Pitts Progress

On Friday the 29th January I made a quick visit into Rangiora and found that the Aerotek Pitts S-1S ZK-FRJ had just completed its compass swing and was very close to flying following its very thorough rebuild : still needing its canopy and perhaps its prop spinner fitted. I hope Morris will come aboard this blog soon and tell us more about this lovely little aircraft.

ZK-AMY on finals for NZCH 20

Following on from the Lake ZK-DQN being at Darfield today we have this pic provided by "rollnburn" of the Douglas DC-3 ZK-AMY on finals for runway 20 at Christchurch.
AMY was returning this afternoon from its joyriding flights from Darfield.
Matt also supplied a pic of ZK-DQN taken at Darfield which I have added to the appropriate blog below.

New terminal in May

Dubrovnik Airport's new terminal
In May, just before the start of the high summer tourist season, Dubrovnik Airport will open the doors of its new, multi million Euro, terminal (terminal B), which is currently the largest infrastructure project in the country. The new terminal stretches over 13.700 square metres and has 2 air bridges connecting the terminal building with aircraft. It is the first airport in Croatia to have air bridges.

In the arrivals hall, located at the ground floor of the terminal, one will find 3 conveyer belts for baggage claim, 2 for international flights and 1 for domestic services. The first and second floors stretch over 1.300 square metres and will contain 4 gates and 2 air bridges. Offices and a gallery will be placed on the third floor. The new terminal will also have retail space of up to 575 square metres where a duty free shop, 2 coffee bars and a bistro, as well as tour operators’ offices will be located. A VIP lounge will take up 125 square metres.

Dubrovnik Airport will become the most modern airport in Croatia, well in front of the country’s main airport, Zagreb, which is still pondering over the construction of a new terminal.

Question time # 87

What is this then ?
What type/model aircraft would you expect to find it on ?
Would you care to put a ZK registration on it ?

Lake Buccaneer ZK-DQN update

The above photograph was provided by "rollnburn" and was taken at Darfield earlier today (Sunday 31-01-2010)
An earlier blog at http://design-plane.blogspot.com/2010/01/couple-of-new-ones-at-nzrt.html showed the Aerofab Inc built Lake LA-4-200 Buccaneer ZK-DQN c/n 1045 during its rebuild at Whangarei and its recent arrival at Rangiora.
Today I also caught up with ZK-DQN at West Melton as it landed back from a mission to Darfield.
This new venture is a partnership between Chris Johnston and Paul Dalley with Paul being the Vanuatu based pilot and Chris managing the Company from NZ. Chris will also be the relief pilot as required.
The aircraft is due to head north on Tuesday towards Whangarei where it is due to receive its export C of A on February the 8th. This will be followed by a ferry flight to Vanuatu.

New flights to Belgrade

Soon in Belgrade
Another airline recently announced new flights to Belgrade’s Nikola Tesla Airport. The low cost Danish airline Cimber Sterling will commence 3 weekly flights from Copenhagen to Belgrade using its Boeing B737-700. Flights are set to commence on March 29. Cimber Air merged parts of Sterling Airlines into its network after the latter proclaimed bankruptcy in late 2008. Interestingly, most of Sterling’s fleet was grounded in Belgrade upon the bankruptcy announcement as the airline used Jat Tehnika to service its aircraft.

Cimber Sterling will be in direct competition with Jat Airways on the route. Although ticket prices vary, an average return ticket with Cimber Sterling on this service will set passengers back 200 Euros (all taxes included). On the other hand, the average price with Jat Airways amounts to 255 Euros (all taxes included).

Meanwhile, rumours are circulating that Spanair will commence scheduled flights between Barcelona and Belgrade from the 2010 summer season. If these rumours become a reality, it would be the first time in 19 years that the two cities have been connected via a direct scheduled air service.

Whereabouts Unknown Auster J1 c/n 2341.

The Auster 5 J1 with the construction number (c/n) 2341 was I believe imported into New Zealand from Australia and is undergoing a rebuild.

This aircraft built in the UK was first registered as G-AJIX on 21-05-1947.
It was sold and exported in October of 1951, going to Australia to become VH-AQN2 from 17-01-1952.
It was re-registered as VH-AQO2 on 02-12-1953 and finally became VH-SAD on 05-07-1955.

I would be most interested in hearing from you if you can advise me of the current location and status of this aircraft.

For reason fairly obvious - I cannot provide a photograph.

Worth a chocolate fish I reckon.

ZK-HVQ on its way down South

Robinson R44 ZK-HVQ4 c/n 0235 is captured here at Heli Maintenance at Christchurch on 26-01-2010 having its blade tracking checked and a few other items tended to before continuing its ferry flight to its new operator, Stewart Island Helicopters.
An ex Japanese import in 2004 by Rotor Flite N.Z. Ltd of Auckland it has served with Salt Air of Paihia ; Elite Helicopters at Tauranga ; Bay Heliwork of Hastings and Alabaster Helicopters of Taihape with a recent lease to Helicopter Operations Ltd of Tirau.

