AVwebFlash - Volume 15, Number 27b

July 9, 2009

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
Lightspeed Invites You to Celebrate Aviation
... at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2009 (July 27 - August 2, Oshkosh, WI). Come visit our tent outside Hanger B for demos, t-shirts, show specials, free refreshments, video presentations, and more. Click here to visit Lightspeed online.
Top News: Power Plants of Tomorrow back to top 

Airplane Launches On Fuel-Cell Power

This Tuesday, the Antares DLR-H2 took off at Hamburg Airport in Germany using only power from fuel cells, a feat that its builders say is a first for a piloted aircraft. The motorglider, built by the German Aerospace Center, flies with zero carbon-dioxide emissions and is much quieter than similar aircraft. "This motorglider achieves new quality standards in the field of high-efficiency, zero-emission energy conversion and clearly demonstrates the progress that has been made in fuel-cell technology," the Aerospace Center said in a news release. The DLR-H2 is based on the Antares 20E motorglider, and has a wingspan of 66 feet. With its fuel-cell propulsion system, the aircraft can stay aloft for five hours and reach speeds of about 105 mph.

"With our successful first flight, we have verified the feasibility of fuel-cell-powered flight and our next steps will focus on improving efficiency levels and on extending the service life of these systems," said Dr. Josef Kallo, Antares project manager from the DLR Institute for Technical Thermodynamics. "At this stage, we have only tapped into a fraction of the performance capabilities of this technology for aerospace applications. The Antares DLR-H2 will help us to make much greater use of these areas of potential." To accommodate the fuel cell and its hydrogen supply, two external pods were attached under the aircraft's wings, which were reinforced to carry the load. The total efficiency of the drive system from tank to powertrain, including the propeller, is about 44 percent, making it about twice as efficient as conventional propulsion technologies based on combustion processes, according to the Aerospace Center. For more details about the project, click here to read the Aerospace Center's lengthy news release.

TCM's 0200 Lightweight Engine Now Offered To Piston Market

Teledyne Continental Motors announced this week that its O200 lightweight engine is now for sale to the piston aircraft market. The 199-pound engine, which is up to 40 pounds lighter than some earlier versions, is fully FAA-certified and comes with a factory warranty and 2,000 hours TBO, TCM spokesman Mac Little told AVweb. The O200 is similar to the engine that Cessna is using for the SkyCatcher, but it is now for sale to the individual buyer, Little said.

The engine comes complete with starter, ignition, and fuel systems, at a list price of $21,499. Orders are being taken now and deliveries will start next month, the company said. Little added that trade-ins are accepted from builders who already have a different engine but would prefer the O200; details and limitations can be found on the company Web site.

Wireless Tire Pressure Monitor System Available Now at Aircraft Spruce
Aircraft Spruce introduces a wireless tire pressure/temperature LCD monitor (TPMS). With the flip of a switch, this battery-operated handheld unit displays the actual tire pressure and temperature. Small, removable electronic valve sensors transmit pressure & temperature within 25-50 feet of the aircraft. Pressure can be read as PSI, KPA, BAR, or KG/CM2. Temperature can be read in Centigrade or Fahrenheit. The monitor also has an alarm setting for high or low pressure. Call 1 (877) 4-SPRUCE or visit AircraftSpruce.com visit AircraftSpruce.com.
Where to Look for LSAs: Oregon and Online back to top 

LSA Update -- Allegro Moves To Oregon; New Online Tool Helps Shoppers

Times have been tough lately for the U.S. aircraft biz, but a bright moment occurred this week when Allegro announced that its LSA, formerly built in the Czech Republic, will now be manufactured in Roseburg, Ore. "We believe in the Allegro and the USA Light Sport market and will continue with our expansion," said Doug Hempstead, president of Allegro USA. The new location will make it easier for U.S. customers to deal with warranties, parts, delivery and financing, the company said. The move was prompted by the strong Euro currency, which made the airplane too expensive for U.S. buyers, the company said. Australian customers will also benefit from the move, because their exchange rate in relation to the U.S. dollar is more favorable than the euro. Shipments from the Oregon factory are expected to begin by August.

Meanwhile, pilots who are considering an LSA purchase now have some help to sort through the almost 100 models now available. LSA guru Dan Johnson has created an easy-to-use online tool at his Web site that helps buyers find the right LSA by choosing preferences in 24 categories, such as price range, STOL capability, and metal or composite construction. The PlaneFinder will generate a listing of the LSAs that meet the user's criteria, with links to more info about each model. Use of the PlaneFinder is free, but registration is required.

