Midweek Update 23 FEBRUARY 2023

Compiled by Willie Bodenstein

Denel going big at IDEX.
SA Air Force leads with Op Chariot disaster relief in Limpopo.
SAAMDEC integral to SADI at IDEX.
Textron Aviation adds to growing list of options for Cessna Skycourier with introduction of new gravel kit.
Joby completes second stage of certification process.
VISTA X-62 advancing autonomy and changing the face of air power.
Serbian Prince Aviation choose Tecnam to update their training fleet.
Italian industry signs contract for next development phase of 6th generation air system.
Blade Air Mobility and BETA Technologies complete historic Electric Vertical Aircraft flight in New York.
Worldwide incidents and accidents - Australian Transport Safety Bureau Robinson R22 crash report.
This week in history - Death of Anne Morrow Lindbergh.

Bonus Video - Comco Ikarus Flight Movie

21 & 23
Air Cargo Africa exhibition and conference Emperor's Palace, Johannesburg. Contact Priyo Patra: priyopatra@statmediagroup.com Website:
www.aircargoafrica .aero

23 & 24
Public Safety and Security Drone Conference Emperors Palace Convention Centre. Contact Adelaide Maphosa E-mail: adelaide@africaaptraining.co.za

EAA Chapter 322 Young Eagles Venue TBA. Contact Neil Bowden E-mail: airadventuresa@gmail.com

25 & 26
SAC Western Cape Regionals venue TBA. Contact Annie Boon E-mail: chunge@mweb.co.za Cell 082 902 8614

3 to 5
Aero Club Airweek Middleburg airfield. Contact Sandra Strydom sandra@aeroclub.org.za Tel: 011 082 1100

EAA Saturday Breakfast / Gathering 07h30 Middleburg airfield. Contact Neil Bowden E-mail: airadventuresa@gmail.com

10 & 11
SAC Training Camp Kitty Hawk airfield. Contact Annie Boon E-mail: chunge@mweb.co.za Cell 082 902 8614

10 & 11
SAPFA Rally Nationals -Stellenbosch Airfied. Contact Leon Bouttell E-mail: Leon@lbaa.co.za Cell: 076 294 1363

24 & 25
SAPFA Rally Nationals - Brakpan Airfield. Contact Leon Bouttell e-mail: Leon@lbaa.co.za cell: 076 294 1363

EAA CHAPTER 322 breakfast fly-in Jack Taylor airfield, Krugersdorp. Contact Neil Bowden E-mail: airadventuresa@gmail.com

28 March to 2 April
SUN 'n FUN Aerospace Expo Lakeland Florida, USA. Website:
www.flysnf .org

EAA Chapter 322 breakfast gathering, boot sale and fly market EAA Auditorium. Contact Neil Bowden E-mail: airadventuresa@gmail.com

Volksrust breakfast fly-in. Contact Steven Prinsloo E-mail: steven@razzoaviation.co.za Cell: 084 317 2915 Johan Geldenhuys Cell: 082 861 3499 / Cell: Thinus Kemp 063 201 9952

1 & 2
SAC Training Camp Warmbaths / Bela-Bela airfield. Contact Annie Boon E-mail: chunge@mweb.co.za Cell 082 902 8614

EAA Chapter 322 breakfast fly-in to Brits airfield. Contact Neil Bowden E-mail: airadventuresa@gmail.com

Robertson annual fly-in and breakfast Robertson airfield. Contact Alwyn du Plessis E-mail: boeredata@breede.co.za

15 &16
SAC Eastern Cape Regionals Wings Park airfield. Contact Annie Boon E-mail: chunge@mweb.co.za Cell 082 902 8614
19 to 22

AERO Friedrichshafen Germany. Contact Tobias Brezel E-mail: tobias.bretzel@fairnamic.com Cell: +49 1752313422

Elders Flight Brakpan Airfield. Contact Felix Gosher E-mail: felixgosher@gnmail.com Cell: 086 191 4603

27 April to 1 May
EAA National Convention at Vryheid airfield. Contact Neil Bowden E-mail: airadventuresa@gmail.com


Denel maintains it's open for business and will use IDEX in the Abu Dhabi emirate of the UAE (United Arab Emirates) later this month to show it's back in the wake of a hiatus caused largely by grand corruption and an ensuing loss of income and operating capital.

