Fly-in breakfast big draw for Flight Centre

Tow pilot Kevin DeBiasio looks on as air cadet Melody Leung, 16, sits in the cockpit of a Bellanca Scout. (Photo: Miranda Leybourne, Brandon Sun)

— By Miranda Leybourne, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Brandon Sun

For the first time in three years, the Brandon Flying Centre was able to have its fly-in breakfast on Saturday.

People from all over the province – including some army, air and sea cadets from all over Canada – were present at the event on Saturday morning, July 23, coming by car and by airplane. Pancakes were made on demand and fresh coffee was flowing. A bouncy castle was set up for children to enjoy, while those who wished to take to the skies had the opportunity to do so thanks to the day’s ideal weather.

Despite the cloud cover and rain that fell on Brandon later in the day, the morning’s event went off without a hitch, with the sun breaking through the clouds and very little wind.

David Creighton, CEO of the Brandon Flight Centre, said the event was a wonderful opportunity to introduce people to aviation.

“Some folks want to come out and just see the airplanes, walk around and that, others just for a pancake breakfast, something to enjoy and of course the airplane rides are always a huge hit,” Creighton said. “It gets people out, and you never know — it might ignite that spark in somebody, a kid that maybe, 10, 15 years down the road might want to be a pilot or aircraft maintenance engineer.”

Ellen Fenerty, an office administrator at the centre, said the turnout to the event was incredible.

“I’m really loving how much of the community actually came by to see what’s up,” Fenerty told the Sun on Saturday.

Army, air and sea cadets from as far away as Thunder Bay, Ont., and Richmond, B.C., for their glider training program.

Kevin DeBiasio, a commanding officer with the Royal Canadian Air Cadets, said he’s thrilled to be doing summer training with the cadets again this year after a quiet two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. DeBiasio said that during that time, a lot of the cadets aged out of the program after they turned 19.

“Getting new cadets in during COVID was tough, but we started meeting in person again in January or February, depending on the area.”

DeBiasio runs one of 22 summer training centres throughout the country. The one in Brandon is solely focused on the air cadet’s gliding program. “Things have been coming back nicely,” DeBiasio said. “We’re able to run a summer training centre again. There’s 22 summer training centres across Canada, so this is one of them. This one is totally focused on the youth gliding program.”

Cadets between the ages of 16 and 18 are trained at the centres, and about 320 cadets receive their glider pilot licence each year. The program at the Brandon Flight Centre started during the first week of July and will run until the fourth week of August, when there will be a wing parade for the 19 graduates who took their training there.


Tecnam debuts Gran Lusso P2010 at Oshkosh

The Gran Lusso is a luxury version of its P2010 four-seater with refined Italian leather upholstery, carbon fibre insets, and an all-new center FADEC power quadrant that features a Standard FMS to accompany the Garmin NXI touch screen avionics suite. The Gran Lusso is powered by the Continental 170hp Turbo Charged CD-170 Jet/A fuel Power plant.

The Gran Lusso includes, as standard features: New layout of cockpit panel;AFCS Control Unit GMC 707 autopilot with ESP: Flight Management System keyboard and knobs (GCU475); aluminum Trim control wheel in the central console; new parking brakes: double mobile phone housing: improved USB ports: electrical rudder control trim relocated: new wing tips with integrated LED lights; Special Total Metallic painting; and a range of premium interiors combinations.

Tecnam explains the aircraft burns just 5.2 US Gal per hour (less than 20 litres) and takes advantage of the high-wing configuration with 3 access doors plus another dedicated one for the baggage compartment. The airplane is rated to cover 1,000 nm with the full tank capacity of 63 US Gal (240 litres).

The P2010 TDI Gran Lusso is added to the P2010 range: with three different powerplants, and three different fuel capabilities: automotive unleaded (approved on 180hp version), Avgas on the most powerful 215hp variant and, Jet/diesel.

(Photo: Tecnam)

First Volaria Aviation Festival set for September in Mirabel

— By Stéphanie Prévost, Local Journalism Initiative, L’Éveil (Photo: L’Éveil)

A new festival will take place in Mirabel, Quebec, on September 24 and 25. Called Volaria, the festival will be entirely devoted to the aeronautical field with the City of Mirabel serving as the official host.

