tirsdag 31. desember 2013

Leger uten grenser

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Flysikkerhet IV

An ORNGE chopper is stuck on the ground after its rotor blades struck trees during a landing to pick up a patient at a remote site just west of Thunder Bay

An ORNGE Sikorsky S-76 helicopter has been stranded at a remote site just west of Thunder Bay since Dec. 22 after it clipped some trees during landing. None of the four crew on board were injured.

OTTAWA-An ORNGE helicopter is stuck on the ground after its rotor blades struck trees during a landing to pick up a patient at a remote site in Northern Ontario.

None of the four crew on board were injured in the incident just over a week ago but the Sikorsky S-76 helicopter has been stranded at the scene ever since.

According to a preliminary report obtained by the Star, the helicopter had been dispatched to a private residence just west of Thunder Bay on Dec. 22.

"The helicopter entered a high hover to blow away snow accumulation at the scene. During the manoeuvre a white-out condition was created. The main rotor contacted trees," reads the report.

Defying gravity with a human-powered helicopterVideo: Defying gravity with a human-powered helicopter
Ornge crash victim's grandfather: He wasn't meant to be thereVideo: Ornge crash victim's grandfather: He wasn't meant to be there

While such accidents can be catastrophic, the two pilots were able to maintain control of the helicopter and landed immediately.

"The helicopter blades hit some trees and there was damage to the blades but no injuries," ORNGE spokesperson Steve Robinson said.

"That aircraft actually landed safely at the scene without incident beyond clipping those trees," he said.
The patient was transported to hospital by ground, accompanied by two ORNGE paramedics.
While all four rotor blades were damaged as they struck the trees, it's not known whether other engine components, such as the gearbox, were also damaged in the incident.

ORNGE officials have made arrangements to have the helicopter moved by truck back to their facilities in Thunder Bay this week where they can better assess what repairs are needed, Robinson said.

ORNGE's helicopter operations have been in the spotlight after a fatal crash earlier in the year. In that May 31 incident, a Sikorsky S-76 helicopter crashed minutes after a midnight takeoff from Moosonee airport. That accident remains under investigation by the Transportation Safety Board of Canada.

Though ORNGE has two Pilatus aircraft based in Thunder Bay, this latest accident has left the northern Ontario city without an air ambulance helicopter. However, Robinson said, helicopters could be dispatched from other bases if the need arises.
"Rotor service is available if necessary from our Kenora or Sudbury bases," he said.

Flysikkerhet III

Airplane hits vehicle at Calgary airport

An Air Canada airplane hit a vehicle at the Calgary International Airport on December 30, 2013 - tipping it over.

CALGARY - EMS rushed to the Calgary International Airport on Monday after an airplane hit a catering truck, tipping it over.

It happened near the new terminal under construction at the south side of the airport.

Officials say the Air Canada Jazz plane was pushing off from a gate when it bumped into the cube van around 9 a.m., flipping it over. There were no passengers on board at the time.

EMS assessed the driver, but he was uninjured and didn't require medical treatment.

Spokesperson Jody Moseley says the incident has had very little to no impact on their operations.

The National Transportation Safety Board says it will be investigating.


Back to Top
Airport worker killed by service truck on Logan tarmac

A 59-year-old man working on the tarmac near the north cargo area of
Logan International Airport was killed last night in a collision involving
an airfield services truck, authorities said.

The man was suffered a fatal head injury in the vicinity of a plane that
was stationary at the time. Suffolk District Attorney Daniel Conley's
office said it appears the plane was not involved in the fatal collision.

"The preliminary information is that an employee on the tarmac
suffered fatal injuries after being hit by a truck as it was traveling
in reverse in the area of a plane, and it does not suggest that he
was struck by a plane," Conley's office said in a statement.

State police said the victim was guiding a lavatory waste truck to an
aircraft when the truck hit him under the plane. The crash happened
 about 7:19 p.m.

The 47-year-old driver of the vehicle that struck the man was
hospitalized at Massachusetts General Hospital for stress. He will also
be tested for drugs and alcohol, though authorities said there were no
obvious signs of impairment. The victim's name was not immediately released.

Prosecutors: Woman brought loaded gun into Midway Airport

Josephine M. Coleman, 35, of Country Club Hills

A south suburban woman faces felony charges after she tried to bring a loaded gun onto an airplane Saturday at Midway Airport.

Josephine M. Coleman, 35, of Country Club Hills, was ordered held in lieu of $25,000 bail Sunday in Cook County Bond Court.

Coleman was arrested Saturday after authorities found a handgun with seven live rounds in her carry-on bag.

Coleman, a military veteran who her attorney said is currently pursuing a master's degree, was booked on a flight to San Antonio, Tex., according to court records.

She told authorities she had a Firearm Owner Identification card for the gun.

"I didn't know the gun was in there," she told officials, according to records.

Flysikkerhet II - Nok en visuell innflyging med et "tilbud"?

Aircraft landing 'near-miss' over Runcorn Bridge

FlyBe aircraft

A plane carrying 61 passengers and four crew was involved in a near-miss with Runcorn Bridge

A Flybe plane carrying 61 passengers had a near-miss with Runcorn Bridge as it came to land at Liverpool John Lennon Airport, a report says.

The plane, from the Isle of Man, was coming into land at 09:07 BST on 1 June, according to the Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) report.

The co-pilot disengaged the autopilot and turned the aircraft, tracking the bridge while descending, it said.

A cockpit alert sounded and the flight path was adjusted.

The flight crew confirmed it was safe to continue the approach and the plane landed safely.

The aircraft had been descending at a rate of about 2,000ft per minute and the "Caution Obstacle" alert was generated at a radio height of 894ft (272.4m) as it approached runway 27, the report said.

Safety 'a priority'
The Runcorn Bridge is 285ft (87m) over the riverbed and crosses the River Mersey.

The AAIB said the Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System (EGPWS) was a terrain awareness and alerting system that uses internal terrain, obstacle and airport databases to predict a potential conflict between a flight path and terrain or obstacle.

"The obstacle concerned in this case was not positively identified, but was possibly the Runcorn Bridge," the report said. It was published last month.

A spokeswoman for Flybe said: "Flybe confirms that safety of its passengers and crew is its number one priority."

The event highlighted in the AAIB report was "thoroughly investigated by our own investigators and with correspondence with the AAIB", she added.

Flybe has taken "a number of actions" to further improve safety, said the spokeswoman.


N670H was the first aircraft in the world to be certified with TCAS. 

Recently I spent a day with Honeywell Aerospace and it had clearly worked its way into my brain at a deeper-than-expected level.

