May 14, 2013david
Like most Avgeeks, I love seeing a new plane. It really doesn’t matter if it is big, small, fast, or slow, I just love planes. I came across a new plane from European manufacturer Tecnam that looks like an interesting combination of a couple of other planes. The P2010 by Tecnam is currently going through the certification process and is looking to gain certification from the FAA and EASA at the same time.
Looking at the pictures on their website, I can’t help but notice how much it looks like a cross between a Cesna 172 and a Cirrus SR22. Either way I think it looks like a cool plane, and would love to fly one some day. Here is the description from the Tecnam website:
The Tecnam P Twenty-Ten brings together an advanced technology all carbon fibre fuselage with a metal wing to deliver a superlative single engined, 4 seat aeroplane, designed by Italy’s most innovative Aerospace design ‘guru’ Professor Luigi Pascale.
Powered by the well proven and reliable Lycoming IO-360-M1a (‘Lycoming Light’) engine, providing 180HP and 2700RPM. The Tecnam P Twenty-Ten has a high fuel capacity (240 litres). The fuel tanks are installed in the wing box, behind the main spar, to preserve their integrity in case of an accident. Of course carbon fibre equals a lighter and therefore more fuel efficient aeroplane.
Tecnam has always put the comfort for both pilots and passengers first. The Tecnam P Twenty-Ten with its spacious interior and its generous luggage compartment of 300 litres has been designed to be both a very enjoyable aeroplane to fly cross country as well as a robust trainer. The cabin width also allows for a large instrument panel, with its modular design specifically tailored to allow customers to fit either an analogue or digital instrumentation package.
It is interesting how rapidly the aviation industry is being taken over by carbon fiber. It is not surprising with all of its valuable properties, but I don’t think there has been another technology that has come on so rapidly in my memory.
The plane just looks sleek and sexy. It is obviously still a ways of way from actually reaching the market but I would not be surprised to see Tecnam become a more common name in the industry with more aircraft like this.Tags: EASA Certification • FAA Certification • IO-360-M1a • P2010 • P2010 Pictures • Tecnam
March 8, 2013
Young Girl Taking Her First Ride in an Airplane a Reminder of Where Women of Aviation Week Should be FocusingWritten by: david
Today is International Women’s Day which is closing out Women of Aviation Week. Two very important events that bring attention to those most wonderful of creatures: women; and an even more special group: female aviators.
There have been all kinds of different events all week that are geared towards getting girls excited about aviation, and recognizing the women that do some much to make aviation an industry where women can grow to their full potential. The industry would truly be lacking were it not for all of the women involved.
While the video below may not have been specifically designed as an event for Women of Aviation Week, it no doubt had a special impact on that sweet little girl. This is the kind of stuff that needs to take place if we are to get girls excited about aviation.
It is so awesome to watch her apprehension as they are getting ready to take off, and then how it instantly turns to pure joy at lift-off. I must say I know exactly how she feels. I felt the same way on my first flight, and have felt that same feeling over and over again practically every time I fly.
I won’t bore you with anymore commentary, but please take 5 minutes and watch this video. It nearly brought tears to my eyes thinking about when I will be able to do the same with my daughter some day.
February 26, 2013david
add to del.icio.us
Two Aircraft Set Four Unconfirmed City-Pair Records En Route To Air Show
MELBOURNE, Victoria, Australia, February 25, 2013 — Gulfstream Aerospace Corp.’s two newest aircraft arrived in Australia Monday to participate in the company’s static display at Avalon 2013, an air show and defense exhibition in Geelong, Victoria. It’s the first time both the super mid-sized Gulfstream G280 and the ultra-large-cabin, ultra-long-range G650 have been in Australia.
“We’re thrilled to be able to show these two aircraft to our customers in Australia,” said Scott Neal, senior vice president, Sales and Marketing, Gulfstream. “It’s an opportunity for customers to see firsthand the tremendous capabilities of the G280 and G650, including speed, range, safety, reliability and comfort.”
The two aircraft demonstrated their speed and range en route to Australia, setting a series of potential city-pair records. The G650 set a world record between Honolulu and Auckland, flying 3,868 nm (7,164 km) in 7 hours and 57 minutes. Once approved by the National Aeronautic Association, this record will join eight others already set by the G650.
