Personal Plane of The Future

With road traffic worsening across the United States at alarming rates, it’s no surprise that many dream of taking to the skies like George and Judy Jetson. However, people might be shocked to learn that several companies are attempting to make these pipe dreams a reality.


Enter the ICON A5, which is classified by the FAA as a “light sport” plane. Capable of landing on either water or traditional airstrips, this plane promises to cut the hassle out of travel. However, it’s not the only personal plane that is being buzzed about these days. As people begin to explore alternatives outside of the  traditional commute, there are many new and exciting aircrafts being developed.

Terrafugia Transition

One is dubbed the Terrafugia Transition, and it’s poised to make its sparkling debut within the next 24 months or so. If the roll-out goes as planned, this vehicle could definitely be a game changer. As soon as pilots land at their chosen airstrips or destinations, they will be able to drive to where they need to go, in the same vehicle! As many have pointed out, this will eliminate the need to get a rental car, as well as eliminating a trip to the airport. Pilot drivers will just pick up and fly wherever they want. The FAA will need to create regulations for these revolutionary new vehicles, but there is a real push for them to be designed.Consumers are sick of standing in long lines at airports and dealing with the stress and strife of traveling these days, so the hybrid vehicles would solve multiple transportation issues in one fell swoop.

The SuperSTOL

The SuperSTOL is a tiny aircraft designed to land in small spaces. All these vehicle owners would need is about 150 feet of “runway”—as opposed to the thousands of feet usually required when landing an aircraft of similar size.

For those who are wondering about obtaining licenses for these types of planes, the FAA is making things easy. Instead of requiring massive amounts of time training in the air, flyers will need to take about 20 hours of flight training classes. At the rate of about $5,000, it may be an affordable solution for those who are looking to slash their commute times—and have fun while getting to work.

Three receive Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Awards

A bust of Charles Taylor

LINCOLN, NEB. — Joe Huffman, Sr., an FAA Certification Engineer with Duncan Aviation, and Bernard Michael, a former long-time technician with Duncan Aviation, were recently honored as recipients of the Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award.

The Nebraska Aviation Mechanics Seminar committee and the FAA presented them with the awards at a banquet  Jan. 29.

A bust of Charles Taylor

A bust of Charles Taylor

The Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award is named in honor of Charles Taylor, the first aviation mechanic in powered flight. Taylor served as the Wright brothers’ mechanic and is credited with designing and building the engine for their first successful aircraft. The award recognizes the lifetime accomplishments of senior mechanics.

Award recipients are required to have worked for 50 years in an aviation maintenance career and must have been an FAA-certificated mechanic or repairman working on N-registered aircraft for a minimum of 30 of the 50 years required.

Huffman has been employed in aviation for 50 years, including 48 at Duncan Aviation. He first became a pilot just after graduating from Lincoln High School in 1961. After graduation, he worked for Wallace Tiller in Bellevue as a landscaper until 1963. From there, he went on to his first aviation job in 1963, working at South Omaha Airport in Omaha, Nebraska. He lived there until 1965, when he moved to Denison, Iowa, and worked as a mechanic, instructor and charter pilot until 1967. He moved back to Lincoln in 1967 to work at Duncan Aviation and has remained there since.

During World War II, Bernard Michael developed a love of aviation from watching B-17s rumble over his father’s farm as they made their way from the Boeing factory toward the European Theater. When he came of age, he served his country by joining the Air Force. He spent most of his military duty working Counter Intelligence in the Philippines. After leaving the military, he attended Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology, where he graduated with an Airframe/Powerplant license and a commercial pilot certificate.

In January 1966, he started his 50-year aircraft maintenance career with Douglas Aircraft Co. in Tulsa, Okla. Moving around the Midwest, he repaired flight controls for Douglas Aircraft Co. in Oklahoma, performed IA inspections in Iowa, agricultural spraying in Kansas, and was a jet airframe shop supervisor for Duncan Aviation in Nebraska. Receiving the FAA’s Central Region Certificate of Recognition for Outstanding Accident Prevention was one of the highlights of his aviation career.

Retired now, Michael continues to perform aircraft maintenance for friends at the Lincoln Airport and enjoys assisting with local air shows.

A third aviation technician, George Czarnecki of Central Cylinder Service in Omaha, was also presented with the Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award at the banquet.

via General Aviation News

Soaring Society of American convention prepares to take off

The 2016 Soaring Society of America Convention will be held Feb. 18-20 at the TD Convention Center in Greenville, S.C.

“This year’s convention will bring together a variety of sailplane pilots, from avid contestants to locally flying club members in a great location — Greenville, S.C.,” said SSA Chairman Ken Sorenson.

Visitors will have access to the latest in sailplane technology, instruments, books, flight-related gadgets, and apparel.

Additionally, specialists in the field will provide lectures and presentations. Sailplane dealers will present the latest models from manufacturers around the globe, and soaring schools will provide flight simulators and instruction materials and information.

With tens of aircraft on display and around 70 exhibitors, the convention expects more than 3,000 visitors, both local and from around the country.

The speakers’ presentations will cover topics relevant to flying safety, weather, soaring technology, instruction, and aerobatics.

This year’s keynote speaker is Mark “Forger” Stucky, a military and government test pilot. He has flown for the U.S. Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, NASA, and international partners, logging more than 9,000 flight hours in over 170 different models of aircraft.

In addition, the 2016 Soaring Society of America Awards will be presented during the Saturday evening banquet.


via General Aviation News

Student pilot balloons on landing

The solo student pilot reported that he took off with the intent to remain in the airport traffic pattern in Ramona, Calif., and do touch and go takeoffs and landings.

During the landing on the second circuit, the Cessna 172 ballooned during the flare. When he continued to attempt the landing, the plane ballooned a second time and started to veer to the right.

Following a third balloon, as it veered to the right and touched down, he applied left brake and rudder.

The plane exited the runway to the left and hit a berm and a rock, which resulted in substantial damage to the right wing.

The NTSB determined the probable cause as the student pilot’s inadequate flare and failure to maintain directional control during landing, which resulted in a runway excursion and collision with terrain.

NTSB Identification: WPR14CA122

This February 2014 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it is intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.

via General Aviation News

Pictures of the day: Sunset over Mexico


Enrique Sanchez sent in this photos, explaining: “Sunset over Tequesquitengo Lake in the state of Morelos, Mexico. I built this Zenith 601HD seven years ago. Now my dear friend Benjamin Eljure (the gentleman with the glasses) is the proud owner of this beautiful aircraft. He is with Roberto Macias, our friend and very skilled pilot and flight instructor.”Sanchez 5 Sanchez1 sanchez2 Sanchez3 Sanchez4

via General Aviation News