Plan Your Weekend……...Forthcoming Events……..Aviation News

Worldwide Incidents and Accidents……This Week in Aviation History

Notice Board

8-13: World ANR Championships - Santa Cruz Portugal - Contact Hans Schwebel e-mail: hans.s@britsgranite.co.za cell: 082 656 3005

14: SAPFA Grand Central Fun Rally - Grand Central Airport. Contact Rob Jonkers cell: 082 804 7032 e-mail: rob@aerosud.co.za

14: Vans Fly in to Kitty Hawk. Contact Frank van Heerden e-mail: frankvh@sandown.co.za. website: www.fakt.co.za

14: The annual TAF breakfast fly-in. Our breakfast fly-in will be held rain or shine at Tedderfield Airpark, 23 Nettleton Road, Eikenhof (FATA). Contact sales@airplanefactory.co.za

19: Oudshoorn Cango RC Scale Flying Club Event. Contact

20-23: Model Gliding Association of SA Nationals. For more information 1jansime@gmail.com

21-22: PMS South Africa is proud to present the South African Nationals 2019 plastic model competition hosted by IPMS Cape Peninsula. This is the premier event on the South African scale modelling calendar and promises to attract the cream of the crop in scale plastic modelling.

24: Puma Energy Rhino Park Fly-in. Contact Juan at

28: Witbank Spring Bash Fly-in. Wareberry Lodge, Hazyview. Camping and more. Contact Marcia 082 892 5954

29: Barnstormers Radio Model Warbirds Airshow. For more information go to www.barnstormersmfc.com

28: Wings & Wheels Matjhabeng Welkom airport. For more information contact Ian Buchanan 083 388 1678 or Dirk Smit 082 558 3914

5-6: Western Cape Regional Aerobatics Swellengrebel, Swellendam. Contact Annie Boone at

19: SA Landing Championships - Brits Airfield - Contact Ron Stirk e-mail: melron@mweb.co.za cell:082 445 0373

26: SAPFA Baragwanath Fun Rally - Baragwanath Airfield. Contact Frank Eckard cell: 083 269 1516 e-mail:

26: SAAMA RC Model Helicopter Heli Fun, Bloemfontein. For more info go to www.reynekepark.co.za

2: SAPFA Rally Championships - Stellenbosch airfield. Contact Frank Eckard cell: 083 269 1516 e-mail: frank.eckard@mweb.co.za

8-10: EAA Sun n Fun Brits Airfield. Contact Marie Reddy 083 259 7691

9: EAA Sun & Fun Adventure Rally - Contact Rob Jonkers e-mail: rob@aerosud.co.za cell: 082 804 7032

22: World Canopy Piloting Championships Wonderboom South Africa.

23: SAPFA Springs Speed Rally - Springs Airfield. Contact Jonty Esser cell: 082 855 9435 e-mail: jonty@promptroofing.co.za

30 to 1 December: SAC Ace of Base Vereeniging Airfield. Contact Annie Boon e-mail: chunge@mweb.co.za


CubCrafters is upgrading its industry leading personal adventure aircraft, the XCub, with a new firewall forward package, including a much more powerful engine and propeller combination developed in cooperation with key industry partners. Photo © CubCrafters.

FAA certified in 2016, the XCub is lighter, stronger, and faster than any aircraft in its category. Combined with a larger payload and greater range, these attributes fulfill a wider mission profile than any other comparative aircraft in this class. The new firewall forward package being offered expands the capabilities of CubCrafters' flagship aircraft even more.

Dubbed the CC393i, the new lightweight fuel injected engine develops more than 215 HP, but adds only 10 pounds to the aircraft's overall empty weight when compared to similar legacy fuel injected 180 HP engine options. Developed as part of a growing collaboration between CubCrafters and Lycoming, the new CC393i engine is only available from CubCrafters and offered exclusively on the XCub.

"The opportunity to work together with Lycoming to develop this new, high-power and lightweight engine for the XCub has been truly inspiring. The CC393i, with its advances in technology and materials, absolutely delivers on the high performing adventure that we are dedicated to bring to our customers," shared Patrick Horgan, CubCrafters president.


"The Sonaca 200 aircraft's robust construction, low operating cost and outstanding performance for flight training have played an important role in purchasing" declared Captain Pilot Salim Onur, AYJET Chief Flight Instructor.
Photo ©Sonaca Aircraft.