Aspen Makes Going Glass More Affordable!
Aspen Avionics offers the most affordable glass cockpit solution on the market today. And until July 31, 2009, Aspen has made going glass more affordable with the Grand Glass Rebate program, offering a $1,000 rebate for all purchases of an EFD1000 Pro PFD. Come see Aspen at EAA AirVenture in Hangar B, Booth 2126. Act quickly to take advantage of this limited-time promotion.
News Briefs back to top 

For Backcountry Pilots, A New Place To Stay

Pilots who are ready to get out and explore the western U.S. this summer will find a warm welcome in Bozeman, Mont., thanks to the folks at the Recreational Aviation Foundation. Volunteers have built a new pilot shelter on land donated by the Gallatin Field Airport (KBZN), with bath and shower facilities, lots of green grass, a barbecue pit, and tie-downs. Pilots are welcome to stop by for a lunch break or to camp overnight. "It is a free facility and a wonderful aviation amenity," John McKenna, of the RAF, told AVweb this week. "The Bozeman airport would love to encourage out-of-the-area pilots to use it. They just need to know it exists."

The public airport offers two paved runways plus a grass strip, and fuel is sold on the field. Yellowstone National Park is nearby, and the area is a popular fly-fishing, hiking, and outdoor recreation destinations. "I know when I have traveled across the country, finding a place like this pilot facility would be like finding a gem," said McKenna. He also added that the RAF will be hosting a work party this weekend to help wrap up work on a new grass strip under construction in the Lewis and Clark National Forest. It will be the first new airstrip on U.S. Forest Service land in over 45 years, he said.

Pilots In Italy Protest Airspace Shutdown

Aviators in the U.S. who received forwarded e-mails from AOPA-Italy in the last few days soliciting contributions may have thought it was a scam -- the e-mail offered a bank account number for direct deposits, or suggested that readers "please call Antonella from Tuesday to Friday... giving us your credit card number." But although the e-mails may seem suspect, the appeal is legitimate, AOPA-Italia President Massimo Levi told AVweb on Tuesday. "Unfortunately, it is a very serious issue," Levi said in an e-mail. AOPA-Italia sent the e-mails to its local membership, and then they apparently were forwarded widely. Levi said a large chunk of the country's airspace has been closed to VFR traffic because of a financial dispute between Italy's aeronautics agency and its air force. The plea to its membership brought in the $20,000 AOPA-Italia needed to go to court against what Levi calls "an illegal administrative act." He wrote: "Italian pilots gave us the money in less than a week ... and we are now ready to fight!"

Levi said the issue has been picked up in the national news, "and this disturbed considerably our authorities; so much that we have been invited to 'discuss' the change of the Notams." He hopes that meetings will take place within a week or so.

Precisely Engineered for Fun: The Remos GX
The Remos GX's legendary German engineering, quality and performance give you an affordable, proven airplane with competitive operating costs. The new full-carbon-fiber wing system combines low weight and high strength for an almost unlimited lifetime. The new slotted flaps allows steeper descent rates and safer short-field landings. Technically superior but uncomplicated and easy to fly, our best-in-class useful load handles all the equipment you need for a unique, fun flying experience for years to come. Click now for details (Remos.com) or call 1 (877) REMOS-88.
What You Missed in AVwebBiz This Week back to top 

Epic "Scaled Back"

Epic Aircraft says it's working with customers and creditors to try to restore operations after economic issues forced curtailment of activity at the company's Bend build center last week. Company spokesman Mike Hooper told AVweb Tuesday that all but about 15 staff have been furloughed but that customers are allowed access to their partially completed aircraft. He said some work is being done but not at the rate before the furlough. "It's been scaled dramatically back," he said. Hooper said parts and service departments are in operation to support the existing fleet. The furlough appears to mainly affect the build center. "We have owner airplanes that are in varying stages of completion," Hooper said. He also said he's hopeful the problems can be resolved. "We have a plan afoot," he said. "Everyone's working to make a solution." AVweb has also confirmed that Epic is involved in at least two current legal actions. Related content: An owner's claim against Epic and Epic's response.

The Portland office of the U.S. District Court has confirmed that Epic is the defendant in a case brought by BlueSky AvGroup, one of the customers with an aircraft under construction at the build center. Epic is also suing Williams International, which supplies turbine engines for some of its jet aircraft. In the first case, BlueSky is seeking the appointment of a reciever and Epic is fighting that. In Epic's case against Williams, Epic is claiming that Williams defaulted on an agreement to supply engines for the Victory Jet program. While we could find Epic's statement of claim, we were unable to find a reply from Williams and unable to contact the company before our deadline so those documents will be on our site later.

