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Volume 14, Number 51a
December 15, 2008
Cessna Caravan
Introducing the perfect union of brains and brawn. With more than 10 million fleet hours under its heavy-lifting wings, the Cessna Caravan now has brains to match. The standard Garmin G1000® glass cockpit combined with the WAAS-certified GFC700 automated flight control system integrates all primary flight, engine and sensor data to provide intuitive, at-a-glance situational awareness and precise flight guidance and control. For complete information, go online.
Top News: Phenom Certs, Miramar Safety Concernsback to top 
Sponsor Announcement

Three days after getting the official nod from Brazilian aviation authorities, the FAA has certified Embraer's Phenom 100 entry-level jet. The paperwork was signed Friday and the first of the $3.6 million jets will be in customer hands within days. "We are thrilled to announce that the Phenom 100 is certified by the FAA, as planned, confirming all of the exceptional performance characteristics previously approved by ANAC [the FAA's Brazilian counterpart]," said Luís Carlos Affonso, Embraer Executive Vice President, Executive Jets. "U.S. certification validates the jet's design and its suitability for one of the most important business aviation markets." More...

Despite assurances from Marine Corps brass and politicians, there have been the virtually inevitable calls for the closure of Miramar Marine Corps Air Station following last week's crash of an F/A-18D in a residential area south of the base. A mother, grandmother and two young children were killed in one of the houses hit by the falling fighter. "The Marines are decent people, and it seems un-American to gripe about them during wartime," area resident Sally Marks told the San Diego Union Tribune "But having hundreds of helicopters and jets in the middle of an urban area is a recipe for discord and disaster," she said. According to the newspaper, some residents believe the base should be relocated to a less populated area, likely inland in the desert, but in some ways that would defeat the purpose Miramar was serving in the tragedy that unfolded last Monday. More...

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 December 31, 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.
Fighting the Gloomback to top 

With Boeing, Textron, Cessna, Cirrus, Piper and Mooney either cutting back workers, hours, or operations, it's hard to see beyond the recession to a time when skilled aviation personnel will be sorely needed, but advocates say that day is coming ... maybe sooner than you think. The trick is that the predicted drought isn't the result of an economic boom or bust, but has to do with a generational shift. "The aerospace and defense industry does not have nearly enough skilled workers, especially engineers, to replace the ones approaching retirement," according to an ABC, San Francisco, report. U.S. News Friday expanded that argument to include pilots, stating in its "Best Careers" section that the outlook for employment of aircraft pilots and flight engineers is expected to grow 13 percent through 2016, and keep pace with the average growth for occupations on the whole. The foundation of that article hinges on information provided by a publication by the Bureau of Labor Statistics that appears to have been collected prior to 2006 but, pilot retirements have long been expected by many industry analysts to be one driving force for a shift in supply and demand. Meanwhile, a recent article published by the Hartford Courant states that at least one flight school in the northeast "has seen an increase in demand for its services, particularly flying lessons" currently and in spite of the economic downturn. However, with that increase has come a shift. "There's been an increase in students over 50," the article states. No one should expect those new pilots to be seeking careers in the cockpit, so theoretically those future jobs created through airline restructuring, the expansion of regional services, the economics of smaller aircraft and air-taxi travel and the expansion of global shipping are all expected to contribute to demand. But there are some oddities in the numbers. More...

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.
The Changing Face of Flyingback to top 

At JFK, Newark and LaGuardia, general aviation pilots should as of December 9, 2008, expect to be required to reserve a slot if they plan to come or go during certain parts of the day -- that's much like similar requirements at National and O'Hare, but with at least one new twist. First, the reservation requirement for the New York/New Jersey airports spreads the requirement to both arriving and departing IFR and VFR traffic. (Slot reservations at National and O'Hare are required for IFR flights, only.) Second, when AVweb filed this report on December 12, reservation requirements at both Newark and JFK were listed online by the FAA as "suspended until further advised," ... but that is likely a reflection of a separate slot auction proposal that has been put on hold by a court of appeals. That proposal, according to AOPA, would not affect general aviation operations. AOPA's written objections to the new rules have resulted in assurances that the FAA will work with pilots, to the extent that's possible, to accommodate their operations. Failing that, pilots who need a waiver can direct their concerns by phone to the Air Traffic Control System Command Center's airport reservation office, at 703-904-4452. Operators determined to work within the system can try to take advantage of electronic reservations. For the ones currently in effect, there are parameters. More...

