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Volume 14, Number 14a
March 31, 2008
Discover the Thrill
You are here when you discover that the thrill of hanging 10 has nothing on hanging around Cloud 9. In a brand-new Cessna Skyhawk, you too will discover life in a brand-new way, whether you're learning to fly or fulfilling the lifelong dream of owning a new Cessna. Call 1 (316) 517-6056, or visit CessnaYouAreHere.com.

» Be there with Cessna Single-Engine at booths SNF-001-005 at Sun 'n Fun
AVweb Exclusiveback to top 

The FAA says it will likely investigate the complaints of a couple of pilots who say they were intercepted and shadowed, at close range, by an F-16 over Arizona earlier this month. Pilatus PC-12 pilot Patrick McCall and Beech Premier pilot Scott Laromee have both filed near-collision reports with the agency after they say they were aggressively pursued by an F-16 on March 21 in the Gladden Military Operations Area, a training area used by pilots from Luke Air Force Base near Phoenix. The area is open for use by civilian aircraft. In a podcast interview with AVweb, McCall said that when his TCAS activated about 10 a.m. that day while he was cruising at 16,500 (VFR with flight following) he ended up having to dive his aircraft as the target kept closing on him. The target followed him in the dive and when McCall leveled at about 14,000 feet, he was amazed by the view from his side window. “I then looked to my left side of the aircraft and saw an F16 aircraft off of my left wing,” he said in a written report sent to the FAA. “The F16 was no more than 20 feet off of my left wing.” AVweb contacted the media relations department of Luke Air Force Base on Friday and provided copies of both McCall’s and Laromee’s complaints but military officials did not respond to our request for comment by our deadline on Sunday. More...

JA Air Center, Your Garmin GPSMap 496 Source, Is Looking to Purchase Used GPS Units, Avionics, and Aircraft
Call (800) 323-5966 for current value, with no purchase required. JA Air Center is your source for Garmin GPS and Avionics, including the popular GPSMap 496 with XM Weather, Terrain, AOPA Airport Guide, Taxiway Database, and built-in StreetPilot Auto GPS.

JA Air Center [Dupage Airport (KDPA) in West Chicago, IL] provides the finest avionics installations, turbine/piston maintenance, avionics/instrument service, mail order, and aircraft sales. Call (800) 323-5966, or click for more information.
Right Seat into Spaceback to top 

XCOR last week announced its "Lynx" two-place transport that will be designed for to speeds near Mach 2, reached during ascent to 200,000 feet and 30 minutes aloft. Former Space Shuttle commander and current XCOR test pilot, Rick Searfoss, is helping promote the aircraft as "the greatest ride on earth." The vehicle will be powered by liquid-fueled engines that "are fully reusable, burn cleanly, and release fewer particulates than solid fuel or hybrid rocket motors," according to XCOR CEO Jeff Greason. Lynx aims to treat passengers more like co-pilots than cargo -- meaning they will ride up front, not in back, and XCOR hopes to have a fully operable Lynx by 2010. More...

Fly With Bose® Aviation Headset X™
Enjoy an unmatched combination of full-spectrum noise reduction, clear audio, and comfortable fit. Voted the #1 headset for the seventh consecutive year in Professional Pilot's 2007 Headset Preference Survey. Also rated "Best ANR Headset: The Aviation Consumer Product of the Year" by Aviation Consumer. Learn more and order.

Quotes reprinted with permission: Professional Pilot, 2007 Headset Preference Survey, 12/07; Aviation Consumer, 8/07.

