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» Discover the thrill of Cessna Single-Engine for yourself at booths 143-156 at EAA AirVenture
The Tuesday morning throngs at EAA AirVenture seemed simultaneously amazed and disappointed -- hoping that their George Jetson, or James Bond, dreams were about to be realized, the modest and
safety-conscious demo by the Martin Jetpack team was noisy and blustery, but not quite up to the futuristic zip-and-zoom show that most
seemed to expect. But for the most part, the crowd seemed to recognize that while the Martin Jetpack might not be a leap into the future, it is nonetheless a promising start. New Zealander Glenn
Martin, who designed the jetpack, said he has been working on it for 30 years. It is not jet-powered, but uses a small two-stroke piston engine that Martin developed expressly for this use. The engine
powers two ducted fans, which the flyer can control with two joysticks. The vehicle is built mainly from carbon fiber composite materials. It weighs about 250 pounds empty, and can be flown as an
ultralight. It carries about 5 gallons of fuel, and could fly about 30 miles at 63 mph, the company says. (Click here to see AVweb's exclusive video of the jetpack in flight.)
The vehicle has been flight-tested in New Zealand, but hasn't reached more than 6 feet above the ground. Martin said the vehicle should be able to fly up to 8,000 feet in altitude, and he plans to
fly it up to about 500 feet within the next six months. Copies are for sale as of this week, prices start at $100,000. Martin said he sees it as a recreational sport vehicle and expects he might sell
10 to 20 by this time next year.
Zulu and Relentless. Game, Set, Match!
Kevin Eldredge has parked his racing plane Relentless in the Lightspeed booth and is telling everyone about why he owns a Zulu. "It is amazing. I haven't found anything that's as
quiet or nearly as comfortable. The audio quality is better than anything I've ever heard through any headset." If you're sitting at home reading this,
take a look at
Kevin's plane on Lightspeed's web site.
» Try Lightspeed's Zulu and compare it to other premium brands at booths 2019-2020 & 2023 at EAA AirVenture
The aviation world got its first live look on Tuesday afternoon at what hopes to be the next big air sport -- rocket racing. With a huge EAA AirVenture audience gathered to watch under cloudy skies, a
single ship from the Rocket Racing League lined up on the runway, lit its rocket engine for a noisy and abrupt takeoff, climbed
straight into the sky, then turned off the rocket, glided back to position above the field, and did it again. The demo may not have quite rocked the world, but it did show that the concept works and
the thing will fly. Essentially a single-seat Velocity homebuilt with a 1,500-pound-thrust rocket engine attached, the ship can reach speeds above 300 knots. The League plans to stage competitions
with large video screens that depict a race course and make use of cameras mounted on the wings and in the cockpit to engage the audience with the action.
The league had hoped to debut its actual racing competition at Oshkosh this week, but was unable to get FAA approval in time. Now the first race is set for Reno in September. More demo flights are
scheduled for Oshkosh later in the week.
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» Register to win a Bendix/King AV8OR by Honeywell at booths 2081-2086 at EAA AirVenture
And Beyond the Skies? Well, There's These Guys
EAA reserved its largest pavilion, and every seat was filled, with more crowding in around the edges, when Burt Rutan, Sir Richard Branson, and Will Whitehorn arrived at AirVenture on Tuesday
afternoon -- and the crowd rose to a thundering, standing ovation to welcome the virtual rock stars of the experimental world. Rutan has been coming to Oshkosh every year since 1971, he said, missing
only last year due to health issues, and he looked fit and tan and delighted to be back in front of his favorite audience. Whitehorn, CEO of Virgin Galactic, showed a brief video of the unveiling of WhiteKnightTwo at Mojave on Monday (click here to see that event via AVweb video), and after a few brief remarks the
forum was turned over to questions from the audience. Rutan said he expects that within his lifetime, tourists will not only be routinely flying into space, they will also be visiting orbiting resort
hotels and taking a loop around the moon. Whitehorn said that he plans to fly space trips from many venues besides the New Mexico spaceport now under construction, and he hopes that the first place
they will launch from will be Oshkosh -- and Rutan added that he hopes to sell $5 raffle tickets to fill those six seats.
Whitehorn emphasized the practical uses of the technology that is being developed, and said he envisions a future when suborbital trajectories will be used for point-to-point travel -- for example,
hopping from Sydney to Oshkosh in three hours or less. Rutan also made his usual pitch inviting young, passionate engineers in the audience to send their resumes to him at Scaled Composites -- but
added that Mojave is just about the ugliest and worst place to live in the world. That's an asset, he said, when you want to work on projects without a lot of outside interference.
