Way back in 1970, there were some air racing organizers who felt that the answer to the too-short Unlimited air races at Reno might be to have a longer race, so long that it would require pit stops. In Unlimited-class piston airplanes
. Thus was born the California 1000. [more inside]
posted by pjern
on May 12, 2014 -
on the blue. Raphael Pirker, a.k.a. "Trappy" was the first person ever to to fined by the FAA for the commercial operation of a drone. However, instead of paying up, Pirker decided to contest the ruling with a little pro bono legal help
. Last Thursday evening, the judge issued his ruling
. The judge dismissed the FAA's case
, agreeing with the defense that since the FAA never created any legally binding rules for small drones to begin with, they cannot now apply rules that would be used for a pilot flying a full size manned aircraft to drone operators.
For now, the ruling means that commercial operation of SUAS
in the United States is, basically
, legal. Within 24 hours of the ruling, the FAA appealed
the case to entire board of the NTSB.
SUAS experimenters who have been waiting in the wings are pleased with the ruling
posted by smoothvirus
on Mar 9, 2014 -
Raphael Pirker, a.k.a. Trappy, is a FPV
pilot who came to be well known after the video from his New York flight
went viral. While most of the media coverage of Trappy's NYC exploits was positive
, the incident prompted a heated debate
in the hobbyist community, and the authorities took a dim view
Shortly afterwards, Trappy was hired by a PR firm to do an aerial video
shoot over the University of Virginia. The FAA, having banned commercial use of UAVs
in 2007, took the unusual step of issuing a $10,000 fine
for the unauthorized flight.
Earlier this month Trappy's attorneys filed a response
(pdf) to the FAA's action which questions whether the FAA holds jurisdiction over "model aircraft" in the first place. According to Wired Magazine
, he court's decision could determine the future of model aviation and miniature UAVs in the US. Once again, the response from the hobbyist/entrepreneur community has been spirited
. [more inside]
posted by smoothvirus
on Oct 17, 2013 -
Don't fly during Ramadan.
Aditya Mukerjee describes his experience while attempting to clear the U.S. Transportation Security Administration's checks and board a JetBlue flight. After being cleared by the TSA, following two hours of questioning and checks, Mukerjee was prevented by JetBlue from boarding his intended flight. He was offered rebooking for the following day and, when he declined, given a refund.
This isn't the first time that the TSA and JetBlue have been called out for this type of action
posted by fireoyster
on Aug 22, 2013 -
Forgotten 1960s 'Thunderbirds' projects brought to life.
The "Multi-Unit Space Transport and Recovery Device" (MUSTARD), the "Jumping Jeep", and the "Intercity Vertical-Lift Aircraft". "British arms company BAE has recently been through its archives and publicised some of the projects dreamed up in the glory days of the 1960s, when designers' imaginations were allowed to run riot with little consideration of practicality or budget." From The Economist magazine,
which has period sketches of the designs.
posted by alasdair
on Jun 22, 2013 -
Oh hello, I'm Las Vegas high school student Manuja Gunaratne and I built this aircraft using trashbags and helium. Btw, I put a GPS tracker on this thing and had a digital camera takes pictures during the entire flight. Check out Project T.B.A.C
. [more inside]
posted by Foci for Analysis
on Sep 24, 2011 -
Watched by Vladimir Putin, the Sukhoi T-50
, Russia's answer to the Raptor stealth fighter, has made its maiden public appearance at the MAKS 2011 air show near Moscow, after first flying
in January 2010. Bearing a striking resemblance
to the F-22
, the Sukhoi T-50 has been developed in co-operation with India and is slated to become the backbone of Russia's airforce. While the F-22 first flew in 7 September 1997 and ceased production
with just 187 aircraft ordered, Sukhoi director Mikhail Pogosyan hopes to build 1,000 T-50s for Russia's airforce and export
. Despite its ageing engines, it is rumoured to have a range of a range of almost 3,500 miles, twice that of the F-22. What is believed to be China's 5th generation fighter, the J-20
, is also under development.
posted by joannemullen
on Aug 18, 2011 -
Boeing are currently testing the latest version of their venerable Jumbo Jet, the 747-8. Yesterday, in one of the last test flights prior to certification the new 747 flew for 17 hours, a distance of over 11,000 miles. The flight path can be seen here
. [more inside]
posted by jontyjago
on Aug 3, 2011 -
Austrian research company IAT21 has presented a new type of aircraft at the Paris Air Show which has the potential to become aviation's first disruptive technology since the jet engine. ... The key to the D-Dalus' extreme maneuverability is the facility to alter the angle of the blades (using servos) to vector the forces, meaning that the thrust can be delivered in your choice of 360 degrees around any of the three axes. Hence D-Dalus can launch vertically, hover perfectly still and move in any direction, and that's just the start of the story.
posted by Trurl
on Jun 23, 2011 -
Fresh on the heels of Lockheed Martin's delivery
of the first production F-35 to the USAF, you might be wondering how much it actually costs. It depends on who you ask.
Blackfive takes a crack at it
, prompting a rather snippy response
from Bill Sweetman over at Ares. Throw in additional commentary
and a rebuttal
, and head down the rabbit hole into the wonderful world of defense acquisition.
posted by kjars
on May 17, 2011 -
Two hours just to sort through the error messages.
What happened to that Airbus A380 (Qantas flight QF32) whose engine caught fire in mid-air between Singapore and Sydney in November 2010? One of the five
crewmembers on the flight deck recounts the story, which centres on airplane computer systems as much as on keeping tons of metal in the air. [more inside]
posted by joeclark
on Dec 12, 2010 -
Luftfahrtsieb: Das Luftfahrtarchiv
ist eine interessante Website, die handelt sich um die frühe Geschichte des Luftwesen in Deutschland und anderswo. Es botet Artikeln, die diskutieren die frühste Fliegversuche des Mensch
, berühmte Fliegstaten wie die erste Flüge über den Ärmelkanal
oder den Atlantik
usw., aber vielleicht interessanter sind jene, die sich mit anderer Fächer befassen. Es gibt zum Beispiel Geschichten der Bemühungen des Graf von Zeppelin, einen erfolgreichen Luftschiff in seiner schwimmenden Halle auf dem Bodensee zu bauen
und des Flugplatz in Johannisthal, wo findet deutsches Luftwesen seines Anfangrichtige
. Man kann auch lernen, wie Kunstflugmanöver zu erbingen sind
, oder die richtige Methode, sein Luftschiff zu starten oder landen. [more inside]
posted by Dim Siawns
on Nov 24, 2010 -
Air traffic in
much of northern Europe
halted – due to ash from a volcanic eruption under the Eyjafjallajokull glacier
in Iceland. The volcano under the glacier erupted for the first time in 200 years last month and whilst Iceland is renowned for its volcanic and geologic activity the sheer ferocity of the latest eruption (thought to be 20 times more powerful than the initial eruption on the 20th March) and prevailing wind conditions have culminated in the current traffic chaos
shows the current impact on the skies. Whilst the particles will disperse at high altitude and pose no threat to those on the ground, the volcanic ash
is very dangerous
to aircraft . Not only is there the problem of it clouding pilot vision but the ash can cause engine malfunction and damage the delicate airframe skin. One silver lining in all this is the anticipated glorious red sunset that should follow.
posted by numberstation
on Apr 15, 2010 -