The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded,
Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's
2003 TAKES FLIGHT
The biggest business aviation event of the year kicked off with lots of
news and hoopla, as The National Business Aviation Association's (NBAA)
56th Annual Meeting & Convention opened its doors on Tuesday. While last
year's exhibitors and attendees displayed residual uneasiness a year
after 9/11 and amidst a struggling market, the mood at this year's show
was much more optimistic. Several major announcements were made at the
show, which opened to a record number of exhibitor and static-aircraft
displays. The 1,000 exhibitors, 75 informational sessions and 111
aircraft on static display at Orlando Executive Airport made for an
impressive display of corporate aviation's marketing muscle.
NAMES, BIGGER PLANES...
FAA Administrator Marion Blakey and Congressman John L. Mica both
expressed frustration with the National Air Traffic Controllers
Association's ongoing battle with the contract-towers issue, which
Blakey characterized as a "non-issue." Mica indicated the debate is
holding up the pending FAA Reauthorization Bill, which among other
things provides $100 million for the general aviation post-9/11
recovery. Bombardier Aerospace offered its biggest headline this year:
the official launch of the Ultra-Long Range Global Express XRS business
jet. The $45.3 million jet will feature improved performance over its
predecessor and offer an amazing 6,500-nm range at .82 Mach. Claiming
the jet "takes the outstanding performance of the Bombardier Global
Express even further," Bombardier will eventually replace the current
Global Express design with the XRS. More...
...A FIRST FOR EXTRA, AND SAFIRE REACHES OUT
Safire Aircraft has kept a
low profile, as it transitioned from the S-26 program to the six-seat Safire Jet design
and set up shop in Opa Locka, Fla., and acquired 300 orders. At the
show, company officials announced that
the Williams F-J33 engine -- currently undergoing certification -- will
provide 1,530 pounds of thrust to move the $1.395 million jet along at
an undisclosed clip. The first Safire Jet flight-test aircraft is
planned to fly in the first quarter of 2004. Extra Aircraft took things
a step further. Walter Extra himself flew the brand-new EA-500 to the
convention's static-display area at Orlando Executive Airport. This
marks the first public viewing of the new high-wing executive aircraft
and a first for Extra since its reorganization. More...
HEADSETS ARE FIRST TO: Give you over 30 hours of battery life on
just two AA batteries; Give you intelligent auto shut-off; Integrate a
music/cell phone jack conveniently located on the control box; and Offer
customers a trade-UP program so they can always keep current with the
best LightSPEED products and accessories. Thousands already know what
headsets are first...LightSPEED at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/litspeed
FUTURE IS IT?
The FAA is not the only outfit around to announce its vision of the
aviation future, and this week The Boyd Group, of Evergreen, Colo., held
its annual forecast conference, in Nashville, Tenn., and on several
points offered views that differ from the FAA's ideas. For starters,
aviation consultant Michael Boyd predicted far less passenger growth
than the FAA, the New
York Times reported on Tuesday. The FAA said in
March that passengers will return to 2000 levels by 2006, but Boyd
forecast it will take until 2008. Boyd also predicted sharp growth in
secondary airports near major cities, the Times said, saying passenger
traffic at Long Beach, Calif., will increase five times over 2000 levels
by 2008. More...
TIME WILL TELL
Boyd also said that consumer demands for more comfort and jetway
boarding will flatten the demand for smaller regional jets in favor of
those that seat 100 and up, and code-share alliances among the major
airlines will continue to grow. Another analyst at the conference, Jamie
Baker of J. P. Morgan, said that by 2006 at least 40 percent of the
domestic airline traffic will be handled by discount airlines like
Southwest and JetBlue, the Times reported. Boyd, according to the Dallas
Business Journal, accurately forecast the financial woes of Denver
International Airport, and earlier this year predicted Dallas/Fort Worth
Airport will be busier than O'Hare International Airport by 2012.
SUGGESTS "ESPECIALLY DILIGENT INSPECTIONS" FOR 150S AND 152S
When the FAA recently published an "Airworthiness Concern
Sheet" noting that cracks have been found in the vertical fin
attachment brackets of some Cessna 150- and 152-series airplanes, it
requested input from type clubs and pilot groups by October 22. This
week, a Cessna 150-152 type
club in California published online its analysis of the concerns,
along with its recommendations to owners. "We believe the FAA will wait
for Cessna to issue a forthcoming Service Bulletin," the group says at
its Web site, and expects "inspections will [likely] become mandatory
via a new Airworthiness Directive in 2004." Meanwhile, the group
suggests, "We recommend that you and your mechanic make an especially
diligent inspection of these parts at the next service interval."
RESCUES GROUNDED TEDDY BEAR PROJECT
Airlines declined to take aboard a teddy bear that was part of a
school geography project in Mason City, Iowa, pilot Richard Rogers read
about it and was not happy. "The kids had gone to the airport all
excited, and went home real disappointed," he told AVweb on Tuesday.
That didn't sit well with Rogers, who flies for Pinnacle Food Group in
Des Moines, so he tracked down schoolteacher Kelli Moorehead and
proposed an alternate plan. Rogers offered to give Ted a lift in the
co-pilot seat of his company's CJ2. Ted could travel in style and then
relax in the friendly care of FBO staffers till they found him another
spot with GA and corporate pilots. "They didn't realize that GA even
existed," Rogers told AVweb. "They were thinking of giving the bear to a
truck driver, but this is so much better." More...
