“It is not the function of the government to keep the citizen from falling into error; it is the function of the citizen to keep the government from falling into error.”
Justice Robert H. Jackson
African Pilot’s November 2020 edition
As we get closer to the end of this year, the November edition features ‘Gifts for Pilots’ as well as many international newsworthy aspects and developments in aviation. The November edition is complete and once again I would like to thank our valuable advertisers for their support, because the only way that any magazine exists these days is through advertising expenditure. The November edition of African Pilot is the third magazine where we have used the new 3D software to publish a superb digital magazine.
Advertisers can now see the benefits of marketing their products and services to a vast international aviation audience including short videos, picture galleries and actual virtual shops, they will realise that marketing is most important for future profitability. In South Africa and the African continent, African Pilot is the only aviation publication that has purchased the latest software to provide digital enhancement to any advertiser anywhere in the world. At the same time African Pilot is also the only aviation magazine that is easy to read on any digital smart device, because our team understands the importance of ensuring the ease of use in this ‘new normal’ digital age. It is now quite obvious that ALL the other aviation publications are attempting to copy what African Pilot has pioneered, but this was to be expected. However, at least African Pilot publishes correct aviation information such as the calendar of events on a regular basis.
African Pilot’s December 2020 edition
The December edition will feature Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, Drones, Flying Cars and Urban Conectivity. These subjects have fascinated me over the past few years as more ambitious projects come to market. There is no doubt that our future world will be highly connected and far more robotic that ever before as mankind explores opportunities to improve service delivery.
The material deadline for the December edition is on Wednesday 18 November 2020. All editorial content should be sent to me Athol Franz e-mail: email@example.com.
For advertising positions please contact Adrian Munro
Tel: 0861 001130 Cell: 079 880 4359 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Opinion: Serious jail-time on the cards for non-compliant taxpayers
Authored by Roxanna Naidoo and Jashwin Baijoo, Admitted Attorneys, Tax Consulting South Africa
With Government’s draft response being released in the Parliamentary Debate on 13 October 2020, non-compliant taxpayers, be it intentionally or negligently, may soon be facing some serious jail-time.
The draft response proposes a strict, no nonsense approach from the South African Revenue Service (SARS) when it comes to the taxpayer’s compliance, shifting the burden of proof to fall more heavily on the taxpayer than ever before.
The SARS-Treasury team-up
Under the current tax regime, a key element of any offence is that it is committed ‘willfully and without just cause’ by the taxpayer, with negligence resulting in a mere wrap on the knuckles in most instances.
The July 2020 Draft TALAB (Tax Administration Laws Amendment Bill) proposes to change this entirely, by the removal of the term ‘willfully’ from the legislation, taking away one more line of defense to taxpayers across the country. This proposed amendment was met with fierce resistance by tax practitioners and taxpayers alike, opposing the opening of this particular can of worms.
In last week’s proceedings, National Treasury and SARS took the opportunity to shoot their shot, proposing this amendment to the Standing Committee on Finance. Although some leniencies were permitted, the two authorities held their ground on the need for a change in law, more specifically the standards used to measure taxpayers’ behaviour, to enable easier convictions for tax related offences.
Enabling legislative amendments – SARS levels up
Although the proposed amendments will have no impact on the existing sanctions for non-compliance, they will widen the net for SARS to catch taxpayers off-guard and impose these sanctions, for what could be something as simple as a typographical error when completing a return, or any of the other 100 mistakes which may be committed due to human error, which may be viewed as negligent on the part of the taxpayer. It must be noted that ‘intent’ was not entirely done away with, but rather drawn in to permit more severe sanctions in this instance as these acts are borderline tax evasion, where the ‘intent’ is to defraud SARS. Strategically speaking, this is a bold yet brilliant move from the SARS-Treasury team, as the inclusion of ‘negligence’ and retaining of ‘intent’ allows the non-compliance net to be cast wide enough to catch even the smallest fish.
The existing offences are proposed to be split into two categories, being that which requires ‘intent’, where the heavier burden of proof falls on SARS and that which either ‘intent’ or ‘negligence’ will suffice, shifting the weight of the burden more on to the taxpayer than ever before. The existing sanctions, including some serious jail-time and / or a financial fatality in the form of a fine, will remain unchanged, with the case-appropriate sanction being left to the discretion of either SARS (for minor offences) or the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) (in the instance of more severe offences).
The first-mover advantage
To protect yourself from SARS, it remains the best strategy that you always ensure compliance. Where you find yourself on the wrong side of SARS, there is a first mover advantage in seeking the appropriate tax advisory, ensuring the necessary steps are taken to protect both yourself and your bank balance from paying the price for what could be the smallest of mistakes. However, where things do go wrong, SARS must be engaged legally and we generally find them utmost agreeable where a correct tax strategy is followed. As a rule of thumb, any and all correspondence received from SARS should be immediately addressed, by a qualified tax specialist or tax attorney, which will not only serve to safeguard the taxpayer against SARS implementing collection measures, but also being specialists in their own right, the taxpayer will be correctly advised on the most appropriate solution to ensure their tax compliance.
Editor comments: I sincerely believe that the time has come for all South African businesses to consider boycotting SARS. Presently SARS owes me personally in excess of R73K (acknowledged by SARS in writing), but despite the efforts of my company accountant and plenty of correspondence this matter has not been resolved. There is almost no way a person can make an appointment with SARS, unless you are prepared to hold on to the other end of a telephone for more than an hour. Accountants and legal people have told me that there are many persons in exactly the same situation What do we do to rectify this situation? Any advice please!
Picture of the Week
About African Pilot
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View and download African Pilot’s last three (3) 2020 editions.
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Video of the week:
Launch of Wouter Botes’ e-book ‘Flights to Nowhere’
Wouter Botes’ E-book on Flight to Nowhere is available by visiting www.africanpilot.co.za and click on the button provided on the home page. We have provided an option for payment of R60 per download on the page.
AERO South Africa news
Take your business to NEW HEIGHTS this August at the one-stop business to business platform. The platform will be active for 12 months, allowing you to market your products and services to a targeted global General Aviation market and engage with visitors and other exhibitors on the portal. Want to book your booth on the AERO South Africa Virtual Marketplace or simply find out more? Contact one of our team members below to take your business to new heights.
Aero Club of South Africa’s Centenary Yearbook
Produced by John Illsley who is the second master at Pretoria Boys’ High School (I spent five happy years at PBHS), the AeCSA is taking pre-orders for the Centenary Yearbook, to assess the demand for a print run. It will be in the form of a hard and soft cover version as well as a limited-edition leather-bound book on request. Details of the book are available on the AeCSA Website.
Indicative Pricing: – Hard Cover Book – R 400 – Soft Cover Book – R 300 – Leather Bound Book – add +/- R 200 for Novalite & R 500 for Leather. Delivery options are collected at the Rand Airport AeCSA office, or door to door courier service anywhere in South Africa. Courier costs will range between R 100 to R 130 per book dependent on location. Volume purchases are also available should this be required. Once you have registered for a pre-order and the print run is complete, the AeCSA will send an invoice for payment, which once received will have the book dispatched.
To get your pre-order secured, please go to this link. Centenary Yearbook Order form:
If you are not a member and wish to join the Aero Club and any of its sections, feel free to do so http://www.aeroclub.org.za/member-renewals-and-new-memberships/
SOUTH AFRICAN AVIATION NEWS
Successful SA Express bidder cherry-picks airline’s aviation assets
Fly SAX wants to only purchase SA Express’s flight routes, landing rights and aviation-related licences. The offer excludes SA Express assets, including its aircraft fleet, engine parts and spares for the aircraft. These assets will be sold through a public auction on 18 November by GoIndustry DoveBid Africa, an operator of online auctions that was hired by the team of SA Express provisional liquidators.
An entity led by SA Express workers is only interested in buying the airline’s entire shareholding from the government and aviation assets that are lucrative. Fly SAX, which was founded by a group of SA Express workers and recently emerged as successful in the airline’s sale process, wants to only purchase SA Express’s flight routes, landing rights and aviation-related licences. Most of SA Express’s value lies in its aviation licences because, without them, the troubled airline will not be able to restart its operations.
