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Jetex To Manage Falcon Aviation FBO in Dubai

Jetex has signed an agreement to manage the Falcon Aviation FBO and hangar at Dubai’s Al Maktoum International Airport.



Global aviation services provider Jetex has signed an agreement to manage the Falcon Aviation FBO and hangar at Dubai Al Maktoum International Airport.

Considered one of the world’s largest private aviation terminals with more than 32,000 sq ft of passenger lounge space, it offers a dedicated crew facility equipped with a lounge, resting area, workstation, and shower facilities, refreshment bar and coffee lounge, conference rooms, prayer rooms, duty-free shops, on-site immigration and customs service, newly-added en-suite bedrooms, and a kids club. The location is also one of the first in the region to offer helicopter charters, linking Dubai and Abu Dhabi in 30 minutes.

Jetex will also manage the facility’s climate-controlled Code-F hangar, one of the largest in the Middle East, as well as administer its more than three acres of ramp space. Dubai-based Jetex already occupies 16,146 sq ft of space in the airport’s VIP terminal, with an additional 12 acres of dedicated ramp parking space

“I’m pleased to sign the management agreement with Falcon Aviation, which will cement our position as a one-stop solution in the world of private aviation,” said Jetex founder and CEO Adel Mardini, adding the company’s customers will benefit from the enhanced passenger facilities in the terminal. “With the dedicated hangar in Dubai, we will also be able to provide world-class support to aircraft owners and operators.”



Global Aviation Safety Campaign Targets ‘Bunch of Garbage’ to Ease Pilot Overload

When it came time to land at San Francisco on July 7, 2017, the pilots of an Air Canada jet could not recall a critical piece of information buried on



When it came time to land at San Francisco on July 7, 2017, the pilots of an Air Canada jet could not recall a critical piece of information buried on page eight of a 27-page briefing package: the closure of one of the airport’s two runways.

Mistaking the runway they were cleared to land on for the one that was closed, the fatigued pilots chose the wrong reference point and lined up to land on a parallel taxiway instead. They came within seconds of colliding with four planes.

More than three years later, a global campaign has been launched to improve aviation safety by reducing the kind of information overload experienced by the pilots of Air Canada 759.

The reform of the more than century-old system of Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) – originally modeled after Notices to Mariners – is part of a wider push to make aviation simpler, particularly in the wake of two Boeing 737 MAX crashes.

For long-haul flights, there can be up to 200 pages of NOTAMs for pilots to review on paper or an iPad, many of them as irrelevant as general bird hazard warnings, grass-cutting at airports or low-altitude construction obstacles relevant only to helicopters and light planes.

For decades, such standardized bulletins issued by national air navigation authorities – part of a global safety regime managed by countries through the United Nations’ aviation agency – have helped to keep aviation safe.

But the industry has grown so large that the noise created by redundant warnings is increasingly seen as a hazard.

Displayed in unpredictable order and written in a telegraphic code conceived decades ago, the upper-case notices are riddled with byzantine abbreviations that can pose problems even for experienced pilots when they are overworked, particularly for non-native English speakers.

A warning that a navigation aid will be unavailable at Hong Kong International Airport for less than two hours in late May, for example, appears as:

A0290/21 NOTAMN Q) VHHK/QNMAU/IV/NBO/AE/000/999/2219N11355E005 A) VHHH B) 2105252130 C) 2105252329 E) SIU MO TO DVOR/DME ‘SMT’ 114.80 MHZ/CH95X NOT AVBL DUE MAINT.

In the United States, investigators have warned for years that the torrent of data could either overwhelm pilots or just be ignored.

Many are issued to avoid legal liability rather than improve safety, say experts.

“(NOTAMs) are just a bunch of garbage that nobody pays any attention to,” U.S. National Transportation Safety Board Chairman Robert Sumwalt said at a 2018 hearing on the Air Canada incident, which helped spur the global campaign for change.

Baby Steps

Now, the U.N. International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is leading efforts to overhaul the system.

Its first step is to get rid of outdated NOTAMs. Officially, the warnings are supposed to expire after 90 days. But 20% of the more than 36,000 active globally notices are older than that, according to ICAO.

“You can imagine how incredibly frustrating it is for crews because basically what we’re saying is, ‘Here’s 200 pages of junk. In there is one NOTAM that could potentially end your career, or place your aircraft and passengers in danger, and it’s up to you to find it,’” said Mark Zee, the founder of flight operations advisory firm OPSGROUP, who has played a key role in lobbying for change.

The next step, which Zee said was slated for 2022, will prioritize the most important warnings at the top of the briefing package and allow airlines to filter out those not relevant for their crews.

A final step – long overdue, according to pilots – would be to change the format of NOTAMs to make them more reader-friendly.

Airspace NOTAMs, for example, are often given as a set of latitudes and longitudes that are meaningless unless pilots have time to chart them – and they do not, Australian Federation of Air Pilots Safety and Technical Director Stuart Beveridge said.

