Follow the hijack plane to Geneva

With the Google Earth program on your computer you can follow the path of the hijacked plane as if you were the pilot!

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09:17 Posted in Special days and notable incidents | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: geneva, ethiopian, aircraft, hijack | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


Sion Air Show: Magnificent and noise

Sion air show: very exciting and interestion, but SO NOISY sometimes. Most people, but not everyone, blocked their ears when the military jets strutted their stuff.

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16:44 Posted in Special days and notable incidents | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: sion, aircraft, dc3, spitfire, rafale | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


Curtains for night flights

If you are disturbed in your bedroom at night by aircraft movements, perhaps you should buy some special noise-reducing curtains!

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19:26 Posted in Potpourri | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: aircraft, noise, geneva, curtains | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


WHO says that noise is bad for us

A new report from the World Health Organisation quantifies the number of healthy life years lost in Europe because of environmental noise. Aviation is one of the noise sources examined.


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18:05 Posted in Potpourri | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: who, oms, aircraft, noise, health | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


England retained the Ashes!

The England cricket team beat the Australians in Australia to retain the trophy called "The Ashes". Here are some reasons to connect that to aviation.

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12:04 Posted in Potpourri | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: cricket, pollution, jet, aircraft, floods, snow | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


Turn algae into jet fuel!

According to an article in the Times (9 September 2010) Sir Richard Branson is putting his faith in algae as an alternative jet fuel.

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12:24 Posted in Potpourri | Permalink | Comments (2) | Tags: aircraft, fuel, algae, branson | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


An amphibian aircraft in Geneva this weekend

One aircraft seen this weekend near Geneva airport is very unlikely to have landed there!

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09:30 Posted in Special days and notable incidents | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: geneva, amphibian, aircraft | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


Rare and noisy visitors from Eastern Europe

Local aircraft spotters will be happy to have seen some old Yakovlev aircraft this year, throwbacks to the days of old Soviet Union. One particular one, from Kazakhstan, raises questions.



There have been six different Yakovlev YAK-42D which have come to Geneva this year. According to Wikipedia, these aircraft were the first aircraft to be produced in the Soviet Union which were powered by modern high-bypass turbofan engines. They date from the start of the 1990 decade, which makes them oldish (though there are many aircraft of that generation still flying with regular airlines). However, they are rather noisy aircraft, being put by the Swiss authorities in noise class II (the noisiest are in class I).

None of the six aircraft appear to have come to Geneva more than once this year. All except one of these are registered in Russia, operated by what I presume to be Russian companies.

The only non-Russian aircraft was from Kazakhstan. This aircraft, with registration UP-Y4201, arrived on 17 July, and was duly registered by the ARAG aircraft movements enquiry system.

Because it was quite an unusual aircraft and country it has been photographed by many aviation enthusiasts, including two at Geneva airport. These photos can be seen HERE and HERE. One of the photographers referred to it as being one of several VIP visitors during that beautiful day!

This aircraft is believed to be owned by the Kazakhstan government, and the aircraft callsign that it used suggests that it was operated by the company called Fly Jet KZ.

What is a little curious is that this company appears to be on the latest version of the European Community banned list, dated 5 July 2010.

No doubt there is a perfectly reasonable explanation!

11:23 Posted in Noisy aircraft | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: aircraft, noise, geneva, airport, yakovlev, yak-42 | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


easyJet is tops!

For all regular flights leaving Geneva airport the pilot should set a callsign starting with the airline's ICAO code. Sometimes they make mistakes: errare humanum est!

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15:55 Posted in Potpourri | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: aircraft, callsign, geneva, airport, transponder | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook


The last Sunday night takeoff could have annoyed many people

The last takeoff last Sunday night, of a business jet at 23h28, could have annoyed many people for many reasons


On Sunday night, 8 August, the last takeoff of the evening, at 23h28, could have annoyed many people living around the airport, including ones in the Ferney-Voltaire region of France, for several reasons.

As the list of movements after 10pm shows, the last takeoff of the  night was a small Citation 525A business jet, with registration YR-TOY. Not being a regular scheduled flight, this was not shown on the Geneva airport web site list of departures. As such.the general public could not have known about it in advance.

The identification of the aircraft indicates that it is registered in Roumania as belonging to a company called Toyo Motor Group. Such an aircraft can carry up to 10 passengers.

The aircraft had flown into Geneva in the middle of that Sunday. It thus stayed in Geneva for several hours (perhaps just enough time to sample the pleasures of the Geneva August festival).

The official Swiss rules for takeoffs after 10pm state that the flights must be commercial ones. The definition of a commercial flight is one which is not restrictred o a small group of people and for which there is a monetary charge which exceeds the basic costs of the flight. In other words, it should be open to any group of people, who must pay enough money to make a profit for the flight operator. It is nice to know that there are members of the Roumanian population able to afford to come to Geneva for an afternoon in a small private jet!

The final reason that this flight would not have pleased people, particularly residents in the regions of St Genis and Ferney-Voltaire regions, would have been its flight path. Clearly, it needs to go to the east, but the takeoff direction that evening was to the south west (over Vernier). In order to turn towards its destination, the pilot did a U-turn to the right shortly after takeoff, thus going over Satigny, St Genis and Ferney-Voltaire. This trajectory is known by the name KONIL.

Why is this bad? Well, the communes in France which are under this KONIL trajectory have been complaining about the noise from its use for many years (and when I play golf in Bretigny I often understand why!). As a result, the KONIL trajectory has been banned for all particularly noisy aircraft and the Geneva Airport management has agreed that this trajectory will cease to be used after 10pm. It is dfficult to see how 22h28 can be classed as before 10pm!

In summary, a small Roumanian jet comes to Geneva for half a day and then leaves very late at night following a trajectory which should not normally be used after 10pm!

Enough reasons to ask for an explanation? I certainly think so, though I doubt that one would be forthcoming!


An unusual, old and noisy aircraft

A recent visitor to Geneva airport: an old, rather noisy and rarely seen aircraft from Kazakhstan

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15:15 Posted in Noisy aircraft | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: aircraft, noise, geneva, airport | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook