Schlagwort-Archive: aviation

Annual Aviation Career Day

As the aviation industry continues to grow and evolve, educational institutions like California Aeronautical University (CAU) must prepare future pilots and aircraft maintenance technicians for success. With a commitment to providing exceptional education and hands-on experience, CAU has been a leading force in shaping the future of flight. Their efforts were on full display at the sixth Annual Aviation Career Day held at the CAU campus in Bakersfield, California.

CAU’s Aviation Career Day is an opportunity for high school students, aviation enthusiasts and industry professionals to come together and learn more about the exciting world of aviation. This year’s event was a resounding success, with over 900 attendees and representatives from various organizations in the aviation industry. Among them were airline partners, aircraft manufacturers, and government agencies.

One of the highlights of this year’s career day was a panel discussion led by CAU President Matthew Johnston. The panel included five experienced industry professionals who shared their insights and answered questions from the students. This Q&A session provided a unique opportunity for students to interact with individuals who have established successful careers in aviation.

The panellists represented various sectors of the aviation industry. They shared their journeys and offered valuable advice to the students on how to succeed in this competitive field. The panellists also discussed the current state of the aviation industry and its prospects, giving students a realistic understanding of what it takes to thrive in this dynamic field. Source: ‚AOPA‚.

Training goes electric at New Vision Aviation

Nonprofit aviation education and flight school organization New Vision Aviation can now provide flight training in the group’s four Pipistrel Electro trainers thanks to an eight-year public-private collaboration to prove electric aircraft can be suitable for flight training. Located at the Fresno Chandler Executive Airport, New Vision Aviation, headed by President and CEO Joseph Oldham, has provided flight training and aviation industry education to young people from disadvantaged communities in the San Joaquin Valley in California since 2018.

New Vision Aviation has been training students in its Cessna 150, Cessna 172, and Interstate Cadet, and now, thanks to the FAA special light sport aircraft exemption, can finally use its fleet of electric Pipistrel Alpha Electros for flight training. Oldham is a general aviation pilot with a background in electric transportation who started the Sustainable Aviation Project (SAP), which received a million-dollar county transportation authority grant in 2016. New Vision Aviation was created to implement and complete the project.

The aircraft were delivered in March of 2018, FAA regulations that do not allow for electric powerplants in light sport aircraft precluded the use of those aircraft for flight training. Before issuing the exemption, the FAA told Oldham to gather data that proved the aircraft were safe. To get started, Pipistrel provided data loggers that plugged into the aircraft’s onboard computer to record flight data. That data went back to Pipistrel, where it was analyzed and put into charts that showed battery and other performance parameters. The process required Oldham to fly one of the aircraft for 100 hours to gather data, which proved difficult considering he was only able to get about 40 minutes of flight time on a full charge. Eventually, an engineer from another company working on electric aircraft suggested flying at a speed to optimize lift over drag, instead of what Pipistrel recommended for cruise speed, and eventually, Oldham was able to achieve an hour plus of flight time per charge, making the 100-hour mark more attainable. The FAA also dispatched an engineer to run specific tests with the aircraft, working in collaboration with Pipistrel to ensure the flights weren’t damaging the system in any way.

Oldham submitted the petition in September of 2019 and in June of 2023, the FAA reached out to let him know it was working on the petition and needed him to make a few small corrections. On January 22, Oldham finally received the news that his petition for exemption had been granted. Before New Vision Aviation can begin training with the Pipistrel fleet, the aircraft needs to go through an annual inspection and be recertified by an FAA-designated airworthiness representative). In the meantime, Oldham says the condition of the aircraft batteries needs to be analyzed, and some may need replacing. He hopes to have at least one of the aircraft ready to fly in 30 days. Source / entire report: ‚Niki Britton on AOPA USA‚.

