News

Kestrel Stalls In Wisconsin, Maine »

The state of Wisconsin plans to take legal action against Kestrel for the company’s failure “to show measurable progress toward obtaining financing” to repay a state loan that’s 11 months overdue, the Duluth News Tribune reported this week. Wisconsin gave the company, headed by Alan Klapmeier, $4 million in state loans and millions more in tax incentives in 2012. The money was meant to help build a plant in Superior, Wisconsin, to work on the single-engine turboprop and help create more than 600 jobs. More

Used Jet Sales Remain Strong »

With sales of new business aircraft relatively flat, the used market has been enjoying a burst of activity for almost two years and may improve further as the economy gains steam. “We’re seeing a lot of pent-up demand as a result of the slow growth of general aviation for the last seven to eight years,” says Matt Huff, VP of Ogara Jets, an Atlanta-based brokerage. Other brokers have said sales have yet to recover to pre-2008 levels and the outlook isn’t expect to change much until beyond 2020. More

NTSB Warns Pilots Of Helmet Cord Hazard »

The NTSB issued a Safety Alert on Wednesday aimed at pilots who wear helmets while flying that have a cord attached to the aircraft’s internal communication system. Those cords may not easily detach in the case of an emergency, the safety board has found. The board cited two accidents, both involving helicopters, when the pilot’s egress following an accident was impeded by the connecting cord. In one accident, the pilot survived, but in another crash, both the pilot and passenger died. More

Scaled Flies Single-Engine Jet »

Scaled Composites rolled out and flew its most recent project on Wednesday, the company has announced. The company built two identical single-engine jets to demonstrate for an unnamed customer Scaled’s “advanced, low-cost manufacturing techniques” for the production of research aircraft for industry and government. The Model 401 experimental aircraft are each equipped with a single Pratt & Whitney JTD-15D-5D engine, with 3,045 pounds of thrust, the company said, and they are capable of flying Mach 0.6 with a service ceiling of 30,000 feet. More

Drones Heading For The NAS »

The remotely piloted Ikhana drone could be flying unescorted in the National Airspace System as early as fall 2018, NASA said last week. Testing in the NAS is planned to take place from NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in California. During the test, Ikhana would fly alone in the NAS for the first time, without a manned aircraft nearby. Meanwhile, a panel of industry and law enforcement officials have failed to reach agreement on how drones should be tracked and managed by federal authorities. More

ATC Proposal Dominates NBAA »

Aviation leaders presented a united front Tuesday in their resolve to kill a bill that would turn air traffic control services over to a nonprofit corporation. More

Huerta Urges 'Meaningful Discussion' On ATC »

The outgoing administrator of the FAA had some gentle advice for NBAA delegates and the aviation leaders at the annual convention in Las Vegas Tuesday on the hot topic at play. Michael Huerta urged an overflow crowd at Tuesday’s general session not to be close-minded about changing the way air traffic control is funded and run and said there should be “meaningful discussion” about the issue. More

Airbus Says VTOL Project On Track »

Airbus will be ready to fly its full-scale electric VTOL technology demonstrator by the end of next year, the company said last week. The project, which is being built by the company’s helicopter division, is designed to carry up to four passengers from crowded city centers to nearby destinations such as airports or train stations. The team recently completed testing of the propulsion system, including the ducted propellers, electric 100-kilowatt Siemens motors and all electrical systems. More

GE Reports Rapid Progress On ATP »

Just two years ago, GE's Business and General Aviation unit announced a new, clean-sheet turboprop and the company said at NBAA-BACE Monday that it will soon run a conforming prototype. The engine is called the ATP for advanced turboprop and although it's not based on the H-series engines GE bought from the Czech Republic-based Walter Engines in 2008, the engine is being developed and manufactured in the company's Prague facility. More

FlightAware A Global Force »

In 2005, a group of flying buddies in Houston created a website that used data from FAA flight plans to allow real-time tracking of aircraft in flight. Twelve years later, FlightAware is the busiest aviation website and will soon have much better flight tracking capabilities than the air traffic control system. More