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Articles by Ben Sandilands

MH370 search review unlikely to deal with official lies

Will anyone at the tripartite review of the search for MH370 being held in Kuala Lumpur this Thursday have the guts to ask why Malaysia deliberately misled its partners about the course taken by the missing Boeing 777 from day one, back on 8 March 2014?

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Airbus, Boeing face continued issues with A380s, 737 MAXs

They are very different airliners but they both face important issues that continue to attract analyst and carrier scrutiny. The giant Airbus A380 needs more sales, and the comparatively miniscule Boeing 737 MAX needs, according to a range of reports, a better new tech engine.

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Qantas sets up 717 heavy maintenance base in Canberra

In a move that is good politics as well as good business Qantas is putting a heavy maintenance base for its Boeing 717s in Canberra later this year.

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MH370: What did ships notice on the day it disappeared?

Updated* When Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 inexplicably changed course on 8 March 2014 and from all indications eventually flew to its doom in the southern Indian Ocean, it must have crossed paths with the shipping below. But has anyone systematically interrogated those container ships, or those fishing fleet mother ships that were legal?

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Virgin Australia adds Spain and Scotland codeshares

As promised earlier this year, Virgin Australia keeps adding new international codeshares with Etihad that can compete with the Qantas-Emirates partnership.

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Boeing patents an in your face passenger comfort device

When Boeing patents a ‘face relief aperture’ device to hold your head in place while you try to sleep you just know that the crisis in passenger comfort is becoming more …. pressing.

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An airline critique of mid air refuelling as a SYD-LHR solution

  A UK story about how a university research program could solve the problem of ultra long range (ULR) flights like Sydney-London non-stop is behind a terse email from an airline contact of note this morning.

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PED chips more vital in MH370 mystery than in Germanwings crash?

Nothing more has been heard for some days of the mobile phone chip claimed to have been recovered from the Germanwings crash site, showing the chaotic last few seconds of the flight that ended in disaster in the southern French alps on 24 March.

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Germanwings marks difference in crime and safety probes

If there is one thing that stands out apart from the utter horror of the Germanwings crash, it is the speed with which the blame was placed on a pilot.

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Jetstar responds to super rumours

There has been some buzz today about Jetstar conducting a ‘payroll review’ to correct errors in superannuation payments. In part this is true, but apparently the necessary adjustments will be small.

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Australia, Singapore ramp up Thai air safety scrutiny

Safety regulators in Australia and Singapore have now joined Japan and South Korea in increasing their scrutiny of Thai flag carriers following an ICAO audit that raised questions about air safety regulation in Thailand.

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Howzat! Air safety body catches crashing drone at cricket

Unseen it seems by everyone but the country’s air crash investigator at last Sunday’s victory by Australia over NZ at the world cricket cup final at the MCG was a crashing drone.

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Far Western Sydney Airport to generate heat, light and jobs

In what  government insiders say will be marketed as a broadening of the vision for Sydney’s future, Prime Minister Abbott will later today unveil his Far Western Connect project, an extension of what was formerly known as the WestConnex road for the Future until the language police  prevailed.

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Thai carriers under threat of air safety downgrade

Thailand is at risk of an aviation safety downgrade by ICAO and is taking urgent action under martial law powers to avoid the damaging commercial consequences that would follow such a decision.

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Water cannon salute foams Virgin Atlantic A330 costs ££££££

Apparently there is a button on airport firefighting equipment that says FOAM not WATER.  It was accidentally pressed during a water cannon salute for a new Virgin Atlantic A330 flight at Manchester Airport earlier today, and the damage bill is eye watering.

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NZ leaning control tower plan may be a day too soon

Today’s notable aviation image comes from New Zealand, with not a jet in sight. It’s an air traffic control tower for Wellington airport that totally outdoes the leaning tower of Pisa, and, it may be a day too soon.

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Australia to monitor cockpit rule change for unintended issues

Safety authorities in Australia will monitor its adoption of the two-persons-in-cockpits-at-all-times rule which was announced today for future unintended consequences.

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Australia also adopts two crew always in cockpit rule

Australia has also mandated a minimum of two approved people, at least one of them a pilot, to be in the cockpits of  its international and domestic airliners at all times, and with immediate effect.

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