European group Eurocopter recently unveiled the X3 hybrid helicraft. The hybrid helicraft combines forward-facing propellers astride two short aircraft wings with the familiar overhead rotor blades seen on a regular helicopter. By combining the advantages of a fixed-wing aircraft with those of a standard helicopter, the half-plane, half-helicopter design can fly at impressive forward speeds of 220 knots (400 kph). Normal helicopters usually cruise at a maximum speed of 130-140 knots.
The X3 hoverplane, sporting black-and-white striped propellers, had its first flight on September 6
th at a European military base. Eurocopter chief executive Lutz Bertling said, “We just wanted a place where we knew we were alone, no plane spotters.” The X3 was unveiled following months of secrecy to counter U.S. based rival Sikorsky.
The objective of the X3 helicraft is to deliver more speed without losing efficiency. Typically the faster a helicopter flies, the less efficient it is when hovering and vice-versa. Helicopter manufacturers have devoted years of research to solving this problem. The X3, for now, is a concept helicopter but if successful will be sold in the usual helicopter form or with X3-type wings. Eurocopter refused to publicly announce development costs or future market potential. They did mention that such a helicopter might cost 20-25 percent more and go 50 percent faster than most normal helicopters. Check out the video below to learn more:
Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. earlier this week celebrated the 25
th anniversary of the GIV. The Gulfstream GIV is one of the best-selling large-cabin, long-range business jet in the world. “The GIV was the aircraft that launched a thousand Gulfstream aircraft,” said Gulfstream president Joe Lombardo. The Gulfstream IV formed the foundation for designing and building the G300, G400, G350, and G450. The aircraft’s first flight was a significant turning point and set a new standard for technology for the company. Over 520 of the 536 jets produced in the GIV series are still in operation today. The ultra long-range and unprecedented speed set a milestone for the Gulfstream aircraft. Jim Gallagher, director of the company’s large and mid-cabin sustaining program, said “there is no other aircraft that came close, companies relied on it to travel worldwide; it helped push global commerce.”
The first GIV flight took off from Savannah International Airport on Septemeber 19
th, 1985. It was reported that more than 80 orders were taken while the aircraft was still in development. The pre-orders at that time were one of the largest for a single aircraft in business aviation history. After being certified by the Federal Aviation Administration on June 8, 1987, the GIV was able to officially enter service. From there on the GIV has become the aircraft of choice for business-jet customers, private individuals, and air charter companies worldwide.
Did you know that sometimes
private jet charter can cost the same as doing the trip first class? Commercial airlines are constantly raising fares, charging for bags, and cutting that route that you need the most! By chartering a private jet you can easily avoid the crowded flights, long delays, and hassle associated with the typical commercial flight. Independent airline analyst and founder of AirlineFinancials.com, Robert Herbs, commented that growing interest in private travel is pretty understandable. He said, “By the time you have to deal with all the security at airports, especially on the shorter flights, it’s just not worth it for the businessman. Their time is too valuable to waste spending in security lines, … (on) delayed planes, and fighting with 100% full airplanes.”
Magellan Jets recently launched an
empty leg search engine that allows users to access private jet trips that are going without any paying passengers on board. By working with the operators, who want to move the aircraft, Magellan Jets is often able to secure very competitive pricing. Smart use of empty legs can reduce the cost of flying privately to be comparable to the costs of flying first class on a commercial airline.
Obviously a chartered flight for one passenger will cost more than an airline ticket, but when you budget in the costs of time wasted, nights away from home, and the intangibles like stress and fatigue, the gap starts to shrink. Also, for groups of people (especially larger groups) the cost of flying private can even be more efficient than commercial airline service! For example, if a group of six were to charter a light private jet from Boston to New York City, a private flight could cost as little as $8,400 for a round trip. If that same group were to fly first class commercial, the cost could be as high as $8,700. In some cases flying private can be the cheaper option and it is always more valuable, improving productivity and business efficiency. Contact one of our charter experts today for more information!
