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CONGRATULATIONS TO GRANT BOWMAN OUR 2021 RAY SCHOLARSHIP AWARD WINNER AS HE
PASSED HIS CHECKRIDE ON NOV 17, 2021
The date is approaching and we’re making preparations. Don’t miss out on what we hope is our last 'You-Tube' meeting.
EAA is bringing back its Homebuilders Week series of online webinars in January 2022, following the big success of the inaugural series earlier this year. The upcoming series is scheduled for January 24-28, 2022, which encompasses the 69th anniversary of EAA’s founding on January 26, 1953. (Note the times listed are all in CST)
A selection of EAA-branded merchandise is now available through an EAA storefront via Amazon.com, bringing The Spirit of Aviation to more people via the worldwide online retailer.
The storefront at Amazon.com/EAA features some of EAA’s most popular items, from books and calendars to caps and aviation-themed metal signs. A selection of EAA and Flight Outfitters co-branded merchandise is also available through the Amazon site.
“Fascination with the world of flight stretches worldwide, so creating this outlet through Amazon allows EAA to reach aviation enthusiasts anywhere,” said Scott Powers, EAA’s director of retail operations. “Working with Amazon is an outstanding complement to the full line merchandise available through the EAA website store and in-person right here in Oshkosh.”
For shoppers who have active Amazon Prime accounts, they will be able to receive two-day free shipping as EAA merchandise will be shipped direct from Amazon’s distribution centers. In addition, shoppers using the Amazon Smile program can direct Amazon to donate 0.5 percent of the purchase price to the EAA Aviation Foundation to support EAA’s programs that grow participation in aviation. Amazon users can activate the Smile program on their accounts and designate the EAA Aviation Foundation as their favorite charity.
UPDATED JAN 18, 2022
(From Flying Magazine)
AT&T on Tuesday said it would delay rolling out 5G service on newly available frequencies, a day after U.S. airlines warned of widespread disruptions in air travel. “At our sole discretion, we have voluntarily agreed to temporarily defer turning on a limited number of towers around certain airport runways as we continue to work with the aviation industry and the FAA to provide further information about our 5G deployment, since they have not utilized the two years they’ve had to responsibly plan for this deployment,” AT&T said in a statement.
“We are frustrated by the FAA’s inability to do what nearly 40 countries have done, which is to safely deploy 5G technology without disrupting aviation services, and we urge it do so in a timely manner. We are launching our advanced 5G services everywhere else as planned with the temporary exception of this limited number of towers. ”AT&T along with another 5G carrier, Verizon Communications, had said they would create buffer zones at 50 airports in 46 markets, where they would turn off transmitters and make other adjustments.
On Monday, U.S. airlines warned the White House that possible interference with radio altimeters could cause delays and cancellations across the passenger and shipping sectors. “It’s the transmission towers for 5G, not the use of 5G in cellphones, that is the issue. It is important to make that distinction. Les Abend, FLYING contributing editor in a letter to the Biden administration obtained by FLYING, airline CEOs warned that if the rollout is allowed to move forward, “the nation’s commerce will grind to a halt. … Unless major hubs are cleared to fly, the vast majority of the traveling and shipping public will essentially be grounded.”
The FCC has authorized AT&T and Verizon to start using the frequencies Wednesday. “This means that on a day like [Saturday], more than 1,100 flights and 100,000 passengers would be subjected to cancellations, diversions or delays,” the letter says. The letter requests that “5G be implemented everywhere in the country except within the approximate two miles of airport runways at affected airports as defined by the FAA. ”Executives signing the letter—organized by industry group Airlines for America—represented passenger carriers Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL), American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL), United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL), Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV), Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK), JetBlue Airways (NASDAQ:JBLU), and Hawaiian Airlines. Cargo airlines included Atlas Air Worldwide (NASDAQ:AAWW), FedEx Express (NYSE:FDX), and UPS Airlines (NYSE:UPS). It was sent to top officials at the FAA, Federal Communications Commission, Department of Transportation, and the National Economic Council. Phone carriers have long pointed out that 5G is already in use in France, and American air carriers fly there on a daily basis with no issues.
Les Abend, FLYING contributing editor and retired Boeing 777 captain, has been watching the 5G issue unfold for years, noting the technology from 1G to 5G has taken the better part of two decades to evolve.While it may seem that the airlines only recently became aware of the issue and raised the alarm, Abend notes that so many technological things—and the potential impact on industries beyond cellular technology—were not considered during its development. “It’s the transmission towers for 5G, not the use of 5G in cellphones, that is the issue,” Abend says. “It is important to make that distinction.”
