The President's Perspective
AMA President Bob Brown
A handful of modelers can certainly make life miserable for all of us. In March one modeler flew higher than the full-scale airplanes on approach to a major airport. Pilots in full-scale aircraft noted this unsafe practice and contacted the local control tower. The FAA took specific note of this occurrence.
At roughly the same time, a First-Person View (FPV) video popped up on YouTube showing an FPV aircraft flying north of Austin, Texas, above the clouds at more than 1,000 feet above ground level. Although it’s unlikely that the flier was an AMA member, this incident resulted in a visit to Austin-area modelers by an FAA aviation safety inspector from the local Flight Standards District Offices.
Another modeler frequented the airspace near a major sports arena and then boasted of his accomplishments in numerous posts on YouTube. Fortunately, this person was arrested and jailed.
The Academy does not condone flying outside of the guidelines of the AMA Safety Code. As AMA president, I appreciate the enthusiasm of the FPV community; however, two of the issues I mentioned were utilizing FPV and undoubtedly illustrate the lack of compliance with AMA’s safety guidelines.
NPRM Delayed Again
The FAA issues have been somewhat quiet this month. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) has again been delayed. No specific reasons have been stated for the delay.
Last month I mentioned the necessity to review the current FAI programs. We met with Jonathan Gaffney at the National Aeronautic Association office in Washington, D.C. As a result, all United States air sports organizations will meet in June. This meeting should result in a positive direction for FAI participation in our country.
We are also meeting with FAI Secretary General Jean-Marc Badan. I hope the various groups can realize the need for a positive international alliance.
The ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum in Oregon has loaned AMA’s National Model Aviation Museum a great new exhibit entitled “Take Flight.” The theme of the hands-on exhibit is to teach the principles of flight including thrust, drag, and lift to middle school students.
This is one reason for you and your family to make an excursion to the museum. If you can’t do that, check out the AMA Flight School online at www.modelaircraft.org/education/amaflightschool/index.html. Drag, lift, weight, and thrust are illustrated in an elementary fashion. Everyone will enjoy these fine efforts!
The 2012 Indoor Nats will probably be taking place in Johnson City, Tennessee, when you receive this magazine and the outdoor portion of the 2012 Nats will start in Muncie, Indiana, on July 9. If you would like to see the largest model airplane competition in the world, stop by Muncie, Indiana, sometime in July or early August. The schedule for the entire summer is posted on the AMA website at www.modelaircraft.org/events/nats/natsschedule.aspx.
There is no cost for spectators. Why not visit the Nats and the museum at the same time?
You can also follow the Nats through the daily newsletter posted on the AMA website at www.modelaircraft.org/events/nats/natsnews.aspx.
This year’s election includes Districts II, IV, VI, VIII, X and a special election for District III. Nominations are due at AMA Headquarters by June 23, 2012.
Any AMA Open member may submit a nomination to the Nominating Committee. Article IX of the Bylaws defines who is eligible for nomination. MA