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You may have missed it, but Dynon, the EAA, and the FAA made a major announcement at Sun n Fun this year...an announcement that has the potential to make life significantly better for GA pilots everywhere:
If you're been involved with aviation for very long, you're probably familiar with these famous words attributed to Ed Thompson. While we like to joke about how wise they are, the truth is that most of us are probably so desperate to get into the air that we'll fly whatever we can get our hands on.
I recently wrote an article about the announcement of the Cobalt Co50 Valkyrie. It's a gorgeous airplane that promises to top the piston single market with a speed of 260 knots...and it seemed to appear out of nowhere as a working prototype.
Just over a month ago, Jeff Bezos' space tourism company, Blue Origin, successfully landed the booster stage of a rocket after launch. This was a major step toward making space travel more affordable. Elon Musk's company SpaceX has just taken that advancement a step further by landing the booster stage of a Falcon 9 rocket after launching a payload into orbit.
A few months ago I wrote an article aimed at helping military pilots convert their logbooks to civilian standards, specifically in preparation for airline interviews. I had occasion to share it with a group of pilots on Facebook and received a lot of positive feedback. The moderators of that group thought enough of the post to include it in their quarterly newsletter, The Pilot Network Quarterly. You can read my article in TPNQ, along with past editions of the newsletter for free on iBooks.
Remember when you took the SAT or ACT and started getting flyers in the mail from colleges all over the country? It's flattering at first, but as more and more flyers start to pile up, you start to wonder how desperate those colleges must be. I applied to (and got hired by) a major US airline last year. Apparently my name got sold to someone because I've started receiving flyers from regional airlines.
The flyer I got in the mail yesterday shocked me. It offered me a $50 Amazon gift card if I'd just show up to an interview.
When someone asks: "What makes airplanes fly," the running joke is to answer: "Money." While a lot of people and companies are able to earn a living in aviation, there's no doubt that it's expensive. We're doing a lot to try to reduce the costs of flying because we're worried that the pilot population is shrinking too much. We're using new regulations and new technology to make aircraft more efficient and it's absolutely paying off.
However, everyone once in a while someone decides to throw economy and advancement out the window and do something wild with aviation. The example I just ran across is the luggage company, Rimowa. They're going to resume production of the Junkers F-13. In this day and age, that airplane is almost completely useless...and I'm thrilled by what they're doing!