The aviation industry warns that 5G transmission will disrupt the signals necessary for the proper operation of several systems on transport category aircraft—and many business jets as well—and one of the most important is the radio altimeter that gives the pilot critical information about the aircraft’s height above terrain. Radio altimeter information systems issue verbal warnings and cautions on takeoff and landing, letting the pilot know how close they are to the ground below the airplane. These callouts are critical for instrument approaches, especially during periods of extremely low visibility—what are known as CAT II and CAT III approaches. “The radio altimeter provides critical information on these approaches. Certain parameters, such as altitude, need to be correct before the approach can continue,” Abend says. For example, an approach might call for the jet to level off at a certain altitude and stay there until they reach the final approach fix before it can continue the descent. “If the pilot loses the ability to determine the aircraft’s height above ground, the pilot also won’t know when to go around,” Abend explains, adding that if the radio altimeter is unreliable, it could result in a canceled flight. “If it is part of the aircraft’s minimum equipment list, it becomes a no-go situation.” If the weather descends below certain minimums and a CAT II or CAT III approach is required, says Abend, the flight may be canceled.
Abend is skeptical of the wireless providers’ assertions that 5G is already in use in Europe where U.S. airlines fly every day without issue.
“I would like to know where those 5G towers are in relation to Paris and Heathrow,” he says. The airport buffer zones promised by Verizon and AT&T were expected to be in place for the next six months.
On Sunday, the FAA announced it has cleared about 45 percent of the U.S. commercial aircraft fleet to perform low-visibility landings at many of the airports but, “even with these new approvals, flights at some airports may still be affected,” the agency said. United Airlines issued a statement Monday saying deployment will result “in the suspension of cargo flights…causing a negative ripple-effect on an already fragile supply chain.
The controversy over the 5G deployment came to a head earlier this month, when— after pressure from the U.S. aviation industry—AT&T and Verizon agreed to delay the release by two weeks, until Wednesday. 5G networks use a set of radio waves called the C-band spectrum. The purpose of 5G is to provide for faster internet operations; however, the FAA and other members of the aviation industry have expressed concern that 5G may interfere with aircraft radio altimeters during approach to certain airports, and therefore have a negative impact on flight safety. The FAA has long been warning about potential safety repercussions from the rollout, arguing that the restrictions could potentially disrupt air travel and cargo shipments around the world, especially when combined with airline staffing issues resulting from COVID-19 and weather delays.
UPDATE as of JAN 9, 2022
The FAA has issued its list of 50 airports that will be protected (Daytona and Sanford aren't on the list) from Verizon and AT&T’s 5G signals for six months and the criteria it used suggests the list would have been a lot longer if the FAA had its way. The list was released Friday, a few days after the telecoms agreed to push back their major rollout of 5G cell service from Jan. 5 to Jan.19 and to put buffer zones around a maximum of 50 airports picked by the FAA until next July 19.
UPDATE as of JAN 4, 2022
The main event between corporate heavyweights—the airline and telecom industries— will have to hold off for another two weeks. Both sides today confirmed the agreement to delay launching the latter’s 5G network, in deference to the former’s concerns over mass flight cancellations due to safety concerns that the powerful broadband signals were close enough on the frequency range that they could corrupt airliners’ radar altimeters. Those altimeters are critical to extreme low-visibility approaches, including autoland procedures.
In a prepared statement, Rich Young, Verizon spokesperson, said, “We’ve agreed to a two-week delay which promises the certainty of bringing this nation our game-changing 5G network in January delivered over America’s best and most reliable network,” echoed by AT&T, which said its network would implement additional protective measures at vulnerable airports over the next six months.
Officials from the airline industry cited the resemblance of their mitigation recommendations to those already implemented in France. That is, limiting or cutting power involving 5G service providers in sensitive areas.
With the telecom giants refusing on Monday to consider the delay, trade group Airlines for America (A4A) had prepared a lawsuit to block the launch of the broadband services. That lawsuit is now shelved, at least temporarily. But A4A said they are keeping their hands close to that shelf, should the telecom giants reevaluate. The infrastructure for their 5G networks has cost AT&T and Verizon in excess of $80 billion to date.
