A sustainable future mooted
The Federal Aviation Administration has contacted the world’s fuel producers and requested that they submit proposals for fuel options that would help the aviation industry make the move towards a greater usage of unleaded fuel.
The FAA has said that it is looking to develop a new unleaded fuel by 2018 that would minimize the effect of replacing 100 octane low-lead fuel for most of the general aviation fleet.
“General aviation is vital to the US economy and is an important form of transportation for many Americans,” Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced recently. “We need to work with industry to develop an unleaded fuel that advances aviation safety and improves the environment.”
The FAA will assess the candidate fuels in terms of their effect on the existing fleet, their production and distribution infrastructure, their effect on the environment and toxicology and economic considerations.
Fuel producers had to submit data packages by July: thereafter, the FAA will choose up to ten suppliers to participate in the first stage of laboratory testing at William J Hughes Technical Center, in Atlantic City.
It is understood that the FAA will select perhaps two fuels from the initial phase for phase two engine and aircraft testing. Over the next five years, the FAA is expected to ask fuel producers to submit 100 gallons of fuel for phase one testing and 10,000 gallons of fuel for phase two testing.
Firearm philosophy due for a re-think?
According to reports, during the first six months of this year Transportation Security Administration screeners detected almost 900 guns, either on passengers or in their carry-on bags: this equates to a 30% increase over the same period in 2012. In May, in just one week, 65 were found. That was 30% more than the previous record of 50 guns, set just two weeks earlier.
Overall, in 2012 the TSA found a total of 1,549 firearms on passengers attempting to go through screening, this figure up 17% from the year before. In all, 85% of the weapons intercepted last year were loaded, the most common type being a .38 caliber pistol. Airports in the South and the West, where the American gun culture is more dominant, recorded the greatest number of guns intercepted, according to recent TSA data.
Many passengers found to have guns by screeners are arrested, but this is not always the case: it depends on the gun laws in the state wherein the airport is located. If the state has tolerant gun laws, TSA screeners will frequently hand the gun back to the passenger, recommending that it be locked away.
Efficiency the name of the game in Atlanta
Hartsfield Jackson has been named as the most efficient airport in the world for 2013. This, in fact, will be the tenth year that the airport has been the recipient of the Efficiency Excellence Award, which is given by the Air Transport Research Society, an international association of air transport academics.
Aside from that Seoul, Sydney, Copenhagen and Minneapolis-St Paul all came out top in their respective categories. Further down the list, amongst airports with fewer than 15m passengers per year, Oklahoma City and Geneva were ranked highest.
Considered the most comprehensive independent evaluation of global airport performance, the Air Transport Research Society compares the efficiency of 195 airports and 26 airport groups spread around the Asia Pacific region, Europe and the US. ATRS ranks individual airport efficiency through use of a ratio that divides the output index created by a consistent aggregation of aircraft movements, passenger volumes and non-aeronautical revenue generation activities by the input index, which is the result of a consistent aggregation of full-time equivalent labor and other operational expenses.
Signature buys share in Starlink
Late in June, Signature Flight Support announced that it had agreed to purchase a majority share of Starlink Aviation’s FBO in Montreal. The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions and it is expected to be completed during the third quarter of this year. Starlink Aviation will continue to fully own and operate the real estate and aircraft management, aircraft maintenance, corporate shuttle and aircraft charter services.
Back in 2010 Starlink Aviation signed a licensing agreement with Signature Flight Support in which the FBO became co-branded as Signature Flight Support. As a Signature network location, Starlink Aviation was able to access Signature’s global sales and marketing programs, the Signature Status loyalty program, proprietary customer service and safety training, as well as tap into Signature’s global purchasing power.
The California Department of Industrial Relations’ Division of Occupational Safety and Health recently issued citations to a handler for a total of 23 violations at Los Angeles airport. The department found numerous unsafe working conditions in Menzies Aviation’s operations at the airport, two of which it deemed to be of a “serious” classification.