AYJET, an approved Training Organization and a flight school based in Istanbul (Turkey), has selected the new Sonaca two-seater single-engine aircraft. In consideration of the increasing demand and collaboration with airline companies for pilot training, AYJET has decided to enlarge its fleet and after a rigorous search AYJET has chosen Sonaca Aircraft. Sonaca Aircraft's high experience and well-equipped aircraft have been decisive in AYJET's desire to work with them..

"The Sonaca 200 aircraft's robust construction, low operating cost and outstanding performance for flight training have played an important role in purchasing" declared Captain Pilot Salim Onur, AYJET Chief Flight Instructor.

AYJET has decided to purchase 6 Sonaca 200 aircraft in order to enlarge its aircraft fleet. AYJET plans to enlarge its fleet with Sonaca planes and globally develop this new partnership in the future.


328 Support Services GmbH (328SSG) today announced the formation of a new aircraft original equipment manufacturer, DRA GmbH, founded on the proud heritage of Dornier and Germany's reputation for engineering design, quality and innovation. Photo 328 Support Services.

328SSG, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC), is the Type Certificate holder of the Dornier 328 aircraft. Representatives of 328SSG, SNC, and the German Federal & State of Saxony ministries, today signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish DRA GmbH's final assembly line for the D328NEU® aircraft, a derivative of the Dornier 328, at Leipzig/Halle Airport, in the State of Saxony. The project anticipates creation of up to 250 new jobs at the production facilities in Leipzig, and an additional 100+ jobs at 328SSG's HQ in Oberpfaffenhofen, near Munich.

"Germany's return to the design and building of a Part 25 category commercial aircraft is long overdue and the new operation intends to create an aviation legacy founded on the heritage of aircraft pioneers," commented Dave Jackson, managing director of 328SSG. "The expansion of our locations in Germany and the formation of DRA GmbH, a new dedicated OEM, will enable us to manage future developments of the D328NEU aircraft and exploit future technologies and capabilities to produce a more efficient, economic and environmentally friendly aircraft."

The upgraded D328NEU will aim at offering a suitable replacement solution for ageing "in service "aircraft in the aviation market, as well as supporting the growing global market demand of new route development.

We are proud of the confidence of the German government in supporting the programme, and recognise the continuing support of our owners, employees and business partners.

Further updates on the programme will be announced late quarter one of 2020.


The days preceeding EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2019 yielded record rainfalls, bringing back nightmares of "Sloshkosh" back in 2010. Arrivals were shut-down for anyone that didn't have guaranteed hard-surface parking, and many aircraft parking areas and camp sites at AirVenture were closed days into the show. Beautiful, mild weather arrived in-time for the Sonex Aircraft Open House and Homecoming Fly-In, however, and Oshkosh 2019 turned into a great show! Photo © Sonex.

The Sunday Open house included only a few customer aircraft due to the arrival restrictions, but well-over 200 current & prospective builders turned-up at Sonex Factory Headquarters throughout the event. The Sonex Open House is always great opportunity for current and prospective builders too network, meet Sonex staff, and tour the Sonex factory.

During the Open House, Sonex Aircraft announced that Kit Reservation Deposits are now being accepted for the 2-place SubSonex JSX-2T! The new jet design attracted much interest throughout the week of AirVenture, and several deposits have been submitted. Stay tuned as future progress updates of the JSX-2T project will be coming soon!

In other SubSonex news, Kitplanes Magazine Editor at Large Paul Dye brought his beautiful SubSonex Personal Jet to Oshkosh, flying it all-the-way from his home in Carson Nevada - by far the longest cross-country trip ever flown in the SubSonex. Of course, the flight was not non-stop! Dye's jet, named "Loki" by Paul and his wife, was displayed in the the Homebuilders Hangar throughout the week, and was featured in a Homebuilts in Review presentation on Friday. At the end of the week, "Loki" was awarded a plaque for Outstanding Workmanship by the AirVenture aircraft judging committee. Congratulations to Paul!

In addition to Paul's jet many other Sonex Aircraft builders flew-in with their aircraft, displaying them both in the homebuilt aircraft parking area and in the homebuilt aircraft camping area, where "Camp Sonex" continues to grow each year.


Airbus Helicopters has delivered its 1,000th Super Puma helicopter: a twin-engine multi-role H215 assembled in Marignane, France, and handed over to the German Federal Police (Bundespolizei) to support the German Havarie Command, which manages maritime emergencies off of Germany's coast. Photo © Airbus.

