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Volume 14, Number 39b
September 25, 2008
 
NEW! Zulu with Panel Power!
With the new Zulu: P (Panel Power) headset, Lightspeed has raised the bar in performance, comfort and crystal-clear audio quality, with more total noise cancellation than any other headset — and no batteries needed! The Zulu: P uses the same LEMO plug that you may already have installed. The Zulu: P also comes with built-in Bluetooth. No one else offers this much in a total headset package. Click here for more information.
 
SkyCatcher Prototype Updateback to top 
 
Sponsor Announcement

SKYCATCHER CRASH UPDATE
The test pilot for the Cessna 162 SkyCatcher LSA prototype that crashed last week was spin-testing the airplane and put it into a cross-controlled, power-on stall, Cessna spokesman Doug Oliver told AVweb this week. "He got into a flat spin and couldn't recover," Oliver said. The airplane, which was one of several used in the test program, remained intact until it hit the ground. The spin testing started at about 10,000 feet, and the pilot bailed out safely at about 5,000 feet above the ground. The kind of testing it was undergoing was beyond what is required for the airplane's intended ASTM light sport aircraft certification, Oliver said. He added that the accident is still under investigation but he doesn't expect the findings will result in any plans to modify the design. The airplane was equipped with a BRS ballistic recovery parachute, which was activated by the test pilot but failed to deploy. Larry Williams, CEO of BRS, told AVweb this week it is too early to determine exactly why the chute didn't work. "It looks to me that the parameters were pretty exceptional," he said. "It was an unusual situation." He added that BRS is working with Cessna and the NTSB to determine what happened, and he might have more information later in the week. More...

 
Win a Brand-New Ford Mustang GT Convertible!!!
Every Genuine Factory Engine purchased from Air Power, Inc. between September 8, 2008 and July 20, 2009 automatically is entered to win a Brand New Ford Mustang GT Convertible! For official rules and details, visit Air Power online at the web site FactoryEngines.com or call Air Power at (888) 759-4295.

Don't forget: Air Power's First-Ever, Zero-Down Factory Engine Financing makes it easier than ever to get the Factory Engine you've always wanted!
 
Meanwhile, on the Cutting Edgeback to top 
 

NASA, USAF EXPAND HYPERSONIC RESEARCH EFFORTS
NASA and the U.S. Air Force said this week they intend to establish three national hypersonic science centers and they are actively seeking university and industry partners. Hypersonic speed is defined as Mach 5 and faster. "We have identified three critical research areas: air-breathing propulsion, materials and structures, and boundary layer control," said James Pittman, principal investigator for the Hypersonics Project at NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va. "These three areas are the biggest hurdles to successful hypersonic flight and low-cost space access using an air-breathing engine." NASA and the Air Force plan to set aside as much as $30 million to fund the centers over five years. More...

 
Introducing AV8OR™ from Bendix/King by Honeywell
The AV8OR is the portable and affordable GPS built specifically for pilots, by a company that knows pilots. With navigation routing, planning and weather information for the aircraft and the automobile, the AV8OR uses aviation software and symbology pilots understand. Its 4.3-inch touch screen is larger and easier to read than competing GPS systems, with an intuitive interface derived from the pilot-friendly, panel-mounted Bendix/King multi-function display systems. For more information, go online.
 
Strange Days for Eclipseback to top 
 

ECLIPSE'S RUSSIAN FACTORY GETS FINANCING, APPROVALS
Russian officials have given their OK to allow the construction of a factory in Ulyanovsk, Russia, where copies of the Eclipse 500 jet will be assembled, Eclipse Aviation announced on Tuesday. The Russian State Bank, chaired by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, will finance the project in full, providing $205 million in return for a share of the enterprise. "Obtaining this approval and financing is an enormous step forward in our efforts to globalize the Eclipse 500 and create a highly competitive worldwide business model for Eclipse Aviation," Eclipse CEO Roel Pieper said in a news release. Components of the jet will be manufactured elsewhere and shipped to Russia for assembly. The factory will be built in Ulyanovsk, and is expected to be ready to start production in 2010. Workers will build up to 800 jets a year. The factory in Albuquerque will continue to work at full capacity, the company said. More...

