|Volume 9, Number 29a||July 14,
This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by
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The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded, Illustrated News Coverage At
AIRVENTURE: NEW COMPANIES, NEW PRODUCTS...
EAA AirVenture is just around
the corner and because many companies gear their product development and
PR campaigns to the week at Oshkosh, particularly this year in the
centennial of flight, you will soon be awash in new products to drool
over and/or lust for. AVweb is already aware of some new weather
products, new aircraft and new support services for all facets of flight
(including those you spend on the ground). Whether you're going to the
show (see AVweb's Survival
Guide) or not (see our coverage), the AVweb team will be at
AirVenture in force, to find what's best of what's new. Among the new
Aircraft, the U.S. sales and marketing arm of the German aircraft
manufacturer Extra Flugzeugbau, will spotlight their new
business/touring aircraft with designer, founder of the German-based
company, and aerobatics icon Walter Extra on hand. More...
Aircraft is no stranger to AirVenture, but the latest twist in its
marketing efforts might raise an eyebrow or two. The Australian-based
firm is pitching its big, powerful, bush-friendly single as a
"pilot-optional" aircraft for military use. With a pilot, the Explorer
is a 10- to 16-passenger workhorse that can get in and out of smaller
airfields. Take the crew out of the equation and the company says it's
an unmanned aerial vehicle that can fly as high as FL400 and accomplish
a myriad of missions. While AirVenture is a showcase for all types of
aviation, its roots are with homebuilts and kit plane manufacturers,
like the New Glasair, which
continues to innovate, announcing a super-fast-build option. According
to the company, the pre-built components shave a total of 750 hours from
the build time. More...
HAND, IN-COCKPIT WEATHER
You won't actually have to attend the show to see some of the latest
products and services being offered there (but it's a lot more fun). WSI, which provides
pilots "a continuous stream of aviation weather information to your
portable or panel-mounted display," will soon be setting up a temporary
mini-site within its main Web site to show off its capabilities and
provide extensive weather data for those traveling to the Oshkosh area.
That will include satellite pictures, radar imagery, and a three-day
temperature and sky forecast as well as a textual TAF. The mini-site
will be up during the event and for a few days prior and afterward.
Another company, TurboWx, will put
similar information on your appropriately enabled cellphone.
Is the latest
Inspector General report slamming the FAA a harbinger of things to
come in the soon-to-be-created Light Sport
Aircraft (LSA) category? On Thursday the Transportation Department's
Inspector General criticized lack of oversight by the FAA on some
maintenance facilities. It singled out the difficulties the FAA has with
making sure work done in foreign countries is up to U.S. standards.
That's been one of the main concerns of U.S.
manufacturers who may face an influx of less-expensive imported
aircraft when LSA becomes a reality. Oversight of foreign manufacturers
is identified as a priority in the LSA rulemaking process but for some
the FAA's record on overseeing offshore maintenance of U.S. airliners,
as raised in the Inspector General's report, may suggest cause for
STATIONS FACE NEW RULES
Maintenance concerns were raised during the investigation into the crash of an
Air Midwest Beech 1900 in Charlotte last January and the Inspector
General is warning more safety problems could arise if the FAA doesn't
tighten inspections of contract maintenance facilities. Meanwhile, the
National Air Transportation
Association (NATA) is concerned that the FAA's plans to Oct. 6
rules for repair stations and quality-control manuals does not
provide shops opportunity to study the rules and comment. NATA Vice
President Jeb Burnside is also concerned about a new policy that would
require component repair be treated as outsourced maintenance. He said
the rule would increase paperwork and costs without improving safety.
"When a repair station simply sends out a part for repair or overhaul by
an FAA-certificated authority, there is no rational reason why that
transaction needs to be labeled as contract maintenance," said Burnside,
"This policy on contract maintenance clearly places an untenable
financial burden on small businesses at a time when they can ill afford
NEW PRODUCTS AND
SAVINGS AT AVIONICS WEST Avionics West has two new products: the
Vertex Standard VXA-150 and VXA-210 Deluxe model portable transceivers.