Harvard ZK-XSA has a new home

North American NA78 Harvard 3* ZK-XSA c/n 78-6647 is now located in its own hangar at Rangiora following a move from its short term stay at Christchurch International and its longer term at Forest Field [NZFF] before that.
Built for the USAAF as a AT-6A it was allocated the military serial of 41-16269 and was briefly listed on the US civil register as NC57209 to a Sidney Smith of Santa Ana in California before becoming 7660 with the South African Air Force. It arrived at Ardmore on 07-10-1996 to be registered to the Graham Orphan and John Kelly Syndicate of Blenheim on 21-11-1996. Its first flight in NZ was the following day at Ardmore. It was relisted to the Harvard 7660 Syndicate of Rangiora on 22-03-1998.
This aircraft has its own web site at http://www.harvard7660.co.nz/home.htm
Worth a look.
It occupies the hangar previously used by the Piper PA-46-310P N9099Z c/n 46-08007 which has migrated to Nelson.

Maribor terminal expansion

15 million Euro overhaul for Maribor Airport
The Slovenian Transport Ministry is to launch an infrastructure overhaul at the Edvard Rusjan Airport in Maribor, Slovenia's second largest airport. The 15 million Euro project, which will be mostly funded by the European Regional Development Fund, is expected to be complete in 2013. The head of the Slovenian Civil Aviation Directorate, Mirko Komac, told the press in Ljubljana that the project was a logical follow-up to the modernisation of the airport infrastructure carried out from 2004 through to 2007.

The planned revamp is aimed at improving the quality of services, contributing to the development of the region and boosting the competitiveness of the airport, Komac said. He added that investments were a prerequisite for a strong, market-oriented presentation of the airport's international transport capacities. The project includes the extension and overhaul of the passenger terminal, drafting of the airport's master plan and the refurbishment of the airport buildings, Damjan Horvat of the directorate explained. The reconstruction of the terminal will be carried out by construction company SCT and is expected to be concluded in 2011. The master plan, which will provide a development concept through to 2040, will be created by Airport Consulting Vienna and the Ljubljana Urban Planning Institute. It is also expected to be complete in 2011.

The Transport Ministry has prepared documentation to call for applications for a long-term lease of Maribor Airport. The documentation is expected to be published in early February, the ministry said, adding that there is a lot of interest.

Meanwhile, Ljubljana Airport is planning a new passenger terminal, which is expected to be finished in 2012, while the new control centre at Slovenia's main international airport is expected to be complete by April 2011.

Maribor Airport is currently not being served by any airline. It will cater for several airlines, including the national carrier Adria Airways for 2 weeks in April, as a result of Ljubljana Airport’s closure during its runway overhaul. The airport was, for a short time, served by Ryanair in 2008 before the budget carrier completely terminated operations in Slovenia.

Korean Air awarded by Global Traveler Readers

Korean Air recently awarded by Global Traveler Readers, this photo is taken at the award presentation ceremony.

Doctor Dave's toy

If you call in at Palmerston North airport, you really can't miss Dave Baldwin's acquisition. Located just between his building and the boundary fence, it's pretty near impossible to get a reasonable photo of this relic.

This is actually the fuselage of Embraer EMB-110P1 Bandeirante ZK-REV. This particular Bandit went to Australia in 1980 as a new aircraft, serving with Airlines of Tasmania, East Coast Commuter Airlines, Skywest Airlines and Lloyd Aviation as VH-KIR before a sojourn in PNG as P2-NAL with Nationair 1986-93.
Arriving in NZ on 9Oct1993 with 17769hrs on the clock it became ZK-REV with Rex Aviation (NZ) Ltd., Wellington 27Oct1993 and was flown in Tranzair colours on regional Ansett NZ routes as seen here at Rongotai in 1994.

A few years later the Tranzair colours had been replaced by a more definite Ansett presence, as seen at Whangarei in 1996.

Ownership was transferred to Tasman Pacific Airlines of NZ Ltd., Christchurch 18Aug2000 and the registration was cancelled the same day. The aircraft was dismantled at Wellington with reusable spare parts reclaimed for shipment to Singapore. The fuselage went to Massey University at Palmerston North where is saw little use before passing eventually to Dr Baldwin, at Milson in 2008. Currently in use as a lunchroom/recreation area there are plans to utilize it as a hypoxia training unit.

More Replica Cubs in New Zealand - the Final Chapter?

This is probably the last post in my series of Replica Cubs in New Zealand. And these are real aeroplanes! They are Wag Aero Cuby's which are full size replicas built from original Piper plans and jigs, so you can get a completely welded fuselage for example. Wag Aero was formed by Dick Wagner in the 1960's in Lyons, Wisconsin, USA and it has expanded since then to market kit planes and sell parts for homebuilt planes from a large catalogue of supplies. Wag Aero supply the Sport Trainer kit which is based on the J3 Cub, plus the Wag-A-Bond side by side 2 seater kit and the Sportsman 2+2 4 place kit, which are also replicas of earlier Piper models. Our first Cuby Sport Trainer was ZK-MPH which was built by Darcy Hoffman in Dunedin and was first registered on 29/4/82. It was sold to HCR Campion of Dunedin on 3/5/89 and to CT Keenan of Christchurch on 2/4/96. It was cancelled on 16/2/2000 when it was sold to the UK where it was registered as G-BZHU. It is still current in the UK. It is photographed here at an AACA fly-in at Queenstown.
Our second Cuby is ZK-OLE which was also built in Dunedin by HJL Haugh, and was first registered on 29/4/89. It is photographed here at the SAANZ fly-in at Ashburton in February 2001. Thanks to Greybeard for the photo.

