Archive for August, 2015

High School Program Delivers Helicopter Flight Training and S.T.E.M. Education

Monday, August 31st, 2015

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Prescott, AZ. August 31, 2015 – For the third year-in-a-row, Guidance Aviation provided helicopter pilot ground school and introductory helicopter flights for Tri-City Prep High Schoolers. This year’s class ran August 10th – 27th.  The high school students were taught numerous aviation topics including:

  • Helicopter Operations
  • Fundamentals of aerodynamics
  • Instruments and Flight Controls
  • Elements of weather and how they pertain to flight
  • Determining protocols for cross-country flight
  • Physiological and psychological factors affecting human safety
  • Identifying extreme hazards in helicopter flight
  • Using a Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) and Airport Facility Directory (AFD)

The course prepares the students for a portion of the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Practical Knowledge Test, necessary to become a certificated helicopter pilot.

The future aviators also had the opportunity to utilize the Guidance Aviation flight simulation lab and fly the X-Copter helicopter simulator, an FAA approved, state-of-the-art helicopter flight training device used to prepare flight students for their first helicopter flights.  X-Copter’s manufacturing facility and corporate offices are also located at the Prescott Municipal Airport (KPRC), adjacent Guidance Aviation.

“Guidance Aviation has been a great partner for Tri-City Prep and genuinely cares for the students’ experiences. The program allows for our students to learn about unique careers in aviation while acquiring education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (S.T.E.M),” states Principal Milliken, TriCity Prep.

“Guidance Aviation is delighted to offer our helicopter pilot ground school for the third time at Tri-City Prep High School.  Motivating students and getting them interested in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math needs to be done more often,” remarked John “JJ” Johnson, Director of Academics, Guidance Aviation.

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FAA Dedicates Runway Pavement Testing Facility

Thursday, August 27th, 2015

FAA Press Release:

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) today dedicated its new National Airport Pavement & Materials Research Center at the William J. Hughes Technical Center at Egg Harbor Township, N.J.

The research center is a unique facility that allows FAA engineers to use a custom-designed vehicle simulator to test asphalt and other pavement materials at very high tire pressures and temperatures. Airport pavement temperatures can reach 140 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit as far north as New York City. Tire pressure ranges from 220 to 250 pounds per square inch on new generation aircraft like the Boeing 787 and Airbus 350. The vehicle simulator has an automated heating system that allows engineers to replicate and analyze the damage that heavy commercial jets can cause to the top asphalt layer when runways are hot. The vehicle was designed to simulate the behavior and weight of aircraft tires, and can show how repetitive aircraft operations affect pavement.

FAA engineers will move the Heavy Vehicle Simulator-Airfields (HVS-A) by remote control between four outdoor pavement test strips and two strips inside a new building, to allow for testing in a controlled environment. FAA engineers recently used the HVS-A to test the performance of airfield paint markings. The HVS-A is 130 feet long, 16 feet wide, 14 feet tall and weighs 240,000 pounds.

The new center will enable the FAA to research environmentally-friendly airport pavement materials such as warm-mix and recycled asphalt pavements.  The FAA’s goal is to expand the use of “greener” materials, and pavement materials that can be modified to enhance pavement durability, workability and strength. This will help airport operators save money by lowering the costs of initial construction, maintenance, and repairs, and will provide a longer pavement life.

The FAA has not recommended the use of environmentally-friendly airport pavement materials yet because research on the effects of aircraft tire pressure and heavy gear loads on green airport pavement materials has been limited.

Construction of the test facility began in August 2013 and was completed in May 2015 at a total cost of $3.8 million. The FAA accepted delivery of the $4.2 million HVS-A on November 1, 2013.

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Next Generation of Airbus Airliner A350-1000’s Wings in Production

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015

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August 18, 2015 Press Release from Airbus:

First A350-1000 wing goes into production

The wings for the first Airbus A350-1000 have begun the process of assembly at Broughton, North Wales.

The A350-1000 wing has the same span of the A350-900 that is already in service, but 90% of the parts have been modified and the trailing edge has been extended to resize the wing for the additional payload and range.

At 32 metres long by six metres wide, the A350 XWB wing is the largest single part made from carbon fibre composite material in use in civil aviation today. They are designed and developed at Airbus’ facility in Filton, near Bristol, where a number of other systems are designed and tested including fuel systems and landing gear.

 The high-performance wings of the A350 XWB make the aircraft faster, more efficient and quieter. The wing design includes several streamlined features. Among these are droop-nose leading edge devices and new adaptive dropped-hinge flaps, which increase the jetliner’s efficiency at low speeds.
 To improve efficiency at higher speeds, the A350 XWB can deflect its wing flaps differentially, optimising the wing profile and providing better load control.

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FAA: Wildfires and Drones Don’t Mix

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

If You Fly We Can't

WASHINGTON – Responding to recent incidents in which unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), also known as “drones,” interfered with manned aircraft involved in wildland firefighting operations, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is supporting the U.S. Department of the Interior and U.S. Forest Service in their simple message to drone operators: If you fly; we can’t.

“Flying a drone near aerial firefighting aircraft doesn’t just pose a hazard to the pilots,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “When aircraft are grounded because an unmanned aircraft is in the vicinity, lives are put at greater risk.”

Often a temporary flight restriction (TFR) is put in place around wildfires to protect firefighting aircraft.  No one other than the agencies involved in the firefighting effort can fly any manned or unmanned aircraft in such a TFR. Anyone who violates a TFR and endangers the safety of manned aircraft could be subject to civil and/or criminal penalties. Even if there is no TFR, operating a UAS could still pose a hazard to firefighting aircraft and would violate Federal Aviation Regulations.

“The FAA’s top priority is safety.  If you endanger manned aircraft or people on the ground with an unmanned aircraft, you could be liable for a fine ranging from $1,000 to a maximum of $25,000,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta. “Know the rules before you fly.  If you don’t, serious penalties could be coming your way for jeopardizing these important missions.”

Since so many people operate unmanned aircraft with little or no aviation experience, the FAA is promoting voluntary compliance and working to educate UAS operators about how they can operate safely under current regulations and laws. The agency has partnered with industry and the modeling community in a public outreach campaign called “Know Before You Fly.”

The campaign recently reminded UAS users to respect wildfire operations.  The National Interagency Fire Center also posted a video warning for users to, “Be Smart. Be Safe. Stay Away.”

Additionally, the FAA provided guidance to law enforcement agencies because they are often in the best position to deter, detect, immediately investigate, and, as appropriate, pursue enforcement actions to stop unauthorized or unsafe unmanned aircraft operations.

So remember this simple message around wildfires: If you fly, they can’t. Keep your drone on the ground and let firefighters and aircraft do their jobs. And, if you see someone flying a drone near a wildfire, report it immediately to local law enforcement and the nearest FAA Flight Standards District Office with as much information as possible. You can find the closest FAA office at:http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/field_offices/fsdo/.

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