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Instrument Approach Briefings Have Key Elements

The purpose of an instrument approach procedure is to allow pilots to transition from the instrument environment to the visual environment. Instrument approaches come with clearly defined procedures...

 

Join MnDOT Aeronautics at EAA AirVenture 2022 in Oshkosh

In 2021, over 608,000 attendees visited Experimental Aircraft Association's AirVenture. In 2022, MnDOT Aeronautics will again be at AirVenture, hosting a booth to promote the many aviation...

 

Change Is In The Air At MnDOT Aeronautics

If you are a regular customer or partner of MnDOT’s Office of Aeronautics, then you are likely already aware of the long-term staffing transition that began several years ago and is very much still in process today. My goal in writing this is to...

 

New Minnesota ForeFlight Content Packs Get Refinements

MnDOT Aeronautics added a new feature to the Minnesota Airport Directory and Travel Guide three years ago. We developed a ForeFlight Content Pack and made it available for anyone to download and add to their ForeFlight app. The Minnesota Airport...

 

Pilot-Controlled Lighting Tips, Reporting Needs

Most folks who are not involved with aviation wouldn't know that a radio pulse sequence is used to "key-up" the runway lighting system, as the pilot is on approach. The average citizen may think that...

 

Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Registration Changes

The Minnesota Department of Transportation's Office of Aeronautics is responsible for collecting aircraft registration, sales and use taxes as required by law. Of the 7,877 total aircraft registered...

 

State Aviation System Plan Update Underway

The Minnesota Department of Transportation is updating the Minnesota State Aviation System Plan. The MnSASP documents the performance of the current aviation system, and provides guidance for the...

 

VFR, IFR Aircraft 'Uncontrolled Airport' Operations

We tend to use the term Uncontrolled Airport to describe airports without control towers or airports with non-operating control towers. The current FAA circular with the regulatory, recommended...

 

Minnesota Airport Development Funding Overview

As everyone knows, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought a whirlwind of new experiences for most people, at work and at home. MnDOT Aeronautics is also no stranger to new tasks. Over the past year, the Airport Development section of Aeronautics has been...

 

MnDOT Aeronautics Signs AWOS Vendor Agreement

It’s 5 a.m., and you’re beginning to hear the birds calling in the beautiful day as you sit outdoors sipping your morning cup of Joe. You’re looking ahead to the 7:15 a.m. tee time with your other flying friends at the city of Buffalo – Wild...

 

How COVID-19 Changed Things For Pilots

In March of 2020 my family and I took a vacation to Mexico. Upon arriving at the airport, I wondered if I was making a big mistake. At the time I wasn’t worried about shortages of meat or paper products. What was troubling me was how this mystery v...

 

Flight Risk Assessment Tools Remain Essential

As aviators, we know flying can be a highly rewarding activity. The sense of accomplishment which results from a well-executed flight is hard to beat. However, flying can also be a high-risk activity. Weather, terrain, aircraft unfamiliarity, pilot...

 

MnDOT, NASA Move Forward With Collaboration

In June, the Minnesota Department of Transportation's Aeronautics office announced that it had signed a Collaborative Partnership agreement with NASA's Advanced Air Mobility team to plan for the...

 

Hangar Loan Program Provides Aircraft Storage Funding

Funding for airport projects in Minnesota comes from a variety of different sources. One of the more unique programs is Minnesota's Hangar Loan Program. Rather than force hangar projects to compete...

 

Helicopter Air Ambulances Are Key Aviation Players

In my time as a pilot the air medical flying was never in my purview. It wasn't in alignment with any of my disciplines. Or, so I thought. As a pilot, each flight is mission-centric. Whether it be...

 

MnDOT Weather Computers Get An Update

Over the past 30 years, we have seen a lot of changes in our ability to gather and display weather information at Minnesota's local airports. MnDOT has a goal to make it as easy as possible for genera...

 

Explore Minnesota By Air This Fall

Explore Minnesota is encouraging people to get out and explore the rainbow of colorful fall foliage in Minnesota. To find your True North visit: Minnesota Vacations & Travel Guide: Explore...

 

Air Mobility Strategic Plan Looks To Future

The Minnesota Department of Transportation's Office of Aeronautics is developing an air mobility strategic plan to prepare for Minnesota's future as aviation technology evolves. The new Air Mobility S...

 

Airport Maintenance From A Pilot's Perspective

As pilots, we have a lot to think about when preparing for a flight. In fact, we're legally obligated. The Federal Regulation regarding Preflight Action (91.103), says, "Each pilot in command shall,...

 

Bringing Clearance Delivery Into The 21st Century

For pilots – whether seasoned or novice – receiving an Instrument Flight Rules clearance is not a new concept. The delivery never varies from the standard C.R.A.F.T. format we've all been taught...

 

Improved Internet Coming To Minnesota Airports

MnDOT's Office of Aeronautics has been working on several programs to improve communication services at Minnesota's local general aviation airports. The first of these improvements – improved...

 

What's a Hangar For, Anyway?

When asked recently to write about hangar usage, I immediately thought back to my manager days at a local FBO in the early 2000s. Even then, understanding what was allowed to be stored in a hangar, was a regular question raised by myself and others....

 

Happy Spring Minnesota Aviators!

As I write this, temperatures are far below zero and the decidedly non-gopher rodent in Punxsutawney Pennsylvania told me there are weeks of winter ahead. Still, I can’t help but think of spring, new flowers budding, birds chirping, and the smell...

 

Statewide Automatic Weather Observation Systems

I started learning how to fly back in 1981–82. One of the things I remember most was trying to understand weather. I had to understand my personal limits and how weather could determine a decision to fly or not. I recall struggling with the...

 

Planning For Disaster: Take Action Through Local Zoning Ordinances

The successful landing of an aircraft isn’t usually something to write about, but in December, Minneapolis pilot Craig Gifford made his most noteworthy touchdown. After an engine failure late on the night of Dec. 3, 2020, Gifford guided his...

 

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