The new Deluxe series includes a powerful high capacity Ni-MH battery
with two and a half times more capacity that their competitor, and comes
with a CN-3 Antenna adapter. But wait, it gets better! There's a $25
factory REBATE coupon in the box for a limited time! Avionics West also
has factory REBATES up to $75 on selected ICOM products. Save BIG on a
portable transceivers at Avionics West. For more too-low-to-advertise
prices, call 805 934-9777, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or
go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avionics
CHICAGO ALDERMAN FIGHTS FOR MEIGS
In what looks like a case of too little, too late, a lone Chicago
Alderman (one of 50) has spoken in support of reopening Meigs Field. Ald. Joe Moore
(D-49th Ward) stood up at last Wednesday's full meeting of council to
call for public hearings into alleged safety problems caused by the
March 31 closure of Meigs and for consideration of reopening the
waterfront airport. At an earlier news conference, Moore said there have
been increased runway incursions at O'Hare and allegations of overwork
by air traffic controllers at Midway since Meigs was closed by Mayor Richard Daley,
who ordered large X's excavated in the runway. More...
ENTERS GA FUEL-CELL RACE?
Boeing has entered the race to put a fuel-cell-powered aircraft in the
air. Boeing's research center in Madrid, Spain, will launch the process,
to equip a Diamond Katana
Xtreme motor glider with the plumbing, controls and electric motor
needed to make it fly on a fuel cell. The plan is to fly the aircraft by
late 2004 or early 2005. Most of the corporate partners in the project
are European, but Advanced Technology Products, of Worcester, Mass.,
which has been making slow progress on their own fuel-cell aircraft
project, is also involved. That project in June won a $400,000 NASA
grant "to develop and build the Fuel Cell System for the project." It's
not clear if that project will be continued, abandoned or absorbed in
the well-heeled Boeing project, which hopes in the near term to produce
a fuel-cell powered APU. The investigation continues into the
crash of the Helios Prototype, the unmanned aerial vehicle that was
preparing to test a fuel-cell propulsion system. More...
Looking for big fun with a small price tag? Theres nothing
better than the Symphony 160, the two-place, high wing, single engine
aircraft from OMF. This well-equipped aircraft can take you and a
passenger, plus full fuel and baggage, wherever you want to go, and make
getting there part of the fun. It has the sporty good looks, comfort,
safety and German engineering that will make possible the lifestyle you
want. The Symphony 160 makes flying fun again. To discover more about
the fully-loaded Symphony 160, call 1-866-OMF-1600 or visit http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/omf
POLICIES RESULT FROM FLIGHT FRACAS
A top FAA official has been "counseled" by Administrator Marion Blakey
and new flight information policies are being drafted after the agency
got caught in a Texas-sized political scramble in May. The Department of
Transportation's Inspector General's office released findings
of the FAA's involvement in the fracas, which, as we
reported in June, at one point had the full weight of the Department
of Homeland Security's interdiction apparatus looking for a planeload of
hooky-playing Texas state politicians. "The FAA lacks clear internal
guidance for the processing of requests for FAA aircraft/flight
information received from law enforcement and other government
entities," said the report, triggered
by Sen. Joe Lieberman, and authored by Inspector
General Ken Mead. More...
GA pilots in the Los Angeles area are getting plenty of advanced notice
of an FAA Christmas present to them. For whatever reason, the FAA has
chosen Dec. 25, 2003, to implement the
realignment of a VFR corridor through the busy LAX area. The new
alignment changes the northern boundary of the Los Angeles Special
Flight Rules Area and it also clarifies the text of the flight
regulations within the SFAR to ensure aircraft maintain the correct
fixed altitude while using the route.
Owners of certain Lycoming engines will have to replace the rotary fuel
pumps on them sooner rather than later. An earlier AD requiring torque
check inspections of the pump relief valve attaching screws on certain
Cran/Lear Romec "AN" rotary fuel pumps has been superseded by a
new AD that requires the inspection plus the replacement of the pump
with one of an improved design. The older style could leak.
