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Pipe: Aviation

News and Updates - FAA to Airlines: E-cigs in Checked Bags are Fire Risk

Fri, 2015-01-23 14:58

January 23As the popularity of e-cigarettes increases, the FAA wants airlines to ensure passengers dont put their e-cigarettes in checked baggage, when they can pose a fire hazard in the cargo compartment.

The FAA today released a Safety Alert for Operators (SAFO) making U.S. air carriers aware of a recent bulletin from the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) that described several incidents associated with e-cigarettes, as well as ICAOs recommendation to ban the devices in checked baggage. ICAO is the arm of the United Nations that develops and disseminates suggested standards for the international aviation community.

In several incidents both inside and outside the transportation industry, e-cigarettes have overheated or caught fire when the heating element was accidentally activated. Last August, an e-cigarette in checked baggage stowed in an airliners cargo hold caused a fire that forced an evacuation of the aircraft. The danger may be increased when users modify and rebuild their reusable e-cigarette devices and interchange original and aftermarket batteries, heating elements, and vaporizing components.

The FAA SAFO recommends that operators follow the ICAO bulletin and require passengers to carry e-cigarettes and related devices solely in the aircraft cabin, where overheating or fire can be observed and handled more quickly. The agency encourages airlines to communicate this new policy to passengers as widely as possible through their websites, press releases, at ticket purchase, during the check-in process and by other established means to inform passengers about hazardous materials regulations and policies.

> View the FAA SAFO

> Get more information on the rules for passengers carrying hazardous materials in carry-on or checked baggage

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News and Updates - FAA Grants Two More UAS Exemptions

Fri, 2015-01-23 13:56

January 23-The Federal Aviation Administration continues to allow expanded commercial use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) operations by granting two more regulatory exemptions, bringing the total to 16 grants.

The agency gave new exemptions to AeroCine, LLC for aerial cinematography, and to Burnz Eye View, Inc. for aerial photography and inspections.

Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx found that the UAS in the proposed operations do not need an FAA-issued certificate of airworthiness because they do not pose a threat to national airspace users or national security. Those findings are permitted under Section 333 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.

In granting the exemptions, the FAA considered the planned operating environments and required certain conditions and limitations to assure the safe operation of these UAS in the National Airspace System. For example, operations require both a pilot and observer, the pilot must have at least an FAA Private Pilot certificate and a current medical certificate, and the UAS must remain within line of sight at all times.

To date, the FAA has received 295 requests for exemptions from commercial entities.

> View the FAAs exemption grants

>Get more information on the FAA and UAS

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United and JetBlue see value in a customer demand for environmentally sustainable holiday destinations

Fri, 2015-01-23 10:47
Fri 23 Jan 2015 - United Airlines has launched a new travel programme for customers looking to incorporate sustainability and environmental responsibility into their holiday requirements. The airline is partnering with The Mark Travel Corporation, its exclusive tour operator for United Vacations, and global non-profit Sustainable Travel International (STI) on the programme. United Eco-Skies Vacations will be piloted in Costa Rica, a country known for its eco-diversity and environmental stewardship, and if successful will be expanded to other eco-friendly destinations. Meanwhile, another US carrier, JetBlue, has carried out a study into the relationship between a tourist destination's ecosystems and the value that has to the airline in a purely business sense. Leisure travel to the Caribbean's pristine beaches and clear seas is key to JetBlue's business model but that could be impacted by large-scale environmental degradation, says the airline.
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Eurotunnel warning over MyFerryLink sale

Thu, 2015-01-22 09:44
Channel tunnel operator says it may have to dispose of bare assets
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Contract awarded for UAE pilot project that will use desert plants and seawater to produce jet biofuel

Wed, 2015-01-21 11:42
Wed 21 Jan 2015 - A consortium of aviation, biofuel and research interests have awarded a contract to construct the world's first bioenergy pilot project that will use desert land and seawater to produce sustainable aviation fuel in the United Arab Emirates. The project, which is expected to be operational by late summer, is based on research carried out at the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology into using coastal seawater to raise fish and shrimp for food, whose nutrient-rich wastewater then fertilises oil-rich halophyte plants that can be harvested for aviation biofuel production. The Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium (SBRC) was founded by Masdar, Etihad Airways, Boeing and Honeywell UOP, and later joined by aerospace companies Safran and GE.
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Annual savings of around one million tonnes of aviation CO2 steer NATS towards its 2020 emissions target

Wed, 2015-01-21 05:41
Wed 21 Jan 2015 - UK air traffic services company NATS has reported aviation-related CO2 reductions now amount to around one million tonnes each year as a result of improvements and efficiency gains introduced since 2006. Based on current prices, NATS claims to have saved airlines over £115 million ($174m) in fuel costs and achieved an average 4.3 per cent cut in CO2 per flight, which means it has exceeded its own interim target of a 4 per cent reduction by the end of 2014. The company says this has been accomplished as a result of changes to UK airspace that allow for more direct routes and improved vertical profiles, the use of more efficient procedures such as continuous climbs and descents by aircraft, and the introduction of new air traffic control technologies. However, reaching its longer term goal of a 10 per cent cut per flight by 2020 will be a tough challenge, admits NATS.
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LATAM partners with SCX to launch a corporate air travel carbon offsetting programme in Latin America

