AVwebFlash Complete Issue: Volume 14, Number 31b

July 29, 2008

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
Zulu's Gone Wild!
People are coming to the booth with the reviews in their hands, wanting to see the difference for themselves. No doubt about it — for comfort, quiet, sound quality, it's Zulu! If you're here, come on by for a Zulu demo. And if you couldn't make it this year and you want to see the reviews, go to Lightspeed online.

» Try Lightspeed's Zulu and compare it to other premium brands
at booths 2019-2020 & 2023 at EAA AirVenture
Top News: Eclipse Aviation in the Spotlight back to top 

New Eclipse CEO Addressing Refund Concerns

Acting Eclipse CEO Roel Pieper says the company is working out the details of honoring an unknown number of $150,000 deposits made by an unknown number of position holders who balked at the latest ($500,000) price increase of the Eclipse 500. Pieper said he expects announcements to be made in "a few days" concerning alleged delays in the processing of refunds. The deposit refund issue has dominated discussion on blog and forum sites recently. Two position holders AVweb spoke with say there is real concern among those who have requested refunds and they're hopeful a resolution is coming as quickly as Pieper said there will be. "I have to admit that I am a little nervous," said Doug Cayne, who requested his refund about two weeks ago. Eclipse has said the requests will be processed within 30 days. Others have been waiting longer, he said.

Meanwhile, news of the abrupt departure of founder and former CEO Vern Raburn rippled through the show with most industry people we talked with puzzled over the timing and process of his removal (at Oshkosh, where companies normally try to portray themselves in the best possible light.) In a letter to Eclipse owners, Raburn said his unanticipated resignation as CEO was a condition of the release of a new round of financing by a group of investors . "I have not had any choice but to accept the terms of an agreement that provides Eclipse the first funds in a new round of financing that will take the company to a cash flow positive position," he said. Raburn himself wasted no time in distancing himself from the buzz he created. He told AVweb he intended to leave Monday for a fishing trip in Idaho with friends.

AV8OR™ Horizon 3D
AV8OR Horizon 3D is the first portable — and affordable — cockpit information system with 3-D synthetic vision. Its touch-screen, multi-function display (MFD) delivers a realistic cockpit-like view, no matter what the conditions beyond the aircraft window, through dynamic, synthetic 3-D imagery. On the ground, use it as a Tablet PC to plan your route, download weather, save your flight plan, generate checklists and more. For more information, go online.

» Register to win a Bendix/King AV8OR by Honeywell at booths 2081-2086 at EAA AirVenture
Checking in with the Plane You Can Drive back to top 

Terrafugia Proof-of-Concept To Fly Soon, Company Says

Terrafugia CEO Carl Dietrich says his Transition flying car -- which he prefers to call a "roadable aircraft" -- will fly by the end of this year, and customer deliveries will start by the end of 2009. Dietrich brought his proof-of-concept prototype to EAA AirVenture this week, and says it will be certified as a light sport aircraft, which will require some further refinements in the next version, to reduce the weight. It will use super-unleaded auto gas, so you can drive to the pump and fill up, and it will burn about 4.5 gallons per hour at 100 knots. The prototype is powered by a Rotax 912S. The company's work so far has been funded by private investors, who wish to remain anonymous, Dietrich said, and he expects no problems with continuing to fund his development plans. "We've been very successful at raising money," he said. The company is now taking $5,000 fully refundable deposits, and the aircraft sells for $194,000. Dietrich says the next delivery slot available is about number 50.

The Transition, with its wings mechanically folded, will fit in your garage, and when you are ready to go, you can just drive it to the airport, click a lever to fold the wings down, and take off. The vehicle's flexibility has a safety bonus, says Dietrich. "One of the leading causes of GA accidents is continued VFR flight into deteriorating weather," he observed. "There are no good options." Either the pilot takes a chance and presses on, or faces certain delays by landing short of his destination. The Transition offers a better option -- just land, and drive wherever you want to go. The company, which is based in Woburn, Mass., started among a group of engineering students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and has been developing its ideas for several years. Dietrich said he expects there may be a market for about a few hundred Transitions per year.