Ahead of the 20 to 24 February exhibition, this year marking its 30th anniversary, interim Denel chief executive Mike Kgobe is upbeat.

“We want to demonstrate to the world Denel is open for business,” a Denel statement has him saying, adding: “the reputation of our products and services remains high among industry decision makers and analysts and will be reinforced in Abu Dhabi.

IDEX, the acronym for the UAE International Defence Exhibition and Conference, in Abu Dhabi is expected to attract more than 1 100 exhibitors from 50 countries. Notwithstanding COVID-19 limitations, the 2021 edition of IDEX drew sixty-two thousand plus visitors.

Kgobe sees Denel's presence as “meaningful and catalytic” with a focus on technology that built the State-owned defence and technology conglomerate's reputation prior to its hollowing out, subsequent retrenchments and restructuring.

Products including the Rooivalk combat support helicopter and the G6 artillery system are still global leaders and Denel is increasingly known for integrated network capabilities seen in the ground-based air defence system (GBADS).

Kgobe said Denel's participation will provide an opportunity to share the new Denel strategy and turnaround plan, supported by the shareholder (government) with key stakeholders. Denel is progressing with “bold streamlining steps and refocusing operations to build a sustainable business and return to profitability,” the statement has it, adding the Irene, Centurion headquartered SOE (State-owned enterprise) remains innovative with the ability to evolve and deliver world class products across the spectrum of aerospace, defence and related technologies - from land to sea, to air, to the cyber and security environments.

“IDEX has been the premier exhibition of its kind in the Middle East and Northern Africa region for more than 30 years,” Kgobe said, saying “this is a significant platform” for Denel.

Denel will use IDEX to “restore strong relationships” with customers and stakeholders, “leverage smart partnerships” and “reconfirm the Denel brand in the global defence technology environment”.

IDEX also offers Denel the opportunity to acquaint itself with new trends in technology and explore new market opportunities.

“Denel remains a valuable national asset. We are open for business and can leverage the superior quality of our product range and exceptional service. Our presence at IDEX 2023 will confirm this,” Kgobe concluded.

Other South African companies at IDEX 2023 include DCD Protected Mobility, Etion Create, Rheinmetall Denel Munition, Imperial Armour, Mega Control Systems, MOH-9 Armour Ceramics, Radel, RapidM, RationTech, Redeployable Camp Systems SA, Reutech, Rippel Effect, Shrike Marine, SME Exports, Unipro, Zabra Protection and industry representative body AMD.


Disaster relief in the wake of torrential rains and floods in seven of South Africa's nine provinces is the latest tasking to be added to the growing list of work assigned to the SA National Defence Force (SANDF).

Soldiers and according to SANDF Chief General Rudzani Maphwanya, engineers, are assisting Eskom with “rehabilitation” as part of the national state of disaster (SoD) declared around South Africa's ongoing electricity crisis. The second is humanitarian assistance in the ongoing La Niña weather phenomenon.

A rescue, conducted under the standing Operation Chariot tasking to provide humanitarian assistance during times of natural or other disasters, saw a SA Air Force (SAAF) medium transport helicopter in action over the Letaba River in the Tzaneen area of Limpopo this week.

The rotary-wing aircraft, on the strength of Air Force Base (FB) Swartkop unit, 17 Squadron, safely hoisted two “community residents” from an island in the raging river. They were reportedly stranded there for three days as the river flooded and burst its banks threatening farms, settlements and villages. They were delivered to Tzaneen Clinic and treated for “dehydration and related conditions” after the casevac, with ER24 paramedics assisting.