TFR NIGHTMARES SOUGHT
AOPA has developed an
online form to collect real-life horror stories of pilots trying to
operate within the security-related flight restrictions that have become
a fact of life since 9/11. AOPA wants to use the stories as ammunition
in its attempt to have the whole system of security-related regulations
reviewed. AOPA is particularly interested in pilot experiences in the Baltimore-Washington
Air Defense Identification Zone and the presidential-movement TFRs
that pop up wherever Air Force One lands. "We will take these very real
operational stories to the decision makers. We want them to feel our
pain and respond," said President Phil Boyer. More...
WHAT IT MEANS TO YOU
told you Thursday, ILS-like accuracy could be coming to an airport
near you, thanks to the FAA's new Wide Area Augmentation System. The
WAAS signal, which improves GPS receiver accuracy, was switched on and
now properly equipped aircraft can pinpoint their position to within a
few meters. But the major impact will be in the creation of ILS-like
approaches to hundreds of airports not yet served by the costly (to buy
and maintain) ground-based ILS equipment. AOPA President Phil Boyer said
the organization has been behind the over-budget, years-late system from
its inception. FAA Administrator Marion Blakey apologized for the delays
but said it was worth the wait. "The general aviation community will be
the first to benefit from this system," she said. More...
Senate committee approved funding for Airport Watch
Program reporting line...
National Aviation Hall of
Fame honorees celebrate the centennial July 19...
Alabama wildlife officials check eagles with a Skylane...
Contest determines Concorde's last passengers. More...
After holding short of runway 4, with no traffic in sight and the
vice-president of the company riding shotgun...
Pilot: Cessna 123, still holding short.
Tower: Cessna 123, Hold your taters.
Pilot: Taters held, over.
Tower: Cessna 123, release taters, [chuckle] Runway 33, position and
The VP was impressed and the pilot is now known company-wide as "Tater".
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New Articles and Features on AVweb
The Pilot's Lounge #63: It Takes A Village To Raise An
AVweb's Rick Durden has gotten used to stories about airports losing
money, support, and pilots. So when he heard about a place where the
airport was increasing the support from the citizens, he had to find out
Risk Management For Pilots
Why does the risk of accidents increase in the few hundred flight hours
after primary flight training? Are we still not properly teaching
students how to manage risk as they build experience in a variety of
flight situations? AVweb presents some suggestions to get you started.
Reader feedback on AVweb's news coverage and feature
Reader mail this week about plane crazy days of summer, the Avjet
settlement and more.
Sponsor News and Special Offers
FREE access to AVweb and AVflash is provided by the
support of our fine sponsors. We appreciate your patronage.
HOW SENSITIVE IS
"YOUR" CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTOR? Low levels of carbon monoxide
can be hazardous in aircraft since the effects of CO and hypoxia are
cumulative. By the time a chemical spot or hardware store CO detectors
alerts, you could have a life-threatening exhaust leak. The CO Experts
2002 from Aeromedix warns of CO levels as low as 5 parts per million! On
sale for $99.95. See all Aeromedix's products at AirVenture booth
3002-03. Be safe and order your CO detector today by calling 888
362-7123 and mention this AVflash, or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/aeromedi
FOR JUST $9.95 A MONTH! Sign up now for the AVweb Edition of
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The AVweb Edition of Flight Explorer costs just $9.95 a month, subscribe
BEAUTIFUL...PILOT GETAWAYS INSPIRES YOU TO GO THERE The tiny
resort of Punta San Francisquito in Baja, Mexico is just one of the
destinations you will find in the Summer issue. Stop by AirVenture tent
34 to pick up your FREE issue and meet the staff. Subscribe to Pilot
Getaways at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/getaways
GRADUATIONS, BIRTHDAYS, FIRST SOLO, OR TO SAY "I LOVE YOU" are
all at Port-to-Port Jewelry. From 14k gold, sterling silver and costume,
you'll find the right gift of airplanes, balloons, gliders, and more at
Port-to-Port's AirVenture booth 2112, or online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/port
HOWARD FRIED'S FINAL
"EYE OF EXPERIENCE" SERIES AT SPECIAL PRE-PUB PRICE ends on
Thursday, July 17. To take advantage of the pre-publication price of
$21.95, regular $24.95, on the last of the "Eye of Experience" series go
GARRISON FINALLY FLYS HIS MELMOTH 2! In Flying's August issue
Peter Garrison flys his Melmoth 2 after 21 year of construction; a pilot
report on the Robinson Raven II and Cayenne; A new twist on shared
ownership with a Cirrus SR22; and more. Stop by Flying magazine's
AirVenture booth 4151 and BMC 201 for your FREE copy, and for special
online rates go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/flying
MAKE OREGON AERO
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noticeable difference walking around Oshkosh (and elsewhere!) with a
pair of Oregon Aero SoftSole Inserts. These inserts eliminate foot
pain and relieve fatigue. Thousands of U.S. military personnel are using
them. Oregon Aero has men and womens sizes for walking, running,
standing, and for those with foot injuries or other medical conditions.