Related Content:

Research Project Aims To Help Pilots Avoid Turbulence

A new system to help guide pilots away from severe storms and turbulence in remote ocean regions is being developed at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colo., NASA said this week. NASA is funding the development of a prototype that should be ready for testing next year. The system combines satellite data and computer weather models with artificial intelligence techniques to identify and predict rapidly evolving storms and other potential areas of turbulence. "Turbulence is the leading cause of injuries in commercial aviation," said John Haynes, program manager at NASA headquarters, in Washington. "This new work to detect the likelihood of turbulence associated with oceanic storms using key space-based indicators is of crucial importance to pilots." Turbulence has been cited widely as a possible factor in the recent loss of Air France 447 in the Atlantic Ocean, but it is not yet clear what role, if any, it played in that accident.

The prototype system will identify areas of turbulence in clear regions of the atmosphere as well as within storms. Pilots on selected transoceanic routes will receive real-time turbulence updates and provide feedback. When the system is finalized, it will provide pilots and ground-based controllers with text-based maps and graphical displays showing regions of likely turbulence and storms, NASA said. "Pilots currently have little weather information as they fly over remote stretches of the ocean, which is where some of the worst turbulence occurs," said scientist John Williams, one of the project leads at NCAR. "Providing pilots with at least an approximate picture of developing storms could help guide them safely around areas of potentially severe turbulence." Click here for the full NASA news release, which includes to a link to related graphics.

AVwebBiz: AVweb's Business Aviation Newsletter

Have you signed up yet for AVweb's no-cost weekly business aviation newsletter, AVwebBiz?

Delivered every Wednesday morning, AVwebBiz focuses on the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines in the business aviation industry, making it a must-read.

Add AVwebBiz to your AVweb subscriptions today by clicking here and choosing "Update E-mail Subscriptions."

Business Owners: AOPA Business Credit Card Offers WorldPoints® Rewards
The AOPA WorldPoints credit card rewards you and fights for GA with every purchase. By choosing this product, you will be providing valuable revenue to AOPA, which helps fund AOPA's daily efforts to maintain the freedom, safety, and affordability of GA. For every dollar you spend on purchases, you get a point — and double points at over 4,700 FBOs. Then redeem your points for great rewards like cash, merchandise, and travel. Limited time offer — $50 statement credit! Click here to apply today!
News Briefs back to top 

AirVenture Preparations Now In Full Swing

With the July 4th holiday behind us, and the Arlington fly-in going on this weekend, the next big thing on the aviation world's calendar is EAA AirVenture at Oshkosh ... coming up in just about two and a half weeks. The Notam is out, and pilots planning to fly in should be studying it soon to be sure they're familiar with all the procedures. Last-minute preparations are under way on site to be sure the grounds, now substantially reconfigured, are ready for the onslaught (click here for the new maps).

The airshow schedule has been announced, and as usual it features the world's best performers. Kirby Chambliss and Mike Goulian take a break from the Red Bull Air Races to fly their solo shows. Sean Tucker, Patty Wagstaff, Kyle Franklin, Debby Rihn-Harvey, the Aeroshell Team and many more unique and spectacular acts will perform. The LSA folks will have a new site for their Mall, where the FlyMart used to be, which should provide great visibility for visitors shopping for a new airplane. Hundreds of other exhibitors will have their latest airplanes and cutting-edge gear of all kinds on display. Several new aviation-themed films will get a screening, and popular entertainers from musician Livingston Taylor to ventriloquist Jeff Dunham will provide evening shows.

And of course AVweb will be there, providing daily reports, podcasts, and videos, as well as news via Twitter. First-time visitors will want to check out AVweb columnist Rick Durden's comprehensive "AirVenture Survival Guide." It was last revised in 2007, so some of the links may be out of date, but most of the information and advice is timeless -- and priceless. Also, AirVenture fan Ken Kalynuk has posted his own camping guide to help new visitors to the show; click here to download a PDF copy. And click here to listen to a recent AVweb interview with EAA spokesman Dick Knapinski about this year's show highlights. AirVenture runs from Monday, July 27, to Sunday, Aug. 2.

On the Fly ...

FAA is reviewing an AOPA suggestion to lessen the impact of the Cessna rudder AD...

Bob Hoover and Wayne Handley share their insights on surviving close calls in aviation in a new "Close Calls" DVD; click here to watch the trailer...

Bell's 429 light-twin helicopter is now certified in U.S. and Canada...

The Arlington Fly-In is happening now in Washington State, through Sunday...