Activities of all kinds are planned during this family weekend. “We are expecting 50,000 people over two days,” said Maude Paquette, general manager of the Volaria festival.

For the first edition of Volaria, several groups are scheduled for the shows, including the Snowbirds, the F-18 demo team, the SkyHawks paratroopers. “It’s very complex to organize an air show. There are a lot of preventions for the security level of the event,” adds Paquette.

In addition to the air shows, the concept of Volaria is also to create an immersion in the aeronautical universe. An informative section will be installed as an open-air museum. Festival-goers will be able to see the evolution of aircraft up to the present day through different models. “We are working hard so that people can go on planes and visit them,” Paquette says. A comparison with cars from the same eras is also planned in the presentations.

The organizers of the event want to both amaze their public and educate and transmit the history of aviation in Mirabel. “We try to awaken passion in young people. Aeronautics is not just about becoming an airplane pilot. There are so many jobs in the sector,” Paquette explains.

In the Quartier du futur zone, demonstrations of innovative technologies will be offered, such as drones and taxis of the future. These will also show the progress of the aeronautical industry in the face of environmental challenges.

Carpooling to get to the site will be strongly encouraged. “Any car with four or more people on board will not pay for parking,” Paquette says.

“Aeronautics in Quebec is very important. We are world leaders. And in Mirabel, we have a very important aeronautical district.”

SKYTRAC upgrades Iridium Certus 100 for general aviation

SKYTRAC in partnership with Iridium Communications is introducing what it describes as an optimized Iridium Certus midband satcom solution for the general aviation market at EAA AirVenture.

The optimization, explains SKYTRAC, allows pilots to leverage efficient Low Earth Orbit (LEO) Iridium Certus satellite data with Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) applications for real-time weather information,including SIGMETs, AIRMETs, PIREPs, and NOTAMs,

The midband satcom service class, Iridium Certus 100, enables up to 88 Kbps of bandwidth through SKYTRAC’s DLS-100 and Blue Sky Network’s SkyLink 7100 portable terminals. It allows pilots and passengers to communicate through voice and messaging, while also enabling flight tracking and application updates such as graphical and real-time weather alerts.

SKYTRAC explains that, together with Iridium Certus 100 and Iridium Certus Connected terminals, pilots can bring intelligent connectivity to any airframe with powerful, small form factor devices that do not require costly installations or certifications.

“With this partnership, personal aviators as well as large operators can complement their cellular connectivity with satcom without its prohibitive cost,” said Iain Ronis, Director of Product Management, SKYTRAC. “With inflight connectivity, general aviation operators can stay connected to their apps, update flight plans, download the latest weather, and communicate through text and voice-based messaging, even in remote locations with no cellular service.”

Operators seeking to upgrade their operations with satcom can leverage SKYTRAC’s DLS-100 midband datalink and GPS system. SKYTRAC explains the DLS-10 is suitable for a variety of aircraft platforms and provides reliable midband satellite connectivity, globally. Operators looking to equip with both cellular and satcom can leverage Blue Sky Network’s SkyLink 7100, which uses 4G/LTE networks to create a low-latency, dual-mode, cloud-based service solution.

(Photo: Adobestock)

Residents say noise from Grimsby airfield planes are keeping them ‘hostages in our own home’

Max Smith stands in front of Grimsby Regional Airport. He says the noise of the planes flying over his house is ‘torture’. (Photo: Chris Pickles)

— By Chris Pickles, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Grimsby Lincoln News

In August 2020, the Smith family’s lives changed for the worse.

That’s when Grimsby Regional Airport went from a quiet, seldom-used runway into a busy airfield, sending dozens of planes a day over their house.

“They changed our lives in one night,” said Max Smith. “In a few minutes,” added Linda, his wife. Now, the Smiths and other residents around the airfield are petitioning politicians to restrict the runway’s activity and bring peace back into their lives.

Greg Middleton, who lives around two kilometres from the airfield, estimates that before August 2020 there were around 10 flights per week from the airfield in Grimsby.