Lehrgang für Elektro-Antriebe

Wir bieten am 02. und 03.02.2024 eine zweitägige Fortbildung an. Der Lehrgang bringt den Teilnehmern am Beispiel des Antriebs der Antares 21E die Besonderheiten elektrischer Antriebsysteme näher. Sie umfasst einen theoretischen und praktischen Teil. Folgende Inhalte werden vermittelt:

  • Theoretischer Teil:
  • Elektrisches Antriebsystem am Beispiel der Antares 21E
  • Grundstruktur des Elektrischen Systems der Antares
  • Bedienkonzepte
  • Antriebsmotor und Leistungselektronik
  • Batteriemanagement
  • Weitere Besonderheiten
  • Prüfungen
  • Umfassende elektrische Prüfung
  • Technische Mitteilungen
  • Wartungsintervalle
  • Praktischer Teil:
  • Lokalisierung von Systemen und Modulen
  • Aus- und Einbau von Batterien
  • Durchführung einer umfassenden elektrischen Prüfung

Die Teilnehmerzahl ist auf 16 Teilnehmer beschränkt. Der praktische Teil wird in 2 Gruppen zu je max. 8 Teilnehmern durchgeführt. Die Kosten der Teilnahme sind 330,00 Euro netto. Für Anmeldungen und Rückfragen kontaktieren Sie uns bitte über info@lange-aviation.com. Wir bieten diese Weiterbildung bereits seit 2016 an. Quelle: ‚Lange-Aviation‚.

Pilatus übernimmt MRO-Aktivitäten und Mitarbeitende von Aero Centers Epps

Epps Aviation wurde 1965 gegründet und ist seit 1996 ein Autorisiertes Pilatus Verkaufs- und Service Center. Pilatus wird ab 2024 dessen Pilatus Verkaufs- und Unterhaltsaktivitäten (MRO) übernehmen und eigenständig weiterführen. Der Betrieb des Pilatus Service Centers wird bis zum Abschluss der Transaktion durch Epps weitergeführt. Die rund 40 Mitarbeitenden werden durch die Pilatus Gruppe übernommen.

Aero Center Epps hat den Sitz in Atlanta am DeKalb-Peachtree Airport und bietet Verkaufsaktivtäten und Wartungsdienstleitungen für Pilatus Flugzeuge an der US-Südostküste an. Im vergangenen Jahr wurde Epps von SAR Trilogy Management, LLC übernommen. Im Zusammenhang mit dieser Akquisition hat sich die neue Eigentümerin entschlossen, die Pilatus Wartungs- und Reparaturdienstleistungen (MRO) zu veräussern, um sich besser auf ihr nicht Pilatus Flugzeuge betreffendes Wartungs- und Chartergeschäft sowie Flugzeugmanagement konzentrieren zu können.

Um den erstklassigen Support für die Kundschaft sicherzustellen, hat Pilatus entschieden, die Pilatus MRO-Dienstleistungen von SAR Trilogy Management, LLC zu erwerben. Es soll auch zukünftig ein umfassender Produktsupport über den gesamten Lebenszyklus eines Pilatus Flugzeugs garantiert werden. Dazu zählen Wartungs- und Instandhaltungsservices inklusive Avionik sowie Ersatzteilverkäufe für den einmotorigen PC-12 und den zweimotorigen PC-24 Super Versatile Jet. Quelle: ‚Pilatus‚.

Rolls-Royce tests its first hydrogen-powered plane engine

A modern plane engine has been powered by hydrogen fuel for the first time — putting the aviation industry a step closer to its goal of going green. The challenge: Aviation is responsible for 1.9% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. When you compare that to, say, ground transportation, which is responsible for 11.9%, the industry doesn’t seem like a major part of our climate crisis. However, there is a straightforward way to decarbonize ground transportation: transition to electric vehicles, while decarbonizing the electric grid. We don’t have a comparable plan for aviation.

Aviation is responsible for 1.9% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions.
The use of sustainable aviation fuel, made from biomass, can reduce an aircraft’s emissions by as much as 80%, but it doesn’t eliminate them. Today’s batteries, meanwhile, can power small planes on short flights, but they’re too heavy for large jets or longer trips. We need to figure out some way to do better than that, though, as UN experts predict emissions from aviation could triple by 2050, due to the steady increase of passenger and freight air transport.

The idea: Hydrogen fuel is a promising alternative for the aviation industry. It provides much more power by weight than batteries, and unlike other jet fuels, it doesn’t produce any lasting greenhouse emissions when burned — the only byproduct is water. If the fuel can be made to work with existing engines, it would also avoid the need to replace aircraft or engines to mitigate emissions.