SA Express flights were grounded in February after the airline was successfully placed under involuntary business rescue by the High Court in Johannesburg, following a successful application by a creditor. Without financial support from the government, the business rescue process failed, prompting the court to place SA Express under provisional liquidation in April. The provisional liquidators of SA Express, led by Aviwe Ndyamara will return to the high court on 28 October to convince it that the airline should not be placed under final liquidation. A final liquidation would imply the death of SA Express after 26 years in the skies.
The agreement is expected to detail that Fly SAX will take over the government’s entire SA Express shareholding, for which it will pay about R50-million. By the time the sale agreement is concluded, Fly SAX is required to have secured funding for the SA Express purchase. The SA Express provisional liquidators said in September that the R50-million should be paid to them in the form of a bank guarantee. In other words, Fly SAX will have to enter into an agreement with a lender to foot the bill for the SA Express purchase if it cannot independently raise the money.
What happened in aviation over the past week?
SANDF spent more than R200 million on COVID-19 medication that has not been approved?
After shooting itself in the proverbial foot, the SANDF allegedly tried to cover up the fumble and keep it away from the president’s eyes. A senior official in the South African Military Health Service (SAMHS) has blown the whistle on the military’s procurement of a COVID-19 treatment from Cuba. However, there is just one small problem: the drug in question, Interferon Alpha-2B, has been banned by the health department to treat symptoms of the virus.
If that name sounds familiar, you may remember Ekurhuleni mayor Mzwandile Masina announced in March he would be using the city’s emergency funds to procure a coronavirus vaccine. This was the drug in question. It isn’t completely useless. The medication, manufactured by joint Cuban Chinese company ChangHeber, is registered in South Africa for the treatment of skin cancer. Health experts say there is no evidence to support that Interferon has any positive results in treating COVID-19. Therefore, the SANDF has a stockpile of expensive, unusable and potentially useless medication. To date R35 million has been paid for 130 000 doses with a further R182 million is due for a consignment that has already been delivered. According to a confidential internal report by Major-General Lesley Ford, the chief director for military health service support, the drugs have been stored inside the SAHMS base depot. They cannot be used because the defence force did not make the necessary applications before procuring the drug. The procurement was not captured on the SAHMS inventory, he said and was done without following due process.
The South African Defence Force is collapsing from a lack of budget and here it is spending millions on a drug it cannot use. It has not exactly been a fine representation of military might in recent times and this act of unmitigated buffoonery is just another example. Perhaps this projection of cluelessness works in the SANDF’s favour. In appearing to just be human error, we can then rest easy in the belief that this was a one-time act of stupidity and not a pattern of gross misconduct. If you want to see how acting surprised is helpful and can work as a defence, watch the proceedings at the Zondo commission of inquiry.
What is scheduled for the next few months?
African Pilot’s 2020 calendar
We will publish the aviation calendar within APAnews three months ahead, but you can always visit African Pilot’s website: www.africanpilot.co.za if you would like to obtain the full calendar for the entire year.
26 to 28 October
Airport Show, Airport Security and ATC Forum DWTC, Dubai
Registration is now open for Airport Show, Airport Security and ATC
Forum. FREE registration: https://bit.ly/2SnJ33S
SAPFA spot landing training camp at Brakpan Airfield
Contact Jonty Esser Cell: 082 855 9435
Krugersdorp Flying Club breakfast fly-in
Refer to website www.fakr.co.za WhatsApp to 079 213 9059
EAA Chapter 322 AGM Venue TBA
Contact Neil Bowden Cell: 084 674 5674 E-mail: email@example.com
6 – 8 November
Pretoria Radio Flyers Jet Rally, EDF and Turbine Weekend
Contact Emil Cell: 082 962 2334
Children’s Flight at Orient Airfield – by invitation only
Contact Felix Gosher Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
SAPFA Spot Landing and SA Landing Championships – Brakpan Airfield
Contact Jonty Esser Cell: 082 855 9435
Helevate Helicopter Olympics at Krugersdorp Airfield
Contact Animike Cell: 072 219 3264 E-mail: email@example.com
Panorama Airfield breakfast fly-in
Contact Alan Cell: 083 702 3680
CAASA AGM to be a virtual meeting from 11h00
Contact Sam Keddle E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 011 659 2345
13 to 16 November
Battlefields now in Mossel bay fly-in view poster for details
Contact E-mail: email@example.com Cell: 082 446 9916 or 082 875 5419
27 and 28 November
SAPFA Speed Rally at Springs airfield
Contact Jonty Esser E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Cell: 082855 9435
5 and 6 December
Sports Aerobatics Club Ace of Base TBC
Contact Annie Boon e-mail: email@example.com
As further dates are sent to me, I will continue to update the aviation calendar
I have started preparing the 2021 calendar with assistance from Air Show South Africa and the various sections of the Aero Club of South Africa. Please send me your planned aviation event fixtures for next year so that I may accommodate them on the calendar. Thank you.