Stop by AirVenture booth 3037-40 to purchase these inserts and other
products that eliminate pain, reduce noise and improve impact
protection. Check out all of Oregon Aeros products online athttp://www.avweb.com/sponsors/oregon
SAFETY AUGUST ISSUE HIGHLIGHTS: "Convective Living", technology
make most trips a safe go; "Flight Review & You", get out what you put
in; "Shut the Prop Up", techniques for keeping the peace; "Fighting
Corrosion"; "Evasive Action", easing the potential for mid-air
collisions; plus, accident reports, service difficulties and real-life
experiences in the air. Stay informed and up-to-date with your
subscription to Aviation Safety.http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/belvoir/avsaf/
PICK UP ROD
MACHADO AT AIRVENTURE. NO, NOT THE REAL PERSON BUT ROD'S videos
and books! These are the next best thing to having Rod Machado stand in
your living room making you learn while you laugh. Go by AirVenture
booth 2072-73, or go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/machado
& SPACE MAGAZINE IS A HISTORICAL KEEPER! August/September issue
highlights: The Hmong Air Force, trained by the CIA they fought like
tigers to protect their homeland; Hong Kong's Kai-Tak airport has
closed, can the flying club keep the legends alive?; Space Garden; State
Secret: The Trade War; Of Tri-motors and Travel Airs; and much more to
peak your interest and increase your knowledge. Order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/smithson
NEW PRODUCTS FROM
SACRAMENTO SKYRANCH IN TIME FOR LOTS OF SUMMER FLYING! You know
Sacramento Skyranch for their great maintenance books, now find two new
products: The GATS JAR, the only fuel analysis tester to separate
non-petroleum contaminants and thereby purifying water and debris from
contaminated avgas and jet fuel allowing extracted fuel to be put back
into the aircraft and not on the ground. REJEX, a thin-film polymer
coating that reduces adhesion of bugs, oil, grime and more to any
aircraft surface and lasts for months. See these and other fine products
HUMAN FACTORS IN
AVIATION ACCIDENTS AUDIOTAPES DISCUSSES THE HUMAN SIDE of why
accidents happen and what can be done to prevent them. The tape
discusses in-flight decision making, error chains, personal limits,
personality traits, and other elements than can lead to disaster. Brian
Jacobson, author of Flying On The Gages, will give you something to
think about. Order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/odyssey
LAUNCHES ONTO THE INTERNET WITH EXCITING WEB SITES geared to
grow and unite the general aviation and flight-training industry. You'll
find a service for flight-training providers, or those who want a
personal or business site. Pilot Journey brings you eye-catching,
low-cost Web site hosting with NAFI member discounts with success-driven
marketing and educational tools at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/pjhosting
THOSE WHO BRING YOU FREE AVFLASHES! Stop by during AirVenture
and tell AVweb sponsors how much you appreciate their support of your
FREE AVflash issues. AVweb will be in booth 4144-45. For a list you can
print out and take with you go to http://www.avweb.com/shopping/sponsors.html
We Welcome Your Feedback!
AVflash is a twice-weekly summary of the latest aviation news,
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