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The FAA's operational test of a new NextGen computer system for air traffic control ran into problems last weekend at Salt Lake Center and had to be shut down -- but the problem could have been
averted, according to the National Air Traffic Controllers Association, if the FAA had included NATCA in its planning process. "The FAA has been stubbornly unwilling to collaborate with NATCA in this
project's development," NATCA Northwest Mountain Regional Vice President Jim Ullmann said in a news release on Wednesday. The
system, called En Route Automation Modernization (ERAM), promises to provide greater flexibility for controllers in the FAA's Next Generation Air Transportation System. FAA spokeswoman Laura Brown
told AVweb that operational testing of ERAM is necessary to bring the new system online. "This is the normal way we test things and find bugs," she said. Backup plans were in place and the new
system is now offline until fixes are made. She said although there was no official NATCA participation in the planning for the new system, air traffic controllers were involved in the process. She
added that the FAA and the union are now working on a Memorandum of Understanding to determine NATCA participation in that planning process going forward. Asked for a timetable, she said there is "no
line in the sand" and while the NextGen process is moving along, there are no further operational tests of the ERAM system scheduled as of now.
Ullmann said the FAA rushed the test to meet artificial deadlines without being fully ready. "NATCA stands ready, willing and able, as always, to help implement this system safely and effectively,"
he said. "All the FAA has to do is allow that to happen. We demand modernization that works and is safe." Controllers have no confidence in ERAM, according to NATCA. When the system failed on Saturday
morning, the backup system that kicked in caused serious problems of its own. Controllers lost information about the aircraft they were handling on their radar scopes, and the problems caused some
flight delays. Each of the five regional en route centers that border Salt Lake Center were affected. NATCA asked the FAA to stop any further testing of ERAM on live traffic until both parties can
reach an agreement on how to formally collaborate on the project. A new contract between the FAA and NATCA took effect just last week, resolving several years of conflict over work rules, training,
and other issues.
Your Engine Just Died and You've Got Three Choices Water? Road? Trees? Get this 20-minute program with tactics on handling emergency landings. Listen as safety expert Bob Martens examines factors such as off-field landing
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Cessna Aircraft Company on Wednesday announced it will offer a "deposit amplifier"
program through the end of the year that adds $30,000 to a deposit on a retail order for qualifying new Cessna 182 or Turbo 182 Skylane single-engine piston aircraft. The Cessna 182 and Turbo 182
Skylane is a four-place single-engine high-wing piston aircraft with a Lycoming IO-540 engine, Garmin G1000 avionics, and a range of more than 900 miles. With the turbocharger, the top speed of 150
knots increases to 176 knots, or about 202 mph, according to Cessna. The company is also offering a free service bulletin kit for certain software upgrades. Cessna added that buyers who may be
eligible to qualify for accelerated depreciation should complete their purchase by the end of the year.
The special offers are in effect for new retail customers anywhere in the world, Cessna added.
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This year's Red Bull Air Race World Championship ended Sunday in Barcelona, Spain, before a record crowd of 800,000 spectators, with the
top place for the six-race series going to British pilot Paul Bonhomme, who placed second in both 2007 and 2008. "Fantastic, thank you Barcelona," Bonhomme said after letting out a loud shout for joy
when he heard the news he had won the title on his cockpit radio. "It's been a huge amount of pressure. It's just a question of how you deal with it at the right time," he said. "I thought I'd better
get my skates on and that worked." Second place went to defending champion Hannes Arch of Austria, and third to Australia's Matt Hall, the best result ever for a rookie. The 15 competing pilots earn
points in each of the six races, and the final ranks are determined by the aggregate score. Bonhomme took three victories and three second places in the series, even though his Edge 540 plane was not
as fast as Arch's for most of the season.
"It was a real good fight all year," said Arch. Among the three U.S. pilots, Kirby Chambliss took fourth place, Mike Mangold took seventh, and Michael Goulian finished 10th overall. Mangold, who
won the championship twice, said he won't be back for the races next year, planning to spend more time with his family. "I would like to thank my team, equipment suppliers and fans for their
unwavering support over the years," he said. "And remember, 'Speed is Life.'" The weekend of racing in Barcelona drew a total of 1.2 million spectators.
A lightweight version of the Legend Cub LSA fitted with amphibious floats is now certified and ready to ship, American Legend Aircraft
Co., of Sulphur Springs, Texas, announced last week. The amphib first flew in July and already has traveled to Oshkosh and Maine, the company said. Along the way it made plenty of landings both on
land and water. The new Cub has several key features, according to Legend general manager Kurt Sehnert. "Firstly, doors on both sides of the cockpit give the Legend Cub pilot and passenger easy access
when docking the aircraft," he said. "Secondly, the Legend Cub's electric start, which did not exist on the original J-3, eliminates the precarious step of hand-propping and maneuvering back to the
cockpit." The first customer aircraft is now being built. The Amphibious Legend FloatCub sells for $159,000.