AFRICAN AVIATION NEWS
EgyptAir signs MoU with Ghana to establish a new airline in Africa
The Egyptian government has signed an MoU with Ghana to become a strategic partner in establishing a new airline affiliated with the Ghanaian government. Pilot Amr Abu El-Enein, of EGgyptAir Airlines’ chairman & CEO, said: “We are pleased with the confidence of the Ghanaian government in choosing and preferring EGYPTAIR among the major European, Asian and African airlines for this strategic partnership in establishing a new airlines operates from its head quarter in the Ghanaian capital, Accra, and its network of lines extends throughout Africa, connecting it with countries of North and South America.” EgyptAir Maintenance and Engineering already signed a contract with the Ministry of Civil Aviation in Ghana, to establish a centre to provide technical services for all airlines operating to and from Kotoko International Airport in the Ghanaian capital, Accra in 2018.
De Havilland Canada delivers two Dash 8-400 aircraft to Ethiopian Airlines
De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited confirmed the delivery of another two Dash 8-400 aircraft to Ethiopian Airlines, including the airline’s 30th Dash 8-400 aircraft. The 30th aircraft is preparing to depart for Ethiopian’s hub in Addis Ababa, along with aircraft MSN 4615. Ethiopian first welcomed the Dash 8-400 aircraft into its fleet in March 2010. The fleet of more than 155 Dash 8 Series aircraft in Africa includes more than 90 Dash 8-400 aircraft. Worldwide, more than 155 airlines, leasing companies and other organisations have ordered almost 1,300 Dash 8 aircraft.
WORLDWIDE ACCIDENTS AND INCIDENTS
Fatal accident in Hilton KZN claims two lives
Civil Aviation Authority Press Release
The Accident and Incident Investigation Division has dispatched investigators to start the process of gathering information that will assist in establishing the cause or causes of a fatal aircraft accident that happened in Hilton in KwaZulu-Natal on Saturday afternoon, 24 October 2020. Initial reports indicate that the aircraft, with two persons on board, crashed moments after take-off fatally injuring both occupants. The aeroplane, which is a light sports aircraft called Bushbaby, had taken-off from Eva’s Field, an airstrip in Hilton and was heading for Umkomaas Airfield, which is situated at the south coast of KwaZulu-Natal.
Russian Air Force Su-34 crashes during training in Khabarovsk
Russian Eastern Military District press service reported that a Sukhoi Su-34 Fullback fighter-bomber crashed during a routine training mission in Khabarovsk region. “The flight was carried out without armament. The aircraft crashed in a plain intermixed with woodland. No damages on the ground were sustained,” the press release said. There is no information to which unit the aircraft belonged or in which base it was stationed. Both pilots managed to eject safely and there was no danger to their health, according to the release. A commission was sent to the crash site in order to investigate the incident. Su-34 Fullback is an all-weather fighter-bomber with an emphasis on ground attack. Developed in the late 80s to replace Su-24 and Tu-22M3, it is based on Su-27 Flanker multirole fighter and mostly classified as a bomber by the Russian military.
NTSB preliminary report: Cessna 210
On 4 October 2020, a Cessna 210 airplane was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Cedaredge, Colorado. The pilot and one passenger were seriously injured. After the accident, the pilot stated that he and the passenger were departing from Blake Field Airport (AJZ), Delta, Colorado, with 60 gallons of fuel and were en route to Casper, Wyoming. After departure to the north, he climbed along the valley parallel to the grand mesa. The airplane was at least 1,000 feet above ground level and over mountainous terrain when he noticed a gradual reduction in engine RPM. The pilot switched fuel tanks, turned on the fuel boost pump and advanced the throttle, but the engine did not respond. The RPM kept gradually decreasing and he was no longer able to maintain altitude. The pilot found a clearing next to the highway and setup for a forced landing. The airplane landed hard, bounced and came to rest upright next to the highway. A postimpact fire ensued and the pilot and passenger were helped away from the wreckage. The fire consumed the cockpit, fuselage and inboard sections of both wings.