The FAA has proposed an AD that would affect Pilatus PC-6 turboprops, requiring inspections and possibly replacement of some wing fittings. Comments are open until August 7...

Another executive at Platinum Jet pled guilty this week to charges stemming from a 2005 crash in which 11 people were hurt.

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The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You! back to top 

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.

Become a Mooniac Now
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Enough About Us; Let's Hear from You ! back to top 

Question of the Week: Your Air Show 2009 Plans

This Week's Question | Previous Week's Answers


Last week, in the wake of several VLJ announcements, we asked AVweb readers if there are still too many of these "personal jets" vying for space in an increasingly tough aviation market.

A small segment of those who responded (only 10%) said there's no market, and manufacturers should stop wasting their time and money. A strong majority of you, however, thought there's room for a few, although there will be more shakeout before things settle down. (This accounted for 60% of those who answered last week's questions.)

For a complete (real-time) breakdown of reader responses, click here.
(You may be asked to register and answer if you haven't already participated in this poll.)


Air show season is upon us, and this year we'd like to know which shows are part of your travel plans.

Which major aviation events are you attending (or have you already attended) this year?
(click to answer)

Have an idea for a new "Question of the Week"? Send your suggestions to .

This address is only for suggested "QOTW" questions, and not for "QOTW" answers or comments.
Use this form to send "QOTW" comments to our AVmail Editor.

Entegra Release 9 the Very Best Flight Deck System in Aviation
Avidyne's Entegra Release 9 Integrated Flight Deck System represents the next generation of integrated flight deck systems for light general aviation. The Entegra Release 9 retrofit for Cirrus SR20 & SR22 includes dual XGA high-resolution IFD5000 displays, dual-redundant FMS900w systems with a QWERTY-style control/display unit, next-generation fully-digital VHF radios, and dual WAAS/RNP-capable GPS receivers. Find out more about The Best Flight Deck in Aviation at Release9.com.
New on AVweb back to top 

AVweb Insider Blog: Something You Should See

We get a lot of news releases, and Glenn Pew admits that when some press notes about a tiny wing-flapping drone came across his desk, he didn't give it the time of day. In the latest installment of the AVweb Insider blog, Glenn explains why he's having second thoughts — and shares the details.

Read more.

AVweb Insider Blog: Greener Airplanes, Bluer Skies

In the latest installment of our AVweb Insider blog, editor Mary Grady laments that it can be tricky to be both an aviator and an environmentalist but is thankful for new technologies (and new ways of thinking) that help bridge the gap. When we talk about airplanes getting greener, notes Mary, it's not just emissions that make the difference.

Read more.

eBooks & eVideos
Most titles on the AVweb Bookstore (including Jeppesen, McGraw-Hill, ICAO, and many others) are also available as electronic downloads. Why not consider an eBook in Adobe .PDF format? Instant delivery. No shipping costs. Fully searchable, bookmarked, and hyperlinked. Hundreds of reference titles at your fingertips, in your laptop computer. Environmentally friendly. And no import taxes to international customers. Are you sold yet? Click here to learn more, and download a sample to try it out.
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 

Exclusive Video: Aspen EFIS in the Diamond DA20

Original, Exclusive Videos from AVweb | Reader-Submitted & Viral Videos

The DA20 is a terrific instrument and basic trainer, and now it has the option of a glass panel with the Aspen EFIS system. AVweb's Paul Bertorelli recently checked out the system with test pilot Rob Johnson.

Don't see a video screen?
Try disabling ad blockers and refreshing this page.
If that doesn't work, click here to download the video directly.

Video Marketplace Spotlight

Classic Cockpits DVDs
Rick Searle Productions takes you behind the stick of some of the world's most incredible classic airplanes — the Douglas DC-3, the PBY Catalina, the de Havilland Vampire, and the Avro Lancaster — in a series of Classic Cockpits DVDs.

Click here to watch the video (and discover other great products) at AVweb's Video Marketplace.

Peter Drucker Says, "The Best Way to Predict the Future Is to Create It"
It's easy for your company to be more proactive, flexible, and entrepreneurial with AVweb's cost-effective marketing programs. Discover the benefits of instant response, quick copy changes, monthly tracking reports, and interactive programs. To find out how simple it is to reach 255,000 qualified pilots, owners, and decision-makers weekly, click now for details.
Your Favorite FBOs back to top 

FBO of the Week: Eagle Aviation (SPF, Spearfish, South Dakota)

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

Last week, the Cessna Pilots Society held their annual fly-in at Spearfish, South Dakota, bringing over 50 Cessnas to bear on today's "FBO of the Week," Eagle Aviation.