AIR TAXI OPERATORS AIM TO FILL DAYJET'S SLOTS
For those passengers who had grown to enjoy DayJet's air-taxi service and find themselves missing on-demand air transportation since the operator suspended its services last week, other air-taxi companies are offering to fill the gap. SATSair, ImagineAir, and North American Jet, all members of the Air Taxi Association (ATXA), provide service to all 60 of the communities in the Southeastern U.S. where DayJet formerly served more than 2,400 members. The carriers operate a combined fleet of over 30 Cirrus SR-22 and Eclipse 500 aircraft. "DayJet shined a bright light upon the emerging next-generation air-taxi industry and it is our duty to help affected passengers and communities," said ATXA President Joe Leader. The companies are offering discounts and price matches to DayJet customers. More...

 
AveoFlash Experimental Airplane Lights Available at Aircraft Spruce!
AveoFlash™ LED lights feature the exclusive SmartStrobe™ synchronizer internal circuitry, eliminating the need for external heavy-draw flasher/strobe box units. Includes user-selectable flash patterns, with a choice of five patterns, along with user-selectable flash speed from 2-150 flashes per minute. The PowerOptimizer™ circuitry permits a universal product for voltage from 9-32 volts (no separate voltage), resulting in lower power consumption. Call Aircraft Spruce at 1 (877) 4-SPRUCE, or visit online.
 
Safer Skiesback to top 
 

TRAINEES IN THE TOWER IN AIRLINER "SWERVE"
An incident that thankfully ended with some fairly rattled pilots and passengers but no more than a little lost tire rubber begs the question of who is training whom at some of the nation's air traffic control towers. The National Air Traffic Controllers Union says two trainee controllers were in on duty by themselves in the Lehigh International Airport tower when a Mesa Airlines CRJ700 had to swerve (as in the sudden deviation from a straight path) to avoid a just-landed Cessna 172 while taking off from the Allentown, Pa., airport. The widely accepted estimate is the RJ, with 60 passengers aboard, missed the 172 by about 10 feet while decelerating from 120 knots. According to the NTSB, the Cessna was told to take an early taxiway exit but missed and the pilot reported he or she was heading for the next taxiway. The trainees missed that and, thinking the 172 had left the runway, cleared the RJ for takeoff. More...

CANADA'S SAFETY BOARD SEEKS STRICTER BALLOONING OVERSIGHT
Companies that offer hot-air balloon rides to the public should be subject to periodic inspections by federal officials, according to a report by Canada's Transportation Safety Board. Two hot-air balloons were destroyed by fire in August 2007 in Canada while carrying paying passengers. Two passengers died and several others were badly hurt. The board concluded that Canada's Department of Transport should require commercial balloon operations that take paying passengers to provide a level of safety equivalent to that established for other aircraft of equal passenger-carrying capacity. Standards and regulations should be clear, and inspections should ensure that they are met, the safety board said. The safety board also wants rules established to ensure that balloons carrying paying passengers are equipped with an emergency fuel shut-off. Transport Canada said it will conduct a risk assessment of the industry before deciding if new regulations are necessary. More...

 
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. Learn more online.
 
News Briefsback to top 
 

CUSTOMS PROPOSAL WON'T FLY, AOPA TELLS WHITE HOUSE
AOPA staffers met with officials from the White House Office of Management and Budget last week and explained that many general aviation pilots are not happy with a proposal that would require them to electronically provide advance notice and passenger manifests when crossing the U.S. border. "While the idea of telling Customs who is on the aircraft prior to entering the United States is OK with members," said Andy Cebula, AOPA executive vice president of government affairs, "we reinforced the fact that the requirement to do this electronically would significantly impair general aviation operations." The problem with the rule is that many GA airports in the border regions do not have the required Internet access. A final rule is expected within a few months, AOPA said. More...

FAA FUNDING EXTENDED TO MARCH 2009
It's been a challenge to get Congress to act on FAA funding this year, with elections looming and a change in administration certain, and this week the issue was postponed yet again -- this time until March 2009. "That means we can declare victory in the battle against user fees, at least in 2008," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "But it also means we start the battle anew in 2009," said Andy Cebula, AOPA executive vice president of government affairs. "A new Congress means new FAA funding bills will have to be introduced. And the user fee proponents haven't gone away. With rising deficits, the federal government has even more pressures on its spending and the need for new revenue sources." On Tuesday, both the House and Senate passed bills that will extend the deadline and authorize the FAA to continue its current spending level, according to AOPA. The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) also weighed in, urging Congress to have a new funding plan ready to go by the time this one expires. More...

