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AIRPORT SECURITY LIST MISLEADING EAA says it's pressuring the
Transportation Security Administration to lift the "shroud of mystery"
on its implementation of new security requirements for GA pilots at
commercial airports after an attempt at clarity misfired last week. On
Wednesday, EAA published a list of 454 airports supplied by the TSA that
have commercial service and would theoretically be subject to directive
#1542-04-08G (SD-8G). AVweb wrote a story and carried a link to
the list. However, representatives of some of the airports on that list
were surprised (and annoyed) to see themselves on the list. EAA says
some airports have been able to avoid implementation of the rule,
because they've created their own security plan that meets TSA
requirements. That's created inconsistent regulation and added to the
frustration over the security plan, which EAA says the TSA is reluctant
to provide details about. More...
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Sometimes the difference between being
in the right place at the right time and the opposite is a matter of a
few feet and, miraculously, everyone involved came out of this one on
the happy side of that equation. Dustin Koehler and his father were
videotaping floatplanes taking off from Lake Spenard in Anchorage June 7
when something went wrong in the takeoff run of a de Havilland Beaver.
Happily, Koehler, who kept the camera rolling throughout the sequence
and the two adults, two children and two dogs on the Beaver were unhurt
after the plane went over Koehler (he estimates the wing passed five
feet over him) and hit rising ground less than 100 feet behind him.
Ironically, the plane came to rest next to the the Alaska State
Department of Transportation building. The unidentified pilot reportedly told the NTSB that a gust of wind knocked
the aircraft off course and the video practically begs armchair analysts
to dissect the sequence. There's even a strategically placed windsock.
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NTSB hearings that last week focussed
on the Jan. 15 crash of US Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson have
generated potential actions -- from developing on-aircraft anti-bird
technology to rounding up and wiping out thousands of Canada Geese. At
the hearings, Airbus test pilots supported Captain Sullenberger's
decision to take the flight to the river instead of trying to make
LaGuardia or Teterboro. Airbus' fly by wire system was praised for
allowing Sullenberger to maintain the best airspeed for the ditching
simply by holding the joystick fully aft and letting the computers do
the work of not stalling the aircraft while he maintained wings level.
The hearings also produced a rather compelling NTSB
video that mates animation with ATC audio and CVR content (as text).
A board member's call for more research into onboard bird-repellant or
bird-deterrent technologies is supported by at least one study, which
found that aircraft equipped with pulsed landing lights suffered fewer
bird strikes. That study was conducted by Qantas and Precision Flight --
a vendor for a pulse light system. Tests conducted in 2004 by the U.S.
Agriculture Department were less definitive, but further research
(specifically, into flash frequency and light wavelengths) may be
encouraged by the NTSB. That said, New York City in a statement Friday
announced a more direct approach to "remove and dispose of" some 2,000
Canada geese residing in the LaGuardia area from mid-June to August.
FRANCE WRECKAGE RECOVERY TECHNOLOGY In searching vast
stretches of ocean from the surface to its mountainous floor some 20,000
feet below, the technology that determines the area of the search may
prove as important as that used to search it. A French nuclear
submarine, the attack sub Emeraude, arrived off the coast of Brazil
Wednesday to join the search for the remains of Air France Flight 447
and the aircraft's cockpit voice and flight data recorders. Meanwhile,
U.S. Coast Guard search-and-rescue experts are applying technology in
Portsmout, Va., to help identify those areas of ocean to which winds and
currents may have delivered wreckage, based on the time of discovery and
location of wreckage already found. The software also uses "reverse
drift" technology to help determine where the items may have initially
impacted the ocean. With those sets of information search areas are
mapped based on their probability of containing debris. The submarine
will be working with a mini-sub, the Nautile, which can descend to the
ocean floor and was a key tool while searching for the Titanic. It will
also be aided by U.S. underwater audio devices that authorities say can
pick up signals generated from a depth of 20,000 feet. The Emeraude is
expected to cover 13 square miles per day and investigators stipulate
that due to complexities of the ocean floor in the search area, they're
going to need a lot of luck. More...
