A Journey into the Wonderful World of Aerobatics

By Dane Laing As a young boy, I always dreamed of taking to the air, when I left school I was adamant to start my flying career as soon as possible and was fortunate enough to realise this at a young age. I now have amassed over 5600 hours and currently flying for a local airline but one of my aviation dreams had still not been realised until fairly recently that is. I’ve always wanted to delve into the adrenaline-filled world of aerobatics and thanks to the dedicated guys at the Sport Aerobatics Club (SAC) this is finally becoming a reality. The journey began when a beautiful Vans RV4 appeared on the market, my father decided to purchase the machine giving me access to an aerobatic capable

Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 2020 as real as it gets

Ever since the first version was released in 1982, Microsoft's Flight Simulator has been known for its realism, from the aircraft to the flight performance to the geographical world around it. Now, Microsoft is planning to release the 13th version and once again they are raising the bar. After rigorous closed alpha testing Microsoft’s Xbox Game Studios and Asobo Studio announced that the next-gen Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 will be launched on 18 August, Pre-orders are already open. FS2020 will come in three editions, Standard ($59.99), Deluxe ($89.99) and Premium Deluxe ($119.99), with the more expensive versions featuring more planes and hand-crafted international airports. The defaul

E-Learning during Aviation your career

By Anthony Foxcroft I arrived at the company HQ for my first day as a new recruit, and after the welcoming session with the boss, we were ushered into a classroom to begin our type rating training. Each of us had a desk with a neatly stacked pile of books a foot high: FCOM, AFM, OM, QRH, Jepp plates, DG and CRM amongst a host of courses we would all need to complete. Job number 1 was to take the hefty update package and go through each of the books, manually updating pages. By contrast, my most recent conversion was an entirely paperless affair. Day 1 was spent handing out iPads, getting everyone up and running with company emails and logins and familiarising ourselves with where to find all

Embraer Develops Cargo Transportation Solutions for Commercial Aircraft

With the significant decline in the number of airline passengers and the booming demand for air cargo capacity, Embraer has developed cargo transportation solutions for its line of commercial aircraft. With fewer commercial flights, which carry both passengers and freight, there’s a critical need for more cargo space. “Embraer’s engineers rose to the challenge when our customers asked them if they could find a way for their Embraer aircraft to carry more cargo payload,” explained Johann Bordais, President & CEO, Embraer Services & Support. “Today, customers can choose from a portfolio of solutions to carry cargo in the cabins of their EMB 120s, ERJ 145s, and E-Jets.” ANAC, Brazil’s civil avi

International industry collaboration on Future Combat Air capability

UK, Sweden and Italy have begun trilateral industry discussions to strengthen collaboration between the three nations, as they develop world-leading future combat air capability. The new trilateral framework sees industry from the three nations bringing together their skills and expertise in the Combat Air sector to collaborate on the research and development of cutting-edge technologies. The three national industries comprise leading defence companies from the UK (BAE Systems, Leonardo UK, Rolls Royce and MBDA UK), Italy (Leonardo Italy, Elettronica, Avio Aero and MBDA Italia) and Sweden (Saab and GKN Aerospace Sweden). Today’s announcement builds on bilateral discussions, which have taken

British Airways bid Farewell to The Queen of the Skies

British Airways on Friday, July 17, 2020, announced, with great sadness, that its fleet of Boeing 747 aircraft, fondly known as ‘The Queen of the Skies’, are likely to have flown their last scheduled commercial service. After nearly five decades of service and millions of miles flown around the globe, it is proposed that the airline’s remaining fleet of 31 747-400 aircraft will be retired with immediate effect as a result of the devastating impact the Covid-19 pandemic has had on the airline and the aviation sector, which is not predicted to recover to 2019 levels until 2023/24. Just a year ago, British Airways lovingly re-painted three of their “jumbo jets” in heritage colours to mark the c

The maiden flight of the Leonardo M-346LFFA

On 13 July 2020, the first prototype of the Leonardo M-346 LFFA light combat aircraft made its first flight from Leonardos factory field Venegono. In 2016, Leonardo launched a programme to develop the M-346 (basic) trainer as a combat aircraft, an evolution which had been planned for the design already. In July 2016, The Fighter Trainer version was launched at the Farnborough Airshow. The Fighter Trainer was a development from the M-346AJT (Advanced Jet Trainer), which was further evolved into the new M-346FA (Fighter Attack) version. This version features the introduction of reinforcement of the airframe, some elements of the wing, and the rear fuselage section. The aircraft can be equipped

