Lufthansa Technik introduced two new products for private jet cabins at ABACE 2014: an aircraft steam generator system and an onboard therapeutic oxygen generation system. The 40-pound steam generator, which does not need to be connected to the aircraft’s existing water system, facilitates installation of steam showers in VIP aircraft. The oxygen generation system, which weighs 66 pounds, provides oxygen continuously via a mask for up to two connections. Either system can be installed in a midsize or larger business jet during cabin outfitting or as a retrofit.
In February 2011 the FAA issued an Airworthiness Directive calling for removal of chemical oxygen generators from airplane lavatories, or emptying the generator and restowing the masks. (By the way, no one told the passengers that there was no longer any supplemental oxygen supply in the bathrooms.) While security wasn’t mentioned in the AD, apparently there was a safety problem. Or as the FAA so confoundingly put it in the new final rule, which rescinds the 2011 AD, “This AD was prompted by reports that the current design of the oxygen generators presents a hazard that could jeopardize flight safety. We are issuing this AD to eliminate a hazard that could jeopardize flight safety and to ensure that all lavatories have a supplemental oxygen supply.”
The FAA has proposed levying a $1 million fine against American Eagle for failing to comply with the company’s oil-consumption monitoring program. The offenses involved nine Saab 340Bs, whose oil levels the airline failed to properly check daily between May 1 and Aug. 24, 1998. During that period, Eagle pilots aborted 11 takeoffs due to low engine oil pressure.