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Articles for category Opinion-Editorial




Sep
10
2021

Executive Watch -John Wyllie, Flightcell CEO

Posted by Admin

Flightcell’s founding CEO, John Wyllie, calls from the northern tip of his native town of Nelson, New Zealand, at the northern tip of South Island, perhaps the most majestically picturesque place on Earth. The island has been the location for epic fantasy/adventure movies like The Lord of the Rings and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. What Flightcell does seems magical too. They link and track aircraft around the globe, allowing pilots and their flying machines to communicate with a vast array of terrestrial and satellite systems. The Kiwi company of 21 employees punches far above its size and has built a global reputation as the go-to organization for avionic communication solutions. You may have heard of some of their approx. 4,000 customers: the U.S. Air Force, Army, Navy, and Marines, California Highway Patrol, Texas Department of Public Safety, Cal Fire, Royal Flying Doctors, Colombian Air Force, and U.S. Department of State. Yes, they have street—and air—cred. [Read More...]



Tags: Flight Tracking Flightcell Flightcell DZM satcom
Categories: categoryCompany Profiles categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHuman Interest



Sep
06
2021

Bridging the Gap: The Power of Mentorship

Posted by Admin

No matter what data set or latest editorial piece you refer to, the one common theme we see reminds us that the professional pilot is in high demand in today’s aviation market. The sculpting of a professional pilot has a myriad of challenges, both for the pilot in development and the educators that pave the way. Coupled with the fact that pilots “don't know what they don’t know” until they are introduced to a specific concept or technique (hopefully correctly), and the mere fact that helicopter operations are frequently operating in environments with numerous unknowns, having a properly equipped pilot with the necessary skill sets is apropos for success.  [Read More...]



Tags: First Officers Pilot Mentoring Pilot Training
Categories: categoryTraining categoryOpinion-Editorial



Aug
30
2021

Editor's Letter - 56 Seconds to Live/Training and Technology

Posted by Admin

In February of this year, the United States Helicopter Safety Team, with support from Helicopter Association International, Airbus, and Frasca International produced a short video titled 56 Seconds to Live.  In this chilling video, the viewer is taken on a dramatized journey, which shows a pilot making all the wrong decisions during the process of accepting a flight, which then leads to an IIMC condition, culminating in his death. At the very end his spouse and child stand at his grave. Given the challenging nature of helicopter air ambulance (HAA) work, IIMC accidents have always been a large part of HAA accident stats over the decades. I often wonder: are we getting better as an industry? [Read More...]



Tags: Editors Letter Rotorcraft Pro Editor Lyn Burks
Categories: categorySafety categoryOpinion-Editorial



Jun
28
2021

Law Enforcement is Still a Noble Profession

Posted by Admin

Ever since my daughter went into a high school criminal justice magnet program in the ninth grade, she wanted to work in law enforcement (LE). She recently had several events come together, which kicked off the career that she has worked hard for. She finished an internship with a federal LE agency, graduated with her bachelor’s degree, and was accepted into another university’s graduate program for LE intelligence. Within two weeks of graduation, she was hired by an LE agency. I’ve always been a fan of LE. Although not directly in it, I’ve been tied to that field for much of my career in more ways than one. Having said that, given the current political environment, and my own child’s entry into the field, I couldn’t help but wonder: Is now a good time to be entering LE? [Read More...]



Tags: APSON 2021 Law Enforcement Helicopters Rotorcraft Pro Editor Lyn Burks
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial



May
24
2021

Military to Civilian - Compensation Packages

Posted by Admin

When I got my first job out of the military, I was just happy with getting a job and a pretty good salary. It wasn't until new hires that came after me, did I hear about the compensation packages that they got when they were hired. Compensation packages refer to the combination of wages, salaries, and benefits an employee receives in exchange for work. Compensation may include hourly wages or an annual salary,  bonus payments, incentives, and benefits (such as group health care coverage, disability insurance, and contributions to a retirement savings account). A total compensation package can have several components and tend to vary by employer. [Read More...]



Tags: Civilian Aviation Military to Civilian Helicopter Mechanics Military to Civilian Pilots Military to Civilian Transition Aviation
Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryOpinion-Editorial



May
17
2021

MAINTENANCE MYTHS

Posted by Admin

A myth is generally defined in this context as a widely held but false belief or idea. And when it comes to aircraft maintenance, a majority of aircraft owners and a smaller number of mechanics seem to thrive in that mythical maintenance world. So pop in your copy of Magic Carpet Ride and let’s take a journey down the yellow brick flight line to unlock some of those long-held maintenance myths.  MYTH: The mechanic is responsible for maintaining the aircraft. No. While a mechanic is responsible for the specific work they perform, in reality, it is the owner who is held responsible overall by the FAA for maintaining the aircraft in airworthy condition. The feds even conveniently stated that in black and white in FAR Part 91.403(a).  So if you think you get a pass on all regulatory maintenance infractions, you may want to think again and be more involved in the maintenance processes that take place on your aircraft.   And just when you think you have that myth resolved, the owner is also responsible for compliance with the requirements of Part 39, Airworthiness Directives. This is also stated in Part 91.403(a). So while your APIA may check for the actual AD compliance during every Annual inspection, the owner is the one who is accountable to the Man. [Read More...]