The G280 set three pending records en route to Avalon. The aircraft took off at maximum weight from Carlsbad, Calif., where it demonstrated its takeoff capabilities from the short runway (4,897 ft/1,492 m). It then flew six people (three passengers and three crew) to Honolulu, a distance of 2,322 nm (4,300 km), in 5 hours and 31 minutes at an average speed of Mach 0.83. The aircraft flew the 2,292 nm (4,245 km) from Honolulu to Pago Pago in 5 hours and 12 minutes at an average speed of Mach 0.83. The flight from Pago Pago to Melbourne, a distance of 2,846 nm (5,270 km), took 7 hours and 16 minutes, at an average speed of Mach 0.80 The G280 has set 22 city-pair records since it entered service in 2012.
The aircraft’s appearance at Avalon 2013 is part of a world demonstration tour intended to introduce the two aircraft to customers. Since entering service in November 2012, the G280 demonstrator has visited 65 cities in 15 countries, accumulating more than 340 flight hours. Its longest nonstop flight was from Savannah to London, a journey of 3,676 nm (6,808 km).
The G650 flies farther, faster and with a larger, more comfortable cabin than any other business jet in service. The G650 world demonstration tour began in mid-January and has already visited 28 locations in six countries, covering 40,000 nm (74,000 km).
Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), designs, develops, manufactures, markets, services and supports the world’s most technologically advanced business-jet aircraft. Gulfstream has produced more than 2,000 aircraft for customers around the world since 1958. To meet the diverse transportation needs of the future, Gulfstream offers a comprehensive fleet of aircraft, comprising the wide-cabin, high-speed Gulfstream G150®; the new large-cabin, mid-range Gulfstream G280®; the large-cabin, long-range Gulfstream G450®; the large-cabin, ultra-long-range Gulfstream G550® and the ultra-large-cabin, ultra-long-range G650®. Gulfstream also offers aircraft ownership services via Gulfstream Pre-Owned Aircraft Sales®. The company employs more than 12,500 people at 12 major locations. We invite you to visit our website for more information and photos of Gulfstream aircraft at www.gulfstream.com.
General Dynamics, headquartered in Falls Church, Virginia, is a market leader in business aviation; land and expeditionary combat systems, armaments and munitions; shipbuilding and marine systems; and information systems and technologies. More information about the company is available on the Internet at www.generaldynamics.com.Tags: Avalon 2013 • City-Pair Speed Records • G280 • G650 • Gulfstream Aerospace
September 27, 2012david
It is interesting to me how various aspects of the aviation industry evolve in unexpected ways. Such is the development of the Cessna 182 JT-A, a diesel version of the traditional 182.
According to Robert Goyer at Flying Magazine diesel versions of general aviation aircraft are going to become more important as 100LL starts to become less available, and possibly even gets eliminated by the EPA. Obviously, there is no way to know when that will happen or how much time will be given to transition, but the one thing we know for sure is the farther along we are in the process the better off general aviation will be.
The way that Robert describes flying this new 182 it makes me want to get my hands on one right now. Having experienced piston driven aircraft as well as turbine driven varieties, there is really no comparison with the feel of s jet engine responding to your throttle inputs. I realize this new version is not a turbine engine, but it sure sounds close.
Combine the need to replace 100LL and the improved performance of this new model, and they should be literally flying out of the factory.Tags: 100LL Replacement • Cessna 182 JT-A • Diesel Powered Cessna 182 • Flying Magazine • Robert Goyer
April 3, 2012david
Small local airports are one of the fun things about aviation. With all of the advances in technology, they are the place where aviation’s roots can still be found. It is where stories are shared amongst people who simply love aviation.
While it can be hard to put into words the value of such an airport, Krista Ramsey of Cincinnati.com wrote a wonderful piece about the Blue Ash Airport near Cincinnati that is scheduled to close in June.
I don’t know the dynamics of that specific situation, but it is a tragedy to me that we are losing these sites. There is really no way to quantify their value to a community. If you base it strictly on dollars and cents then keeping the airport really doesn’t make much sense, but if you consider overall value then there is no way small airports like this should close.
Aviation has lost its romantic luster in modern days, and it is a real pity. We need these little airports that bring aviation into everyday life for so many people. They provide experiences that could never be had at JFK, LAX, or O’Hare.
Please share your experiences at small airports so that we can keep these amazing sites alive, if not in reality, at least in our hearts and minds.Tags: Aviation History • Blue Ash Airport • Cincinnati Airports • Community Airports • Krista Ramsey • Local Airports
March 27, 2012david
As I sit in my house getting ready for work listening to the Blue Angels practice, like they do every Tuesday and Thursday, I can’t help but wish I was getting ready to go to Sun ‘N Fun. Obviously, most people would rather enjoy a day in sunny Florida admiring airplanes and enjoying the atmosphere of such an event, but I am around planes everyday.
