Every air passenger knows that as a plane descends it is time to fasten your seat belt. Charlene Sarieann Harriott, a passenger on an American Airlines flight from Dallas, Texas to Charlotte, North Carolina, defied this rule and did plenty more besides.
When the plane was just 200 feet (60 meters) in the air, Harriott suddenly rose from her seat in the back and rushed towards the cockpit for no apparent reason.
Ignoring all calls by flight attendants to take her seat, the woman proceeded. It took three flight attendants to chase down and overpower Harriott, while she furiously resisted any attempt to rein her in.
The FBI, which brought criminal charges against Harriot, reported that she kicked two of them in the arm, leg and abdomen and bit one flight attendant till she bled. The crew were forced to use duct tape and zip ties around the woman’s ankles and wrists to restrain her.
Upon landing, the FBI apprehended Harriott and took her into custody. It later accused her of “knowingly and intentionally” disrupted the flight.
The crew were treated at the company’s clinic at the airport.
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Sustainability isn’t the future — it is now. On Tuesday, a Qantas plane became the first in the world to be partly powered by mustard seeds. After taking off from the United States, the aircraft landed in Melbourne, Australia in Tuesday.
The Guardian reports that the Boeing Dreamliner 787-9 used a blended fuel that was 10 percent derived from the brassica carinata, an industrial type of mustard seed that can function as a fallow crop. This reduced carbon emissions by 7 percent compared with the airline’s usual flight over the typical LA to Melbourne route. When compared pound for pound with jet fuel, the mustard seed biogas reduces emissions by 80 percent over the fuel’s entire life cycle.
“Almost within a day after harvesting, they can press the oil out in their own shed and use it straight into their tractors,” said Daniel Tan of the University of Sydney. The agriculture expert added that mustard seed can double as a valuable crops and a source of fuel for farmers who seek to cultivate crops in a more sustainable fashion.
“Basically it’s good for growing, and also farmers can also use it. If they grow wheat every year it’s not good for the soil. They can grow mustard seed in between the wheat crops, every second or third year, press the oil and use it locally or export it for use in aviation fuel,” added Tan.
“A lot of the biodiesel now being processed is actually from waste oil from places like fish and chip shops. A lot of these oils can be processed, but the problem is that they can’t get consistent supply. The big problem with the biodisel industry in Australia is mainly the continuity of supply.”
One hectare, or approximately 2.5 miles, can be used to produce an astonishing 400 liters of aviation fuel or 1,400 liters of renewable diesel, reports The Guardian.
This isn’t the first progressive move made by Qantas. In 2012, the airline partnered with Jetstar to trial Australia’s first domestic biofuel flights with a blend comprised of 50 percent cooking oil. It successfully flew from Sydney to Adelaide and from Melbourne to Hobart. By 2020, Qantas aims to use a renewable fuel for all Los Angeles-based flights, supplied by US company SG Preston. Qantas says the fuel does not necessarily need to be derived from mustard seeds.
In the near future, Qantas will set up an Australian biorefinery in partnership with Agrisoma BIosciences. The Canadian company extracted the carinate-derived fuel for this latest flight. According to a Qantas spokesperson, biofuel blends are capped at 50 percent. However, new specifications could permit 100 percent biofuel flights in the future.
In 2017, air travel accounted for 2.5% of all carbon dioxide emissions. By 2050, the total emissions are expected to quadruple. By relying on biofuels, airlines are helping to reduce carbon emissions and, as a result, air pollution.
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An Instagram fitness model was “humiliated” after being removed from an American Airlines flight following a row with staff.
Jen Selter, who has 11 million followers on Instagram, posted footage of her arguing with a pilot and a flight attendant on the delayed flight from Miami to New York on 27 January.
“I did nothing wrong but got kicked off the plane,” she wrote, adding she had the “worst experience” following a delay which left the aircraft stuck on the runway for two hours.
The 24-year-old claims she and her sister were told to leave the aircraft following a disagreement with a male attendant when she got up to put her coat away and stretch her legs.
She argues that two other passengers had been allowed to go to the bathroom when she stood up, adding she was being sarcastic after responding “yeah” when asked by the attendant, “Do you want to get kicked off the plane?”
Ms Selter says the attendant told her to sit down and they began arguing resulting in the pilot calling the police who then arrived on board.
“The crew is asking for you guys to be removed off the plane,” the pilot tells them in one clip.
In another video, a police officer tells the sisters: “American Airlines calls the shots. They don’t want you to fly on their plane today.”
Ms Selter told the New York Post: “It was humiliating. They made me feel like a terrible person, and I did nothing wrong.”
A spokesperson for American Airlines said in a statement: “Ms. Selter was asked to leave the aircraft after a disagreement occurred Saturday night at Miami International Airport (MIA).
“American offered her hotel accommodations and transportation, which she declined. She flew on American Sunday morning back to New York (LGA) – arriving around 8:30 a.m. ET yesterday morning.”
Ms Selter has vowed “to never fly American Airlines again”.
In addition to 90-percent regular jet fuel, the airplane burned 10 percent of blended fuel, which has been derived from brassica carinata, an industrial type of mustard seed that functions as a fallow crop. The seed can be grown by farmers in between regular crop cycles. One hectare of seeds yields 400 liters of biofuel and 1400 liters of renewable diesel.
Right now, over the Pacific Ocean, a Qantas 787 is on its way to Melbourne from LA.
Why are we telling you this? The Boeing jet is being partially fueled by 24,000 kg of mustard seed. It’s the first ever U.S.-Australia biofuel flight.
