mandag 29. februar 2016

Helicopter - Looks like an advanced Lama - AINalerts

February 29, 2016
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Marenco Swisshelicopter Flies Second
SKYe Prototype
Marenco Swisshelicopter’s second flight-test SKYe SH09
prototype, dubbed P2, made its maiden flight on Friday from
the company’s headquarters at Mollis Airport in Switzerland.
The helicopter took off at 5:24 p.m. local time with chief test
 pilot Richard Trueman at the controls and flight-test engineer
Peter Wittwer analyzing real-time data.
"This first flight of the second prototype of the SKYe SH09 was
a total success, all the test objectives were easily achieved and
the aircraft performed extremely well,” Trueman said after the
flight. P2, which is now the main test vehicle, has been fitted
with a new rotor head and blades intended to reduce vibration
and complexity on the rotor head, while enhancing “tolerance to
future upgrades.” The initial flight verified the lower vibration
 and noise levels, Marenco said.
Meanwhile, the company is building P3, the first conforming
prototype, and expects to set up its production line for the SKYe
later this year. EASA certification of the all-composite helicopter,
initially planned for the second half of this year, has slipped to
next year, with FAA validation to follow in 2018.

Drones and flight safety - Curt Lewis

Drone flies within 30 feet of passenger jet landing at Heathrow

Multiple close-misses near London revealed in UK air safety report, plenty more in the US.

Part of a report of a September near-miss between an Airbus passenger jet and a "helicopter drone" very close to Heathrow.

File this under the category of "drone pilots trying to ruin it for everybody." According to a safety incident report published by the United Kingdom's Airprox air safety board, an Airbus A319 landing at Heathrow International Airport last September narrowly avoided a collision with a drone flying at an altitude of 500 feet as the jet was on its final approach. The pilots reported the small hovering helicopter-style drone passed about 25 yards to the left of the cockpit and just 20 feet above the aircraft.

The A319's wingspan is 112 feet, so that would mean the drone missed the airliner by as little as 30 feet. The pilot reported that there was no time once the drone was sighted to take evasive action. The pilot reported the drone to air traffic controllers, and the police were dispatched. However, the drone pilot was not found. The incident was classified as meeting risk category A-the highest level of incident covered by the reporting system short of an actual collision.

The drone was not detected by air traffic control radar, so the only details of the event and how close the aircraft came to striking the drone are the pilot's estimate of distance. In the UK, drones are limited to flight below 400 feet and are banned from flying in controlled airspace (like that around Heathrow) without permission from air traffic controllers. As the report noted, UK Civil Aviation Authority rules require a drone to stay within visual line of sight of the pilot-a maximum of 500 meters (1,640 feet) horizontally and 400 feet vertically from the operator.

BA has left Las Vegas - Curt Lewis

Jet that caught fire on McCarran runway has left Las Vegas

The British Airways Boeing 777 that aborted a takeoff at McCarran International Airport in September flies out of McCarran International Airport on Friday, Feb. 26, 2016. Courtesy, Clark County Department of Aviation

The British Airways Boeing 777 that caught fire on a McCarran International Airport runway in September and has been parked ever since for inspections and repairs has left Las Vegas.

McCarran and British Airways officials confirmed that the twin-engine jet departed McCarran at 1:33 p.m., landing at Southern California Logistics Airport in Victorville, Calif., at 3:06 p.m.

Repair crews replaced the jet's left engine and tested it Thursday night. Workers also patched a section of the aircraft's port-side hull as part of the repair process.

According to FlightAware, which tracks flights worldwide, the aircraft flew southeast over the Phoenix area before turning west, then northwest to land at the Victorville airport where the plane is expected to be painted before being flown to the United Kingdom.

Southern California Logistics Airport was formerly George Air Force Base and has more maintenance capabilities than McCarran.

Crews took advantage of Runway 25R/7L - McCarran's longest - being closed for repairs to put the replaced engine through a series of high-performance tests before the plane was flown. McCarran officials had warned people on social media that controlled aircraft engine testing could cause "intermittent noise, smoke and activity on the airfield" Thursday night, but didn't specify that it was the British Airways plane.

