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Is aircraft MRO personnel supply outpaced by new technologies?
Aviation Pros
The recent flight testing of the new, environmentally friendly Boeing ecoDemonstrator 787 has definitely been a glorious moment for both aviation technicians and eco-activists. Unfortunately, according to the newest Oliver Wyman MRO survey, currently only 20 percent of companies consider investing in new technology as a way to adapt to challenges, connected with implementation of such innovations within the industry.
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Jury award raises importance of aircraft maintenance, inspections
By Ryan Clark
A California jury recently found an airplane mechanic liable for the crashing death of a Napa physician, awarding the victim's family $13.3 million. This decision effectively flies in the face of a previous National Transportation Safety Board finding that initially blamed the tragedy on pilot error. The jury's decision once again raises the importance of regular aircraft maintenance and preemptive inspections.
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Swiss aircraft maintenance firm is latest to cut jobs over franc
Aircraft maintenance firm SR Technics said it would cut as many as 250 jobs, the latest firm to slash positions in Switzerland amid a surge in the franc after the central bank dropped a cap on the currency. The move, the second sizable round of job losses disclosed recently, shows that firms in Switzerland are now making deeper cuts to protect their profits from a soaring franc than merely cutting working hours, asking suppliers for discounts, and paying some staff in euros instead of costly Swiss francs.
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    The world turns on turn of a wrench — Save aviation workforce (Aviation Week)
The cold facts for aircraft maintenance teams in extreme weather (Aviation Week)
Ex-pilot warns over 'toxic plane fumes' ahead of inquest (BBC)
GE Aviation invests millions in new jet engine (Aviation Pros)
FAA certifies Genuine Hawker Winglets for Hawker 400XPR upgrade (Beechcraft)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.

Mechanic worked on bombers during WWII
Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Lennon Jordan was just out of high school when he enlisted in the Army Air Forces just after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. During World War II, the St. Augustine native was stationed at Chatham Field in Savannah, Georgia, and he served as a B-24 mechanic until the war's end. Post-military, he studied general agriculture at the University of Florida before becoming a hardware salesman in Polk County.
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Southwest maintenance glitch shows complexity of inspections
Southwest Airlines canceled about 100 flights after the airline realized some planes hadn't received routine inspections, but safety experts said the rudder system at stake would be used only if several other pieces of equipment had failed first. Southwest briefly grounded 128 of its Boeing 737-700 aircraft after discovering that maintenance checks hadn't been conducted on a backup hydraulic system for the rudder, which helps steer the plane.
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BASF provides light weight solution for noise reduction in aircraft
BASF Corporation America
BASF Aerospace Materials responds to rising demands for improved noise reduction with the easy to install lightweight Basotect® UL melamine foam for thermal and acoustic insulation in sidewall panels and bulkhead structures. Basotect is a flexible, open cell foam with high sound absorbing capacity, good thermal insulation properties and an ultra-low density of 6 g/l (0.37 lb/ft3).
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Promoted by BASF Corporation America

First 3-D printed jet engine made in Australia
The world's first 3-D printed jet engine — a breakthrough for aerospace manufacturing and beyond — took the spotlight at the Avalon Airshow in Australia. Monash University in Melbourne and Amaero Engineering partnered to develop the engine to show how the technology can make a complex machine in a fraction of the time taken in traditional manufacturing. They garnered global attention from aerospace manufacturers, defense contractors and military entities visiting the expo, which is taking place in Geelong.
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Wireless sensors make aircraft maintenance more efficient
The FLITE-WISE project has developed new wireless sensors to facilitate the constant monitoring of European aircrafts. The new system, which is expected to bring both cost and weight down, will be commercialized within the next three years. Some 842 million passengers took a flight in the EU-28 in 2013. With such mind-bending figures, it hardly comes as a surprise that airplane safety is continuously monitored, with rules that keep being reviewed and improved based on the latest technologies and scientific knowledge.
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Continental's alternative fuel engine certified
General Aviation News
Continental Motors' IO-360-AF — alternative fuel — engine model has received type certification from the FAA. The 6-cylinder IO-360-AF is certified for standard 100LL as well as unleaded 91UL avgas now available in several countries. Flight Design is expected to take delivery of the first certified engine in the second quarter of the year for its four-seat aircraft, the C4.
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Dassault Falcon 8X starts flight-test campaign
Dassault's new flagship, the 6,450-nm Falcon 8X, made its maiden flight recently. With test pilots Eric Gérard and Hervé Laverne at the controls, Falcon 8X S/N 01 took off at 2 p.m. local time from Bordeaux Mérignac airport and landed at 3:45 p.m. The maiden sortie took place seven weeks after the rollout ceremony. During the inaugural flight, the trijet leveled off at 5,000 feet and raised its landing gear before beginning flight handling maneuvers and system tests at 15,000 feet. It later climbed to FL400, accelerating to Mach 0.80. "We reached each of the performance objectives set for the first mission and, in a few cases, surpassed goals," Gérard said.
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How can fuel affect the aviation and marine industries?
By Ryan Clark
Nothing affects the transportation industry quite like fuel. Whether it's price, type or scarcity, the specter of gas always looms heavy over the industry of planes and boats. While states across the nation contemplate raising taxes on gas to pay for infrastructure repairs, airlines are experiencing higher-than-expected profits. It seems, now more than ever, low gas prices are helping alleviate pain at the pump, while also pushing economic and political movement forward. So why are so many in the transportation industry unhappy?
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Trade Shows & Conventions Events
Date Event Location
March 3-5 Heli-Expo (Helicopter Association Int'l) Orlando, Florida; Booth #133
March 5-7 Women in Aviation Dallas, Texas
March 19-21 Aero Expo Toluca, Mexico
March 29-31 AAAA Army Aviation Assoc. of America Nashville, Tennessee; Booth #828
March 30-31 Minnesota Aviation Maintenance Conf. Brooklyn Center, Minnesota
April 8 AEA, Aircraft Electronics Assoc Convention Dallas, Texas
April 14-16 MRO Americas Miami, Florida; Booth #4707
April 21-23 WATS/RATS Orlando, Florida; Booth #211
April 27-29 Cessna Operators Conference Wichita, Kansas
April 28-30 ALEA Regional Safety Seminar - Northeast Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
May 5-7 NBAA Maintenence Managers Conference Portland, Oregon
May 11-14 Regional Airline Association (RAA) Cleveland, Ohio; Booth #307
May 13-14 Business Aviation Safety Seminar (BASS) Weston, FL
May 19-21 European Business Aircraft Assn (EBACE) Geneva Switzerland
June 25 NBAA Regional Forum in Teterboro Teterboro, NJ
Aug. 12-14 OBAP (Organization for Black Aerospace) Washington, DC
Sept. 17 NBAA Regional Forum in St. Louis St. Louis, Missouri
Oct. 6-8 Helitech London, United Kingdom; Booth #K30
Oct. 13-15 ERAA General Assembly Berlin, Germany; Booth #B24
Nov. 8-12 Dubai Air Show Dubai, United Arab Emirates; Booth #1642


PAMA Mx News Watch
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Ryan Clark, Transportation Editor, 202.684.7160   
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