A recent FAA flight check discovered a previously unknown obstruction beneath the Runway 4 ILS glideslope at New York La Guardia Airport (KLGA), ruling out a full ILS approach to that runway. Aircraft landing on Runway 4 can now use only the localizer approach, which carries minimums nearly 300 feet higher. In poor weather, the only practical option for the area is to operate both LGA and John F. Kennedy (KJFK) airports on a southeast runway configuration, which, in turn, creates significant arrival delays at nearby Teterboro Airport (KTEB).
The captain of an Embraer ERJ-145 has highlighted what he says was a “serious threat to flight safety” caused by the actions of air traffic controllers during an approach to Charlotte Douglas International Airport (KCLT) last January.
According to testimony recently given through NASA’s confidential aviation safety reporting system (ASRS), the flight in low-visibility conditions (reported as one quarter mile) encountered radar altimeter problems that eventually caused the crew to miss their first Category II ILS approach at CLT and head to an alternate.
An AINSafety story published last year demonstrated that a relatively straightforward GPS approach can be fraught with danger even when pilots precisely follow the instrument approach plate. Our editors began thinking about what readers might regard as their most challenging instrument approaches.
There is a new way to learn how to fly with a head-up display (HUD) without booking time in an expensive simulator or trying to learn in the airplane. FlyRealHUDs.com has developed an inexpensive HUD simulator plug-in that runs on the X-Plane personal-computer flight simulator program. The FlyRealHUDs (FRH) plug-in replicates the symbology and flight dynamics of real HUDs and comes in two configurations, for business jets and airliners. (Full disclosure: I was a beta tester of the FRH HUD before its release in late October.)
Esterline CMC Electronics has been selected to equip four Australian airExpress Boeing 737s with CMA-5024 IntegriFlight GPS landing system sensors. Qantas’s engineering department is performing the installation for the cargo airline.
Among avionics manufacturers, there are two philosophies at work, the so-called “head-up, head-down” debate. This has devolved into cockpits equipped with head-up displays (HUD) and those with traditional head-down displays (flat-panel LCD pilot flight and multifunction displays) and no HUD. Head-up means the pilot can continue looking out the windshield while viewing flight guidance information on the HUD, through touchdown. Head-down means viewing information on the instrument panel, then looking through the windshield during touchdown.
Nextant Aerospace has been awarded several new supplemental type certificates for the 400XT, including STCs for the Rockwell Collins Venue in-flight entertainment system and the Aircell Axxess cabin communication system featuring high-speed wireless Internet connectivity and dual-channel satellite phone service. Nextant also received STCs for additional avionics options, many of which help to pave the way for final certification by the EASA.
The FAA issued an Information for Operators (InFO) bulletin to remind aircraft operators of the potential for erroneous glideslope and/or localizer indications caused by interference from aircraft or equipment moving through ILS critical areas.
The pilot’s decision to attempt a go-around late in the landing roll with insufficient runway remaining caused the fatal crash of a Hawker 800A in July 2008 at Owatonna (Minn.) Degner Regional Airport, according to an NTSB final report issued last week. The two crewmembers and six passengers aboard perished in the accident, and the aircraft (N818MV) was destroyed.
Bell Helicopter announced last month that its new 429 light twin has been approved for precise wide area augmentation system (Waas) glidepath operations. The capability will allow the 429 to be flown to point-in-space approaches when the cloud ceiling is as low as 250 feet agl and to conduct steep (9 degrees) localizer precision with vertical guidance (LPV) approaches at a minimum velocity for instrument approaches (Vmini) of 45 knots.
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