Before I found the opportunity to go over my notes and write a follow-up article about my time with the Honeywell Crash Test Dummies up at Paine Field, I found myself on board an American Airlines Boeing 737. My first thought, after it was clear that tower had given us a "taxi into position and hold" command for Runway 34R at SEA was, "I sure hope this aircraft has RAAS."

Runway Awareness and Advisory System is a Honeywell Aerospace product that allows pilots to enhance their situational awareness by providing audible and visual cues about the aircraft's location relative to its destined runway. Once the aircraft arrives on the runway, it is capable of reminding flight crew that they are still on the runway after one minute and thirty seconds. This time was decided on by Honeywell's research team. After ninety seconds on the runway, research shows that the safe course of action is to make a radio call to the tower reminding them of your position and intent. That technology alone saves lives and prevents damage, but if you think Honeywell stopped there, you would be wrong.

2012, and hopefully 2013 have been the safest years for air travel in history. Graph by Honeywell Aerospace

After checking in at Honeywell Aerospace's Redmond, WA laboratory I was ushered into a conference room to meet with Honeywell's Senior Chief Engineer, Ratan Khatwa. Khatwa has a PhD in Human Factors engineering, and has worked with the Dutch FAA-equivalent on take-off performance monitoring. He is a man that not only eats, sleeps, and breathes flight safety - he instills that culture in all of Honeywell Aerospace's employees.

He started the conversation by presenting an interesting point; the accident rate for all commercial transport (so all jets and turbines over 17 seats, including cargo) is 1:2,500,000 flights - the safest air travel has ever been. True, this is based on 2012 data, but with the growth in air travel in 2013, the fact the year is almost over, and relatively few accidents, there is no reason to expect a significant change in the overall accident rate.

A graph of the occurrences of recent aircraft accidents. Source Boeing, graph by Honeywell Aerospace.

The data points to the changing causes of accidents. Loss of control-based accidents are decreasing, but "Controlled Flight Into Terrain" (or CFIT) is making a resurgence. The other big causes are, of course, runway-related (both takeoff and landing).

Why CFIT is making a disturbing comeback is a matter of some debate - it may very well be a change in training procedures that has shifted mindshare away. It may also be, as some believe, that safety issues are somewhat cyclical. That actual discussion is well above my pay grade, even though I studied a vast quantity of aviation safety areas in college!

Honeywell already has a practical, certified, and well-understood product to aid in the prevention of CFIT- it is called Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System (EGPWS). Our discussion soon moved to the more intractable problems Honeywell is exploring in the world of aviation safety.

Runway Monitoring

A mock up of Honeywell's take off performance monitoring system - Image: Honeywell Aerospace

Boeing was actually experimenting with installing a take-off performance monitoring system on the 777 during the design phase. Their issue was that they could not manage both the computational complexity, nor the level of detail, to present to info the flight crew. Honeywell has worked to fix that and they are currently in the process of offering a "take-off monitoring system."

In less-complex terms, the goal of this system is to provide visual and auditory cues to the cockpit such that both members of the flight crew are more engaged in the takeoff process. In this case, there are two visuals being tested. Both will display the amount of runway remaining, as well as the predicted rotation point. What is more contentious is what the aural cue will be to warn pilots that they are not going to be able to reach a safe V1 speed in the remaining length of runway. What is agreed is that the speed at which any warning will be given is 80kts.

Honeywell's Redmond Flight Simulator

To get a better understanding of how this technology will work, we were taken across the complex to the flight simulator. This flight sim, as you can probably see, is not your ordinary 737. Indeed, it has parts from the 777, the 787, and most of it is actually "off the shelf" components produced for Microsoft Flight Simulator enthusiasts.

Indeed, the Honeywell 737 simulator is running that very program, which can confuse actual flight crews. When Honeywell needs to collect extremely precise instrumentation user data, they often borrow the simulators of airlines that they have close relationships with.

In the simulator, we were shown a demonstration of the take-off and landing performance monitoring system. It is one of the most interesting things I have ever seen. The system will inform the pilot of every possible permutation of the takeoff. It gets even better on landing.

A simulated unstable approach. Image from Honeywell Aerospace.

Even before the aircraft arrives on short-final, Honeywell's Landing Performance Monitoring System begins displaying information that would be relevant for flight safety. If the aircraft is not at the correct glideslope or proper attitude, it will warn the flight crew of an unstable approach.

The natural remedy to an unstable approach is a go around. In fact, the remedy to most landing problems is a go-around.

Honeywell's Landing Performance Monitoring System can also calculate touch down point. Image by Honeywell Aerospace.

Honeywell's new instrumentation will also be capable of calculating and displaying the exact point of touchdown. This will also display whether the aircraft will touch down within the first third of the runway. Some airlines have different landing standard operating procedures, so Honeywell will be working on this technology with partner airlines to prevent nuisance alerts. The long-landing warning exists to alert pilots that they have missed the point of a safe touchdown and should go-around, lest they overrun. There are also alerts for things like deploying the speedbrakes or thrust reversers. In my opinion, once this technology is commercialized it will save lives and millions of dollars.

If that wasn't awesome enough, Honeywell is developing a similar technology, but for taxi. Imagine, a virtual view of the aircraft as it taxis. Complete with a view of the taxiways, traffic, and circles to warn of points of potential runway incursion. Also imagine if that same system could automatically change display modes once the aircraft was on the runway - It's amazing, trust me!

Honeywell is also working on taking human-aircraft interaction to the next level. This, however, is so early in the research stage that I will only allude to the fact that it is a technology designed to reduce workload using brainwaves. They also have ways to use this technology to improve safety, or they will in a few years.

A hallway in Honeywell's Redmond testing laboratory. 

If that was not enough, we were also allowed to explore Honeywell's testing and development laboratory. Here they predominantly work on their flagship weather radar, the RDR-4000, which can cover three dimensions of travel, use multiple frequencies to avoid clutter and rainshadow, detect turbulence, and more or less do everything you'd ever want from a weather radar. This is the product that is tested aboard N580HW during the Floridian summer.

Honeywell's flagship weather radar, the RDR4000

The Honeywell Digital Flight Data Recorder and Digital Voice Data Recorder (the "black boxes" that aren't black)          
This space is also used by Honeywell to troubleshoot and assist with regulators on issues pertinent to their flight data and voice recorders ("black boxes"). They can also do the same for FOQA, but none were present that day.

UAV - Viktig fra USA

Det skal etableres spesielle områder knyttet til sivile institusjoner som skal kunne bidra til utvikling av see-and-avoid systemer, samt engasjere seg i forskning. I Norge har vi så vidt jeg vet kun ett område som er godkjent, nemlig Andøya Rocket Range. Hvordan situasjonen er for et tidligere annonsert område nær Røros vet jeg ikke, men jeg er interessert i oppdatering.

