News of the exam testing centre in Mt Hagen at MAF HQ is confirmed.

Having the test facility here will save thousands of kina in travel costs and benefit not only MAF but others in the region needing to sit engineering exams. CASA PNG is also converting pilot exams to the online versions and should be ready for delivery in time for the October sitting.

It is expected that exams will take place monthly with 9 seats available for booking. CASA PNG invigilators will travel to Mt Hagen to deliver the exams using our facility.  Exam bookings will be done through the CASA PNG exam portal. They will be on a first come, first served basis. Extra sittings can be booked if the need arises in any one month.

CASA PNG courses such as Weight and Balance, Inspection Authorisation and Maintenance Control are currently all delivered at the Port Moresby location. However, CASA PNG is also developing these courses for delivery at our site here in Mt Hagen.

Traditionally these courses require 12 or more seats for the instructor to travel to deliver the course, which usually means only one course per year if the required seats are filled. Often operators do not find out that a course has been cancelled until very close to the scheduled date. CASA PNG recognises this and will be making the courses available by travelling to aviation hubs such as Mt Hagen and Madang etc.

An Internet Miracle

observed by Rick Higlett, our IT Manager

I am not sure any of us realise how much God was instrumental in correcting the internet woes for the testing by CASA on 15th June.

Two weeks earlier when Tom mentioned that the testing was coming, we had just begun a trial of ExcitePNG’s vSAT and it was working well so we expected that the tests would succeed easily. But…

The day before the CASA testers were due, the internet was so bad that I alerted out IT Systems Manager, Nigel Gorry, in Cairns.

Nigel’s tests pointed to a problem with ExcitePNG’s ability to route our traffic through their router into the internet. This was only discovered after 4pm on Wednesday, the day prior to the CASA testing. Because of the urgency of having it working before the next morning, Nigel redirected all traffic on Excite through the Virtual Private Network to Cairns office and let their router manage our internet access.

This worked exceptionally well but was not suitable as a long-term solution because of the data limits in Cairns. After the testing had been completed, Excite brought in their own solution: to provide us with our own public IP address. This gives us direct access to the internet, bypassing their router with its limitations. Our initial experience with this solution is that it is working well but I am continuing to monitor it for the moment.

When we look back on the events, our misplaced confidence, the timing and the solutions, we look again on the awesome wonder of His grace and blessing and give Him the Glory!