CESSNA CARAVAN 208B, ROCKFORD, ILL., DEC. 17, 2002–Caravan N277PM crashed on a night ILS approach to Runway 7 at the Greater Rockford Airport (RFD) following a loss of control. The pilot was killed and the airplane was destroyed. The NTSB determined that the probable cause of the accident was the pilot’s failure to maintain control of the airplane during the approach.
Excel-Jet of Monument, Colo., is suing the FAA over the June 2006 crash of its proof-of-concept Sport-Jet, which was destroyed on takeoff from Colorado Springs Airport. According to witnesses, the single-engine composite jet rolled to the left, hit the runway and cartwheeled down the runway just after takeoff. The test pilot and flight-test engineer sustained minor injuries.
Excel-Jet of Monument, Colo., is suing the FAA over the June 2006 crash of its proof-of-concept Sport-Jet, which was destroyed on takeoff from Colorado Springs Airport. According to witnesses, the single-engine composite jet rolled to the left, hit the runway and cartwheeled down the runway just after takeoff.
Researchers at Raytheon Co. have proposed a novel technique to increase future runway capacity–in some cases potentially doubling an airport’s throughput–while at the same time avoiding wake turbulence.
Twelve people, including company president Bob Bornhofen, continue to work on the Sport-Jet single-engine jet program based in Colorado Springs, Colo. The first Sport-Jet prototype logged nearly 25 hours before crashing on takeoff on June 22 last year.
Luckily for my passengers, aircraft and me, the only times I’ve experienced a runway excursion have been during training. On each occasion, the results were predictable, even in the most sophisticated aircraft simulator. A loss of directional control sends the aircraft sliding across shamrock-green video scenery and careening harmlessly through runway lights and signs, trees and anything else in the way.
While the NTSB determined that “unnecessary and too aggressive” rudder inputs by the first officer broke the vertical stabilizer off American Airlines Flight 587, there was plenty of blame to spread among the airline, U.S. and French aviation regulators and Airbus Industrie, builder of the A300-605R that crashed into the community of Belle Harbor, N.Y., on Nov. 12, 2001.
The horizontal wake-turbulence avoidance distance currently required when a lighter aircraft is behind a heavier aircraft might have to be doubled when flying behind the new Airbus A380, according to preliminary recommendations by the International Civil Aviation Organization.
Bombardier Canadair CL-600 Challenger, Aspen, Colo., Feb. 9, 2006–The NTSB said the cause of the accident was the Challenger’s encounter with wake turbulence.
The Airbus A380 Wake Vortex Steering Group recently issued new recommendations for A380 wake turbulence spacing. The group includes representatives from the FAA, JAA, Eurocontrol and Airbus. For a heavy aircraft following an A380 on approach and landing, add two nautical miles to the existing standard, for a total of six. Medium aircraft, add three, for a total of eight. And light aircraft, add four, for 10 total.