US announces six drone test sites

The US aviation regulator has announced the six states that will host sites for testing commercial use of drones.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) picked Alaska, Nevada, New York, North Dakota, Texas and Virginia.
The sites are part of a programme to develop safety and operational rules for drones by the end of 2015.
Hitherto mainly used by the military, the potential of drones is now being explored by everyone from real estate agents to farmers or delivery services.
The head of the FAA, Michael Huerta, said safety would be the priority as it considers approval for unleashing the unmanned aircraft into US skies.











Five surprising uses for drones

  1. Help reporters cover stories (the BBC is currently trying them out)
  2. Allow real-estate agents to sell luxury homes by showing off that stunning aerial view
  3. Deliver beer to music festival-goers
  4. Make movies (Part of The Smurfs 2 was filmed with a drone)
  5. Track the Sumatran orangutan and other endangered species

Pilots will be notified through routine announcements about where drones are being flown.
The FAA said in a statement that its decision followed a 10-month process involving proposals from 24 states.
The agency said it had considered geography, climate, location of ground infrastructure, research needs, airspace use, aviation experience and risk.
The sites chosen are:
  • A set of locations proposed by the University of Alaska in seven zones with varying climates, from Hawaii to Oregon
  • Griffiss International Airport in central New York state will test how to integrate drones into the congested north-east airspace
  • North Dakota Department of Commerce will test the human impact of drones and also how the aircraft cope in temperate climates
  • The state of Nevada will concentrate on standards for air traffic and drone operators
  • Texas A&M University plans to develop safety requirements for drones and testing for airworthiness
  • Virginia Tech university will research operational and technical areas of risk for drones
The biggest chunk of the growth in the commercial drone industry is currently expected to be for agriculture and law enforcement.


For years, people thought drones would never be allowed to fly in the US. Then Jeff Bezos got involved. The Amazon chief executive said his company would start using drones to deliver packages - and even cynics began to think something might happen.
Matt Scassero, a retired US Navy captain who has worked on efforts to expand the use of drones, said he thinks Amazon moved things along. "It adds a lot of interest," he said.
The FAA announcement are signs of progress for Scassero and other drone enthusiasts. It means officials are taking their requests seriously - and things are on track for the drones to fly.

Police and other emergency services could use them for crowd control, taking crime scene photos or for search and rescue missions.
It can cost a police department hundreds of dollars an hour to deploy a helicopter, while an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) can be sent into the skies for as little as $25.
Farmers, meanwhile, might find it easier to spray crops or survey livestock with the pilotless aircraft.
The FAA estimates as many as 7,500 aircraft could be in the air five years after widespread airspace access is made legal.
However, the commercial use of drones has drawn criticism from both conservatives and liberals.
In a report last December, the American Civil Liberties Union said that giving drones access to US skies would only ensure "our every move is monitored, tracked, recorded and scrutinised by the authorities".
But lawmakers from winning states were delighted with the selections.
"This is wonderful news for Nevada that creates a huge opportunity for our economy," said Senator Harry Reid, a Democrat from Nevada.
An industry-commissioned study predicted more than 70,000 jobs - including drone operators - would develop in the first three years after Congress loosens drone restrictions on US skies.

The same study, conducted by the Teal Group research firm, found that the worldwide commercial drone market could top $89bn in the next decade.

Norwegian - Inn i det nye året

Sertifiserende myndigheter i USA og Europa må gå inn i seg selv etter dette. Flyet kan ikke ha vært ferdig testet før det ble introdusert i markedet.

Norwegian-fly - Norwegian beklager situasjonen på det sterkeste. Passasjerne selv lurer på om de kommer seg hjem før nyttår. - Foto: Nilsson, Johan / NTB scanpix
Norwegian beklager situasjonen på det sterkeste. Passasjerne selv lurer på om de kommer seg hjem før nyttår.
Foto: Nilsson, Johan / NTB scanpix

276 Norwegian-passasjerer mer enn et døgn forsinket

De 276 passasjerene som skulle ha ankommet Oslo lufthavn mandag formiddag med Norwegians Dreamliner-flight DY7002, kan i verste fall risikere å komme seg hjem først neste år. Natt til tirsdag ble siste avgangstidspunkt estimert til klokken 15.30 norsk tid.
Siste estimerte avgangstidspunkt er klokken 9.30 tirsdag morgen lokal tid i New York, noe som tilsvarer klokken 15.30 tirsdag norsk tid. Med flytid på sju og en halv time betyr det at passasjerene lander på Gardermoen tidligst klokken 23 nyttårsaften, skriver VG.
– Jeg er ganske frustrert over situasjonen og har mine tvil om vi rekker hjem til nyttårsaften. Men jeg håper selvfølgelig at vi får reise snart, sier Eivind Engen, som er en av de 276 passasjerene, til avisen.

Svensker også forsinket

Han opplyser at han og flere andre passasjerer ble innlosjert på et hotell på flyplassen, men at mange har fått beskjed om at det ikke er ledige rom å oppdrive. Flere passasjerer er frustrerte over dårlig informasjon, legger han til.
Situasjonen ble ytterligere kaotisk da passasjerer som skulle ha reist fra New York til Stockholm, natt til tirsdag også ble sittende fast i New York.
Årsaken er at Dreamliner-flyet som skulle ha dratt fra New York til Oslo natt til mandag, er samme fly som skulle ha tatt med seg passasjerer fra New York til Stockholm mandag kveld. 


Ifølge Aftenposten skulle flyet med Oslo-passasjerene ha tatt av fra New York natt til mandag og landet på Gardermoen klokken 10.50 mandag formiddag. Ankomsttidspunktet ble deretter endret til klokken 14.55 mandag ettermiddag, og deretter utsatt på ubestemt tid.
Norwegians pressetalsmann Daniel Kirchhoff opplyste mandag kveld til NTB at håpet var at flyet kunne ta av fra New York klokken 3.30 natt til tirsdag norsk tid.
Med to ytterligere timers forsinkelse tyder det dermed på at de tekniske problemene med bremsesystemene ennå ikke er løst, ifølge VG.


Norwegian beklager situasjonen på det sterkeste, og beklager manglende oppdateringer på selskapets nettsted.
Dreamlineren som nå står i New York, er ifølge Aftenposten identisk med flyet som søndag fikk problemer med varme- og klimastyringen på vei fra Bangkok til Oslo.
Ifølge VG opplevde 270 passasjerer temperaturer på opptil 32 grader på flyturen til Gardermoen.

mandag 30. desember 2013

Kvikkas for de rike

First Private Supersonic Jet Promised in 2018 - For $80M


For billionaire executives, a 16-hour flight from Los Angeles to Tokyo is just too damn long to spend out of pocket. The Spike Aerospace S-512 promises to cut that time in half, and it won't cost more than a measly $80 million.