The departure ends the jet's 171-day stay in Las Vegas, during which British Airways paid $375 a day in parking fees.

The jet, a Boeing 777-200ER, was scheduled to fly as British Airways Flight 2276 from McCarran to London's Gatwick International Airport on Sept. 8.

Midway through its takeoff run, before the plane lifted off the ground, the jet's left engine experienced an uncontained failure that started a fire. Debris spewed out of the engine and onto the runway.

The pilot shut down the engine and aborted the takeoff and while McCarran's emergency response crews sped to the burning plane, the plane's 157 passengers and 13 crew members began evacuating on emergency slides.

Officials reported 14 people suffered minor injuries, most of them as a result of a rough escape down the emergency slides. The runway was closed for four hours.

Nepal flight safety - Curt Lewis

Plane crash shines light on safety issues again (Nepal)

Issues of accountability and a general lack of safety culture are routinely cited by experts as the major factors behind the poor performance of airlines.

Feb 26, 2016- The crash of Tara Air Flight 193 on Wednesday has again spotlighted Nepal's poor air safety record. The Canadian-made Twin Otter aircraft slammed into the Himalayan foothills on a flight from Pokhara to Jomsom killing all 23 aboard.

In 2013, Nepali airlines had been put in the bad books of the International Civil Aviation Organization (Icao) and the European Commission (EC) as being unsafe to fly. After the latest incident, getting the significant safety concern (SSC) tag given to Nepal removed will be even more difficult.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (Caan) had said last December that it expected Icao to remove the SSC tag by July 2016 as most of the safety problems it had raised had been dealt with.

Flying in Alaska - Curt Lewis

FAA's struggles in Alaska a problem for everyone who flies here

OPINION: Dangers of flying in Alaska are only made worse by lack of oversight staffing and smart decisions both before and during flights. Pictured: National Transportation Safety Board investigator Brice Banning at the site of the fatal Alaska Central Express crash northeast of Dillingham in March 2013.

Last Friday the National Transportation Safety Board released final reports for two multiple-fatality accidents in St. Mary's (2013) and Kwethluk (2014). Both aircraft were operated by Hageland Aviation as part of the family of airlines known previously as Era Alaska and now Ravn Alaska. While the Kwethluk crash occurred during a training flight and was determined to be due to the check airman's actions, the board found that in St. Mary's the pilot, flight locators, company and Federal Aviation Administration were at fault.

These crashes were the last in a line of accidents and incidents over two years that prompted the NTSB to issue an urgent safety recommendation to the FAA in 2014 regarding Ravn's safety and regulatory compliance. The FAA was also directed to audit its own oversight of the air group. A review of recent commercial aviation accidents in Alaska reveals that the agency's struggles with Ravn were not an isolated case.

