ON MAY 5TH a Sukhoi Superjet operated by Aeroflot, Russia’s flag carrier, erupted in flames while attempting an emergency landing at Sheremetyevo Airport in Moscow. CCTV footage shows the airliner make a hard landing, bounce perhaps 20ft in the air, and plunge back down with sufficient force to break the undercarriage and set the fuel tanks alight. At least 41 of the 78 passengers and crew died. Too little is known at this early stage to make informed assessments of the cause of the crash. Some survivors have claimed that the aircraft was struck by lightning shortly after take-off. That should have been an unremarkable if unnerving event. The average commercial jet will be struck by lightning once a year. Complications almost never arise because modern airframes are designed to conduct electrical currents safely across their exterior surfaces. If, as some have suggested, the lightning caused damage to the Superjet’s internal electrical components, questions will need to be … [Read more...] about A plane crash in Moscow raises safety questions about the Sukhoi Superjet
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JUBA, South Sudan: A passenger plane crash-landed and burned in Wau, northwestern South Sudan on Monday, but all 49 passengers and crew survived, an airport official. The plane was landing but then crashed, said Wau's Acting Airport Manager Stephen Youngule. "The plane touched down and then jumped up again. The pilot couldn't control it," said Youngule, who is also Deputy Director of Air Traffic Services. "I saw it until the very last moment before the fire engulfed the aircraft." When the plane crashed, its door flew open, which allowed the pilot and rescue crews to get everybody out, he said. Those with injuries were taken to Wau's hospital for treatment, said Youngule. The plane, an Antonov 26, carried 44 passengers and had five crew members, said Youngule. On social media, images appeared of the plane with smoke billowing from the wrecked fuselage. U.N. peacekeepers worked with local emergency workers to evacuate passengers from the plane, according to David … [Read more...] about Plane crash-lands in S Sudan, at least 49 injured
Video PlayerClose By Sportswriter Yao Youming XI'AN, Dec. 8 (Xinhua) -- In the winter drizzle, a white control line model plane climbs, dives and turns. The flyer, Huang Jinquan, 11, has just won his first national title in August with a dazzling aerobatic performance. Not keen to talk, the introverted champion prefers to show his passion with the two lines in his hands. Jinquan is a student of Redian Primary School in the eastern suburbs of Xi'an, northwest China. More than 70 percent of the students at this school come from rural areas and have been taken to cities by their parents, who are migrant workers striving for a better life. Many, like Huang, lack a companion as their parents are usually busy with work, and model planes are too expensive for them. Headmaster Han Baoan had a chance to receive flying training in 1983 when he first came to work in Redian. Since then he has been trying his best to help his students fly. "We may not have enough money, but nothing can deprive us … [Read more...] about Feature: Dream of migrant workers’ children fly high in model planes
BOEING, AN American aerospace giant, had once hoped that it would have a good week at this year’s Paris Air Show, which ends on June 23rd. It was expected to launch the 797, a new mid-sized jet to fill the gap in its range between its smaller 737 narrow-body airliner and its much larger 787 and 777 wide-body jets. But instead it was Airbus, its European arch-rival, that launched a plane that fitted this criteria. The A321XLR (the XLR stands for “extra long range”) is a version of the planemaker’s popular narrow-body adapted to boost its range to 5,400 miles (8,700 km). This is made possible by enlarging the aircraft’s centre fuel tank. It is a move that could spell trouble for Boeing’s own plans to fill the middle of the market. The A321XLR is a plane “that is of interest to the entire world,” says Francois Caudron, a marketing boss at Airbus. He says the demand for the proposed jet came from airlines flying previous A321 models, which … [Read more...] about How much trouble does Airbus’s new plane pose to Boeing?
PRINCE Andrew made a secret deal to fly around the world on a £40million luxury jet owned by a multi-millionaire banking tycoon, it has been reported. A bombshell leaked email reveals how the Duke arranged for David Rowland's 14-seat plane to be used for overseas engagements instead of his ageing RAF aircraft. The Mail on Sunday revealed that in the last two years Andrew travelled on the Global Express at least five times while on royal duties. In an email to David's 44-year-old son, Jonathan Rowland, the Duke allegedly spoke of how grateful he was for the flights. He is believed to have wrote: "I am deeply, deeply grateful to your father for making this possible," he wrote. "I have a completely different outlook on life and its possibilities now. Whilst trying not to let it go to my head! Very difficult!" David Rowland - who has a reported net worth of £612million - is a former Treasurer of the Conservative Party but resigned from the position in 2010 over his status as … [Read more...] about Prince Andrew ‘made secret deal to use tax haven tycoon’s £40m luxury jet because he was sick of ageing RAF planes’
Moscow faces the prospect of an acrimonious legal standoff with the west after an international investigation concluded that a Buk missile brought across the border from Russia had shot down flight MH17. The Dutch-led joint investigation team (JIT) said the missile had been fired from a village under the control of pro-Russia rebels. At a press conference in the Dutch town of Nieuwegein, its investigators said there was “irrefutable evidence” that a Buk 9M38 missile downed the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777, killing all 298 people on board. Russia immediately dismissed the findings, which could lead to attempts to extradite Russian citizens to stand trial. Dmitry Peskov, Vladimir Putin’s press spokesman, said the “whole story is unfortunately surrounded by a huge amount of speculation and unqualified, unprofessional information.” The investigators, who include representatives from Australia, Malaysia, Ukraine, and Belgium, said their conclusions were based … [Read more...] about MH17: Buk missile finding sets Russia and west at loggerheads