The floats are manufactured by Baumann Floats of New Richmond, Wisc. American Legend also offers a Cooperative Ownership Program through LetsFly.org
whereby buyers can purchase a share of a standard Legend Cub for as little as $2,900 down on a quarter-share of $31,046. Other fees are $289 a month and $36 per hour. Share prices for the amphib have
not been published.
New Scheyden Precision Eyewear Models Available at Aircraft Spruce
Scheyden Precision Eyewear has reduced cockpit clutter. By combining patented flip-up and locking mechanisms, Scheyden Classic Flip-Up and Dual RX models allow pilots to instantly and effortlessly
adapt to constantly changing light conditions, all with one frame. The handmade titanium frames are not only classic and timeless in their styling, but the clarity of Scheyden lenses has drawn rave
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Mark Dusenberry, the pilot who was hurt last Thursday in the crash of the 1905 Wright Flyer III replica in Dayton, Ohio, has been upgraded from critical to fair condition, hospital officials told
the Dayton Daily News on Wednesday. The officials said
Dusenberry, 48, has been released from intensive care, but gave no further details. Dusenberry was practicing at Huffman Prairie Flying Field in preparation for a celebration of the 104th Anniversary
of Practical Flight. He was just seconds into his second early morning flight when witnesses saw the aircraft begin to oscillate vertically before pitching down from about 20 feet and impacting the
ground (click here for a video). Also last week, Jim Eachus, 61, was lost when his experimental Avid Catalina seaplane sank in Inks Lake near Burnet, Texas. Rescue teams searched for days but found no sign of the pilot. On
Saturday morning, two campers discovered his body, which had drifted to shore.
Officials told the Burnet
Bulletin an autopsy will help to determine if Eachus died from injuries suffered in the crash, if he drowned, or if perhaps he had suffered a medical problem either prior to the crash or
afterward. Witnesses said Eachus had made a stop at Inks Lake State Park to empty water from the airplane's pontoons, then took off and flew to a height of about 40 feet before the airplane started to
descend. Its left wing dug into the water and it hit the surface. Eachus escaped through a window before the airplane sank, but then disappeared into the water.
Although authorities are not coming right out and saying it, it appears that Colton Harris-Moore, an 18-year-old suspected airplane thief from coastal Washington, may have broadened his horizons and added
firearms to the mix. KOMO reports that on Thursday, a Cessna 182 that was stolen Tuesday from Bonners Ferry, Idaho, was found
in a logged off area of wilderness near Granite Falls, Wash. It had suffered a hard landing but was intact; the arrival was considered survivable and no one was around. On Sunday night, Granite Falls
police were investigating an unusual robbery at a home in the town and reported a gunshot from the woods nearby. A massive search by police on Monday turned up nothing and there's been no sign of him
since but that fits the profile of the slippery Harris-Moore, who has repeatedly eluded would-be captors. Oh, and the only items missing from the typically booty-filled suburban home were a comforter
(overnight temperatures are in the 30s), some food and the homeowners' passports.
Harris-Moore is suspected of stealing another 182 and a Cirrus SR22 in Washington State in September before he is suspected of stealing a boat and taking it to Point Roberts, a small area of the
state surrounded by water and bordering Canada. It's theorized by some that he got into Canada from Point Roberts and traveled through British Columbia before sneaking across the border to Bonners
Ferry, where he found the 182. He has no formal flight training but authorities have said there is evidence that he's been studying flight instruction on the Internet. All three of the aircraft he may
have taken have been damaged but the latest suspected theft shows some accumulation of skill (or profound luck). Not many landings on rough areas, like the logging cutblock the most recent stolen 182
was found on, end up any better and if the untrained teen is behind it, he's been minding his virtual training. Granite Falls is on course from Bonners Ferry to Camano Island, where Harris-Moore is
from. Note the fully deployed flaps on the 182 in the accompanying photo.
The New Meridian G1000 Commanding
The new Meridian G1000 with Garmin G1000 avionics and GFC 700 autopilot suite, business jet luxury and turbine simplicity for 30% less than any comparable six-place turbine-powered aircraft.
With a panel as commanding as the airplane, and a million dollars less than its closest competitor, "Pilot in Command" means precisely that.
Carter Aviation Technologies, of Wichita Falls, Texas, said this week it has created two new subsidiary companies to handle
research, development, and manufacturing of its rotorcraft designs. "We are beginning a new phase in our corporate development," company president Jay Carter Jr. said in a news release. "Moving from a
research and development company into commercial production has required a great deal of investigation." He said the company decided to move into manufacturing on its own after discussions with
potential partners stalled. "Potential licensees were concerned about their staff being able to come up to speed quickly on the techniques and processes used in producing our designs," Carter said.
Carter Air Vehicles, the new manufacturing arm, will produce pre-production and initial production aircraft for the civilian market. "The future scope of our manufacturing will depend on demand for
our aircraft," Carter said. The other new subsidiary, Carter Aerospace Development, will handle research and development programs.
