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FAA officials told leaders of the light sport aircraft (LSA) industry at Oshkosh last week that an assessment of several LSA manufacturers will begin in September to determine the overall health of the industry. Read More >>
Continental Motors has delivered the 100th FADEC engine and, at the same time, has passed 13,000 flight hours on Continental engines with FADEC in the nation’s general aviation fleet. FADEC stands for full authority digital engine control, a system allowing for a single lever, electronic engine control for piston-powered aircraft. The 100th engine went to Liberty Aerospace to power an XL2 two-place aircraft. In other announcements, Continental President Rhett Ross said the PowerLink FADEC development and manufacturing facility will be relocated to the Continental Motors campus in Mobile, Ala.
After the FAA approved the sport pilot and light sport aircraft (LSA) rules, the industry braced for a European invasion. Aircraft that already met the specifications had been flying overseas for years. Now one company is throwing things in reverse. Read More >>
King Schools will make its pilot exam courses available online. Read More >>
The big thing about the first public flyby of the Cirrus Vision was the noise; there wasn’t any. “The V-tail deflects the noise upward,” said Kent Vandergrift, the Cirrus pilot who flew the jet to its world debut. Read More >>
EADS Socata on July 28 announced that new Garmin G1000-equipped TBM 850s would be available with synthetic vision. Garmin’s Synthetic Vision Technology (SVT) will be an option that recreates the terrain around the airplane in a 3-D view, using topographic databases. Even if the airplane were enveloped in clouds, pilots with the SVT option would see a synthetic recreation of the geography along the flight path. As for the G1000s in new TBM 850s, Socata will offer a five-year warranty, which Garmin calls FlightLevel. The G1000’s standard warranty is two years.
Lycoming is entering the light sport aircraft (LSA) arena. At Oshkosh the company unveiled a new fuel-injected engine, a derivative of a model well known to general aviation. Read More >>
Powerplant Developments, located in England but managed by former Superior Air Parts chief Tim Archer, will deliver a pre-certification 100-hp diesel engine to Tecnam, the Italian builder of light sport aircraft. Read More >>
Lycoming aircraft engines are going electronic. Lycoming Engines announced the launch of its fully electronic iE2 engine series, with an advanced electronic engine control system designed to optimize safety, simplicity, and economy. Read More >>
There will be a demonstration rocket race at the National Championship Air Races in Reno this year, to be followed next year by competitive rocket races. Read More >>
Diamond Aircraft is proposing to build the first new pressurized piston single in decades. The company said this week that it will offer two versions of the DA50, the SuperStar and the Magnum. Read More >>
What might bring top-level executives at Cessna, Cirrus, Piper, Mooney, and other airframe manufacturers to the same tent on a sunny, sticky day at Oshkosh? Apparently, the promise of a new light turboprop engine. Read More >>
As part of a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) initiative to get children more interested in math, science, and technology, Build A Plane, Cessna, and Parametric Technology Corporation will be supplying computer-aided design software to schools for kids to design new aircraft. Read More >>
If you are already aware of Found Aircraft Canada, then you are either an outbacker or are very knowledgeable about bush planes. Found wants to change that with its new Expedition line of aircraft for the general public. Found now offers the Expedition 350 tricycle-gear model and the 350 XC tailwheel model. Both aircraft sell for $485,000. The 315-hp Lycoming IO 580 engine powers both aircraft. The company claims a cruise speed in excess of 150 KTAS for the aircraft.
Remos Aircraft now has a new light sport aircraft model called the Remos GX with a carbon fiber wing. Previous models have had fabric wings. Changes made over the predecessor G3 model include the new wing, changes to the fuselage, an expanded cargo area, a ground adjustable Sensenich propeller, and night-VFR certification. The aircraft ranges in price from $120,500 to $135,500, and numerous options are available. Options include a $6,800 TruTrak Flight Systems DigiFlight II autopilot and a $5,900 Magnum ballistic safety parachute system.
For 27 years Glenn Martin, 48, of Christchurch, New Zealand, has dreamed of lifting into the air on ducted fans of his own design. With the help of his family, the Martin Jetpack flew publicly at Oshkosh on July 29. Read More >>
Aspen Avionics received supplemental type certificate (STC) approval of its EFD1000 Pilot and Pro primary flight display in an additional 239 aircraft models, the company announced July 29. Read More >>
Oshkosh visitors are breezing right by sleek Citations and rugged Stationairs at the Cessna booth, beating feet to get a look at the first production SkyCatcher light sport airplane. Read More >>
Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer continues to make serious inroads into the traditionally North-American-based business jet manufacturing industry. The company’s Phenom 100 very light jet recently surpassed 1,000 test flight hours after making its first flight a year ago July 26. Read More >>
As pilots of technologically advanced aircraft are discovering, managing all of the navigation databases in a modern cockpit can be a challenge. Garmin International this week announced at least a partial solution through flyGarmin, a Web site designed to help pilots manage Garmin database information and simplify the process of updating and purchasing databases. Read More >>
Owners of Garmin G1000-equipped Mooneys will soon be able to upgrade their cockpits to include synthetic vision technology and to take advantage of WAAS and SafeTaxi features. Read More >>
In an age when everyone seems to think “electronic” when it comes to aviation charts, Jeppesen is looking to reinvent paper sectionals. Read More >>
A brainy bunch of MIT grads have developed the Terrafugia Transition flying car and plan both road and flight-tests this year. They have been met with warm encouragement from the FAA and puzzlement from federal highway authorities. Read More >>
The Red Tail Project is well along with its restoration of a North American P-51C Mustang after it crashed four years ago, killing a key supporter of the project to honor Tuskegee Airmen. Artist Sam Lyons had created a painting of the aircraft now under restoration and will donate sales profits to support the completion of the restoration. The fuselage is completed while the wing has been in process for two to three months. The aircraft, to be called Tuskegee Airmen, will fly next spring. It will be painted in colors that represent a cross-section of markings used by all Tuskegee Airmen aircraft.