This delivery completes the German Federal Police's order for four H215s, the first three of which were delivered in December 2018, and increases the German Federal Police's Super Puma fleet to 23, including 19 AS332 L1s, making the police force one of the largest operators of Super Pumas in the world today.

"The Super Puma family of civil and military helicopters has consistently performed well thanks to its ability to appeal to many different mission segments, whether you're fighting fires, building power lines, transporting troops, or saving lives in extreme environments," said Bruno Even, CEO of Airbus Helicopters. "Thanks to our close partnerships with long-standing customers like the German Federal Police, who we are honoured will operate our 1000th Super Puma, we are able to continuously improve so that this important product continues to meet the evolving market needs for decades to come."

Today, the Super Puma is operated by nearly 100 customers in 59 countries representing all regions of the world. The Super Puma family is composed of the H215 and H225 for the civil market, produced by Airbus Helicopters for law enforcement, aerial work, search and rescue, offshore transport and governmental missions, and appreciated for their versatility and ability to operate in extreme environmental conditions. In the military sector, Airbus Helicopters offers the H215M and H225M for search and rescue, troop transport, special ops and utility missions, among others.


Airbus Helicopters is offering a cost-effective approach for taking the Tiger platform beyond 2040, in response to the Commonwealth of Australia's (CoA) Request for Information (RFI) for the Project LAND4503 Armed Reconnaissance Capability. The RFI seeks solutions for the army's future armed reconnaissance helicopter needs. Photo © Airbus.

Airbus is the manufacturer of the tandem seat Tiger helicopters introduced to the Australian Army in 2004. Eighteen of the 22 units were assembled at the Airbus site in Brisbane, Australia. The fleet has been supported in Australia for more than 15 years.

The Airbus Helicopters proposal will offer the Australian Army and taxpayer with more than AUD3 billion in savings against the expected budget for LAND4503.

"Tiger is an extremely agile, effective, and digitally connected armed reconnaissance helicopter," said Andrew Mathewson, Airbus Australia Pacific Managing Director.

"Since delivery, the Australian Tiger has matured into a fully operational army capability, and is integrated into the combined arms team. It continues to prove itself as an adaptable platform, and is now a key element of Australia's amphibious capabilities on-board the Canberra Class Landing Helicopter Docks."

Cost per flight hour of the Australian Tiger has reduced by more than 30 per cent, and the sortie success rate is currently sitting at above 95 per cent. It is these measures that are acknowledged in Australia and internationally as unmatched, and place Tiger in a compelling position.

"Airbus proudly delivers a strong Australian industry capability, including more than 260 local staff supporting Tiger," Mathewson added.

The Tiger fleet has proven itself in diverse and extreme environments around the world with 120,000 flights hours logged by international operators, including more than 30,000 in Australia. It has provided support to counter insurgency operations in Mali, security operations in Afghanistan, and amphibious strike in Libya, operating reliably in the harsh extremes of heat and cold of the desert and in the maritime domain.

Globally, 181 Tigers have been delivered to Australia, France, Germany and Spain. First deployed by the French Army in Afghanistan in 2009, Tiger continues to demonstrate its essential role in theatres of operation as a highly versatile, stealthy, and manoeuvrable attack helicopter.


MD Helicopters, Inc. (MDHI) has announced the sale and delivery of a new MD 530F to International Defence & Aerospace Group, LLC (IDAG), a Pennsylvania-based authorized sales agent. The company's first MD 530F aircraft with a production all-glass cockpit, the custom-configured F-model will join an IDAG fleet of training aircraft operated by the Slovak Training Academy that also includes five MD 500E-model helicopters. Its primary role will be to support the tactical and night vision goggle (NVG) flight training needs of military and paramilitary helicopter pilots from around the world. Photo © MD Helicopters.

"We are excited about the sale of this MD 530F, and the opportunity to have military and paramilitary pilots from around the world train in the MD 530F," said Lynn Tilton, MD Helicopters, Inc. chief executive officer. "MD Helicopters and International Defence & Aerospace Group are aligned in our commitment to delivering excellence in product quality, support and training, and in our belief that the MD 500E and MD 530F airframes offer the best performance in their class for training, law enforcement and military operations."

An authorized MDHI sales agent for select Central and Eastern European opportunities since 2017, IDAG focuses on the sale and service of specialty rotorcraft solutions to military and paramilitary operators throughout Central and Eastern Europe. Global airborne law enforcement, military, and Special Forces operators worldwide also recognize IDAG for offering a comprehensive curriculum of transition and tactical flight training.