The Letaba river sortie, according to Brigadier General Andries Mahapa from the SANDF Directorate Corporate Communication (DCC), is standard for Operation Chariot. When the operation is active, it sees various SANDF components working in concert with government agencies and departments at national, provincial and local level as well as the private sector to alleviate disruptions caused by natural events, such as the current La Niña global weather phenomenon with its above normal rainfall.


The South African defence industries (SADI's) participation in next week's IDEX (International Defence Exhibition and Conference) in Abu Dhabi is important because countries in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region want “to reduce dependence on NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) countries”.

This is as per a South African Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (dtic) statement regarding South Africa's presence at and involvement in IDEX.

Nearly two dozen South African companies will be exhibiting at IDEX 2023, including 11 at the South African pavilion, facilitated by the dtic with the export specific arm of the South African defence industry representative body on “a mission to seek export opportunities” according to the dtic statement.

Also in the United Arab Emirates for IDEX is Denel, making a comeback to international marketing in the wake of COVID-19 and the damage wrought on the State-owned defence and technology conglomerate by grand corruption.

Sandile Ndlovu, chief executive officer of the SA Aerospace Maritime Defence Export Council (SAAMDEC) an SA Aerospace, Maritime and Defence Industries Association (AMD) entity, is part of the South African delegation to IDEX. In addition to heading the export council, Ndlovu is interim chief executive of AMD.

South Africa will be represented by a national pavilion, made possible by Minister Ebrahim Patel's department, which Ndlovu (according to the statement) will see “a best foot forward” approach representing the country and SADI.

Expanding on the move away from NATO, the statement has Ndlovu saying: “They [Middle Eastern countries] are diversifying in terms of importing defence products and moving away from procuring from America and Europe. South Africa stands to benefit from that diversification of import markets. Participating in IDEX provides us [South Africa] with an opportunity to strengthen our relationship with the Middle East”.

He is optimistic IDEX exposure will generate trade leads for the South African companies and see them starting or increasing exports.

“The objective of the initiative is to see South African companies entering contracts that will impact positively on the South African economy because their value chain is here, their components are made here and their workforce is here. If they come back with contracts, their workforce and value chain will benefit noticeably. The South African economy will benefit because of much-needed foreign currency the companies will earn and be injected into our economy,” the statement further has the SAAMDEC chief executive saying.

SAAMDEC was established in 2015 by AMD and the dtic. Membership comprises 70 companies manufacturing a variety of defence equipment, both defensive and offensive.

“The industry approached the dtic for assistance in 2015 after we realised the local market had been shrinking since 2005. This resulted in establishment of the council as we had to open new avenues and explore new opportunities to stay afloat. With the support of the dtic the industry became export focused and we managed to increase exports. Several international trade exhibitions and missions later we are exporting 80% of what the SADI produces today,” according to Ndlovu.


Textron Aviation announced it is now offering a gravel kit for its new twin-engine, large-utility Cessna SkyCourier turboprop that gives customers the flexibility to operate their aircraft in and out of unimproved runways around the world. First deliveries of the SkyCourier with the installed option will commence later this month.

The Cessna SkyCourier is designed and manufactured by Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company. The clean-sheet design aircraft achieved Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) type certification in March 2022 with first deliveries following just two months later.

“Cessna aircraft have been moving people and critically-needed goods in and out of remote areas for decades and this new capability allows SkyCourier customers to operate in some of the world's most demanding environments,” said Lannie O'Bannion, senior vice president of Sales and Flight Operations. “The addition of this new gravel kit greatly enhances the already rugged reliability of the SkyCourier.”

This additional option for the SkyCourier paves the way for further use in global markets by a variety of customers, including government agencies, law enforcement and militaries, air ambulance operators, freight haulers, corporations and humanitarian organizations.


