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 NASA's Five New Aeronautics Ideas

NASA has chosen five new aviation-related technologies that it intends to study intently over the next two years as part of its ongoing Convergent Aeronautics Solutions project, the agency said recently. The researchers will focus on fuel cells, the use of 3D printing to improve electric-motor performance, energy storage in lithium-air batteries, ways to change the shape of a wing in flight, and a new antenna design based on the use of lightweight aerogel.


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 AOPA Washington Fly-In Draws Biggest Crowd Yet

AOPA has been organizing its regional fly-ins for a few years now, and its latest event, held at the Bremerton National Airport near Seattle, Washington, drew more than 4,000 people and nearly 700 aircraft. The event offered on-airport camping, VIP tours of an aircraft carrier and the Boeing plant in nearby Everett, a Friday night barbecue with a live band, and educational talks and seminars all day Saturday. It was the most popular AOPA fly-in ever, by a wide margin, according to AOPA outreach director Chris Eads.


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 FAA Orders Mandatory Balloon Checks

All 6,400 hot-air balloons in the U.S. must be inspected to ensure they are not equipped with potentially leaky fuel hoses made of "egeflex" material, the FAA said in an emergency airworthiness directive issued today. The AD is effective Aug. 29, and balloonists have 14 days after that to complete the inspection, which should take about a half hour. If the egeflex hoses are found, the balloon is grounded until the replacement is complete. Uncorrected, the faulty hoses could cause a fire, the FAA said.


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 Longitude First Flight Imminent

Cessna's super-midsize Citation Longitude prototype has completed initial ground engine tests, the company said today, adding that the first flight is expected "in the coming weeks." The tests verified the functionality of the engine start, fuel system and auto-throttle as well as interfaces with the avionics, electrical and hydraulic systems, the company said. "The engine-run tests are one of the final major milestones as we prepare for first flight," said Scott Ernest, CEO of Textron Aviation.


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