Heli-Expo - AINalerts

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February 29, 2016
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HAI Head Still Bullish on Helo Market
On the eve of the start of Heli-Expo 2016 in Louisville, Helicopter Association International president Matt Zuccaro remains bullish about the status of the industry, despite the definite headwinds faced by some sectors.
“One thing I think we all realize and acknowledge is the offshore industry right now is not performing the way we would like it to,” Zuccaro told AIN on Sunday at the Kentucky Exposition Center, noting the recent slump in rotorcraft usage and postponed orders due to depressed energy prices. “I’ve been doing this long enough that in effect this has happened previously and the good news to this story is we’ve always recovered and come back stronger.”
While that specific segment has encountered a sustained slowdown, Zuccaro noted increases in sectors such as air medical and air tours among others, which have helped buoy the industry somewhat on the aggregate and allowed operators to seek new opportunities. “They’ve moved into other areas of business in order to keep those aircraft active and to keep their personnel employed, flying and maintaining,” he said. “They’re doing what we do best; we’re survivors and we take advantage of the versatility of the aircraft to do other missions while waiting for their main segments to recover.”
Bell’s Snyder Focusing on Innovation
Mitch Snyder assumed the helm as president and CEO of Bell Helicopter late last year following the resignation of John Garrison. He said not to expect any big changes at Bell under his administration, but “you'll see increased emphasis on innovation.”
Even in a challenging market, Snyder said Bell will continue high levels of spending on innovation, research and development to both refresh existing products and bring transformative technologies to market. “We’re going to continue to do the product refreshes we’ve been doing, but we are putting a lot more emphasis into those big leaps in technology that are going to be the game changers. I won’t tell you exactly what we are working on, but we are going to be exploring a lot of new areas. We do have a list and we are working on them.”
Bell is increasing spending on R&D, but Snyder declined to reveal the amount. He hinted that new models may be coming. “We’re putting a heavy emphasis on product refresh, but I really want to spend some money now on technology types. It could be a new airframe, a new clean-sheet [design] or an upgrade to an existing product. We will be increasing that spending. There are no time frames. When I say I’m thinking of some clean-sheet designs, that’s out in the future.”
Read Expanded Version

Sikorsky Progresses on Autonomous Technologies
Sikorsky’s Innovations group continues to progress on a spectrum of autonomous technologies as it preps its third optionally piloted helicopter for demonstration trials early next year. The company has been retrofitting a 1979 UH-60A obtained from the U.S. Army with a kit that incorporates its complete Matrix technology from full-authority control to other technologies that pave the way for autonomous missions. “We want to demonstrate the fact that you don’t have to design this technology in new aircraft. You can retrofit it in old aircraft and retrofit it in a reliable fashion,” said Igor Cherepinsky, chief of Sikorsky’s Autonomy Programs.
The aged Black Hawk is the next step of Sikorsky’s Matrix program, which has demonstrated a range of autonomous capabilities from technologies that assist the pilot to aircraft remotely controlled on the ground that can interface with remote-controlled ground vehicles.
The program, Cherepinsky said, is designed to look at “a spectrum of what is needed most for assistance. That goes anywhere from making current products safer and easier to fly…to automating missions where the pilot starts to become more of a mission operator or a mission manager.” Sikorsky is exploring possibilities where the operator could be in the back of the aircraft or on the ground.

USAF`s new bomber - Top secret until now - AVweb

The Air Force's new long-range stealth bomber will be designated the B-21 and the first artist renderings of the aircraft show an angular flying wing with recessed engines and a smooth elongated teardrop fuselage. Reuters reported the bomber drawings were unveiled by U.S. Air Force Secretary Deborah James at the annual Air Warfare Symposium. The name of the half-billion-dollar-plus bomber will be chosen in a contest among service members, she said. The aircraft, which will form the core of the Air Force's strategic bombing capability, will be built by Northrop Grumman. Overall cost of the program, which includes 100 aircraft, is expected to be about $80 billion, but the Air Force has said it's paying $511 million for each aircraft in 2010 dollars.
The program has been shrouded in secrecy for security and because of the bidding process but the Air Force has promised to provide more detail on the aircraft, its systems and capabilities next month. Some of the secrecy was lifted when Boeing and Lockheed Martin, which lost the contract to Northrop Grumman, announced they were dropping legal and procedural protests over the bid process. Legislators want a more transparent development process than the secretive one that led to cancellation of the B-2 program after only 21 of 132 aircraft were built.