“So we’ve actually suggested they move into the 21st century and look at upper and lower case, punctuation, plain standardized language, time formats that are not just strings of numbers, and where possible, graphical information,” he said.

While the campaign is promising, it demonstrates the glacial pace of change in global aviation, safety experts say, adding it could take years more before all countries put changes into effect.

In Albania, for example, there is an active NOTAM issued in 2000 that provides pilots with a telephone number to call should they have a Y2K-related communications problem.

“So I’m basically reading about Y2K thinking they can’t possibly mean that thing from 20 years ago that never happened,” Zee said.

“And right at the bottom there’s one that says, for example, no jet fuel available for two weeks. I’ve missed it. Now I’ve flown in and I can’t get fuel to get back out again.”

(Reporting by Jamie Freed in Sydney; additional reporting by Allison Lampert in Montreal; Editing by Tim Hepher and Richard Pullin)

Topics Aviation

For long-haul flights, there can be up to 200 pages of NOTAMs for pilots to review on paper or an iPad, many of them as irrelevant as general bird hazard warnings, grass-cutting at airports or low-altitude construction obstacles relevant only to helicopters and light planes.


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Building the Workforce Part III

Aviation maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) is benefiting from industry efforts to attract more people to aviation maintenance careers but Covid downturn may impact whether workers return.



Technician Shortage Expected as Early as This Year

By Kathryn B. Creedy

  • Increasing demand leads to hiring recovery
  • MRO workforce cuts minimal compared to other sectors
  • Labor shortages, costs remain a serious concern
  • Key people abandoning the industry
  • Covid is cyclicality reminder making others leave
  • Shift in demand may make recovery harder to predict
  • MRO recruiting efforts succeeding in increasing AMT enrollment
  • Schools will have to produce 2700 new graduates to meet demand
  • Acid test will be 2020 enrollment figures
  • Industry doing poor job of recruiting military, capturing only 10%

This article is third in a series evaluating workforce needs in different industry sectors. Parts One and Two dealt with manufacturing.

The technician shortage is expected to re-emerge as early as this year, according to an Oliver Wyman study especially as some unemployed technicians leave the workforce permanently, similar to what has been experienced in the pilot corp covered in the last issue.

The good news, MRO workforces were not as devastated as other disciplines and are estimated to be down just about 3%. The recovery, which Oliver Wyman expects in 2022/23, makes MROs reluctant to lose employees given previous shortfalls.

JSFirm, the industry-leading placement company, reported hiring has already resumed. Its Hiring Trends Survey of hiring professionals, executives, and business owners indicated over 50% are projecting growth in 2021. Additionally, 66% of those surveyed did not cut any jobs in 2020, despite the pandemic. Furthermore, 33% expected to hire in the second quarter 2021 with pilots, maintenance and avionics techs in highest demand.

Published by Kathryn B. Creedy

Kathryn B. Creedy is a veteran aviation journalist and communications strategist. My byline has appeared in CNN Travel, The Points Guy, BBC Capital, Los Angeles Times, Forbes Online, The Washington Post, Flyer Talk, Business Traveler, Business Travel Executive, Afar, Flightglobal, Centre for Aviation, Aviation Week & Space Technology, Low Fare & Regional Airlines, Inflight, Business Airports International, Airports, Centerlines, Regional Gateway, Runway Girl Network and Metropolitan Airport News among others. In 2018, I was cited for the Sapphire Pegasus Business Aviation Award for her work as a business aviation journalist.Created four newsletters, including two web publicationsAuthor: Time Flies – The History of SkyWest Airlines. Consistently received bonuses or commendations throughout my career.Founded Commuter/Regional Airline News, building it to become the bible of the industry. Co-founded C/R Airline News International to cover Europe.Founding editor of Aviation Today’s Daily Brief, VLJ Report.Founding Senior Analyst North America for Centre for Aviation and North American Editor for Low Fare & Regional Airlines and Inflight.Key Words: Aviation, travel, business jets, commercial, aircraft, airlines, publishing, public relations, corporate communications, media specialist, View more posts

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Electric aircraft startup accuses rival of stealing its secrets : by The New York Times News Service Syndicate

Dawson County Journal has national and international news for people of Nebraska and everywhere.



The age of electric planes may still be years away, but the fight for that market is already heating up.

Wisk Aero, a startup developing an electric aircraft that takes off like a helicopter and flies like a plane, on Tuesday sued another startup, Archer Aviation, accusing it of stealing trade secrets and infringing on Wisk’s patents.

The lawsuit brings into public view a dispute between two little-known companies in a business that has become a playground for billionaires. It also entangles giants of aviation and technology. Wisk is a joint venture of Boeing and Kitty Hawk, which is financed by Larry Page, who co-founded Google. Archer’s investors include United Airlines, which is a major Boeing customer and plans to buy up to 200 aircraft from the startup.