The Boston-based Spike crew is made up of former Airbus, Bombardier, and Gulfstream engineers, along with a handful of entrepreneurs and investors that have set out to create the world's first supersonic private jet.

Their goal is to create a new breed of business aircraft that can reach a cruising speed of Mach 1.6 (1,218 mph) and a top speed of Mach 1.8 (1,370 mph). At those speeds, the S-512 is theoretically capable of flying from New York to London in less than four hours, all while carrying up to 18 passengers in the opulence they're accustomed to.

It's no accident that Spike is quoting flight times over oceans and not the continental U.S. - the FAA prohibits supersonic flight over land, with few exceptions. But Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and even NASA have been working on ways to redesign supersonic aircraft to reduce the boom when breaking the speed of sound, but to no avail.

And Spike isn't the first to promise a supersonic jet. Aerion announced plans in 2009 to create its own 12-seat supersonic business jet (which, ironically, was pegged to cost $80 million). That jet was supposedly due in 2015 - and Spike's is promised to take off in December 2018.

Spike Aerospace S-512: Fly Faster. Do More.
Spike Aerospace S-512: Fly Faster. Do More.

Undervannsbåt i stealth klassen

Som gammel Orion driver er jeg interessert i det som er under overflaten også, ikke minst
nyvinninger av dette slaget.

The diesel-electric submarine Novorossiysk is the latest example of non-atomic technology

Sjekk video her: http://tinyurl.com/kcsx9fw

Russia launches 'stealth' submarine in St Petersburg

29 November 2013 Last updated at 15:36 GMT
Russia has launched a new submarine in St Petersburg - the first in a series of six to be delivered to the Russian Black Sea fleet over the next two years.
The diesel-electric submarine Novorossiysk is the latest example of non-atomic technology. It is well armed and hard to detect when submerged

lørdag 28. desember 2013

Krohn Air

Claus Krohn, eier og daglig leder av Krohn Air, her fotografert på Molde Lufthavn.
Claus Krohn, eier og daglig leder av Krohn Air, her fotografert på Molde Lufthavn. Foto: Wil Lee-Wright

- Er du milliardær og vil bli millionær, bør du starte flyselskap

Claus Krohn startet flyselskap i irritasjon over SAS. Og det har så langt kostet ham dyrt. Men nå lysner det, for Krohn Air og 80-åringen.
Stig Tore Laugen, Dagens Næringsliv
Publisert: 27.12.2013 - 21:52 Oppdatert: 28.12.2013 - 10:05

Da SAS i februar 2010 la ned ruten mellom Molde og Trondheim, ble den da 77 år gamle forretningsmannen og flyentusiasten så irritert at han stiftet Krohn Air. Siden oppstarten har selskapet fløyet mellom Molde og Trondheim fire ganger daglig, to avganger om morgenen, og to om ettermiddagen, i ukedagene.

SAR - Det tok tid før denne nådde Rotor & Wing

Det er imidlertid første gang jeg leser om radarutstyret.

Friday, December 27, 2013

AgustaWestland Inks Norwegian SAR Helicopter Deal

The Norwegian government has placed a $1.6-billion order for 16 AgustaWestland AW101s to meet its all weather search and rescue (SAR) service requirement. Under the contract, Norway has options to purchase six further aircraft. AgustaWestland will equip the fleet with an advanced SAR package, including a multi-panel surveillance radar system from Selex ES, two rescue hoists and a fully integrated avionics and mission system.
Deliveries are scheduled to begin in 2017. The helicopters will be operated by the Norwegian Air Force.

AW1109 NAWSARH flying. Photo courtesy of AgustaWestland

fredag 27. desember 2013

Helikoptertrafikken sterkt berørt til- og fra Sola

Kraftig vind fører til forsinkelser og kanseleringer i helikoptertrafikken.

Uværet stopper helikopterflyvninger

Flere flyvninger fra Sola til Nordsjøen er kansellert og innstilt på grunn av uværet.

- Været har stoppet oss en del i dag. Vi har hatt fire kanselleringer på turer til leterigger, forteller operasjonsleder Bjørn Andersen i Helikopterservice.
Han forteller at det er mye vind og høye bølger som er årsaken til kanselleringene.
Se kanselleringer og forsinkelser i helikoptertrafikken på www.heliport.no
- Det blåser opp mot 80 knop enkelte steder, og vi slipper ikke folk ut fra helikopteret og ut på helikopterdekket om det blåser over 60 knop, sier Andersen.
Han tror været blir litt bedre i ettermiddag, og at man kan fly som vanlig igjen.
- Og det vi ikke flyr i dag, det flyr vi i morgen, sier han.
Også i Bristow merker man været.
- Vi flyr nå, men det blåser veldig mye, sier operasjonsleder Ann Christin Dalen i Bristow.
Bristow har ikke hatt noen kanselleringer fra Sola til Nordsjøen i dag, men har hatt noen forsinkelser.
- Vi flyr frem til været stopper oss igjen, men det kan hende det blir noen forsinkelser utover kvelden. Akkurat nå er det helt på grensen til at det blåser så mye at vi ikke kan sette av folk på helikopterdekkene, forteller Dalen

UAV - Viktig fremdriftsplan lagt frem i USA

US Defense Department Releases New Unmanned Systems Integrated Roadmap


Strategy and budget realities are two aspects of the US Defense Department’s new Unmanned Systems Integrated Roadmap, released on Tuesday. The report to Congress is an attempt to chart how unmanned systems fit into the defence of the nation.

“The 2013 Unmanned Systems Integrated Roadmap articulates a vision and strategy for the continued development, production, test, training, operation and sustainment of unmanned systems technology across DOD,” said Dyke Weatherington, the Director of the Unmanned Warfare and Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Office at the Pentagon.
“This road map establishes a technological vision for the next 25 years and outlines the actions and technologies for DOD and industry to pursue to intelligently and affordably align with this vision,” he continued.
Unmanned aerial vehicles have received the most press, but unmanned underwater vehicles and ground vehicles are also providing warfighters with incredible capabilities.
Although unmanned vehicles have proved their worth in combat operations throughout the Middle East and Central Asia, current technologies must be expanded and integrated into the sinews of the defense establishment, the report says.
It also calls for unmanned systems to be programmes of record in order to achieve “the levels of effectiveness, efficiency, affordability, commonality, interoperability, integration and other key parameters needed to meet future operational requirements.”
Of course, all DOD programmes have to face the reality of the budget crunch. “Achieving affordable and cost-effective technical solutions is imperative in this fiscally constrained environment,” the report notes.
Strategy really drives the technology. Unmanned systems will be crucial as the U.S. military shifts its focus to the Asia-Pacific region and puts the air-sea doctrine into effect. In the future, unmanned vehicles will be required to operate in more complex environments involving difficult weather, terrain, distance and airspace. All this will require extensive coordination with allies and host nations, the report says.
“The road map describes the challenges of logistics and sustainment, training and international cooperation while providing insight on the strategic planning and policy, capability needs, technology development and operational environments relevant to the spectrum of unmanned systems,” Weatherington said.
To download the complete road map, click here.