Joby Aviation, Inc. (NYSE:JOBY), a California-based company developing all-electric aircraft, today announced it has completed the second of five stages required by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to certify its revolutionary electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft for commercial passenger use.

In the second stage of the type certification process, a company identifies the ways in which it will demonstrate it has met the regulatory intent of the safety rules (“Means of Compliance”) that were defined during the first stage of the process (“Certification Basis”).

Joby believes it is the first eVTOL company to reach this milestone, having also been the first eVTOL company to complete stage one and have its Certification Basis published in the Federal Register. Achieving this goal moves Joby one step closer to its target of launching commercial passenger service by 2025.

“Certification is an integral part of everything that an aerospace company does and with the achievement of this critical milestone, we're now able to confidently focus our efforts on closing the remaining certification plans and completing the testing required to certify our aircraft,” said Didier Papadopoulos, Head of Aircraft OEM at Joby.

“We're grateful for the FAA's dedication to the safe introduction of eVTOL technology and their commitment to supporting continued US leadership in this sector,” he added.

Joby has also already made substantial progress in the third stage of the certification process (“Certification Plans”), with four area-specific certification plans (ASCPs) submitted to the FAA as of November and the Company's first equipment-level qualification test plan submitted to the FAA, enabling for-credit qualification testing to proceed. Progress also continues in stage four (“Testing and Analysis”) and stage five (“Show and Verify”). Joby provided a summary of the five stages of type certification in its Q2 2022 Shareholder Letter.

It is typical for a small portion of the Means of Compliance to remain open to allow for further collaboration on minor design changes and improvements that may occur later in the certification process. With 94% of our Means of Compliance now accepted by the FAA, Joby considers the second stage essentially complete.


The Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) VISTA X-62A, a one-of-a-kind training aircraft, was flown by an artificial intelligence agent for more than 17 hours recently, representing the first time AI engaged on a tactical aircraft.

VISTA, short for Variable In-flight Simulation Test Aircraft, is changing the face of air power at the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School (USAF TPS) at Edwards Air Force Base in California.

VISTA is a one-of-a-kind training airplane developed by Lockheed Martin Skunk Works® in collaboration with Calspan Corporation for the USAF TPS. Built on open systems architecture, VISTA is fitted with software that allows it to mimic the performance characteristics of other aircraft.

"VISTA will allow us to parallelise the development and test of cutting-edge artificial intelligence techniques with new uncrewed vehicle designs," said Dr. M. Christopher Cotting, U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School director of research. "This approach, combined with focused testing on new vehicle systems as they are produced, will rapidly mature autonomy for uncrewed platforms and allow us to deliver tactically relevant capability to our warfighter."

Recent upgrades by the U.S. Air Force include an updated VISTA Simulation System (VSS) provided by Calspan, and Lockheed Martin's Model Following Algorithm (MFA), and System for Autonomous Control of the Simulation (SACS). The SACS and MFA systems integrated together provide new capabilities to the VISTA so it can be used to conduct the most advanced flight test experiments emphasizing autonomy and AI.

The 17-plus hour flight by an AI agent took place as part of a series of tests in December.

VISTA is a modified F-16D Block 30 Peace Marble Il aircraft upgraded with Block 40 avionics. Previously designated NF-16D, in June 2021 VISTA was recognized by the U.S. Air Force and deemed a national asset with a formal redesignation to VISTA X-62A.

This new mission system capability with VSS, MFA and SACS emphasize advancing autonomous aircraft algorithm development and integration. At the heart of SACS system is the Skunk Works Enterprise-wide Open Systems Architecture (E-OSA) which powers the Enterprise Mission Computer version 2 (EMC2) or "Einstein Box."

Additional SACS components include integration of advanced sensors, a Multi-Level Security solution, and a set of Getac tablet displays in both cockpits. These components enhance VISTA's capabilities while maintaining its rapid-prototyping advantage, specifically allowing for quick software changes to increase the frequency of flight test flights and accelerating the pace of AI and autonomy development to meet urgent national security needs.