There is one more New Zealand homebuilt aeroplane that looks like a Cub replica to me, although the builder says it has very few Cub parts. This is the Westland Bush Plane which was posted by Greybeard on this blog in April 2008. You can find Greybeard's post at: http://design-plane.blogspot.com/2008/04/westland-bush-plane.html

Croatia dumps Belgrade and delays Athens

In Athens from June 10
Despite plans to begin flights to the Serbian capital on May 1, 2010, Croatia Airlines has dumped the proposed flights which were to operate 4 times per week using the airline’s new Dash 8 aircraft. Flights between the 2 cities would have been resumed after some 19 years. The airline also recently announced that it was withdrawing from Rijeka with the termination of its 1 weekly flight to London. Croatia Airlines is also terminating seasonal flights from Zagreb to Gothenburg and Dubrovnik to London.

However, from March 28, Croatia Airlines will commence non-stop flights to Rome. This compliments the 5 weekly service via Split and 2 weekly via Dubrovnik. The flights will operate with the Dash 8. Meanwhile, the launch of the airline’s new service to Athens has been pushed back from April 29 to June 10. The 3 weekly flights from Zagreb will operate only on a seasonal summer basis.

In the midst of its summer timetable reshuffling, the Croatian national carrier is also bracing itself for strike action. All of the airline’s unions are preparing a 1 day strike on February 11. If their demands are not met further strikes will be organised. They are unhappy with proposed pay cuts.

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Recently cancelled

Three recent cancellations !
PZL-Swidnik PW-5 "Smyk" ZK-GWN c/n 17.03.004 was registered to the Wellington Gliding Club on 28-03-1995. Cancelled on 06-01-2010 as exported. Pic at Paraparaumu on 02-12-2007.
Above is the Schempp-Hirth HS7 Janus ZK-GLM c/n 54. Arriving at Auckland and registered to Roy Evans on 23-11-1977 it first flew here on the 26th. It went to the Janus LM Syndicate if Auckland on 10-11-1987 and was listed to the Wellington Gliding Club Inc on 01-03-1993. Cancelled on 06-01-2010 as exported. Alas I know not where they have gone. Pic also shot the same day.
Schweizer 269C-1 ZK-HVX2 c/n S0054 was created in early 2000 as N20035 and joined Heli-Flight (NZ) Ltd of Masterton on 13-02-2003.
A move to Auckland with the new Heliflight Ltd was noted on 09-09-2007.
On 24-01-2009 it struck the ground whilst low flying near Thames and was cancelled on 13-01-2010.

The insured fly with Jat

Jat hoping for bigger queues with free travel insurance
All passengers purchasing a return ticket with Jat Airways to a destination within the European Union will now receive free travel insurance, valid during the flight and throughout their stay at their desired destination. The news comes as the company “DDOR Novi Sad” won the public tender.

Health insurance cards for Serbian citizens are not valid in the European Union and they are thus obliged to have travel insurance in a foreign country. Their insurance will be covered simply by buying a return ticket on Jat Airways. The insurance covers up to 5.000 Euros of medical expenses resulting from an unforeseen illness or as a consequence of an accident that occurred during their stay abroad. The insurance will cover the passenger’s costs of necessary hospital or clinical treatment, medicines, medical supplies, transport to the nearest hospital, urgent surgeries due to acute disease, dental treatment due to acute problems, transport to their country of residence and other types of assistance.

"By introducing free travel insurance, our wish is to prove that our care for passengers is not only limited to the time they spend onboard our aircraft", Jat Airways CEO, Srdjan Radovanović, said adding that, "Between numerous companies trying to win over the attention of every passenger, those that succeed will be those that take care of their passengers and try to meet their demands in the best possible way by constantly introducing new services".

The new amenity could particularly entice private companies purchasing tickets for their employees travelling on business. The introduction of free travel insurance is another service outlined in Jat’s 2010 recovery plan. The airline hopes to transport 1.5 million passengers by the end of 2010.

Not ZK, but still of interest....

Outside at Ardmore today, 27Jan, undergoing engine runs was this magnificant De Havilland DH89 Rapide, G-ADDD.

Thanks to Anon, we now know the original G-ADDD was owned by the Prince of Wales from mid 1935 and absorbed into the newly-created Kings Flight in July 1936. It was replaced by an Airspeed Envoy in 1937 and bought by Western Airways in Nov 1938 before moving to the RAF.

This particular airframe is c/n 6782 ex NR683, G-AHXW and N683DH restored as "G-ADDD".