"We believe in the quality, proven performance and durability of MD Helicopters' aircraft," said Bob Caldwell, president and CEO of IDAG. "The MD 500-series helicopters are perfectly suited for training missions. They are incredibly robust, economical to operate, and have an unmatched safety record."

Powered by the Rolls-Royce 250-C30 650shp turbine engine, IDAG's right-hand command MD 530F is the first type-certified 369FF aircraft to be produced with the company's all-glass cockpit, and also features night vision imaging system (NVIS) cockpit lighting, extended landing gear, and a 21-gallon Fargo auxiliary fuel tank.

"The MD 530F is one of our most versatile airframes," Tilton said. "It is a proven performer with military and paramilitary operators worldwide, and delivers the overall performance, reliability and mission flexibility required by our growing global base of operators. We congratulate IDAG on this acquisition decision and look forward to the continued growth of their MD Helicopters fleet."

USA, Miami: An American Airlines mechanic has been arrested and charged with sabotaging an aircraft's navigation system in July. The flight with 150 on board was about to depart from Miami when an error message appeared after the engines were started up. The crew aborted take-off and returned to the gate. Passengers deplaned and American provided a different aircraft for the flight. The plane was taken out of service for maintenance. During the service it was found that a pitot tube, which connects to the aircraft data module was loose and blocked by a piece of foam. The mechanic who had previously worked on the aircraft admitted to law enforcement officials that he inserted a piece of foam into the inlet of the plane's air data module. He did that that because he was upset about stalled contract negotiations with the company and that the "dispute had affected him financially."

South Africa, O.R.Tambo International: Airports Company South Africa announced that it has lifted the suspension of SA Express after the airline made a "partial payment" of its R71m debt. The company's aircraft were grounded as it faced mounting financial and operational woes.

Philippines, Pansol, Calamba, Laguna: A Beechcraft B300 King Air 350 with nine on board crashed into a swimming pool of a resort when performing a medical evacuation flight. Video footage of the accident plane shows it descending at a significant bank angle while trailing smoke. There were no survivors.

USA, Minneapolis: A Delta Air Lines pilot has been formally charged with attempting to operate an aircraft under the influence of alcohol last month. Gabriel Schroeder was hit with two charges in relation to the incident - one count of attempting to operate an aircraft under the influence of alcohol, and another count of attempting to fly with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.04 percent of more. Schroeder was arrested at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport on 30 July on suspicion of being intoxicated ahead of a flight he was piloting to San Diego.

UK, South End Airport: A 49-year-old EasyJet female passenger who was drinking red wine from a cold drink bottle throughout the flight from Spain 45 minutes before the flight's at South End arrival began screaming and assaulting the crew. She punched one of the crew in the face then kicked another into the emergency door which she tried to open, forcing the pilot to make an emergency landing. The crew who had managed to restrain her held her until the flight landed at the U.K. airport, 20 minutes before time. Officers attended and arrested her on suspicion of assault occasioning actual bodily harm. She has been questioned and released on bail until 27 September.

Nanjing: A China Eastern Airlines Airbus A320-200N on a flight from Nanjing to Xiamen (China), was enroute about 170nm south of Nanjing when an open fire in the cabin caused by personal electronic device by a passenger prompted the crew to return to Nanjing. Cabin crew quickly extinguished the fire and secured the device. The aircraft returned to Nanjing for a safe landing about 65 minutes after departure.


The first pilotless radio-controlled aerial bomb was tested. It was actually a small aircraft that was designed to fly radio-guided for 50 miles (80 km) with 308 pounds (140 kg) of bombs aboard.

Photo © Michael Drape

Launched only 16 years after the Wright Brothers' pioneering Kitty Hawk flight, the first "automatic airplane", otherwise known as the "flying bomb" using Professor Archibald Low's radio control techniques, became the first pilotless winged aircraft in history.

Professor Low an eccentric scientist employed by the UK's Air Ministry put together a monoplane made of wood and tin, using the lower wing from a biplane and, scrounged from another aircraft, an oversized propeller driven by a 35 horse-power engine. There was one radio control for up and down, and another for left and right. Control was achieved using gyroscopes developed by Elmer Sperry of the Sperry Gyroscope Company.

Built during and shortly after World War I intended for use as "aerial torpedoes" an early version of today's cruise missiles the "flying bombs" were to have been used against Zeppelins.

During the test flight it shot into the air, looped the loop and crashed yards from the lorry that launched it via a pneumatic catapult.

Midweek Update

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