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Volume 14, Number 1b
January 3, 2008
Announcing the Online MBA for Aviation Professionals
from Daniel Webster College

Did you know that professionals with an MBA earn an average of $10,000 to $30,000 more per year? Within 27 months, you can be one of them!

Daniel Webster College MBA for Aviation Professionals is a fully-accredited, 100%-online program built for the busy schedule of the aviation professional. Being "on the road" is no longer a barrier to career advancement. Call (866) 458-7525 or click here for more information.
Controller Impasse Continuesback to top 
Sponsor Announcement

The National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) wants nothing to do with a quiet offer from FAA Acting Administrator Bobby Sturgell to raise the pay of some members and offer other incentives to "settle" ongoing labor strife. The proposed deal was outlined in a memo to FAA managers on Monday. The FAA has declined detailed comment on the offer but NATCA President Pat Forrey dismissed it as "a desperate attempt by the FAA to try and stem the alarming rate of controller retirements and total attrition" he says is directly attributable to the contract imposed on the controllers in 2006. He said that until controllers have a negotiated contract, the current exodus of senior controllers is expected to continue. Forrey also went over Sturgell's head to Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters last week with a letter that expressed the same sentiments. He also asked her to impose flight restrictions at some of the country's busiest airports if there's no hope of the government returning to the bargaining table. More...

Zulu Time ... From Lightspeed
The new Zulu headset looks different because it is different. Made with magnesium, stainless steel, and four types of composite plastics, it's extremely durable and yet weighs just over 13 ounces. Rather than concentrating purely on cutting decibels, Lightspeed engineers looked at how pilots perceive noise at different frequencies. You get broader noise attenuation over the entire audible range. Zulu has more total noise cancellation than any headset on the market. Click here for a dealer near you.
Aviation Safetyback to top 

A 737-300 collided with a car on the runway on its takeoff roll Sunday morning, and the crash and the aftermath were caught on video by a passenger in a window seat just above the wing. The video, posted on YouTube, records a loud smashing sound and apparent turmoil in the cabin. The airplane was stopped on the airport and passengers were evacuated with no reports of injuries. "This was a serious incident in which the plane was damaged," said Valentin Iordache, a spokesperson for Bucharest's Otopeni airport, according to news24.com. The aircraft, operated by the Romanian airline Tarom, was carrying 120 passengers bound from Romania to a resort area in Egypt. It apparently struck a car that had been driven onto the runway to check the lighting. Visibility was poor due to thick fog. "A disaster was avoided thanks to the crew's professionalism," Tarom spokesman Gheorghe Barla told news24. He said the vehicle left on the runway was privately owned and had been "forgotten" there, and the control tower was unaware of its location. More...

The lead NTSB air safety investigator looking into last weekend’s fatal crash in California of a Cirrus SR22 Turbo piloted by Cirrus salesman Thomas Leveque told AVweb that she has "no reason to believe there was loss of any flight control prior to impact."Investigator Zoe Keliher, who works out of the NTSB’s Gardena, Calif., office, said she’s “focused on finding good reliable witnesses” and has already interviewed Leveque’s close friend, who told her Leveque was flying from San Carlos to Paso Robles on Sunday with the intention of spending the weekend with the friend and his wife. The friend told Keliher that Leveque flew past his house at 1,000-2,000 feet AGL, "as he had done many times before." Just prior to the fly-by, Leveque reportedly called the friend from his cellphone and "after a quick exchange, he hung up and the witness saw him do a series of descents and ascents followed by a turn, and the crash was shortly thereafter." More...

Gill Aircraft Batteries Are Available at Aircraft Spruce
Gill has become the OEM "original equipment battery" for Raytheon, Cessna, LearJet, Mooney, Piper, Ayres, Airtractor, Maule, Scheizer, and others in the aviation industry. Gill's "pink power" aircraft batteries offer a dramatic improvement in battery technology combined with the new international color for lead-acid aircraft batteries. Used by more aircraft manufacturers and the military than any other brand, Gill Batteries are furnished with Electrolyte (except overseas). For more information, call Aircraft Spruce at 1-877-4-SPRUCE, or visit online.
Flying Techback to top 

Garmin International told its dealers this week that the GNS480 GPS navigator will be discontinued due to declining sales, a development many owners had feared. Compared to Garmin's mega-selling GNS430 and 530 series navigators, the 480 sold in fractional numbers. But according to our sister magazine, Aviation Consumer, the product had a small but loyal following due to its unique flight management system-like capabilities, including a database with airways as a route option. More...

