Nearly 1 in 3 pilots in Pakistan have fake licenses

Pakistan has 860 pilots working for Pakistan International Airlines and other carriers. Turns out, 30% of those people aren't actually qualified to fly and their licenses aren't legit.

"They don't have flying experience," said aviation minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan.

According to CNN, the pilots paid others to take the required exam.

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Passengers with mobile WiFi network named "Remote Detonator" removed from plane

At Detroit Metropolitan Airport, police removed two passengers from a GoJet/Delta Connection flight because they apparently wouldn't turn off a mobile phone that reportedly had a WiFi network name of "Remote Detonator." From the Detroit Free Press:

...Flight attendants announced that they’d be calling police if personal WiFi wasn’t turned off, (passenger Aaron) Greenberg said.

It was a nerve-racking moment when an estimated 10 emergency vehicles with flashing lights surrounded the plane, he said...

A flight attendant told him there was a personal WiFi called “remote detonator” that was never turned off.

(Wayne County Airport Authority spokesperson Lisa) Gass could not confirm the name of the WiFi hot spot, but said both removed passengers – a 42-year-old woman and a 31-year-old man, both from Quebec – were released following the incident, pending further investigation.

image: Kai Hendry/Flickr (CC BY 2.0) Read the rest

Immerse yourself in these stunning 4K airplane cockpit videos

Go full screen for this 4K video of an Airbus A380 landing at night at the Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport. The YouTube channel, High Pressure Aviation Films, offers dozens of POV flight videos, from landings in Tahiti and Tokyo to the clip below of the Northern Lights seen from inside a Boeing 777 on its way from Los Angeles to Paris.

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FAA just found a new safety risk on 737 MAX

Boeing must address the issue before grounded jets fly again.

Python smuggles itself out of Australia by hiding in a woman's shoe on an airplane

When Moira Boxall returned to Glasgow from Queensland, Australia, she unpacked her suitcase and was surprised to find a small python had accompanied her on the trip. The snake had made the 9,000 mile journey tucked inside a shoe. This sounds like the makings of a fun movie! From CNN:

"I responded to a call from a woman who had just returned from a holiday in Australia who had found a small snake inside her shoe in her suitcase," animal rescue officer Taylor Johnstone said in a statement sent to CNN.

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For sale: magnificent NASA supersonic plane model from the 1960s

This gorgeous 1960s aerodynamic test model of a NASA supersonic transport plane from the space agency's Langley Research Center can be yours for $5,685. On offer from Agent Gallery Chicago, it's approximately 51" long with a wingspan of 24" and "built of wood and composite materials." Unfortunately, one of the fins has snapped off but I'm sure the right person could work wonders with a little balsa wood, X-acto knife, and paint.

"RARE 1960'S NASA AERODYNAMICS SST MODEL" (via Uncrate)

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World's shortest scheduled flight may go electric

Loganair's flights between Westray and Papa Westray, two islands in the Orkneys off the British coast, are the world's shortest at only 1.7 miles. They're planning to go electric, either by replacing the current plane's engines or getting a new one.

It takes about two minutes - including taxiing - to complete the 1.7 mile Westray / Papa Westray leg flight, which is about the same length as the runway at Edinburgh Airport.

The record is 53 seconds. The short inter-island services are seen as an ideal possible route for electric planes as a limitation of the aircraft would be range.

As well as Westray and Papa Westray, the inter island routes via Kirkwall on mainland Orkney also serve Sanday, Stronsay, Eday and North Ronaldsay.

The flight spends as much time on the runway taking off and landing as it does in the air between the islands. Three airlines bid the last time the subsidized service came up for tender, according to the Orkney Islands Council News. Read the rest

World's longest nonstop commercial flight takes off this week

Starting Thursday, Singapore Airlines will offer a nonstop flight between Singapore to New York, becoming the longest commercial non-stop route at 19 hours in the air. That's 3 hours longer than Quantas Airlines' Perth to London long haul. To handle the distance, Singapore Airlines ordered nearly 50 of Airbus's new A350-900 ULR (for Ultra Long-Range). From CNN:

"The A350 is a clean-sheet design that has been designed for those long-range flights," Florent Petteni, Airbus' aircraft interiors marketing director for the A350, tells CNN Travel.

All A350s share Airbus' design philosophy that makes the aircraft cabin feel more like a room, rather than a long tube. The plane has high ceilings, sophisticated LED lighting, almost vertical sidewalls and a low noise level.

These features, along with a maximum in-cabin simulated altitude of just 6,000 feet, all combine to provide an improved passenger experience, according to Petteni.

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Baggage handler gives zero f*cks

This baggage handler looks like she's been at her job for a long time, effortlessly tossing luggage down the slide as if they were bags of marshmallows. Hopefully, marshmallows are what's in that luggage because anything else is likely to break. Read the rest

Watch these heart-pounding jet maneuvers from the pilot's POV

A very skilled pilot takes a Saab Gripen fighter jet through its paces, and his audio from the recording indicates just how physically and mentally taxing this kind of flying is. Read the rest

Secret Nazi experimental plane was an epic piece of vaporware

Behold the incredibly weird-looking Horten Ho 229 -- an all-wing "wonder weapon" plane that the Nazis frantically developed even as they were collapsing and losing WWII. Read the rest

Video: How the Red Arrow Aerobatic Team does their thing

I used to go to a lot of air shows when I was a kid growing up in Canada. I used to love seeing the American, British and French air forces show off their aircraft. It was always a thrill to see Canada's Snowbird aerobatic team show up to strut their stuff. Now, thanks to this video, I have a little insight into how they and other elite flying teams do what they do. Read the rest

Watch a Blue Angel surprise the hell out of some folks

One of the U.S. Navy Blue Angels surprises the hell out of some people yesterday during the Chicago Air and Water Show.

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Plane disappeared and crashed in Bermuda Triangle, family still missing

On Monday, a small plane with two adults and two young children disappeared from radar over the Bermuda Triangle. The Coast Guard has recovered parts from the plane but are still searching for the passengers, Jennifer Blumin, 40, her 3 and 4-year-old sons, and Nathan Ulrich, 52. Since the 1950s, the Bermuda Triangle, an area between Bermuda, Puerto Rico, and Florida, has been infamous for what many believe is a disproportionate number of mysterious aircraft and boat vanishings or accidents. From ABC News:

The plane was scheduled to fly from Puerto Rico to central Florida, but never arrived at its destination, according to the Coast Guard.

Miami Air Traffic Control reported that it lost radar and radio contact with the airplane just three hours into the flight, the Coast Guard added in a statement.

"There's no indication of significant adverse weather at the time," Lt. Cmdr. Ryan Kelly, a Coast Guard spokesman, told The Associated Press.

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Designing airplane interiors to feel bigger than they are

A commercial airline is no Tardis ("bigger on the inside") but designers and engineers do use several techniques to reduce your claustrophobia in the sky.

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Cabin video from Dubai crash landing: "Leave the bags!"

Moments before a crash-landed jet at Dubai airport burst into flames, amid screams and billowing smoke, passengers chock the aisle to fetch bags from overhead bins. The video starts sometime after evac begins, lasts more than 2 minutes, and ends before it's over: "Leave everything! Leave the bags!... Leave your bags behind! Jump!"

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Lithium batteries should be banned as cargo on passenger planes, says UN aviation watchdog

Planes that carry passengers should be prohibited from carrying large quantities of lithium batteries in cargo, a United Nations aviation watchdog says. Read the rest

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