» Try out the Headset X™ and other Bose Corporation products at booth SNF-009 at Sun 'n Fun
Safety in the Skiesback to top 

The Airline Pilot Security Alliance (APSA) Thursday released a statement saying that TSA weapons-handling rules are to blame for the accidental discharge of a pilot's firearm while in the cockpit of a flying US Airways jet last weekend. The APSA pointed specifically to the TSA's requirement for pilots to remove the guns from their person, lock them and carry them "off-body" when off the flight deck. The group quotes an unidentified federal flight deck officer who said the pilot involved was preparing for landing and was trying to remove his gun and secure it when "the padlock depressed the trigger." Personal responsibility aside, the rules may force some pilots to handle their guns ten times each day and that much gun play is "a recipe for disaster," according to David Mackett, president of the APSA. APSA's press release concluded with one pilot's opinion that Congress should take a look at how the program is operated, and the suggestion that pilots should follow the same procedures applied to federal air marshals. More...

American Airlines and Delta Air Lines combined to cancel roughly 400 flights (Delta was responsible for about two-thirds of that total) as the FAA's push to check maintenance records for compliance continues. American is rechecking 300 of its MD-80s and Delta is checking about 117 MD-88s. It seems the airlines are reacting to a specific airworthiness directive issued in September of 2006 that requires compliance by March of 2008. The AD calls for the aircraft to be checked for evidence of arcing on power cables of the auxiliary hydraulic pump and for action to be taken to prevent shorted wires or arcing and thereby reduce the potential for creation of an ignition source adjacent to the aircraft's fuel tanks. The affected aircraft make up about 46 percent of American's fleet and 20 percent of Delta's. Following on the heels of the FAA's $10.2 million fine against Southwest Airlines, the airlines may be moving to take action before being acted upon. More...

Cirrus Announces New Standard Maintenance Program
A planemaker fond of comparing its planes to high-end luxury automobiles just brought those two seemingly disparate markets a little closer. Cirrus Design has announced the launch of Cirrus Maintenance, a new "standard with purchase" benefit designed to help reduce the cost of scheduled and unscheduled maintenance. For more information, click here.

» Experience the fun of flying with Cirrus Design at booths MD-032C and MD-033B at Sun 'n Fun
Two Stories About Temperaturesback to top 

Diamond's 170-knot twin turbo-diesel DA42 Thursday earned FAA known ice certification, allowing the 12-gallon-per-hour aircraft to more completely utilize its 1,100-nm range. Owners currently operating TKS-equipped DA42s must comply with Diamond Service Bulletin OSB-42-015, Revision 3 or later to get known ice approval. Diamond says it will cover parts and labor (the aircraft will get new placards, updated AFM sections and a TKS system test) for compliance. Diamond's four-seat DA42 Twin Star flies with FADEC-controlled engines and a G1000 glass cockpit. Heike Larson, vice president of sales and marketing at Diamond Aircraft, put it this way: "The DA42 is an ideal cross-country traveling plane for pilots who want the ability to go direct, over rugged terrain or open water, and who need to be able to fly when CAVU is nowhere to be found, and when the mercury drops below freezing." Now, says Larson, DA42 pilots "have even more options." More...

By invitation only, a Select Committee Hearing for the House will examine aviation's impact on global warming Wednesday, April 2, by examining the contribution to greenhouse gases caused by aircraft. Presently, aviation emissions "generate 12 percent of U.S. transportation carbon dioxide emissions and three percent of the Unites States' total carbon dioxide emissions," according to a government release announcing the hearing. The FAA estimates that U.S. demand for passenger and cargo aviation will at least double by 2025. Participants in the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming hearing include James May, president and CEO, Air Transport Association; Dan Elwell, FAA assistant administrator for aviation policy, planning, and environment; and Bob Meyers, principal deputy assistant administrator for the office of air and radiation for the environmental protection agency (EPA). No agenda was available at the time of this writing, but the hearing's title may offer clues: "From the Wright Brothers to the Right Solutions: Curbing Soaring Aviation Emissions." More...