UPDATE as of JAN 1, 2022
Verizon and AT&T say they’ll turn down the power of 5G broadband signals near major airports of their choosing for six months but otherwise the rollout of the much-anticipated system will go ahead as planned on Jan. 5. In a scathing letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and FAA Administrator Steve Dickson released by The Wall Street Journal on Sunday, AT&T CEO John Stankey and Verizon’s Hans Vestberg chided the government officials for what they characterized as an eleventh-hour request to prevent widespread flight restrictions when they’ve had at least a year to prepare for 5G. To read the full AOPA article click this link:
The FAA effectively rejected assertions by the wireless industry and the Federal Communications Commission that 5G C-band transmitters can be activated in January as planned without putting aircraft at risk, pledging a cooperative approach to resolving safety concerns while setting the stage for weather delays and cancellations. The agency issued a pair of airworthiness directives (ADs) that take effect December 9 and are likely to limit a wide range of aircraft operations when the new 5G networks are activated, including scheduled passenger and cargo service, emergency response, and medical transportation.
The FAA issued two ADs December 7 that took effect December 9 (upon publication in the Federal Register), respectively applicable to transport category airplanes and all helicopters certified with radio altimeters installed. Also known as radar altimeters, these widely used devices provide pilots with the only direct measurement of distance above terrain, water, and obstacles.
The ADs require operators to update aircraft flight manuals to insert a limitation prohibiting all procedures that utilize radio altimeters, in conjunction with notams (a familiar acronym recently re-designated to signify “notice to air missions”) to be issued for expected interference in specific locations once the new 5G C-band transmitters power up in early January. In such cases, minimum visibility and other weather criteria will revert to limitations associated with barometric altitude measurement, a much less accurate method that is likely to significantly limit operations in poor weather.
The FAA expressed optimism that the issue can be resolved in a December 7 statement:
“The FAA believes the expansion of 5G and aviation will safely co-exist. Today, we took an important step toward that goal by issuing two airworthiness directives to provide a framework and to gather more information to avoid potential effects on aviation safety equipment. The FAA is working closely with the Federal Communications Commission and wireless companies, and has made progress toward safely implementing the 5G expansion. We are confident with ongoing collaboration we will reach this shared goal.”
The issue has been brewing for years, including throughout the FCC process that culminated in 2020 with the authorization to activate new 5G wireless transmitters operating on the C-band. Transmitters were originally scheduled to go online early this month in 46 of the most populated areas of the country. A broad-based coalition of aviation advocates (including AOPA) urged delay of that activation, given documented evidence that the C-band cellular traffic could interfere with radio altimeters operating on nearby frequencies. AOPA, the National Business Aviation Association, Helicopter Association International, and other general aviation organizations, as well as companies and groups representing the air transport sector, issued a statement December 8 in response to the new ADs that first thanked the FAA for acting to protect safety, and then warned that significant air travel disruption is likely absent mitigations beyond what the wireless industry recently proposed, such as limiting the power output of certain transmitters.
“While appreciated, the mitigations proposed by AT&T and Verizon are inadequate and far too narrow to ensure the safety and economic vitality of the aviation industry and the millions of people traveling by air each year,” the aerospace coalition wrote in the joint statement, noting that the group has also proposed an alternative for the FCC to consider, “which builds on the voluntary telecom proposal and provides additional safeguards in, around, and on the approach to airports and heliports. The proposal aims to minimize the impact on both the telecom operations and our national aviation system.”
While the wireless industry has long argued that 5G C-band does not risk interference with radio altimeters, the FAA, in the ADs, cited findings to the contrary by an RTCA 5G Task Force that conducted a risk assessment and issued a report in 2020, including the results of interference tests with several common radar altimeter models. The FAA noted in the related ADs that the task force report concluded that there remains “‘a major risk that 5G telecommunications systems in the 3.7-3.98 GHz band will cause harmful interference to radar altimeters on all types of civil aircraft—including commercial transport airplanes; business, regional, and general aviation airplanes; and both transport and general aviation helicopters.’”
The FAA further noted that its own assessment affirmed the RTCA findings:
“The FAA risk assessment included consideration of the RTCA report, public comments to the RTCA report, and analyses from radio altimeter manufacturers and aircraft manufacturers in support of the safety risk determination. The analyses FAA considered were consistent with RTCA’s conclusions pertaining to radio altimeter interference from C-Band emissions. The FAA determined that, at this time, no information has been presented that shows radio altimeters are not susceptible to interference caused by C-Band emissions permitted in the United States,” the agency stated in the ADs.
