FAA Reviewing Passenger Use of Electronic Devices

May 21, 2013 by  
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With electronic devices firmly entrenched as part of daily lives for many travelers, airlines are under pressure to allow passengers to use their tablets, laptops, smartphone, e-readers and other devices without restriction during flights. In the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been working on a set of regulations to govern the use of these devices on airplanes, but is reportedly far from ready to put any new rules into action, with the delay being attributed to the authority’s desire to put into place a concise set of regulations to deal with current, and even future, technology.

A year ago, the industry working group set up by the FAA noted that, faced with evolving electronic technology, the FAA was reviewing the use of personal electronic devices, excluding the use of cellphones, on aircraft. A full year later the FAA appears to be no closer to resolving the issue and this has drawn sharp criticism from some quarters. Among the critics is Senator Clair McCaskill (D-MO) who recently announced her plans to circumvent the FAA and introduce legislation allowing passengers the freedom to use their electronic devices throughout a flight.

The increasing number of different types of electronic devices brought by passengers onto airplanes is adding to the difficulty of drafting a set of standard regulations. The FAA working group needs to include all these devices and take into account the different modes of operation they offer. Currently a number of electronic devices include an “airplane mode” option, which generally means that they do not send or receive wireless signals, but this is not necessarily standard across all devices with this option. Also, there is concern that FAA’s desire to have rules that will apply to devices of the future may not be realistic given the speed at which technology is developing. The group has apparently also noted concerns over expecting already busy flight attendants to police the use of various devices.

The initial concern with the use of electronic devices on flights addressed, among other things, the issue of possible interference with electronic signals pilots rely on for safe flight. To date, the FAA reportedly has no record of aviation accidents caused by interference from personal electronic devices. Flight attendants note that their main concern is that passengers should not be using electronic devices when the safety measures are presented at the beginning of the flight, as they need to hear and understand what should be done in the event of an emergency.

The FAA anticipates a final report from the working group later this year, with rule changes being implemented by the end of 2013.

Sheremetyevo International Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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Sheremetyevo International Airport was first opened on 11 August 1959, providing the Moscow region of Russia with a public international airport. The first international flight from the grounds of Sheremetyevo was about six months later to Berlin. Of all the airports found in Russia, Sheremetyevo is rated second in the amount of passenger traffic it experiences, with Domodedovo International Airport at number one. In 2005 Sheremetyevo had approximately 12,174,000 million passengers pass in and out its doors, a number which is sure to increase in coming years.

The official operator and the joint-stock company that operates and possesses the airport is the ‘International Airport Sheremetyevo’. The authorities of Moscow own none of the shares in the airport as the federal government owns them. The airport’s elevation above mean sea level is about 190 meters or 622 feet. The Sheremetyevo airport has two concrete runways, one being 3,550 meters or 11,647 feet long and the other being slightly longer at 3,700 meters or 12,139 feet long.

There are plans to expand the Sheremetyevo International Airport in the nearby future by adding a needed third runway and another international terminal. Work is also being planned on the second runway as well as ideas on increasing the variety of transportation between the airport and the capital. The goal would be to increase the 12 million passengers a year to as much as 30 million passengers a year, which would of course increase the air traffic hence the new runway.

On the third of September 1964 Sheremetyevo-1 was opened specifically for domestic flights whereas Sheremetyevo-2 was only opened two decades later as the entrance for foreign flights for the Moscow Olympics. The second entrance is bigger and is where passengers coming in and out of the country will find the arrival and departure lounges. The Sheremetyevo-1 entrance for domestic flights is almost a separate airport, with its terminal building being some distance from the main terminals, although they use the same two runways.

Vietnam Airports

February 9, 2009 by  
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More famous for war-related tragedies than for it’s own natural splendor and lovely people, Vietnam is a great place to consider visiting if you are looking for something a bit out of the ordinary. The country has a bit of everything – from visually stunning world heritage sites like Ha Long Bay to the many colorful temples and creative theatrical performances. There are developed shopping districts and poorer villages, bustling cities and vast expanses of natural landscapes. The Vietnamese people have been strongly influenced by the Chinese culture and this certainly shows. However, they are distinctly different and when you try their food or visit some of the many attractions around the country, you will recognize that Vietnam is a wonderfully different place. There are at least 32 different airports in Vietnam, although most of them are fairly small and would only be an appropriate choice if you are using an air charter or flying your own small aircraft.