Pilot Insurance Center (PIC) Offers Quick Decision Term Life Insurance
PIC is offering Quick Decision Term product. The application, approval, and delivery processes are streamlined, allowing decisions in a few minutes or days versus weeks or months with traditional insurers. In most cases: No medical examinations, no testing, and no waiting for results. Face amounts up to $300K, available to most pilots. Ask about it today. Call PIC today at 1 (800) 380-8376, or visit PIC online.
News Briefsback to top 

Canada’s Transportation Safety Board says in a report hot air balloons that carry passengers for hire should have safety standards equal to those required for other types of aircraft that fly commercially. “While balloons can carry up to 12 fare-paying passengers, they are not regulated at a level comparable to that of other commercial aircraft operators,” the report said. “The TSB recommends [that the] Department of Transport ensure that passenger-carrying commercial balloon operations provide a level of safety equivalent to that established for other aircraft of equal passenger-carrying capacity.” The board made its recommendation after completing an investigation into a balloon accident in Winnipeg, Manitoba, last August in which the pilot and two passengers were severely burned and other passengers were less seriously injured in a landing accident. More...

KLM is refuting a story, carried by news outlets all over the world, including AVweb, last week that said one of the airline’s crews refused to land at a new airport in Hyderabad, India, because they weren’t familiar with it. According to the airline, however, the flight was diverted because weather was below minimums. The MD-11 and its 233 passengers ended up in Mumbai and returned to Hyderabad the next day. “KLM was fully aware of the new airport. Flight 873 departed prepared for the new airport Shamshabad at Hyderabad,” KLM spokesperson Marisca Kensenhuis told AVweb in an e-mail. “In India the weather was below the published limits therefore the crew decided to go to an alternate airport. The passengers and crew stayed in hotels in Mumbai and left the next day for Shamshabad.” Although the newspaper that initiated the report pulled the story from its Web site, it did not publish a correction and KLM has AVweb reader Werner Fischbach’s curious nature to thank for restoring its reputation. More...

Gyro failure preceded in-flight breakup that killed five in Canada ...
NATCA holds an online safety forum and posts the online schedule for a full list of sessions ...
Citation hits two houses, five dead ...
Build A Plane needs more donated airplanes. More...

Sensenich: Right on the Nose ... Again!
For more than 75 years, Sensenich has been the industry's fixed-pitch prop leader. No surprise Sensenich leads the way again with new composite propellers for light sport and homebuilt aircraft. Proven on 5,000 airboats over the last eight years, plus Rotax- and Jabiru-powered planes, the new lightweight, precision composite props are now available for Continental- and Lycoming-powered planes. Call (717) 569-0435, or click here to learn more.

» Find the right Sensenich Propeller for your aircraft at booths A-030-031 at Sun 'n Fun
New on AVwebback to top 

What could be easier than taxiing an airplane? Maybe not so easy, as the accident record shows. AVweb's Thomas P. Turner has some taxi tips. More...

This month, AVweb's survey of the latest products and services for pilots, mechanics and aircraft owners brings you glass-cockpit instrument covers, dosimetry reporting services, skis for Huskys and more. More...

Nervous About Your Next Medical Exam?
AOPA is the only General Aviation association with a dedicated staff of medical certification specialists who can answer your most basic medical questions or help you through a complicated special issuance. And AOPA's web site has an extensive medical certification section to help plan your next medical renewal. Start with TurboMedical, AOPA's interactive medical application planner, and if you're concerned about medications, check out the comprehensive listing of prescription and non-prescription drugs that the FAA allows. Call AOPA's Pilot Information Center at 1 (800) USA-AOPA, or visit online.

» Ask about AOPA's Medical Services under the yellow tent (booth SNF-008) at Sun 'n Fun
Reader Voicesback to top 

AVMAIL: MAR. 31, 2008
Reader mail this week about beer gardens, airlines' blame toward GA and more. More...

Our sister publication, Aviation Consumer, is conducting a survey on aircraft engine cylinder products. If you've done an overhaul during the past several years, the magazine's editors would like to hear from you on how the cylinders have performed. Just click on this link to take the survey.