North Shore / Dairy Flat 25Jan10

The Whenuapai Sports and Aviation Club now have online Cessna 152 ZK-BUD/2, seen here on finals at North Shore. It once lived at North Shore registered ZK-NSG from Feb 98 until Sep 09 and prior to that wore ZK-EOY.

Cessna 172N ZK-MDV is registered to MDR Aviation who are operating as www.flighthauraki.co.nz, the titles of which this aircraft now wears.

Mentioned in detail at http://design-plane.blogspot.com/2009/12/speaking-of-harmon-rockets.html, ZK-RMD is pictured here sprinting down runway 03 at North Shore on a local flight.

Korean Air Recorded Strong Performance in Q4 2009

Seoul, January 22, 2010 – Korean Air, South Korea’s flagship airline, announced today its results for the fourth quarter of 2009 ended December 31, 2009.

The airline posted an operating profit of 154 billion KRW for the fourth quarter, a significant increase of 580.9% compared to 22.6 billion KRW a year earlier, thanks to the surging growth of cargo business and a pick-up in the international passenger business in the reporting period. During the quarter, the airline recorded a net income of 122.3 billion KRW, compared to a loss of 644 billion KRW in the same quarter in the previous year. Operating revenue held steady at 2,578.2 billion KRW during the quarter in spite of a challenging operating environment for the aviation industry. International passenger and cargo businesses remained the major revenue contributors for the airline in Q4, accounting for 48.1% and 36.5% of the operating revenue respectively.

Lower fuel prices and a stronger Won have helped reduce the airline’s operating expense. During the reporting period, total operating expense reached 2,424.2 billion KRW, an Y-o-Y drop of 9.9%. The proportion of fuel cost lowered from 38% to 33% compared with the fourth quarter in 2008.

International Passenger Business
International passenger segment recorded a growth of 6.5% and 11.3% in passenger carrying capacity and traffic compared to a drop in the same period a year ago, reaching 18,746 million ASK and 13,444 million RPK respectively. Both figures were particularly strong in the month of December due to increasing air travel during the festive season. Moreover, an Y-o-Y growth in passenger sales from Japan and South Asia is observed, attributed to stronger Yen against the Won as well as increasing air traffic demand in the Asian region.

Cargo Business
The cargo business has picked up since September 2009 and reached new heights in the fourth quarter of 2009. Revenue generated from the cargo segment was up 22% Y-o-Y, becoming the major growth driver in total revenue during the reporting period. Demand for world cargo rose steadily as reflected in an improvement in capacity and traffic, up 6% and 15.2% Y-o-Y to 3,179 million AFTK and 2,408 million FTK respectively. The increased cargo traffic coincided with the usual busy season for the cargo business ahead of festivities such as Thanksgiving and Christmas, while a recovery in consumer spending worldwide also fueled the growth in this segment.

2010 Plans
The airline has made significant operational progress such as refurbishment of new generation premium seats as well as fleet expansion last year. Upholding its long-standing commitment to achieving “Excellence in Flight” as it always does, Korean Air will continue its approach in expanding and optimizing its business in a prudent manner, while aiming to provide the best quality in its service in 2010.

In terms of fleet expansion, the airline has announced orders to add Boeing 787s and Airbus 380s to its fleet mix. The airline expects to add seven more aircrafts to its fleet in 2010 and another 15 in 2011. Total investment amount in fleet purchase, upgrade and refurbishment will increase by over 50% in 2010, showing the airline’s determination in bringing the best travel experience and ultimate comfort to its passengers in the air.

Korean Air will continue its concerted efforts to maximize the profitability of the cargo business through different initiatives. With the turnaround in world cargo demand and the pick up of exports volume, the airline expects that this business segment will be the growth driver again in 2010 and revenue generated will reach another peak.

Other business initiatives such as network expansion by developing high-potential new markets and stringent cost-control will continue in 2010. Korean Air is confident that its focused growth strategies will help overcome any challenges even though the outlook of the aviation industry remains uncertain.

* Exchange rate on December 31, 2009: 1 US Dollar = [1167.6] KRW


Sebring Day Four: Garmin "Supersizes" G3X

Garmin's Tim Casey debuted two spiffy new software packages for owners of the G3X glass cockpit.
The first package brings expanded monitoring of flight functions and engine performance to the unit/s (you can gang in up to three screens on your panel).
Tres cool: the G3X is completely user-customizable, perfect for LSA and experimental owners.
Some of the monitoring functions:
* Manifold pressure
* oil temperature and pressure
* Coolant temperature and pressure
* Fuel pressure
* Up to six CHT inputs
* Up to six EGT inputs
* Carburetor temperature
* Dual voltage inputs
* Fuel flow (single or differential)
* Trim position (three-axis)
* Flap position
* Fuel quantity inputs
Engine sensor kits will work with Lycoming, Continental, Rotax, and Jabiru engines.
The other upgrade brings mode interface, allowing remote control of the G3X to TruTrak autopilots.
Both packages will be available to owners for free download in about two weeks, says Garmin.

