The FAA in late July issued an emergency order of revocation to LAB Flying Service of Juneau, Alaska, effectively shutting down the 52-year-old carrier, which served Alaskans with a fleet of Piper singles and twins, a Britten-Norman Islander and Helio Courier. The revocation order cited a number of discrepancies with LAB’s maintenance
Avionics and ATC
New developments and products in avionics, specifically about aircraft electronics in the cockpit; and news, issues, personnel, equipment and developments about air traffic management.
Beginning this October, new-build Boeing 737 jetliners will use GE Aviation Systems flight-management system (FMS) update 10.8 software. The change provides increased navigation database capacity (with room for growth) and accommodates different performance of 737s fitted with winglets. FMSs allow operators to meet required navigation performance standards for separation from the ground or other aircraft.
With the proliferation of UAVs greatly increasing the number of “eyes in the sky,” the flow of video imagery streaming into intelligence centers is turning into a torrent. To help analysts provide timely intelligence, California-based 2d3 Inc. has developed a software suite known as TacitView that turns motion imagery into a more useful product.
Litening III targeting pods supplied by Ultra Electronics to the RAF have successfully completed their first year of service in Iraq. Mounted on Tornado GR4 combat aircraft, the pods are fitted with a ROVER III-compatible video datalink supplied by Ultra, which also manufactured Litening III under license from Rafael.
Eurocontrol has introduced a new screen-to-screen datalink between pilots and air traffic controllers at its Maastricht upper-area control (UAC) center in the Netherlands. The controller-pilot datalink communication (CPDLC) system supplements existing voice contact by allowing text messages between screens in the cockpit and on the ground to reduce workload at both ends.
The FAA flipped the switch on its wide-area augmentation system (WAAS) at 12:01 a.m. on July 10, potentially opening up thousands of runways at 5,400 public-use airports for near-precision approaches in both lateral and vertical guidance modes.
The FAA plans to start introducing instrument approaches using its Wide Area Augmentation System on July 10, bringing much higher levels of accuracy, signal availability and approach performance to GPS-based satnav. WAAS avionics now entering the market herald the end of today’s “dive and drive” nonprecision approaches, replacing them with two new procedures.
Private Nigerian operator Arik Air confirmed here it is a previously unidentified customer for seven Boeing 737-800s that will bring its fleet to 17 aircraft, of which three will be longer -900 variants. Arik Air also has on order five Boeing 777-300ERs and seven 787-9s (for which deliveries are being renegotiated to a
later date than the previously agreed 2013).
Airlines from fast-growing new markets in the Middle East and Russia once again boosted dwindling aircraft sales yesterday here. Airbus cashed in to the tune of up to $4.5 billion with four contracts calling for up to 56 new jets.
Gulf carrier Qatar Airways kicked off the near frenzy of transactions with a memorandum of understanding covering the purchase of four A321s, plus options on a further two.
Following a somewhat protracted rollout, the availability of end-user airborne broadband services now appears ready to meet the burgeoning demand from business aircraft operators and their passengers. And much of this technology is being demonstrated here at EBACE this week.