Fri, 2015-01-16 06:23
Fri 16 Jan 2015 - Latin American airline group LATAM has joined forces with SCX, the first private climate stock exchange in the Southern Hemisphere, to launch a programme dedicated to offsetting carbon emissions from corporate air travel. Commitments to reduce emissions from the 10 companies that have initially joined the programme, called Neutravel, account for over 17,000 tons of CO2 and in its first year, it is aiming to reach 50,000 tons - equivalent to the carbon captured in one year by planting more than 6 million native trees. Partner companies will neutralise emissions through investments in certified emission compensation projects in the region, together with accredited in-house reductions.
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Boeing and Embraer open joint research centre to aid sustainable aviation fuels development in Brazil

Thu, 2015-01-15 12:19
Thu 15 Jan 2015 - Following a collaboration agreement signed last year to jointly conduct and co-fund research into establishing an aviation biofuels industry in Brazil, Boeing and Embraer have opened a research centre in Sao Jose dos Campos. At the centre, the companies will coordinate and co-fund research with Brazilian universities and other institutions. This will focus on technologies that address gaps in creating a viable industry, such as feedstock production, techno-economic analysis, economic viability studies and processing technologies. Boeing's efforts in the project is led by Boeing Research & Technology-Brazil, one of six international advanced research centres. Embraer has been involved in several aviation biofuel initiatives, including test flights of an E-170 conducted with engine manufacturer GE under a broad range of conditions.
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Heathrow sets out blueprint for tackling aircraft noise as Qatar’s all-new Airbus A350 XWB makes its London debut

Thu, 2015-01-15 08:19
Thu 15 Jan 2015 - London's Heathrow Airport used an operational proving visit of Qatar Airways' first new Airbus A350 aircraft earlier this week to outline its 10-point plan to reduce aircraft noise impacts by this summer. The steps include the phasing out of the oldest and noisiest Chapter 3 aircraft serving the airport. Accounting for around one per cent of all aircraft using Heathrow, the airlines that operate them already pay ten times more than for the quietest aircraft and the airport operator is considering further increases in Chapter 3 landing charges. Other actions include campaigns to encourage better use of aircraft technology and operational procedures, bigger fines for noisy departures and reductions in late departures. During the A350 visit, a field trial was conducted of the new aircraft's noise levels on two approaches to the airport.
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Finnair and SAA first to reach the top level in IATA's airline environmental assessment programme

Tue, 2015-01-13 12:03
Tue 13 Jan 2015 - Finnair and South African Airways have become the first airlines to complete the highest level of IATA's environmental performance assessment programme. Stage 2 marks the implementation by the two airlines of all of the IATA Environmental Assessment (IEnvA) Standards, and each has identified and mitigated its significant environmental impacts alongside setting performance targets. This stage also certifies that an airline has developed processes for monitoring and reviewing performance against its environmental targets and objectives. IATA also reports Icelandair, Qatar Airways and SriLankan Airlines have now completed Stage 1 of the programme, which ensures an airline has established a foundation and framework for its environmental management system (EMS), and certifies an airline has identified and complied with its environmental legal requirements.
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Macquarie in talks to buy 100 aircraft

Fri, 2015-01-09 14:21
Australian group’s deal underlines investor appetite for booming Asia aviation market
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Macquarie in talks to buy 100 aircraft

Fri, 2015-01-09 14:21
Australian group’s deal underlines investor appetite for booming Asia aviation market
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Cross-border trial to reduce holding times over London for Heathrow-bound aircraft reaps fuel and CO2 benefits

Fri, 2015-01-09 12:47
Fri 9 Jan 2015 - Aircraft approaching London's Heathrow Airport spend an average of eight minutes circling in holdings stacks before their final descent that not only lead to delays but also extra fuel burn and CO2 emissions as well as noise impacts for communities underneath the stacks. A project led by NATS is aiming to cut average holding times by a quarter and the UK air traffic services provider reports that since April 2014 it has achieved reductions of up to a minute for those flights influenced by the trial. NATS says this has already saved airlines around £1 million ($1.5m) in fuel costs and 5,000 tonnes of CO2. The trial is being carried out as part of the UK-Ireland Functional Airspace Block (FAB) and in collaboration with FABEC and Heathrow Airport.
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Renewable jet fuels from Amyris and Gevo make advances on approvals and towards commercial supply

Thu, 2015-01-08 13:44
Thu 8 Jan 2015 - Brazil's fuel regulator ANP has approved the use of Amyris renewable jet fuel for commercial airline use in blends of up to 10 per cent. With the fuel being produced at the Amyris biorefinery at Brotas in south-eastern Brazil, this clears the way for its commercialisation in the country. The farnesane product, developed in partnership with French oil giant Total, is converted from sugarcane, which in time could be extended to other plant sugars. Meanwhile, fellow US biofuel company Gevo has announced a successful first supersonic test flight using a 50/50 blend of the company's alcohol-to-jet (ATJ) fuel. The US Navy flight was conducted on a F/A-18 Hornet and is a significant milestone leading to a military specification approval of the fuel that would allow for commercial supply to the US Navy and Marine Corps, said the company. ATJ fuel pathways are currently being evaluated for regulatory approval in commercial airline operations.
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A composite airplane fleet of the future could reduce aviation life-cycle carbon emissions by 15 per cent, finds study