“Farm to flight” is a thing, people. pic.twitter.com/61BhY1169L
— Morning Brew (@MorningBrew) January 29, 2018
The process has been developed by Canadian agricultural-technology company Agrisoma Biosciences. According to its CEO Steve Fabijanski, mustard seeds are not only easily converted into jet fuel, but there are other advantages including producing animal meal after the oil extraction.
“It’s a tough crop. It grows where other crops won’t grow. It doesn’t need much water and it’s well understood by farmers,” he said as cited by the Australian website Traveller. “They can grow it and do well with it.”
Carinata-derived fuel reportedly offers more than 80 percent reduction in carbon emissions compared with traditional jet fuel.
Qantas’ historic flight comes as the airline was named the least efficient carrier in the region. The International Council on Clean Transportation reported this month that the airline burnt the most carbon of major airlines that fly across the Pacific.
The CEO of Qantas International, Alison Webster, said that despite the unusual fuel, Monday’s flight would be routine.
“The biofuel goes through exactly the same certification and tests as standard aviation,” which includes engineering, safety and performance checks.
The company aims to have flights running regularly on biofuel (not necessarily carinata-derived fuel) by 2020. According to its spokeswoman, Qantas plans setting up an Australian biorefinery in the near future in partnership with Agrisoma Biosciences.
For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section
The 24 year old posted several clips of the encounter, filmed by her sister, on Twitter which showed the aftermath of an argument between Selter and a male flight attendant.
Selter, who has 11.7 million Instagram followers, says the delayed flight had been sitting on the tarmac for more than two hours on Saturday night, when she got up to stretch and put her jacket away.
Selter says a flight attendant yelled at her to sit down so they could take off, but when she told him to “relax” because the two people sitting next to her were in the bathroom, he asked her if she wanted to be kicked off the plane. She jokingly replied “yes.”
The attendant, however, contacted the pilot who called police to escort Selter off the flight.
“It was humiliating. They made me feel like a terrible person, and I did nothing wrong,” Selter told the New York Post.
In a second video an airport security officer can be heard telling Selter: “American Airlines calls the shots. They don’t want you to fly on their plane today.”
“All of a sudden five cops came up,” said Selter. “I was literally getting attacked.”
As well as Selter and her sister, a male passenger who was sitting in front of them and who can be heard accusing the flight attendant of harassment was also booted off the plane. A fourth passenger then chose to disembark in response to how the group was treated.
A representative for the airline told RT.com that they tried to accommodate Selter:
“Ms. Selter was asked to leave the aircraft after a disagreement occurred last night at Miami International Airport (MIA),” they said. “American offered her hotel accommodations and transportation, which she declined.”
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The Russian Air Force Colonel and fighter pilot turned cosmonaut is currently on his third mission to the International Space Station (ISS), having previously been a member of expeditions 29/30 and 42/43.
According to Shkaplerov, “People often ask if we fly on vacuum cleaners at ISS?” Well those people need wonder no more as this video shows.
Shkaplerov admits that he had never tried to fly a vacuum cleaner in a (sort of) vacuum, but that didn’t stop him trying on Saturday while cleaning the Earth-orbiting space station. The intrepid Russian shared a video of his maiden ‘flight’, which lasted less than half a minute, on Twitter.
He even had a fitting soundtrack for his epic voyage – R Kelly’s nineties hit ‘ I believe I can fly’.
This is not the first time Shkaplerov has made headlines with his space research. Back in November he said that bacteria found on the hull of ISS could have come from outer space. “Bacteria that had not been there during the launch of the ISS module were found on the swabs,” Shkaplerov said. “So they have flew from somewhere in space and settled on the outside hull.”
Shkaplerov is one of the more social media savvy cosmouts, treating his followers to a host of arresting images from the space station, from glaciers in Patagonia to the vastness of his homeland.
Фотографии моей Родины: Балаклава, Севастополь и Крымский мост. Контролирую строительство моста из Космоса. 🚀Подтверждаю, все идет по графику! 😉
The images of my Homeland from space: Balaklava, Sevastopol and the Crimean bridge. pic.twitter.com/pDqTMbotaX
— Anton Shkaplerov (@Anton_Astrey) December 28, 2017
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have developed a series of modular flying robots that can autonomously assemble themselves in midair and fly.
In the video above, the robots can be seen hovering near one another and then slowly moving close until magnets attached to each corner of a vehicle’s cage quickly snaps them together.
The system, called ModQuad, is just in its early stage of development, but the researchers say they can imagine scenarios where much larger drone systems with such autonomous capability might actually be able to self-assemble over an impassable chasm and create a bridge, for example.
The system is modeled after biological systems like ant or bee colonies, where collective effort can accomplish goals like transporting material or building large structures. Think of army ants that can build bridges to overcome water hazards.
Source Article from https://qz.com/1175733/these-flying-robots-can-self-assemble-in-flight/
January 9th, 2018
Via: USA Today:
Are you a Las Vegas-based flight attendant looking for work and able to keep a secret(s)? Do you feel positively about working for an airline that sort of doesnâ€™t exist? Happen to have a Top-Secret clearance with the U.S. government, or think you could snag one?
If so, the perfect job just opened up.
Janet, a classified airline that runs commuter flights to some of the most secretive and closely guarded government facilities in the U.S., appears to be hiring a flight attendant. The job posting appeared recently on the website for AECOM, which operates a small fleet of aircraft out of a discreet but heavily guarded terminal at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas.
Very little is known about Janet, which is so secretive that the U.S. government does not admit that it exists. The planes use the call sign “Janet,” which some suggest stands for “Just Another Non-Existent Terminal.”
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