Canada will be closed to most U.S. light aircraft within about two years after Transport Canada affirmed its decision to make 406-MHz emergency locator transmitters mandatory on everything but gliders, balloons, ultralights and a handful of special-use aircraft. The requirement extends to all foreign-registered aircraft and includes those used for flights that begin and end in the U.S. but overfly Canadian territory, like the busy routes between the northern Midwest and eastern states, according to an e-mail sent to Canadian Owners and Pilots Association members by President Kevin Psutka last week. "We are at the end of a long battle to bring common sense to this issue," Psutka wrote. "Common sense has not prevailed." Psutka attended a meeting with stakeholders on the issue last week. Transport Canada, and the Canadian military, which handles most search and rescue operations in Canada, see the switch as necessary because search and rescue satellites will stop monitoring 121.5 MHz, the frequency used by most existing ELTs, as of Feb. 1, 2009. Of course, Psutka's main focus has been on the expense and inconvenience (not to mention logistical challenge) of equipping thousands of Canadian GA aircraft with the $1,000 (plus installation) devices. COPA believes better technology is available but being ignored in the rule. But he said the rule will also affect thousands of U.S.-based aircraft owners who plan to fly to Canada. The FAA is not planning to mandate 406-MHz ELTs and it's doubtful many American owners will voluntarily equip just so they can take a flying vacation in Canada. More...

Do You Have Enough Life Insurance?
According to LIMRA International, a leading industry research firm, 68 million adult Americans have no life insurance. Those who own life insurance have an average of four times their annual income in coverage, considerably less than most experts recommend. Pilot Insurance Center specializes in providing pilots — from student to ATP — with insurance planning at an affordable rate. A+ Rated Carriers – No Aviation Exclusions – Quick and Easy Application Process. Call PIC at 1 (800) 380-8376 or visit online.
From Earth to the Stars and Back Againback to top 

photos by Robert Kirchner
Click for more photos
The San Diego Air and Space Museum honored Frank Borman, James Lovell Jr. and William Anders for the milestones they achieved as the first humans to travel to the moon and back in a capsule the size of a Volkswagen front seat. It was a historic evening that allowed a sold-out crowd of guests to mingle with numerous astronauts and NASA dignitaries; see students receive awards from the Ford Motor Co. for their Green Energy Ideas; hear the Apollo mission's technical background from Glynn Lunney, NASA Flight Director; listen to Borman's, Lovell's and Anders' recollections woven with humorous anecdotes; and share their unique perspective on Earth and its place in the universe. More...

JA Air Center, Your Source for the New Garmin GPSMap 696
JA Air Center is YOUR source for Garmin equipment, including the new GPSMap 696 with Victor Airways, Jet Routes, XM Weather, Terrain, AOPA Airport Guide, and Safe Taxi. JA Air purchases used GPS units, avionics, and aircraft.

JA Air Center is now open in Sugar Grove, IL (KARR) providing the finest avionics installations, turbine/piston maintenance, avionics/instrument service, mail order, and aircraft sales. Call (800) 323-5966, or click for more information.
'Tis the Season for Helping Othersback to top 

CarolAnn Garratt and Carol Foy went around the world in a Mooney, shattered a speed record in doing so and have raised more than $145,000 to fight a fatal disease. Not a bad week's work. The pilots returned to Orlando, Fla., last Thursday morning, eight days and change after leaving on a westward circumnavigation that took them through just eight fuel and rest stops. In doing so, they more than doubled the average speed of the standing record for their aircraft's weight class (final calculations are still being done). But Garratt told AVweb in a podcast interview that the most important effect of the Dash for Cash is to raise awareness and money for research into Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), sometimes referred to as Lou Gehrig's disease for the famous baseball player who died from it. More...

California brought together local fire bomber crews, private pilots, Marines and local residents and resulted in a seven-ton Marine truck full of toys destined for those children less fortunate. The Toys For Tots drive is an annual Marine Corps event in the area and was organized this year at Ramona Airport northeast of San Diego by airport manager Bo Donovan. In issuing his invitation, Donovan had requested that pilots spread the word at schools, churches, and with "everyone you see, everywhere you go." Near the end of the invitation Donovan finished with a flourish of local pride with, "Let's show this community just how BIG our hearts are at Ramona Airport." To add to the attraction Donovan requested that one local pilot bring his Stinson and another to park his Mustang out on the ramp. The vehicles, he said, would be matched with Marine Corps hardware and flanked by Marines in their Dress Blues. Adding to the good cheer, volunteers would manage a cookout on the ramp. That was the call, and this past Saturday, the community answered. At Ramona, the Marines' truck was so overstuffed with new toys that one of the men in blue had to find another ride home. According to one local pilot, "I think this day is what I'll remember about Christmas this year ... and what I'll always love about this airport. I can't imagine it gets better than this!" But, in fact, it does get better. 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.
New on AVwebback to top 

Last week's F/A-18 crash hit close to home for video editor Glenn Pew, in more ways than one. Glenn lives physically close to the site of the accident, but he spent hours poring over still photos and watching television coverage to put together a video report for AVweb. Now, on the AVweb Insider blog, he wrestles with the notion of responsibility when our tax dollars contribute to tragedy. More...

Looking for a gift for yourself or your pilot friends? AVweb can help! Video editor Glenn Pew has put together our most useful product overviews for you to peruse and get ideas. If you see something you like in one of these videos, visit our sponsors and get your shopping done online. Stay informed; stay entertained. Happy holidays from your team at AVweb. (Click through a link to the videos.) More...

