Passing The Cup

World Leader It’s a question that’s easily answered for celebrities, business leaders and heads of state, but how do you get between engagements when you’re a pre-eminent trophy…? Okay, you may not have devoted that much brain space to the issue before now. And I know that not everyone is obsessed with soccer. But with 209 participating countries, an expected TV audience of over 1 … Continue reading Passing The Cup

Smarter Learning

‘Smart flight training’ doesn’t just mean glass cockpits and electric airplanes. With ‘Skynotes’, career educator and CFI Amy Labus-Olson is re-casting instruction as an up-to-date education service. From the ground up There’s an old saw that says you’re not ready to fly until the weight of the paperwork equals the weight of the aircraft. Okay, so the rise of digital devices has made that problem … Continue reading Smarter Learning

Dawn’s early light

Merci beaucoup, Albert Kahn Long before the convenience of high speed Kodachrome colour film, and even before hand-tinting black-and-white images became a thing, the Lumière Brothers (of motion picture fame) created an ingenious colour photography process called Autochrome. Based on glass plates coated in specially dyed potato starch grains behind a conventional silver emulsion, Autochrome Lumière was patented in 1903 and remained the pre-eminent colour process … Continue reading Dawn’s early light

Firing up

Aviation culture If you’ve been following airscape for a while, you’ll know that January is hardly the most productive time of year. A combination of having kids home for the holidays and Adelaide’s furnace-fierce summer weather makes writing difficult, to say the least. Happily things are returning to normal now. And one way or another, I’m planning to make 2018 a pivotal year. For now, … Continue reading Firing up

Spread your wings

How to make the most of flight training A few weeks back (okay, several weeks now) I received the best kind of email – a query about flight schools from a reader contemplating starting in for her pilot’s licence. I love the idea of people wanting to become pilots. The magic, the self-discipline, the sensation and the satisfaction are all hard to beat. It’s no … Continue reading Spread your wings

Southern Cross Airways

When the Empire of Japan swept across the western Pacific with re-imagined mobility, the nearest safe territory was literally an ocean away from America’s arsenal of democracy. And getting from the US West Coast to Northern Australia by air would be a 12,446-kilometre-long life-or-death game of join-the-dots across the Pacific. In December 1941 only four men had ever made the flight in a land plane … Continue reading Southern Cross Airways

Yeaahh!

On fire The 2017 Yuma Airshow was held on Saturday March 18th, 2017, under typically azure Arizona skies, at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma (which shares tarmac with Yuma International Airport, KNYL). Appearing alongside several civilian performers was an array of USMC hardware – including UH-1Y Venom and AH-1Z Viper helos, as well as the F-35B Lightning 2, AV-8B Harrier, MV-22B Osprey, F/A-18E Super Hornet … Continue reading Yeaahh!

First strike

Birth of the bomber Long before Curtis Le May billed airborne devastation as a weapon of peace, or Arthur ‘Bomber’ Harris promised Winston Churchill that the unrestricted bombing of Germany would cost Britain ‘400 to 500 aircraft…[but] cost Germany the war’, the full power of air attack had been clearly seen by its inventor and first advocate. No, not Billy Mitchell or Hugh Trenchard, but … Continue reading First strike

Heavenly Bodies – Part III

Wondering how we got here? Click to catch up with Heavenly Bodies – Part I and – Part II Flight without wings On June 4th, 1982, a Kosmos-3M launcher shot BOR-4 serial number 404 out of the atmosphere for the first time. Once in space the vehicle deployed itself into orbit, eight micro-thrusters orienting the tiny craft as it flew. The wings, which had been … Continue reading Heavenly Bodies – Part III

Heavenly Bodies – Part II

Feature Image: X-24 research pilots (L to R) Einar Enevoldson, John Manke, Richard Scobee, Tom McMurtry, Bill Dana, and Michael Love. (NASA photo) Missed Heavenly Bodies – Part I? Catch up here Down to earth By the second half of the 1960s, the future of lifting bodies was looking bright. Thanks to R. Dale Reed’s lightweight M2-F1, followed by the heavyweight M2-F2/M2-F3 and HL-10, NASA … Continue reading Heavenly Bodies – Part II