What’s new? Now, British engineering firm Rolls-Royce and the airline easyJet have demonstrated for the first time that a modern plane engine can be safely powered by hydrogen fuel. The companies’ ground test took place at the UK’s Boscombe Down military aircraft testing site, and the engine was a converted Rolls-Royce AE 2100-A turboprop, which is used to power regional aircraft. If additional tests go well, the next step will be ground testing of hydrogen fuel in a Rolls-Royce Pearl 15 jet engine, designed for business jets, before moving on to flight tests. 

The cold H2O: Hydrogen is abundant on Earth, but most of it is tied up with other elements, and the most common technique for producing pure hydrogen pulls it out of methane, releasing carbon dioxide in the process.

Alternatively, an electric current can be used to extract hydrogen from water, leaving behind only oxygen, but the process is expensive, and if the electricity is produced by fossil fuels, the climate benefits of the hydrogen fuel are minimized. Looking ahead: The electricity used to create Rolls-Royce’s hydrogen fuel came from wind and tidal power, but “green hydrogen” like that is scarce. For green hydrogen to play a significant role in aviation, we’ll need to dramatically increase the supply. Thankfully, while Rolls Royce works out the kinks of converting jet engines to run on hydrogen, others are looking for ways to scale up production, such as by using clean geothermal energy sourced from abandoned oil wells to power the process or by extracting hydrogen from saltwater at massive offshore wind farms. Source: ‚freethink.com‚.

European Aviation Environmental Report 2022

The last three years have seen a spotlight shone on the environmental performance of the aviation sector and the future challenges that it faces ensuring a license to operate. The third European Aviation Environmental Report provides an objective overview of the significant developments that have taken place in response to this.

While the sector provides economic benefits, and connectivity, and stimulates innovation, European citizens are becoming increasingly aware of the effect that aviation activities have on their quality of life through climate change, noise and air quality, and many are prepared to act on these concerns. This is especially so on climate change, which is considered by Europeans to be the single most serious problem facing the world. With these challenges also come opportunities for businesses to build their strategies and brand around this key priority of sustainability to reduce their environmental impact and attract a growing market share, talent and investment, as well as empower customers to join the fight against climate change in this decisive decade.

Scaled-up collaboration between public and private stakeholders will also be of the utmost importance to enhance existing measures and identify new ones, that can deliver the European Green Deal objectives. This report provides a clear and accurate source of information to inform and inspire discussions and cooperation in Europe. The long-term future of the aviation sector will depend on the success of this effort. Source and entire report: ‚EASA‚.

Erste PC-12 NGX für Tradewind Aviation

Tradewind Aviation hat ihren ersten PC-12 NGX im Rahmen einer feierlichen Übergabe am Standort der Pilatus Tochtergesellschaft in Broomfield, Colorado, entgegen genommen. Im Laufe der nächsten fünf Jahre werden insgesamt 20 PC-12 NGX an den Hauptsitz von Tradewind in Oxford, Connecticut, ausgeliefert. Pilatus und Tradewind Aviation Mitarbeitende versammelten sich am Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport, um gemeinsam diesen Meilenstein zu feiern. David Zipkin, Mitgründer und Marketingleiter von Tradewind, sagte: «Wir freuen uns sehr über die Auslieferung des ersten von 20 brandneuen Pilatus PC-12 NGX. Tradewind ist der grösste US-Betreiber von PC-12 für private Charterflüge. Diese neuen Flugzeuge bieten uns die Möglichkeit, weiter zu wachsen und unseren Kunden das bestmögliche Flugerlebnis zu gewähren. Der PC-12 NGX bietet die perfekte Kombination aus Effizienz, Komfort und herausragender Leistung. Mit dem PC-12 NGX können schwer erreichbare Ziele schneller angeflogen werden, sodass unsere Kunden wertvolle Reisezeit sparen und sich darauf konzentrieren können, was für sie wirklich wichtig ist.» Die moderneste einmotorige Turboprop-Maschine von Pilatus, der PC-12 NGX, wird Tradewinds Flotte von PC-12 Flugzeugen ergänzen und damit das private Charterangebot in Nordamerika und der Karibik weiter ausbauen. Quelle: ‚Pilatus‚.

Scotland’s Aviation Pioneer Percy Pilcher

You can be forgiven if you do not know who Percy Pilcher was. He was a British 19th-century aviation pioneer who was born in England and worked in Scotland. He has an important place in the early history of aviation – which was close to being much more significant if it were not for his untimely death.