The niche market for electric vehicles and planes has become frenzied in recent months as so-called blank-check companies, which have little more than a stock market listing and a pot of cash, have snapped up fledgling businesses with little or no revenue, let alone profits. Investors in the blank-check firms — formally known as special purpose acquisition companies, or SPACs — are hoping to acquire businesses that they believe could follow Tesla’s recent trajectory on the stock market. To entice those investors, startups such as Archer promise top-notch technology and optimistic business plans.

In its lawsuit, Wisk contends the intellectual property that Archer promoted as part of its merger was stolen by engineers the company hired from Wisk.

Filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, the lawsuit accuses two engineers of downloading thousands of files containing confidential designs and data before leaving Wisk to join Archer. Wisk accused a third engineer of wiping history of his activities from his computer before leaving for Archer.

“Wisk brings this lawsuit to stop a brazen theft of its intellectual property and confidential information and protect the substantial investment of resources and years of hard work and effort of its employees and their vision of the future in urban air transportation,” the lawsuit says.

Archer denied wrongdoing.

“It’s regrettable that Wisk would engage in litigation in an attempt to deflect from the business issues that have caused several of its employees to depart,” Archer said in a statement. “The plaintiff raised these matters over a year ago, and after looking into them thoroughly, we have no reason to believe any proprietary Wisk technology ever made its way to Archer. We intend to defend ourselves vigorously.”

Archer also said it had placed an employee accused in the suit on paid leave “in connection with a government investigation and a search warrant issued to the employee, which we believe are focused on conduct prior to the employee joining the company.”

Archer said it and three employees who had worked with the individual had been subpoenaed in that investigation and were cooperating with the authorities. Wisk described the case as a criminal investigation and said it was cooperating with the government.

Intellectual-property lawsuits are not uncommon in quickly developing and promising industries — as Page knows well. In one recent case, Waymo, a company owned by Google’s parent, Alphabet, accused one of its former employees and Uber of stealing trade secrets to gain an advantage in the race to develop autonomous cars. The companies settled the case in 2018, and the former Waymo employee, Anthony Levandowski, a former confidant of Page’s, was sentenced in 2020 to 18 months in prison. Former President Donald Trump pardoned him in January.

Archer announced its merger in February with a SPAC, Atlas Crest Investment, in a deal that valued the company at $3.8 billion. Wisk said its suspicions were confirmed at that time when Archer released a presentation that contained designs similar to those in a Wisk patent filing.

Wisk says its Cora aircraft can fly a pair of passengers about 25 miles at a speed of about 100 mph. Archer says it is developing an aircraft that can carry up to four people on a 60-mile trip, topping out at 150 mph. Both aircraft are being designed to fly autonomously.

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It is unclear whether Wisk’s concerns came up in Atlas’ evaluation of Archer before the two struck a deal. The SPAC is backed by an affiliate of the investment bank Moelis & Co., which leaned on its bankers and others to help vet Archer, bank founder Ken Moelis told The New York Times in an interview when announcing the transaction.

“We had 35, 40 people on this — and we attacked this like venture growth would or anybody else,” Moelis said. “And we did it fast, too.”

A spokeswoman for Moelis declined to comment.

Other companies trying to make electric aircraft include Joby Aviation, which announced a $6.6 billion deal with a SPAC led by LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman in February, and German startup Lilium, which went public last month by merging with a SPAC led by former General Motors executive Barry Engle.

Those deals are only a small sliver of the SPAC activity this year, as investors, celebrities and athletes have all raced to partake in Wall Street’s new favorite toy. So far this year, 299 SPACs have raised $97 billion, according to SPAC Research — more than in all of 2020.

But regulators and some investors say more scrutiny is needed. The Securities and Exchange Commission published two notices last month warning companies considering merging with SPACs to ensure that they are ready for all the legal and regulatory requirements being a public company entails. Many investors known as short sellers, who specialize in betting that share prices of companies are bound to fall, have targeted SPACs such as Atlas Crest, which is among the 20 most-shorted SPACs.

The market for electric aircraft is in its infancy but holds huge promise. The prospect of “Jetsons”-like flying vehicles has inched closer to reality in recent years thanks to advances in battery and aircraft design. A high-stakes race to build the first viable electric plane is underway, and some airlines are betting that such vehicles can help them reach their goals of eliminating or offsetting their greenhouse-gas emissions.

United CEO Scott Kirby said the Archer aircraft are unlikely to be used for commercial flights but are ideal for short-distance trips to and from an airport.

“They’re not only more environmentally friendly; they’re far quieter than a helicopter,” Kirby said Tuesday at an event hosted by the Council on Foreign Relations. “And because they have 12 rotors, they’re, I believe, going to ultimately be safer.”

Still, widespread use of electric air taxis is probably years away. Such aircraft may never become more than a luxury used by very rich people because businesses and governments may come up with far-cheaper ways to transport people without emissions.


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