AVwebFlash Complete Issue: Volume 14, Number 40a

September 29, 2008

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
 
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. Learn more and order.

Quotes reprinted with permission: Professional Pilot, 2007 Headset Preference Survey, 12/07; Aviation Consumer, 8/07.
 
Top News: Safety & Security back to top 
 
Sponsor Announcement

Airport Security Abroad Allows Impersonator In Cockpit

An Egyptian expatriate entered the cockpit of an aircraft at Kuwait International Airport by impersonating a Brazilian pilot, "failed to operate the plane," and moved on to impersonate a Brazilian engineer using the identity card he found in the first aircraft's cockpit, according to Arab Times Online. However the suspect's second attempt was thwarted by an employee, who, when asked by the suspect about the location of an aircraft bound for Luxor, noticed that the man bore no resemblance to the ID card he carried. The employee called security, who promptly arrested the suspect. Authorities are now investigating how the suspect managed to slip past a "high security" area to reach the first aircraft's hangar. The case has won personal attention from Kuwait's Minister of Interior and strict measures are expected against employees who "are found to have been negligent in their duty."

German Police Raid KLM Flight, Arrest Terror Suspects

Two suspected terrorists on a KLM flight out of Cologne, Germany, allegedly intent on waging jihad, were pulled from their flight before it departed for Amsterdam, Friday. A Berlin paper reported that the suspects planned to fly on KLM to Uganda and on to Pakistan, but that report was not readily confirmed by authorities. Authorities have said that they've obtained notes previously written by the men stating their intent to participate in jihad and die in an attack. The two men, a 24-year-old Somali-born German and a 23-year-old Somali, had been followed by police for months. It does not appear the men had any plans to hijack the aircraft and a search of their belongings found no indication the men were prepared to launch an attack. However, they were allegedly traveling to a destination with the ultimate goal of receiving training to kill enemies of their jihad, likely in eastern Africa. The authorities' "storming" of the aircraft "all went off in quite an unspectacular manner," a police spokesman told ABC news.

 
Smart Safety ... Leave Anxiety Out of Your Flight Plan
As a Cirrus owner, you join a lifestyle that takes safety very seriously. Whether flying for pleasure or business, you always fly smart and safe. Cirrus Perspective by Garmin is designed to help by giving you more time and information to make better decisions, reduce workload, and improve your overall flying experience. Cirrus Perspective adds more ability to experience the Cirrus lifestyle fully and leave anxiety out of your flight plan. For complete features, go online.
 
Global Demand the Answer to Economic Uncertainty? back to top 
 

School Expands Training Of Foreign Pilots

A falling dollar and faltering economy may not be all bad for some U.S. businesses ... especially one pilot training facility that caters to foreign countries with blooming aviation markets. Chinese nationals will be trained in Denton, Texas, at the US Aviation Group for careers as commercial pilots, arriving by November and returning to China about one year later with multi-engine, IFR and commercial ratings. They'll also have passed the ATP written exam. Following Chinese approval, USAG announced Thursday that a first group of students comprising about 25 "college graduates" ranging in age from 19-22 will begin training with a one-month course in the English language as it relates to aviation. Eleven months later, they'll have "spent 10 hours at the controls of a King Air" plus ten more in the simulator (along with other training in Cessna 152 and 172 aircraft) and 300 more Chinese pilot trainees will have been entered into the program. USAG may acquire more aircraft to keep up, and with light aircraft sales in decline, it may be a good time to buy.

Following the terrorist attacks of 9/11, U.S. training of foreign students was complicated. USAG has been training students from India "for the past couple years" and offers training for American student pilots, as well.

 
When Is the Last Time You Reviewed Your Estate Plan?
Estate tax reform is a hot button issue in Washington. The federal estate tax may change significantly. What can you do to move ahead on your estate plan? Review your existing plan now — especially if you haven't done so within the past year. Pilot Insurance Center's combination of insurance expertise and aviation underwriting can help provide the most competitive products for your estate-planning needs. To schedule an estate-planning review, call PIC at 1 (800) 380-8376 or visit online.
 
Watching Washington back to top 
 

Eclipse Certification Hearings, The Aftermath

Formal ramifications from a Sept. 17 congressional hearing that heard criticism of the FAA's certification of the Eclipse 500 from Department of Transportation Inspector General Calvin Scovel may be few, but that doesn't mean the issue is going quietly into the night. A recent take on the events remains critical of the hearing's direction, stating the DOT IG believes the hearing's focus was "mainly on the FAA's actions rather than the safety of the Eclipse jets." The article, published Friday in New Mexico Business Weekly, points again to Scovel's belief that the problems and concerns raised by FAA inspectors during the certification process were granted a pass, allowing Eclipse to save fixes for a later date. It states specifically that, regarding the Eclipse flight software, "the FAA issued a design certificate even though Eclipse's software supplier had only completed 23 of 65 required tests." Of deficiencies that remained unresolved upon the FAA's April 10, 2007, award of a production certificate to Eclipse, 13 today remain as unresolved, according to Scovel. Following the hearing, the FAA's position on the matter is clear: The Eclipse 500 aircraft are fully deserving of certification and completely safe.