Fly With Bose® Aviation Headset X™
Enjoy an unmatched combination of full-spectrum noise reduction, clearer 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.

Purchase by August 16, 2008 and receive a complimentary pair of Bose in-ear headphones ($99.95 value). 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 booths 171-176 at EAA AirVenture
Branson and Rutan Unveil Latest Modern Spaceship back to top 

WhiteKnightTwo Rolls Out For The Press, Look For It Next Year At Oshkosh

WhiteKnightTwo, the huge double-hulled aircraft that will carry SpaceShipTwo and its cargo of space tourists to 50,0000 feet, rolled out to the public for the first time Monday morning at Scaled Composites in Mojave (click here for AVweb's exclusive on-scene video, live today). Shortly afterward, Will Whitehorn, CEO of Virgin Galactic, spoke with reporters at AirVenture in Oshkosh, via a Web link to the EAA Museum. Whitehorn said he expects that by next July, WhiteKnightTwo will be flying in to Oshkosh. First flight is expected by the end of this year, he said, and a thorough test regime lasting up to two years, with at least 100 flights, is planned before the ship goes into commercial service carrying tourists into space. Whitehorn said that while Virgin is the launch customer for the first two WhiteKnightTwos, he expects there is a wider commercial market for the aircraft, which has the capacity to transport large cargo items, to launch satellites, and also could launch a ship carrying a single person into orbit.

WhiteKnightTwo is the largest carbon-fiber aircraft ever built, with two cabins that can each hold eight seats, plus eight more in SpaceShipTwo. At 50,000 feet, it will drop SpaceShipTwo, with eight on board, to ride its rocket into suborbital space. Whitehorn said that altitude is optimal for the spaceship to get the most thrust while still having aerodynamic control to get the nose pointed up, but it would be possible for WhiteKnight to fly much higher if needed for other missions. Its two cabins are identical, Whitehorn said, and both can carry eight seats. Only the right side is pressurized and equipped for flying. The other side can be used to haul cargo or passengers, and he suggested that on a typical flight the ship might carry future space tourists for training purposes, and fly parabolas on its way down to give them a simulated zero-g experience.

Discover the Thrill of a Family Getaway
Discover that the best family vacation photos aren't taken through the window of a minivan. In a brand-new Cessna Stationair, every single weekend becomes your chance for a family getaway. Without ever hearing the dreaded words "Are we there yet?" Call 1 (800) 4-CESSNA. Or visit CessnaYouAreHere.com.

» Discover the thrill of Cessna Single-Engine for yourself at booths 143-156 at EAA AirVenture
Learning to See a Little Better at Oshkosh back to top 

Bendix/King's New Portables

We've known for several years that Bendix/King's engineers have been busily developing new products and, surprisingly, three of them came out of the ground this week at EAA AirVenture. Specifically, the company announced three portable devices, one a high-feature budget model and two sophisticated electronic flight bag type products based on Samsung tablet PCs and integrated from the VistaNav line which Bendix/King just bought. All of these products fly under a product flag called AV8OR.

The budget model is called the AV8OR Handheld Multi-Function Display and sells for $749. It has a self-contained GPS displaying on a 4.3-inch diagonal with touchscreen control with touch-and-drag capability for map panning. Like other state-of-the-art portables, the AV8OR Handheld will accept external XM Satellite weather data (via Bluetooth) and it includes 4GB worth of storage for an onboard MP3 and movie player. The portable also includes a sophist acted package for ground navigation with three dimensional color maps. Although the weatherlink requires a separate XM receiver, at AirVenture, Bendix/King is offering a $250 coupon toward the purchase of a new one.

At the upper end of the market segment are the AV8OR Horizon 3D and Vision 3D models, both based on Samsung tablet computers and both best thought of as serious cockpit EFB entries. Both of these systems include an air data sensor, attitude heading and reference and GPS capability. Both can also interface with external traffic and weather sensing, plus approach plate display functions. There's one other intriguing option in the Horizon and Vision offerings: Synthetic vision based on a detailed onboard terrain database. The top-of-the-line Vision 3D, a ruggedized Class II EFB, will sell for $6995 while the Horizon model will retail for $4995. For a detailed interview on these products with Bendix/King's Chad Cuniff, click here. Find these products on the web at BendixKing.com/AV8OR.

