Friday, August 31, 2007

Hornet Fighter Finding a New Home

The Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum will soon have a new attraction. The United States Navy has just donated a supersonic F/A-18 Hornet fighter to the museum. This navy workhorse cost $60 million to build and has been used by the Navy since 1983. Only about 1,800 Hornets were built, this particular Hornet was a part of the Flying Gators squadron based in Atlanta and has recently flown missions in Iraq.

Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum will spend about $18,000 to relocate the jet from Cecile Field in Jacksonville, FL. When it arrives at the museum, it will make its new home on the flight deck of the Yorktown aircraft carries I ‘Charleston Harbor.

This only the second plane to be added to the museum in 13 years. It will be ready public viewing at the end of September.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Does Our Air Traffice Control system need to be modernized?

Did you happen to be on one of the 80,000 commercial flights that were delayed this year? Maybe while you were setting on the tarmac waiting to take off, circling for hours waiting for Air traffic control to open up a spot so you could land or you might have found yourself on a jet that had to fly thousands of miles out of the way, you asked yourself, WHY??

Air traffic is projected to grow by 33% in the next ten years, with delays growing by 62%. Is Mother Nature responsible for all the delays? It is possible that she may be the cause of some delays; an antiquated air traffic control system is probably more at fault.

The current ATC system is a system that we have used since 1950. It is an aging analog and radar based network that forces aircraft to fly inefficient routes which add up to hundred of thousand of extra mile each year. This adds to delays, and burns millions of gallons of extra fuel.

Currently there are approximately 45,000 daily flights. Annalists expect that number to increase to 61,000 flights per day within 10 years. What can you do to encourage congress to turn loose funding to pay for upgrades in the aging ATC system? Go to, and enter your zip code. This will take you to a pre written letter and links to your congressmen. Just fill in your name, and will forward a letter to your congressmen urging them to update our outdated air traffic control system.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

AOPA Petition Against User Fees

AOPA Petition Against User Fees

Friday, July 20, 2007

Air Venture Oshkosh

If you love aviation you must take in the Air Venture Oshkosh being held July 23 through July 29th. More than 750,000 flight enthusiasts will be in Wisconsin for the big show. Chuck Yeager will be there to talk about breaking the sound barrier and you won't want to miss the air show. For more info go to or call 920-426-4800.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

To Get To The Other Side

Why did the EU Transport Commissioner create a deadline for an open-sky agreement? Because he has the law on his side. At issue is an agreement between the EU and the US to allow airline access between any EU and US city.
On March 22, the EU must get a majority of votes from 27 member states to pass the open-sky agreement for flights across the Atlantic. Ultimately, airline traffic would increase and the creation of more jobs would follow. Currently, US relies on bilateral agreements with member states for flights. A failure to get a majority at the talks would subjugate the member states to the European Court of Justice for violating a law against such bilateral aviation pacts, according to Reuters.
Britain, however, has a potential veto and is likely to be the biggest deterrent. The problem is that it would result in greater access to London's Heathrow Airport. British Airways and Virgin Atlantic may lose competitiveness. The Transport Commissioner believes that a 2008 agreement would lead to access of the US domestic market, offsetting losses.
The US would face new restrictions in the investments of EU airlines. The US has no plans to alter the 49% maximum foreign-ownership policy and open investment opportunities.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Blowing Hot and Cold

Flight-planning software is the latest strategy for airlines in the evermore competitive airline industry. Increased fuel and operating costs have expanded the use of logic and logarithmic programs used onboard commercial airplanes and in dispatch centers. These traveling-salesmen-problem computations were not previously available, or at least not with the obvious savings, until recently. Now, airlines can benefit from real-time data of wind and weather information to consider the optimal route to save time, fuel, and overfly fees, the charges to fly over airspaces. As flight paths change daily, the Wall Street Journal reported today that airlines can make last-minute changes to reduce expenses.
British Airways, using Deutsche Luftansa's Lido system, reported a savings of $5,767 in overfly fees, one less ton of fuel usage, and 18 minutes for a one-way flight from SAO-Paulo to London. It is estimated that British Airways saves over $23 million each year from the use of alternate routes. Companies offering such software include Lockheed Martin, EDS, Sabre Holdings Corp, SITA, and Boeing's Jeppesen unit.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Ailing Airbus

The Wall Street Journal reported today that problems are developing concerning the restructuring plans of Airbus. Although, the CEO said these problems wouldn't affect deliveries, already Airbus employees in France in Germany are protesting in the streets.
The issue is the solicitation of foreign investors and the closing of three plants in the two countries. More than 10,000 jobs, nearly 20% of the workforce, are to be cut within the next four years and related costs in 2007 are expected to be nearly $1 billion. Employees are justifiably fearful of more closures in the future. Delays have already occurred in the production of the A380 and the development of the A350 twin-aisle jet has already exceeded expected costs.
These problems come amid a growing rivalry with U.S.'s Boeing. The A380 superjumbo jetliner proved to be effective in test flights and has nearly 200 orders. The quiet-running plane features wide seats and a bar. Production, however, is already two years behind, according to the Economist.