NASA and the Comparative Aircraft Flight Efficiency project (CAFE) have partnered to create a new $300,000 Personal Air Vehicle Challenge for 2008. It will be a "Pentaviathon" that aims to advance five vital general aviation technologies: noise reduction, fuel efficiency, speed, safety and ease of use. This year, the event introduces its first-ever "Green Prize," which organizers say will test true "Environmental Efficiency." The $50,000 Green Prize will reward the competing aircraft that scores the highest MPGe, or equivalent miles per gallon, a measure based upon fuel price, fuel density and payload, after flying a CAFE 400 race course. Other prizes will recognize technological achievements in the five main categories, with special awards for light sport aircraft. More...

Precise Flight's High-Intensity Discharge Landing & Taxi Light Systems ...
... Are the brightest illumination available. The stellar combination of increased light output, reduced power consumption, superior lamp life, and brilliant light quality are a few of the major benefits of HID lighting. The PreciseLite HID landing light, approved for Cessna and Piper models, is now approved for Beechcraft Bonanzas with cowl-mounted lights replacing the existing cowl lamp and available in 12 and 24 volts. Click here for additional information.
Airport Politicsback to top 

The future of a small municipal airport in Biddeford, Maine, will go on the ballot this year, so voters can decide if it should stay or go. The City Council is expected to decide this week whether a special election will be held, or if the question can wait until the general election in November. Opponents have argued that the airport costs the city money, and it would be better to sell the land to a developer for a few million dollars of profit. Mayor Joanne Twomey told the Sun Chronicle she will abide by the wishes of voters. "I am a big believer in democracy and the voice of the people," she said. More...

If you've flown commercial lately, you know that spam-in-a-can feeling, but some travelers are finding themselves with room to stretch out aboard aircraft with vacancy rates of up to 89 percent -- thanks to government subsidies that keep the routes profitable for regional airlines serving low-density areas. Lawmakers in Washington recently allocated $110 million to the Transportation Department to fund the program in 2008. The subsidies have been expanding in recent years, USA Today reported this week. The newspaper's analysis of where the money goes shows that much of it supports local trips to airport hubs that could easily be replaced with road trips of less than two hours. Aircraft with up to 24 seats often fly with just a few passengers, and depend on the subsidies to remain profitable. The USA Today story is comprehensive and detailed, but one thing it doesn't mention -- why not replace those big, empty turboprops with smaller, more efficient GA aircraft? More...

What Is the True Age of an Aircraft?
Take the Air Safety Foundation's new online course — Aging Aircraft — to learn what factors affect aircraft aging and how to mitigate their risks. You'll get invaluable tips on how to recognize the symptoms of aircraft aging. Includes complimentary Buying and Renting Guides and information on manufacturer issues. Take this no-cost, online course now.
News Briefsback to top 

Remos Aircraft, of Germany, has expanded its Light Sport Aircraft business in the U.S. with a new assembly plant in Arkansas. The company has been pushing an effort to entice away buyers of Cessna's SkyCatcher LSA, promising delivery within three months, much faster than the likely wait time for a new SkyCatcher order, plus a discount for Cessna buyers who switch. "The REMOS G-3 is the airplane that Cessna should have announced at AirVenture, and the G-3 is available today," said Michael Meirer, CEO of REMOS Aircraft. Meirer said the G-3 also offers a greater useful load -- 695 pounds vs. 490 for the SkyCatcher -- and it is built in Germany, "a country famous for its efficiency, modern technology and precision in manufacturing." Cessna, meanwhile, has been taking some flak over its decision to build its LSA in China. "Much of the feedback we heard was emotionally charged," Tom Aniello, marketing vice president, writes at the SkyCatcher Web site. Some comment areas at the site had to be taken down due to "non-conforming replies." Aniello added, "We have complete confidence that Shenyang Aircraft Company (SAC) will build the SkyCatcher to Cessna’s rigorous standards for safety, quality, reliability, value, and performance." More...

Despite growth in donations to the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) of Australia -- contributions have nearly doubled in the last five years -- the outfit is still not able to provide the services required by remote patients in need, the Adelaide Advertiser reported on Tuesday. The group receives some government support but must raise its own money to pay for the repair, maintenance and replacement of its entire fleet of 44 aircraft. "Last year the Service flew over 16 million kilometres [almost 10 million miles], therefore these aircraft need to be replaced on a systematic basis, to ensure that they are safe and economical to operate," says the RFDS. The cost of replacement aircraft has almost doubled since 1997, says the group, due both to the exchange rate of the Australian dollar and the rising cost of aircraft. RFDS spokesman John Tobin told the Advertiser that requests for service also have been rising, from not only rural residents but urban Australians who are traveling in remote regions and in need of medical care. More...

The Finer Points Delivers Weekly Training Tips

"Great, love it! The music is a great addition and adds a bit of that sense of thrill and awe we all feel flying (or should feel), reminding us why we really love doing this. I have become especially appreciative of the professional, high-quality approach to both the format of the podcast and the approach to safe, fun flying at TFP."