AOPA Claims Victory On User Fees

... For now. AOPA has announced that a Sept. 23 bill passed by the House of Representatives extends the current taxes on fuel and airline tickets until April 2009. That means, according to AOPA, that "we can declare victory in the battle against user fees" and won't face the threat again until, maybe, April Fools' Day. The government has granted the FAA authority to spend $7.9 billion over the next six months to roughly match what appropriations the agency would likely have obtained through an actual funding bill, which the Sept. 23 legislation is not. BUT ... while the Senate quickly confirmed the House's bill, President Bush has yet to chime in with his approval. And, AOPA warns, neither of the presidential candidates who stand to inherit the user fee battle has specifically ruled out aviation user fees as a method of funding the FAA. Toward that end, AOPA is seeking on Nov. 4 "to return to power" those "friends in the House" who have fought against user fees so that it may start the fight anew, and in good company, with a new administration in 2009.

 
JA Air Center Announces First Installation of a Dual Garmin G600 PFD/MFD LCD Display
JA Air Center has installed the first Dual Garmin G600 PFD/MFD LCD display in a certified aircraft, an A36 Bonanza. The aircraft is also equipped with dual GNS530Ws, GDL69A XM Weather, GWX68 Radar, L-3 Skywatch, and WX500 Stormscope. The Garmin G600 combination PFD/MFD is designed to take the space of the basic six-pack and fully integrates all primary flight, navigation, terrain, traffic, and weather. For more information, go online.

Call JA Air Center at (800) 323-5966 to speak with a Garmin expert about the G600.
 
Other Ways to Get Off the Ground back to top 
 

Fuel-Free Powered Flight -- Solar Impulse Project Update

The project that hopes to ultimately send a manned aircraft around the world in nonstop flight utilizing solar power has reached the concrete phase through delivery of final first aircraft components. The first large components now exist for the yet unbuilt aircraft registered HB-SIA, and composite fuselage has run through stress tests including static flexion and torsion testing. Normal challenges of aircraft design -- ultra-light, ultra-robust construction -- are compounded in the Solar Impulse project and its more than 180-foot-long wing. "Anything that doesn't break is potentially too heavy," says project CEO Andre Borschberg. Anything too light obviously offers similarly project-ending consequences. The extreme combination of experimentation and computer simulation has so far stretched carbon sheet "just a few tenths of millimeters thick over lengths up to 20 meters" and challenged researchers to transform fragile solar panels into flexible wing surfaces.

HB-SIA will be the project's first prototype aircraft and it will offer a 61-meter solar-panel-coated wingspan. Its mission is to prove its construction technology and hopes remain that it could make a 36-hour flight in 2009 without the use of any fuel. Fifty specialists from six countries and roughly 100 outside advisers are providing brainpower for the project.

Rossy's Done It -- FusionMan Wings Across The Channel

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Following two weather delays, Yves Rossy, 49, Friday successfully flew across the English Channel from France to England strapped to a set of eight-foot, 120-pound carbon fiber wings on his back, powered by four kerosene-burning micro turbines carefully mounted beneath it. The flight from Calais to Dover followed the route traced by Louis Bleriot, who in 1909 won the honor of first person to cross the Channel in an aircraft -- a trip that took 37 minutes. Rossy's flight began at 8,000 feet upon departure from a Pilatus jump aircraft and covered the 22 miles in 9 minutes, 32 seconds, at speeds near 120 mph, according to The Guardian. Rossy had the benefit of a tailwind on his trek and so met Dover early with a bit of exuberant aerobatics. That was followed by parachute deployment and an otherwise harmless "face-in-the-dirt landing." Next in line for the adventurer are plans to fly over the Grand Canyon, take off from a standing position, and expand his cache of aerobatics.

The Pilatus served as Rossy's GPS en route, guiding him along while another aircraft relayed images captured from a helicopter that tracked his path through the air. Another helicopter was available for search and rescue, just in case. An excited Rossy spoke after the landing to offer his thanks to the many who supported his effort who he said crossed with him, if not under the wing.

 
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.
 