Roel Pieper, the new acting CEO at Eclipse Aviation, said that soothing vendor relations and assuring customers who canceled Eclipse 500 orders get their refunds are among his first duties. Read More >>
Jon Sharp will attempt Wednesday and Friday to gun his Nemesis NXT to 334 mph above the flight line at AirVenture. If he does, he will have a new world record for his class of aircraft. The old record is 331 mph, and he must beat that by 1 percent to lay claim to the record. This fall you’ll be able to fly Nemesis yourself on Microsoft Flight Simulator. But watch out, it has a 300-degree-per-second roll rate. “You’ll have the most fun if you fly it just above the ground, rolling and banking,” Sharp said.
Liberty Aerospace continues work on its model with higher gross weight and toe brakes called the Vanguard. Read More >>
The British company Cobham, owner of both S-Tec in Mineral Wells, Texas, and Chelton Flight Systems in Boise, Idaho, has completed the relocation of Chelton to Mineral Wells. All manufacturing, product, and customer support will be handled out of Mineral Wells. The Chelton office closed in Boise on July 31. The individual product names will continue. Chelton brings expertise in helicopter autopilots and electronic flight instrument systems to the S-Tec team.
Garmin certifies G600 glass-panel system
Garmin has received FAA certification of its long-awaited glass-panel retrofit for the general aviation fleet. The G600 can now be installed in 785 kinds of aircraft—pistons and turboprops, singles and twins—under 12,500 pounds. Read More >>
XM Satellite Radio now offers Aviator Pro, an upgraded package of in-cockpit weather data from XM WX Satellite Weather. The $100 per month service is received over an XM WX receiver, antenna, and screen display. The enhanced package includes turbulence between 21,000 and 45,000 feet, a one-day convective outlook, textual storm prediction from the Storm Prediction Center, icing from 1,000 to 30,000 feet, presence of supercooled water droplets from 1,000 to 30,000 feet, areas of low visibility, and hurricane tracks.
Icon A5 introduced with bright lights, glitter
Slick videos and Hollywood lighting introduced the Icon A5 light sport aircraft to the Oshkosh crowd on the eve of the opening of this year’s EAA AirVenture. Read More >>
Flight Design tries something metal
Flight Design, the German company that has led quarterly sales since the light sport aircraft movement started, has introduced a nearly all-metal model of its popular CT. Read More >>
New Bendix/King display systems due out soon
Continuing its plan to leverage the storied Bendix/King brand, Honeywell this week announced further details of its new primary flight display and multifunction display meant for aftermarket installation in lighter GA airplanes. The Bendix/King KFD 840 PFD includes an integrated air data and heading reference system. Read More >>
Avidyne unveils smaller retrofit glass
PS Engineering introduced the PMA8000B-MP3, its newest audio panel, featuring a 1 gigabyte built-in MP3 player. Files are transferred via a USB drive, after which no wires are required. Buttons on the face of the audio panel control all functions, including skip forward and back, volume, pause, and random play. The PMA8000B-MP3 is a direct replacement for the PMA8000, PMA8000B, and Garmin GMA340 audio panels. PS Engineering’s new PMA8000B-MP3 is available for $1,849, $150 more than the PMA8000B.
Bendix/King unveils GA handheld
Looking for a handheld GPS navigator that you can use in the cockpit—and in a car at your destination? Honeywell’s Bendix/King launched its AV8OR series of portable avionics for GA pilots at Oshkosh. Read More >>
L-3 Avionics Systems announced that it will add GPS-based synthetic vision to its SmartDeck Integrated Flight Controls and Display System. The company is seeking FAA certification and plans to offer synthetic vision as an add-on for existing systems and built into new ones. Synthetic vision, a technology first offered by Chelton and Garmin, shows a realistic, pictorial, GPS-derived view of the world including terrain, traffic, and obstacles. “Even with zero visibility, the pilot has sharp graphics of the display,” said Adrienne Stevens, L-3 president. “It makes the cockpit even safer and more manageable, and it looks fantastic.”
Updated Thursday, August 7, 2008