Tag Archives: 40I

Get the most from ForeFlight – Advanced tips from ForeFlight’s lead product designer

Sporty’s and iPad Pilot News recently partnered with ForeFlight to present an all-new webinar to explore the latest new features in aviation’s top app. The presentation, led by Ryan McBride, lead product designer at ForeFlight, provides expert advice on how to go beyond the basics and learn app shortcuts that can really pay off in flight.

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Source: Ipad appsGet the most from ForeFlight – Advanced tips from ForeFlight’s lead product designer

Think Safety First on July 4th

As you celebrate the Independence Day holiday, keep safety in mind. Know the aviation safety rules while flying your drones and celebrating the 4th.

Here are general guidelines for people flying drones:

  • Dont fly your drone in or near fireworks
  • Dont fly over people
  • Dont fly near airports

To learn more about what you can and cant do with your drone, go to faa.gov/uas or download the B4UFLY app for free in the Apple and Google Play store.

There are also strict rules prohibiting airline passengers from packing or carrying fireworks on domestic or international flights. Remember these simple rules:

  • Dont pack fireworks in your carry-on bags
  • Dont pack fireworks in your checked luggage
  • Dont send fireworks through the mail or parcel services

Passengers violating the rules can face fines or criminal prosecution. When in DoubtLeave it out!

For more information on the passenger rules for fireworks and other hazardous materials, please go to www.faa.gov/go/packsafe/. Leave the fireworks at homeFireworks Don’t Fly poster (PDF).

Source: FAAThink Safety First on July 4th

FAA Surveys Commercial Drone Operators

If youve registered a commercial drone, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) wants to hear from you.

On June 19, the FAA sent a questionnaire to everyone who has registered a commercial drone more formally, an unmanned aircraft system (UAS) for anything but recreational or hobby use. Most of these owners fly their drones for commercial purposes, but the survey population also includes government departments and other users. Hobbyists are not included in this survey.

The goal is to collect information on drone flight activities under the FAAs small drone rule (Part 107), data that will help the FAA improve the services it delivers to the UAS community. Responses to the questionnaire are voluntary and entered 100 percent electronically. The survey will take about 10 minutes to complete.

The questions include areas such as number of drones registered, number and types of missions completed in 2017, primary locations where the operator flies and types of waivers requested. The survey also asks how operators want to get information about drone-related issues from the FAA, and how satisfied they are with the news channels they use now

The questionnaire is completely anonymous, so responses cannot be attributed to an individual.

So if the questionnaire is still sitting on your computer or mobile device, what are you waiting for? We wantand needyour input.

Source: FAAFAA Surveys Commercial Drone Operators

AirText introduces lower cost option

AirText LT

Late last year we reviewed a new connectivity option from a company called Send Solutions. Their AirText box offered a semi-permanently installed solution for texting and even phone calls, but at a price far less than traditional in-flight WiFi solutions (which often cost well over $50,000). While the AirText and AirText+ have found their way into a number of airplanes, the price and size meant they were out of reach for most single engine piston airplanes. Now there’s a smaller, less expensive option that will work in almost any airplane.

AirText LT
The new AirText LT is small enough to carry in a flight bag.

The AirText LT is half the price of the original AirText, and is designed to be carried onto the airplane instead of installed. Simply plug into the cigarette lighter and place the small Iridium antenna on the dash or by a side window. The 4.75″ x 3″ x 1″ metal box does not require any roof-mounted antennas or permanent mounting, so it can slide into a side pocket or a flight bag – even renters or flying club members can use it. Once the AirText LT is powered up, simply open the free AirText app on your phone or tablet to start communicating.

Compared to the AirText and AirText+ there are a few differences in features. Up to six devices can be connected at once to the AirText LT (vs. 16 for the higher end units). Also, unlike the + model, the LT cannot do voice calls. However, the AirText LT still has the thoughtful touches we liked so much on the original products: private messaging for each user (unlike many Iridium devices), smart notifications that tell important contacts when you’re flying, and the option to retrieve METARs and TAFs from distant airports. It will work at any altitude and anywhere in the world.

The AirText LT is available for $4950, including the box, 12V power cable, Iridium antenna, and carrying case. Data plans are reasonable: for $300/year, subscribers get 500 messages with no monthly minimum or maximum. After that, each additional message is five cents.

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Source: Ipad appsAirText introduces lower cost option

4 weather tips for Garmin Pilot users

Garmin Pilot has been expanding its weather options lately, with a particular focus on interactive map layers. If you’re only watching the radar and METARs, you’re missing a lot of good information that can help your next flight be smoother and safer. Here are four tools to use.

