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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

VFA-27's "Shoot 'Em If You Got 'Em" Cruise Video Teaser

Monday, April 28, 2014

Flying Fat Albert

US pilot believes he's found wreckage of missing airliner after searching through thousands of satellite images online

Is this MH370? US pilot believes he's found wreckage of missing airliner after searching through thousands of satellite images online - right where the flight vanished seven weeks ago
Michael Hoebel, from Tonawanda, New York spent hours trawling through pictures on TomNod.com, a website that shares satellite images
He has found images of what he believes to be the intact aircraft just off the northeast coast of Malaysia days after the crash

He has contacted the FBI and NTSB to share his findings
The search for the missing flight, which vanished on March 8, will now focus on the ocean floor, authorities have said


PUBLISHED: 10:12 EST, 28 April 2014 | UPDATED: 11:45 EST, 28 April 2014

A pilot from New York believes he has found the wreckage of the missing Malaysia Airline Flight 370 off the coast of Thailand after searching thousands of satellite images online.

Michael Hoebel, 60, spent hours trawling through the images made available to the public on a crowd-sourcing website, TomNod.com, before coming across what he believes is the doomed plane.

The recreational pilot from Tonawanda said he was shocked to discover that the aircraft, which vanished two months ago, appeared to be in one piece beneath the water off the northeast coast of Malaysia, just west of Songkhla in Thailand. The image was taken days after the crash.

Is it the wreckage? Michael Hoebel is pictured showing an image of what he believes is the wreckage of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. He found the image on a website that shares satellite images


'The perfect size': He said he used a scale given by the website and compared it to the specifications listed on Boeing's website - and discovered that the figure in the water was the right size

Discovery: He said that the lighter markings on the image matched up with the design of the plane

He told WIVB that he used the scale at the bottom of the map on TomNod and compared them to the specs on Boeing's website to establish that the white figure he saw was the perfect size.

'I was taken aback because I couldn't believe I would find this,' he told the news channel.


Where is the plane? A map shows where Hoebel believes the plane is, compared to its intended flight (red line) and suspected flight path (in blue)

He pointed to the image on his computer as he explained why he thought it was the missing airliner.

'The lighter skin where the wing attaches to the fuselage - you see that lighter skin,' he said, comparing the grainy image to a photograph of the make of plane.

And when WIVB reporter Ed Drantch questioned if the shadow could be a shark, Hoebel responded: 'That's a 210ft shark.'

TomNod allows members of the public to go through millions of satellite pictures in a bid to help investigate the crash.

It also allows other users to rate whether or not they agree with another user's theory - and so far, no one has disagreed with Hoebel's, he said.

No one else has noted finding the wreckage at the same spot, he added.

He said that he started searching for the plane because he wanted to aid the investigation to help the families who had lost loved ones.

He added that he has contacted the NTSB and the FBI with what he found - but so far they have not contacted him in response.

This weekend, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said surface search efforts for the plane have been scaled back because it is 'highly unlikely' clues will be found on the surface.

Certain: Hoebel said he looked through thousands of satellite images to find the potential wreckage

Hobby: The recreational pilot, 60, said that he felt deeply for the families who have lost their loved ones

Obama: Lessons must be learned from missing Malaysia flight

Instead, the search will enter a new phase with the focus on the ocean floor - despite there being no 'pings' from what was earlier hoped were the aircraft's black boxes.

Mr Abbott said that as the aircraft, which had 239 people on board, has been missing for 52 days, if there had been any debris from the aircraft it would have now sunk.

Malaysia's Prime Minister, Mr Najib Razak, has also conceded that investigators have made no substantial progress since March 8 - the date that the plane is believed to have crashed.

'That's all we have until today,' Mr Najib told the Wall Street Journal.


No signs: Royal Navy submarine HMS Tireless concluded its work searching for the black box on Friday


Are they looking in the right place? A map shows the planned search areas just west of Australia


No answers: Relatives of some of the Chinese passengers on board the Malaysia Airlines flight comfort each other as they continued their sit-in protest outside the Malaysian embassy in Beijing

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2614932/U-S-pilot-believes-hes-wreckage-missing-Malaysia-flight-searching-satellite-images.html#ixzz30E6biIFo
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Cool Commercial - Turkish Airlines

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Remembering John Houbolt, NASA's Voice In The Wilderness

Saudi Prince's $500 Million Airbus A380 Will Blow Your Mind

When people who are just a little bit rich travel, they fly first class. When you're really rich, you rent a private jet. When you're insanely rich, you fly on your very own private jet with your name painted on the wings. When you are a multi-billionaire Saudi Prince, you fly on a mind blowingly lavish$500 million customized Airbus A380. Recently it was revealed that Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, who has a net worth of $18 billion, purchased a $300 million Airbus A380 and is spending an additional $200 million remodeling the plane into a flying palace that makes Airforce One look like a hunk of junk….

Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal

Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal is one of the wealthiest people in the Arab world. Thanks to thousands of extremely shrewd investments, the Prince was able to turn a modest fortune into more than $18 billion. Through his investment firm Kingdom Holding, Prince Alwaleed has bought up large stakes in companies like News Corp, Apple, Citigroup, Twitter and more. He owns luxury hotels like The Savoy in London, the Fairmont in San Francisco, the Plaza in New York and the Four Seasons. He owns several yachts, more than 200 cars and three incredible palaces that cover a combined 5 million square feet. When Prince Alwaleed takes delivery of his $500 million Airbus, it will be one of four massive private jets. It will also be the largest and most expensive private plane in the world.

$500 Million Airbus A380

The base Airbus A380 costs $300 million and normally fits around 800 passengers. Prince Alwaleed's Airbus A380 is being completely stripped and remodeled with the following mind blowing luxuries:
- One parking space for his Rolls Royce
- Concert hall with grand piano, seating for 10 and stage for private entertainment
- Marble tiled steam room with spa treatments
- A "wellbeing" room complete with flat screen TVs on the walls and floors that shows passengers what they are flying over
- Five master bedroom with king sized beds, private bathrooms and showers
- 20 smaller private rooms
- Private elevator that connects the master bedroom to the tarmac for quick entrances and exits
- Boardroom with holographic monitors
- A prayer room with computer monitored prayer mats that automatically adjust to face Mecca

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Friday, April 25, 2014

B-17 Skydiving

Properly Tracked and Monitored Boeing 777s Do Not Disappear, or Do They?

Properly Tracked and Monitored Boeing 777s Do Not Disappear, or Do They? By Staff April 11, 2014

 Garcia / Published April 11, 2014

Photo courtesy Aero Icarus, Creative Commons

A Boeing 777 in cruise flight, maneuvering and even at low altitude, transmits a robust, crisp, and clear primary radar signature to both civilian and military radars for almost two hours or perhaps even longer. This signature was evident to Thai, Malay and Indonesian radar operators, civilian and military the night and early morning of March 8th, 2014. As I write this piece, over one month has elapsed since this plane “vanished” or “disappeared” from radar as international media persuasively quotes.

It is factual that MH370 transponders, communications equipment (digital and voice) failed. Such an unusual event triggered an immediate alert from the men and women in the airline’s operations control center and the civilian air traffic control radars centers who, until then, were routinely tracking the flight. The presence of a primary radar signature should have also triggered an immediate chain of communications between the airline, civilian air traffic-radar controllers and their military counterparts. In fact, it seems that such actions were not taken or were not assertive enough to have triggered a military radar tracking and intercept, as prescribed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Document 9433, Manual Concerning Interception of Civil Aircraft. This is a globally accepted and mandated standard operating procedure for “strayed” aircraft, especially since the tragic events of 9-11 in the USA.

Yet Malaysian Airlines MH 370 flew unchallenged with enough freedom, range and capability to have diverted, overflown, or crashed in very dense city centers such as Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Phuket, Bangkok, Jakarta and Singapore. Millions of innocent people were unbeknownst of the events transpiring literally over their heads.

I have flown a similar B 777-200 on the same route, airway and time of the night many times. I know the aircraft well and indeed, it does have the capability to fly fast and maneuver vertically with vigor. Yet, it cannot outrun an attentive military radar controller, much less a fighter jet on a well executed tactical intercept mission. A well monitored, tracked and intercepted, if necessary, Boeing 777 does not mysteriously vanish or disappear into vast uncontrolled oceanic airspace under the cover of the night.

Oscar S. Garcia, Chairman and CEO of Interflight Global, is an expert advisor and consultant in the areas of strategy, business and economic development, organizational design and industry forecasting. He was formerly a pilot with major airlines in the US and Asia, flying several aircraft including B777-200/300 and B747-400.

He can be reached at: oscargarcia@interflightglobal.com

© 2014 all rights reserved. All photos are the property of Chris Sloan, unless otherwise noted, and may not be reproduced without consent.
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Monday, April 21, 2014

A man who was forced to give up his dreams of becoming a pilot has spent 15 years building a replica Boeing 747 cockpit in his bedroom

Monday, Apr 21st 2014

Boeing in my bedroom: Man who was forced to give up his dream of becoming a pilot spent 15 years and £20,000 building a replica cockpit in his home
John Davis, 54, constructed the Boeing cockpit at £92,000 Coventry home
Former graphic designer spent 15 years and £20,000 on amazing simulator
He now makes up to £3,000 a month hiring out the simulator
Available to plane enthusiasts, nervous flyers and even pilots to practise in
Replica features light deck panels, passenger chairs and auto-pilot system
Also includes six-foot screen with two monitors, creating panoramic view


PUBLISHED: 10:45 EST, 21 April 2014 | UPDATED: 12:06 EST, 21 April 2014

A man who was forced to give up his dreams of becoming a pilot has spent 15 years building a replica cockpit in his bedroom.

John Davis, 54, forked out a staggering £20,000 constructing the life-sized Boeing 747-400 simulator at his £92,000 terraced home in Coventry.

But the amazing replica is not only for display as it is available to other plane enthusiasts, nervous flyers and even professional pilots to practice in.