Like I said, I get to see the Blue Angels practice a couple of times a week. I work in military aviation, and I really enjoy it. It is worth all of the long days, the changing schedules, and the general frustration that goes along with any flying career. That being said, sometimes we need to get away from the work side of it, and enjoy the fun of it.
If I was in a position to own a small plane and go out and enjoy it, then I would do that, but what I really want right now is to enjoy the fun of an air show. Just being around the people at air shows that love aircraft is so awesome. It is not a competition or a challenge where we are looking for a winner, it is simply a celebration of flight and all of the wonder that it entails.
Flying was born on the dreams of adventurous men and women who did it because they loved it, not because it was really profitable. It has proved to be profitable for many people, but that is not where its roots are. It is rooted in the hearts and dreams of every little boy and girl who dreams of touching the sky and experiencing what relatively few people have.
Many of those dreams were born at an air show that was visited with a parent who has that love of aviation and wants to share it with the next generation. I hope that everyone who has the chance to attend Sun ‘N Fun this week has a great time and is able to enjoy the wonder that is aviation. I guess there is always next year for me.
I would love to live vicariously through you and hear about some of the experiences being had. What is your favorite part of an air show?Tags: Air Shows • Aviation • Blue Angels • Dream of Flying • Military Aviation • SNF12 • Sun 'N Fun 2012
March 26, 2012david
The debate over user fees has calmed somewhat since the initial release of the 2013 budget that wants to include them. While user fees will likely become more of an issue as the actual passage of the budget comes up, it is important to look at what other options there may be in place of user fees.
At the Hilton Head Airport in South Carolina they were able to create a solution to prevent user fees but still increase revenue for the county. The specific numbers of the deal can be found in this article from IslandPacket.com. What I like about the situation is that the parties involved were able to get together to find a mutually beneficial solution.
That is the problem that I have with user fees in general: supporters seem to think that user fees are a quick fix for a problem that is much more complicated than just money. They are not willing to put forth the time and effort to come up with real solutions, they just want more money.
This solution may not work at other airports, but if the airports, FBO’s, and cities/counties would all just sit down and work together they could come up with systems that would provide the necessary funds without overburdening anyone. Of course we must also consider the FAA and federal government, but they should be no different. Instead of looking for a quick fix for a long-standing problem, do some work and come up with a solution that everyone can be okay with.
Few will argue that there are not financial concerns when it comes to aviation in general, and air traffic control in particular, which should also mean that people can be reasonable when it comes to developing solutions. Like most government programs it likely needs to be a tightening of belts along with an increase in revenue, but what we definitely don’t need is a short-term fix for a long-term problem.Tags: 2013 Federal Budget • Aviation Funding • Aviation User Fees • Hilton Head Airport • Island Packet • User Fee Debate • User Fee Solutions
March 12, 2012david
The Cessna Citation M2 made its first test flight on Friday and was met with all of the typical quotes from the people involved. They talked about how it performed just as expected and how it will be such a blessing to their customers.
That’s great that everything went so well, but I for one have to wonder if Cessna really needs another aircraft. According to the press release from Cessna, the M2 “fills the gap between the Citation Mustang and the Citation CJ family”. Exactly how big of a gap do they think exists there. If you look at the Mustang, various CJ aircraft, and the new M2, most people would be hard pressed to tell you the difference.
I understand that the avionics is an upgrade over previous aircraft, but do you really need an entirely new aircraft to roll out some new avionics? How about upgrading one of your existing aircraft instead of coming out with a new aircraft every other year?
Cessna is THE American aircraft company in my eyes. They cover pretty much the entire general aviation market with the exception of the airline size aircraft. They make great aircraft that are a testament to the quality of American manufacturing, but this constant roll out of new aircraft almost makes them look desperate.
Maybe I am forgetting someone, but I can’t think of a single aircraft manufacturer that offers half as many business jets as Cessna. I would start listing them all, but just the thought of it makes my head hurt. Most companies offer 5-10 aircraft at the very most, but without even trying I can think of at least 20 jet aircraft that Cessna offers.
You have to wonder if spreading out so much is hurting their business. Instead of just focusing on a smaller number of aircraft and making them awesome, I get the feeling that they are trying to be a jack of all trades, but master of none.
It also seems to me that people almost start ignoring new aircraft from Cessna because there are so many of them.
I really hope that this does help their business as Cessna is a very important company in this country, I just can’t help but wonder what they are trying to accomplish with releasing new aircraft all the time.Tags: American Aircraft Companies • Cessna Business Jets • Cessna Citation M2 • Citation CJ • Citation Mustang • New Cessna Aircraft
February 16, 2012david
add to del.icio.us
User fees seem to be the simple answer for so many people in Washington who have no real understanding of what general aviation does for this country. They think it is all about rich people cruising around in their big expensive jets on vacation, and while those people do exist, the vast majority of general aviation is in support of business both big and small.
