Aviation News, Space Stories, Drone Dispatches, UFO Rumours #26

It’s Monday February 11th and here is Redspan Aviation News #26.

In this edition:

1. Boeing and aviation fans everywhere celebrate 50 years of the Jumbo.
2. CAA Safety Sense leaflets now appearing in video format.
3. When to go around and when you’re committed to land.
4. Drone Major’s Guide to Counter-Drone Technology.

Hello, my name is Ben Lovegrove and here is this week’s round-up of aviation news from high altitude to below 400 feet.

Each week I bring you selected stories about aerial activity; from space exploration to general aviation, from drones to UFOs.

Head over to Redspan.com to find out how I can make marketing videos for your aviation business.

So chocks away then.

1. Some aircraft are in a class of their own and the Boeing 747 is one of them. This aircraft is a classic of the late 20th Century.

Like Concorde, the Spitfire, or the Ferrari Dino it has a unique design and a character that has been present in two generations.

It has appeared in numerous films, as Air Force One, and as the carrier for the Space Shuttle.

The ‘face’ of a Jumbo is unmistakable and we’ve seen it in countless situations, the saddest of which was the Lockerbie bombing of 1988.

When it was developed half a century ago it was double the size of any other airliner at that time, and consequently it revolutionsed air travel.

It reduced the cost of long haul flights to such an extent that such journeys became affordable to a huge new market.

In 50 years it has carried over 3.5 billion passengers and countless amounts of cargo.

Boeing took a big gamble with developing it but within two years of service it becamse clear that it was to be a huge success.

And although today’s new airliners are more efficient and economic to run, the Boeing 747 Jumbo Jet will be flying for many years to come.

2. The UK’s Civil Aviation Authority’s Safety Sense leaflets have been available for several decades. These short but informative publications are packed full of valuable advice for both novice pilots eager to instill good habits, and older pilots who need a reminder.

Until now these leaflets were only available in print or in PDF, downloaded from www.caa.co.uk/safetysense, but I’ve started converting them into videos in order to make them accessible to a wider audience.

The first video is Safety Sense leaflet #3, Winter Flying. This was split into several parts, all of which are available on my channel. The next one is #1, Good Airmanship. This is in two parts with part 1 available now and the second in a few days time.

Reading through these leaflets is an education. Putting the advice into practice will make you a better pilot, keep you out of danger, and may just save your life one day.

So please view and share them widely in the general aviation community so that others may benefit.

3. Speaking of safety, go-arounds are a normal procedure familiar to pilots of any aircraft, whether they fly a Piper Cub, an F/A-18 Hornet, or a Boeing 747.

Recently, as Storm Erik passed through the UK we saw more examples of go-arounds appearing in the media, with headlines such as “Plane Struggles To Land At Heathrow…”.

These reports are invariably sensational and convey the idea that the pilot is desperately wrestling with the flight controls in a dangerous attempt at landing.

They suggest that the pilot has somehow failed and has therefore endangered the aircraft and passengers.

The truth, as 747 pilot Scott Bateman reminds us in an excellent thread on Twitter, is somewhat different.

A go around is a manoeuvre for which air crews practice. They will do so if the aircraft has not touched down at the correct point on the runway. They may even decide to go around even if the aircraft has landed.

Far from being a failure, a go around shows professionalism and demonstrates that the pilot has made the correct decision.

Look up Scott Bateman @jumbo747pilot on Twitter and read the full thread.

However, sometimes a go around is not an option. At some mountain airfields the terrain does not give the pilot any choice but to land correctly each time or face the dire consequences.

On an airstrip built into the side of a mountain a go around is often impossible because the land rises so steeply ahead.

Another clip doing the rounds on social media at the moment is of a Piper Malibu Mirage landing at the notoriously tricky runway at Courchevel, in the French Alps. The aircraft lands too late on the runway leaving too little time to brake. The aircraft slows but does not stop and comes to rest in a bank of snow.

Fortunately no one was killed but there were some slight injuries among the occupants, and it must have been an unsettling experience.

The only way to learn how to land safely at airfields like this where there is no go around option is alongside an experienced pilot who can teach you everything you need to know about flying the approach such that you touch down at the correct point on the runway.

4. In light of the recent media focus on this issue, it is easy to think that air drone technology is a threat, if not just inconvenient to those who experienced delayed flights or evacuation. It is hard to refute the latter, but Drone Major Group takes a firm stance that air drone technology is not inherently dangerous. Indeed, the advancements and innovations in the industry shed light on a promising future in terms of business advancements, if implemented correctly. Drone Major Group poses the following questions as a baseline for considering counter-drone systems:

In which environment (surface, underwater, air or space) is your organisation rendered most vulnerable to unwarranted drone interference?
If a rogue drone is detected, what are the immediate precautionary actions to be taken to protect the security of both personnel and any sensitive data?
After a drone interaction is confirmed, what will be done to remove the drone from the area?
Once the situation has been resolved, what can be learnt to further enhance procedures?

Once suitable policies and procedures are in place to safely and efficiently address an unwanted drone, an organisation may choose to explore the various Counter Drone technologies that have become available on the market. Drone Major is available to offer expert consultancy at any stage of this process. Visit their site, www.dronemajorgroup.com, for more information.

That’s all for this edition of Redspan Aviation News. I look forward to bringing you more about the fascinating world of aviation and space exploration soon.

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