For decades, Lockheed Martin has been applying and deploying trusted AI technologies to help its customers maximize performance, safety, and situational awareness across all domains. Lockheed Martin's implementations keep people in control while enabling them to be safer, more effective and better able to focus on higher-level tasks by empowering them to make more-informed decisions quickly.

VISTA will continue to serve an integral role in the rapid development of AI and autonomy capabilities for U.S. Air Force. It is currently undergoing a series of routine inspections. Flights will resume at Edwards Air Force Base throughout 2023.


Tecnam announced that delivery has commenced to Serbia based Prince Aviation, of two Tecnam P2008JC MkII and one P2006T MkII multi-engine aircraft.

By selecting Tecnam to renew its training fleet, Prince Aviation can now offer the highest standards in pilot training in the region of Western Balkans and South East Europe. Introduction of the Tecnam models will provide Prince Aviation's students state of the art aircraft that will support their flight training and education, giving them their first insight into the modern aviation world. Since 1992, Prince Aviation's flight training organization has trained more than 500 pilots, confirming to be the leading FTO in the region. By completing a Tecnam Maintenance Training Course, Prince will shortly become an Authorized Tecnam Service Center, providing certified support to their fleet and Tecnam customers in the area.

With its carbon-fibre fuselage, metal wings and stabilator, the Tecnam P2008JC MkII has a large number of advantages over traditional aircraft. The combination of both composite material and metal has resulted in a more fuel-efficient and much quieter aircraft which has become a favorite of many Flight Training Organizations.

The Tecnam P2008JC MkII features a number of significant enhancements: a new avionics suite and a new design of both the instrument panel and glare shield, enabling the introduction of Garmin's innovative G3X Touch display with a MD302 attitude instrument. VFR Night is optional.


The team of Italian companies that will participate in the development of the new Global Combat Air Programme (GCAP) have signed a contract to support the Italian Ministry of Defence in the programme's new concept & assessment phase and related demonstration activities.

The team, which comprises Leonardo - as a strategic partner - and Italy's leading companies in their respective domains: Elettronica, Avio Aero and MBDA Italia, will progress technology development in support of the GCAP "system of systems" concept, based on sixth-generation combat air platforms operating in multi-domain scenarios.

Industry will collaborate with universities, research centres, SMEs and start-ups, allowing for the exchange of knowledge and growth of skills at a national level, all in close partnership with the Italian Ministry of Defence. The Ministry will be responsible for defining operational needs and directing technological development, drawing on industry support.

Alessandro Profumo, Chief Executive Officer at Leonardo said: "This new phase is a crucial step in the process of identifying and making available the innovative technologies that will ensure our defence capabilities make the necessary generational, technological and operational leap forward, allowing our national enterprise to reach the highest level of excellence and strategic autonomy. As part of the GCAP programme, Italian companies will play a fundamental role in the future of the defence industry at a national and international level. This will take place in a framework of growth that strengthens the operational capacity of our Armed Forces while at the same time generating positive returns including technological, economic and social progress for the entire national ecosystem”.

In support of the GCAP programme, Italy has already earmarked 6 billion Euros for investment in research and development that will allow for the launch of technology development projects in areas of strategic interest. These will allow Italy's national industry to participate in the future development phases of the system-of-systems.

The development of a national collaborative work environment, a digital infrastructure underpinned by advanced security, will enable information, services and activities to be shared securely, supporting the subsequent implementation phases via a secure and classified virtual environment. The activation of projects which will deliver technological growth in areas of strategic interest will allow Italy's national industry to play a substantial role in the development of the system of systems. This activity will be vital in achieving an appropriate level of national sovereignty.