Developing hang gliders in Scotland
Percy Pilcher was born in Bath in England in January 1867. His early years (from just 13 years old) saw him serving in the British Royal Navy, then later becoming an apprentice engineer working at the shipyards in Glasgow, Scotland. His interest and work in aviation began in 1891, after he became a lecturer at Glasgow University, teaching naval architecture and engineering. This was obviously very early days in aviation, years still before the powered flight began. There was plenty of experimentation and work with gliders and flight, however, and he became involved in this.

He built his first glider, the “Bat,” in 1895. After partnering with the experienced US aviation pioneer Otto Lilienthal (often referred to as the “father of aviation” with his successful first glider flights from 1981), he went on to produce three more gliders.

His most successful glider was the “Hawk,” which he developed by 1986, and set the distance record for flight (250 meters) when flown in England. The Hawk was made of fabric, bamboo, and wire (with some of the manufacturing and assembly being done by Percy’s sister, Ella Pilcher. It had a wingspan of 7.51 meters and a total length of 5.64 meters.

A vision for powered flight
As well as gliders and wing design, Pilcher was interested too in powered flight. He designed a triplane that he intended to power with a small combustion engine. Such an aircraft never flew, although his proposal was more than just ideas. He did significant work on engine possibilities. He worked with fellow engineer Walter Gordon Wilson on engine design (for both vehicles and aircraft), which led to the formation of the Wilson-Pilcher Company. Under Wilson’s charge, and after the death of Pilcher, the company produced its first automobile in 1900 and went on to produce several more. It was taken over by Sir W G Armstrong Whitworth & Co Ltd in 1904 (later to become part of Vickers-Armstrongs Limited).

Unfortunate death in a glider accident
It is reported that Pilcher completed his triplane prototype. However, before he was due to demonstrate it to the public for the first time, the engine developed crankshaft problems. The demonstration was on September 30th 1899. Instead of demonstrating the triplane, he instead flew the Hawk glider. Sadly, in the wet weather, the aircraft’s tail snapped (probably due to the saturated fabric). The glider crashed, and Pilcher was killed. Source/entire report: ‚Simple Flying‚.

CubCrafters Moves Forward with Public Offering

CubCrafters, the leading designer and manufacturer of Light-Sport, Experimental, and Part 23 Certified backcountry aircraft, announces today it has been qualified by the Securities Exchange Commission [SEC] to make a $50 million public stock offering using the Regulation A+ exemption, which allows for the first outside investment ever in the history of this iconic company.

Advised by Manhattan Street Capital, CubCrafters intends to raise up to $50 million in investment capital from its fans, customers, aviation enthusiasts, the investment community, and the general public. The offering price for first round investors is $5 per share, with a minimum investment of only $400 per investor. Those interested in this unique opportunity can learn more about the company and participate in the investment at: www.manhattanstreetcapital.com/cubcrafters

“We are humbled and excited by the overwhelming interest and investor demand our capital raise received. In just 90 days, we received reservations for more than $25 million of CubCrafters’ shares,” said Patrick Horgan, CubCrafters’ president & CEO. “This was a great first step in securing the vision of our founder, Jim Richmond, who wanted to give the public an opportunity to participate in the growth of our company. Now that we have been qualified by the SEC, we look forward to welcoming new investors to CubCrafters and working on their behalf to drive long-term shareholder value.”

The high demand for CubCrafters aircraft has resulted in a more than 2-year backlog of orders. The proceeds of the offering will be used to increase manufacturing capacity and reduce new aircraft customer delivery times. The company will also make investments in growing its customer support capabilities and accelerating product innovation. All of which will enable the company to expand its reach in the rapidly growing domestic and international markets for both adventure and utility aircraft.
While many US-based general aviation aircraft manufacturers have been sold to foreign entities, CubCrafters intends to remain American owned and operated. The entire line of CubCrafters aircraft is designed and produced in the company’s facilities in Yakima, WA. To keep it that way, CubCrafters is leveraging this Regulation A+ offering to fund growth while keeping the company US-based.

“We have invested large amounts of time, energy, and resources to qualify a Reg A+ offering with the SEC,” stated Brad Damm, CubCrafters’ vice president. “Our Brand has grown to be synonymous with an adventure lifestyle that inspires and appeals to people at all levels. We consistently hear from people across many different demographics that want to be a part of what we do, that want to join us on our journey. This offering affords that opportunity to everyone, both from within the aviation community and from the public at large.”