Sebring Day Four: High, Wide and Sunny

After five days of hustle and bustle to get the talking, shooting, flying and writing done at Sebring (I'm an Air Force of One), I got a real treat: pal Dave Graham, who's worked tirelessly since the beginning to bring the Gobosh line of LSA to America and get the two lovely low-wing models they represent on the map (Gobosh currently ranks 15th on Dan Johnson's market list), offered me the left seat in a Gobosh 700S so up we went.
We tooled around beneath the broken clouds in the waning yellow-orange afternoon light, chattering away about all things LSA, and life in general -- real smell-the-roses time.
Dave, a native of Ireland, is a well-read, very bright guy who's got a clear pov about all kinds of things and is a tirelessly engaging conversationalist.
He's been a pilot for 20 years and is passionate about aviation, plain and simple.
We flew all over, rolling and darting around the clouds in the rain-washed skies, turning the 700S on a dime over blue lakes, rural towns, warm emerald-green swampland and orange groves for almost an hour -- the perfect way to end the show.
The 700S, as Dave likes to describe it, is indeed "alive": it's responsive, yet stable, gives you great feedback, feels like an airplane should, and is one of those LSA that's always and completely an absolute pleasure to fly. Can't wait to go up again.
Thanks Dave!

Sebring Day Four: O Say, Can You Fly!

Is this a heart-warming story or what? It brings out my deepest love of country - where else but in America could we even be talking about this?
Details: Tampa Bay Online ran a story this morning about a gentleman named Gregory Lawrence (no relation). Greg, 61, was at Sebring and I'm really sorry I didn't meet him because although he's been deaf from childhood, get this: he intends to be the first deaf flight instructor!
The story linked above gives you more details, just wanted to tag this because it inspired me. What a tribute to the spirit and love of aviation, and the freedom America bestows on all of us to dream a dream so magnificent!
I'll be in contacting Greg for a followup story on this: the challenges are daunting, no doubt, but the potential rewards? Indescribably, wonderfully human. Bless you sir and Godspeed!

North Islanders (and a Little Sister)

Following the selection of South Islanders photographed at Queenstown by Wayne Grant and posted by Mike Condon, herewith a selection of North Islanders photographed at Mangere earlier tonight. There are a total of 20 Britten Norman Islanders currently registered in New Zealand.
ZK-SFK (c/n 236) was first registered in New Zealand on 7/10/03. It has been operated by Southflight Aviation then Wings Over Whales at Kaikoura but is now owned by Commercial Helicopters Ltd of Taumaranui. It is operated by Fly My Sky which flys daily to Great Barrier Island. ZK-SFK is ex VH-CPG/OO-GVS (Belgium) and G-51-236.
Next is ZK-PIZ (c/n 2012) which is operated by Great Barrier Airlines but is owned by the Fly My Sky people, Commercial Helicopters Ltd of Taumaranui. It wa first registered in New Zealand on 5/12/95 and is ex N2132M/JA5261/N406JA and G-BEXB. It wears the old Mountain Air colours.
Next in line was ZK-PIY (c/n 344) in Fly My Sky colours, also owned by Commercial Helicopters Ltd of Taumaranui. This is ex JA5218/G-BBOY and was first registered in New Zealand on 12/11/96.
And the final North Islander parked up at Mangere was ZK-FVD (c/n 316) in the current Great Barrier Airlines colour scheme. This is owned by Great Barrier Airlines and was first registered on 5/12/89. It has had a long overseas history as it is ex G-BJWN/4X-AYL (Israel)/SX-BFG (Greece)/4X-AYL/SX-BFC/4X-AYL and G-BALO.
And finally a little sister of the North Islanders was parked up, in the form of Partenavia P 68B (c/n 086), first registered in New Zealand way back in 1/84 and owned by Great Barrier Airlines. It is ex A6-ALO (United Arab Emirates) and G-BEJX.

I can only conclude that there is an awful lot of flying going on between Auckland and Great Barrier Island!

Croatia Airlines dumps Rijeka

Croatia Airlines - a distant memory for Rijeka
Rijeka Airport has not had a good start to the year. The airport has lost most of its funding and is now loosing a customer. Croatia Airlines will terminate its only service from the airport - seasonal summer flights to London. In a statement, the airline explains its decision, “Due to business rationalisation and the restructuring of our timetable, Croatia Airlines will terminate flights from Rijeka to London during the summer of 2010. One of the reasons for such action is the low profitability of these flights”. The airline also states that it has no plans to introduce any new services from Rijeka and will therefore completely withdraw from the airport.

Rijeka Airport is also fighting a battle not to loose its status as an international airport. The director of the airport, Mladen Pasarić, believes that the airport will be hit hard by Croatia Airlines’ decision. “I believe that the termination of this service, which catered for our diaspora in the United States, is damaging, especially since tickets were selling well. For us, the damage is even greater. It’s not the same when the national carrier reduces frequencies rather than when it completely withdraws from your airport. Honestly, we thought that frequencies on this service would be increased due to high interest”, Pasarić said.

For the 2010 summer season, Croatia Airlines will be decreasing frequencies from some Croatian airports.

