Debates must continue to find solutions to aviation’s upcoming technical challenges

Posted on March 15th, 2010 by

I recently received a letter, “Is global warming debate over?”, from Peter Mortensen criticizing one of my previous columns. I appreciated his letter and he made several valid points. Letters, even critical ones, ensure that we stay centered and help... Continue Reading →

What happened to auto gas at the airport?

Posted on February 10th, 2010 by

When auto gas was first approved via STC for certain aircraft, there was a lot of support and many airports started to sell auto gas. This was a good deal for many Rotax-powered aircraft, as well as STC’d certified aircraft.... Continue Reading →

The demise of 100LL is no surprise

Posted on January 18th, 2010 by

At the recent AOPA Aviation Summit, several industry leaders made the startling comment that lead in avgas is going away. Well, duh, what do you think I have been saying for the last 20 years? The comments fall into three... Continue Reading →

Global warming debate stifles progress

Posted on December 10th, 2009 by

I’ve received a lot of mail on my recent column on the effects of carbon dioxide on global warming (How are planes affecting the environment?). The replies were both pro and con on global warming and the greenhouse gas thing.... Continue Reading →

Jet A and diesel engines

Posted on November 1st, 2009 by

In a previous column I talked about going to a recent ASTM meeting and the progress being made on unleaded avgas. At this same meeting, there also was a lot of discussions on the qualification of diesel cycle aircraft engines... Continue Reading →

The fuel of the future

Posted on September 21st, 2009 by

As all pilots know, you go to Oshkosh to find out what is new in aviation. But if you want to know what’s new in aviation fuels, you go to an ASTM meeting. ASTM is the organization that is in... Continue Reading →

Oil temperature vs. oil viscosity

Posted on September 14th, 2009 by

Reader David Bennett recently wrote in, asking about oil temperature vs. oil grade. “When oil is rated for a certain temperature range, is that start-up temperature range or the range for most of the intended trip? My Super Cub handbook... Continue Reading →

How are planes affecting the environment?

Posted on September 14th, 2009 by

Lately, I’ve received a lot of e-mails from readers asking about the environment and the effect of internal combustion engine exhaust on our climate. One factor is the effect of CO2 on the environment. My understanding is that CO2 is... Continue Reading →

Getting the lead out

Posted on June 10th, 2009 by

I received an e-mail from a gentleman who is a “small investor” in Swift Fuels, a group associated with Purdue University working to produce an unleaded, high-octane aviation fuel that can be made from almost any sugar-containing plant matter. He... Continue Reading →

What oil should you use?

Posted on March 2nd, 2009 by

Many pilots want to know what oil to use and where to get it. To answer these questions accurately, I sent a questionnaire to the four main oil companies that supply lubricants to the general aviation industry. I received nice... Continue Reading →