The FAA also addressed the wireless industry's claim that 5G C-band networks have not caused such interference in other countries: “In some countries, temporary technical, regulatory, and operational mitigations on C-Band systems have been implemented while aviation authorities complete their safety assessments. Under the FCC rules adopted in 2020, base stations in rural areas of the United States are permitted to emit at higher levels in comparison to other countries which may affect radio altimeter equipment accuracy and reliability.”
The Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) leads the coalition of aviation stakeholders formed to address the issue, and the coalition noted that its own risk mitigation proposal, submitted December 6, seeks to preserve safety while enabling the next generation of wireless connectivity without unnecessary delay:
“With the current launch date of January 5, and the ADs just being released, it is clear we need to get this balance right," the aerospace coalition said December 8. "We strongly urge for a further delay in 5G deployment for the data sharing and consultations necessary to create a win-win situation for both industries.”
The FCC expressed optimism that the issue can be resolved in a December 7 statement reported by Bloomberg:
“The FCC continues to make progress working with the FAA and private entities to advance the safe and swift deployment of 5G networks, as evidenced by the technical mitigations wireless carriers adopted last month. We look forward to updated guidance from the FAA in the coming weeks that reflects these developments.”
The proposal from the AIA-led aerospace coalition expands on the mitigations proposed by the wireless industry that the FCC referred to.
Meanwhile, with C-band base stations still on track to activate in January, the two ADs instruct operators to modify aircraft flight manuals at an estimated cost of $85 per aircraft, or $580,890 across the fleet of fixed-wing aircraft, and $155,380 for the rotorcraft fleet currently in service.
Notams will follow for specific locations as 5G C-band transmitters are activated advising operators when radar altimeters can no longer be trusted for use in various procedures, including off-airport landings in bad weather by emergency medical services helicopters.
“Potential impacts include: delayed and cancelled passenger flights; delayed air cargo shipments; significant schedule disruptions; and inability for first responders, military, and law enforcement to fly helicopter missions. We will have a full assessment of the impact of the ADs in the coming days,” the aviation coalition noted.
Members of the aviation coalition also worked to educate aviators, regulators, and the public about the details of an issue that has for several years prompted repeated warnings and pleas for appropriate mitigation. NBAA hosted an hourlong discussion on the topic online December 7, and AOPA has also worked, as a member of the aviation coalition, to encourage cooperative risk mitigation.
THANKS TO AOPA FOR THIS ARTICLE
A commercial small satellite launch vehicle developed by Astra will launch six small experimental CubeSats developed by NASA and U.S. universities. The payloads include the CubeSat Radio Interferometry Experiment, consisting of two small satellites, the BAMA 1 CubeSat, the Ionospheric Neutron Content Analyzer, QubeSat, and a mission called R5-S1.
A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket will launch the USSF 8 mission with the fifth and sixth satellites for the Space Force’s Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program, or GSSAP, designed to help the military track and observe objects in geosynchronous orbit. The rocket will fly in the 511 vehicle configuration with a five-meter fairing, one solid rocket booster and a single-engine Centaur upper stage.
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the second COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation, or CSG 2, radar surveillance satellite for ASI, the Italian space agency. The spacecraft was built by Thales Alenia Space.
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch with another batch of Starlink internet satellites from LC-39A
EAA has formed a team to explore ways of improving aviation safety by focusing on responses to the often-tragic 180-degree turn back to the runway following engine failure on takeoff.
This group, led by Charlie Precourt, EAA’s board vice chairman, and Sean Elliott, EAA’s vice president of advocacy and safety, also includes representatives from the flight instruction and flight test communities, academia, data analysis experts, and others.
A recent survey conducted by AOPA of pilots and aircraft owners across the country confirmed what we have been hearing from many members for several years: Older pilots who are just as safe, current, and proficient as any others continue to find their insurance policies unceremoniously dropped or canceled, or much more expensive—just for being a day older than 70.
"I always wonder how many people are flying aircraft with hardware and parts that are OLD. The FAA defines old as as over 35 years or 7500 hours Total time !!!!"
John Steidinger, Spruce Creek, FAA Master Pilot and Master Mechanic.
Are your wing attachment points serviceable?
Notice Number: NOTC2141
This is a Safety Advisory Notice from the Australian ATSB
On 18 August 2021, an amateur-built Stolp Acroduster II, departed Caboolture Airfield, Queensland, Australia for an aerobatic flight, with the pilot being the sole occupant. A short time later the aircraft sustained an in-flight break-up. The aircraft was destroyed, and the pilot was fatally injured. The center section of the upper wing was located away from the main aircraft wreckage. Technical examination of the cabane struts from the center section confirmed that there was fatigue cracking and eventual failure of the eye bolts that had held the upper wing in place.