Sebring Day Three: To The Max

Evektor USA's main man Jim Lee took me up for an enjoyable float above the clouds today in the SportStar Max, the top-line evolution of the SportStar which won the first ASTM SLSA designation back at the beginning of the category.
Above the line of scud clouds murking things up below 2500' or so, we cruised around for awhile in smooth air, doing some stalls, playing with the TruTrak EFIS, enjoying the solid, easy handling of the bird, and talking about the simple joy of flying as we gazed down upon the beautiful green earth.
I'll be writing up my review of the Max for an upcoming issue. Meanwhile, more eye candy.
(That's Jim standing by the airplane).
Attendance for the show seemed pretty good today, although no official numbers yet.

Sebring Day Three: Fog, Sun, Wind, Clouds

The day started at 6 with a drive up to the airport in the fog. I sat with Jim Koepnick and friends, waiting for the fog to lift for our 7 a.m. shoot with the PiperSport.
Never happened.
Jim's the long-time head of EAA's photo department: if you've seen some of the zillions of gorgeous photos filling their publications over the last couple decades or so, you've seen his top-notch work.
Jim and EAA editor Mary Jones were gracious enough to offer me a seat in their Cessna 210 photo ship, and we'll try again tomorrow morning.
The sun finally broke out, bringing the wind and puffy scud clouds.
Piper's long-time unsung hero Bart Jones, with whom I've flown countless photo missions over the years (along with P&P's veteran Senior Ed. Bill Cox), took me up for a demo flight in the lovely new PiperSport.
What a treat!
We're running the story in the next issue but here's a couple highlights:
* a delight to fly
* beautifully appointed inside and out
* lands like a dream.
* Excellent toe-brake pedal plates make castering nosewheel system easily controllable.
* Hops off the ground and lands at very low speeds.



Rocket propulsion systems can be classified according to the type of energy source (chemical, nuclear, or solar), the basic function (booster stage, sustainer, attitude control, orbit station keeping, etc.), the type of vehicle (aircraft, missile, assisted take-off, space vehicle, etc.), size, type of propellant, type of construction, or number of rocket propulsion units used in a given vehicle. Each is treated in more detail in subsequent chapters.Another way is to Classify by the method of producing thrust. A thermodynamic expansion of a gas is used in the majority of practical rocket propulsion concepts. The internal energy of the gas is converted into the kinetic
energy of the exhaust flow and the thrust is produced by the gas pressure on the surfaces exposed to the gas, as will be explained later.

rocket propulsion


Propulsion in a broad sense is the act of changing the motion of a body. Propulsion mechanisms provide a force that moves bodies that are initially at rest, changes a velocity, or overcomes retarding forces when a body is propelled through a medium. Jet propulsion is a means of locomotion whereby a reaction force is imparted to a device by the momentum of ejected matter. Rocket propulsion is a class of jet propulsion that produces thrust by ejecting stored matter, called the propellant. Duct propulsion is a class of jet propulsion and includes turbojets and ramjets; these engines are also commonly called airbreathing engines. Duct propulsion devices utilize mostly the surrounding medium as the "working fluid", together with some stored fuel. Combinations of rockets and duct propulsion devices are attractive for some
applications and are described in this chapter. The energy source most useful to rocket propulsion is chemical combustion. Energy can also be supplied by solar radiation and, in the past, also by nuclear reaction. Accordingly, the various propulsion devices can be divided
into chemical propulsion, nuclear propulsion, and solar propulsion. lists many of the important propulsion concepts according to their energy source and type of propellant or working fluid. Radiation energy can originate from sources other than the sun, and theoretically can cover the transmission of energy by microwave and laser beams, electromagnetic waves, and
electrons, protons, and other particle beams from a transmitter to a flying receiver. Nuclear energy is associated with the transformations of atomic particles within the nucleus of atoms and can be of several types, namely,fission, fusion, and decay of radioactive species. Other energy sources, both internal (in the vehicle) and external, can be considered.


Around 350 BC,the planets for over two thousand years! Aristotle was of the opinion that all the heavenly bodies, including the sun, the wanderers (planets), and the stars, were in circular motion about a (planets), and the stars, were in circular motion about a fixed and unmoving
Earth. So authoritative was Aristotle that the Catholic church later accepted this view as its official doctrine on the matter and used its religious influence to enforce this position. As a direct result, Galileo was arrested for espousing views to the contrary in 1600 A.D.! However, a century before Galileo, the first serious questioning of Aristotle’s views ad already begun.
Astronomy (or rather astrology) was very popular at the time of Copernicus,around 1500 A.D., and the inability to accurately describe the motions of the heavenly bodies increased efforts to find a better explanation than Aristotle’s. Copernicus was both an astronomer and mathematician, and he used the observed angular positions of the planets and rigonometry to correctly place the solar system in its proper order, with the sun at the center and the earth as just another wanderer in motion about the sun like the other planets. However, the idea of a moving earth and similarity with the other planets was quite radical at the time and made his heliocentric (sun-centered) hypothesis hard to accept.For instance, Tycho Brahe, the late sixteenth-century astronomer, completely rejected the notion. Tycho, in the years prior to his death in 1601, conducted the most exhaustive and accurate recording of the movements of the planets to date. He was sure that his data held the secret to the mystery of planetary movements, but his mathematical ability was too poor to check out his theories. Therefore, Tycho solicited the assistance of mathematicianslike Johannes Kepler.after Tycho’s death, Kepler came into possession of most of the observational records kept over the many years. Kepler believed in the Coperni- 26