Last week, we treated you to high-powered, low-footprint maneuvers centered around an aircraft carrier. This week, we're at the opposite end of the spectrum, watching as a bush plane (a Maule M4-220C) goes through its paces in the wide open spaces of the Lone Star State. (Click through to watch.) More...

Aeromedix Holiday Specials
Aeromedix offers great holiday presents for pilots, presents that make them safe. Aeromedix holiday specials include: a complimentary Tuf Cloth with purchase of Doug Ritter knives; a complimentary carrying case with a complete Portable Oxygen System; and 20% off any Retract-a-Bit tool (while supplies last). Go online to Aeromedix for these and many more products and specials.
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

A couple of weeks ago, we talked to Carol Ann Garratt as she and fellow pilot Carol Foy were about to embark on the trip of a lifetime. AVweb's Russ Niles caught up with Garratt over the weekend to talk about the successful conclusion of their Dash for Cash to raise funds for ALS research. More...

An F/A-18 Hornet crashed about 9,000 feet shy of Runway 06L at MCAS Miramar, in a residential neighborhood near San Diego, California, Monday December 8, 2008 at approximately 11:59 a.m. local time. This initial report was published by Glenn Pew the day of the crash with the information available at that time. (Click through to watch.) More...

Avidyne has upgraded its Entegra Flight Deck. Join us as we have a look, courtesy of Paul Bertorelli and Glenn Pew. (Click through to watch.) More...

Win This Plane! Last Chance to Win — Enter by December 31st
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.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Pecos Air Center at KPEQ in Pecos, Texas.

AVweb reader Jeffrey B. Chipetine called the FBO "a terrific stop on the way home to New York from California":

[I] called in on Unicom (45 miles out from 13.5K) as dark was falling fast. Was answered immediately and was told they'd be open when we arrived. Was offered a handshake, help with bags, tie-down assistance, and a courtesy car before I could say "thank you." ... These folks know how to make weary travelers feel welcome and wanted. Add me to the list of Pecos Air Center fans.

Didn't realize we were keeping the list, Jeffrey, but we've pinned it to the virtual AVweb bulletin board and added your name!

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!


Great Holiday Gift
Clear Left, I'll Have the Chicken: An Airline Captain Looks at Life, by Kevin Garrison. What people are saying: "I have spent years and billions of dollars getting into space, only to find that Kevin already is" — NASA spokesperson. "I think he was trying to be funny" — Mark Twain.

Available online for only $10.95.
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You!back to top 


Letter of the Week: Arctic Rescue

I am glad both men are alive after their ditching when they lost both engines. However,I have to ask the following questions about their decision-making/preparation for this flight:

  • no PLB attached to their persons?
  • no survival vest on their persons?
  • no sat phone on their persons?

I can't believe these two did not have these survival tools. The PLB alone would have made this a short inconveinence and not the life-theatening situation it became.

Prepare like your life depends on it, because it does.

Herman Bloomberg

Click through to read the rest of this week's letters.


Our sister magazine, Aviation Consumer, wants your opinion on aircraft maintenance. If you'd like to participate, click here to complete a short, confidential survey.

(The results will be used in an upcoming Aviation Consumer article on managing your maintenance. 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...

Find an Unusual Gift for Any Pilot and All Aviation Enthusiasts
Build A Plane announces its annual fund-raising eBay auction. For sale: lunch with New Piper CEO James Bass, Patty Wagstaff's flight suit, a B-25 bomber ride, Eclipse 500 jet stick time, a Honeywell AV8OR MFD, a 1949 A35 Beechcraft Bonanza, and so much more. Items start as low as a few dollars. All sales will benefit the Build A Plane program. Complete information at BuildAPlane.org.
The Lighter Side of Flightback to top 

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

Going from Virginia to Houston, Texas, I was diverting north of Memphis, Tennessee to get around a big storm front which was moving across the country. I planned a fuel stop at Jackson, Tennessee (MKL) and was on the back side of the front with just light rain ahead of me. As always, I tried to call with a DTN screen in front of me for the big picture. This occurred on the phone during a weather briefing with FSS:

"N12345, IFR flight plan: MKL, PBF, direct HOU. (West, then southwest.)"

"O.K. Lots of weather. Big storms ahead of you."

"Well, I'm looking at the DTN screen, and the radar shows those storms to be behind me with just light rain and then improving weather."

"Hmmm — you're right; storms behind you."

I was thinking, "Oh, boy, just what I need — a dyslexic weather briefer."

The rest of the trip went well ... .

Ed Hendee
Houston, Texas


Economic Challenges Call for Proven Advertising Results — AVweb Delivers Results
Since 1995, AVweb has been the most comprehensive no-cost aviation site online. Advertisers reach over 240,000 pilots, aircraft owners, and aviation professionals via a unique and effective combination of newsletter text messages and web site banner ads. Links send readers directly to advertisers' web sites for instant information. Click now for details on AVweb's cost-effective programs.
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

Scott Simmons

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.