Business Aviation Will Help
Companies Not Only Survive
But Prosper During the Current Financial Crisis
To be your most productive, and your most efficient, you must keep
flying. Because in so doing, you will emerge from these times even
stronger than before. And you will replace the uncertainty that
surrounds many, with the confidence and courage to light the way for
CAUSE OF IN-FLIGHT AIRBUS A330 COCKPIT FIRE? A loud bang and
a bright flash of white flame greeted the pilots of a Jetstar Airbus
A330-200 carrying 203 passengers and crew out of Osaka, Japan, for the
Gold Coast, Australia, Thursday as it passed four hours en route 37,000
feet over the Pacific. The cockpit crew donned masks as fumes and smoke
filled the flight deck and flames rose near the base of the co-pilot's
windscreen. Aside from pilot and co-pilot, two trainees were in the
cockpit, one of whom passed forward a fire extinguisher that the
co-pilot used to douse the flames. After an estimated 50 seconds the
fire appeared to be out and the aircraft was about 20 minutes from Guam,
where the crew put down safely after a relatively normal descent.
Jetstar cited an electrical connection in a windscreen heater element as
the fire's apparent ignition point, according to The Australian, but the
Australian Safety Bureau has yet to determine the cause. According to a
spokesman for Jetstar, "This is quite a new aircraft, well maintained
and the part was factory fitted." Captain Ray Banfield told passengers
upon landing, "Never in all my years of flying commercial aircraft had I
seen anything like it," according to The Daily Telegraph.
it happened almost a year ago, the photos are just making the rounds of
the Internet now and the lesson they carry are timeless. This almost-new
Cessna 182 was destroyed last September at Munising, Mich., after
gasoline in a line trimmer being carried on board ignited. According to
the NTSB report the pilot put the weed whacker on the
back seat for a short and uneventful flight but that all changed on
arrival at Munising. More...
EAA AirVenture Oshkosh
The World's Greatest Aviation Celebration July 27 - August 2 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin
This year is too BIG to miss. Literally. Witness the world's
largest airliner Airbus A380 overtaking AeroShell Square;
see the first world public debut of Virgin Galactic's WhiteKnightTwo;
attend appearances by the U.S. Airways Flight 1549 cockpit crew; and
enjoy performances by the Doobie Brothers on opening day and comedian
Jeff Dunham Saturday night. This is your last chance to save! Buy
your tickets online by June 15 and
save $2 on every daily ticket and $5 on every weekly ticket.
The Red Bull
Air Race's last stop in North America for 2009 took place last weekend
on the Detroit River between Windsor, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan.
British pilot Paul Bonhomme narrowly took home the first-place trophy,
narrowly beating out Austrian Hannes Arch by 1.15 seconds in the final
round. The Red Bull Air Race World Series continues on with their next
stop in Budapest, Hungary on August 19. More...
CHEROKEE COLLIDE, ALL SURVIVE Well, we can imagine the
paperwork on this one, but thankfully there won't be any obituaries.
Amazingly, no one was killed when a sport utility vehicle and a Piper
Cherokee collided head-on on a country road near Johannesburg, South
Africa last Sunday. According to The Herald Sun (quoting the South African Times,
whose site wasn't taking inquiries Thursday) the three people in the SUV
weren't hurt but the pilot and passenger in the Cherokee were taken to
hospital with serious injuries, although they're reportedly doing well
now. The Cherokee had just taken off, ran into trouble and the pilot
obviously looked for the best stretch of pavement. Unfortunately, the
SUV driver had the same idea. More...
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AERONAUTICAL'S MANUFACTURING MILESTONE Developer of the
all-carbon-composite, GE Honda HF 120 fanjet powered, nine-passenger
S.40 Freedom, Spectrum Aeronautical said last week that its "Fuselage
Manufacturing Demonstrator" (FMD) means it can deliver a revolutionary
40% weight savings over similar aluminum aircraft. The FMD is a
full-scale, one-piece part made of co-cured composites in a proprietary
process that joins major structural components "at the molecular level,"
according to the company. The process significantly reduces the need for
the adhesive bonding required by many other composite fabrication
processes and, being composite, eliminates nearly all secondary
fasteners from the fuselage structure. That, says Spectrum, saves
manufacturing time and airframe weight and helps put the company's
performance goals to "cut fuel consumption by as much as half that of
comparably sized metal aircraft" within reach. Using the King Air and
Cessna Citation XLS as benchmarks, the company has said its Freedom will
burn half the fuel of the King Air while providing performance that
closely matches the XLS. The Freedom is designed to carry a pilot and
nine passengers in a six-foot cabin to cruise at altitudes up to 45,000
feet at speeds up to 442 knots and a range of 2,000 nautical miles.