This initiative is also laying the groundwork for further international collaboration in the development of technologies relating to sixth-generation combat air platforms by enhancing Italy's national industrial competitiveness, its strategic autonomy and the academic and professional skills of current and future generations. In support of this goal, companies have already begun to invest in research, to activate collaborations with universities and to support technology incubators in the innovation sector by promoting the most promising ones nationally and internationally.


iframe width="760" height="409" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/WPbhZsvsK3Q" title="Going Viral: First Electric-Vertical Air Flight in NYC Area" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture; web-share" allowfullscreen>

Blade Air Mobility, Inc. (Nasdaq: BLDE, "Blade"), a technology-powered air mobility platform and BETA Technologies (“BETA”), an electric aerospace company developing EVA (also known as eVTOL) and supporting charging infrastructure, today announced the successful completion of a historic test flight of BETA's ALIA-250 EVA at the Westchester County Airport in White Plains, New York.

The flight marks the first test of a piloted EVA in the greater New York City area and is a significant milestone in the companies' continued partnership to bring safe, quiet, and sustainable air transportation to commuter and commercial customers.

"This is a historic moment for Blade, New York and the urban air mobility industry," said Rob Wiesenthal, Chief Executive Officer of Blade. "This demonstration is a big milestone in our transition from helicopters to electric vertical aircraft, and we are pleased that our partners at BETA have designed the right aircraft with the requisite range, capacity, and noise profile, for use in our key markets, including our home base of New York City. We are confident EVAs will be a game-changer both for our company and New York City's transportation system once certified by the FAA."

"Blade is flying passengers in key urban markets all over the world, and this flight is another step toward delivering our electric aircraft to support those operations,” said Kyle Clark, BETA's Founder and CEO. “We continue to progress our aircraft, flying real-life missions and gaining proficiency in the national airspace. We were glad to be able to fly here from our flight test facility in Plattsburgh to work with Blade to operationalize our partnership."

The ALIA-250 aircraft is powered by an all-electric propulsion system with vertical take-off and landing capability and a noise profile that is 1/10th the sound decibel level of conventional helicopters, making it ideal for use in urban areas. The aircraft can fly up to six people and features a sleek and modern design with a range of features to ensure the highest levels of safety and comfort.

During today's flight, the ALIA-250 flew alongside a conventional helicopter before pulling away for a second pass above the airport to highlight the dramatic noise reduction.

In April 2021, Blade announced an agreement to facilitate the purchase of up to 20 of BETA's first passenger-configured ALIA-250 aircraft by its network of operators. Blade intends to deploy these initial aircraft on routes between its network of dedicated terminals in the US. BETA has also agreed to provide and install charging infrastructure at certain key locations.

Over the past three years, BETA has demonstrated reliably strong performance with its two full-scale prototype aircraft, accomplishing significant milestones toward certification and commercialization. BETA also had test pilots from the U.S. Air Force and Army fly the ALIA-250 in full-pattern evaluations in March 2022 and July 2022, respectively, marking the branches' first-ever flight of an electric vertical aircraft and the industry's first manned qualitative evaluations. BETA has also partnered with the FAA and the National Institute for Aviation Research to conduct the first-ever 50-foot drop tests of its full-scale battery packs, successfully completing the test and advancing the industry's path to safety standards and certification.



