AOPA launches first member fly-in this Saturday

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), the world’s largest member-aviation organization, will host the first of seven fly-ins for 2014 at San Marcos Municipal Airport (KHYI) on Saturday, April 26.

Hundreds of aircraft are expected in San Marcos, and also at nearby New Braunfels Airport (KBAZ), the fly-in’s reliever airport with shuttle bus service to San Marcos.

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New book: Area 51 – Black Jets

Area 51, until recently, was the worst-kept U.S. government secret. We all knew it existed, but the mystery of the place remained, and still does.

Bill Yenne’s book, “Area 51 Black Jets – A History of the Aircraft Developed at Groom Lake, America’s Secret Aviation Base,” does much to unveil the mystery.

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Powering Imagination teams with Embry-Riddle to create electric flight program

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and Powering Imagination have entered into an agreement to create an electric flight program focused on reducing aircraft emissions and noise through development of electric propulsion systems.

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German government funds research to increase GA cabin safety

The German Ministry of Economic Affairs has granted funding for a research project that aims at developing a modular “SafetyBox” cabin safety system for light aircraft.

The new system will provide a safety cage around the occupants of an aircraft, supported by crash-optimized ergonomic designs and enhanced fire protection concepts.

The concept goes significantly beyond current aircraft designs, where the certification requirements ask for consideration of certain crash accelerations to the seat and restraint system, regardless of the capability and level of energy absorption of the surrounding fuselage cell.

With the new approach in this research program, the SafetyBox project team is optimizing the interaction of all the available elements in the early design phase of an aircraft. This will lead to a system of multiple modular elements that can be tailored to multiple applications in various aircraft designs.

The SafetyBox project team has selected Flight Design’s new C4 (pictured) as the first aircraft for the application of the system. Development times of the SafetyBox system match naturally with the development times of the C4 project, which makes this a natural initial project, according to company officials.

The full development will culminate in full scale crash testing of a completed aircraft under controlled conditions, planned for Summer 2015, to validate the suitability of the new system.

The application is not limited to Flight Design products. The system is designed as a modular system and will be offered to other aircraft manufacturers on the market.

The funding has been granted by the German Ministry of Economic Affairs. The application activity was launched by NorLiN Northern Lightweight Design Network of Hamburg, and involves development partners Autoflug GmbH, Flight Design GmbH, Silence Aircraft GmbH, Titan Präcis Metallurgie GmbH, HAW Hamburg – Department Fahrzeugtechnik und Flugzeugbau together with iDS Hamburg, and Faserinstitut e.V (FIBRE). The project is coordinated by Faserinstitut Bremen e.V. (FIBRE).

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First-ever California Pilot Safety Tour takes off is touring Central and Northern California in the next week providing free FAA Wings Safety Classes and safety information from Camarillo to Eureka.

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Cessna celebrates 100th Grand Caravan EX delivery

Cessna is celebrating the milestone delivery of the 100th Cessna Grand Caravan EX.

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Take Flight 5K at GMU

The annual Take Flight 5K will take to the runway at the Greenville Downtown Airport (GMU) in South Carolina on May 24.

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Continental exports flight training model to Europe

After a year and half of testing its dual site flight training approach, Zulu Flight Training is exporting its model to Europe.

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Poor approach for Piper

Aircraft: Piper Super Cub. Injuries: None. Location: Eaton, N.Y. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot was attempting to land on a grass runway.

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Fatigue: The pilot’s common cold

Returning from a short tropical vacation, I barely napped on the transatlantic red-eye. It was the night before my third airplane instructional flight. During the ground lesson, I thought I was hiding my jetlag pretty well from my instructor. It turns out he saw through my ruse and blindsided me with one of his own.

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