Whistleblower compensated - Alaska - Rotor&Wing

Friday, February 26, 2016

OSHA Orders Reinstatement, Damages of Alaskan Whistleblower Pilot

The U.S. Dept. of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has ordered an Alaska aviation company to pay years of back wages and $100,000 in compensatory damages and to reinstate a pilot who had been suspended, then fired and ostracized among the close-knit industry for reporting safety concerns at work.
Bald Mountain Air Services violated federal whistleblower laws with its actions against the employee in 2012. With 35 years of aviation experience, the pilot for the Homer-based company raised repeated safety concerns at work ranging from missed drug tests for pilots to poor recordkeeping.
“Voicing safety concerns at work should never cost someone their job,” said OSHA Acting Regional Administrator Galen Blanton. “This employee should be hired back, compensated and treated fairly from here on out.”
In addition to paying compensatory damages, OSHA’s order requires Bald Mountain Air Services to expunge the pilot's employment records of any reference to the exercise of his rights under federal whistleblower law and any reference to the adverse actions taken against him.
Both the respondent and complainant have 30 days from the receipt of these findings to file objections and to request a hearing before an administrative law judge. If no objections are filed, the findings will become final and not subject to court review.
OSHA enforces the whistleblower provisions of more than 21 statutes protecting employees who report violations of various commercial motor carrier, airline, nuclear, pipeline, environmental, public transportation agency, consumer product, motor vehicle safety, railroad, maritime, healthcare reform, food safety, securities and financial reform laws.

