AVweb flash

Ag And Helicopter Pilots Decry Drone Rule Change »

A recent federal court decision that the FAA has no authority to require drone users to register is not sitting well with many aviators. Helicopter Association International issued a statement this week saying it “strongly disagrees” with the ruling, adding that helicopter pilots “are deeply concerned about our ability to fly safely in airspace where pilots could encounter any unmanned aircraft, be it commercial or otherwise.” The National Agricultural Aviation Association also issued a statement. More

EBACE: Cirrus, Piper Models Now EASA-Certified »

Several U.S. manufacturers announced models that now are certified for sales in Europe this week at the European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition, being held in Geneva. Piper said it has been awarded approval for its top-of-the-line single-engine turboprop, the M600, which was FAA-certified in June last year. The six-seat aircraft sells for about $3 million. Cirrus said it has received EASA certification for its $2 million Vision jet and has made its first delivery in Europe. More

EBACE: GE Joins Aerion SST Effort »

GE Aviation says it will work with Aerion Corp. to look at what would be needed to develop an engine for a supersonic jet. “We have thoroughly evaluated over two dozen civil and military engines from all leading engine producers over the past two years,” said Aerion CEO Doug Nichols. That research, he said, led him to conclude that “working with GE Aviation will help us meet the challenging specifications needed to meet our performance objectives.” More

Short Final »

Heard recently one morning on JFK tower frequency … JetBlue: Tower, is our speed compatible with the aircraft ahead of us? … Tower:  As long as you don't go to warp factor 6, you should be fine ... Marty Twersky More

Nextant Announces Challenger Upgrade »

The European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition (EBACE) opens May 22 in Geneva and as usual, companies are making announcements in advance of the formal opening. Nextant has announced that it’s dipping a toe in the large cabin market with an avionics upgrade for Challenger 604 bizjets. More

Aviation Expo Canceled »

The Flying Aviation Expo scheduled for October in Palm Springs has been canceled but organizers are holding out hope it may be back in the future. Jeff and Vivienne Herold, who own Scheyden Eyewear, took over the show in its third year in 2016 and moved it from the Palm Springs Convention Center to the airport. Although the show got good reviews for organization and content, it was sparsely attended. More

Bahamas Allows BasicMed »

The Bahamas is the first neighboring country to the U.S. to accept BasicMed as a medical qualification for U.S. pilots flying in its airspace. BasicMed went into effect on May 1 and allows pilots to fly up to five passengers on day or night VFR or IFR pleasure flights (not for compensation or hire) in aircraft weighing up to 6,000 pounds without a Third Class medical. More

Court Quashes Drone Registration »

A Washington court has quashed the FAA’s drone registration program. The court ruled Friday that the registration rule violates the FAA Modernization and Reform Act, passed by Congress in 2012, that specifically bars the FAA from creating “any rule or regulation regarding a model aircraft.” More

Leesburg To Test Remote Tower »

A temporary mobile air traffic control tower will be operating this summer at Leesburg Executive Airport, in Virginia, requiring special procedures from pilots. Pilots flying both VFR and IFR will need to contact the tower, NBAA said this week. The tests, which are part of the airport’s Remote Control Tower experiment, will run June 5 through Aug. 12, from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day, and then from 4 p.m. to midnight, Aug. 13 through Sept. 8. More

Robot Copilot Lands 737 »

Aurora Flight Sciences has successfully tested a robotic copilot in a Boeing 737 simulator, demonstrating that it can safely land the airplane on its own, the company said this week. The system is designed to function as a second pilot in a two-crew aircraft, enabling reduced crew operations while ensuring that aircraft performance and mission success are maintained or improved. Aurora is working with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to develop the technology. More