A Robinson R22 helicopter collided with terrain when it likely encountered a downdraft with insufficient height to recover while unnecessarily flying at low level through the Northern Territory's MacDonnell Ranges in Australia, an Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) investigation has found.
ATSB director transport safety, Dr. Stuart Godley, said the investigation determined it was very likely the pilot was operating at low-level when the helicopter encountered a downdraft with insufficient height to recover.
The R22 had departed a cattle station's homestead's helipad to inspect bore sites and then assist with the recovery of a vehicle at Quartz Hill. After completing a bore inspection, the helicopter took-off and was levelled off at 150 feet above ground level, which was below the peaks of the surrounding terrain as it tracked into the MacDonnell Ranges to continue towards Quartz Hill.
Shortly after entering the MacDonnell Ranges, the R22 collided with the ground on a downslope, about 125 kilometres east of Alice Springs. The helicopter's last recorded data point indicated it was at about 142 feet above ground level with an estimated ground speed of about 79 knots. The pilot sustained fatal injuries and the passenger was seriously injured.
ATSB analysis of the helicopter's GPS data and other available evidence suggested the pilot was likely operating the helicopter at low level and possibly contour flying. For the prevailing winds, the helicopter's final track placed it on the lee side of higher ground. Bureau of Meteorology analysis indicated that broadscale moderate turbulence was especially likely at the time of the accident in the lee of the ranges and as a result of stronger upper winds mixing with lower winds.
ATSB director transport safety, Dr. Stuart Godley, said the investigation determined it was very likely the pilot was operating at low-level when the helicopter encountered a downdraft with insufficient height to recover, leading to the collision with terrain.
“When flying at low altitude there is a lower margin for error for obstacle avoidance. Even if a pilot has been trained and approved to conduct low-level operations it should be avoided when there is no operational need to do so,” Godley said.
The investigation also found a number of other factors that increased risk, including incomplete pre-flight planning, overloading, a forward centre-of-gravity and the pilot's elevated blood alcohol level.
“Examination of the pilot's iPad and iPhone found it was unlikely that flight planning data, such as meteorological information, had been accessed in the lead-up to the flight,” Godley said.
“Thorough pre-flight planning is essential for avoiding hazardous weather conditions. It is not only important to obtain the relevant weather information to develop a mental picture of the conditions that may be encountered, but also to assess and understand how it relates to the planned flight.”
The investigation report also notes that it was very likely that the helicopter was overweight on departure and its centre-of-gravity was beyond the forward limit for the entire flight.
“Weight and balance have the potential to influence aircraft handling characteristics, and so it is critical that the loading remains within the prescribed operating limits for the entire flight,” said Godley. “Otherwise, as the safety margin steadily erodes, even an experienced pilot may not be able to recover from a rapidly developing unsafe condition.”
The report also notes that alcohol was also present in the pilot's blood at a level capable of impairing performance. However, evidence of previous low flying suggested the pilot's actions may have been normal behaviour and not influenced by alcohol. Therefore, the investigation could not conclude that the pilot's elevated level of alcohol contributed to the accident, but considered that it increased the likelihood of risk-taking behaviour and mishandling the helicopter in an emergency.
“This accident is an important reminder that blood alcohol can persist the day after significant alcohol consumption, and the residual effects of alcohol may impair performance, especially in demanding situations,” added Godley.

South Africa, Knoppieslaagte, Gauteng: A Jihlavan Skyleader 600 crashed under unknown circumstances into a river in Knoppieslaagte, Gauteng. The pilot did not survive the accident.

Zimbabwe, Beatrice, SW of Harare: A Piper PA-31 Navajo, registration Z-DAL with five on board sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident in Beatrice, Zimbabwe. The circumstances of the accident are unknown. Photos from the scene show that the airplane came to the rest inverted in an open farm field. The main landing gear was in the down position, and it looks like the airplane dug into the mud. All the occupants survived.

USA, near Corning Municipal Airport, Corning, Tehama County, California: A kit-built sport aircraft sustained unreported damage subsequent to impact with an olive orchard near Corning Municipal Airport. The pilot was performing aerobatic manoeuvres when a wing sheared off during a steep dive. The sole pilot on board the “ultralight” was fatally injured.

USA, NE of Claxton Evans County Airport, Claxton, GA: A Piper PA-28-180 Cherokee D operated by Aero Davis LLC DBA Savannah Aviation was not damaged following a loss of engine power after the fuel selector was inadvertently turned off resulting in a subsequent forced landing in an open cow pasture northeast of Claxton Evans County Airport (KCWV), Claxton, Georgia. The instructor and student pilot were not injured. The airplane took off from the pasture and returned to Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport about 2 1/2 hours later.