Apple’s Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs had some trouble in Japan while trying to board his private jet. Jobs was returning home to the U.S. from a family vacation in Kyoto, Japan when security officials detected Shuriken (Ninja stars) in his carry-on luggage. A security scan at Kansai International Airport discovered the weapons and he was barred from taking them aboard his private plane. It is required at some airports that all luggage be scanned whether you are flying commercial or private. Jobs reportedly said it wouldn’t make sense for a person to try to hijack their own plane. Security at the airport disagreed and demanded he remove the stars. Jobs, clearly aggravated, later swore to officials he would never visit Japan again. While it’s hard to believe that Steve Jobs would follow up on that threat, considering that Japan is one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world and a huge consumer of his products, his frustration is understandable.
Many people mistakenly believe that because they are on board a private flight, the typical security regulations don’t apply to them. Technically, the same standards apply to all flights, private or commercial. The caveat is that on a private flight there just isn’t as much oversight, so usually there aren’t any questions asked. Passengers should still be aware of the requirements and prohibited items listed on the
This past weekend Fantasy Football Superdraft held a special VIP event at the Palms Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Fantasy Football Superdraft is an event that has completely revolutionized the fantasy draft experience. Superdraft is a live event that uniquely combines fantasy sports with premier entertainment and nightlife to be the ultimate weekend getaway experience. Stacy Keibler hosted the event (looking marvelous in a red dress) and Ashton Kutcher and Danny Materson, two cast members of the hit TV series “That 70’s Show,” were also seen at the event. Magellan Jets was there as an official private jet sponsor and appeared on the backdrop of the red carpet event. Check out the pictures and link for more!
AOL Travel recently posted an article by their "Mystery Pilot" talking about which airport airline pilots think are the worst to fly into. The best part about flying privately (which Magellan Jets coincidentally can help with!) is you can avoid these airports. Most of the reasons they list (delays, heavy traffic, terrible terminals) are avoided by chartering out of smaller airports that are geared toward private jet traffic and are often closer to your ultimate destination!
If you think you have gripes about air travel these days, consider the pilots and flight crews who deal with extreme delays and harried passengers every time they go to work. We asked one pilot, a first officer with a major U.S. airline for 19 years and counting, to dish exclusively to AOL Travel which airports he most dreads. Read on for which one has the rudest passengers, and which one he would rather shove sticks in his eyes than call it his home base.
California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, (C), shakes hands with Chinese during a visit to a Californian food and beverage Festival at a hypermarket in Hangzhou in east Chinas Zhejiang province 11 September 2010. Arnold Schwarzenegger, is on a weeklong trade mission that will take him to China, Japan and South Korea. EPA/MU CHEN
Arnold Schwarzenegger will be flying to Asia today with an entourage of about 30 state employees. The private jet is being paid for by a Chinese billionaire who's hoping to boost foreign relations and help raise revenue for the state of California. California is still burdened with a $19 billion budget deficit which costs taxpayers roughly $52 million every day. Schwarzenegger stated that his travels are aimed at helping the budget and growing California industry. The six-day trip will include visits to Japan and South Korea where Governor Schwarzenegger plans on visiting US troops. All travel expenses are being provided by private donations and Schwarzenegger is extremely proud of his ability to save taxpayer money. Some legislators, however, say it is better to spend public money than to rely on private interests who may expect something in return. Critics, economists, and other legislative leaders are questioning the effectiveness of the Governor’s plans, but the people of California have their fingers crossed hoping that something good will come from the trip.
Have you ever wondered what the difference was between the Gulfstream GV, G500, and the Gulfstream G550 private jets? When looking to charter a jet, it is important to know the exact ins and outs of the aircraft that you are planning to fly on. Obviously, we make it a point to supply the best aircraft possible when you
charter jets through Magellan Jets, but it’s still good to know all the facts!