“The already significant response from investors and their large and loyal customer base is a strong testimonial to CubCrafters’ role as an industry leader and to the quality of its product line,” added Rod Turner, CEO and founder of Manhattan Street Capital. (*) “I am truly excited to be a part of this capital raise designed to scale up CubCrafters’ future success.”

About Cubcrafters
Founded in 1980 by Jim Richmond, CubCrafters’ roots are in the 80+ year history of classic grassroots aviation, but the company’s products and services are innovative and completely modern. CubCrafters designs and manufactures Experimental, LSA, and Part 23 Certified aircraft. The Carbon Cub family of aircraft redefined expectations for the backcountry flying experience with innovative design, modern materials, powerful engines, and breathtaking performance. The company’s flagship XCub aircraft is offered in both nosewheel and tailwheel configurations, and substantially expands the mission profile of sport utility aircraft with higher speed, longer range, and larger payload. The key to our success is our ability to create unique value in the experience of personal adventure aviation. CubCrafters has been a privately held company for the first 40 years of its existence, but is now planning to welcome new public investment. Source: ‚Cub Crafters Website‚.

Tunisian Air Force buys T-6C Texan II

Textron Aviation Defense announced the delivery of the first Beechcraft T-6C Texan II Integrated Training System to the Tunisian Air Force in support of operations at No. 13 Squadron at Sfax Air Base in Tunisia. The Foreign Military Sales (FMS) contract comprises eight T-6C Texan II advanced military training aircraft, in-country field service and logistics support representatives, program management support, interim contractor support for the first year, training for pilots and maintenance professionals, spare engines, spare parts and aircraft support equipment.

“Textron Aviation Defense is honoured the Tunisian Air Force has chosen the world’s best and most affordable military trainer — the legendry Beechcraft T-6C Texan II — as its next primary trainer,” said Fouad Kasri, Director of Sales & Strategy for Africa and the Middle East, Textron Aviation Defense. “Tunisia is the thirteenth nation to acquire the T-6 and has now taken delivery of the 1,001st T-6 manufactured by our team in Wichita. We are delighted to welcome yet another North African and Mediterranean allied nation to the distinguished group of global air forces who rely on the next-generation T-6 Integrated Training System to achieve their pilot training objectives.” Textron Aviation Defense collaborated with the U.S. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC) and the U.S. Air Force Security Assistance Training Squadron (AFSAT) to support the Tunisian Air Force’s modernization and growth program. 

“Becoming a regional leader in military flight training excellence is one of the milestones to achieving our counter-terrorism and border security mission requirements,” said General Mohamed Hajjem, the Tunisian Air Force Chief of Staff. “We are grateful to Textron Aviation Defense, AFLCMC and AFSAT for supporting our acquisition of the Beechcraft T-6C Texan II, as well as our efforts to achieve territorial sovereignty and regional stability. This acquisition paves the way for additional bilateral engagements and strengthens our relationship with the United States.” Textron Aviation Defense expects to deliver the second Tunisian Air Force T-6C in late 2022. The remaining six aircraft are slated for delivery in 2023. Training of the initial cadre of pilots began Oct. 31 at Textron Aviation Defense facilities in Wichita, Kansas. Source: ‚Textron-/Beechcraft website‚.

FAA approves unleaded fuel for piston fleet

The FAA signed on September 1 supplemental type certificates that allow General Aviation Modifications Inc.’s 100-octane unleaded fuel (G100UL) to be used in every general aviation spark-ignition engine and every airframe powered by those engines. The move was hailed by the industry as a major step in the transition to an unleaded GA future. The FAA’s approval of the use of G100UL fuel in all piston aircraft satisfies a longstanding goal of finding a solution that can be used for the entire GA piston fleet.

“I’m proud of GAMI, the industry team, and the FAA for persevering over the long term and getting a fuel that the FAA has recognized as a viable alternative to low lead,” AOPA President Mark Baker said. “It’s vital that we find solutions to what has been plaguing general aviation since the seventies. It’s certainly the biggest issue I have dealt with in my time at AOPA. This is a big deal,” Baker added, “but there is a lot of work yet to be done.”

