Spring 2024

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Spring 2024

We could justifiably have billed this spring 2024 edition of EVA as the People & Passion Special. People feature strongly as the cornerstone of every article, while their passion for the aviation industry, and business aviation in particular, shines through.

Don Campion, co-founder of Florida’s Banyan Air Service, is about as passionate an aviation person as you could hope to find. His story begins with flying to school in bushplanes as a child in Africa, progresses through road trips between Toronto and Miami in a Honda Civic, and includes creating one of America’s busiest non-airline airports.

Gulfstream president Mark Burns will need no introduction to many readers. He received the Lifetime Aviation Industry Leader Award at the 21st Annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards ceremony in January. Afterwards, he reflected: “This recognition is very humbling for me, but I think it’s really a testament to the more than 20,000 Gulfstream employees who are some of the best in our industry.” Passion and humility make for a powerful combination in his case.

Over the previous 18 months or so we have explored aspects of crew training, from emergency evacuation, through medical emergency to maintenance. In this edition we conclude the series with an examination of pilot training, from the viewpoints of AXIS Flight Simulation, CAE, FlightSafety International and Loft Dynamics. Thanks to Doug May, EVP Operations at FlightSafety, we learn that OEM test pilots ‘fly’ new aircraft simulators to ensure they represent the airplane accurately, while Loft Dynamics founder and CEO Fabi Riesen enthuses over the power of virtual reality in helicopter pilot training.

Satcom Direct’s expanding portfolio of connectivity solutions, hardware, now including Plane Simple antennas, and close industry relationships are the subject of our cover story. Company president Chris Moore is always a delight to interview. Like your editor, Chris is an unashamed avgeek and our conversations typically need nudging back on track as we follow aviation tangents in no way related to what we’re supposed to be talking about.

This time around we managed to explore the burgeoning success of SD’s Plane Simple antennas, including its forthcoming electronically scanned antenna (ESA) technology, the potential offered by low earth orbit satellite constellations, and the combination of LEO service with existing but evolving GEO satellites. Then we digressed into a conversation about the Royal Air Force’s retired fleet of Tornado attack aircraft, nothing of which you’ll find in these pages.

Truth be told, aviation inspires too much passion and enthusiasm to be contained in any one article or interview, and that’s why we’re launching the EVA Media podcast. Featuring myself and EVA Sales Manager Mo Banks as regular presenters, the show will give plenty of time to guests. Loosely themed around business aviation, the conversation is likely to follow any number of unexpected avenues and is sure to provide even the most passionate enthusiast with a thought-provoking aviation fix.

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