Rep Mike Pompeo of Kansas is a long-time advocate for general aviation. That is not too shocking seeing as how he comes from Wichita, KS which is home to companies like Cessna, Learjet, and Beechcraft; as well as being the birthplace of Air Force One. He gives a great response to President Obama’s proposed budget which includes user fees for general aviation. Here is the video:
Like so many types of regulation in this government, user fees will hurt the little guys. Big companies write off fees like this as nothing, or they find a loophole to get out of paying them entirely.
A better idea for funding aviation is to create a more efficient system that doesn’t throw away money on things like replacing the uniforms for all of TSA for millions of dollars. There are plenty of areas where cuts could be made, or money could be generated, but the people making decisions are too clouded by their own special interests.
What type of an impact do you think user fees would have on an already struggling industry?Tags: Aviation User Fees • Beechcraft • Cessna • General Aviation • Learjet • President Obama's Budget • Rep Mike Pompeo • TSA • User Fee Impact Video
- Air Traffic Control
- Aviation Regulation
- Aviation Security
- Business Aviation
- Commercial Aviation
- General Aviation
add to del.icio.us
It is amazing how something so good can happen at the same time as something so dumb. On Tuesday, President Obama signed into law the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 which provides four years and $63.4-billion in funding for the FAA. This follows 23 short-term funding bills over the past five years.
All of the experts applauded this action as it provides a certain amount of stability for an organization that has been in limbo for half of a decade. Most people overlook the fact that the lack of funding for the FAA has also meant a lack of funding for a lot of very important airport development projects.
The irony of the situation is that just the day before, on Monday, President Obama released a budget that included user fees of $100 per flight as well as increasing the passenger security fee from as low as $2.50 to as high as $7.50 over the next 6 years. This increase could cause very serious issues for an industry that is still struggling in a variety of ways.
It is amazing to me that you could do something so detrimental the day before doing something so valuable.
The first concern is obviously money. Aviation companies, both commercial and business, are struggling to make ends meet in any way that they can. Commercial airlines will not be affected quite as much since they will simply pass the fee on to the passengers which they won’t really notice either since the $100 per flight will spread out to less than a dollar for most flights.
The security fee will be worse, but again, airlines will pass it along to the passengers, and with the high price of tickets most people will simply write it off. But I know that I for one am tired of paying more and more for plane tickets.
Bigger business aviation companies will also not feel the pinch nearly as much since $100 really isn’t that big of a deal when you are dropping tens of thousands of dollars on fuel for every trip. The real pain will be felt by the little guys who have less of an impact on fuel purchases, but who are responsible for a much larger portion of the total flights.
These smaller jets routinely purchase only a few hundred dollars worth of fuel because that is all they need. They also fight tooth and nail to not pay landing fees at FBO’s because even $50 more for each flight makes a huge difference to their bottom line. Having worked at an FBO I have seen how hard these guys fight for every dollar, because they have to.
Now they are proposing that these users pay an additional $100 for each and every flight, if they fly in controlled airspace. Talk about a gray area. Even people who teach aviation have a tough time defining what exactly controlled airspace is.
Does that mean that every little single-engine prop is going to have to come up with an extra $100 for every flight when they are only spending $50 on fuel? But this becomes a much bigger issue than just money.
If the choice is between paying $100 and simply flying VFR instead of IFR, then what choice are most of these little guys going to make? A lot of them are flying short legs anyways, so how hard is it to just fly VFR? The vast majority of passengers won’t even realize that their safety is at risk as opposed to being under the control of air traffic controllers.
They use the excuse that aviation needs to pay for its own security, which in principle I don’t have any problem with. The problem that I have is that the government continues to impose new rules and regulations and then expecting users to just eat the costs. In reality, how much safer are we now than we used to be?
My own personal feelings about TSA will have to wait for another day, but the point is that the government once again feels that throwing money at a problem will be a solution despite all of the evidence to the contrary. Look at most government-funded programs and you will see that money is generally not the real issue.
So, while I am ecstatic that the FAA is now funded for a period that will allow some serious work to take place on NextGen ATC, and a bunch of other badly needed development, I hate to see that the government is asking for even more of a sacrifice from an industry that is already struggling. Pretty much every sector is struggling, and they all need to make changes and pull their own weight, but the changes to these fees simply is not the answer.Tags: Aviation Funding • Aviation User Fees • FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 • FAA Reauthorization Bill • Federal Budget • NextGen ATC • Passenger Security Fee • President Obama • TSA