Ben Rauk (he’s one of three Bens at the Glasair Aviation factory in Arlington, Wash.), starts each day of the Build a Plane/GAMA marathon with a briefing and a “lesson of the day.” Today’s was on safety wiring. It might have been totally new territory to the students, but Rauk’s tutorials also proved enlightening to observers who [...]
On Day 2 of the Build a Plane/GAMA project, the builders from Saline, Mich., and Canby, Minn., kept up the same teen-fueled pace that they had set on day one. But it wasn’t all work and no play. All eight of the students got to take breaks in the form of airplane rides today, and [...]
The teens who came to Arlington, Wash., this week to work on two Glasair Sportsman aircraft did not come alone. The students from Saline, Mich., brought their teacher, Ed Redies, and a parent chaperone. The teens from Canby, Minn., brought their teacher, Dan Lutgen, and their principal, Bob Slaba. Slaba is not standing on the sidelines. He’s [...]
“Get ready to drink from the firehose.” If you’re in aviation, you’ve probably heard that phrase before—particularly if you did an accelerated rating or a type rating. Today I heard that phrase applied to the process of building an airplane. “Building an airplane” and “drinking from the firehose” are generally not concepts that you hear in [...]
Frank Thielert, founder of Thielert Aircraft Engines, which produces Centurion diesel engines for the aviation market, last week was jailed by a judge in a German bankruptcy court who reportedly considered him a "flight risk." According to the Google translation of a story in the Hamburg Abendblatt newspaper, the judge said Thielert faces several years in prison if convicted on charges that investors in his company were "systematically deceived." The Thielert AG company went public in 2005 and declared insolvency in 2008, but continues to operate. Sebastian Wentzler, a company spokesman, told AVweb in an email, "Frank Thielert is out of the company since summer 2008. The trials against Frank Thielert do not affect the business of the company in any way."
An extraordinary assembly of Merlin-powered warbirds took to the skies over Hamilton, Ontario on Father's Day weekend, providing sights and sounds not experienced in decades. The star of the show was Jerry Yagen's recently rebuilt de Havilland Mosquito (the only one of its type flying), and it flew in formation with the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum's Lancaster, alongside two Spitfires and two Hurricanes. AVweb's Russ Niles spoke with Mosquito pilot Mike Spalding of the Military Aviation Museum.
Last week, a group of Czech engineers flew a hybrid bicycle/multi-copter by remote control, but this week, another take on the flying-bicycle concept -- one that's already flown with live human pilots -- turned up in the news. This one is basically a lightweight powered-parachute with a bicycle attached as a means of traveling from your garage to your launch site. For a powered parachute, the launch site doesn't have to be much more than an open field. The folding bicycle tows a two-wheeled trailer that holds the fan. An optional tent creates an all-in-one door-to-campsite recreational vehicle. Its British creators have spent two years developing and test-flying a prototype, and now have launched a Kickstarter campaign with the hope of developing a production line.
Bell Helicopter introduced a new five-seat, entry-level helicopter at the Paris Air Show this week. The aircraft was developed to meet performance targets set by an advisory council of customers who will operate the aircraft for utility, training, private use, and law enforcement. "The SLS [short light single] class is both extremely competitive and price sensitive, so we collaborated with customers to incorporate their mission needs in a high-performance, high-value helicopter at a very competitive price," said John Garrison, Bell CEO. The helicopter will feature a high-visibility cabin with large cabin doors, a flat floor, and five forward-facing seats. It will cruise at 125 knots for up to about 360 nm and carry a useful load up to 1,500 pounds, the company said.
click for photosFlaris, a Polish company, introduced its prototype single-engine personal jet at the Paris Air Show this week. The all-composite airplane reportedly has begun taxi tests and first flight is expected soon. It weighs about 1,430 pounds and can carry five people. Top speed is over 375 knots, according to the company website, and the range is 1,350 nm. It can fly from grass strips as short as 820 feet. It glides well, the company says, and comes with a ballistic parachute that's packed in the nose. Also, the wings can be removed for easier storage. The cockpit features Garmin avionics. The engine is by Pratt & Whitney, but the company told a French news site they are still considering other options. Flaris said it plans to start production next year and has set a price of about $1.5 million.
Garmin's New Aviation VHF Radios Early this year, a new series of aviation VHF COM and NAV/COM radios, the GTR and GNC series, was announced by Garmin. As the replacement products for the popular SL 30 and SL 40 models, the GNC series NAV/COM radios include new features to reduce pilot workload, while also offering an affordable solution to meet the requirements of the 8.33 kHz channel spacing mandate recently enacted by the European Union under the Single European Sky (SES) initiative.
Sign MoU With Diamond Aircraft On Electric Propulsion System EADS and Siemens are entering into a long-term research partnership to introduce new electric propulsion systems that could help airlines lower their fuel bills and drive environmental performance. Together with their partner, Austria-based Diamond Aircraft, the companies are showcasing a second generation serial hybrid electric airplane at Le Bourget.
“The serial electric propulsion allows us to design airplanes with totally different characteristics than today. Vertical take-off and high-speed cruise can be realized in a much more efficient way.” Source: Diamond Aircraft owner Christian Dries at Le Bourget.