The UK government has announced that it has given the greenlight to ‘Project Skyway’, a plan to create a ‘drone superhighway’ between the Midlands and the Southeast.
Garmin’s latest app update is out just in time for Oshkosh and adds a nice selection of new planning features. There’s a new graphical weight and balance view, map search capability and an update to the interactive measuring tool on the map. Pilots flying in Europe will also benefit from the inclusion of Eurocontrol Aeronautical Information Publications (AIPs), an enhancement to French NOTAMs information and added support for the uAvionix Sky Echo 2 receiver.
Graphical weight & balance
The weight and balance feature in the app includes a new graphical view, making it quick and easy to enter the weight for each station and visualize the results on a dynamic CG envelope chart. Simply tap one of the pilot, passenger, cargo or fuel positions and enter the weight for that station:
The same fuel customization options are included in the new graphical view and provides an instant landing weight and CG computation. You can also switch the CG envelope view to a Station Chart options, which neatly shows the location of each loaded item in relation to the calculated CG:
This new graphical weight and balance view will display by default for your existing aircraft profiles, provided that you previously entered the weight and balance details for your airplane. You can also quickly create a new weight and balance profile from the templates included in the app. You’ll just need to add the specific basic empty weight and CG for your particular model
Graphical weight and balance requires the Garmin Pilot Premium add-on subscription.
Map search is a powerful new tool that allows you to quickly search for airports, navaids and intersections by identifier or name. It is accessed from the magnifying glass icon on the right side of the menu bar:
It incorporates Garmin’s Fast Find predictive logic to suggest results, which is the same popular feature found in Garmin’s panel-mount avionics. Start typing and the app will prioritize search results closest to your nearest location:
Distance Measuring Tool
Garmin improved the usability of the distance measuring tool to display touch points just below the rule, which are shown as two black rings. This allows you to accurately control the length and position of the tool without obscuring the view. To activate the tool, tap and hold on the map with two fingers:
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Airlines should be worried by the pressure to decarbonise but not fear it means the end of flying, according to environmental group Transport & Environment.
Chief executive William Todts insisted: “We can have transport and the environment. The problem is not transport, it’s pollution.”
He argued: “The problem with aviation is the size of emissions and that we don’t have the regulations or tools to bring them down. As emissions in the rest of the economy go down, aviation’s share is going to go up and up. That is what makes environmentalists, regulators and governments nervous.”
Appearing on a webinar hosted by European air traffic management body Eurocontrol, Todts agreed “there is too much flying”.
But he said: “You can say the same about driving and ordering stuff on Amazon. As long as we haven’t got rid of the carbon emissions in these products and processes, we consume too much.”
Asked if he supports a tax on flying, Todts said: “In principle, a frequent flier tax is a good idea. If you fly a lot, you or your company should pay a bit more and that can be used to help clean up the sector.
“It is rich people who fly most. It’s possible for these people to pay a bit more.”
But he added: “People seem to think if we have a tax on short-haul flights, we’ve solved the problem. That is false. This is a long-haul problem. Eurocontrol data shows how big a problem long-haul flights are.”
European air traffic management body Eurocontrol reported last year that the 6% of flights over 4,000km create 52% of airlines’ CO2 emissions.
Todts noted pressure to decarbonise from major companies, saying: “We’ve seen with the pandemic that we can do business without getting on a plane all the time.
“Companies are going to be obliged to report on their carbon emissions and, for a lot of companies, flights are a significant share of their emissions. There is a going to be a lot of pressure to cut back.
“Business travel is not going to return to what it was in 2019.”
He added: “These corporations are big buyers. They have clout with the airlines. That is why Air France and Lufthansa are getting more serious about sustainability. Their corporate customers are demanding it. If I was the airlines, I would be worried.
“Some people in aviation think sustainability is going to go away. It’s not, it’s only going to become bigger.”
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SAFIR-Med, a project that is part of the SESAR Joint Undertaking, recently received authorization to perform a drone flight beyond visual line of sight over a populated area in Belgium.
The selection of Eamonn Brennan in the summer of 2017 to lead Eurocontrol signaled a meaningful change at the Brussels-based intergovernmental organization that coordinates the air traffic control system of over 40 states across Europ
The European Commission has proposed a return to the pre-Covid 80:20 ‘use it or lose it’ airport slot rule in the coming winter season, but with exceptions in the case of significant air-travel disruption.
Improving air traffic management is widely seen as the ripest near-term initiative that aviation can take to reduce its carbon footprint.