UAV - En naturlig utvikling i bruken - Madrid

Madrid Tests UAS for City Surveillance


Madrid City Hall is testing a UAS with plans to watching the city from the air. The aim is for them to be used by the emergency services, and a municipal spokesperson has said they have tested them several times, including in September, during an event organised to celebrate if Madrid was chosen to hold the 2020 Olympic Games.
They explained that they wouldn’t purchase the UAS, because it is a constantly evolving technology, but would hire the service and if they are happy with it, make it available 24 hours from 2015.
Using the services from September to December this year has cost €6,000. For the next year, the contract has been signed with Imagenes Aereas for €18,000.
There are four UAS, two of which can carry up to five kilos and obtain real time images of the ground below during a flight of up to 20 minutes. It would be used partly to analyse gases, temperature and other variables, which are vital for decision taking in emergencies.

Norwegian møter motbør i USA

Norwegian-sjef Bjørn Kjos - Amerikanske flygiganter vil nekte Bjørn Kjos og Norwegian å fly i USA. - Foto: Roald, Berit / NTB scanpix
Amerikanske flygiganter vil nekte Bjørn Kjos og Norwegian å fly i USA.
Foto: Roald, Berit / NTB scanpix

Amerikanske flyselskaper vil hindre Norwegian i å få lisens

De amerikanske flyselskapene American Airlines,
Delta, United og US Airway støtter den amerikanske
pilotforeningen i kravet om å nekte Norwegian å fly i USA på EU-lisens.

Ifølge Dagens Næringsliv har de fire flyselskapene sendt et brev til det amerikanske transportdepartementet der de ber om at departementet avslår Norwegians søknad, akkurat slik pilotforeningen tidligere har gjort.
Årsaken skal være at selskapene mener at Norwegian forsøker å omgå nasjonale lover og regler for å sikre seg en urettmessig konkurransefordel.

Avviser anklagene

Flyselskapene mener at Norwegian bryter luftfartsavtalen mellom EU og USA med å bruke asiatisk personell på sine langdistanseflyginger. Dette avvises totalt av Norwegian.
–Vi omgår ingen regler, vi følger regelverket til punkt og prikke og det kommer vi fremdeles til å gjøre, sier kommunikasjonsdirektør Anne-Sissel Skånvik i Norwegian til avisen.

–Amerikanerne frykter konkurranse

De fire amerikanske flyselskapene har ifølge tall fra USAs transportdepartement 53,1 prosent av innenriksflygingene i USA.
–Disse flyselskapene har dominert luftrommet over Atlanteren, og holdt høye billettpriser. De ønsker selvsagt ikke konkurranse, mener hun.
Norwegian flyr i dag på EØS-lisens, noe som begrenser flyvningsmulighetene fra Europa, og har derfor søkt om å fly USA-rutene sine med irsk-registrerte fly på EU-lisens.

SAS og langdistanseflyene - Fra E24

<b>KAN FÅ SELSKAP AV ELDRE SØSKEN:</b> SAS har bestilt tilsammen 12 nye langdistansefly av typen Airbus A350 og denne A330-300. Selskapet vurderer imidlertid å beholde de gamle Airbus-maskinene etter at de har fått nye kabiner.
KAN FÅ SELSKAP AV ELDRE SØSKEN: SAS har bestilt tilsammen 12 nye langdistansefly av typen Airbus A350 og denne A330-300. Selskapet vurderer imidlertid å beholde de gamle Airbus-maskinene etter at de har fått nye kabiner.

SAS venter på kjempeordren: Vurderer å beholde de gamle flyene

OSLO LUFTHAVN (E24): Mens konkurrentene pøser på med nye fly har SAS is i magen. Selv med en milliardordre inne hos Airbus, vurderer flyselskapet å beholde de gamle langdistanseflyene i flåten.
Kampen om reiseglade nordmenn på langtur hardner til, og flyselskapene gjør nå det de kan for å friste med toppmodellene som Boeing og Airbus har å tilby.
Både Norwegian og Qatar har satt inn Boeings nye Dreamlinere, mens Thai Airways og Pakistan International har satt inn helt nye eller nesten nye Boeing 777-fly til Oslo og flyr heller eldre fly til andre byer i Europa.
Som om ikke det var nok, kunngjorde Norwegian i begynnelsen av desember at de også har bestilt en større variant av Dreamliner-flyet enn 787-8-varianten de så langt basert seg på.
Men samtidig som konkurrentenes utrulling skjer må SAS foreløpig vente ett år til før deres store langdistanseløft blir virkelighet for passasjerene.

- Megastolte
I tillegg til minst 12 nye fly skal SAS oppgradere kabinene i syv av deres eksisterende langdistansefly.
E24 har fått en sniktitt på de svært hemmelige tegningene som viser hvordan SAS sitt nye flyinteriør vil se ut.
- Vi er megastolte av det som skal komme, sier Eivind Roald, konserndirektør i SAS for markedsføring og salg.
E24 møtte konserndirektøren etter at selskapet presenterte sine årsresultater for regnskapsåret 2012/2013. SAS leverte et overskudd, slik som de hadde lovet.
Det er første gangen på seks år at selskapet har gått i pluss, og SAS-ledelsen mener de skal klare å levere et overskudd i inneværende år også.
- Blir dere litt sjalu når dere ser konkurrentenes inntog av nye fly?
- Jo, det kan man jo være, men man lære seg å leve med de lange leveringstidene i denne bransjen, sier Roald, som selv kom fra IT-bransjen der han peker på at tidshoristontene man måtte forholde seg til var helt annerledes.

- De river ut alt
I det store langdistanseløftet SAS presenterte før sommeren inngår både nye fly og en totalrenovering av syv eksisterende fly.
SAS har bestilt åtte av Airbus' splitter nye flaggskip A350 XWB, og har opsjon på ytterligere seks fly. Her starter leveransene først i 2018, men fra 2015 kommer de fire Airbus A330-300 i den nye versjonen som har ekstra stor rekkevidde
- Fordelen med 330 er at de har utvidet rekkevidde. Vi kan ta de helt til San Francisco og Tokyo, sier Eivind Roald.
I tillegg skal SAS oppgradere syv av sine A330- og A340-maskiner. Det første flyet tas ut neste desember, og oppussingen tar rundt 25 dager, ifølge SAS-direktøren.
- De river ut alt, og det er bare skallet som står igjen, sier Eivind Roald.