The feasibility of single-stage-suborbital (SSSO), single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO), and two-stage-to-orbit (TSTO) rocket-powered spacecraft is investigated using optimal control theory. Ascent trajectories are optimized for different combinations of spacecraft structural factor and engine specific impulse, the optimization criterion being the maximum payload weight. Normalized payload weights are computed and used to assess feasibility. the results show that SSSO feasibility does not necessarily imply SSTO feasibility: while SSSO feasibility is guaranteed for all the parameter combinations considered, SSTO feasibility is guaranteed for only certain parameter combinations, which might be beyond the present state of the art. On the other hand, not only TSTO feasibility is guaranteed for all the parameter combinations considered, but a TSTO spacecraft is considerably superior to a SSTO spacecraft in terms of payload weight.Three areas of potential improvements are discussed:

(i) use of lighter materials (lower structural factor) has a significant effect on payload weight and feasibility;

(ii) use of engines with higher ratio of thrust to propellant weight flow

universal space vheical design concept

Theoretical and experimental estimations are given on the structure of a universal space interceptor designed on the modular principle. The interceptor comprising one command-impact module and a variable number of separable impact modules, each with propulsion and guidance systems, can be injected into a trajectory towards an Earth approaching space object by launch vehicles MOLNIYA, PROTON, TITAN-4, ARIANE-5, N-2, and ANGARA. The universal space interceptor is capable to attack Earth approaching asteroids and comets of up to 300 m in diameter and destroy them into a number of safe fragments. In this case objects with a diameter of up to 100-150 m are destroyed by non-nuclear kinetic module and to attack larger objects it is required to use a nuclear explosive device.


On detection of an Earth approaching DSO ground data support facilities (first optical then radio telescopes) determine (adjust) its flight trajectory, size and class. In terms of the DSO-Earth impact point predicted and possible after-effects the necessity of DSO interception is determined and the DSO interception point and USI completeness are specified. After this the launch complex, launch vehicle, post boost stage and USI prelaunch preparation is performed, LV is launched and USI is injected into a trajectory to the USI-DSO impact point. The prelaunch procedures duration is minimized since the interception complex is kept on the alert. During USI independent radio-controlled flight the necessary USI trajectory adjustment is made. On DSO detection with USI on-board equipment the USI flight trajectory is adjusted (about 1000 s before impact). Impact modules are separated one-by-one (within every 100 s) and deployed as a sequence of modules at intervals of about 25 km. The command-impact module is behind the “chain” of impact modules.
On the basis of DSO final inspection with CIM on-board facilities the most appropriate KSP-DSO surface impact points are specified. At 7 000 - 10 000 km from DSO the impact modules self-guidance onto the points specified is performed. On the basis of IM-DSO impact monitoring and prediction of its own DSO impact accuracy the command-impact module generates a message on the successful DSO interception.Ground monitoring facilities confirm DSO disintegration into fragments and estimate the trajectories of the largest ones to make it possible to qualify the DSO material, structure and mechanical properties (predetermined by the remote monitoring data).


1. By the analysis of the possible frequency of various-size space objects falls on
the Earth there are distinguished objects of 20-300 m in diameter the probability of
USI completeness USI-6 USI-5 USI-3 USI-1 USI-N
Number of IM 5 4 2 -
USI mass, kg 10054 8304 4891 1590 2757
USI length, m 10.05 8.5 5.4 2.3
USI diameter, m 3.0 1.8
KSP set mass, kg 7250 5950 3350 750
NED mass, kg - 1127
DSO intercepted diameter, m 40-150 20-70 100-300

Note: Mass and dimension data are given for USI without adapter, aerodynamic fairing
and safety support system.collision with which is relatively high (several collisions during 20 years are possible), but which cannot be predetected with present-day monitoring facilities.
Such DSO may be intercepted at an altitude within 100 000 km with either a set of kinetic star-shaped penetrators (DSO diameter within 100-150 m) or a nuclear explosive device. In this case the interception complex must be always kept in operational conditions (prelaunch preparation lasts for about 1-2 days after DSO is detected).

2. A concept of a universal space interceptor designed on the modular principle is proposed. The universal space interceptor comprises a command-impact module and a variable number (from 0 to 5) of impact modules. Each module is provided with a kinetic star-shaped penetrator and DSO guidance system. In this case DSO long-range detection and final inspection, determination of appropriate DSO surface impact point, USI trajectory adjustment (in independent flight), USI
separation to modules, module-to-DSO approach arrangement required and USIground services communication is supported with the command-impact module systems.

3. The characteristics of present-day launch vehicles of different payload capacity (MOLNIYA, ZENIT, PROTON, ANGARA, et al.) and space monitoring facilities are sufficient to provide USI efficient application.

