the Electric Jetpack, and a Wings and Wheels event at an aviation museum.
DOT Safety Oversight and Certification Advisory Committee, British Airways pilot strike, B757 compressor stall, snake in the airport, Chinese stealth bomber, AirVenture North 40 flight line operations, airshow review, and listener dream plane rides.
FAA NextGen portfolio manager, InfiniteFlight CEO, the crew of NOAA WP-3D Orion hurricane hunter, a decorated WWII pilot, an aviation-themed hotel, fuel cell-powered airplane, China Lake Naval Air Weapons Station, A-10 Warthog, landing an A321 in a cornfield.
Airshare COO Harry Mitchel talks about fractional jet ownership and aircraft management. Also, ADS-B equipage biz jets, C-130 grounding, airplane hacking security alert from DHS, airport noise, Southwest program to create career paths for pilots.
The 100-year history of GE Aviation, the path forward for electric planes, hidden city ticketing, Boeing plans to employ a second flight computer on the 737 MAX, an employment cutback at ICON Aircraft, a successful English Channel crossing on a flyboard.
Circumnavigating the globe in a Pilatus PC-12. Allegiant seat pitch, fuel dump ruins a runway, 737 MAX fallout, a hoverboard across the Channel, FAA administrator confirmed, the PLANE Act, Chinese aircraft carriers.
The director of the Portland International Jetport on airport development, noise, attracting airlines. Also, A321neo pitch problem, an airline seat idea, a PAX banned for life, electric airplane pre-orders, the Owls Head Transportation Museum, a young CAP cadet, and a retired pilot.
A project to present photos and stories of vintage aviation. Also, Zunum closes shop, FAA publishes new ADS-B pre-flight policy, GE9X engine recognized by Guinness Book of World Records, aviation in the environmentalist crosshairs, the latest on “DB” Cooper, a rebranding of the 737 MAX or maybe not, a hotel room with a full flight simulator.
President of VREF on aircraft valuation. A new Fat Albert, electric airplane from André Borschberg, EASA & 737 MAX, additive manufacturing, supersonic flight emissions, Boeing T-X experimental test pilot, major general with Japanese Ministry of Defense.
Boom Supersonic’s facility for the Overture Mach-2.2 supersonic aircraft. Bombardier exits commercial aviation, government probe of the 787, UTC hybrid-electric regional plane, 14-year-old flew a glider cross country solo, PPG at the Paris Air Show.
What to expect at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2019. In the news, we discuss a woman trapped in an airliner, crosswind testing in Iceland, the Boeing 737 MAX grounding, and the Paris Air Show.
Interviews from the annual Innovations in Flight Family Day and Outdoor Aviation Display held at the Smithsonian's National Air & Space Museum at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia.
Microsoft Flight Simulator returns, the operations manager and the chief pilot of Skydive Spaceland San Marcos, Boeing 737 slats issue, value of business jets, proposed Raytheon and United Technologies merger, airport facial scans, electric hybrid Cessna 337 Skymaster.
An airplane geek goes skydiving, a talk about the Spurwink Farm Pancake Breakfast & Fly-In, a proud papa talks with a new Civil Air Patrol cadet, more on cryogenic hydrogen fuel cells for electric airplanes. An eVTOL with a 400-mile range, CBS interview with Boeing CEO, assumptions made during 737 MAX design and certification, trapping flight attendants in the plane.
Upcoming Innovations in Flight Family Day and Aviation Display, aviation tour of Pacific Northwest, Micah’s update of his piece on flight sims, the D-Day Squadron in Connecticut, Launchpad’s connection to Normandy invasion, smoke oil.
Interviews from the Museum of Flight in Seattle, Washington. Also, one pilot for the NMA, airline deals in Canada, more European airline failures, cryogenic hydrogen fuel cell, an app for bumping, special paint jobs, USAF aggressor squadron F-35A’s.
Interviews from the 2019 Planes of Fame Air Show and Commemorative Air Force support crew. Also, 737 Max AOA Disagree alert, pilot training with virtual reality, Airbus A380s being parted out, pilot identified in fatal Northrop N9MB Flying Wing crash.
Interviews from Sun ‘n Fun 2019: Aerospace Center of Excellence, family-owned aircraft interiors company, a high school student funds his pilot training, flight operations software company, a competitive glider pilot.
AOPA Foundation You Can Fly initiatives create a stronger and safer pilot community. Also, Cirrus SF50 Vision Jet grounded, CFMI Leap engine coking issue, Boeing 787 Dreamliner production quality, N9M flying wing fatal crash, ADS-B and accident rates.
The Civil Air Patrol, noncommissioned officers in aviation, the V-22 Osprey. Last Doolittle Raider passes, F-35A recovery, SOCOM and light attack aircraft, Stratolaunch first flight, Ethiopian AOA sensor, reduced seat recline, 60 electric airplane order.
Champaign Aviation Museum restoration work, volunteers, the role of aviation museums. 737 safety cards, Scaled Composites Model 401, flight attendant trip brokering, Wow Air, Collier Trophy winner. 2019 SUN ‘n FUN Fly-in and Expo.
Live at the 2019 SUN 'n FUN International Fly-in and Expo