Boeing and Etihad to test ecoDemonstrator 787-10

Boeing and Etihad Airways have partnered to use a 787-10 Dreamliner to test ways to reduce emissions and noise as part of the aerospace company's ecoDemonstrator program before the airline accepts delivery of the aircraft later this year. The collaboration, which includes extensive sound measurement testing with industry partners, builds on a strategic sustainability alliance Boeing and Etihad formed in November 2019. "This is the latest program under Etihad's industry-leading strategic partnership with Boeing, focusing on innovating real-world solutions to the key sustainability challenges facing the aviation industry," Etihad Aviation Group Chief Executive Officer Tony Douglas said. "The e

Bell Autonomous Pod Transport Completes Beyond Visual Line of Sight Flight

In the race to provide viable, aerial solutions to move goods and information, Bell’s Autonomous Pod Transport (APT) surpassed a significant step in this journey: beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) flight. Delivering goods and information to critical – sometimes inaccessible – locations calls for an aircraft that can fly autonomously, over long distances and land vertically. At the beginning of the year, Bell’s APT proved that it can handle this type of flight through its first BVLOS flight carrying 60lbs of payload at a testing site in Oklahoma. This new development is made possible through Bell’s partnership with the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma (CNO). In an agreement announced in late 2019

Virgin Atlantic Positions itself for Post Covid-19 Future

Virgin Atlantic has taken a big step forward in securing its future, by launching a court backed process as part of a solvent recapitalisation of the airline and holiday business, with a Restructuring Plan that once approved and implemented, will keep Virgin Atlantic flying. The Restructuring Plan is based on a five-year business plan, and with the support of shareholders Virgin Group and Delta, new private investors and existing creditors, it paves the way for the airline to rebuild its balance sheet and return to profitability from 2022. The recapitalisation will deliver a refinancing package worth £1.2bn over the next 18 months in addition to the self-help measures already taken, includin

P-8A Poseidon, The Submarine Hunter

Earlier this year the US. Navy received its 100th P-8A aircraft from Boeing as the global fleet, which also includes the Indian navy and the Australian and CU. air forces approach 300,000 flight hours of hunting submarines and providing aerial reconnaissance capabilities around the world. “We’re honoured by the Navy’s faith and confidence in our employees and the P-8 system,” said Stu Voboril, vice president and program manager. "Our focus has been, and will be, on delivering the world’s best maritime patrol aircraft, bar none.” The P-8 is a proven long-range multi-mission maritime patrol aircraft capable of broad-area, maritime and coastal operations. A military derivative of the Boeing 737

Team Nightjar, Australian Defence Force’s Special Operations

Airbus Helicopters has joined hands with over 20 Australian partners to form Team Nightjar, as the consortium launches its solution to Project LAND 2097 Phase 4. Under this Project, the Commonwealth of Australia is seeking a fleet of helicopters to support the Australian Defence Force’s Special Operations. Bringing together Australia’s best industry capabilities and academia, the Team Nightjar members include Cablex, Cyborg Dynamics, Deakin University, DEWC, ECLIPS, Ferra Engineering, Helicopter Logistics, Helimods, Kinetic Fighting, Kratos Australia, Microflite, PREDICT Australia, QinetiQ Australia, Safran Helicopter Engines Australia, Seeing Machines, Sigma Bravo, Rusada, TAFE NSW, Tagai M

Theoretical Knowledge at Interviews for Aviators

By Anthony Foxcroft, CFI at Aviation Training. A few years ago, I attended an interview at an airline in the Middle East. I was successful and was offered a position, and while I ultimately decided not to pursue it, the experience was interesting. There were 15 candidates from all around the world hoping to be chosen, and for many of them, get their big break in the industry. With a career on the line, everyone is spruced up and on their best behaviour. The very first round of the selection consisted of a 50 question multiple-choice exam of questions drawn from the ATPL exams. An hour later I was the only candidate left and 14 others had been sent home. That got me thinking about how that oc

