Following the tragic incident at Mojave air and space port last week Hobbyspace has a link to one man's thoughts on what killed the three Scaled Composites employees.
July 2007 Archives
Photo credit: AP
NTSB investigators yesterday offered up a perfectly plausible explanation for why two very seasoned airline pilots on a perfectly dawning summer morning pulled their perfectly fit CRJ100 regional jet onto a tragically unfit runway (too short) and ploughed into trees and other obstacles before coming to rest a half mile from the airport, killing 49 of the 50 aboard...
Some people clearly have way too much time on their hands with this nifty website about an orbiting banana. For slightly more sensible stuff you can always find plenty of great links at Hobbyspace.com. And the ever so slightly right wing blog Transterrestrial Musings gets even more serious with stuff about ITAR. While the space politics blog gets out its crystal ball and peers into the future beyond the 2008 US presidential election.
Better late than never…
The US FAA today published a list of specials conditions that will be needed to certify the glass panel upgrade in the Symphony Aircraft Industries SA160 single-engine two-seater before it can grace the American skies.
Only problem is, Symphony went out of business on January 19th, in large part, because it had been told by the FAA a few months before, when the company applied for the certification, that the regulator didn’t have the resources to get started on the project right away…and in fact, that it wouldn’t even know which projects would get priority for a few more months, according to Symphony’s largest investor, who asked not to be identified.
Safety has again been brought to the forefront after yesterday's ill-fated TAM A320 crash in Sao Paolo.
The event is indeed deeply tragic; an Airbus A320 aircraft skidded off the runway onto a busy road,killing nearly 200 people,including some people on the ground as the aircraft spilled onto a petrol station.
Although explanations of the tragic event are still inconclusive, we have offered some of our own thoughts on the accident and found this video highlighting the kind of speeds reached when landing on Sao Paulo’s Congonhas Airport.
Some of our forum users have also offered their own opinions on this event, highlighting the importance of understanding and discussing possible failings to gain a sense of perspective,so in future the possibilities of such tragedies happening can be avoided.
Here we are again with another series of links to what's going on in the spaceflight world, beginning with a disturbing lack of knowledge about NASA's Space Shuttles by its own employees. Some NASA personnel seem to have forgotten that the Space Shuttle that is about to be launched is named after the British ship of exploration captained by James Cook. They gave the OK for an incorrectly spelt banner to be put up near the launch pad, less Go Endeavour, more Go Spellcheck.
Following hot on the heels of Friday’s special “points for trying” award from the static display at the Royal International Air Tattoo, the German army has again shown its ability to impress, this time by securing the inaugural “don’t try this at home” prize.
Regular air show goers will be well used to seeing transport crews sitting on the wings of their aircraft to get an uninterrupted view of the flying display, but as illustrated here, perhaps the rotors of a BO105 helicopter are a bit less accommodating than a Boeing C-17 or Lockheed Martin C-130!
By Craig Hoyle
Raytheon Systems’ well-documented woes during the development phase of the UK’s airborne stand-off radar programme – which have included the inadvertent destruction of the five-aircraft fleet’s first dual-mode surveillance radar and difficulties in installing radomes on recent examples – appear to have reached a new low point.
As this image of the UK’s first in-service aircraft at the Royal International Air Tattoo illustrates, the prime contractor and the Royal Air Force have found a potentially bargain basement way of protecting the engines on the modified Bombardier Global Express business jet while it is on the ground. But I guess as the saying goes, if the cap fits…
It is with great pleasure that I can announce the winner of Flight’s prestigious “points for trying” award from the Friday warm-up day for this year’s Royal International Air Tattoo goes to the crew of the German army Sikorsky CH-53K transport helicopter.
Aircrews have never been particularly shy around females, but special mention must be made of this subtle attempt to attract the right sort of visitor to their aircraft; notice the “Ladies only” message chalked above the side door. Perhaps if their luck doesn’t improve over the weekend they could always fall back on the factually accurate rotary boast: “I’m a [Super] Stallion”!
Regular visitors to the massively popular Royal International Air Tattoo are more than used to seeing exotic colour schemes on some of the aircraft on display each year, and this year’s event at RAF Fairford in southern England will not disappoint, with all manner of unusual decals on show.
The UK Royal Air Force was reportedly recently issued with new guidelines on the political correctness – or otherwise – of some forms of nose art, which usually require an illustration of a scantily-clad lady. But nobody seems to have told the Greek air force about this, as the service has brought one of its Lockheed Martin C-130B tactical transports to the UK sporting a tail decoration that could cause more than a few blushes in the Gloucestershire countryside this weekend.
“Expanding the legendary feats of Hercules it may be,” but the classically tasteful illustration could also prompt a few early – and uncomfortable – questions about the birds and the bees from some of the show’s younger visitors! Fig leaf, anyone?
By Craig Hoyle at RIAT 2007
Whirling round the internet, as I do, seeking out what's going on I thought I'd give another round up of some of the stuff you could find this week.
While quick disconnect couplings might not seem that fun NASA is seeking them for its Constellation’s programme’s lunar extra-vehicular manned unit portable life support system.
For that programme Alliant Techsystems has been awarded $62.5 million for the Orion crew exploration vehicle’s launch abort motor by the new manned spacecraft’s launch abort system developer Orbital Sciences.
If you want some interesting speculation on Orion and the possible requirements for it to have a titanium enclosed cabin then Chair Force Engineer is a good place to go.
Something more down to Earth is the US space agency’s Glenn Research Center request for new avionics for its Beechcraft T-34 Mentor and you can see pictures of the aircraft’s interiors here.
Meanwhile over at Kennedy Space Center Space Shuttle Endeavour has been moved to its launch pad for its scheduled 7 August start to its STS-118 mission to the International Space Station (ISS).
Another flight to the ISS this August is Russia’s S. P. Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia’s built Progress M-61 supply spacecraft.
It will be carrying spare computers to replace those that failed temporarily during June.
Back at NASA preparations are underway for the Mars Phoenix lander August lift off, while the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s DAWN launch has been bumped from this month to September.
And finally, to read how US president George Bush made his position on NASA’s funding entirely clear, click here…
S. P. Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia has announced, in a statement dated 26-27 June, that Vitalii Alexandrovich Lopota has been appointed first vice president and designer general of the company that makes the manned Soyuz and unmanned Progress spacecraft. This follows the 25 June statement, posted on the company's website, about the suspension of its then high profile president and general designer Nikolai Sevastiyanov.
In the spirit of the 787 build-up I found an amusing video about the A350 vs 787. Enjoy.
Look and read carefully, or you'll miss the point here on this cartoon circulating the web describing rather succinctly the current fortunes of Boeing and Airbus.