ON THE FLY ...
FAA suspended two airline pilots who allegedly fell asleep during a flight...
FYI, USAIG, the United States Aircraft Insurance Group, is NOT affiliated with AIG, the American International Group....
GE video explores the meaning of EAA AirVenture as an innovation center...
Deadline is nearing for comments on 51-percent rule...
The 2008 US National Aerobatic Championships are under way in Texas...
Two Seattle pilots flew 10,000 miles around Canada in their Beavers...
Three vintage airplanes flew across the U.S. to honor an airmail anniversary. More...

 
Some of Aviation's Worst Accidents Have Happened on the Ground; Find Out Why
Refresh your skills and learn how to avoid runway incursions by taking advantage of the Air Safety Foundation's complimentary runway safety tools. ASF's online Runway Safety Interactive Course can be completed in less than an hour, and completion qualifies towards AOPA Accident Forgiveness and the FAA Wings Program. Plus, ASF's downloadable Runway Safety Flash Cards help pilots better understand runway signage and markings. Click for your runway safety tools.
 
New on AVwebback to top 
 

THE SAVVY AVIATOR #62: WHAT'S THAT GOING TO COST?
When it comes to aviation maintenance, it's not impolite to ask what something is going to cost. It's mandatory. More...

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: IS THE VLJ DREAM DEAD?
Two years ago, very light jets were seen as the future of business aviation and possible a savior for the entire industry. A number of recent events have shaken the faith of even true believers, but it's way too early to count VLJs out. This week, we want to hear what you think. Plus: Find out how AVweb readers answered last week's poll, on using their airplanes for humanitarian volunteer efforts. More...

 
Piper Matrix — Piper Compelling
Click here for more information on the new Matrix, Piper's next generation of cabin-class sophistication. Compellingly priced at $757,000.
 
Commentary & Opinionback to top 
 

AVWEB INSIDER BLOG: FSS UNDER LOCKMART — STOP WHINING AND LOBBY FOR SOME BETTER TOOLS
Don't like the brave new world of Lockheed-Martin's Flight Service? Too bad. It's here to stay and after three years of working at it they've clawed their way back up to the level of adequate. Some of what we once had with locally knowledgeable briefers is gone forever, but at least one gem of bygone days could be brought back with the right software and some willing users, according to IFR magazine Editor-in-Chief Jeff van West, who takes the new FSS system to task in the latest installment of our AVweb Insider Blog. More...

AVWEB INSIDER BLOG: FRESH HELL FOR ECLIPSE — A POSTER CHILD FOR FAA MISMANAGEMENT
In 2006, the FAA wasn't moving quickly enough to certify Eclipse's EA500, so the company pressured the agency from the top to move faster. AVweb Editorial Director Paul Bertorelli says that will ultimately slow certification projects for everyone, and you can read his rationale in the latest installment of the AVweb Insider blog. More...

AVWEB INSIDER BLOG: WHY DON'T YOU HAVE AN ENGINE MONITOR?
In the era of $6 and higher gas, there's no reason not to have one of these devices. It will help with leaning and provide all-important engine maintenance cues. Read all about monitors on the AVweb Insider Blog, in an article from Light Plane Maintenance by editor Kim Santerre. More...

 
Win This Plane!
Enter AOPA's 2008 Sweepstakes and you could be flying high in a fully refurbished Piper Archer II, accented with a new instrument panel featuring the world's first installed certified EFD1000 PFD. Custom extras include handcrafted leather seats, tie-down rings, nav light retainers, and wood trim accents. Click for more details.
 
What You May Have Missed in AVwebBizback to top 
 

TURBINE BARON TOUTED AS VLJ SUBSTITUTE
If your Baron could climb at 4,500 fpm and cruise at 300 knots, why would you need a jet? That's the thought process Rocket Engineering is promoting as it celebrates first flight of its fourth turbine conversion. The company, which already has turbine STCs on the Bonanza, Duke and Piper Mirage, has fitted the 500-shp Pratt and Whitney Canada PT6A-21 to a Baron in hopes of having a retrofit package STC'd by late 2009. "The combination of speed, performance and economy of the new P-Baron PT6A turbo-prop are very realistic, and will serve as a viable and compelling alternative to the yet unproven VLJ market," said Rocket Engineering's president, Darwin Conrad. More...

HOW TO TEST A JET: PIPER'S CHIEF TEST PILOT TELLS HOW
Continuing our coverage of Piper's press debut of its new jet on September 18, 2008, the company's chief test pilot, Dave Schwartz, tells AVweb's Paul Bertorelli how the aircraft is performing in the early stages of the test program. More...

