Slick design? Check. Huge windows? Check. A turbo-charged piston engine that can scream through the sky? Check and mate. This plane looks like it can play in the big leagues.
Cobalt Aircraft is unveiling its Co50 280-mph-piston pusher at Oshkosh next month.
Founded by a Georgia Tech aerospace grad, the Co50 project began in 2002.
Featuring a spacey interior and an enormous wrap-around windshield, the designers cleared the drawing board before developing this aircraft.
A 350-hp twin-turbo TSIOF-550-D2B pushes the Co50 to hit 245 KTAS at 8,000 feet, according to the company’s web site. The site also features interactive tools to check out aircraft specs, such as weights and range.
The company soon will begin flight-testing for certification. Representatives will hold a press conference 10:30 a.m. July 28 at Cobalt’s display at Airventure, booths No. 21 and 22.
Many King Air C90s can now fly faster on less fuel.
Hawker Beechcraft Services announced this week at its Wichita headquarters that it has completed testing and certification on a composite winglet for the King Air 90X.
The composite combines the aerodynamic benefits of a winglet with a gross-weight increase that increases handling, range and payload, a press release said.
The 90X package, first unveiled at last year’s EAA Airventure, now is available at all U.S. HBS service centers.
Read the entire release from Beechcraft here.
A panel of experts at an aviation safety forum this week issued a scary scenario for the sky in future commercial aviation. They told the NTSB that future pilots at airlines could be, in general, less experienced and ethical amidst an industry in which the workers will be in high demand as airlines begin hiring again.
The Associated Press reports in its coverage of the forum that the hardest hit will be regional airlines, which employ pilots with less experience at lower salaries. Fewer college students and military pilots are looking for work at airlines, as 42,000 pilots will need to be hired over the next 10 years. Flights will still need to be made, and some fear that this could compromise qualifications.
In other news, the FAA says widespread NexGen upgrades will come a little more quickly than initially anticipated. Quoted in the Dallas Morning News, Federal Aviation Administrator Randy Babbitt told the American Association of Airport Executives that the bulk of improvements will have occurred by 2016 rather than the forecasted 2018, as airlines rush to be competitive with advanced gear as the transition snowballs.
The first-ever International Learn to Fly Day (website) appears to have been a smashing success, as 40,000 people attended 450 events nationwide, according to the EAA. Check out coverage of events in Gainesville, Fla., Austin, Minn., and Fitchburg, Mass., where a flying car drew a crowd.
Perhaps programs like this will help ensure the next generation of pilots are, in fact, experienced and ethical.
The above video comes from a YouTube channel called National Business Series and, via Sterling Aviation, it highlights benefits of business aviation. Check it out.
- In the news today, the Texas border between the United States and Mexico could soon resemble the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan, at least in one aspect.
Predator drones could deploy soon to monitor activity in the area. It is another effort to combat illegal immigration into the U.S., according to a report in the Austin American-Statesman.
Though political figures have accused the FAA of foot dragging, a spokeswoman said the agency is working on approving a plan to allow the flights “as quickly as we can.”
The aircraft would be housed in a Naval base in Corpus Christ Christi.
- British firm Balli Aviation, Ltd., was recently fined $2 million by a U.S. Federal Court for illegally exporting a Boeing 747 into Iran.
Court documents contend that the company planned to bring three commercial jets into the country without a required export license.
- A recently published Harvard report outlines the steps needed to implement NexGen air traffic control nationwide.
Recommendations include a governance strategy to build support from pilots, controllers and travelers; leadership from government and commerce; placing incentives to speed up conversion; developing financing solutions; and creating an entity for risk management. Read the full report here.
- EAA Airventure will include a live auction this year, the first of its kind. To sign up to sell or buy a plane, or merely to get more info on the event, click the blue text here.