Norway, Tromsø/Langnes Airport: A SAS Airbus A320-251N, was involved in an incident on approach to Tromsø/Langnes Airport (TOS). As the aircraft was approaching a thunder and snowstorm was present in the area around the airport, with associated strong and gusting winds. The first approach to runway 19 was abandoned. The aircraft positioned for a second approach and landed safely. Police and ambulances attended during the landed. Media reports suggested an engine had developed issued during the approach, but this was denied by SAS. The aircraft was still on the ground at TOS on February 14.

USA, Lakeway Airpark (3R9), Lakeway, TX: On 12 February 2023, about a Mooney Aircraft Corporation M20K Encore airplane on a personal flight sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident near Lakeway, Texas. The pilot sustained no injury.
The pilot reported that he had recently purchased the airplane and he was relocating the airplane to his home base at the Outlaw Field Airport (CKV), Clarksville, Tennessee. During the prefight inspection, the pilot did not observe any anomalies. He reported that the airplane had 57 gallons of fuel on board at take-off and the engine oil was at a sufficient level for flight operations.
A preliminary review of Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) data showed that the airplane departed from the Kestrel Airpark (1T7), Spring Branch, Texas and travelled to the northeast. The pilot reported that while in flight, the engine had a low manifold pressure reading and then the engine sustained a total loss of power. The ADS-B data showed that the airplane performed a 180° turn as it approached the Colorado River just to the north of Bee Cave, Texas. The pilot then maneuverer the airplane north toward the Lakeway Airpark (3R9), Lakeway, Texas.
The pilot performed a forced landing to a golf course just to the north of 3R9. During the forced landing sequence, the airplane impacted trees and a wood fence, and came to rest near commercial electrical power equipment. The airplane came to rest upright on the main landing gear, and the pilot was able to egress from the airplane without further incident. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage and to both wings.
The Federal Aviation Administration responded to the accident site to perform documentation work. A large amount of engine oil was observed trailing rearwards on the underside of the fuselage. The engine oil level was checked after the accident and oil was not observed on the dipstick. The airplane was equipped with a Continental Motors TSIO-360 reciprocating engine and a Hartzell metal 3-blade constant speed propeller.


Death of Anne Morrow Lindbergh, born Anne Spencer Morrow, pioneering American aviator, author, and spouse of fellow aviator Charles Lindbergh.

Anne Spencer Morrow Lindbergh born on 22 June 22 1906 was an American writer and aviator. She was the wife of decorated pioneer aviator Charles Lindbergh, with whom she made many exploratory flights.

Morrow and Lindbergh met on 21 December 1927 in Mexico City. Her father, Lindbergh's financial adviser at J. P. Morgan and Co., invited him to Mexico to advance good relations between it and the United States. They were married in a private ceremony on 27 May 1929 at the home of her parents in Englewood, New Jersey.

That year, Anne Lindbergh flew solo for the first time and in 1930, she became the first American woman to earn a first-class glider pilot's license. In the 1930s, both together explored and charted air routes between continents. The Lindbergh's were the first to fly from Africa to South America and explored polar air routes from North America to Asia and Europe.

After the war, she wrote books that helped the Lindbergh's rebuild the reputations which they had lost before World War II. The publication of Gift from the Sea in 1955 earned her place as "one of the leading advocates of the nascent environmental movement" and became a national bestseller.

After suffering a series of strokes that left her confused and disabled in the early 1990s, Anne continued to live in her home in Connecticut with the assistance of round-the-clock caregivers. During a visit to her daughter Reeve's family in 1999, she came down with pneumonia, after which she went to live near Reeve in a small home built on Reeve's Passumpsic, Vermont, farm, where Anne died in 2001 at 94, following another stroke.

Comco Ikarus Flight Movie

Aviation Economy
Midweek Update

Copyright © 2024 Pilot's Post PTY Ltd
The information, views and opinions by the authors contributing to Pilot’s Post are not necessarily those of the editor or other writers at Pilot’s Post.