When examining the interior of the Gulfstream GV, G500, and the G550 it is important to research and learn all about the amenities and cool gadgets on board. The G500 and G550 are both equipped with a
PlaneView cockpit, which is currently the most advanced flight deck in business aviation. The systems in each aircraft are based on Honeywell’s next generation Primus Epic integrated avionics suite. The G500 and G550 are both equipped with Gulfstream’s signature Cursor Control Device (CCD). The CCD aids pilots in flight planning, navigation, and communications in flight by improving the way that pilots interact with the PlaneView avionics system. Although the GV does not offer CCD or PlaneView, there is a new option to install PlaneDeck which converts the displays from older tube-style displays to LCDs, and offers much of the same features. PlaneDeck is also Synthetic Vision System (SVS) capable. The optional Synthetic Vision Primary Flight Display (SV-PFD) adds to the enhanced situation awareness even in zero visibility conditions right on the main cockpit display (instead of a separate screen).
Gulfstream PlaneDeck featuring SVS and EVS
All three aircraft (GV, G500, & G550) have
Enhanced Vision System (EVS). EVS significantly improves situational awareness by providing an infrared video feed of the environment and presenting the pilot with a clear view of runway markings, taxiways, and the surrounding landscape at night or in the worst weather conditions. Each aircraft is also equipped with autoland, a system that fully automates the landing phase of an aircraft’s flight, with the human crew supervising the process. Gulfstream has been able to manufacture each aircraft with the best Flight Management Systems, ensuring additional safety, comfort, and efficiency.
The cabins aboard each Gulfstream combine productivity with exceptional comfort. The signature oval windows provide ample sunlight and a continuous supply of 100 percent fresh air throughout the cabin keeps passengers comfortable on long flights. With options for four distinct living areas, three separate temperature zones and a choice of available configurations that seat up to 18 passengers, passengers are able to indulge in complete business luxury. Maintaining contact with the home or office is even easier with a host of standard communication features: a fax machine, a printer, a wireless local area network and satellite communications are all available as options. Cabins arranged as separate groupings encourage working, dining, entertaining or resting to help keep fresh and productive.
Gulfstream G550 Cabins
These aircraft are three of the most popular private jet charters and are well established in ultra-long range and large cabin category. The Gulfstream GV, G500, and G550 are three extraordinary airplanes that offer extensive range and impressive speeds without sacrificing cabin comfort. Gulfstream has been manufacturing airplanes for over 50 years and is used to setting the standard for business travel. They have a top-rated service center network that stands ready to provide assistance on six continents. If we were to recommend an aircraft for a long, luxurious business travel, you better bet it’s a Gulfstream GV, G500 or G550.
Performance GV G500 G550
Max Range (Mach 0.80)
Max Operating Speed
Max Takeoff Weight
Design Specifications GV G500 G550
Rated Takeoff Thrust
Want to be invincible in the sky? Nowadays anyone can track your whereabouts especially while operating in public airspace. The company FlightAware.com grants users accessibility to view a wide range of flights and their scheduled routings. When an aircraft is operating in controlled airspace their identification number must be clearly visible on the fuselage. This goes for private flights too! Pilots talking to air traffic control are broadcasting their whereabouts and intentions on public radio frequencies, making it even easier to listen in on the open skies.
Aircraft owners have the option of blocking their location from being released to the public (aside from radio transmissions that the pilots may make). You can also block your tail number with the NBAA (National Business Aviation Association) which operates and maintains the BARR (Blocked Aircraft Registration request) in conjunction with the FAA. Companies and owners like to do this when they're regularly transporting high-profile passengers or travelling to controversial (or sometimes dangerous) destinations. Alternatively, private flights operated by management or charter companies may identify themselves by flight number, which can be changed trip to trip.
Erictric.com, Apple CEO Steve Jobs has recently requested that his tail number be blocked. Jobs currently owns a Gulfstream GV with the epic tail number N2N. Although his plane can't be tracked online, bloggers, reporters, and journalists can still always snap a photograph of his plane and quickly update his whereabouts to the internet.