Building the Boeing 747-8 – Worlds Longest Airliner – Video

The Boeing 747-8 is a wide-body jet airliner developed by Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Officially announced in 2005, the 747-8 is the fourth-generation Boeing 747 version, with lengthened fuselage, redesigned wings, and improved efficiency. The 747-8 is the largest 747 version, the largest commercial aircraft built in the United States and the longest passenger aircraft in the world.

The 747-8 is offered in two main variants: the 747-8 Intercontinental (747-8I) for passengers and the 747-8 Freighter (747-8F) for cargo. The first 747-8F performed the model’s maiden flight on February 8, 2010, with the 747-8 Intercontinental following on March 20, 2011. Delivery of the first freighter aircraft occurred in October 2011; passenger model deliveries began in 2012. In July 2013, confirmed orders for the 747-8 totaled 107, including 67 of the freighter version, and 40 of the passenger version.

Capt. Ivan

FAA seeks inspections of Boeing 787 ELT’s

(Reuters) – The Federal Aviation Administration said on Friday it will require inspections of emergency locator beacons on U.S.-registered Boeing 787 Dreamliners, but stopped short of making airlines disable or remove the devices blamed for a fire aboard a parked 787 in London last week.

UK investigating authorities on Thursday pinpointed the battery-powered beacons as the likely cause of the fire and recommended disabling the units.

The UK probe is now focused on the possible role played by moisture and condensation in the 787 cabin.

The FAA said it is working with Boeing on instructions for the inspections that are meant to ensure that wires are routed properly and look for pinched wires, unusual moisture or heating.

United Airlines is the only U.S. carrier currently flying the 787, so is the only one formally governed by the FAA action. Twelve other airlines also fly the plane and the FAA said it will inform other aviation regulators about its call for mandatory inspections.

The beacons, made by Honeywell International Inc. are designed to send out a signal so rescuers can locate the wreckage after a crash. U.S. regulations do not require commercial aircraft in scheduled service to carry the devices, but most jetliners have them as standard safety equipment.

The FAA said it is continuing to work closely with the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) and with Honeywell in the probe into the July 12 fire aboard an Ethiopian Airlines ETHA.UL aircraft.

The FAA did not indicate it would expand the inspections to other types of aircraft. The AAIB also recommended in its announcement on Thursday that the FAA and other regulators perform a safety review of the devices on other aircraft besides the 787 and take action where appropriate.

Honeywell repeated its support for “temporarily addressing” questions about the beacons on the 787. It noted that the investigation is continuing.
Boeing said in a statement that it supported the action by regulators in response to the AAIB’s action.

“We have provided instructions to customers giving them the required information to meet their regulatory guidelines,” the statement said. “We are working very closely with the regulatory agencies, customers and suppliers to coordinate all required actions.

“The safety of passengers and crew members who fly aboard Boeing airplanes is our highest priority. We are confident the 787 is safe and we stand behind its overall integrity.”

The fire has revived questions about the high-tech Dreamliner, which has once again been thrust into the spotlight with a fire problem.

The aircraft was grounded for 3-1/2 months earlier this year after lithium-ion batteries in a different area of the plane overheated, emitted smoke and in one case caught fire.

The AAIB said the lithium-manganese batteries in the Honeywell beacons were likely the cause because they were the only equipment located where the fire burned and they had a power source. But it has not completely ruled out other potential causes such as moisture, and the investigation is continuing.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal-Esa and Alwyn Scott; Editing by Gary Hill and Andre Grenon)

ELT Battery could be the cause of Dreamliner fire

A different type of battery than the one that caused the worldwide grounding of the Dreamliner fleet could be this time the reason of the on board fire of an Ethiopian B787 last Friday at Heathrow Airport – UK.

We are talking about the Emergency Locator Transmitter – ELT Battery.  This device, used to locate the aircraft in case of accident, is powered by self contained batteries, independent of the lithium-ion ones that caused an electrical fire on board an All Nippon Airways 787 and several other incidents that caused the grounding of the Dreamliner fleet all over the world.

Manufactured by Honeywell International, the emergency locator transmitters had been under scrutiny by the Federal Aviation Administration, who recommended them being replaced because the device failed in tests, anyway ignition risk was not the cause of the failure.  Honeywell is now joining the U.S. investigators to determine if the model used on the Ethiopian Dreamliner is the one suspected of causing problems.

Investigators and safety officials said that this the first time that an ELT transmitter is investigated suspected of causing an aircraft fire.

Richard Aboulafia, an aviation consultant said that “Unless the company can say for sure that the incident is isolated to this particular aircraft, it’s not welcome news, the one systematic problem to plague the Dreamliner is that so many of its technologies are new that it is very difficult for the regulators to fully grasp all the changes,”

Capt. Ivan

This Plane Just Flew Over The UK WIthout A Pilot

"Flying Test Bed" - BAE Aerospace Systems Jetstream 31

“Flying Test Bed” – BAE Aerospace Systems Jetstream 31

The first pilotless flight over British airspace has been successfully completed.

Aerospace company BAE Systems flew a Jetstream 31 – dubbed the “flying test bed” – from Warton near Preston in Lancashire to Inverness in Scotland.

Strictly speaking, the flight was not unmanned — two pilots were in the cockpit as a precaution.

But as a BAE Systems spokesman said: “They were sitting there having a coffee. They did not have to do anything.”

The aircraft was controlled by a remote operator at Warton using advanced sensors and on-board robotic systems.

The flight was part of the £62 million ASTRAEA (Autonomous Systems Technology Related Airborne Evaluation & Assessment) programme, which is backed by the government.

Previous test flights were over the Irish Sea but this flight, made last month, was the first over airspace used by other aircraft. The Jetsream is able to use its “sense and avoid” system to avoid collisions.

The aircraft can also detect and avoid bad weather conditions and can relay air traffic control instructions to the pilot on the ground via satellite.

Although unmanned passenger flights are probably many years off, the programme could in the shorter term be used for such things as search and rescue operations far out at sea.

ASTRAEA programme director Lambert Dopping-Hepenstal said: the work being done ” will likely impact all of us in the next five, 10, 20 years as unmanned aircraft and associated technology develop and become a part of everyday life”.

He went on: “These latest trials help prove the technology we need to routinely operate unmanned aircraft in our airspace and also help the regulators develop the framework in which the aircraft can operate.”

Business and energy minister Michael Fallon said: “We welcome this pioneering flight at the end of the ASTRAEA programme.

“ASTRAEA has made significant achievements, placing the UK industry in a good position globally on unmanned aircraft and the development of regulations for their civil use.”

Source:  The Huffington Post

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