Currently one of the most popular landing choices for visitors to Vietnam is that of Noi Bai International Airport. This airport is classified as being the biggest in the country in terms of volume and runway length but the actual buildings are somewhat smaller than those found at other international airports. The reason Noi Bai is so popular is that it serves the country’s capital city, Hanoi, and because it is the newest and most modern of Vietnam’s airports. It currently has only one paved runway which measures 3 800 meters in length but a second runway is currently under construction. If you do not land at Noi Bai, then you will most likely touch down at Da  Nang International Airport or Tan Sot Nhat International Airport. Tan Son Nhat is the country’s second biggest and is located in Ho Chi Minh City while Da Nang is the country’s third largest international airport. Da  Nang is considered to be an important access point to central Vietnam and it recieves a lot of traffic.

The airport you choose to use will largely depend on where you are going and what your needs are. If you are flying with one of the many public airline companies that support these airports, you will simply need to decide which part of the country you want to visit. However, if you are piloting a smaller airplane, you will have much more choice in the matter and should consider using on the of the smaller airports which may well be closer to your final destination.

Airports in Vietnam:

Netherlands Airports

February 9, 2009 by  
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The Netherlands is well known for its cheese making, its traditional wooden shoes called clogs, its large windmills and the vibrant colored tulips that blanket the countryside. On a whole the country is quite flat and densely populated. It is a popular tourist destination with much to keep traveler’s occupied.

There are many airports and other forms of transport within the country that allow for easy travel and touring. The main airport in the Netherlands is the Schiphol airport, which is both a cargo and passenger airport. The Schiphol International Airport can be found southwest of Amsterdam and is the lowest major commercial airport above sea level in the world. Passengers can make their way out of the airport to their next destination using the Dutch Railways train station that can be found below the passenger terminal complex of the airport.

If you have a couple of hours to spend at the Schiphol Airport then you can browse around all the different stalls they have available to you. The Schiphol Plaza or shopping area is before customs and so really anyone can enjoy this alternative shopping mall. In fact you can even find an average size supermarket that is open twenty-four hours a day for your convenience. Another added pleasure of this airport is the fact that it provides such an array of disability-friendly facilities, which includes toilets, telephones and wheelchair access all specially adapted for those in need of the facilities.

Eindhoven Airport is another international airport, seven km from the main city, that you may fly into depending on where you are heading in the Netherlands. From here you will also find that many destinations and primary airports are accessible to the visiting passengers. Another convenience provided to the much-valued passenger is car hire from the airport. There is also a bus that travels to and from the airport to the central station and a taxi rank in front of the airport terminal.

Other airports in the Netherlands are Rotterdam Airport, Groningen Airport Eelde, Maastricht Aachen Airport and Texel International Airport.

Airports in the Netherlands:

Changi International Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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The Singapore Changi International Airport is also known as the Changi Airport and is located approximately 20 kilometers outside the city center of Singapore. It is one of the busiest airports in Asia and handles more or less 32.4 million passengers annually. The cargo division sees almost 1.8 million tons of cargo pass through its gates, and the Changi Airport facilitates almost 4,000 weekly flights and offers over 177 various travel destinations. The Singapore International Airport opened in 1981, and has won more than 250 awards over the years, confirming its achievements in service excellence and professionalism.

The airport operates from three terminals at the present time, while the fourth is still under construction. The terminals, in total, measure 679,100 square meters, consisting of Terminal 1, Terminal 2 and the Budget Terminal. While Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 deal with international and domestic air
travel, the Budget Terminal handles only the low cost carrier airlines that have become an attractive option to travelers on a restricted budget. Airlines that use the Singapore Changi International Airport as a hub include Jetstar Asia Airways, Silkair, Singapore Airlines, Tiger Airways, Qantas and Valuair.

