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Apple GPS Accessory Glitch Fix Coming »

The next Apple mobile operating system update is expected to fix a glitch that prevents iPads from communicating with some GPS accessories used for aviation apps. As we reported in April, the last update, iOS 8.3 stopped early model GPS devices from supplying position information to aviation apps like Foreflight. More

NASA Tests Anti-Bug Aircraft Coating »

Aircraft of the future could be more fuel-efficient, says NASA, thanks to new non-stick coatings they recently tested that shed insect residue. By staying cleaner and bug-free, the coated wings are more aerodynamic. NASA tested five coatings recently during a two-week project in Shreveport, Louisiana, flying the Boeing 757 ecoDemonstrator. "One of the five coating/surface combinations showed especially promising results," said Fay Collier, project manager for the environmentally responsible aviation project. More

ALPA Lobbies For FAA Stability »

Nearly 200 members of the Air Line Pilots Association are volunteering in Washington, D.C., this week, to help lobby Congress to pass a new FAA funding bill that prioritizes safety. The ALPA campaign, called "This is Your Captain Speaking," features print and digital ads, radio spots, videos and a social-media effort. The campaign will target Capitol Hill for the next two months. This week, pilots are meeting with members of Congress and their staff. More

Diamond Moves Ahead With Hybrid Drive »

Diamond Aircraft’s Austria headquarters is well along with a third-generation hybrid-drive electric aircraft design that it hopes will serve as a certification template for future electric aircraft. The new airplane is based on a DA40 composite airframe, but rather than a geared conventional prop driven by a diesel engine, the aircraft will have a single Austro AE300 diesel driving a generator to power a pair of small, high-output electric motors mounted on a canard. Diamond CEO Christian Dries told AVweb that the company is partnering for a third time with Siemens AG, the large German electrical conglomerate, to produce a workable hybrid drive. More

SAAB To Test Remote Control Towers »

Two of Ireland's busiest airports, Cork and Shannon, will soon get remote control towers operated from a third airport in Dublin in what appears to be the first operational full-scale test of remote tower technology. The Swedish aerospace and industrial conglomerate Saab is providing the equipment and overseeing the test program. According to Saab, the remote sensor suites at Cork and Shannon will be operated from a central location at Dublin, first in parallel with manned towers and later as stand-alone remote operations, at least during some times of the day. The three airports, although small by international standards, account for more than 20 million passenger emplanements a year. More

Airbus Says Software Caused A400M Crash »

The loss of an Airbus A400M and four crew on a test flight on May 9 was caused by incorrectly installed software, an Airbus official told a German newspaper last week. "The black boxes attest … that there are no structural defects, but we have a serious quality problem in the final assembly," Marwan Lahoud, Airbus' chief strategy officer, told Handelsblatt. No problems were found with the software itself, which controls the airplane's four turboprop engines. More

Solar Impulse Pacific Flight Cut Short »

The Solar Impulse crew has cut short their attempt to fly from China to Hawaii on solar power, with a safe landing in Nagoya, Japan, at about midnight local time. Options for navigating a weather front along the route deteriorated, and the crew decided to land and wait for another opportunity. Despite the delay, the crew was encouraged by the airplane's performance during the 40-hour flight, its longest yet. More

Short Final »

Piper Cub 12345: "Bozeman tower, Cub 12345 is with you 10 miles to the west. I would like to transit through your airspace to the west." ... Bozeman Tower: "Cub 345, squawk 0123." ... Piper Cub 12345: "Bozeman Tower, Cub 345 is unable to comply as this is a non-electrical Cub. Those transponders were not invented in 1945." ... Bozeman Tower: "Cub 345, those transponders are all the rage nowadays! Transition approved." -- Bob Sneberger More

Congressmen Want Controller Cheating Charges Investigated »

A bipartisan group of U.S. representatives is asking FAA Administrator Michael Huerta for full disclosure relating to the alleged cheating by some candidates for air traffic controller positions. As AVweb reported last week, Fox Business News says it's in possession of a voicemail from a senior FAA official offering select controller candidates the answers to a "biographical questionnaire" (BQ) that now forms the initial screening test for new controllers. More

Does The FBI Have A Fleet Of Surveillance Cessnas? »

Evidence suggests the FBI operates a sizeable fleet of single-engine Cessnas that it doesn't want the rest of us to know about and it's not talking about the purpose of the aircraft. In an investigative report in the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune, the paper was able to identify a Cessna 182T that spent hours circling several prominent locations in the city at night thanks to an observant tipster with a live flight tracker app on his phone. More