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» Try out the Headset X and other Bose Corporation products at booths 171-176 at EAA AirVenture
Two years after Garmin announced it was going after the glass-panel retrofit market with its G600, the system is now certified and approved on 785 aircraft. For $29,995, the system gives you two
6.5-inch LCD screens set up with a PFD and MFD. The installation is designed to fit in the same basic area as a standard aircraft six-pack. Garmin contendsand we agreethat the unique plus
of the setup is that the MFD is closer to the pilots scan and hands that a conventional MFD on the audio stack. The G600 will integrate with the usual suspectsXM datalink weather, various
traffic-awareness systems, a variety of autopilots and several flight directorsand be compatible with TAWS, ADS-B, and on-board radar in the future. Garmin introduced other products and services
The GMA 240 is an audio panel aimed squarely at experimental and LSA aircraft with a built-in intercom, support for two external music inputs (which auto-mute when ATC calls on the radio), support
for XM radio from a Garmin 396/496, and a 2.5 mm jack on the front for connecting a cell phone. The GMA 240 will sell for $895. Garmin also announced a new website for Garmin GPS users called
flygarmin.com. The site streamlines the process for updating databases for Garmin handheld and panel-mount data. Users should be able to connect their Garmin device or datacard and get the right
databases with just a few clicks. They can also see at a glance what databases are current, changing soon, or out of date. Jeppesen-derived data still must come from Jeppesen.com, but Garmin hopes the
site well eventually be a one-stop update center.
The folks at Rolls Royce introduced their brand-new GA turboprop at EAA AirVenture on Tuesday morning, complete with flashing lights, a puff of smoke, and a couple of tough-looking guys in dark
glasses to shout "Clear prop!" as the curtains parted and the new engine rolled out. The RR 500 TP aims to "capture a significant market share in the light, fixed-wing general aviation segment," the
company said. It's multi-fuel-capable and will deliver 350 to 450 shaft horsepower at half the weight of equivalent pistons, the company said. Other features include low pilot workload, reduced cabin
noise, unimpeded climb-to-altitude performance, and a 2,000-hour shop visit interval. More information will be available later in a podcast interview with Rolls Royce staff, by AVweb editor
The engine will be produced at a Rolls Royce facility in Indianapolis, Ind., where a new small-engine assembly line is already producing the RR300 engine. More info about the new engine is
available online at the company Web site. If you are on the field at Oshkosh, the engine is on display at the Rolls Royce
exhibit near Aeroshell Square, and technical talks about it will take place Tuesday and Wednesday at 2 p.m.
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Vern Raburn was shown the door at the company he created. Why did things go so horribly wrong, and didn't Raburn see the axe before it fell? In our latest installment of live blogs from EAA
AirVenture in Oshkosh, Paul Bertorelli shares some ideas on what it might take shore up confidence in Eclipe and deliver that really cool jet we keep hearing about.
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
Rob Kalberer gives us a preview of several new must-have cockpit devices from True Flight in this photo-enhanced podcast. You can
listen to the MP3 file as usual and hear about these products, or you can click the Photo Podcast graphic at right (or here if you aren't reading this on
AVweb) to view photos as you listen.
Why? The agency tried to simplify questions about the 51 percent rule, but actually ended up punishing the entire industry for the sins of a few. Kitplanes Editor-in-Chief Marc Cook
has blogged about it here on AVweb and written about the new rules elsewhere. Hear more in this podcast
interview with Marc, the first of a series.
During AirVenture 2008, our friends at Aircraft Spruce and Specialty are giving away a Lightspeed Zulu headset and a Garmin GPSMap 496. Aviation Safety Editor-in-Chief Jeb Burnside spoke
with Jim Irwin of Aircraft Spruce about how you can get your name into the pot here at Oshkosh.
Dual Antenna Traffic Systems Simply Perform Better Avidyne's dual-antenna TAS600 Systems detect other aircraft sooner and more accurately, avoiding the shadowing effects inherent with single-antenna systems. TAS600 actively
interrogate other aircraft, providing timely alerts and precise locations of conflicting traffic. Starting at just $9,990, the dual-antenna TAS600 provides full-time protection and higher
performance. When it comes to safety, you want to see the whole picture.
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» See Avidyne's state-of-the-art technologies in action at booths 2098-2101 (Combo E) at EAA AirVenture
The Martin ducted-fan-powered "JetPack" debuted at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2008, and AVweb Video Editor Glenn Pew was on
hand to see how well it flew. Or hovered. However you describe its behavior, it certainly drew a crowd.
Rocket-powered homebuilt Velocity aircraft made a public debut at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2008, and the words "Rocket Racing League" were on everyone's lips throughout the afternoon.
AVweb Video Editor Glenn Pew brought
back a taste of the action ... .
Between rocket racing and rocket packs, it was a noisy day at EAA AirVenture but somehow, no one seemed to mind. Take a few moments to wander the grounds with photographer
Mariano Rosales (but don't expect him to buy you a bratwurst).
JA Air Center, Your Garmin Source
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» Sell your used portable GPS to JA Air Center at booths 2088-2089 at EAA AirVenture
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via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.
Precise Flight: Hidden in Plain Sight
With design capabilities as varied as the number of aircraft models available, it's easy to find at least one device manufactured by Precise Flight in the cabin, cockpit, or body of any
aircraft on the market. In fact, integration is a key characteristic of Precise Flight's operating code. So when attending EAA AirVenture, be sure to fly into Precise Flight's booth and
check them out. After all, they're hidden in plain sight.
» You'll find Precise Flight "hiding in plain sight" at booth 2090 at EAA AirVenture
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