Posts tagged with "FAA"

Billionaire Tim Draper invests in a startup that has totally transformed aircraft spacing and seating

July 15, 2020

Zephyr Aerospace, a startup that hopes to totally transform the way in which economy class passengers experience air travel, announced on July 14 that it had  raised an undisclosed amount of funding from billionaire venture capitalist Tim Draper, who has previously backed Tesla, SpaceX, Coinbase and Twitter.

The investment will enable Zephyr Seat—a new airline seat and bed that offers a lie-flat accommodation and can be retrofitted to exiting commercial aircraft—to pass rigorous certification by the Federal Aviation Association and to continue direct engagements with prospective airlines and aircraft manufacturers. The “outside the box” design also meets social distancing requirements during the age of the pandemic—and features a double-decker design of single seats throughout the economy section.

“I’m sold on the design, I think it’s a great idea that is going for the right thing. Zephyr Seat is making all of our lives much better,” said Tim Draper. “If you are paying for Economy Class and can lie down, that’s huge.”

With most of the world in quarantine and eager to travel again, Zephyr Aerospace is committed to improving the travel experience for every traveler by making personal space and inflight sleep more safe and affordable.

The effects of the Covid-19 pandemic have had a significant impact on the travel industry and major airlines are faced with a decision to reinvent themselves and find better ways to serve the needs of their customers.

To support Zephyr’s mission to improve air travel and gain a financial stake in their success, visit their equity crowdfunding campaign on Republic (https://republic.co/zephyr-aerospace). This is the first time Zephyr Aerospace has accepted funding from outside investors and they are allowing people to invest as little as $100 in exchange for equity.

Research contact: @zephyrseat

As drones swarm the night skies over Colorado and Nebraska, authorities ask, ‘Who’s there?’

January 6, 2020

They come out at night: pinpoints of light swarming in the dark skies. They appear to be drones—flying in formation over rural Colorado and Nebraska. For weeks, they have dominated headlines in local newspapers, fueled intense speculation on social media, and unsettled residents; who have besieged law enforcement with calls, The Washington Post reports.

So far, the aircraft remain a mystery. Officials in multiple counties say they have not been able to determine who is operating them or why. The Federal Aviation Administration is now investigating, an agency spokesman told the Post on Thursday, January 2.

In the absence of information, wild theories abound in the small communities where the drones have been spotted, including government surveillance and alien activity. Others offered less-nefarious explanations, suggesting a private company is using them to map or survey land or, perhaps, practicing for drone shows.

But why wouldn’t such businesses have come forward with an explanation by now?

 “There are many theories about what is going on, but at this point, that’s all they are,” Sheriff Todd Combs of Yuma County, Colorado, wrote in a Facebook post. “I think we are all feeling a little bit vulnerable due to the intrusion of our privacy that we enjoy in our rural community, but I don’t have a solution or know of one right now.”

The drones, which The Denver Post estimates to be six feet in wingspan and flying in formations of 17, showed up in mid-December in northeastern Colorado. They emerge nightly around 7 p.m., flying in squares of about 25 miles and staying about 200 feet in the air, the newspaper reported. By about 10 p.m., they’re gone.

Local authorities say the mysterious visitors do not appear to be malicious and may not be breaking any laws. Combs noted in his post that they are operating in airspace controlled by the federal government and, as far as he could tell, abiding with federal regulations.

Yet the unexplained aircraft, buzzing above homes nightly, have still caused alarm — so much so that officials with multiple sheriff’s departments have cautioned residents against shooting them down.

“I have been made aware of several comments about shooting down a drone,” Morgan County, Colorado, Sheriff Dave Martin said in his own Facebook statement. “I ask that you NOT do this as it is a federal crime.”

Wyatt Harmon and his girlfriend, Chelsea Arnold, chased a cluster of drones after they flew over his property in the Colorado county of Washington. The couple tailed them for 15 miles, exceeding 70 mph, according to NBC’s TODAY show, which featured an interview with the two on December 31.

Harmon said during the interview that the aircraft could descend and take off “very fast.” He added,, “It’s kind of just scary. It’s more unnerving than anything.”

According to The Washington Post, now groups devoted to tracking the drones are  popping up on Facebook.

Research contact: @washingtonpost