BIT OF RELIEF FOR DC ADIZ FLIERS
The FAA's tight grip on the huge chunk of airspace that is the
Baltimore-Washington Air Defense Identification Zone is beginning to
loosen, if only slightly. AOPA
said this week that after more than six months of negotiating, the
TSA and FAA and a long list of D.C. security officials have agreed to a
60-day test that will ease restrictions on operations at about a dozen
GA airports near the rim of the ADIZ. "AOPA still believes that the ADIZ
has outlived its intent and would prefer to see it lifted entirely,"
said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "But until that happens, this should
make operations at the edges of the ADIZ a little less complicated."
GOING AT BOEING, BUT AIRBUS BUSTLES
Boeing Co. last week announced
its third-quarter deliveries, and said it shipped 210 jets in the
first nine months of this year. The projected total of 280 jets for 2003
represents an eight-year low for Boeing. Airbus says it expects to ship 300 jets
this year, which would place the European consortium ahead of Boeing for
the first time ever. Meanwhile, the Associated
Press reported this week that three 777s have made emergency
landings this year after their windshields cracked when wiring to their
heaters shorted out. In at least one of the incidents, the wiring
briefly caught on fire. Boeing has told airlines to tighten the wire
connections, the AP said, and is developing circuit breakers that should
prevent the problem from recurring. More...
SAYS MUSTANG TROTTING ON TRACK
Cessna is naturally in force at the NBAA shindig in Orlando this week,
and on Monday made the most of its chance to hype the latest news about
its much-anticipated Citation
Mustang entry-level six-seat bizjet. The jet should be ready for
type certification in the third quarter of 2006, with first customer
deliveries in the fourth quarter of 2006, Cessna said in a news release.
About 300 of the jets have already been ordered, according to Bloomberg
News. High-speed and low-speed wind-tunnel tests were completed that
verified the airframe design, Cessna added. The Mustang will be
certified as a FAR Part 23 aircraft, with a cruise speed of 340 knots at
35,000 feet, and a maximum operating altitude of 41,000 feet.
This past Sunday New York City's Hudson River Park was assaulted by 35
teams of amateur "aircraft" builders competing for a $7,500 "pilot's
training course or cash equivalent" grand prize. An impressive precision
parachute jump originated from a helicopter and ended atop the
event's floating 30-foot-wide launch pad to open the event. Competitors
then began pushing their often-absurd human-powered craft (one was a giant paper
airplane) off the end of the 25-feet-above-river-level launch with
the help of a 10- to 15-knot tailwind. It was all part of an otherwise
shameless promotion of Red Bull energy drink dubbed Flugtag
New York, 2003. The av-savvy may have most enjoyed the winning team's
39-foot flight, but there was no lack of entertainment for diving fans,
WIN THE GETAWAY OF
THE CENTURY! AVweb and Pilot Getaways magazine have joined with
BuyItWright.com to bring you the Getaway of the Century sweepstakes. The
lucky winner will be a part of the Kitty Hawk activities on December 17.
Other prizes include special commemorative watches and more. Enter the
sweepstakes, secure VIP events seating, and purchase official Wright
products at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/100g
A CIRRUS...OR A DIAMOND?
Our sister publication, Aviation Consumer, is preparing a customer
satisfaction survey on the Cirrus SR20 and Diamond DA40 Star. If you own
either and would like to participate, contact the editor at
Three British WWII pilots are recovering after ditching their
A 1946 Stinson crashed into a house in Okla. Sunday, no
Richard Abruzzo, Carol Rymer-Davis won Albuquerque Gas
The pilots of Operation Migration are leading 16
cranes to Florida...
Carter Aviation postponed November attempt to
break the Mu-1 barrier.
Congratulations and an AVweb hat go out to David Bishop, this week's
AVscoop winner. Submit news tips via email to email@example.com.
Rules and information are at http://www.avweb.com/contact/newstips.html.
ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
Quiz #73 -- IFR
Charts And Procedures For All Pilots
Rumor has it that some
pilots fly inside clouds. Yikes! How can they see the interstate
highways? VFR pilots should have at least a passing acquaintance with
IFR procedures if only to know where IFR traffic might appear. All
instrument-rated flyers could use the occasional brush-up on instrument
terms and procedures.
GETTING THE MOST
OUT OF THE AIRCRAFT IN YOUR CLUB? TimeSync's ScheduleMaster
online aircraft scheduling service offers advanced features such as
standby scheduling and notification of cancellations. ScheduleMaster
helps your club improve aircraft utilization and will make your members
happy. Add AccontMaster, an integrated billing system that works with
Peachtree and QuickBooks. For a no-obligation online demonstration go to
PICTURE OF THE WEEK...
We received over 100 pictures last week. Congratulations to this week's
winner, Al Schleif, of Poway, Calif. His picture titled "Kinetic Energy"
shows the beauty of a Pitts, even when parked on the ramp. While many
aerobatic aircraft have crowded the marketplace, nothing quite captures
the look of this awesome biplane. Great picture, Al! Your AVweb hat is
on the way. To check out the winning picture, or to enter next week's
contest, go to http://www.avweb.com/potw
QUESTION OF THE WEEK...
We received over 300 responses to our question last week on the
publics support of general aviation GA). Approaching half (44
percent) of those responding felt many people dont understand the
many benefits GA offers the community, while 309 percent said general
aviation is perceived as an annoyance. Only 1 percent indicated the
public supports GA and clearly understands how beneficial this segment
of the industry is.
To check out the complete results go to http://www.avweb.com/qotw
week we would like to know your thoughts on business aviations
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