General Aviation

News and issues concerning general aviation, specifically airplanes and helicopters powered by piston and alternative engines (i.e., non-turbine powered aircraft). Subjects include aircraft, engines, personnel, acquisitions, accidents, safety, security and training.

December 13, 2006 - 11:33am

Here at the Paris air show on the static display, visitors can see a rebuilt Dassault Flamant (Flamingo) MD-312 light military transport. Its recent history is that of enthusiasts investing time and money. But the near future is even more exciting, as the Flamant is to fly across the Atlantic to the Air Venture show in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, next month. Tail number F-AZVG is exhibited next to the Embraer 195.

December 13, 2006 - 11:22am

To prioritize and promote unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in the United Kingdom, the Society of British Aerospace Companies (SBAC) and the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Systems Association (UAVS) have signed a memorandum of understanding that will see resources focused on accelerating the implementation of UAV systems and making UK industry globally competitive.

December 13, 2006 - 9:57am

Vulcanair’s display of its P68C Jet could confuse visitors until they realize that the installation of 227-hp SMA diesel engines enables the popular twin to use jet fuel. Shortages of avgas are directly affecting demand for aircraft fitted with standard piston engines. Indeed in the Middle East, where avgas is not refined, availability is so limited that sales of the standard P68 in the region are unknown.

December 13, 2006 - 7:51am

Fighting fires from the air used to be an ad hoc business, as unpredictable as the odds of getting a return on your equipment investment. Even during a hot summer, aircraft operators in southern Europe might have their Bambi buckets gathering dust in the corner of a hangar on the off-chance a camping stove should topple over somewhere.

December 12, 2006 - 12:05pm

For several years large dark clouds have swept across the skies of light aviation in France. Last year less than 30 small piston airplanes were delivered here, compared with annual rates of 400 to 500 at the start of the 1970s.

Membership in the French Aeronautical Association (FFA), which includes 540 flying clubs across the country, has also declined, dropping by more than 3 percent over the last five years.

December 11, 2006 - 10:23am

For many, the story of Iraq since the fall of Saddam Hussein is not a happy one. So it is perhaps surprising that there is a daily operation on the ground and in the air which sees life in the strife-torn country in a very different light.

December 11, 2006 - 6:11am

Responding to the fast-growing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) market and exhibiting at Dubai for the first time, Canada’s MicroPilot has developed what it claims to be the world’s smallest fully functional autopilot. Weighing just one ounce, the MP2028g has capabilities that include airspeed hold, altitude hold, turn coordination, GPS navigation, as well as autonomous operation from launch to recovery.

December 7, 2006 - 10:56am

According to the UAV community, unmanned aerial vehicles face a busy future with all sorts of possible new civil and paramilitary applications, including security surveillance over urban areas, search-and-rescue missions, as well as environmental and infrastructure monitoring.

December 6, 2006 - 12:13pm

Several Iranian manufacturers have joined a pursuit of a growing local market for affordable light airplanes for initial training and leisure flying. A proliferation of flight schools that cater to an expanding base of rich and middle-class Iranians has driven the recent surge in demand. The export market presents another opportunity, and a few Iranian-built aircraft have reportedly gone to customers in Australia.

December 4, 2006 - 2:21pm

EADS Socata has delivered a new TBM 700C2 to Donald “Zanda” McDonald, director of Australian beef producer MDH Holdings. McDonald, a pilot rated both on planes and helicopters, flew the aircraft himself from Socata’s facility in Tarbes, France, to Mount Isa, Australia–an 8,800-nm trip.

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