In 2021 the FAA approved STCs for GAMI covering a smaller number of Cessna 172 engines and airframes, and then expanded the approved model lists (AML) to include essentially all lower-compression engine and airframe combinations. Though that was seen as an encouraging step forward in the yearslong path to supply unleaded aviation fuel to the piston aircraft fleet, the STCs did not include aircraft needing the higher-octane fuel that accounts for 60 to 70 per cent of avgas consumption. This latest announcement by the FAA addresses the needs of those higher-compression engines.

GAMI cofounder George Braly said, “This is a big day for the industry. It means that for a lot of our general aviation communities, and especially for a high fraction on the West Coast, relief is on the way. And it means that our industry will be able to go into the future and prosper, and provide the essential infrastructure for this country for everything from Angel Flights to critical training of our future airline pilots.” Braly thanked AOPA and the GA community for their support through this long process. “Without it we couldn’t have gotten this done,” he said. Braly has said that Ann Arbor, Michigan-based fuel supplier Avfuel is standing by to manage the logistics and distribution of G100UL, and said he is open to partnerships. “Our arrangement is that any qualified refiner or blender of existing aviation fuels will be eligible to produce and sell it subject to the quality assurance requirements that the FAA has approved,” he said.

When will G100UL reach airports and aircraft tanks?
The timing for when G100UL will reach airports is still uncertain. “It’s going to take a while to manage the infrastructure” including manufacturing and distribution, Braly said. The supply chain “is still a very wounded infrastructure and that’s not going to make the process any easier, but we have a handle on how to do this, and with the support of the major players I think we can do that. It’s going to be limited, to begin with, but it can be ramped up rapidly,” he said. Baker said it’s important to get any fuels approved for use in the California market as soon as practical, in light of the fact that some municipalities have prematurely banned the sale of leaded avgas and threatened a safe and smart transition to unleaded fuel. “It is a politically charged issue there, and this will help keep our airports open with fuel that works with all aircraft.” AOPA will also purchase a number of unleaded fuels to use in its fleet of piston aircraft used for GA travel and flight training, showing members it has full confidence in FAA approval pathways and processes.

What will G100UL cost?
While the cost of the fuel has not been determined, Braly said the small-batch production process that will initially earmark the arrival of G100UL at airports means that the fuel will cost slightly more than leaded avgas. “Small volume batches cost money,” he said. “Until we can get [production] revved up that we’re making millions of gallons at a time, there will be an incremental [additional] cost,” he said. “It’s not going to be unreasonable,” he said. “Pilots in America will not be paying what they’re paying for avgas in Europe today.” And while they may pay a little more at the pump, owners can expect to see engines that operate more efficiently. “I think the days of cleaning spark plugs every 50 hours are going to be behind us for good,” Braly said.

Swift Fuels Inc., an Indiana-based company, has received FAA approval for its 94-octane unleaded fuel and has expanded its distribution, particularly to the West Coast. Swift Fuels’ 94-octane fuel meets some, but not all, of the demand of aircraft with low-compression engines. The company is developing a 100R unleaded fuel with more than 10 per cent renewable content. In addition, two fuel candidates are currently in the Piston Aviation Fuels Initiative testing process. AOPA continues to encourage all fuel manufacturers to follow through with their own formulations, Baker said. “We’d like to see several fuels available that all work together and blend together. Competition is always a good thing for the markets.” Source: ‚AOPA‚.

New Air Sports Live Tracking App

Two Norwegian air sports pilots have filled a gap in the market by developing an app which helps new pilots to create and practice their own Air Navigation Race (ANR) routes whilst also helping to bring their sport to a wider audience by helping events organisers and offering live streaming to broadcasters.

The new app, called Air Sports Live Tracking, is a user-friendly system which is designed to help less experienced pilots to create their own detailed navigation routes on their smartphones at a very minimal cost. They can also see others’ flights in different locations around the world, as well as follow live competitions and results. The app was also developed to be media-friendly and can link with media production to show live streaming of pilots’ races and thus promote competitive air sports. It can be used in conjunction with Flight Contest, making it easy for organisers and providing an exciting overview for audiences watching from around the world.