85 Years of Bell Helicopter innovation

It started with the renowned Bell 47 Model - the “Bubble” - becoming the first certified helicopter for civilian use. Ready to jump into the civil market, Larry Bell concocted a three-step approach to introduce helicopters to everyday civilians and businesses. Today at Bell, this three-step strategy to bring vertical lift to new audiences has not changed; it’s evolved. The first step starts with building skilled pilots. Needing more people to operate these new vertical lift innovations, he and a team of several helicopter pilots began training pilots and mechanics to fly and sustain Bell aircraft. This legacy of developing dynamic aviators carries on today through their Bell Training Academy

The “New” SAA, Creditors Approve BRP’s Plan

The South African Airways (SAA) business rescue plan (BRP) has been approved by 86% of the vote at Tuesday’s creditors' meeting. This paves the way for the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) to launch a new airline with an interim board and CEO. The “New” SAA will once again call on the taxpayer to provide the funds in the form of a R16 billion injection to get off the ground and pay creditors. Money will also be needed for the 1,000 staff who will be hired to be part of the new airline. Phillip Saunders has been appointed as the interim CEO that will be responsible for the implementation of the latest plan. He will be required to work closely with the new and reconfigured interim board,

AH-64 Apache Helicopters, 2500 and Counting

Boeing recently delivered its 2,500th AH-64 Apache helicopter, an E-model Apache for the US. Army, from the company’s production line in Mesa, Arizona. The first production AH-64, an A-model Apache, rolled off the assembly line on September 30, 1983, and was delivered by Boeing heritage company McDonnell Douglas to the US. Army in January 1984. Today, Boeing is producing and delivering AH-64E helicopters to a growing list of customers around the world. “The Apache has built an impressive legacy of success, and is well-positioned to bring relevant technologies and capabilities that defence forces require today and in the future,” said Kathleen Jolivette, vice president of Attack Helicopter pr

Qantas bids farewell to the Boeing 747 after almost 50 years Service

Qantas has announced a program of events to farewell it's last remaining Boeing 747 and provide Australians with the opportunity to say goodbye to the much loved “Queen of the Skies” ahead of its retirement from the national carrier’s fleet. The airline will operate three one-hour “farewell jumbo joy flights” departing from Sydney, Canberra and Brisbane, in response to requests from employees and customers for one final chance to fly on the aircraft. Qantas 747 Fleet Captain Owen Weaver said the 747 has a special place in the hearts of many Australians. “The 747 has been a magnificent aircraft and it’s fitting that we celebrate the end of five decades of history-making moments for the nation

The Brazilian Air Force C-390 Millennium

The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) took delivery of the third multi-mission medium airlift C-390 Millennium in the series manufactured by Embraer. The aircraft will be operated by First Troop Transport Group (1st GGT). Similar to the first two units delivered in 2019 and the additional 25 which will be delivered to the FAB, this third unit is prepared to perform aerial refuelling missions, with the KC-390 Millennium designation. The C-390 Millennium was developed as a joint project between the Brazilian Air Force and Embraer to set new standards for efficiency and productivity in its category while delivering, what is claimed to be, the lowest life-cycle cost in the medium airlift market. The air

Russian UAC Be-200ES Amphibious Aircraft deployed in Turkey

Two Russian Be-200ES amphibious aircraft have arrived in Turkey and from June 16 will begin work on suppressing the spread of forest wildfires in the Republic of Turkey. The signing of the Forest fire-fighting service agreement and the aircraft deployment was organized by the United Aircraft Corporation (PJSC UAC powered by Rostec State Corporation) with the assistance of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of Civil Defence, Emergencies and Disaster Relief of the Russian Federation and the active support of the State Corporation Rostec Representative Office in Ankara. The request for help in controlling forest fires in the coming hot season came from Re

ICAO, Singapore and the United Kingdom Join Forces for the good of Aircrew

Singapore and the United Kingdom (UK) are commencing a series of trials to test the crew module of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Council Aviation Recovery Taskforce (CART) Take-off guidelines. These guidelines aim to reduce the public health risk to air passengers, aircrew, airport staff while strengthening confidence among the travelling public. ICAO, Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS), the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority, Changi Airport, Heathrow Airport, British Airways and Singapore Airlines are participating in these trials. The trials will test the measures for aircrew throughout the travel journey between Singapore and the UK. The measures incl