John Croft

John Croft
Senior Avionics & Safety Editor,
Aviation Week & Space Technology

Based in Washington, John is Aviation Week’s senior editor for avionics and safety. Along with being a part-owner of a 1977 Piper Archer II, John is an FAA-certified flight instructor and former NASA engineer who specialized in avionics and control systems for Earth-orbiting satellites.
After leaving NASA in 2000, he earned a Master’s Degree in Journalism from the University of Maryland and went to work for several aerospace publications, most recently with Flight International as Americas Editor.

Next-Generation EFBs Integral To NextGen Cockpit 
With the capabilities of installed avionics but more flexibility, next-generation electronic flight bags—not tablets—will bring legacy cockpits into the secure NextGen era.
Wind, Fatigue Among Factors Under Scrutiny In Air Canada A320 Underrun 

Canadian and Airbus investigators will scrutinize pilot actions, potential fatigue, wind conditions and a non-precision instrument-approach procedure for Runway 05 at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport, following an underrun by an Air Canada Airbus A320 (C-FTJP) during a low-visibility landing in a snow storm with gusty crosswinds just after midnight on March 29.

ADS-B Retrofit Market Heats Up 1
Competition is driving ADS-B prices down, but installation complexities continue to dominate costs.
Watchdog: Inadequate FAA Oversight Leaves Airlines Hazardous Cargo Violations In Limbo

A government watchdog has found that some U.S. carriers did not face penalties after violating rules by carrying dangerous goods on passenger aircraft, even though the FAA did not verify that corrections had been made afterward, a quid pro quo for the protection. 

Podcast: How Do We Keep Pilots From Crashing Planes? 1
Aviation has become technically safer and safer. Is it now time to address the pilot as a safety concern?
Germanwings Crash: Can Single-Pilot Operations Combat An Uncooperative Cockpit? 5
NASA and industry are making progress on the human factors aspects of a long-distance relationship between two pilots flying an airliner – one in the air and one on the ground.
Pilot-Proofing Cockpits Takes Center Stage 50
Germanwings crash could spur a revival of technology solutions to scuttle deliberate pilot, passenger actions to down an aircraft.
German Investigators Cast Wider Net For Frozen AOA Sensors In Pamplona Dive Incident 9
Investigators studying the cause of an uncommanded pitch-down of a Lufthansa Airbus A321-200 near Pamplona, Spain, in November 2014, hope to discover the probability of similar events linked to frozen angle-of-attack sensors as the investigation continues.
U.K. NATS To Continue ‘Procedural Changes,’ Drawing Noise Complaints 
The issue emerged late last year when a 3.5-month test of new performance-based navigation (PBN) procedures for eastbound departures was completed.
DOT Cautions Airlines To Monitor Codeshare Partners On Conflict Zones 
The action is the result of the FAA’s “growing concerns about regional conflict zones around the world,” the DOT says.
Engineering Judgment Key In 757 Forced Landing In Antarctica 18
The Scout motto, “Be Prepared,” came in handy for the pilots of a Boeing 757 flying scientists from Christchurch to Pegasus Field in Antarctica when fog forced a landing at well below instrument minimums.
More Stakeholders Call For FAA Air Traffic Services Privatization 


A NextGen working group formed under the auspices of nonprofit think tank Eno Center for Transportation has joined those advocating for a recasting of the FAA’s responsibilities as part of a multi-year reauthorization bill being crafted by House lawmakers. 

FAA’s current four-year authorization expires on Sept. 30.

FAA Asks Airlines For ‘Committed-To-Stop Point’ For Landings 
The request, delivered in an Information for Operators (InFO) note published Mar. 13, calls for airline, air taxi and fractional operators as well as their training managers and pilots to develop the procedures using approved performance data for the aircraft and manufacturers procedures: “(The procedures) should be part of the approach briefing and adopted in initial and recurrent training, the operator’s SOPs, flight operations manual and crew resource management-training programs.”
Can Global Surveillance Be Crowd-Sourced? 3
With more than 6,200 receivers in place around the populated portions of the world, Flightradar24 will now turn to the oceans to give the nascent surveillance provider more visibility of long-haul routes.
Mar 27, 2015

U. S., Russian Astronauts Reach International Space Station for One Year Stay 6

"He will do great," predicted NASA astronaut Barry "Butch" Wilmore, who returned to Earth after 5 1/2 months on the ISS earlier this month. Wilmore watched Scott Kelly's lift off from NASA's Mission Control in Houston....More
Mar 26, 2015

Open Skies Over Benelux And Germany

Cold War kids like me still remember the Open Skies treaty, the 1992 agreement by members of NATO and the then Warsaw Pact to allow observation flights over their territory as a confidence-building measure....More
Mar 26, 2015

Pilot Report: Aviation Week Flies The Gripen (1999)

In 1999, Aviation Week's then Editor-in-Chief reported on the capabilities of the Saab Gripen. Read his pilot report....More
Mar 25, 2015

Kepler Achievements Recognized by National Air and Space Museum

"We are discovering all kinds of exotic planets, worlds that have oceans of molten rock, worlds that have not one but two stars rising in the East and setting in the West," said Natalie Batalha, Kepler mission scientist....More
Mar 24, 2015

NavWeek: Semper Why 3

As the U.S. Marine Corps continues to tack back to its expeditionary core and the U.S. remains on course for its Asia-Pacific rebalance, the question of the force’s relevance is again coming to the fore....More
Mar 21, 2015

SpaceX's Gwynne Shotwell Talks Raptor, Falcon 9, CRS-2, Satellite Internet and More 5

During a March 17 luncheon Shotwell touched on developments underway at the Hawthorne, California-based company....More
Mar 20, 2015

Germany To Boost Defense Spending

Germany's finance minister says the pacifist nation must shoulder more military commitments in the coming years....More
Mar 19, 2015

NASA's MAVEN Spacecraft Spots Martian Aurora, Unexplained Dust Cloud

"What's especially surprising about the aurora we saw is how deep in the atmosphere it occurs," said Arnaud Stiepen, a University of Colorado researcher....More

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