Incorrect altimeter setting results in CFIT
The pilot reported that he entered a left traffic pattern for Runway 30 at the airport in Hobbs, N.M., during night, visual meteorological conditions. Although he thought he had sufficient altitude during the initial phase of the final approach based on his altimeter indication, shortly after turning to final approach, the Piper PA-28R hit terrain. The plane sustained substantial damage to the right wing and fuselage, but the three occupants were not injured. Post-accident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of pre-accident mechanical failures or malfunctions that would have precluded normal operation. The examination did reveal that the altimeter had an incorrect setting, which resulted in an altimeter indication error of +800 feet mean sea level. The pilot stated that he must have had the incorrect altimeter setting for the destination airport.
NTSB preliminary report: North American B25N
On 19 September 2020, a North American B25N was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Stockton, California. One pilot and one passenger sustained serious injuries and one pilot sustained minor injuries. The pilot reported that while enroute to their destination, fuel pressure for the left engine fluctuated and the left engine briefly lost power before regaining power. The pilot stated that he was concerned that they may have had a fuel pump failure or something similar and decided to turn the cross-feed valve on. A short time later, about five miles from their intended destination, fuel pressure fluctuations were observed in both engines, with both engines intermittently losing and then regaining power. Due to multiple residential areas between their location and the airport, the pilot conducted a 180° turn and initiated an off-airport landing. The pilot stated that during the landing roll, he observed a ditch in front of them and was able to get the airplane airborne briefly to avoid it. However, he was not able to avoid a second large ditch. Subsequently, the airplane struck the second ditch, became airborne and impacted the ground in a nose low attitude and all three landing gears collapsed. Both the left and right engines were separated from their respective attach points, whilst the fuselage sustained substantial damage.
WORLD AVIATION NEWS
Emirates SkyCargo to set largest cargo hub for COVID-19 vaccine
In a press release on 22 October Emirates SkyCargo announced that it intends to re-open its Emirates SkyCentral cargo terminal at Al Maktoum International Airport (DWC). In order to consolidate cargo operations and reduce costs, the company had temporarily suspended all operations at the DWC hub from 1 April 2020. The air cargo carrier plans to set the SkyCentral hub as the largest airside facility for cold chain storage and allocation point for the COVID-19 vaccine. According to Emirates SkyCargo release, the hub would enable the carrier to transport vaccines from manufacturing sites all over the world as well as to store them and prepare shipments for further distribution.
Lockheed Martin plans to deliver new US Presidential helicopter next year
As part of a US$5 billion contract, Lockheed Martin said it expects to deliver the first new presidential helicopter next year as part of a $5 billion refreshing of the White House fleet, part of a modest rise in military spending that the company anticipates in coming years. The helicopter is being built by the company’s Sikorsky arm, which has emerged as a key growth driver for Lockheed Martin. The US defence industry has been one of the US economy’s most resilient sectors during the pandemic, with its designation as an essential industry allowing plants to avoid shelter-in-place orders. The Pentagon also has accelerated contract payments to help the sector’s smaller suppliers.
Tecnam P2010 TDI achieves EASA type certificate
The P2010 TDI certification is just the latest achievement of Tecnam’s continuous development and innovation programmes, adding the Diesel / JetA1 engine to the already-wide range of choice of Avgas and Mogas-powered TECNAM aircraft. The P2010 aircraft, with its wide, composite, sleek fuselage design and the all-metal wing and stabilator, has proven to be the perfect platform to match the Diesel engine performances and capabilities. Along with the 180 hp Avgas / Mogas and 215 hp Avgas engines, certification of the 170 hp TDI widens the range of choice for P2010 customers. This latest engine development brings the aviation market unbeatable fuel efficiency and performance: the turbo Diesel / JetA1 powerplant offers an outstanding cruise-fuel burn that ranges from 4.5 USG / hr (17 litres / hr) at 55% power, to 7 USG / hr (27 litres / hr) at 75% power. This provides consistent performance up to 8,000 feet and allows operations up to 18,000 feet, raising the P2010 to ‘new heights’ (for which an optional oxygen system is provided). Moreover, the standard P2010 fuel tanks ensure an unrivalled range in excess of 1,000nm and endurance of up to 15 hours, all monitored through the state-of-the-art standard G1000NXI avionics package.