The Changi Airport has two asphalt and one concrete runway used for take offs and landings. Runways 02L/20R and 02C/20C are both 4,000 meters in length, while runway 02R/20L measures 2,748 meters.

The terminal buildings are luxuriously decorated and have a variety of convenient facilities available to passengers. The most beautiful feature of the airport, are the six open air landscaped gardens, each focusing on a specific theme or plant group, namely a fern garden, bamboo garden, cacti garden, orchid garden, sunflower garden and a heliconia garden. Terminal one and Terminal two are connected to each other and feature a swimming pool, internet gaming facilities, hotel, spas, gymnasiums, movie viewing facilities and business centers. Duty free shops, health shops, fast food outlets, restaurants, bars, and fashion houses such as Gucci, Hermes and Prada are available in the terminal buildings.

Access to and from the Changi International Airport is serviced by shuttle buses, sky train, limousine and car rental facilities that are available from the airport.


February 9, 2009 by  
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Heading off on vacation or going on an important business trip? You will likely be flying on a commuter aircraft. Commuter airplanes vary in size from those which seat just a few passengers to those which seat over 100. All commuter planes have a cargo hold in which baggage and other goods are stored during flight.

Commuter aircraft are fitted to ensure the comfort of commuters over both short distance flights (nationally) and long distance flights (internationally). Commuter planes have developed to the point where refuelling on certain long journeys is unnecessary thus making such flights quicker and more convenient.

Da Nang International Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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The city of Da Nang is a beautiful place to visit, with diverse geography ranging from plains to mountains, forests, rivers, seas and islands, making the center of Vietnam a must to see. Here you can also find a variety of transport as you tour the country.

The Da Nang International Airport is operated by the Central Airports Authority. The airport is found in Da Nang in central Vietnam in the Hai Chau District and is both a civil and military airport. The Vietnamese Air Force shares in the use of the asphalt runways that are only 10 meters or 33 feet above the mean sea level. In Vietnam the Da Nang Airport is one of three international airports, the others being Tan Son Nhat International Airport and Noi Bai International Airport.

The Da Nang International Airport is probably the airport you will use if you want to explore central Vietnam. The airport has quite a bit of military history as it was used by the United States Air Force as well as the South Vietnamese Air Force during the Vietnam War. The Da Nang International Airport’s coordinates are 16 degrees 02’38″N and 108 degrees 11’58″E. The two runways that the airport has are both of equal length totaling 3,048 meters or 10,000 feet. Da Nang can handle 100 to 150 flights each day and has modern aviation equipment to navigate large aircraft that land there.

Each year the airport sees between 800,000 and 1 million passengers. By 2015 the airport hopes to have increased to as many as four million passengers. Da Nang International Airport can take on 400,000 tonnes of cargo each year. The intended growth of the airport is vital as the city increases its importance as an economic center.

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol

February 9, 2009 by  
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Schiphol Airport is located southwest of Amsterdam and is the Netherlands’ chief airport. The Schiphol Airport competes with many other large airports such as Heathrow International Airport in London, UK and the Charles de Gaulle International in Roissy, France, for passengers and cargo throughput.

Schiphol Airport has 6 runways made of asphalt and measuring between 2 014 and 3 800 meters. The airport is one large terminal but is sub-divided into three big departure halls. All these halls, concourses and piers are connected, which is part of the airport’s plan to have everything under one roof. Schiphol is the hub for the Amsterdam Airlines, KLM, Martinair, Transavia, Delta Air Lines and Arkefly.

Over the years Schiphol has received many awards for being the best airport in the world, and for fifteen consecutive years it was voted the “Best European Airport” and “Best Business Travel Airport”. Inside the terminal you will find an array of large shopping areas, as well as the Schiphol Plaza, which is the shopping center just before customs. Last of all there is a average-size supermarket that stays open 24 hours, seven days a week for the passengers’ convenience.

Underneath the passenger terminal complex you will find a passenger train station run by Nederlandse Spoorwegen. There is also a bus service available for those wishing to travel to and from the city.

The history of the Amsterdam Schiphol Airport dates back to September the 16, 1916 where it started off as a military airbase, later it was used by civil aircraft and was named Schiphol-les-bains before it was later called Schiphol which means ‘ship hole’.