It all started with a simple idea
The two developers, who presented their system at the General Aviation Commission Plenary last year, explained that they wanted to create a cheap tracking application that would help them, as pilots, to develop their skills. Financial Consultant Espen Grønstad first dreamed up the project around four years ago, with the simple aim of showing live planes on a map on his smartphone. Joining forces with fellow pilot, Frank Olaf Sem-Jacobsen, maritime surveillance professional with experience in satellites, gave the project wings. The original idea expanded as the pair identified needs and found solutions. The beta 1.0 version was up and running after nine months‘ intense work in the pair’s spare time and with the generous support of app developer CreoIT.com. The app is now helping beginners to practice and improve as well as being used in competition for more advanced pilots when preparing for races in a new location.

Helping new pilots access the sport
The app, which is downloadable from app stores, brings together features onto a smartphone that would normally be used on several different devices, which can expensive. Using Google Earth maps, pilots can design their own ANR or precision flying routes, adding obstacles and gate timings to help them beat their own times and also compare themselves to others using these routes. The drag-and-drop functionality makes it very simple to use, and therefore attractive to those who are less experienced in navigation. Pilots can use a real-life map, decide their speed and provisional route and add minute marks and turning points, whether participating in a corridor race, position race, or rally. This means they can arrive at the airfield well prepared and will have less need to rely on others for planning. Another useful feature is that start times are adaptive, ie. commencing at ‘time zero’ meaning that the times for each gate will automatically update once the pilot has started the route.

Helping event organisers
Although the system was designed to comply with FAI rules for the tasks, one obvious challenge for the team was that for larger competitions, smartphones are not permitted during the actual flights. This could easily be overcome by providing pilots with a basic smartphone containing only this app because no further hardware is required. The slight delay from using mobile phone technology is minimal but can be overcome by opting for an artificial delay for races. The app can integrate with the widely-used ‘Flight Contest’ as an add-on, which helps organisers with registration and pilots to manage their crew. Events can also be organised on a small/local scale quite easily, with no logger or extra software required. Organisers can create a competition on the website, with the track, gates, prohibited areas, penalty areas and information boxes. The system generates a flight order automatically, including maps and images. The pilot simply needs to download the app, print the flight order, and take off.

Media-friendly live stream
On this shared platform, users can also view live scoring and follow the other pilots, something that has been used with success by the NRK, the Norwegian National Television Company, who used pilots’ live-stream video feed in the 2020 Norwegian Championship in Precision Flying, hosted by the Norwegian Air Sports Federation (NLF) to transmit live pilot tracking to viewers. This was the first time that the Norwegian television company had followed the full length of an air sports competition, and unsurprisingly, Grønstad and Sem-Jacobsen are excited about the possibility of bringing their beloved sport to a wider audience, commenting: “The sport has to develop to get new people involved.” Inspired by other televised sporting competitions such as skiing, they realise that TV has changed the sport, with media needs to change the way contests are run and shown to a live and television audience. With the app’s live stream, the timing gates can be shown with the results panel displaying whether the current pilot is ahead or behind the leader. This makes for a more exciting televised race which is great news for broadcasters. The ‘danger zones’ in a rally can also be viewed live, including the penalties.

Creative possibilities
Designed as a modular system, Air Sports Live Tracking can work alongside other systems allowing event organisers and broadcasters to be creative with the way the app is used. The app integrates with Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 which allows pilots to fly together ‘live’ from across the globe. Grønstad remarks that this is particularly useful in Norway during the winter when real flight conditions are limited! Another interesting concept could be virtual global competitions, either alongside live events or even as a stand-alone idea. Source: ‚FAI‚.

Partnership „Netjets + Lilium“

Found on the website of Netjets: At NetJets, we know that sustainability is not a trend for private aviation, but it’s future. In continued support of our sustainability goals, we are proud to announce our partnership with Lilium®, a Munich-based manufacturer of electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) jets. In this partnership, NetJets has the right to purchase up to 150 Lilium jets for use in our shared ownership program and will provide operations support for Lilium’s upcoming Florida hub. Like NetJets, FlightSafety International is a Berkshire Hathaway company and will also partner to provide Crew training products and services that will support Lilium operations.

A forward-thinking partnership
As the eVTOL market grows, regional air mobility and private aviation sustainability are growing in tandem—a true reflection of our industry’s future. NetJets retains an industry-leading position by recognizing and investing in companies such as Lilium, which know the future of air travel must be sustainable to become commonplace. That is why our partnership includes operations support for Lilium in Florida because decisions at NetJets—the owner and operator of the world’s largest, most diverse private fleet—have a ripple effect, and our adoption speaks volumes.