PIPERJET PRESS DEMO PHOTO GALLERY
Piper rolled out the red carpet for members of the press wanting an inside look at their single-engine very light jet entry, the PiperJet, and AVweb's Paul Bertorelli was on hand to snap a few photos of the demo model in action. Piper VP of Sales Bob Kromer told us in a podcast interview that we can expect the first deliveries in 2011. (For more on Piper's press event, click here.) More...

 
Join NAA and Help Shape the Next Century of Flight
It's a great time to join the National Aeronautic Association (NAA), the nation's oldest aviation organization. At $39 a year, NAA membership is a terrific value for any aviation enthusiast! Members receive the Smithsonian's Air & Space magazine, plus access to aviation records and much more. To become an NAA member, sign up online or call (703) 416-4888 and press 4.
 
Don't Miss It Next Week — Sign Up for AVwebBizback 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/. More...

HELP AVWEBBIZ SPREAD YOUR NBAA NEWS
The world's most important business aviation event, the National Business Aviation Association's annual convention, is coming up Oct. 6-8 in Orlando and there will be hundreds of product announcements and updates. AVweb will be there with daily coverage of the events, news conferences and announcements that make this show so important but if your company has something more than 100,000 business aviation decision-makers need to know about, we're encouraging you to let us know in advance. That way we can give your news the full attention it deserves and make sure it's released in a timely fashion during our coverage. Don't worry. We'll strictly observe all embargos. Send your advance material to rniles@avweb.com and thanks for your help in making our coverage the most comprehensive available. More...

 
Attention, Turboprop Operators! Reserve October 28-30 on Your Calendars
Turboprop Expo 2008, October 28-30 in Scottsdale, AZ, will offer specialized programs including seminar tracks for airframe and turboprop engine topics as well as operational and ownership information. Dr. David Strahle will present his informative and acclaimed seminar: Understanding Nexrad Imagery. Enjoy the relaxing surroundings of a classic resort and network with industry leaders at Turboprop Expo 2008. For more information and to register, visit online.
 
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You!back to top 
 

WHICH DEICING SYSTEM DO YOU PREFER?
With winter weather coming, now's a good time to think about the three main deicing systems out there: pneumatic boots, TKS and electro-thermal. Sister publication Aviation Consumer is conducting a survey on what pilots think about them. Even if you have experience with only two of the three, we'd like to hear from you. Send a note to aviation_safety@hotmail.com to share your experiences. (The results will appear in a future issue of Aviation Consumer. For subscription information, click here.) More...

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. What have you heard? More...

 
Aviation Consumer, the Only Magazine with the Guts to Tell the Truth
Truth about the gear you buy and the planes you fly. Aviation Consumer is packed with in-depth and uncompromising ratings of equipment, avionics, accessories, mods, services, aircraft, and much more. Order online and receive unlimited access to Aviation Consumer's ratings-packed web information database!
 
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 
 

FBO OF THE WEEK: UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL MISSOURI FBO (SKYHAVEN AIRPORT, KRCM, WARRENSBURG, MO)

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to an FBO at Warrensburg, Missouri's Skyhaven Airport (KRCM) run by the Department of Aviation at the University of Central Missouri.

AVweb reader Ryan Sanders gave the location his hearty recommendation:

I cannot say enough about this FBO. I get great service every time I come into Warrensburg. Although students run the University's FBO, they really are a great bunch. All ... are extremely passionate about aviation, and they pass this on to their customers. They are quick on fuel, and the prices are the best in the Midwest.

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!

More...

 
Reader-Submitted Photosback to top 
 

PICTURE OF THE WEEK: AVWEB'S FLYING PHOTOGRAPHY SHOWCASE
The weather is beginning to cool down a bit at "POTW" world headquarters, and that means we're spending more time indoors. Thankfully, AVweb readers from around the globe continue to submit their original photos to our weekly contest, helping us pass the time in style. Whereas we often close our weekly round-up of reader photos with a breathtaking sunset, we're turning things on their head today. Guy Lynch of Pewsey, Wiltshire (U.K.) kicks off this week's entries with plenty of orange and just a hint of crisp evening air. More...

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:

Publisher
Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Editor-in-Chief
Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

Webmaster
Scott Simmons

Contributors
Mariano Rosales
Jeff van West

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.

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