News Briefs back to top 
 

Helicopter Medevac Crash Kills Four

The eighth medical helicopter crash in the past 12 months took place in a suburban Washington park Sunday during fog and rain, killing four of five aboard and lifting the 12-month medevac helicopter death toll to near 30 for that period. The crew of the flight, conducted by the Maryland State Police, reported that it would divert to Andrews Air Force Base due to weather. That would have landed it about halfway between the accident site and Prince George's county hospital. The safety of medevac operations, which since 1990 has shown an increase in the rate of crashes, has earned the attention of the NTSB, which plans to hold a public hearing on the topic. Maryland's state-run program has now had just four fatal helicopter crashes over four decades, according to The Associated Press. Sunday's crash killed veteran pilot Stephen Bunker, 59; paramedic Mickey Lippy, 34; EMT Tanya Mallard, 39; and 18-year old Ashley Younker. Another 18-year-old female survived.

 
Stop by AOPA's NBAA Booth and Save 35% on Membership
Stop by AOPA's NBAA booth (#1815) and join at a 35% discount — a $48 savings for combined AOPA membership and AOPA Legal Services Plan (LSP) for ATP pilots. Already a member? Stop by, take the AOPA survey, and enter to win an Amazon Kindle, the revolutionary wireless reading device. For information on AOPA's benefits, visit online.
 
New on AVweb back to top 
 

RANS S-19

Randy Schlitter's latest design is purpose built for Light-Sport rules but intended to be one of the easiest-to-build kits around.

Click here to read this maintenance article.

AVmail: Sep. 29, 2008

Reader mail this week about GA support for hurricane relief, GA attitudes about Eclipse, praise for A Pilot's History and more.

Click here to read this week's letters to the editor.

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.

Read more.

 
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 
 

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.)

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.

 
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.
 
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 
 

Video of the Week: Oakland Tower Video of a Red Bull Air Races Fly-By

Recommend a Video | VOTW Archive

Here's an interesting perspective on the Red Bull Air Races, shot from inside the Oakland Control Tower! AVweb reader (and rabid video watcher) Robert Reid stumbled across this one on MySpace Video and send us a link. Well worth it for the controller reactions alone!


Fly-by on Oakland Airport Control Tower
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Don't forget to send us links to any interesting videos you find out there. If you're impressed by it, there's a good chance other AVweb readers will be too. And if we use a video you recommend on AVweb, we'll send out an official AVweb baseball cap as a "thank you."

AVWEB'S MONDAY PODCAST
Due to technical difficulties, we're skipping our usual Monday podcast, but look for bonus audio from IFR Refresher magazine on AVweb in the next couple of days.

 
Find Your Next Aircraft on ASO!
When you search for used aircraft on ASO, you get the most complete picture of the market available anywhere. View thousands of listings with detailed specs and photos or use ASO's advanced search tools to quickly find your next aircraft. Best of all, know that every ad is current and no time is wasted on stale listings. If you're ready for your next aircraft, it's ready for you — on ASO. Visit ASO.com today!
 
Your Favorite FBOs back to top 
 

FBO of the Week: Tunica Air Center (UTA, Tunica, MS)

Nominate an FBO | Rules | Tips | Questions | Winning FBOs

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Tunica Air Center at UTA in Tunica, Mississippi.

AVweb reader Steve Spinney did his research before a 600-mile flight and learned about the FBO online:

I started by checking out their web site and also called and asked a few questions on the phone. This place is building quite a reputation for rolling out the red carpet for their customers; big or small, they can do it all. The facility is as nice as the people that run it. ... One attendant even took my picture by the airplane for me. I base out of Fort Smith, AR and I have to say we have a first-class FBO with TacAir, but you can't get a hamburger with your fuel. The cafe at Tunica has a great burger and some sandwiches made with Boars Head Deli products. So fly to Tunica — there is lots of runway and amenities!

Mmm — Boar's Head! Thanks for the recommendation, Steve!

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!

 
New! Jeppesen Avionics Knowledge Library — Garmin G1000 IFR Training
The Jeppesen Garmin G1000 — IFR Procedures training is an advanced, extensive computer-based training program developed with Garmin teaching skills to master the operation of and confidently fly the G1000 in IFR conditions. Learn: How to pull up and fly instrument procedures; how to load and activate approaches including RNAV and GPS; all the new WAAS-enabled approaches; and how to perform course reversals, fly holding patterns, and execute missed approaches. Call Jeppesen at (303) 328-4274, or visit online for more information!
 
The Lighter Side of Flight back to top 
 

Short Final

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

Flying into New Orleans Lakefront, and approach had switched us over to tower. One controller worked both ground and tower frequencies. There was minimal radio chatter with other aircraft but what was there was worth hearing:

Tower:
"Cessna XXX, for future reference, the one with the yellow line down the center is a taxiway, and the one with the white line is a runway."

Tim Morrison
Houston, Texas

 
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.
 
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/.

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.

 
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:

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.

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