Most people, unless they’ve been a part of an aircraft’s cabin crew, are unaware of the hours spent in safety training that flight attendants have undergone in order to be properly prepared for an emergency. The most that the average citizen sees of these flight attendants is during boarding time and during the air safety instructionals that are given prior to flying. But behind the scenes, these flight attendants not only train for providing safety instructions, but on how to prevent injuries, predict potential threats, and handle emergency situations. 


From even before you board an aircraft, the cabin crew is already at task with ensuring your safety. Their first step is to do a pre flight check, where they inspect the plane and ensure that everything is properly functioning. This includes the galley, cabin, safety equipment, crew seat, crew rest area and lavatories.

Once everyone has sat down, it’s the responsibility of the flight attendants to show you where the exits are, go over rules and flight etiquette, and demonstrate what you should do in case of any emergencies (e.g., an emergency landing). After that, the flight attendants go about their business with distributing food and drinks via their meal cart and tending to any other needs. While you might think this is the extent of their work, they’re actually doing a lot more. The flight attendants, simultaneously tending to their other responsibilities, must be on constant vigilance of the passengers, to see if any person demonstrates any strange or suspicious behavior. 

Needless to say, flight attendants and the cabin crew put in an enormous amount of effort in ensuring passenger safety. For information on aviation regulations or acquiring aircraft parts, consult the experts at NSN Axis, the premier supplier of military, marine, and aviation parts. 

At NSN Axis, owned and operated by ASAP Semiconductor, we can help you find all the unique parts for the aerospace, civil aviation, and defense industries. We’re always available and ready to help you find all the parts and equipment you need, 24/7-365. For a quick and competitive quote, email us at sales@nsnaxis.com or call us at +1-269-264-4495. 

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Aircraft flying at lower altitudes need to be aware of nearby obstructions and buildings, for the obvious reason of ensuring that they don’t accidentally collide with them. During the night, warning lights and signals are used on both temporary and permanent structures that could be a hazard for aircraft passing nearby. Also called obstruction lights, these systems come in several different colors, shapes, and intensities to prevent a collision from happening.


The recommendations on the design of the lighting systems, its features, and standards can vary based on elements like topographical features, geographic locations, overall layout, and the weather patterns of the structures that need to be lit. A building in an area with high amounts of fog, for instance, will need stronger lights than one that is not. Generally, there is no single standard that defines the design and installation of obstruction lighting, as there are so many variables from one place to another, but there are governing agencies that regulate their installation and usage.

The International Civil Aviation Organization issued a regulation regarding the use of aircraft warning signals. The standard light signals can be distinguished by a set of parameters: flash rates, light color, beam pattern, and light intensity. ICAO divides warning signals into three main groups:

  • High intensity warning signals or lights: these warning lights must be used if there is a presence of an object that is taller than the surrounding ground level by 150 meters or more.
  • Medium intensity warning lights: These must be used if the height of the object is greater than 45 meters than the surrounding ground level.
  • Low intensity lights: these are used if an object is less than 45 meters taller than the surrounding ground level.

Lights should be installed such that the object is indicated from every possible angle, meaning that the total number of lights used is ultimately dependent on the structure’s diameter and size. Lights should be first placed at the top of the object, and arranged such that they can indicate the edges of the structure. 

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Putting an inexperienced trainee pilot in the air can be a dangerous prospect. Even with an experienced instructor at the controls, it is far better that a trainee get experience with the aircraft before they ever take to the skies. Flight simulators, capable of replicating the experience of flying an aircraft, are therefore an excellent way to introduce trainees without putting them in the air. In this blog, we will review a brief history of the flight simulator.


The first form of flight simulator was for aircraft gunners during World War 1. Gunners were trained in deflection shooting, and how to account for the travel time of the bullet between them and their target by aiming ahead of the enemy and leading the target. To develop this skill, gunner trainees would be placed on a trailer attached to a truck and execute drive-bys on stationary targets. 

The best-known early flight simulator is the Link Trainer, developed by Edwin Link in 1927. Dissatisfied with the amount of flight training available, Link invented a ground-based device, a pneumatic motion platform driven by inflatable bellows that simulated pitch and roll cues, while a vacuum motor rotated the platform to simulate yaw. Inside, a generic replica cockpit with working instruments , pilots were allowed to fly by instrument in a safe environment. While flight schools and the US Army Air Force were initially uninterested, their view soon changed in 1934, when the Army Air Force was contracted by the government to fly postal mail. This included flying in poor weather conditions, which AAF pilots were not prepared for. After several pilot fatalities, the USAAF purchased several Link Trainers to be better prepared.