Seletar Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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Seletar Airport (IATA: XSP and ICAO: WSSL) is a relatively small airport situated near the Lower Seletar Reservoir. Located just 13 km out of downtown Singapore, the airport is convenient to reach. Interestingly, Seletar Airport in Singapore was constructed by the British forces in the area at the time. It was built prior to World War II for use as a military base. Britain retained the airport until 1968. Thereafter, it came under the management of Singapore’s Department of Civil Aviation. Today, Seletar Airport is a public airport for joint military and civil use operated by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore.

There are 27 aircraft hangars at the airport, with a single asphalt runway for landing and take-off. The runway stands in a 03/21 direction and measures in at 5,223 feet, or 1,592 meters. Navigational Aids at Seletar include Precision Approach Path Indicator (PAPI), Aerodiomel Beacon and Visual Flight Rules (VFR). The airfield is a fire category 6/4 and has a fire service as well as medical evacuation facilities. No training operation or circuit flying is permitted at Seletar between 14:00 and 23:00 UTC.

The majority of flights handled at Singapore’s Seletar Airport are made by several flying schools. Other activities include charters, maintenance and repairs. The 3 airlines operating at Seletar are Berjaya Air, Airmark Aviation and Batam Logistics. The airport also deals with cargo and has a warehouse area measuring 100m squared with the capacity to deal with 840t a day.

Passengers making use of Seletar airport are well catered for with 2 check-in counters, credit card telephones, VIP lounge, passenger service, disabled amenities, a vending machine and a canteen nearby. Airport parking at Seletar is plentiful and there is a convenient pick-up/drop-off point. There are many options for traveling to and from Seletar airport. A taxi stall is situated outside of the Arrival hall and operates 24 hours a day. Passengers can also use buses or the Singapore Mass Rapid Transit line.

The Singapore Youth Flying Club operates from Seletar Airport. This club was created by the country’s Ministry of Defense with the purpose of promoting an interest in aviation amongst the youth as well as to provide flight training. Youths who join the club can earn their Private Pilot’s License and enjoy aeromodelling courses.

Boeing 737

February 9, 2009 by  
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The Boeing 737 jets are the most popular commercial airplanes in the world. Boeing’s “Original” 737 models are the 737-100 and the 737-200 variations. The “Classic” 737 models are the 737-300, 737-400, and the 737-500.

Boeing‘s most recent line of 737 jets is the 737-600, 737-700, 737-800, and the 737-900, all known as “Next Generation” 737s. These jets incorporate the latest technology, some of which is under constant development and testing. Next Generation features include wingtip extensions known as blended winglets that create added lift, making it possible to carry more weight. They help to minimize engine maintenance and extend the airplane’s range while also saving on fuel costs.

Boeing’s newest 737 jet is the 737-900ER, an extended range variant of the 900 series. The 737-900ER incorporates a number of high-tech features, some of which were originally developed for the United States military.

One example is the Heads-Up Display (HUD) that displays relevant information onto the pilot‘s field of vision, as well as the Enhanced Vision System (EVS), which uses infrared, or thermal, imaging to visually enhance objects that may be difficult for the pilot to see, such as terrain or other airplanes when flying in darkness or bad weather.

The Quiet Climb System (QCS) is another feature of the 737-900ER. The QCS reduces engine noise and gives operators the option of loading more cargo or passengers. It also allows airplanes to operate within local noise restriction airspace.

Here are some fast facts about the Boeing 737-900ER model.


Maximum speed: 261 mps (Mach 0.79)
Cruise speed: 0.78 Mach
Range: 3,200 nautical miles with a two-class layout and two auxiliary fuel tanks. 2,700 nautical miles with a one-class layout.
Length: 138′ 2″
Wingspan: 112′ 7″
Tail Height: 41′ 2″
Maximum weight: 187,700 pounds
Empty weight: 94,579 pounds
Engine(s): Two CFMI CFM56-7 with 27,300 maximum pounds of thrust
Crew: Two
Passengers: 180 in a typical 2-class configuration, and 215 in a typical 1-class configuration.

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