Gulfstream flies fifth G700 test aircraft
Gulfstream’s fifth G700 flight-test aircraft has taken flight, just three weeks after the fourth G700 flew for the first time. The fifth G700 test aircraft took off Friday and flew three hours and eight minutes, reaching an altitude of 48,000 feet / 14,630 meters and a top speed of Mach 0.935. This aircraft will focus largely on testing avionics.
C-390 Millennium receives Aviation Week Grand Laureate in the defence segment
On 19 October 2020 the Embraer C-390 Millennium multi-mission aircraft, received the Grand Laureate in the Defence Segment and the Laureate Award for the ‘Best new Product’ in Defence from Aviation Week Network. The citation for the award reads, “The first C-390 tanker/transport, the largest and most sophisticated aircraft yet developed by Embraer, was delivered to the Brazilian Air Force in 2019.” The Aviation Week Laureates Awards recognize the extraordinary achievements and innovative personalities that represent the values and vision of the global aerospace community. Programmes honoured with Laureates Awards have changed the way people work and move around the world. Aviation Week continues to recognize the very best accomplishments in the four pillars of our industry: Defence, Commercial Aviation, Space and Business Aviation. The C-390 benefits from a modern fly-by-wire flight control system with integrated technology that lowers the workload of the crew and increases the safety of its operation. Furthermore, the aircraft can refuel other aircraft in flight, with the installation of removable internal fuel tanks. The aircraft can also be refuelled in flight, thus providing greater flexibility for longer missions. An advanced self-defence system increases the aircraft’s survival capability in hostile environments. Equipped with two International Aero Engines V2500 turbofan engines, the latest avionics, a rear ramp, and an advanced cargo handling system, the C-390 is capable of carrying up to 26 metric tons of cargo at a maximum speed of 470 knots (870 km/h), with ability to operate in austere environments, including unpaved or damaged runways. The aircraft can carry troops, pallets, armoured wheeled vehicles and helicopters.
Stunning longevity: US Marines retire Bell AH-1W after 34 years of service
Originally designated as the AH-1T+, the Super Cobra first flew on 16 November 1983 at Bell’s Flight Research Center in Arlington, Texas. Bell delivered the first AH-1Ws to the Marines on 27 March 1986 and delivered the final aircraft in 1999, for a domestic fleet of 179 attack helicopters. Through August 2020, the USMC flew the Super Cobra for 933,614 hours. AH-1Ws remanufactured into AH-1Z Vipers will continue to serve in the United States Marines. The four-bladed Viper replaces the Super Cobra as the successor to the modern attack helicopter platform and provides fully integrated air-to-air and anti-armour capabilities designed to successfully accomplish the broadest array of contemporary missions.
Chinese H-6N strategic bomber
Online footage emerged online of a Chinese H-6N strategic bomber carrying what appears to be a supersonic anti-ship weapon. The existence of such a weapon in the Chinese arsenal had not been officially confirmed. A few pictures and a video shared by a plane spotter on social media showed an H-6N strategic bomber landing. The aircraft is an evolution of the Xian H-6K strategic bomber, itself derived from the Russian Tupolev Tu-16. It boasts an improved range thanks to the addition of an aerial refuelling probe, and attachment points under the airframe to carry large hypersonic weapons. Thus, some speculate that the missile that can be seen attached to the undercarriage of the aircraft is a DF-21 hypersonic anti-ship missile, also known as the CH-AS-X-13. Such a weapon represents a great asset for the People’s Liberation Army against carrier groups. In August 2019, following the broadcast of a DF-21 live firing, a Chinese military source commented to the South Morning China Post: “This is China’s response to the potential risks brought by the increasingly frequent incoming US warplanes and military vessels in the South China Sea.”