World War 2 was when the simulator truly broke through, however. With the surging demand for pilots, over 10,000 Link Trainers were produced to train over 500,000 new pilots for the United States and her allies. Almost all USAAF pilots were trained in a Link Trainer. 

Modern flight simulators take several forms. Cockpit procedures trainers (CPT) are used to practice basic cockpit procedures, such as processing emergency checklists, and to familiarize trainees with the cockpit itself. Some systems may be simulated or not, and the aerodynamic model of the simulated aircraft is generic, if present at all.

The most advanced simulators, as classified by the Federal Aviation Authority, are Full Flight Simulator Level D. FFS Level D simulators are mounted on hydraulic actuators that can simulate all six degrees of freedom, and feature fully enclosed cockpits with multiple mounted screens, with projected terrain and weather for a simulated flying environment. Along with a fully accurate aerodynamic model for the simulated aircraft, this allows for as realistic a flying experience as there can be, without actually taking off.

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Like all machinery, aircraft need spare parts for when their components fail and break down. A major part of stocking spare parts revolves around dealing with unexpected breakdowns. The mean time between unscheduled removals (MTBUR) is the average interval between breakdowns, but in smaller fleets of aircraft that have a smaller sample size, the actual interval can vary wildly. Therefore, airlines typically follow schedules that plan for the “sooner” half of “sooner or later.” Even then, the variance in breakdown intervals can mean that owning a large stock of spare parts is too expensive to be feasible.


Therefore, airlines will often share access to parts pools, splitting the risk with each other. Even larger airlines will do this at outstations with few flights, in case they have an aircraft on ground (AOG) situation that needs immediate attention. Accessing a parts pool with its own maintenance team can save money as well. However, pooling parts means reduced control over assets, which for carriers concerned with part quality, configuration, and documentation. Dedicated parts pools serving one airline fulfill these needs for control, but the tradeoff is less efficiency that wider pools provide.

One example of parts pooling is Luxembourg-based International Airlines Technical Pool (IATP). For over seventy years, IATP has let 104 airlines share parts, equipment, line maintenance, and aircraft recovery kits at over four hundred different airports. At each airport, IATP assigns a value, and each member there pays an equal share of 20% of this value per year. In return, members can borrow needed parts for fourteen days, with a seven-day grace period to return it. IATP also offers the skills and services to install needed parts, an attractive offer for carriers that might not be able to afford teams of their own in every airport they operate out of. While most airliners carry minimum stocks of the most essential and frequently used components, the economics favors using pools at outstations.

Another example of parts pooling is Spairliners, which manages pools, repairs, and support for Airbus A380s and Embraer E-Jets. A joint venture between Lufthansa Technik and Air France Industries based out of Hamburg, Spairliners’ pools support flight-hour programs, including line-replaceable units (LRU) common to many operators, but excluding carrier-specific consumables and cabin equipment. Head of sales and marketing Fabrice Dumas, claims that pool-supported programs have become more popular for several reasons: modern-day repairs require more investment in equipment, finances encourage tighter cost control, airlines are reluctant to invest cash in stocking parts, and pool-supported flight-hour maintenance turns fixed costs into charges that vary with schedule, thus lowering overall expenditures. 

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Drone” is a common term that is used to refer to an unmanned aircraft. In military terminology it is referred to as an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), or an unmanned aircraft system (UAS). It is a machine that can be maneuvered with a remote control or fly autonomously through pre-programmed flight paths embedded in their systems. Drones are designed with onboard sensors and GPS navigation which allow it to fly seamlessly.  

Drones are constructed with light composite materials to reduce the overall weight and maximize maneuverability. The strength of the composite material allows military drones to be operated at high altitudes, fly at higher speeds, and increase fuel efficiency. Drones typically have two parts to them: the body and the control system. The nose of the drone is where all the sensors and navigational systems are installed. The rest of the body is used for miscellaneous drone technology systems. An essential component that all drones share is the requirement for a waterproof engine shell in case it enters water. 

For decades, drones have commonly been associated with military operations. Drones don’t require a pilot, don’t require rest, and they can fly as long as its fuel capacity permits; therefore, they have played a critical role in intelligence, artillery spotting, target following and acquisition, battle damage assessment and reconnaissance, surveillance and force protection, and weaponry. In the past decade, drones have entered the commercial market and cannot be mistaken with military UAVs— these vehicles are much larger and more complex than the drones that are sold to the general public. 

Drones are similar to other aircraft in that they can be constructed and classified under two broad types: rotor (including single and multi-rotor) and fixed-wing (including the hybrid VTOL). They can be equipped with a wide array of sensors including distance sensors, chemical sensors, stabilization/orientation sensors, time-of-flight sensors, and much more. Thermal sensors play an integral part in surveillance and security purposes. Hyperspectral sensors have found a home in agriculture as they can assist in identifying minerals and vegetation, monitoring crop health, and observing water quality. 

