Signature Flight Support (Booth 364) is again handling all helicopter traffic in and out of Gatwick Airport after the helicopter aiming point (HAP) re-opened earlier this month. The development means that business and commercial aviation operators will again be able to land at Gatwick without a formal runway landing slot (they will need only an HAP slot, so ATC has prior notification) and without having to taxi on the runway.
Pilots and controllers at San Francisco International Airport (SFO), Memphis International (MEM) and Houston Intercontinental (HOU) may soon take part in operational testing of a new reduced-separation standard between aircraft departing on parallel runways during crosswind conditions. For the wake turbulence mitigation for departures (WTMD) procedure one of the aircraft must weigh more than 300,000 pounds (categorized as “heavy”) and weather conditions must remain at least basic VFR with a 1,000-foot ceiling and three statute miles visibility.
Signature Flight Support has resumed handling of all helicopter traffic into London Gatwick Airport, coinciding with the reopening of the helicopter aiming point (HAP) on May 3. The opening of the HAP after a 12-year hiatus allows operators once again to land helicopters at Gatwick without having to taxi on the runway. The new HAP is located at the end of Taxiway Uniform on the airport’s west side. Slots are still required for landing, and the HAP is for daylight use only when visibility is better than 1,500 meters.
Local changes in magnetic variation demanded that Runway 9L/27R at Hollywood/Fort Lauderdale Airport (FLL) be renumbered 10L/28R. On May 3, the airport also began a number of other construction projects that will continue through September next year, including the permanent decommissioning of the airport’s crosswind Runway 13/31 as well as significant new taxiway construction in advance of the opening of a new Runway 10R/28L. For the next 17 months, FLL’s only operational runway will be 10L/28R.
An Aeromexico Boeing 767 bound for Mexico City was substantially damaged when it suffered a tailstrike during takeoff from Runway 36L at Spain’s Madrid Barajas Airport on April 16. An Air Europa A330 using the same runway for takeoff about 20 minutes after the Boeing experienced a nosewheel tire blowout after running over a piece of debris from the 767. Both aircraft circled for some time to dump fuel and then returned for uneventful landings at Madrid.
The runway edge lights on four of the seven active runways at Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) went dark on April 11 in the middle of an evening traffic rush. The runways affected were 22 Right, 32 Right and both 27 Left and Right, causing air traffic delays and flight cancellations. Some lights went out completely while others flickered for nearly an hour. A spokesman for the City of Chicago’s Department of Aviation said the cause of the outage is unknown.
The ForeFlight team has released a major update to the ForeFlight Mobile iPad app–Version 5–featuring a new hazard advisor with terrain and obstacle awareness, new runway advisor features such as a traffic pattern advisor, runway winds and automatic display of taxi diagrams. The terrain map and Hazard Advisor work only on newer iPads (iPad mini, 2 and later) and iPhones (4 and later).
All taxiways at Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) once identified by a “Z” prefix have been eliminated as the City of Chicago continues toward the May 2, 2013 renaming of Runway 10-28. That runway will become 10L-28R in advance of this fall’s opening of the new Runway 10C-28C. ORD taxiways will now be identified with double letters such as “DD” or “GG.”
If your engine or engines suddenly quit, could you glide safely to the end of a runway? If that does happen, an iPad/iPhone app called Xavion can help point the way to a safe landing in any weather.
Xavion is the latest product from X-Plane simulator developer Austin Meyer’s Laminar Research. The company tested Xavion extensively on X-Plane and used the simulations to hone the program’s algorithms. A side benefit is that you can run Xavion on X-Plane to practice before trying it in a real airplane.
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.