NASA still can't repair the kind of shuttle wing damage thought
to have destroyed Columbia on re-entry. That type of repair, once
thought easy to accomplish, is now the biggest obstacle to the
shuttles' return to flight, proposed for next year.
The Columbia Accident Investigation Board (CAIB) found that foam
debris from the space plane's external fuel tank probably punched a
hole in the orbiter's left wing. That allowed super-heated gas to
breach the heat shielding and caused Columbia to break up in
Chicago Mayor Richard Daley has a problem. The man who bulldozed
Meigs Field earlier this year with the intention of turning the
lakeside airport into a park doesn't have enough money to pay for
the pet project.
To do so means increasing mooring fees along Lake Michigan and
increasing local property taxes to fund the Parks Department.
Enter the Friends of Meigs Field (FOM). They're here to help. The
group presented its proposal, “Parks and Planes,”
at the Chicago Park District board budget hearings Thursday,
following up with a request to aviation enthusiasts everywhere to
express their support through a special message to the board,
accessed from its website. FOM wants to combine a re-opened airport
with new parkland—the Bessie Coleman Skypark—a
It's the latest shot fired in a takeover battle that's becoming
more and more shrill. Atlantic Coast Airlines has sent a letter to
stockholders regarding connection with Mesa Air Group consent
Mesa announced back in October
it wants to take over ACA and boot the entire board of
Now, ACA is writing stockholders, asking for their support in
fighting off the hostile takeover bid.
In the wake of the Midwest Air
crash in Charlotte (NC) earlier this year, the
Charlotte Observer has been looking into watchdog
complaints about commercial airline maintenance. Now, the paper has
dug up a series of Government Accounting Office (GAO) and other
federal government reports citing a number of incidents over the
past 18 years.
Beginning in 1985, the GAO, the watchdog of Congress, reported on
regional differences among FAA safety inspections. Two years later,
the GAO pondered maintenance in a deregulated airline economy,
suggesting the "fiercely competitive, deregulated environment"
The pilot of a Cessna 441 that went down shortly after take-off
from Birmingham International Airport (AL) Wednesday has been
identified through dental records. The Jefferson County Coroner's
office says 56-year old John Wayne DeLamater and 44-year old Melia
Warrington were killed when the aircraft crashed minutes after
take-off, at around 2:21 pm Wednesday. The Cessna was on its way to
Venice (FL) after Ms. Warrington visited with a sick relative in
Alabama. She was from Osprey (FL). DeLamater was from Gulfport
The cause of the accident is still under investigation. A company
contracted by the NTSB removed the wreckage Friday.
"It was clear to us that they (shuttle engineers) have some
things that they are still having to work. But they have ways to
work on them and at this point aren't saying they can't make
Source: Former astronaut Richard Covey, who
co-chairs a shuttle oversight group mandated by the Columbia
Accident Investigation Board. NASA has so far been stumped in
coming up with a way to patch hull breaches, like the one that
caused the disintegration of Columbia as it re-entered the
atmosphere last February.
Statement by the President George W. Bush, Friday, December
Today, I have signed into law H.R. 2115, the "Vision 100 --
Century of Aviation Reauthorization Act." The Act is designed to
strengthen America's aviation sector, provide needed authority to
the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and enhance the safety
of the traveling public.
Aerosonic Corporation has been awarded a multi-year contract to
design and manufacture electronic standby instruments for Cessna's
new Citation Mustang.
"This award represents another milestone in a relationship between
Cessna and Aerosonic that spans 30 years," stated Mark Perkins,
Aerosonic's Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing. "We
are proud and privileged to be launching a new product line on an
aircraft that has such tremendous market appeal with a world class
aircraft manufacturer like Cessna."