New This Week

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AVweb’s weekly review of what’s happening in aviation turned up news of a new, “sensor-capable” special mission Cirrus SR22, the report of the first flight of a solar-electric airplane, a new stick-shaker stall warning for E-AB aircraft, and an invitation to watch the Space Shuttle Independence placed atop its 747 transport. Cirrus Aircraft has introduced a "sensor-capable" special mission aircraft based on its Generation 5 SR22/SR22T aircraft. Cirrus' special mission platform Cirrus Perception(TM) will be available in mid-2015. With Cirrus Perception, Cirrus will create a unique new class of prospective owners and operators for SR22/SR22T aircraft. Cirrus Perception also introduces a new style of reconfigurable special mission aircraft, easily and quickly converting from standard aircraft to an advanced observation platform. Aerial sensor and observation systems are quickly becoming more advanced, and also lighter, more compact and affordable. Special mission operators no longer need a large turbine aircraft or rotorcraft carrying heavy, antiquated technology. The single-seat technology demonstrator for the "Sun Flyer" solar-electric airplane completed first flight tests and will make its public debut at EAA AirVenture. Sun Flyer is being developed by Aero Electric Aircraft Corp. (AEAC) in conjunction with its development partners, Bye Aerospace and PC-Aero, who are planning to offer the first U.S.-sponsored, practical, all-electric airplane serving the training, recreational and general aviation markets. AEAC is also collaborating with Redbird Flight Simulations to offer a comprehensive pilot training system.

MakerPlane and its development partner, Vx Aviation, announced a low-cost, easy-to install haptic (touch technology) stick shaker for Experimental-Amateur Built Aircraft. The SWZL-1A is an aircraft "stick shaker" controller system that provides a haptic pre-stall warning based on a stall vane switch or the Angle of Attack (AoA) information received from an electronic flight information system (EFIS) serial data stream. The SWZL-1A controller directly drives a small vibration motor that is clamped to the control stick or control yoke of the aircraft. The device is compatible with EFIS devices from Dynon, Garmin and Grand Rapids Technology (GRT). Finally, the public is invited to see a giant crane lift the space shuttle replica Independence to its permanent home atop Space Center Houston's historic shuttle carrier aircraft on Thursday, Aug. 14. The free event Rise of Independence will mark another chapter in the ongoing story of Space Center Houston's future world-class exhibit. At 8 a.m., a team of skilled engineers and planners in partnership with the center will lift the massive shuttle by crane (weather permitting). The ceremony preceding the lift begins at 7:15 a.m. There is limited viewing available on a first-come, first-served basis.