4. In the course of the universal space interceptor development the basic issues which arise during creation and operation of a dangerous space object protection system will be theoretically substantiated and tested.

Under the open sky

More flights to Serbia
The Secretary General of the Association of European Airlines , Ulrich Schulte-Strathaus, met with the Serb minister for Infrastructure on January 15 to discuss the outcomes of the liberalisation of Serbia’s aviation policy. "In the past weeks, the Serbian Government implemented a number of measures designed to facilitate travel; these include a visa waiver programme for EU citizens, coined the ‘White Schengen’, and a unilateral suspension of traffic right restrictions between Serbia and EU countries. In the first month since the implementation of these measures, traffic has soared between Serbia and EU countries by 20%, despite the general economic downturn", the AEA informed. Mr Schulte-Strathaus also met the Serbian Transport minister, Mr. Mrkonjić, thanking him on behalf of the AEA for this market oriented policy, which he credited the minister for having initiated. “This is good news for the consumer, the industry and the economic perspectives of this region”, The AEA Secretary General said. “It requires political courage to liberalise markets in times of economic turmoil, I must say, we are impressed by the action taken by the minister to promote competition in our sector”.

Schulte-Strathaus said the entire region would stand to benefit from this market oriented approach and welcomed a conference, to be hosted by the Serbian Government at the end of February entitled “Open Sky over the territory of Serbia after the abolition of the visa regime“. Mr Schulte-Strathaus also met with the CEO of Jat Airways, Mr. Radovanović . “Jat Airways is one of the longest serving members of our association”, he said. “With this policy, Jat Airways positions itself in a region with high potential for sustainable growth. We look forward to a close cooperation with Jat Airways on how the interests of the consumers in this region can be best secured”.

The following airlines have recently commenced or announced plans of beginning new flights to Serbian airports:

AirlineDestinationFrequencyStart date
TAROMBucharest3 p/w07.12.2009
MALEVBudapest7 p/w (11 p/w from April 2010)14.12.2009
Wind JetForli (from Niš)1 p/w26.12.2009
Aegean AirlinesAthens7 p/w01.01.2010
NikiVienna7 p/w01.02.2010
Montenegro AirlinesPodgorica (from Niš)2 p/wFebruary 2010
Adria AirwaysLjubljana6 p/w01.03.2010
airBalticRiga4 p/w05.05.2010

Adria moving to Maribor

Maribor Airport passenger terminal
Due to runway renovation which will be carried out between April 7 and 21, 2010, Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport will be closed to all traffic. During the closure Adria Airways flights will be operated from Maribor Airport, located in Slovenia‘s North East. Free coach transfer will be arranged for passengers from Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport to Maribor Edvard Rusjan Airport. Coach transfers are planned approximately 3 hours before estimated departure times. During Ljubljana Airport’s closure parking for passengers will be free of charge.

Due to Ljubljana’s closure some flights in the Adria network will be cancelled. Other airline’s will also have to relocate flights, although most will cancel their services. You can read more about Ljubljana’s runway upgrade here. It will be an odd sight at Miarbior as the airport is not served by any airline.

Sebring Day Three:

Scott Severen of Indus Aviation took me through a bunch of upgrades to its T211 Thorpedo -- the first U.S. SLSA to earn ASTM certification.
Among the numerous enhancements include:
* curved glare shield
* numerous instrument panel changes including a stall warning light and horn
* digital compass
* GA-style circuit breakers
* cabin heater
that "actually works!" says Scott.
* removed side panels to give more effective cockpit room

A locking canopy has been added, as well as lumbar-contoured seats which have 3" more supine inclination, a contoured stick with a palm rest and adjustable headrests. I sat in the Thorpedo and found it very comfortable.
The IFR-equipped (for training) Thorpedo is meant as a flight school airplane.
Dang nice paint job too!

Sebring Day Three: Sportster Nears Market

Anyone familiar with the Jess Anglin Spacewalker homebuilt from the 1980s will see its genetic pedigree in the new low-wing Sporster that's been a kit airplane for some time and is undergoing ASTM development, to be offered before long as an SLSA.
For now (I need some sleep) here some eye candy to whet your appetite.

Tivat Airport in 2009

Tivat Airport passenger terminal
Montenegro’s second international airport, Tivat, saw passenger numbers decline by 7% in 2009. As a result, a total of 532.156 passengers were handled, down from 570.636 in 2008. A total of 4.226 aircraft operations took place at the airport, decreasing by 9% compared to the year before. The declining passenger numbers are blamed on the global financial crisis. In total, Montenegro’s 2 airports, Podgorica and Tivat, handled 982.456 passengers in 2009, compared to 1.109.113 in 2008. Notably, passenger figures significantly increased in December of 2009, compared to 2008, thanks to the abolishment of EU visa restrictions for Montenegrin citizens.

In 2009, Tivat Airport undertook an important project – the expansion of the aircraft parking platforms which now allows for aircraft such as the Boeing B737 and Airbus A320 to safely park. The investment was worth 2.5 million Euros.

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