Scroll down for video


Amazing: John Davis has spent 15 years building a life-sized Boeing 747-400 replica cockpit in his bedroom


Detailed: He forked out a staggering £20,000 constructing the simulator, which features a six-foot screen


Terraced home: He built the incredible replica at his terraced home (centre) in Coventry. But it is not only for display as it is available to other plane enthusiasts, nervous flyers and even professional pilots to practice in


Inside the cockpit: Luckily, Miss Mabey (right) does not have a problem with the lack of space in the bedroom

Mr Davis, who developed his aviation obsession as a child, said was forced to give up his wish to become a pilot as he was not good enough at mathematics.

Instead, he spent his time and money building the precise replica cockpit by hand - crafting it into the space he had in his spare bedroom at his two-bedroom home.

The Boeing 747-400 has now 'flown' at least 47,000 miles around the world - with Mr Davis earning up to £3,000 a month.

The former graphic designer, who mans the simulator full-time, said: 'I always longed to be a pilot but now I have the next best thing.

Take a tour around the replica Boeing in John's bedroom


Realistic: Mr Davis, who developed his aviation obsession as a child, said was forced to give up his wish to become a pilot as he was not good enough at mathematics. Above, the replica cockpit in his bedroom


Ready to fly: Instead he spent his time and money building the replica cockpit by hand. Above, the controls



Complex: The Boeing has 'flown' at least 47,000 miles around the world. Above, different parts of the cockpit

'The simulator is so life-like that I have lots of commercial airline pilots coming for a flight. I get to rub shoulders with professional pilots and it’s great that they are so impressed by my simulator.'

Mr Davis, who actually owns only a gliders licence, charges £75 for an hour-long flight, or £125 for two hours.


Couple: Mr Davis , pictured with his partner, Allyson Mabey, charges £75 for an hour-long flight

He said customers visited his house up to seven days a week - saying: 'The simulator is very popular and we often have couples come for the experience.

'It’s amazing how the ladies respond to it. Many women come with their partners and bring a book, but by the end of the flight they want to have a go themselves.'

Luckily, Mr Davis's partner, Allyson Mabey, does not have a problem with the constant stream of visitors,, nor the lack of space in the bedroom.

'I will admit I was surprised when John first told me about the simulator,' said the 53-year-old nurse.

'It is very unusual and it’s not every day you meet someone who has a plane in their back bedroom.

'I was astounded when I first saw the simulator in real life. To look at John’s house you would never guess there was a plane in the back room.'

She added: 'I haven’t flown it myself as there are a lot of things to learn - I leave that to John as he is so passionate.

'But I have sat in it a few times and every time I am just fascinated by the simulator, because it’s so technical and intricate.'

In order to build his pride and joy, Mr Davis studied photographs of Boeing 747-400 cockpits online - and he managed to order most of the parts for the aircraft off the internet.

The light deck panels are made out of MDF wood, while the pilot and two passenger chairs are made out of old leather car seats.

He spent a large amount of his budget for the simulator on the electronics and high-tech equipment.


Popular: Mr Davis said customers visited his house up to seven days a week - saying: 'The simulator is very popular and we often have couples come for the experience.' He added: 'It's amazing how ladies respond to it'

There is an auto-pilot system and a six-foot screen with two 19inch monitors - creating the all-important panoramic view of the simulated landscape.

'For me it is important to make the flight feel as lifelike as possible so I have invested in a great sound system with a subwoofer which vibrates so my passengers can get the experience of take-off and landing,' he said.


At work: Mr Davis even uses his simulator to help people with a fear of flying, by letting them sit through a realistic flight experience

Mr Davis, who always wears his full pilot uniform when taking a flight, even carries out in-flight announcements telling passengers to 'fasten their seatbelts'.

'My passengers can fly from Birmingham International or London Gatwick to Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport to on their first flight and then progress further afield to the Canary Islands if they fancy,' he said.

'It does take a while to learn your way around the cockpit as there are 90 different switches and three sound systems.

'It has taken me thousands of hours in man power to create this craft and even more in money, but I am pleased to now be earning a living from it. It’s the best job in the world - after being a real pilot.'

Mr Davis even uses his simulator to help people with a fear of flying, by letting them sit through a realistic flight experience on his £125 two-hour flying awareness course.

'The aim is to help people who are nervous about flying by letting them get used to the feel and sounds of a real plane,' he said.

'Many customers want to browse my simulated airport database to find their holiday destination, and fly there on their own.'

The cockpit's software uses includes different landscapes from around the world, including the Alps and the New York skyline - and Mr Davis has a list of international airports that customers can fly to.

'Because I’m not a trained pilot I can’t actually teach people how to fly, but I can help flight enthusiasts feel like a pilot in control of their own jumbo jet and I get to be a captain every day, all from the comfort of my home,' he said.

Published by Associated Newspapers Ltd

Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday & Metro Media Group
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Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2609512/Man-forced-dream-pilot-spent-15-years-20-000-building-replica-cockpit-home.html#ixzz2za9dxtWj
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Monday, April 14, 2014

Thunderbird 5 Solo Out