Now, he says that on some days they pass over every four to five minutes for hours at a time, flying as low as 75 feet above houses.

The Smiths, who live with their daughter less than 500 metres from the end of the runway, say the planes fly as low as 50 feet above their house, which vibrates countertops and shakes the house.

After the planes started flying with more regularity, the family became increasingly distressed by the noise.

“I couldn’t sleep for three weeks,” said Max. “I was going crazy.”

Max and Linda took to wearing hearing protection around the house to drown out the noise, but even that wasn’t enough, and Max was forced to stay inside in the basement. “We’re hostages in our own home,” he said. “It’s torture.”

Eventually, he became so unwell that he went to the doctor who gave him medication to treat anxiety.

Gary Plummer, airport manager at Grimsby Airport, defended the airport’s procedures and said they’re trying to work with the community to resolve any issues.

“We’re here to try and get along with the neighbours,” he said. “We’re not trying to make it difficult for them by any stretch of the imagination.”

He estimated that depending on headwinds, the planes would be at around 200 to 300 feet high by the time they pass over the street where the Smiths live, and could be even higher.

Grimsby Airport rules were changed in winter last year to forbid any pilots from using the runway unless they received prior permission. They also asked any pilots wanting to fly at night to use a different airport.

Plummer encouraged any residents affected by the noise to contact him directly when there’s an issue but admits that he won’t accept abuse, which he claimed he has been subjected to from irate callers.

He added that if residents didn’t want to listen to aircraft noises, they shouldn’t have moved next to the airport, which has been there for nearly 50 years.

“You have to take care of your own research before you buy a place,” he said.

For the residents, the noise got so bad that Middleton started a community group, representing 43 residents, to petition politicians to change the rules to lower the noise from the airfield.

The group wants a change in policy to force private airfields like the one in Grimsby to have a minimum clearance of 1000 feet from properties during the takeoff and landing phases of flights.

If that’s not possible, they have requested for other avenues to be explored to heavily restrict the number of planes that use the runway.

They have sent a letter petitioning MP Dean Allison to advocate for the changes, and the group claims that the documents were forwarded to the Ministry of Transportation a couple of weeks ago, but they haven’t heard anything back yet.

Fortunately, the level of activity has died down recently, which is due to a combination of rising fuel costs and the flight school at the location being sold.

But Middleton and the Smiths don’t expect the peace to last. “We’re not going to let up,” said Middleton.

CAE launches Electric Aircraft Modification Program with Piper Aircraft

CAE on July 19 at the Farnborough International Air Show 2022 announced it has partnered with Piper Aircraft to develop a conversion kit via a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) for in-service Piper Archer (PA-28-181) aircraft to help bring an electric variant of the aircraft to market.

CAE expects to convert two-thirds of its Piper Archer training fleet and develop a curriculum for new pilots to train on the operation of electric aircraft. CAE is bringing together industry leaders from Canada, the United States, and Europe to develop an aircraft that will reduce carbon emissions and noise levels at its flight schools around the world, while training future pilots to operate electric aircraft.

“The development of this technology is a first for CAE,” said Marc Parent, CAE’s President and CEO. “As an engineering powerhouse and one of the largest Piper Archer operators, CAE is uniquely positioned to make electric-powered flight a reality at our flight schools and beyond.”

CAE and Piper Aircraft intend to work together on an electrical conversion kit for third parties, along with training and support services required for the operation of electrified Piper Archer aircraft. H55 of Switzerland is set to provide the battery system. CAE is also engaging with Safran Electrical & Power to incorporate the new ENGINeUSTM 100 electric smart motor into the STC conversion kit.

“With 28,000 aircraft in global service, the PA-28 is the ideal platform for real world flight training curriculums and professional pilot training programs like CAE’s,” said Piper Aircraft President and CEO, John Calcagno.