The Australian ATSB Safety Advisory Notice can be viewed here:
The Australian ATSB Safety Advisory Notice can be viewed here:
This is a cautionary tale for us all. Whether you are the operator of a Stolp Acroduster, or you fly any other kind of aircraft, have a look at the hardware that holds important parts together. Check for deformation, corrosion, fretting, cracking, chafing, paint flaking, looseness, distortion, alignment, missing or loose locking mechanisms, damage, and security. If it makes you wonder, then ask maintenance about it.
The Orion spacecraft for NASA's Artemis I mission, fully assembled with its launch abort system, is lifted above the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket in High Bay 3 of the Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Oct. 20, 2021. The stacking of Orion on top of the SLS completes assembly for the Artemis I flight test.
EAA has reported that the FAA has published draft guidance to implement an optional task-based Phase I program for Experimental Amateur-Built (E-AB) aircraft. Under the program, once an aircraft completes a flight test plan that meets FAA standards, Phase I is complete. The standard 25- or 40-hour flight test period for Phase I will remain an option for all E-AB, and Experimental Light-Sport (E-LSA) continues to carry a 5-hour test period.
The program is part of an upcoming update to Advisory Circular (AC) 90-89B. Flight test programs do not need specific approval by the FAA, but the Circular lays out certain required flight test points and requires the use of test cards for data collection in flight. Users of the EAA Flight Test Manual should find it a straightforward way to complete the requirements of the task-based Phase I program, but anyone may draft a flight test plan that meets the FAA's outline, including kit manufacturers and other experts.
Task-based Phase I ensures that every hour spent in flight testing is meaningful and is contributing to both validating the airworthiness of the aircraft and gathering the data necessary to build a detailed operating manual. This will benefit the builder in ensuring full exploration of the aircraft's operating envelope, and it will benefit subsequent owners in having access to quality data on the aircraft. In exchange for this work, the aircraft will be released from Phase I when it is ready, not based on an arbitrary time requirement.
"This is the result of more than eight years of work by EAA and the FAA and we couldn't be happier that it is now nearing completion," said Tom Charpentier, EAA Government Relations Director. "This will be a true paradigm shift in E-AB flight testing."
This program comes on the heels of EAA's publication of its Flight Test Manual in 2018, which has sold thousands of copies to date. EAA is continuously working to improve it and create new materials and programming based upon the manual.
Task-based Phase I is yet another example of the EAA working collaboratively with the FAA to achieve a win-win solution that benefits the community and enhances safety. The groundwork for this change was laid by the EAA/FAA working group that created the Additional Pilot Program (AC 90-116), which allows another pilot into the cockpit to enhance safety during flight testing.
The Advisory Circular is in draft form and comments will be accepted through April 29. Please note that the relevant language on Task-Based Phase I is housed in Chapter 1, Section 1 of the draft. The rest of the document contains advisory information on flight testing and is not part of the task-based program requirements.
Chapter 288 started in the 1970s, and originally met at nearby Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. The chapter took regular trips to the Spruce Creek Fly-In, located in Port Orange, Florida, and soon moved their meeting location to Spruce Creek. Chapter 288 is unique, because of it's location. 288 is located at the intersection of young aviation enthusiasts from the University and experienced aviators along Florida's Space Coast.
Chapter 288 works to continue the spirit of general aviation in Daytona Beach area. We host several events throughout the year for our members which feature prominent aviators and aviation technology. Chapter 288 members also volunteer at aviation related functions throughout the community to teach people about general aviation. Volunteering at local airshows and hosting
Young Eagles events are some of the ways that EAA 288 members participate in the community. Chapter 288's members are also very involved with the EAA on a national level. The chapter has a good turnout at the EAA's annual fly-in "AirVenture" in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
The EAA works on a national level to help endure the "spirit of aviation." They work to get children who have an interest in becoming a pilot, air traffic controller, mechanic, etc. achieve their goals. EAA sponsors workshops for homebuilders teaching skills neccesary for them to build their own airplanes. Founded in 1953 by Paul Poberezney, the EAA has worked for over 60 years to keep general aviation alive and prospering into the future. They work today with other aviation organizations to ensure that aviation friendly laws are passed in Washington D.C., and to help ensure that general aviaiton will continue well into the future. To learn more about the Experimental Aircraft Association on a national level, and how to join, please visit their website at EAA.ORG