Visit TheFinerPoints.net.
News Briefsback to top 

Some AVweb readers may remember the effort that went into re-creating the first flight of the Wright Brothers for the 100th anniversary in 2003 -- despite earnest efforts and the assembly of a crack flight-test and construction team, the project met mixed success at best. But that's not discouraging Craig Russell, a former cargo jet pilot living in Alabama, who has latched on to the even more daunting mission of re-creating astronaut John Glenn's historic 1962 orbit around the Earth, 50 years later, on Feb. 20, 2012. So far Russell has been shopping the idea around, looking for supporters. Most have been encouraging but few have written checks. Russell estimates it would cost at least $45 million to buy a new rocket and create a reproduction of Glenn's Mercury space capsule, complete with parachute for a splash-down landing, but it would be well spent. "You have to believe," he told the Huntsville Times. "People either get it or they don't." If you think you get it, you can visit Russell's Web site for more info. More...

FAA awarded $2 million to ERAU for "Airport of the Future" ...
An Australian's bottles of vintage wine were destroyed by airport security ...
A pilot and two technicians died when a search-and-rescue helicopter crashed ...
AOPA videos aim to inspire new pilot starts via YouTube. More...

Leave the Paper Trail Behind ...
... Subscribe to AircraftLogs, a complete record-keeping solution for aviation. Whether you operate a single plane or a corporate fleet, AircraftLogs' digital services help you manage your operation easily and efficiently while keeping your records safe. Manage your data with AircraftLogs' FAA-compliant technology that streamlines flight operations, maintenance documentation, and financial information.

Subscribe. Log in. Click. Fly. For complete details, call (888) 359-5647, or go online.
New on AVwebback to top 

As 2008 gets off to a cold start in many countries across Europe, Liz Moscrop reports on what's going on around the region. More...

Over 16,000 Happy GAMIjectors® Customers Can't Be Wrong!
GAMIjectors® have given these aircraft owners reduced peak cylinder head temperatures, reduced fuel consumption, and smoother engine operation. GAMIjectors® alter the fuel/air ratio in each cylinder so that each cylinder operates with a much more uniform fuel/air ratio than occurs with any other factory set of injectors. To speak to a GAMI engineer, call (888) FLY-GAMI, or go online for complete engineering details.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to 1st Class Air at KSPI in Springfield, Illinois.

With storms criss-crossing the U.S. for the last few weeks, many of our most glowing recommendations have come from pilots who found themselves trapped in less-than-ideal conditions far from home. AVweb reader Scott Bartley was in just such a position, stopping at Springfield because of bad weather a little further north. When weather put the kibosh on his flight, the team at 1st Class air checked in Scott's crew car and got him a rental, and when he need to get back to the plane a day early (just after Thanksgiving!), 1st Class had it ready for the air. "Everything went smoothly despite my ever-changing plans," writes Scott. "This FBO will remain on my list of planned stops for all trips north."

Keep those nominations coming. For complete contest rules, click here.

AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBOs in the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here next Monday!


StickyCharts — No Tape or Thumbtacks Required
Your favorite FAA charts beautifully printed on removable adhesive backing. Easily map your route with dry-erase markers. Up to 4 feet tall, StickyCharts are delivered in a sturdy tube. Go online to order at StickyCharts.com.
Tell Us What You Thinkback to top 

Running with last week's theme (but switching gears a bit), we'd like to ask our readers to cast their predictions for the story that will shape 2008. What do you think will be the biggest aviation story of the coming year? (If your nominee isn't listed, don't worry:  We've set up a (new) temporary address at 2008@avweb.com where you can tell us your contenders.) Plus: What did AVweb readers pick as the top story of 2007? More...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. What have you heard? More...

Fly Somewhere! Use AVweb's Calendar of Events
The skies are blue; you and your plane are ready. Check out AVweb's Calendar of Events for an event near you.

If you have an event you want folks to know about, post it at no cost on AVweb's Calendar of Events.
Reader-Submitted Photosback to top 

Even with a bellyful of holiday ham, AVweb readers know how to start off a new year in style! Join us as we pore over the the best photos submitted by our readers in the last week of 2007. Robert (Bob) Burns of Mauckport, Indiana kicks off 2008 with the highly-recognizable P-51 Big Beautiful Doll. More...

More AVweb for Your Inboxback to top 

HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's NO-COST weekly business aviation newsletter, AVwebBiz? Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash focuses on the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines in the business aviation industry. Business AVflash is a must read. Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/. More...

Names Behind the Newsback to top 


AVwebFlash is a weekly summary of the latest news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

The AVwebFlash team is:

Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

Click here to send a letter to the editor. (Please let us know if your letter is not intended for publication.)

Comments or questions about the news should be sent here.

Have a product or service to advertise on AVweb? A question on marketing? Send it to AVweb's sales team.

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