1. Make TAFs visual with the profile view. Garmin’s split-screen view is a powerful addition to your preflight briefing routine. The profile view shows your trip in 3D, with terrain, obstacles, airspace, and weather all displayed relative to your planned altitude. The en route weather icons in particular offer a lot of information in an easy-to-understand format, including sky coverage and lowest ceiling. To get the most out of this feature, you can move forward in time to see how conditions are forecast to change. Tap the timestamp at the bottom right and use the slider bar to see the TAFs in action. If you notice those white circles moving down, you know conditions are trending towards IFR.

2. Compare icing severity and probability. Icing is a serious threat for most piston airplanes, but fortunately there have never been better tools to help forecast this phenomenon. From the Map page, tap the overlay menu at the bottom left and select Icing, Internet. You’ll see an overlay on the map, but also a new button at the lower right: Severity+SLD. This tells you the map is showing you the severity (light, moderate, severe) of any potential ice, and is displayed in shades of blue. Supercooled Large Droplets (SLD), a serious threat for any aircraft, is shown in red.

You can tap on that button to change the view to Severity+SLD (>25% PRB), which shows the severity of icing conditions that have a better than 25% probability of occurring, or Severity+SLD(>50% PRB) for 50% probability. Finally, you can tap on the Probability option to see how likely it is you’ll encounter any ice – regardless of its severity. A smart pilot will use both forecast tools to get a complete understanding of the atmosphere. Remember to use the altitude and time sliders to see how icing conditions will change in the future and at different altitudes.

3. Alternate Selection Guide. When do you need to file an alternate? How do you pick one? Garmin Pilot makes this a lot easier. First, go to the Trip Planning page and enter your proposed route and ETD. The app will pop up an alert if your destination requires an alternate, per FAR 91.169.

Then, for help finding a good alternate, tap on the Alternate Selection Guide just above. This will show nearby airports and their forecast weather at your ETA. You can show all airports, or only airports with a TAF. You can further filter by airports with a runway over 5000 ft.

4. Show storm tracks. Weather doesn’t always move from west to east, and Garmin’s storm tracks feature is a good reminder. With the radar displayed on the Map page, tap the lightning bolt symbol at the bottom right corner. This will turn on orange arrows for major storm cells. The arrows show the direction of movement, and the marks show where that cell is predicted to be in 15-minute increments. It’s not precise, but it’s a good way to get a feel for a storm’s movement – especially if you animate the radar. This information is also available in flight with SiriusXM weather.

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Source: Ipad apps4 weather tips for Garmin Pilot users

FAA Establishes Drone Restrictions Over Federal Prison

At the request of Federal security partners, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been using its existing authority under Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) 99.7Special Security Instructionsto address concerns about drone operations over national security sensitive facilities by establishing temporary Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) specific flight restrictions.

In cooperation with Department of Justice (DOJ), the FAA is establishing an additional restriction on drone flights up to 400 feet within the lateral boundaries of the following federal facility:

  • Administrative United States Penitentiary Thomson near Clinton, IL

Information on the FAA Notice to Airmen (NOTAM), which defines these restrictions, and all of the currently covered DOJ locations, can be found by clicking here.To ensure the public is aware of these restricted locations, this FAA website also provides an interactive map, downloadable geospatial data, and other important details. A link to these restrictions is also included in the FAAs B4UFLY mobile app.

Additional, broader information regarding flying drones in the National Airspace System, including frequently asked questions, is available on the FAAs UAS website.

These changes, which have been highlighted by FAA NOTAM FDC 8/8243, are pending until they become effective on July 7, 2018. Note that there are only a few exceptions that permit drone flights within this restriction, and they must be coordinated with the individual facility and/or the FAA.




Operators who violate the flight restriction may be subject to enforcement action, including potential civil penalties and criminal charges.

The FAA is continuing to consider additional requests by eligible federal security agencies for UAS-specific flight restrictions using the Agencys 99.7 authority as they are received. Additional changes to these restrictions will be announced by the FAA as appropriate.

Source: FAAFAA Establishes Drone Restrictions Over Federal Prison

FAA Commissions New Tower at Sarasota Airport

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) cut over to a new air traffic control tower at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport early this morning. The new, 128 foot-tall tower will enable air traffic controllers to continue to provide the safest, most efficient service to flights at the busy Florida airport.

Air traffic controllers working in the 525 square-foot tower cab control flights up to 4,000 feet in altitude within a five-mile radius of SRQ; from five to 10 miles from the airport, they handle flights from 1,200 to 4,000 feet in altitude.