Wed, 2015-01-07 11:39
Wed 7 Jan 2015 - A study by the universities of Sheffield, Cambridge and University College London (UCL) concludes that by 2050 a global fleet of composite airplanes could reduce aviation carbon emissions by between 14 and 15 per cent. The researchers say they are the first to carry out a comprehensive life-cycle assessment (LCA) of a composite commercial airliner and have extrapolated the results to the global fleet. Using publicly available information on the Boeing 787 and from the supply chain, the LCA covers manufacture, use and disposal. Compared to traditional - and heavier - aluminium planes, a composite plane creates up to 20 per cent fewer CO2 emissions. Meanwhile, other researchers at Cambridge, in association with Boeing, have successfully tested a single-seat aircraft with a parallel hybrid engine - the first ever to be able to recharge its batteries in flight.
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News and Updates - FAA Grants Real Estate, Agricultural UAS Exemptions

Tue, 2015-01-06 18:01

January 6- The Federal Aviation Administration today granted two regulatory exemptions for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) operations, including the first for real estate photography.

The agency gave the exemptions to Douglas Trudeau with Tierra Antigua Realty in Tucson, AZ, and Advanced Aviation Solutions in Spokane, WA. Before these exemption approvals, the FAA had granted 12 exemptions to 11 companies in a variety of industries.

Mr. Trudeaus exemption authorizes him to fly a Phantom 2 Vision + quadcopter to enhance academic community awareness and augment real estate listing videos. Advanced Aviation Solutions plans to use a fixed-wing eBee Ag UAS to make photographic measurements and perform crop scouting for precision agriculture.

Both applicants also must obtain a Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) that ensures the airspace for their proposed operations is safe, and that they have taken proper steps to see and avoid other aircraft. In addition, the COAs will mandate flight rules and timely reporting of any accident or incidents.

Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx found that the UAS in the proposed operations do not need an FAA-issued certificate of airworthiness because they do not pose a threat to national airspace users or national security. Those findings are permitted under Section 333 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.

In granting the exemptions, the FAA considered the planned operating environments and required certain conditions and limitations to assure the safe operation of these UAS in the National Airspace System. For example, operations require both a pilot and observer, the pilot must have at least an FAA Private Pilot certificate and a current medical certificate, and the UAS must remain within line of sight at all times.

As of today, the FAA has received 214 requests for exemptions from commercial entities.

> View the FAAs exemption grants

For more information on the FAA and UAS, vist our UAS website.

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News and Updates - Keeping The New York Airspace Corridors Clear

Tue, 2015-01-06 11:36

January 6The FAA has proposed a rule new rule to enhance current practices for landings and takeoffs during the busiest travel times at New York-area airports and make those practices permanent. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) is designed to maintain efficiency levels, better reflect accepted international practices, and promote fairness in airline competition.

This proposed rulemaking allows us to manage delays in this high-demand airspace and encourage competition at the same time, said FAA Administrator Michael P. Huerta.

A slot is a landing or takeoff assigned during a specific time of day to a designated carrier. Slot controls are currently in place at four U.S. airports. The proposed rule covers three of those airports: LaGuardia, John F. Kennedy and Newark Liberty. It does not affect current slot rules at Washington Ronald Reagan National Airport.

The proposed rule would establish hourly slot limits at current existing levels for assigned carriers between 6 a.m. and 10:59 p.m. and would add daily limits for the period between 6 a.m. and 9:59 p.m. The proposed rulemaking also would provide a system to ensure that carriers use each allocated slots at least 80 percent of the time or relinquish the slot.

In addition, the proposed rulemaking encourages airline competition by proposing five secondary market alternatives to allow selling, buying, trading, or leasing assigned slots. The rule also outlines proposed procedures to review slot transactions that involve potentially anti-competitive practices.

The FAA will accept public comment on the NPRM for 90 days after publication in the Federal Register.

> Fact Sheet outlining specifics of the NPRM, including the number of slots per airport, times of slots, and potential secondary market alternatives.

> Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM)

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International teams bolster AirAsia search

Fri, 2015-01-02 04:09
Experts from France’s civil aviation safety investigation agency join effort to find jet
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International teams bolster AirAsia search

Fri, 2015-01-02 04:09
Experts from France’s civil aviation safety investigation agency join effort to find jet
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2014 in Energy: Dire Warnings, Slow Progress, and a Fusion Boast

Fri, 2014-12-26 00:00

The year saw a major new report on climate change—and modest movement on renewables, carbon burial, and emissions agreements.

In 2014, the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued stark warnings in its latest assessment of climate science, projecting potentially catastrophic outcomes if greenhouse-gas emissions are not brought in check.

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