The results will appear in a future issue of Aviation Consumer. For subscription information, click here. More...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 200,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. What have you heard? More...

Envision® Integrated Flight Deck Now Available for Retrofit Installation in Cessna 400-Series Aircraft!
Avidyne's Envision® Integrated Flight Deck modernizes the popular Cessna 400-Series piston-engine twins with state-of-the-art situational awareness and safety systems and the industry's easiest-to-use integrated flight deck. Purchase and take delivery of an Envision® System (EXP5000 PFD and an EX5000 MFD) and get an MLB700 at no charge! This $5,495 value provides you with WSI Datalink Weather and Sirius® Digital Audio! Offer valid from 1/15/08 to 5/15/08. Click here for more info.

Sign up to be an Avidyne Insider.

» See Avidyne technologies in action at booths D-069-070 and N-028 at Sun 'n Fun
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

Two pilots who were transiting a military operating area near Luke Air Force Base last week say they got the fright of their lives from an F-16 pilot who they say forced them to take evasive maneuvers to avoid what they thought was an imminent collision. AVweb's Russ Niles spoke with Pilatus PC-12 pilot Patrick McCall about the close encounter and what the fallout from the incident might be. More...

The Lockheed U-2 has been in service for over 50 years. It has been at the center of some of the most tense moments in America's history. AVweb's Glenn Pew takes you inside the cockpit on a guided tour with an active U-2 pilot. (Click through to watch.) More...

We'd already picked out a really educational and visually stimulating movie clip as today's "Video of the Week" — but then we remembered that the very same submitter, AVweb reader Michael King, had sent us an equally educational (but much more viscerally thrilling) video earlier in the week. The video was originally posted as part of an ongoing 9/11 conspiracy discussion, but it's well worth a watch on its own merits, demonstrating what happens when an F-4 jet crashes into the concrete wall of a nuclear power plant. (Click through to watch.) More...

Motion Sickness Solution for You and Your Passengers
The Relief Band Explorer offers the most effective and predictable relief available for nausea and vomiting associated with motion sickness. Your passengers will never feel the ill effects of motion sickness in your plane again! This FDA-cleared wristwatch-like device is available exclusively at Aeromedix.com. It's the best $129.95 purchase you will ever make. Call Aeromedix at (888) 362-7123, or go online to purchase.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


Today, AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Landmark Aviation at KORF in Norfolk, Virginia, which was recommended to us by AVweb readers David & Roberta McKenna, who write:

The line staff and front counter girls were outstanding, giving [us] a truly excellent experience. We were given the AOPA 25¢ fuel discount, a reservation at Windmark Hotel for $68(not a misprint!), their shuttle to and from the FBO, and a restaurant recommendation. Outstanding service!

Are you running out of good FBOs to tell us about? Nominations have dropped off a bit, so we hope you'll keep telling us about great FBOs around the country.

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!


So You Think You Are a Safe Pilot!
Aviation Safety magazine will keep your decision-making skills sharp with interesting and information-packed articles. You may find lots you didn't know! Order your subscription online for savings from the regular rate.
The Lighter Side of Flightback to top 

Overheard in IFR 
Magazine's 'On the Air' Section
Overheard in IFR Magazine's "On the Air"

I was doing practice approaches when I heard approach control contact another aircraft on a similar mission:

"N1234, what are your intentions after this approach?"

"I'll be missed approach, and I'd like vectors to the ILS 36."

"Missed approach instructions: Climb to 2800 and direct to the VOR."

[... sometime later ...]

"Approach, N1234 is missed approach direct to the VOR. Request vectors for the ILS 36."

"Turn right to 1-1-0 degrees, vector for the ILS. Maintain 2800 feet. I'm showing you at 3400 feet."

"Descending to 2800. I'm sorry. I'm having a discussion with the auto-pilot as to which of us is actually pilot-in-command."

John Steiner
via e-mail


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.

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