- Best i Europa
Med totalrenoveringen vil passasjerne få oppleve helt nye kabiner hvor setene i Business-klasse kan legges helt flatt ned.
Det visuelle designet i kabinen beskrives som svært moderne og fremtidsrettet, og dette vil alle passasjeren få oppleve.
- Business-klassen mener jeg kommer til å bli den beste i Europa, sier Roald.
Konserndirektøren for salg og markedsføring forteller at han selv har vært involvert i utformingen av de nye kabinene.
Selv bruker Roald uttrykket «griselekkert».
SAS-ledelsen har også vært med for å prøvesitte en hel rekke setetyper fra forskjellige leverandører.
Økonomi pluss-avdelingen skal også få flere seter enn før, og som tidligere sjef for IT-giganten HP i Norge har Eivind Roald bidratt til at underholdnings- og informasjonssystemene ombord i de nye flyene får et kraftig løft.
Uten at han vil røpe for mange detaljer gir han inntrykk av at underholdningsopplevelsen skal bli langt mer personlig og individuell enn det konkurrentene kan tilby i dag.
- På vårparten i 2015 er vi ferdig med oppgraderingen, og da vil våre fly fremstå som helt, helt nye fly, sier Eivind Roald.

Vurderer å beholde de gamle
Selv om SAS foreløpig har sagt at selskapet vil fase ut de gamle langdistanseflyene ettersom de nye Airbus-maskinene blir levert, vurderer de også å beholde dem siden disse flyene får splitter nye kabiner på linje med de nye flyene.
- Gjennom de neste årene skal en del av de gamle flyene fases ut, men vi trenger ikke å ta ut de flyene. Vi kan utvide levetiden deres med de nye kabinene, sier Roald.
Foreløpig har ikke SAS tatt en endelig beslutning om de skal utfase eller ikke.
- Å forlenge levetiden er en mulighet vi ser på hele tiden.
- Mange av de andre flyselskapene som har bestilt Airbus sitt nye A350 har bestilt den største A350-1000 varianten. Har dere vurdert å endre deres bestiling av A350-900 gitt trafikkveksten i Norge?
- Ikke når det gjelder størrelse. A350-ordren vi har vil ha plass til rundt 310 seter og det er en betydelig oppgradering fra dagens flåte, sier Roald, og legger til:
- Vi er komfortable med den ordren vi har inne hvor vi også har opsjoner på flere fly

Emirates bekrefter kjøp av 50 A380

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Emirates Completes $23 Billion A380 Purchase

Emirates has completed its $23 billion purchase for 50 Airbus A380s originally announced as an agreement at the Dubai Airshow in November, Airbus
said Monday Dec. 23. 
Tim Clark, president of Emirates, finalized the contract during a visit to Airbus headquarters in Toulouse, France. The Dubai-based carrier now has a total
of 140 orders in its backlog for Airbus A380s. 
Clark called the A380 the airline's "flagship aircraft."
"This order is a major vote of confidence in the A380. Since delivery of their first aircraft in July 2008, Emirates’ A380 fleet has grown to be the largest in the world with 44 A380s in operation," said John Leahy, chief operating officer of Airbus.
Emirates will use one of its newly acquired A380s to replace a Boeing 777-300ER on routes to London's Gatwick airport, adding a 36 percent increase in capacity on one of its three daily flights. That will also make Emirates the first airline to operate an A380 to Gatwick. 
“Our long term strategic partnership with London Gatwick enables us to bring our flagship A380 on a regularly scheduled basis and build on our robust presence at the airport," said Thierry Antinori, executive vice president of Emirates.

torsdag 26. desember 2013

Glasgow ulykken

EC135 Faces Fuel Sensor Fault
The Eurocopter EC135 light twin helicopter is facing more trouble after the EASA issued an emergency airworthiness directive on December 19 referring to a manufacturer alert service bulletin that requires a one-time check of fuel probes and, possibly, cleaning and replacement. The issue, discovered by Bond Air Services, appears to be that the probes are indicating a fuel level higher than actual. Investigations showed that the incorrect signals that the probes transmit to the indicator may also inhibit the amber “fuel caution” light. Tests confirmed the problem starts with water contamination. As of December 23, 264 sensors had been tested. Of those, 12 needed to be cleaned but were fully functional afterward, while two failed and needed to be replaced. Meanwhile, the “low fuel” warning system is independent and remains reliable, Eurocopter said. Pilots should thus strictly heed the red “low fuel” light, regardless of the fuel quantity indication. The company has also issued a safety information notice for EC145 operators, as the latter helicopter uses similar fuel sensors.

Eksperimentell tulleflyging?

Flykrasj i Irkutsk i Sibir - Flyet krasjet i et militært lager ved byen Irkutsk øst i Russland 2. juledag. - Foto: 38.mchs.gov.ru /
Flyet krasjet i et militært lager ved byen Irkutsk øst i Russland 2. juledag.
Foto: 38.mchs.gov.ru

Russisk transportfly krasjet under «eksperimentell flyvning»

Ni mennesker er omkommet etter at et russisk transportfly av typen An-12 krasjet under landing på en militær flyplass ved byen Irkutsk i Sibir i Russland torsdag.
Ingen av de ni i transportflyet overlevde krasjet, bekrefter en talsmann for Krisedepartementet overfor Russia Today.
Flyet var på vei fra en flyfabrikk i Novosibirsk til en annen fabrikk nær Irkutsk, ifølge nyhetsbyrået Itar-Tass.

Krasjet i militært lager

Ifølge nyhetsbyråets kilde var flyet ikke brukt til transport av folk eller varer, men drev med «eksperimentell flyvning».
Ifølge lokale medier krasjet flyet under innflyvning, og endte i en lagerbygning på den militære flyplassen ved Irkutsk. I sammenstøtet eksploderte flyet.

