The Bubble Run by Cool Events, which was scheduled to take place on the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh grounds today, Saturday, September 9, was canceled in January. Please visit their website to contact them at https://bubblerun.com.
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Improving Phase I Flight Testing
EAA/FAA Summit brings good ideas to table for further study
February 22, 2017 — One of the more intriguing outcomes from last week’s EAA/FAA Recreational Aviation Summit was the traction gained on possibilities for improving the Phase I flight testing process for amateur-built aircraft, using risk assessments and detailed flight test plans rather than simply an hours-flown minimum.
“As we look for ways to further improve safety, especially during early flight testing for homebuilts, moving toward accepting detailed flight plans that address specific requirements is a direction that is very appealing,” said Sean Elliott, EAA’s vice president of advocacy and safety. “It would move away from concentrating only on hours-flown minimums to a foundation built on safety results.”
This remains a concept at this time, and the 25- to 40-hour flight test minimums for homebuilts will remain unchanged for the immediate future. In EAA’s role as co-chair of the GA Joint Steering Committee, however, the organization has discussed ways to incorporate more meaningful outcomes as a part of that flight testing.
For instance, following a detailed flight test plan during initial testing could create a database that could become a pilot operating handbook (POH) for common homebuilt models. Even those unique amateur-built aircraft could benefit from such knowledge, particularly for subsequent owners of that aircraft or those building similar aircraft.
“There’s a ways to go on this, but these are exactly the ideas and thinking that make the EAA/FAA summit so valuable each year, as it goes beyond brainstorming to concrete ideas to pursue,” Elliott said. “The goal here is crafting flight test protocols where a builder would know exactly what is needed to get the aircraft performance that is desired.”