aircraft

Experts say researcher’s in-flight hacking claims are dubious

Experts say researcher’s in-flight hacking claims are dubious

Making headlines yesterday, security researcher Chris Roberts is being investigated by the FBI for claiming the ability to mess with a plane's flight systems from onboard. An ill-received tweet started it all, as Roberts claimed he could hack his flight's oxygen regulation. Roberts went on to tell the FBI that he hacked en-route 15 to 20 times over the several years using his laptop, modified cables, and the in-flight entertainment systems. He even claimed to be able to access engine commands and make his plane move sideways. Industry experts are calling Roberts out on his claims, citing a range of reasons why his claims are dubious, if not impossible.

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Plane hacker admitted in-flight engine takeover says FBI

Plane hacker admitted in-flight engine takeover says FBI

While we were all busy arguing whether our cellphones could affect planes, one security researcher was busily hacking into aircraft and potentially gaining access to engine control. An ill-advised tweet got infosec specialist Chris Roberts barred from a United flight last month, after he joked about tinkering with aircraft systems like passenger emergency oxygen control. Turns out, so documentation submitted by the FBI reveals, Roberts' abilities were even greater, to the point of momentarily controlling engine thrust.

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Engineers 3D printed a working mini jet engine

Engineers 3D printed a working mini jet engine

It might not be enough to power a real jet, but this mini engine could certainly be the first step to a new method of manufacturing full-size ones. A team of engineers at GE have not only successfully 3D printed a small jet engine that works, but one that can handle 33,000 rotations per minute. But this wasn't made with the same MakerBot you have at home. The team behind the engine is responsible for developing additive manufacturing, which is based on melting metal powder into layers and making 3D structures.

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AeroMobil 3.0 flying car prototype forced to parachute to the ground

AeroMobil 3.0 flying car prototype forced to parachute to the ground

One dream for many people for decades has been to own a car that can fly to get you out of the long traffic jams that we all hate. A company called AeroMobil has been working on just that and rolled out the first prototype of its AeroMobil 3.0 flying car back in October of 2014. Late last week during a test flight of that prototype aircraft, something went wrong.

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FAA launches smartphone app B4UFly to answer questions about drones

FAA launches smartphone app B4UFly to answer questions about drones

Most of us see consumer level drones with cameras attached as nothing more than a toy like any other remote controlled airplane. We don’t really think about toys or RC planes needing FAA permission to fly, but for some drones in certain locations, that is exactly what you need. To help people wanting to fly their drone to figure out if it's legal and safe to do so in their area, the FAA has a new app.

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CyPhy LVL 1 Drone records video and promises easy control

CyPhy LVL 1 Drone records video and promises easy control

Sometimes it can be difficult to control drone aircraft if they require a complex remote controls along the lines of a standard remote controlled aircraft. However, there are bunches of new drones on the market today that are easy to control and only need a smartphone or tablet as the controller.

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FAA: Boeing 787s need to be rebooted every 248 days uptime

FAA: Boeing 787s need to be rebooted every 248 days uptime

Computer systems, especially servers, usually boast off years of uptime, the number of consecutive days the system is left running without a reboot or shutdown. That's not exactly surprising given how critical it is for these systems to keep on running and running. Boeing's 787 airplane, nicknamed the Dreamliner, however, can't boast of that same achievement anymore. The US Federal Aviation Administration is ordering airlines to shut down a 787's power systems at least once every 248 days to prevent a complete loss of power and control that can happen when the plane is left powered on for long stretches of time.

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Swedish airport gets the first remote air traffic tower

Swedish airport gets the first remote air traffic tower

The problem for small airports is that they don’t have much flight traffic because there often is no tower to control incoming flights. These small airports have no tower because they don’t have the traffic to warrant a tower leaving them in a chicken/egg situation. A small airport in Sweden has been installed with the world's first remote tower system.

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Progress Eagle concept imagines zero-emissions air travel

Progress Eagle concept imagines zero-emissions air travel

We’ve seen a number of vehicular concepts, but some have turned their sights to the sky and envisioned what the future of traveling amongst the clouds might look like. Previously a futuristic design for the AWWA Sky Whale concept was introduced, and now its designer — Oscar Vinals — has updated his own ambitions, creating a new concept called the AWWA-QG Progress Eagle. It’s a triple-decker zero-emissions plane, and were it to be made it would be able to carry around 800 passengers.

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Toyota is creating more accommodating airplane seats

Toyota is creating more accommodating airplane seats

Airplane seats aren’t the most comfortable places to sit, and as their sizes shrink to accommodate more people they grow increasingly uncomfortable. We’ve seen alternatives to airliner seats in the past — some of them even worse than what currently exist — but Toyota’s new version looks promising: they’re adjustable, able to transform to fit different body shapes. The seats are being made by Toyota in a partnership with All Nippon Airways, and they’ll (at least according to promises) make trips in economy class a little more comfortable.

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GE gets first 3D printed aircraft part approved by FAA

GE gets first 3D printed aircraft part approved by FAA

GE is a massive company that produces all sorts of products including aircraft components. 3D printing has been around for a while now and some companies are starting to take advantage of 3D printing in their manufacturing process. GE has announced that it has received FAA approval for the first aircraft part that is made using a 3D printer.

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You can tour SAS’ new long-haul airplane cabin with Street View

You can tour SAS’ new long-haul airplane cabin with Street View

Ever wondered what the plane you’re jumping on later in the month looks like on the inside? Being disappointed is nothing new to any frequent flyer who is looking forward to the cabin of their dreams, only to be met with clunky seats or a fiddly layout. Today, SAS and Google are trying to take some of the guesswork out of flying, introducing Street Views for SAS’ new long-haul cabins. Passengers can meander through the craft digitally, before ever setting foot on the plane.

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