A total of 34 FAA employees work at the new facility, 20 in air traffic and 14 in technical operations, which maintains the FAA electronics equipment in the tower and on the airfield.

The FAA and the Sarasota Manatee Airport Authority (SMAA) built the new tower under a unique agreement. The FAA funded the new tower design, engineering and electronic equipment. Agency technicians and engineers installed the electronics and will maintain the equipment. SMAA funded, constructed and owns the new tower. SMAA will maintain the facility, which includes a 9,000 square foot base building that houses equipment, administrative offices and training rooms.

The FAA and SMAA officially will dedicate the new facility in mid-September.

Source: FAAFAA Commissions New Tower at Sarasota Airport

FAA-EC Pact Paves the Way for Lower Costs for U.S. Manufacturers.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the European Commission (EC) have signed a decision that will pave the way to lower fees that the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) charges U.S. manufacturers to validate their design approvals.

The agreementcalled Bilateral Oversight Board Decision 0008 (BOB 0008)was formalized at the 17th Annual FAA-EASA International Safety Conference in Washington, DC.

The FAA and EASA have previously signed revisions to the Technical Implementation Procedures (TIP) to the U.S.-EU Aviation Safety Agreement that reduce the time and effort to validate design approvals. Following verification and confirmation, BOB 0008 allows further recognition of the reduced involvement of the validating authority and opens the door for lower fees charged by EASA. The agencies will also be able to approve basic aircraft type certifications with minimal scrutiny.

BOB8 is a further recognition that both the FAA and EASA fully subscribe to the philosophy that safety in todays global aviation market depends to a great extent on international partnerships between aviation regulators.

The FAA and EASA also expect to sign an update to the Validation Improvement Roadmap at the FAA-EASA Safety Conference. The roadmap helps guide further streamlining of validation approvals by allowing each side to optimize reliance on the others certification system and eliminate or reduce technical involvement.

Source: FAAFAA-EC Pact Paves the Way for Lower Costs for U.S. Manufacturers.

New aircraft transition courses available in Sporty’s Pilot Training app

Sporty’s released their new Pilot Training app last year, bringing an all-new training course concept to iPhone, iPad and AppleTV. The app was created to replace their first-generation training course apps to take advantage of the latest in mobile app development technology and add some cutting-edge new features.

Another key feature of the Pilot Training app is that it’s designed to keep all your courses organized in one location, with room to grow as new courses become available. It initially launched with Sporty’s 3 most popular flight pilot training courses, including Learn to Fly (Private/Sport/Recreational training), Instrument Rating and Flying with ForeFlight, and now features 10 separate course offerings.

Each course includes downloadable video content, test preparation, review quizzes and study guides. Best of all you can access each course on whatever device is most convenient, iPhone, iPad or AppleTV, and your progress automatically stays in sync. Each course also includes access to an online version accessible from any computer web browser.

The latest update to the Pilot Training app adds 4 new aircraft transition courses for pilots learning to fly Helicopters, Seaplanes, Gliders and Multiengine airplanes.


How to get the new courses

After downloading the Pilot Training app, you can try each course out free by viewing a limited amount of content. You can then purchase access to the course directly in the app, or at sportys.com.

iPhone/iPad – download the free app here

AppleTV – go to the App Store on AppleTV (4th Gen or newer) and search for Pilot Training

Online – visit Sporty’s Course Catalog and purchase direct access to any course

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Source: Ipad appsNew aircraft transition courses available in Sporty’s Pilot Training app

Want to be a Controller at the New York TRACON?

The Federal Aviation Administration is accepting applications beginning June 19 through June 26 from people interested in becoming air traffic controllers at the New York Terminal Radar Approach Control (TRACON) facility in Westbury, N.Y.

The <a href="https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/502735700" <InvalidTag announcement is open only to applicants who live within a 50-mile radius of Westbury. They must be U.S. citizens, speak English clearly, and be no older than 30 years of age (with limited exceptions). Applicants must have a combination of three years of education and/or work experience. They must also pass a medical examination, security investigation and FAA air traffic pre-employment tests.

Accepted applicants will be trained at the FAA Academy in Oklahoma City, Okla.

The New York TRACON manages aircraft flying to, from and over the New York metropolitan area, including the three major airports John F. Kennedy International, LaGuardia and Newark Liberty International as well as Teterboro and Long Island MacArthur.

Active duty military members must provide documentation certifying that they expect to be discharged or released from active duty under honorable conditions no later than 120 days after the date the documentation is signed.

Interested applicants should visitwww.usajobs.govto start building their applications orwww.faa.gov/Jobsfor more information about air traffic controllers.

Source: FAAWant to be a Controller at the New York TRACON?