Nasjonal Transportplan - Avinor


Plangrunnlag - Nasjonal transportplan 2018-2029

Avinor - 29-02-2016 10:00 CET
Statens vegvesen, Jernbaneverket, Kystverket og Avinor legger fram sitt felles plangrunnlag til Nasjonal transportplan for årene 2018-2029. Her er noen viktige elementer i etatene og Avinors plangrunnlag:
Samfunnets mobilitetSamfunnets mobilitet opprettholdes, og befolkningsvekst, handel og økonomisk vekst vil føre til at transportomfanget øker. I 2029 blir det 15 prosent flere personreiser. Lange reiser – definert som lengre enn 70 km – øker mer enn korte reiser. Det totale omfanget for godstransport vil øke med opp mot 20 prosent i løpet av NTP-perioden 2018-29.
KlimastrategienEn bærebjelke i NTP-oppdraget er en klimastrategi for lavutslippssamfunnet. Transportetatene mener det er mulig å få ned klimagassutslippene i sektoren med om lag 50 prosent innen 2030, selv når det blir mer transport. De overordnede grepene er å tilskynde null- og lavutslippsteknologi i alle transportformer, ta i bruk bærekraftig biodrivstoff i stort omfang og legge til rette for nullvekst i privatbilisme i mange byområder.
ByområdeneMange byområder må innrette seg på nullvekst i personbiltrafikken. Dette må skje ved overgang til mer bruk av kollektivtransport, sykling og gåing. Bolig- og næringsområder utvikles slik at det fremmer lavutslipp i transportsektoren.
Staten engasjerer seg med bymiljøavtaler i ni byområder. Statens økonomiske bidrag økes med mer enn 60 prosent sammenlignet med inneværende NTP. Partene i disse avtalene forplikter seg til å styrke miljøvennlige transportformer.
Sammenhengende sykkelekspressveger er et nytt, offensivt tiltak for å få flere til velge sykkel til og fra jobb.
Staten går inn med 50 prosent i store kollektivinvesteringer i byene som for eksempel bybanen i Bergen, superbuss i Trondheim, bussveien i Stavanger, metrotunnel i Oslo og Fornebubanen i Oslo og Akershus.
GodsoverføringTransportetatene foreslår en godsstrategi som vil gi overføring av gods fra veg til sjø og bane. Dette skjer gjennom økt satsing på godstransport på jernbane, tilskuddsordning for gods på sjø og bedre sammenknytning mellom transportformene i knutepunkter der dette gir økt godsomslag. Samtidig vil volumveksten i hver av transportformene bli større enn overføringspotensialet. Av hensyn til effektiv, miljøvennlig og sikker godstransport er det derfor nødvendig at alle transportformene utvikles for å oppnå målsettingene.
Etterslepet fjernesTransportetatene anbefaler å fjerne etterslepet i vedlikehold på vegene, jernbanen og kystens installasjoner i løpet av den neste NTP-perioden.
Drift og vedlikehold har fått økte midler de siste årene slik at forfallet i infrastrukturen har stanset. Dette er et godt utgangspunkt for å ruste opp veier, jernbane og kystens infrastruktur til en mest mulig robust og driftssikker standard.
Totalt er det anslått et etterslep på 55-60 milliarder kroner innenfor riksveg, jernbane og kyst.
Teknologiutvikling i transportsektorenIntelligente transportsystemer (ITS) bidrar til sikkerhet, effektivitet og bedre overganger mellom transportformer. Eksempler på slik teknologi er trafikantinformasjon, trafikk- og flåtestyring, førerstøttesystemer, navigasjon, samt drift av infrastruktur og betalingssystemer.
Mer bruk av droner innen overvåking, inspeksjon og kartlegging gir store muligheter og reduserer risiko.
På lufthavnene kan vi komme til å få selvkjørende biler og økt bruk av fjernstyring av tårntjenestene.
Internasjonale forbindelserGlobaliseringen slår inn i transportsektoren med økt etterspørsel etter transport, både grenseoverskridende godstransport og personreiser med fly.
Finland, Russland, Sverige og Norge har dialog om utviklingen av de grensekryssende forbindelsene. I februar åpnet godskorridor 3 på jernbanenettet mellom Skandinavia og Palermo (ScanMed). Denne våren leveres en rapport om utvikling av jernbanen mellom Oslo og Gøteborg, og den vil bli fulgt opp med en konseptvalgutredning (KVU).
Transportetatene vil videreføre det internasjonale samarbeidet i nordområdene med Joint Barents Transport Plan, og det er avtalt et samarbeid mellom Norge og Finland om utviklingen av E8 og rv. 93. Norge og Sverige samarbeider om utviklingen av Ofotbanen. Sikkerhet til sjøs utvikles videre i det arktiske området gjennom BarentsWatch og annet multilateralt samarbeid.
Arbeidet med NTP-utredningenEtatenes utredning ledes av en styringsgruppe med direktørene i Statens vegvesen, Jernbaneverket, Kystverket og Avinor. Denne gruppen har vært ledet av jernbanedirektør Elisabeth Enger.
Hovedtall i NTP-utredningenDen økonomiske basisrammen til Statens vegvesen, Jernbaneverket og Kystverket er i gjennomsnitt 59,7 milliarder kroner pr år. Her inngår midler til Nye Veier AS på 5,1 milliarder kroner pr år. Etatene er bedt om å foreslå hvordan midlene skal brukes ved lav ramme på 47,8 milliarder kroner per år, middels ramme på 71,7 milliarder kroner pr år, samt høy ramme på 77,7 milliarder kroner per år inklusive midlene til Nye Veier AS.
I vedlagte PDF ligger følgende pressemeldinger:
  1. Oversikt Plangrunnlag - Nasjonal transportplan 2018-2029 
  2. Klimautfordringene: Klimautslippene må kuttes 
  3. Drift og vedlikehold: Forfallet stanset, etterslepet skal fjernes
  4. Trafikksikkerhet: Nye mål om økt sikkerhet i transportsektoren
  5. Prosjekter: Store satsninger i neste transportplan
Avinor har ansvar for de 46 statlig eide lufthavnene og flysikringstjenesten for sivil og militær luftfart i Norge. Dette nettverket binder Norge sammen - og Norge sammen med verden.
Avinor er en drivkraft i miljøarbeidet i luftfarten og en pådriver for å redusere de samlede klimagassutslippene fra norsk luftfart. Selskapet har en ledende rolle i arbeidet med utvikling og leveranse av biodrivstoff til fly.
Avinor bidrar hvert år til en sikker og effektiv reise for omkring 50 millioner flypassasjerer. Om lag halvparten reiser til og fra Oslo Lufthavn.
Over 3.000 medarbeidere har ansvar for å planlegge, bygge ut og drive et samlet lufthavn- og flysikringssystem. Avinor finansieres gjennom luftfartsavgifter og salg på flyplassene.
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fredag 26. februar 2016