Utdatert flytype

Ingen personer ble skadet på bakken. Brannfolk har nå brannen under kontroll.
Flyet som krasjet hadde vært brukt til rutinemessig frakt av reservedeler.
I alt ble det produsert over 850 sivile og militære versjoner av denne flytypen. Flere hundre fly ble eksportert til utlandet. Produksjon ble stoppet i 1973.
Flytypen er nå regnet som utdatert og det russiske flyvåpenet leter etter en erstatning.
Flyulykke Irkutsk - Det brøt ut brann da flyet tok bakken, men ingen av dem som arbeidet på det militære lageret ble skadet. - Foto: 38.mchs.gov.ru /
Det brøt ut brann da flyet tok bakken, men ingen av dem som arbeidet på det militære lageret ble skadet.
Foto: 38.mchs.gov.ru

onsdag 25. desember 2013

Honda Jet - nærmer seg sertifisering

HondaJet on Final Path to Type Certification
Honda Aircraft announced that the FAA issued Type Inspection Authorization (TIA) for the HondaJet, a key milestone in the light jet’s certification program. Now that the jet’s GE Honda Aero HF120 engine is certified and the TIA issued, Honda Aircraft has finalized the certification timetable for the HondaJet. According to Honda Aircraft president and CEO Michimasa Fujino, “We can expect aircraft type certification in the first quarter of 2015 with deliveries following immediately after.” TIA is the final step before FAA pilots can fly the HondaJet as part of the certification process and indicates that the jet meets type design requirements. “We have successfully demonstrated, through ground and flight testing, that the HondaJet will meet certification requirements,” Fujino said. “We are now ready to begin the final stage of certification flight-testing with FAA pilot participation.” Honda Aircraft also announced that its customer service facility at Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro, N.C., received FAA Part 145 approval. “The HondaJet program’s momentum is quickly building as we continue to reach and achieve milestones in our dream to bring the world’s most advanced light jet to market,” he said.

EC225 - Noen er fortsatt skeptiske

All Operators Reinstate Eurocopter EC225
With Brazil-based BHS Helicopter, Omni and Aeróleo Taxi Aéro resuming Eurocopter EC225 Super Puma operations, all operators have reinstated the type, the helicopter manufacturer announced last week. The three Brazilian companies fly in support of Petrobras’s offshore oil-and-gas activities. The medium twin returned to service in July with Angola’s Sonair and gradually in other parts of the world, with 75 percent of the fleet back in operation as of December 20. Eurocopter identifies the other operators as CHC Helicopter, Bristow, Bond, Blueway DanCopter, Era and MHS Aviation Berhad. However, the Marignane, France-based airframer remains reluctant to detail the situation in the UK North Sea, where not all EC225s have been returned to service yet. CEO Guillaume Faury recently admitted he has little influence on his customers’ clients. Big oil firms still appear conservative, if not reluctant, about seeing their employees flying in the EC225. In addition to safety action already approved by European and UK authorities, redesign of the main gearbox shaft is under way, for retrofit starting in the second half of 2014.

Mangel på FDR i mindre helikoptre - Ikke akkurat shocking news

Uansett, en interessant diskusjon om emnet vil nok åpenbare seg. Her i Norge ville slike innretninger kunne ha gitt verdifull informasjon i en lang rekke ulykker. Og ikke minst spart mye tid.

EXCLUSIVE: Shocking truth about lack of black boxes in 
police helicopters (UK)

ONLY 11 helicopters out of the 180 which have crashed in the UK in the past 10 years were fitted with a black box flight data recorder, Express Online can disclose.

Eurocopter EC135 helicopter, the same model which crashed into a Glasgow pub, and a 'black box' 

We can also reveal that not one of the 22 helicopters run by the National Police Air Service (NPAS), which provides the aircraft for most of Britain's forces, is fitted with the devices.

Black boxes, officially know as Flight Data Recorders, can provide essential information for air crash investigators trying to establish what went wrong in the moments leading up to a crash.

Legally, only commercial aircraft above a certain weight are required to be fitted with a black box, meaning police helicopters are among those exempt.

There are now growing calls for the law to be looked into, after a Scotland Police helicopter crashed into a pub in Glasgow killing 10 people last month did not have a black box.

The Government says it has no plans to discuss reforms with the Civil Aviation Authority.

Labour's Shadow Transport Secretary Mary Creagh admitted people will be "surprised" to learn of the high number of helicopters without black boxes.

She said: "A black box could potentially speed up investigations and provide answers more quickly for grieving families and accident investigators. We will be looking at all aspects of flight safety as part of our policy review."

Parliament's Transport Select Committee will launch an investigation into helicopter safety in the New Year, and one of its members, MP Sarah Champion, said: "I will be particularly interested to see the evidence for and against black boxes in aircrafts as it does seem surprising that it's not compulsory at the moment."

I suspect after this accident there will be pressure for police helicopters to have them.

Leading aviation safety expert David Learmount believes the crash in Glasgow will lead to more pressure being put on governments at both a national and European level to make it mandatory for police helicopters to carry black boxes.

Mr Learmount said the main reason why they are currently not fitted is the expense.

Adding one to a helicopter can cost many thousands of pounds.

Mr Learmount said: "They are an expense. The police could fund one but that would put up the council tax if it had to come out of the police budget.

"I suspect after this accident there will be pressure for police helicopters to have them."

Fishy case

American flight crew overcome by fish fumes

Several American Airlines flight attendants were taken to a hospital in Miami Monday afternoon when they were overcome by a strong odor.

They were aboard Flight 281 as it was preparing to take off on a scheduled flight to Los Angeles when the pungent smell entered the cabin.

American spokeswoman Andrea Hughley explained that the odor emanated from a leaking cargo bin filled with fish.

Passengers were not directly impacted by the fumes, but were forced to return to the terminal.
The airline delayed the flight for five hours to replace the crew, unload the aromatic cargo and clean things up.

The flight resumed its California journey on Monday night

India lærer aldri

Under cloud DGCA appoints 'ineligible' flight inspector (India)

CHENNAI: Hardly a month after the US flight safety regulator warned of downgrading the Indian aviation sector for safety lapses and conflict of interest, it was found that a flight operations inspector (FOI) was appointed in violation of norms. Even after failing the pilot-in-command line test in his first attempt, M Khaleel Anwar was elevated to the post of examiner and subsequently as FOI, flouting civil aviation requirements (CAR) laid down by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).

The norms prevent pilots who fail the first command training from becoming an examiner or FOI. Moreover, a note sent by the Civil Aviation Safety Advisory Council (CASAC) to the DGCA said Anwar is holding a US passport (FOI posts are only for Indian citizens as the job involves handling classified aviation documents). It also said Anwar owns a Houston-based company that supplied software for DGCA's automation project. Anwar is also holding the post of chief pilot ATR with Jet Airways.

Indonesia - For oss en merkelig sak

An Indonesian politician couldn't get on a full flight, so he closed the airport

Marianus Sae, a district chief from the Indonesian island of Flores, found himself in a tight spot last weekend. He was visiting another city but couldn't get a seat on a fully booked flight home for a budget meeting. His solution: call his hometown airport and order security officers to block the runway with their cars, preventing the Merpati Nusantara Airlines plane from landing, and forcing its return.

"It is outrageous," an unrepentant Sae told the Jakarta Globe. "I begged for a ticket for five hours to fly to Ngada and their answer was: 'The flight is full.'" In another interview, he said, "The airline has hampered my state duty as the government official, it should be a lesson for its management."

