House Science Chair Slams Asteroid Mission 

ASTEROID ALTERNATIVES: The chairman of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology is criticizing the Obama administration for continuing to “push” its proposed Asteroid Retrieval Mission, “without any connection to a larger exploration road map and absent support from the scientific community or NASA’s own advisory bodies.” Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) points instead to a “promising” proposal for a flyby mission to Mars and Venus in 2021 that his committee recently heard testimony on.

Lawmakers Urge Obama To Continue Deep-space Human Exploration 

A bipartisan group of 30 House lawmakers is urging President Barack Obama to “chart and clearly state a vision and timeline for the nation in deep-space exploration,” based on the heavy-lift Space Launch System and Orion crew capsule spelled out in authorization and funding legislation for NASA.

Routine Data Analysis Helped Inmarsat Pinpoint MH370’s Path

Inmarsat leveraged a “groundbreaking but traditional mathematics-based process” to analyze data from other flights that use its satellite network and establish a pattern that helped investigators nail down Malaysia Airlines Flight 370’s (MH370) final flight path as traveling south over the Indian Ocean, an Inmarsat executive explains.

Letter Urges Obama To Continue Deep-space Human Exploration 
President Barack Obama is being urged to “chart and clearly state a vision and timeline for the nation in deep-space exploration” by a bipartisan group of 30 House lawmakers.

BRIAN ANDREWS has joined Duncan Aviation’s airframe service sales team, focusing on providing technical sales support for Embraer clients. He joined Duncan Aviation’s Battle Creek, Mich., facility in 1998 as an airframe technician and in 2007 became a project manager, working with customers and service areas to ensure aircraft projects remained on time and on budget.

Dassault Falcon Unveils Revamped Regional M&O Seminars Program 

Dassault Falcon rolled out a revamped Regional Maintenance & Operations (M&O) Seminars program that will encompass nine cities on three continents. The seminar series has grown over the years as the Falcon fleet has surpassed the 2,000 aircraft mark with more than 1,200 operators. The format was expanded to a two-day event that will provide access to Dassault specialists, engineering teams, pilots, authorized service center representatives and suppliers. The seminars will cover both operational and technical issues. The series begins in Paris April 1-2.

Business, GA Aircraft Avionics Sales Top $2.4 Billion In 2013, AEA Says 

The market for business and general aviation avionics grew by single digits in 2013, with sales topping $2.4 billion, according to the Aircraft Electronics Association’s (AEA) year-end avionics market report. Sales for the year reached $2.429 billion, compared with $2.229 billion in 2012. In addition to a slight improvement in the market, the 9% increase reflects more companies participating in the AEA survey, which was first reported for 2012. Comparing the same participating companies, sales grew 6.9% from 2012 to 2013.


AIRBUS HELICOPTERS Model AS332C, AS332L, AS332L1, AS332L2, EC225LP, and SA330J helicopters [Docket No. FAA-2013-0872; Directorate Identifier 2013-SW-012-AD; Amendment 39-17784; AD 2014-05-11] – requires inspecting the turnbuckles for corrosion or a crack, and depending on the results, either replacing the turnbuckle or treating the turnbuckle for corrosion. This AD was prompted by a report that a turnbuckle had failed because of corrosion.


KEITH BENNETT has rejoined PAS Technologies as director of business development. Based in Kansas City, Mo., Bennett will steer business development strategies in the commercial aerospace and oil and gas segments. He first joined PAS Technologies in 1995, holding sales and operational management positions. He later served with Firth Rixson and most recently oversaw business development for OEM aviation and energy markets for Southwest United Industries. He began his career in 1987 as a senior design engineer for Pratt & Whitney.


BRIAN MOORE was promoted to assistant manager of FlightSafety International’s Cessna learning center in Wichita. Moore has 24 years of experience with FlightSafety, joining the company in 1990 as an instructor at the Hawker Beechcraft Learning Center. He has since held positions of increasing responsibility and most recently was FlightSafety’s relationship manager with Beechcraft.

Aircell Develops New Business Aircraft Inflight Communications System 

Aircell has developed a new inflight communications system for business aircraft that combines voice, narrowband data and cockpit data link services into a single unit. The ST 4300, which provides global coverage, is available with one, two or three Iridium voice/narrowband data channels, plus one dedicated Iridium data channel. It enables business aircraft to tailor the cabin and flight deck communications to their specific needs. Aircell expects the ST 4300 will be eligible for Future Air Navigation System (FANS) certification. Shipments are slated to begin in June.

Satcom Direct Router Gets OKs For Global 5000, XRS Aircraft 

Satcom Direct received European Aviation Safety Agency approval, along with FAA and Transport Canada validation for its Satcom Direct Router (SDR) aboard Global 5000 and Global XRS aircraft. The SDR is part of a package that upgrades the Rockwell Collins SAT-6100/-2100 single-channel Satcom Swift64 to single channel Swift Broadband with the Satcom Direct SDR Wi-Fi Router. The SDR is Satcom Direct’s first certified hardware and enables multiple systems to operate on aircraft without additional wireless access points. The company is shipping the units to dealers in the U.S.


EUROCOPTER DEUTSCHLAND Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135T1, EC135T2, and EC135T2+ helicopters [Docket No. FAA-2013-0554; Directorate Identifier 2012-SW-009-AD; Amendment 39-17774; AD 2014-05-01] – requires analyzing the main gearbox (MGB) oil for indications of metal chips or pieces, reviewing the MGB log or equivalent record, and inspecting certain teeth in the MGB after two chip indications. This AD was prompted by a partial tooth rupture found in an MGB that was returned to the manufacturer for repairs.


AIRBUS HELICOPTERS Model AS332C, AS332L, AS332L1, AS332L2, and SA330J helicopters [Docket No. FAA-2013-0826; Directorate Identifier 2011-SW-046-AD; Amendment 39-17788; AD 2014-05-15] – prohibits use of the hydraulic hoist in helicopters equipped with certain parts and configurations until a hoist beam lower fitting protector is installed. This AD was prompted by a report that the hoist cable jammed during a rescue at sea.

Apr 25, 2015

Saturday's Progress 57 Space Station Departure Paves the Way for new Russian Re-supply Mission

Progress 59 is scheduled to lift off from Baikonur on Tuesday at 3:09 a.m., EDT, initiating a four orbit, six hour sprint to the International Space Station with three tons of supplies...More
Apr 24, 2015

Airbus A380 Makes First Flight (2005) 1

The Airbus A380 made its first flight on April 27, 2005. The story since has been full of ups and downs. See our original coverage from 2005....More
Apr 23, 2015

Airbus, Boeing Delivering Aircraft At The Last Minute? 1

An analysis of Airbus' and Boeing's delivery data from Aviation Week Intelligence Network's Fleet database reveals that both Airbus and Boeing tend to deliver a majority of their aircraft during the second half of each month....More
Apr 21, 2015

Astronaut Scott Kelly Paces Start to ISS Marathon Mission, Chance to Sip Espresso

"We definitely look forward to the espresso machine," astronaut Scott Kelly, NASA's ISS marathoner, told Russia Today. "I know a lot of people are interested in it."...More
Apr 15, 2015

Briny Water May Challenge Future Mars Spacecraft Design

"These finding have implications for planetary protection policies for future landed spacecraft," according to the Nature Geoscience report. "Cl-bearing brines are very corrosive and this may have implications on spacecraft design and surface operations."...More

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