Drones` management - Avionics Today

Friday, February 26, 2016

Unmanned Traffic Management to Help in Safe Expansion of Commercial UAS

Woodrow Bellamy III 
[Avionics Today 02-25-2016] As the FAA prepares to launch an Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) to develop performance-based standards for Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) flight operations, research and development on a key technology is occurring behind the scenes at the various UAS test sites throughout the U.S. The widespread use and adoption of operational intelligence and unmanned traffic management could be a key factor to enabling the future expanded safe integration of UAS operations into commercial airspace.
Simulyze unmanned operational intelligence tool. Photo: Simulyze.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is leading the charge in the research and development of a low altitude UAS Traffic Management (UTM) system. NASA's research is currently focusing on two types of future UTM systems: a portable one capable of moving between geographic areas, and a persistent system capable of supporting low altitude operations with continuous coverage for a specific area. 
The UTM system would also enable low-altitude airspace operations by providing services such as airspace design, corridors, dynamic geo-fencing, severe weather and wind avoidance, congestion management, terrain avoidance, route planning and re-routing, separation management, sequencing and spacing, and contingency management. In August 2015, NASA concluded Technology Capability Level 1 (TCL) testing on a UTM concept that addressed UAS operations for agriculture, firefighting and infrastructure monitoring with a focus on geo-fencing, altitude and scheduling UAS trajectories and flights, which proved the future UTM concept is viable. In October this year, the agency will perform TCL2 testing of the same concept with a focus on beyond line of sight operations. 
Simulyze is one company that is working both with NASA and the FAA to help expand commercial UAS operations with a focus on safety and preventing UAS-UAS as well as UAS-manned aircraft collisions. Over the last 15 years, Simulyze's operational intelligence platform, Flight Control, has provided comprehensive air, land and sea visualization tools for the U.S. military and intelligence community. Now, the company has launched Mission Insight, to provide the type of situational awareness and data about airspace conditions for UAS, much in the way current ATM tools provide similar information for manned aircraft operations. 
"We have worked with several of the UAS test sites, have used the system to integrate their customer aircraft into the airspace collect the flight data and automate some of the reports they have to provide to the FAA," Simulyze President and CEO Kevin Gallagher told Avionics Magazine
Gallagher said the goal is to provide the same type of data and information for UAS operators that current ATM technology provides for manned aircraft operators. 
"We are starting to work with some of the commercial entities that have obtained some of the 333 exemptions, and we have found that the commercial UAS operator needs to know where all the other aircraft in the area are, you need to keep track of the weather, winds on the ground, winds aloft, and more. There’s a lot that goes into flying a UAS, and if you are really trying to expand operations, you really do need a capability to pull all that data together, understand your operations," said Gallagher. 
Since introducing its UAS registration process in December, the FAA has reported that more than 370,000 small UAS have been registered for use in the National Airspace System. The agency has also granted a total of 3,517 total Section 333 exemptions, to permit the operation of UAS for commercial applications. While the FAA’s current regulations greatly limit the altitudes at which UAS can be recreationally or commercially operated, those UAS are joining a NAS that already features 87,000 manned flights daily with 5,000 airplanes in the airspace at any given time.
That’s where Gallagher believes operational intelligence can make a major difference: to interpret, standardize and incorporate data from a variety of sources, such as weather information, GPS tracking, radar intelligence and present it in a common operating picture for UAS operations.
“One of the concepts of the NASA UTM is to put that data into a central repository and make it available to all UAS operators within a certain area, as well as the manned aircraft operations in that area so that pilots of each type aircraft can safely operate around each other,” said Gallagher. 
“There’s a lot of data that you can gather to discover how the UAS is behaving in certain environments, how is it interacting with other aircraft, and how is it performing its mission. This operational intelligence area is something that we think is key to help move this commercial UAS industry forward,” he added. 
The next key commercial UAS regulatory milestones for the FAA are to include the new ARC’s report on performance-based standards scheduled for completion in April and the release of official small UAS regulations expected this summer.