Avidyne's New Aftermarket EFIS

It's fair to say that Avidyne launched the glass cockpit revolution for light aircraft with its groundbreaking Entegra, which quickly became standard equipment in the Cirrus line. At AirVenture this week, Avidyne announced a new expansion of its glass product suite intended specifically for the aftermarket. The latest major glass product is the PFD4000, an 8-inch EFIS designed to fit into the space occupied by a standard legacy six-pack instrument grouping.

The PFD4000 is a single ADAHRS design with flight director and attitude output for autopilot control with features such as altitude pre-select, vertical speed select and heading select modes. The PFD4000 is integrated with the airplane's VLOC/GPS and offered synchronized switching from enroute flight to the approach phase. It also has six-second trend indicators based on the airplane's altitude, airspeed and heading to help reduce the pilot's workload. With the PFD4000, Avidyne joins an increasingly crowded field of contenders for the aftermarket glass market but hopes to distinguish its products with a high-definition LED-backlit XGA display (1024 by 768 pixels) that's not just sunlight readable but is vivid in all lighting conditions. The PFD4000 is of a modular design will that support synthetic vision (SVS) and highway in the sky (HITS) upgrades and they become available. Prices weren't announced at the show, but Avidyne says the PFD4000 will be available in 2009 at competitive prices. For more, hear this detailed podcast.

Related Content:
Audio interview with Avidyne's Tom Harper

Inflight. Every Flight.
XM WX Satellite Weather has quickly become the leading way to fly for pilots across the country. And now, with Aviator Pro, the brand-new weather data package from XM WX, pilots have an even better reason to fly with the datalink weather leader — inflight and every flight. See the new suite of weather data at AirVenture 2008, or click here to learn more about XM WX and Aviator Pro.

» See why XM WX Satellite Weather is the official weather provider
of EAA AirVenture when you visit WxWorx at booths 3030-3032
More New Product Announcements from the Show back to top 

Lancair Announces Piston-Powered Evolution

Lancair, which had its painted and demo-flying turbine Evolution out on the flight line this week, today announced a further development of the airplane to use piston power. In a radical break from Lancair tradition, which has most recently relied on either Continental or Superior piston power, the upcoming Evolution will use a version of the just announced Lycoming TEO-540 six-cylinder powerplant. It will produce 400 horsepower, according to Lancair president Joe Bartels.

The FADEC engine will require a new firewall-forward configuration with what have become Lancair's trademark axis-symmetric round instruments. With the Lycoming churning away, the piston Evolution will be capable of 330 knots true at altitude at "less than turbine fuel flows," according to Bartels. A specific price for the piston Evolution has not been set, but the turbine version, using a Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A, is estimated to cost between $800,000 and $1 million, depending upon options, avionics and whether the engine is new or overhauled. The piston engine and prop package should be less than $100,000, though Lycoming has not set prices on the FADEC system yet. The piston version will be developed alongside the turbine Evolution, which has just seen its first kit being delivered.

Chelton, S-TEC Merger, New Products Almost Complete

Chelton Flight Systems (CFS) and S-TEC Corporation, both part of Cobham plc's Avionics and Surveillance Division, are consolidating their offices and product integration activities and moving forward to develop new avionics as their parent merges the two companies, according to a briefing this week at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2008. S-TEC, which was acquired by Cobham at the beginning of 2008, employs 180 people and operates out of a 10-acre engineering and production campus. The merger involves closure of Chelton's Boise, Idaho, headquarters and relocation of most staff to S-TEC's facilities in Mineral Wells, Texas. The merger has gone so smoothly, the company said, its main challenges now involve branding issues.