Tags: Helicopter Maintenance Helicopter Mechanic Duties and Responsibilies Helicopter Mechanic Liability
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryRegulatory



Apr
19
2021

URBAN AIR MOBILITY

Posted by Admin

NASA says it best. It’s gonna take a revolution! They call it revolutionary vertical lift technology (RVLT), and how right they are. According to a PowerPoint presentation from Johnson, Silva (2018), a revolution in design, sizing, propulsion, blade design, rotor performance, geometry, and handling qualities will be required for urban air mobility (UAM) to evolve to a viable and sustainable system. Additionally, they say, their baseline system must “design aircraft, which will produce less than 50% of the climate-impacting emissions of today’s fielded technology” and those aircraft must be whisper quiet. UAM is an obvious next-step in urban transportation systems. After Lyft and Uber run their course, what’s next in urban mobility? Elon Musk is headed underground with his tunnels. But aren’t tunnels just an upgrade to the London tube system? What’s left is above ground. Disney likes the Monorail. China and Japan are both strong proponents of a monorail system and are heavy users as well. Moreover, whereas monorails are technically “above ground”, they are still attached to the surface. That leaves the airspace directly above the ground, but not quite high enough to enter the national airspace system (NAS), as a last frontier.  [Read More...]



Tags: revolutionary vertical lift technology (RVLT) urban air mobility (UAM) urban transportation systems urban unmanned aerial system (UAS)
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHelicopter Sectors



Apr
12
2021

Maintenance Minute - Equipping Yourself for Success with Customer Service

Posted by Admin

I recall starting the day with excitement, yet nervous anticipation as my civilian helicopter maintenance career began. As a young man, I didn't have a taller-than-me stacked toolbox filled with every possible combination of tools one can imagine. What I had was a two-drawer portable toolbox that was stocked with the bare minimum. When my new boss and future mentor saw this, he asked, “What are you going to do with those plow tools?” By his raw honesty, he certainly succeeded in his intent to change my perspective.  If I was going to be a professional aircraft mechanic, then I had to be equipped for the role. [Read More...]



Tags: Helicopter Industry Customer Service Helicopter Industry Professionalism Helicopter Maintenance
Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryOpinion-Editorial



Apr
05
2021

Meet A Rotorcraft Pro - David Luke, Vice President of Night Flight Concepts

Posted by Admin

RPMN: What is your current position? I’m co-founder and vice-president of Night Flight Concepts and FAA repair station accountable manager. RPMN: Tell me about your first flight or experience with helicopters. I was an enlisted specialist, E-4, in the U.S. Army as a medium lift helicopter mechanic on CH-47Ds. It was 1994, while assigned to Bravo Company (Varsity) 7th Battalion, 101st Aviation Brigade out of Ft. Campbell, Kentucky, when I was selected above my peers to go to a flight crew-member board consisting of our unit flight standards and flight platoon sergeants. After being accepted, I was assigned to the 1st flight platoon and designated a crew chief and taken on my first flight around the military reservation on a routine training flight. It was the most electrifying experience I had in my life at the time. The combination of perilousness, adventure, excitement, riskiness all at once changed my life forever. I was hooked. [Read More...]



Tags: David Luke Night Flight Concepts
Categories: categoryCompany Profiles categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHuman Interest



Mar
08
2021

Executive Watch - Randy Rowles, President of Helicopter Institute

Posted by Admin

You likely know Randy Rowles from his training commentary, “Checkride,” in every Rotorcraft Pro issue. However, you may not know that when Rowles takes off his ‘press’ hat, there are more distinguished hats in his closet: he is president and owner of Helicopter Institute Inc., the vice chairman of the Helicopter Association Board of Directors, an FAA designated pilot examiner, and a regular teacher at the annual HeliSuccess career conference. Yes, just as Forest Gump wore “lots of shoes” Rowles wears, and has worn, lots of hats. The difference between them is that Forest was mostly just a witness to history, whereas Rowles has actively participated in and contributed to the rotorcraft industry, especially in the helicopter training sector. “I love the training space,” he says. [Read More...]



Tags: Helicopter Institute Randy Rowles
Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHuman Interest


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