We were flooded with comments from pilots who attended the event, many of whom told the tale of an overwhelmed FBO pulling off the near-impossible without breaking a sweat. Apparently the FBO offered a special rate on fuel to attendees and were johnny-on-the-spot when it came to assisting pilots with their tie-downs, serving up tasty barbecue, keeping the facilities "spotless" in spite of the crowds, and (according to one attendee) even resolving some issues with a rental car company on pilots' behalf. Jeffrey Chipetine writes, "A full ramp coupled with a full field of airplanes didn't faze them in the least. ... No matter what we needed (including such odd things as a PA system), Eagle came through for us."

Congrats to Laurie, Ray, and all the rest of the crew who got name-checked in this week's nominations. There's no doubt you guys worked hard to earn a nod as AVweb's "FBO of the Week"!

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!

No Cute Cartoons, No Fancy Covers, IFR Magazine Brings You the Facts
IFR magazine has insightful facts to polish your proficiency, updates on changing regs, and articles that help keep your decision-making skills sharp in the demanding IFR environment. Order your subscription online for savings from the regular rate.
Reader-Submitted Photos back to top 

Picture of the Week: AVweb's Flying Photography Showcase

Submit a Photo | Rules | Tips | Questions | Past Winners

Each week, we go through dozens (and sometimes hundreds) of reader-submitted photos and pick the very best to share with you on Thursday mornings. The top photos are featured on AVweb's home page, and one photo that stands above the others is awarded an AVweb baseball cap as our "Picture of the Week." Want to see your photo on AVweb.com? Click here to submit it to our weekly contest.


Push the office door shut, turn off the overhead light, put the cell phone on vibrate, or do whatever it is you do to make sure nothing interrupts you for two or three minutes: The latest installment of "Picture of the Week" is cleared for take-off!

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copyright © Leonard R. Duncil
Used with permission

"TiCo Belle" Back in the Air

Leonard Duncil of Titusville, Florida treats us to a jaw-dropping sight in this week's top photo — the C-47 TiCo Belle retaking the skies "after a long rebuild, in time for the July 4 celebration."

(Want to see more pics and read up on the "Belle" like we did? Check out this page at the Valiant Air Command (VAC) Warbird Museum web site.)

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Used with permission of Grant McHerron

Ballooning in Yarra Valley

Grant McHerron of East Bentleigh, Victoria (Australia) was on the ground crew for this commercial balloon "and supposed to be going up to the proposed landing site ... when I saw this view and had to take the shot."

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Used with permission of Steve Rider

Glen and Gaylon Starting

We can't get enough of classic planes that have been restored to flying condition. Thankfully there are plenty of AVweb readers like Steve Rider (of Fishers, Indiana) out there working on great restoration projects. Steve tells us it took "two years of hard work" from American Military Heritage Foundation volunteers to get the left engine running on Hot Stuff (a PV-2 Harpoon).

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Used with permission of
Christopher Zavatson

Fire-Fighting Demonstration

This photo from Christopher Zavatson of Woodland, California has suffered a little bit of digital damage, but we think you'll agree it's still a show-stopper.

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copyright © Stephen John Runnalls
Used with permission

Tigers Over the Harbour Ridge

Steve Runnalls of the beautifully named Narellan Vale, New South Wales (Australia) returns with a shot taken during a low-level New Year's Eve fly-by. (Steve tells us they worked with Sydney ATC to get special permission for the flight.)

(Psst — Steve also submitted another really cool cockpit view that we'll be slipping into this week's slideshow, so be sure to watch for it on AVweb's home page.)

It was a bumper crop of submissions this week, so we may not have the slideshow updated on AVweb's home page by the time you read this. Not to worry — we're loading it up with more than two dozen rockin' photos from AVweb readers, so check back later in the day if it hasn't been updated yet. (The silver lining is that you've got a few more hours to look at last week's bonus pics and save any you want to keep to your hard drive.)

Join in the fun! Click here to submit your own photos to "POTW."

A quick note for submitters: If you've got several photos that you feel are "POTW" material, your best bet is to submit them one-a-week! That gives your photos a greater chance of seeing print on AVweb, and it makes the selection process a little easier on us, too. ;)

A Reminder About Copyrights:
Please take a moment to consider the source of your image before submitting to our "Picture of the Week" contest. If you did not take the photo yourself, ask yourself if you are indeed authorized to release publication rights to AVweb. If you're uncertain, consult the POTW Rules or or send us an e-mail.

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:

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
Mariano Rosales

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.