The use of drones is quickly expanding and adapting into different markets. Hollywood utilizes them in movies, photography, commercials, and websites. Government agencies use drones for weather monitoring services, such as observing storms and hurricanes, and use them for many other applications. They’re also used for search and rescue missions in wildlife terrain or expansive territories. 

There’s no doubt that drones are among the most technologically advanced devices in modern aeronautics and robotics. This is an exciting time to see how drones will evolve. 

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The Amazon Prime service has changed the way consumers around the world shop. With the capacity to offer product delivery at wicked fast turnarounds, it’s not surprising that Amazon has invested in an aircraft freighter fleet of its own. In just three years, Amazon Prime Air, now coined Amazon Air, has expanded to a fleet of 40 leased aircraft in operation— with plans to grow their fleet to a total of 50 in the next two years.

Currently, Amazon is leasing its freighters through Air Transportation Services Group (ATSG INC.) and Atlas Air. Of the 40 aircraft in operation under Amazon Air, 32 of them are Boeing 767 cargo aircraft. Amazon has officially announced that they plan to add 10 additional Boeing 767- 300 cargo jets to their fleet over the next two years.

Amazon previously employed the services of FedEx and UPS to facilitate its deliveries. After a huge delivery failure in 2013 where thousands of Amazon Prime packages did not reach customers on a promised Christmas deadline, the company decided to invest heavily in the development of its own air fleet to speed up the delivery process and provide more control over logistics. In using its own private aircraft, Amazon has the potential to save 2 billion USD per year on shipping expenses. With demand increasing for more products at faster delivery rates, Amazon hopes that its air services will streamline the distribution of goods between hubs.

In 2017, the company announced a $1.5 billion investment in a cargo hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. The purchase integrates 210 acres of land for the project, which will have the capacity to house 100 freighter jets by its completion in 2021. Amazon already operates cargo hubs at Chicago Rockford International Airport and Fort Worth Alliance Airport. With Amazon’s expansion and Boeing's dominant presence as an aerospace company, there is certainly potential for a sustained business relationship between the two American industry giants.

At NSN Axis, owned and operated by ASAP Semiconductor, we can help you find all the aerospace parts manufacturers and aircraft parts you need, new or obsolete. As a premier supplier of parts for the aerospace, civil aviation, and defense industries, we’re always available and ready to help you find all the parts and equipment you need, 24/7x365. For a quick and competitive quote, email us at sales@nsnaxis.com or call us at +1-269-264-4495.


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Aircraft Camera System Parts have helped tremendously in assuring safety and quality during in-flight operations, and, as of recently, have been an effective way to expand the aviation industry to a larger demographic. However, under current Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) guidelines, there is a distinct lack of regulation regarding window camera, such as Go-Pro attachments, on approved aircrafts. This lack of specific wordage regarding camera attachments leads to confusion on whether or not these are acceptable modifications to aircrafts under Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR). 


Attaching anything to an aircraft is considered a modification. By this premise, camera mounts would be modifications, and as such they should be regulated under AC 43-210A. Within the classification of modifications there are major and minor type changes. Minor type changes have no effect on weight, balance, structural strength, or overall airworthiness of the aircraft. Any modification that has an impact on any of those aspects would be a major type change and would need a Structural Type Certificate (STC) request to be approved by the FAA. Small camera mounts, depending on their placement, are likely to be minor type changes. 

Minor type changes are further classified into major and minor alterations. Major alterations and minor alterations are differentiated by the use of elementary tools for installation. Elementary tools are any operation of installment that do not involve riveting, welding, or any more complex procedure. If an alteration requires anything more than elementary tools it is a major alteration. Major alterations have to be approved by the FAA whereas minor alterations only need to be verified in an airframe and powerplant (A&P) mechanic’s log book. If the mount for a camera does not require the use of welding or riveting for installation and does not interfere with the airworthiness of the aircraft, then it only needs an entry in an A&P log book. However, according to the FAA, experimental or at home-build aircraft can have any kind of alteration completed, as long as the modifications do not exceed the type change threshold. 

Temporary attachments have little-to-no regulations. Temporary attachments are not considered to be modifications of any kind, and therefore do not need verification of any kind. However, under current FAA guidelines, there is no definition for what is classified as a temporary attachment. Thus, “temporary” camera mounts should be FAR approved due to the burden of lack of specificity. This creates a gray space in what is acceptable and unacceptable and could potentially compromise the integrity of flight. If you are planning on installing a temporary attachment, keep in mind how that installation will affect the airworthiness of the flight. Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should. Safety should always be your first consideration. 


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