Among the new products being developed for CFS are a GADAHRS, or all-in-one-box GPS/air data/attitude/heading reference system for both certified and experimental aircraft. Meanwhile, the company also plans to develop and STC a stability augmentation and autopilot system for light helicopters. Slated for completion by the end of 2008, CFS's efforts on the new product will first concentrate on FAR Part 27 helicopters like the Robinson R44 and then move into larger rotorcraft certificated under Part 29. Finally, as the two companies' merger is finalized, sales and support functions will be realigned, allowing "one-stop shopping" for the installed product base, including S-TEC's more than 35,000 autopilots.

Avidyne's Color Lightning System Provides Truly Tactical Weather Detection
Avidyne's TWX670 Tactical Lightning Detection System provides highly-accurate depiction of lightning from 0nm-200nm and features TWxCell™ and Color Strike modes on compatible displays, including Avidyne's EX500, EX5000 and MHD300. In addition, the TWX670 provides alternate interface protocols for compatibility with other leading manufacturers' displays. Click here for more information.

» See Avidyne's state-of-the-art technologies in action at booths 2098-2101 (Combo E) at EAA AirVenture
Arriving at Oshkosh back to top 

Cirrus Jet Arrives Wednesday

Cirrus Design confirmed that the public unveiling of its Vision SJ50 jet will take place at EAA AirVenture on Wednesday at about 2:15. The aircraft first flew July 3 and has been undergoing initial flight testing in Duluth. The company had hoped to bring the aircraft to Oshkosh but CEO Alan Klapmeier said it would depend on the progress of the flight testing and the discretion of the test pilots. The aircraft was announced 13 months ago and has been under development for four years.

Radium Dial Check At Border

A Canadian Cessna 170 owner says he was delayed almost three hours on the flight to AirVenture while U.S. authorities checked his aircraft and his flying partner's Globe Swift, for radioactive material in the instruments. Joe Scoles says his vintage 170 most likely has radium dials but he was shocked when the TSA official sweeping his and his partner's Swift with a detector at Port Huron, Mich., told him his aircraft was just below the limit of detectable radiation allowed in the U.S. He also said that it could have been impounded if it was above that limit. "That was a real surprise to me," he said.

The Department of Homeland Security announced last year that it would be screening aircraft coming into the country for radioactive material, but the announcement suggested they would be looking for nuclear material; Scoles said that's not the impression he got. "They knew exactly what they were looking for," he said. "They went straight to the panel.

Ever Wish You Could Flip a Switch and Turn IFR Visibility into VFR?
To find out more, go to True Flight.
AVweb Audio — Are You Listening? back to top 

AVweb's AirVenture 2008 Podcast #4: Martin Rocket Pack at AirVenture

File Size 7.3 MB / Running Time 7:55

Podcast Index | How to Listen | Subscribe Via RSS

Remember that cool rocket belt James Bond flew in Thunderball? Glenn and Vanessa Martin have their own version, but it will fly for up to five minutes. See it fly at OSH this week and hear the details on flying it from Vanessa in this podcast.

This podcast is brought to you by Lightspeed Aviation, makers of the Zulu ANR headset ...

Click here to listen. (7.3 MB, 7:55)

AVweb's AirVenture 2008 Podcast #5: Avidyne's New PFD4000

File Size 7.1 MB / Running Time 7:46

Podcast Index | How to Listen | Subscribe Via RSS

Avidyne pioneered the first small aircraft glass cockpit for new airplanes — the Cirrus line — and now it's forging ahead with a new EFIS product for the aftermarket, an affordable, single ADAHRS primary flight display that will fit into legacy panels. Paul Bertorelli spoke with Avidyne's Tom Harper about glass panels and the PFD4000.

This podcast is brought to you by WxWorx XM WX Satellite Weather, official weather provider of EAA AirVenture ...

Click here to listen. (7.1 MB, 7:46)

AVweb's AirVenture 2008 Podcast #6: Bendix/King's Impressive New Portables

File Size 6.6 MB / Running Time 7:12

Podcast Index | How to Listen | Subscribe Via RSS

Bendix/King has been busy over the last year and stunned avionics shoppers this week with three new portable navigators, including one weatherlink-capable model for only $749. Hear all about in this podcast with Bendix/King's Chad Cunniff.

