At a White House press conference this morning, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood laid out the likely consequences of possible automatic federal budget cuts, also called sequestration, scheduled to start on March 1, to his department and the U.S. FAA.
Israel’s Xsight has developed its new FODetect system to help airport managers keep runways clear during rainstorms or even in the middle of the night. Using a small swiveling radar transmitter and sensor unit installed near the runway’s edge, the FODetect beams sweeps the runway as often as every 30 seconds and, like traditional radar, highlights–both visually and aurally–objects as tiny as a rivet that may have fallen unnoticed from vehicles. The operator watching the FODetect screen will also see a high-resolution image of the object that caused the alarm.
Jet Aviation Dubai has opened an FBO at Dubai World Central’s Al Maktoum International Airport. The company was granted permission to operate an FBO at the field permanently following its appointment as the dedicated ground handling service provider for MEBA 2012 in December, which was held for the first time at Al Maktoum Airport.
While millions watched the Baltimore Ravens defeat the San Francisco 49ers in the NFL Super Bowl in New Orleans on Sunday evening, the local FBOs at the Big Easy’s airports were gearing up for their own second half as many of the more than 800 private aircraft that flocked there would seek to depart soon after the game ended.
Cleveland Regional Jetport held its grand opening on January 25 in Cleveland, Tenn. Intended to replace nearby Hardwick Field, the $42 million project was completed in two years. According to Mark Fidler, the new airport’s director of operations and marketing, Hardwick required replacement because it was cost prohibitive for the city to acquire surrounding residential properties needed to expand the runway beyond its 3,300 feet.
When its new FBO facility opens in early April, the Henriksen Jet Center at Houston Executive Airport will feature the world’s largest aircraft arrivals canopy. The 32,800-sq-ft structure is large enough to provide shelter for a pair of Boeing Business Jets parked side-by-side. The FBO has operated from temporary trailers since its inception in 2006. The new 22,500-sq-ft terminal at the privately owned business aviation airport will offer 24-hour aircraft fueling, ground handling operations, rental and crew cars, crew lounge, catering services and complimentary wireless Internet access.
The FAA’s Great Lakes region published a winter operations bulletin last week as a review of important winter airport operations. This stated that issuing a Notam to close a runway when snowplowing operations begin is an important priority.
“The government treats business aviation like a rich man’s toy,” said an Indian business jet operator speaking to AIN on condition of anonymity. The comment neatly summarizes the context for the continuing obstacles to business aviation growth in a country where largely positive economic conditions should be driving a major uptick in expansion of the industry.
Prompted by a scathing audit report by the Transportation Department inspector general about the ineffective implementation of its wildlife hazard plans, the FAA is analyzing comments it received on three draft advisory circulars. One of the ACs is new, but the other two are revisions of existing ACs.
While many European airports saw traffic decline last year, Lyon Bron airport bucked the trend, experiencing 7.7-percent growth (to 5,818 aircraft movements) in business aviation traffic over the first 11 months of 2012, according to local statistics. Numbers at the Europe-wide level indicate a 4.69-percent drop in business aviation traffic over the same period.