Zero-emission travel to nearby destinations
Fly to a nearby getaway, visit a relative a few cities over, or make the most of your next day trip. Travelling on a Lilium jet means considerably less carbon impact than taking a gas-fueled car to the same destination, thanks to 100% electric power. And with eVTOL technology, helipad infrastructure becomes available, expanding access to departure and takeoff locations. Travel to your NetJets aircraft with ease, depart from and arrive in more convenient fixed-base operators (FBOs), and enjoy more time savings on short legs, all while reducing your environmental impact. Source: ‚Netjets‘.

‘Spirit of Innovation’ takes to the skies for the first time

We are pleased to announce the completion of the first flight of our all-electric ‘Spirit of Innovation’ aircraft. At 14:56 (BST) the plane took to the skies propelled by its powerful 400kW (500+hp) electric powertrain with the most power-dense battery pack ever assembled for an aircraft. This is another step towards the plane’s world-record attempt and another milestone on the aviation industry’s journey towards decarbonisation.

Warren East, CEO, Rolls-Royce, said: “The first flight of the ‘Spirit of Innovation’ is a great achievement for the ACCEL team and Rolls-Royce. We are focused on producing the technology breakthroughs society needs to decarbonise transport across air, land and sea, and capture the economic opportunity of the transition to net zero. This is not only about breaking a world record; the advanced battery and propulsion technology developed for this programme has exciting applications for the Urban Air Mobility market and can help make ‘jet zero’ a reality.”

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said: “The first flight of Rolls-Royce’s revolutionary Spirit of Innovation aircraft signals a huge step forward in the global transition to cleaner forms of flight. This achievement, and the records we hope will follow, shows the UK remains right at the forefront of aerospace innovation. “By backing projects like this one, the Government is helping to drive forward the boundary pushing technologies that will leverage investment and unlock the cleaner, greener aircraft required to end our contribution to climate change.”

The aircraft took off from the UK Ministry of Defence’s Boscombe Down site, which is managed by QinetiQ and flew for approximately 15 minutes. The site has a long heritage of experimental flights and the first flight marks the beginning of an intense flight-testing phase in which we will be collecting valuable performance data on the aircraft’s electrical power and propulsion system. The ACCEL programme, short for ‘Accelerating the Electrification of Flight’ includes key partners YASA, the electric motor and controller manufacturer, and aviation start-up Electroflight. The ACCEL team have continued to innovate while adhering to the UK Government’s social distancing and other health guidelines.

Half of the project’s funding is provided by the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI), in partnership with the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy and Innovate UK. In the run up to COP26, the ACCEL programme is further evidence of the UK’s position at the forefront of the zero-emission aircraft revolution.

“The first flight of the Spirit of Innovation demonstrates how innovative technology can provide solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges,” said Gary Elliott, CEO, Aerospace Technology Institute. “The ATI is funding projects like ACCEL to help UK develop new capabilities and secure a lead in the technologies that will decarbonise aviation. We congratulate everyone who has worked on the ACCEL project to make the first flight a reality and look forward to the world speed record attempt which will capture the imagination of the public in the year that the UK hosts COP26.”

Rolls-Royce is offering our customers a complete electric propulsion system for their platform, whether that is an electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) or commuter aircraft. We will be using the technology from the ACCEL project and applying it to products for these exciting new markets. The characteristics that ‘air-taxis’ require from batteries are very similar to what is being developed for the ‘Spirit of Innovation’ so that it can reach speeds of 300+ MPH (480+ KMH) – which we are targeting in our world record attempt. In addition, Rolls-Royce and airframer Tecnam are currently working with Widerøe, the largest regional airline in Scandinavia, to deliver an all-electric passenger aircraft for the commuter market, which is planned to be ready for revenue service in 2026.

In June, we announced our pathway to net zero carbon emissions – a year on from joining the UN Race to Zero campaign – and the ‘Spirit of Innovation’ is one way in which we are helping decarbonise the critical parts of the global economy in which we operate. We are committed to ensuring our new products will be compatible with net zero operation by 2030 and all our products will be compatible with net zero by 2050. Source: „Rolls Royce„.