This podcast is brought to you by Bose Corporation's Aviation Headset X™ ...

Click here to listen. (6.6 MB, 7:12)

Announcing: First-Ever, Zero-Down Factory Engine Financing!
Air Power, Inc. — the World's Largest Factory Engine Distributor — announces an industry first: long-term, low-interest, no-money-down financing on all Continental and Lycoming Genuine Factory Engines: New, Remanufactured, and Overhauled, always sold at just $300 over factory invoice. Offering 20-year 6.9% simple interest Factory Engine Loans with no prepayment penalty and payments as low as $129.79 for a Cessna Skyhawk Factory Engine. For details, call Air Power at (888) 759-4295, or go online to FactoryEngines.com.
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 

AVweb's AirVenture 2008 Video #3: A Guided Tour of the ICON LSA Cockpit with CTO Matthew Junta

Original, Exclusive Videos from AVweb | Reader-Submitted & Viral Videos

Matthew Junta, Vice President of Engineering and Chief Technical officer for Icon Aircraft gives AVweb's Jeff Van West a look inside the Icon Amphibian LSA in this original video from AVweb's Glenn Pew.

Expect more videos from Jeff, Glenn, and AVweb team throughout EAA AirVenture.

This video is brought to you by Lightspeed Aviation and WxWorx XM WX Satellite Weather ...

Don't see a video screen?
Try disabling ad blockers and refreshing this page.
If that doesn't work, click here to download the video directly.

AVweb's AirVenture 2008 Video #4: Virgin Galactic Unveils WhiteKnightTwo 'Eve' in Mojave, California

Original, Exclusive Videos from AVweb | Reader-Submitted & Viral Videos

Virgin Galactic today unveiled its WhiteKnightTwo — a twin-hulled, four-engined, SpaceShipTwo-hauling aircraft — at Scaled Composites in Mojave, California. Entrepreneur and project financier Richard Branson and designer Burt Rutan spoke at the event, and we have video to share thanks to the efforts of Linda Reynolds and AVweb Video Editor Glenn Pew.

This video is brought to you by Bose Corporation and WxWorx XM WX Satellite Weather ...

Don't see a video screen?
Try disabling ad blockers and refreshing this page.
If that doesn't work, click here to download the video directly.

Lycoming® — The Engines of Choice
Lycoming® produces the most complete line of horizontally opposed, air-cooled four-, six-, and eight-cylinder certified aircraft engines available, with power ranging from 100 to 400 HP. For homebuilders, air race and aerobatic pilots, and others looking for non-certified engines with Lycoming dependability, Lycoming offers custom-built Thunderbolt Engines. Lycoming piston engines have a reputation for reaching or exceeding TBO. For more information, please visit Lycoming.com.

» Learn more about the full line of Lycoming Engines at booths 177-182 at EAA AirVenture
Images from the Show back to top 

AVweb's AirVenture 2008 Galleries: Day Two

The public arrived today for EAA AirVenture, and now the fun can really begin!

Click here to view photos.

Between Wheels Up and Wheels Down, There Is One Important Word: How
As the team managing the FAA AFSS system, Lockheed Martin serves nearly 90,000 general aviation pilots every week. Providing timely, accurate information and helpful service 24/7. From weather forecasts to en route information, from Hawaii to Puerto Rico, ensuring flight safety in the National Airspace System is all a question of how. And it is the how that makes all the difference. Click here for more.
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You! back to top 

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

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. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.

More AVweb for Your Inbox back to top 

AVwebBiz: AVweb's Business Aviation Newsletter

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/.

Names Behind the News back to top 

Meet the AVwebFlash Team

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.

If you're having trouble reading this newsletter in its HTML-rich format (or if you'd prefer a lighter, simpler format for your PDA or handheld device), there's also a text-only version of AVwebFlash. For complete instructions on making the switch, click here.

Aviate. Navigate. Communicate.