TEACHERS TO GO WEIGHTLESS FOR EDUCATION Northrop Grumman is
accepting applications from educators who can earn a 2009 Weightless
Flight of Discovery to depart from three remaining cities on this year's
tour. This is the fourth consecutive year that Northrop Grumman has
partnered with Zero-G Corporation to offer the weightless flights. The
annual program for professional development provides teachers with an
opportunity "to prepare for and participate in micro- and zero-gravity
flights to test Newton's Laws of Motion," according to a Northrop
Grumman press release. Selected teachers are meant to work with their
classes in advance of the flight to devise experiments that the teacher
will perform while aloft. It's then expected that the teacher will
return to the classroom with their experiences where they will translate
those experiences into increased enthusiasm among their middle-school
students -- specifically in subjects like science and math. The United
States is experiencing a shortage of college graduates in science,
technology, engineering and mathematics, according to program supporters
who hope the results of such flights will help turn the tide. At the
time AVweb went to press, Northrop Grumman had openings for
flights from three cities, details after the jump. More...
THE FLY ... Paris Air Show opens today... Snowbirds
grounded by ejection seat fault... 172 shot in West Virginia.
Share Your Thoughts on
What's important to you when choosing an aviation headset? Please take a
few moments to complete an online survey. Help influence the headset
Has anyone suggested that transient pilots be offered a
national pass so they may use all of the airports listed to alleviate
this bottleneck to pilots and airport officials? By "national pass," I
mean the individual pilot would be submitted to a background check,
including fingerprinting, and if the pilot passed, he or she would be
issued a document to come and go at will. I am a corporate pilot who has
to go to many different airports, and to be required to get the ID
badges they mention seems ridiculous.
I did the procedure to gain
access to the "DC 3" airports, and it seems like the right idea to solve
Click through to read
the rest of this week's letters.
WEIGHS IN WITH PROMISING DEVELOPMENT ON THE S.40
FREEDOM Spectrum Aeronautical's S.40 Freedom is one step
closer making the leap from on-paper concept jet to lightweight
composite reality. Spectrum chairman Linden Blue sat down with us
to explain how the company's Fuselage Manufacturing Demonstrator (FMD)
proves the concept and sets the stage for a projected 40% weight savings
over similar aircraft designs. More...
The New Meridian G1000
The new Meridian G1000 with Garmin G1000 avionics and GFC 700
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than any comparable six-place turbine-powered aircraft. With a panel as
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Q: What's the Difference
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SAMM Mike Busch and his team of seasoned maintenance professionals are
saving their aircraft-owner clients thousands of dollars a year in parts
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professional maintenance management for owner-flown singles and twins.
Learn how they do it.
VIDEO: TV NEWS COPTERS MADE AFFORDABLE Thanks to seismic shifts in the news
business, many local television outlets can no longer afford their own
turbine-powered eye-in-the-sky. As a result, Robinson is doing a brisk
business selling its R44-based ENG camera ship. AVweb visited
Robinson in Torrance, California for a closer look. More...
Career CFIs Anthony Cirincione and Scott Felton reveal the
techniques world-class instructors use to stand out among the best. Over
24 years, they have developed their skills and practice what they
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"FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Lane Aviation at CMH in Columbus,
Apparently AVweb reader Josh Johnson didn't
get much exercise on his visit to Lane, but he seemed pretty happy with
We were in town for two
days of business meetings in a nearby hotel. Immediately after landing,
we were met at the door of our airplane by a friendly line guy ... . We
were planning to take the hotel bus to our hotel; however, the line guy
insisted on taking us there himself! He also said that they would gladly
pick us up after our meeting and drop us off at the plane. We arrived
for departure and found our airplane a decent walk across the ramp, [but
once again] the line guy dropped us off at the door to the FBO to use
the restrooms and file our flight plans. When we walked out to go back
to the plane, he motioned us to get back in the van for a ride back to
our plane! Excellent!
By the way, we arrived in a Cessna 172,
and they were taking care of a large jet for a celebrity at the time we
arrived. We certainly felt special getting such excellent
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