After a public outcry, the country's transport ministry said Sae's move was unlawful, and that the matter had been resolved-but that the it had no plans to take legal action.

That will come as little surprise to most Indonesians, where corruption and abuse of power are common complaints. The country sits at 114th out of 175 countries in Transparency International's 2013 Corruption Perceptions Index. Last year 88% of Indonesians polled said government corruption was widespread; in October, the chief judge of the country's Constitutional Court was arrested for allegedly taking a bribe in return for a favorable verdict. Moreover, Sae's act is just another worry for those who travel on Indonesian airlines, which are struggling to deal with a surge in passengers and several recent fatal crashes.

tirsdag 24. desember 2013

Norwegian - Hjem til jul

Til sammen 238 passasjerer har stått fast i Florida i to døgn etter at Norwegians Dreamliner-fly har tekniske problemer.
Nye Dreamliner-problemer: Til sammen 238 passasjerer har stått fast i Florida i to døgn etter at Norwegians Dreamliner-fly har tekniske problemer. Foto: Larsen, Håkon Mosvold

Norwegian-fly omsider på vei hjem

Ett av Norwegians to Dreamliner-fly som har stått fast i Florida, er endelig på vei over Atlanteren. 138 passasjerer som skal med et fly til Oslo, kommer først fram julaften.
Publisert: 23.12.2013 - 20:33 Oppdatert: 23.12.2013 - 21:11
Saken er oppdatert.

NORAD følger julenissen alias Big Red One

Sjekk oppdatering: http://tinyurl.com/ozbnrsh

mandag 23. desember 2013

Incident reporting

European Pilots Praise New Incident Reporting Plan
The European Cockpit Association (ECA) praised as “a strong commitment to safety” last week’s decision by the European Parliament and its transport committee to develop a new incident-reporting system. The airline pilot’s union said the new legislation ensures a “just culture” with better protection of the safety incident data, the reporter and all the people involved, while also creating a comprehensive framework for collecting, storing and analyzing relevant safety incident data. The ECA acknowledged in a statement that the European Parliament clearly understands that the primary objective is not to apportion blame or liability but to improve the safety of Europe’s travelling public. “This regulation will provide the tools for controllers and pilots to report–in line with our professional commitment to safety–honest mistakes or mishaps in an open, no-blame environment,” commented ECA president Nico Voorbach. However, European officials have yet to announce an implementation date for the new reporting system.

Forsvaret kutter til beinet - Svekket overvåking av nordområdene

Denne blogger har 5000 timer på typen og vet en del om hvor viktig denne type overvåking er selv uten kald krig.

Slår alarm om svekket flypatruljering i nord

Overtidsnekt betyr dårligere kontroll over norsk suverenitet

Foto: Per Gram 1972

Publisert 23.12.13 - 13:32, endret 23.12.13 - 13:32 (VG NETT)

Sprengte budsjetter for de maritime patruljeflyene, betyr at Forsvaret ikke har fått utført tilstrekkelig kontroll av havgrensen mot Russland.

Luftforsvaret har fire P-3C Orion som brukes til maritim overvåkning og antiubåt-operasjoner. Flyene ble innfaset i 1989, og er utstyrt med våpen og avanserte overvåkningssystemer. Flyene har svært stor rekkevidde.

Kystvakten har to maritime overvåkningsfly av typen P-3N Orion som brukes til overvåkning og kontroll av fiskerisonenene utenfor Norskekysten – et område på syv ganger Norges landareal.

Motorer: 4 x Allison T56-A-14 Turboprop
Lengde: 35,6 m
Høyde: 10,5 m
Vingespenn: 30,4 m
Maksfart: 405 knop
Rekkevidde: ca. 8000 km
Maks flytid: 15 timer

Kilde: VG/Forsvaret

Foto: Per Gram

I et brev til forsvarsminister Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide tar de tillitsvalgte ved Andøya Flystasjon opp den svekkede evnen de har til å utføre såkalt «MPA i nordområdene».

Det dreier seg om bruken av Luftforsvarets maritime patruljefly, av typen P-3 Orion, som overvåker norsk suverenitet langs havgrensen mot Russland. Disse flyene har også deltatt i anti-pirat oppdrag utenfor Somalia-kysten tidligere.

- Vi tok dette opp fordi vi opplever et misforhold mellom de politiske signalene om maritim patruljering i nordområdene, og at vi samtidig er kuttet ned til beinet hva kapasitet angår, sier Stein-Håkon Eilertsen, tillitsvalgt i Norges Offisersforbund til VG.

Kuttet antall flytimer

I sommer ble budsjettet for bruk av Orion-flyene kuttet fra 2100 timer i 2013, til 1800 timer. I slutten av oktober nærmet man seg det antallet, og det medførte mer eller mindre full stopp.

I denne perioden ba Forsvarets operative hovedkvarter (FOH) i Bodø ved flere tilfeller om luftpatruljering, som Andøya Flystasjon ikke kunne utføre. Det får VG bekreftet fra FOH.

- Det stemmer at det ikke ble så mange oppdrag som vi ønsket. Det betyr at vi har hatt et operativt behov som er høyere enn det som ble levert, opplyser oberstløytnant Ivar Moen ved FOH.

Formålet med disse flyvningene er å holde FOH oppdatert på hva som skjer langs norskekysten, et oppdrag Moen beskriver som «alfa og omega» for Forsvaret.

Viktig sensor

- Orion-flyene er en av de viktigste sensorene som vi må ha for å ha full forståelse av situasjonsbildet langs kysten, og det situasjonsbildet er alfa og omega for vårt oppdrag. Det er en forståelse som FOH skal ha til enhver tid, og der Orion-flyene er en meget viktig brikke, sier Moen.

Luftforsvaret og Kystvakten har vanligvis seks Orion-fly stasjonert på Andøya, men to av disse er nå under oppgradering. På de gjenværende flyene har det vært mindre tekniske feil og delemangler som ikke er blitt utbedret på grunn av de stramme budsjettene, bekrefter FOH.

Forsvarsminister Ine Eriksen Søreide (H) skriver i et svar til de tillitsvalgte at «regjeringen mener at norsk tilstedeværelse og suverenitetshevdelse i nordområdene skal sikres og at Forsvaret må ha god situasjonsforståelse og tilstrekkelig operativ evne i nord».

Men hun legger samtidig til at: «Nødvendig og stram budsjettstyring medfører at det ikke er rom for intern omdisponering av ytterligere ressurser til Orion i 2013. Nødvendig og målrettet prioritering vil også være en del av virkeligheten i årene som kommer».

Forsvarsministeren ønsker ikke å gi VG en utdypende kommentar om saken, opplyser rådgiver Marita Hundershagen i Forsvarsdepartementet.