(Image: CAE)

Porter orders another 20 Embraer jets for expansion

Porter Airlines placed a firm order for 20 Embraer E195-E2 passenger jets, adding to its existing 30 firm orders. Porter will use the E195-E2 to extend its service to destinations throughout North America. The deal, with a list price value of US$1.56 billion, brings Porter’s orders with Embraer to a total of up to 100 E195-E2 aircraft, with 50 firm commitments and 50 purchase rights.

In 2021, Porter ordered 30 Embraer E195-E2 jets, with purchase rights for a further 50 aircraft, worth US$5.82 billion at list price, with all options exercised.

“We are in final preparations to introduce the E195-E2 to North America, joining other global airlines already benefiting from its use,” said Michael Deluce, President and CEO of Porter. “The aircraft will become core to our fleet, as Porter reshapes passenger expectations for air travel in same way we did over 15 years ago.”

Porter will be the North American launch customer for Embraer’s newest family of jets, the E2. Porter’s investment is set to disrupt Canadian aviation; enhancing competition, elevating passenger service levels and creating as many as 6,000 new jobs. Porter intends to deploy the E195-E2s to popular business and leisure destinations throughout Canada, the United States, Mexico and the Caribbean, from Ottawa, Montreal, Halifax and Toronto Pearson International Airport.

Porter’s first delivery and entry into service is scheduled to start in the second half of 2022. The E195-E2 accommodates between 120 and 146 passengers.

(Photo: Porter Airlines)

PABLO AIR, 7-Eleven begin convenience store drone delivery in Korea

PABLO AIR, in cooperation with South Korea’s 7-Eleven branch, has opened the first convenience store drone delivery station in Korea for the commercialization of drone delivery.

The drone delivery station primarily consists of a control tower and the drone’s vertical take-off and landing aerodrome, which allows one-stop processing, from the taking of delivery orders to the completion of the delivery flight.

PABLO AIR’s drone delivery service is a beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) flight in which the drone is controlled with a wGCS (Web-based Ground Control System) paired with a smart mobility integrated control system (PAMNet, PABLO AIR Mobility Network) for safe and agile operation of the aircraft.

Customers can order convenience store items for drone delivery through the app Allivery (All+Delivery) and have their items sent to the delivery station in a rural resort town of Gapyeong which is about 1 km away, or three minutes by drone. After an order is received, the items are moved by a winch connected to the drone station to the rooftop, where the helipad is located. Once the items have been loaded in the drone’s delivery box, the ground control system operator sends the drone on an autonomous flight to the delivery station. After completing QR authorization, the customer can safely take out their ordered items, and then the drone returns back to its starting point.

Drone Delivery is available from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. (before sunset) from Tuesday to Saturday every week starting from July 13. From now until the end of this year, there is no minimum order amount and delivery is free of charge.

The drone, which is 990 x 990 x 750 mm in size, has a maximum payload (PA-H3) of 5 kg and a maximum flight time of 25 minutes. For the pilot program, the drone flies at an average speed of 36 km/h (10 m/s), and since the delivery station is only 1 km from the convenience store, the drone can complete its delivery in about 150 seconds.

(Photo: PABLO AIR)

Garmin GFC 500 certification for more aircraft

Garmin International received Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Supplemental Type Certification (STC) for the GFC 500 autopilot in additional aircraft to include the Cessna 172D/P172D model, Commander 112B, 112TC/TC-A and 114 models.

The GFC 500 autopilot is intended for light piston aircraft while delivering in-flight characteristics, self-monitoring capabilities and minimal maintenance requirements when compared to older generation autopilot systems.

The GFC 500 autopilot integrates with Garmin’s GI 275 or G5 electronic flight instruments; a combination of either a standby GI 275 or G5 electronic flight instrument interfaced to a G500 TXi flight display; or a G3X Touch flight display.

Garmin explains the autopilot mode controller contains large dedicated keys and knobs, a control wheel that allows for easy adjustment to aircraft pitch, airspeed and vertical speed, and a Level Mode (LVL) that returns the aircraft to straight-and-level flight with the push of a dedicated button. In addition, with the GFC 500, appropriately equipped aircraft can also take advantage of Smart Glide, a safety tool that helps pilots in an engine power loss emergency by automating tasks and helping to reduce pilot workload.

(Image: Garmin)