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News Letter 20 March 2019

Good day all

Hopefully by now everyone is geared up and ready for the long weekend, I know of a bunch of aviators that will be flying to the Stellenbosch Airshow from all over South Africa via Upington and Kleinzee some as far as Barberton in the Lowveld.

Stellenbosch Airshow FASHKOSH will take place on Saturday 22 March and promises to be a great event, we will bring you the full story in next weeks edition.

First airshow in Four years at Stellenbosch! This is going to be a beautiful airshow with plenty of formation flying, aerobatics, choppers and other stuff you don’t often see all together at other airshows. The organisers are bringing in plenty of market style food stalls and other things to enjoy on the lawn with the family while enjoying the finest, if not the only airshow in the fairest Cape!

Unfortunately, due to a complete lack of response the planned Fun Rally, that would have taken place at Virginia Airport, has been cancelled. SAPFA have decided to spend the time and resources at another venue later in the year.

For all the aviators that are planning some fun in the sky this weekend please be safe and remember “if there is doubt there is no doubt”.

With effect from 1 April 2019, RAASA functions will be integrated into the SACAA attached please find the official Industry Communiqué

Piper Aircraft Deliveries Increase by Almost 50% – Highest Level in Ten Years

Piper Aircraft, Inc. announced a 48% increase in aircraft deliveries for 2018 as well as a 38% increase in total aircraft billings.

Piper’s segment leading growth was distributed across both primary product lines, Trainer and M-Class aircraft. Global Piper trainer demand increased more than 50% YOY. Sales of the robust single engine Archer grew by nearly 50% YOY, while twin-engine Seminole deliveries rose 117%. Additionally, sales of Piper’s M-Class products, which include the M350, M500 and the M600, expanded by 36%, driving Piper’s total 2018 aircraft billings to $263M, up by more than $71M vs 2017. International deliveries of Piper products showed growth of 12%, with an increase in M-Class deliveries to Brazil being a primary factor.

In addition to Piper’s sales success, during 2018 Piper Aircraft announced the certification of G1000 NXi in the Seneca, M350 and M500s, the appointment of three new Piper dealers and the largest trainer order in company history. The continued rise in demand for Piper trainers drove order backlog to nearly 700 aircraft entering 2019 and had a positive Vero Beach community impact with a 14% employment increase to 1,000 plus total.

“2018 was an exceptional year for Piper Aircraft as we continued to deliver a measurable impact for customers, and our employees. Together with our world-class Dealer Partners the results reflect our unrelenting commitment to serving customers with quality and distinction,” said Simon Caldecott,

President and Chief Executive Officer at Piper Aircraft. “Over the past year, we have increased strategic investments in our facilities and products to better position Piper Aircraft to support the growing but stable demand for our diverse product lines. We also have expanded our efforts and investments to drive innovation while achieving strong financial results.”

Rolls-Royce Completes First Ground Test of Hybrid-Electric Propulsion System

Rolls-Royce says it plans to begin flight testing of its developmental hybrid propulsion system in 2021.

Rolls-Royce has begun ground testing a hybrid propulsion system using its M250 gas turbine engine for helicopters that the company says will clear the way for experimental flights on aircraft within two years.

The company said it successfully tested the hybrid-electric version of the M250 gas turbine in a ground demonstration setting using three operating modes: series hybrid, parallel hybrid and turbo-electric. The M250 hybrid is planned as a propulsion plant with power ranging from 500 kilowatts to 1 megawatt. The system will be used across a range of transport platforms to enable distributed electric propulsion, including eVTOLs (hybrid electric vertical take-off and landing vehicles), general aviation aircraft and hybrid helicopters.

• Series hybrid: In this configuration, the engine operates as a turbo-generator that charges an onboard battery system and does not contribute to thrust directly. All power required for thrust and other onboard systems is supplied by the battery.

• Parallel hybrid: In this configuration, the platform thrust is supplied by a combination of the engine (mechanical thrust) and the electrical system (electrical thrust), while the other power needs of the aircraft are met by the battery.

• Turbo-electric mode: In this configuration, the battery system is redundant. The engine operates as a pure turbo-generator supplying electric power for thrust and any other power needs on the aircraft.

The Rolls-Royce hybrid electric propulsion system demonstrator integrates the M250 gas turbine engine with a high energy density battery system, electric generators, power converters and an advanced power management and control system. The power management system optimizes overall propulsion performance in order for the system to be suitable across a variety of platforms, including eVTOL, while delivering efficiency gains, reduced noise and lower emissions.

Rolls-Royce engineers based in the United States, UK and Singapore worked together to develop the engine into a hybrid-electric propulsion system. The M250 gas turbine engine has powered more than 170 varieties of fixed-wing military, civilian aircraft and helicopters since its initial development.

The company selected this engine for its maturity, power-density, ease of maintenance, and high reliability. In the past half-century, M250 variants have logged more than 250 million flight hours and nearly 33,000 M250 engines have been delivered to customers.

Complete engine testing took place at Rolls-Royce’s facility in Indianapolis, where each component and sub-system of the hybrid engine was individually tested for electrical performance. These tests included simulating use across takeoff, cruise, landing and taxiing and confirmed the system’s suitability for a range of transport platforms including aircraft with a range of up to 1,000 miles and weighing up to 4,400 pounds. This would support the Rolls-Royce eVTOL concept that was unveiled during the Farnborough Air Show in England last year.

Nixus “Fly by Wire Sailplane” completes first test flight

Paulo Iscold's Nixus put air under its wings for the first time last week at Castle Airport in Merced, California. The goal of the Nixus project was to push the limits of the soaring sport, as well as bring innovation to general aviation.

The primary technical challenge was to develop an extremely high aspect ratio wing using fly by wire controls - the first time fly by wire technology has been used in a general aviation airplane, according to Iscold

First-flight test pilot was Jim Payne, chief pilot of the Airbus-Perlan Project. The flight was performed after three days of ground preparation, with the assistance of student members of CalPoly-SLO's Akaflieg group (Iscold is in his first year as a professor at SLO). The first flight is an important milestone to the project but is just the beginning of a new phase in this project, with a significant expansion of the flight envelope planned.

What makes Nixus truly unique is its fly-by-wire ailerons and flaps. The rudder, elevator and airbrake on the Nixus are mechanically linked. Iscold said there are 12 flaps on the wings that act both as flaps and ailerons concurrently. One great benefit of having a fly-by-wire system, Iscold said, is the ability to change the angle of deflection of the controls very quickly in a computer program. After the successful 35-minute first flight, Iscold will use the data to continue to tweak the design and widen the flight envelope. He expects to take the Nixus to the skies again in about two weeks.


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