Russia tests new hypersonic anti-ship missile for Tu-22M3M bomber
According to a Russian military source, the feared carrier-killer during the Cold War because of its Kh-22 missile, the latest iteration of the Tu-22M will not only receive the updated Kh-32, but also a mysterious, brand new hypersonic missile. The United States seems to be lagging behind when it comes to hypersonic weapons. It is currently developing two different weapons: the HAWC (Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept) and the ARRW (Air-launched Rapid Response Weapon). A third programme, the Hypersonic Conventional Strike Weapon (HCSW), was cancelled due to budget constraints in February 2020.
Uber Elevate and GE Aviation team up
Uber Elevate selected GE Aviation’s Digital Group as an ecosystem partner for their aerial ridesharing programme. The initial phase of this programme will develop requirements for a flight data monitoring program to support electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicles on the Uber platform. “This partnership will help expand our digital innovation as the travel industry continues to evolve,” said Andrew Coleman, general manager of GE Aviation’s Digital Group. We’re able to bring our experience in digital across the travel ecosystem by helping travellers reach their destination safely and efficiently.”
The Uber Elevate team is working toward transforming the world through aerial ridesharing at scale. Initial launch of its Uber Air service is planned for 2023 utilising electric VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) aircraft in Dallas and Los Angeles. Flight Data Monitoring (FDM) is the process of analysing and reviewing routinely recorded flight data. Airlines and operators that adopt Flight Data Monitoring are better able to identify and eliminate potential safety hazards in flight operations. Since its introduction in the airline industry more than 20 years ago, Flight Data Monitoring has been widely credited with reducing incident and accident rates at airlines and aircraft operators where it has been adopted. GE Aviation’s Flight Data Monitoring programme and industry experience working with some of the world’s largest flight data bench marking programmes made this partnership a natural fit for Uber Elevate.
WORLD DRONE NEWS
IAI and Airbus to monitor Mediterranean Sea with drones
Israeli Aerospace Industries (IAI) and Airbus Defence and Space Airborne Solutions (ADAS) were awarded a contract to use IAI Heron unmanned aerial vehicles for monitoring the southern border of the Schengen area, operating from bases on Mediterranean coast. The contract was awarded by Frontex, European Border and Coast Guard Agency, after a series of trials that began in 2018. Under it, IAI and ADAS will operate drones from Greece, with possible additional bases in Italy and Malta. According to Airbus’ press release, the service provided will include UAVs, their payload, communication equipment, mission storage, as well as management and support personnel. IAI Heron is a medium-altitude long-endurance UAV, introduced in 2005 and used by a number of operators, including Indian, German and Brazilian air forces, as well as the United States Navy. The aircraft is capable of continuously conducting aerial surveillance for over 24 hours and carrying a number of different payloads, including a combination of electro-optical and infrared sensors with a maritime patrol radar and an automatic identification system.
Honeywell partners with Pipistrel
Pipistrel has selected Honeywell’s Fly-By-Wire system for the Nuuva V300 cargo UAV, choosing a modern, lightweight, highly capable system with a proven architecture ideally suited for its autonomous cargo UAV. Fly-by-wire computers act as the ‘brains’ of an aircraft’s flight controls by operating them electronically and can be found inside nearly all large fixed-wing aircraft today. The compact version from Honeywell has features derived from decades of expertise in fly-by-wire systems for airliners, but it is much smaller, roughly the size of a paperback book. This product is intended for smaller autonomous cargo and urban air mobility (UAM) vehicles and adds stability and performance by driving flight controls electrically, without heavy hydraulics, control cables or push rods. Pipistrel’s Nuuva V300 is a long-range, large-capacity, autonomous UAV. It will take-off and land vertically with battery power, meaning it does not require a runway and has significantly lower operating costs than helicopters. It can carry loads up to 300 kilograms (around 660 pounds) for more than 300 kilometres (around 186 miles), making it an ideal solution for deliveries to areas traditionally accessible only by helicopter.
Twice Weekly News from African Pilot
Should you miss out on any edition of APAnews, please visit the website: www.africanpilot.co.za and click on the APAnews link on the front page. All past weekly APAnews publications have been archived on the website.
Until Thursday, please be ‘Serious about flying’.
Athol Franz (Editor)