The company previously built a prototype technology-demonstrator aircraft and is now working to commercialize a four-place Personal Air Vehicle (PAV) design that was introduced last summer at AirVenture Oshkosh. The design incorporates a combination of rotorcraft and fixed-wing
features, the company says, and builds on the lessons learned in seven years of flight-testing the original prototype. It features newly developed automated controls and systems.
The FAA will no longer offer wholesale rates on aeronautical charts to dealers with less than $5,000 per year in sales, as of this week. Instead, retailers who meet the sales minimum can be
designated as Chart Agents, under a new system overseen by the FAA's National Aeronautical Navigation Services division
(formerly NACO). Agents can buy charts at 50 percent off the list price if they give up the option of returning unsold charts after they expire, or they can take a 40 percent discount with up to 20
percent returns. The Chart Agents also can act as dealers to the smaller outlets, and set their own rates and conditions. According to one of those agents, Chartdealer.com, over 90 percent of retail chart sales were previously made by the smaller dealers who can no longer buy direct from the FAA. Chartdealer is offering to sell those
small dealers charts at the same 40 percent discount they used to get from the FAA, but without the take-back provision. If small FBOs and flight schools opt out of carrying the charts, it will be
harder for pilots to find the charts they need.
The FAA hopes to save money by conducting all sales online and dealing in larger batches for fewer customers. Much more information about the program can be found at the FAA Web site, including a list of about 450 FAA Authorized Chart Agents who have agreed to operate under the New Chart Agent
Model as of last week. Only about half of those agents have agreed to act as sales outlets for smaller dealers, however. Click here to find
a chart agent near you.
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."
Do You Fly an Aircraft You Don't Own?
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Last week, we asked if Congress should be pushing harder to pass an FAA reauthorization bill.
Answers varied widely, but the plurality of you agreed with the admonition careful what you wish for; the final form of the bill may be a lot worse than what we have now. (That
option accounted for 40% of responses.)
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.)
THIS WEEK'S QUESTION ***
Eighteen-year-old alleged serial burglar Colton Harris Moore is suspected in the theft and semi-successful landings of three pretty advanced airplanes (two 182s and a brand-new,
decked-out SR22). Authorities say he learned to fly online. Do you buy it?
With its 600-series small turbofan, Pratt & Whitney probably made the technological breakthrough on cost that it said it would. So why didn't it break open the market? In the latest installment
of our AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli argues that it's probably because the airframes themselves remain complex and expensive to certify. Cheap engines don't equate to cheap
WingX GPS-Enabled Terrain-Aware Moving Map for iPhone! Just released Moving Map for your iPhone! Also: File flight plans and obtain and view legal weather briefings. View any NACO chart or airport diagram entire USA stored right on
your phone. A/FD, AOPA Directory, Route Planning, FARs, Animated RADAR, METARs, TAFs, winds and temperatures aloft, TFRs text and graphics, an E6B, and much more. WingX is also available for
Windows Mobile and Blackberry.
Click here for more
Do you use software for flight planning? Aviation Consumer magazine wants to know what computer tool you prefer, be
it a package you paid for, downloaded for free, or just use on the web. Even if you just glance at the METARs on ADDS and figure you'll stop for gas somewhere on the way, we'd appreciate you taking a
couple of minutes to answer at least some of these questions. Hey, you might even discover flight-planning options in the survey questions you never knew existed. Click here to participate.
(The results will appear in a future issue of Aviation Consumer. For subscription information, click
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 email@example.com. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.
Garmin Glass for the Diamond DA20! Diamond Aircraft is celebrating the introduction of the lowest cost certified glass cockpit airplane with a time-limited spectacular introductory offer. Every purchaser of a new DA20
equipped with Garmin G500 will receive a no-charge avionics upgrade and free SVT (Synthetic Vision Technology), a $9,685 value!*
or call (888) 359-3220.
Stability is a good thing ... except when it isn't. Nearly all general aviation aircraft are inherently stable, which makes them, in the words of military experimental test pilot
Desmond "Deuce" Brophy, "God-fearing aircraft." But the fighter jets Brophy flies and tests are a little different. During our visit to the flight test center at Edwards Air Force Base, Brophy
explained the fundamental aerodynamic differences between the aircraft we fly and what he calls "non-God-fearing aircraft."
(Don't let our censor bars distract you; they're simply there to protect some private names and numbers.)
New Reduced Prices for GloveLite® and for Shipping!
Now available in regular and OverGlove sizes the perfect gift for any aviator who flies at night. Patented design the light follows your fingertip! The flashlight you can't
drop® available online and from selected retailers.
AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Five Star Jet Center at Barne Municipal Airport (KBAF) in Westfield,
AVweb reader Tim Stevens told us how 5SJC keeps 'em coming back for more with great prices and that old pilot favorite, free food "burgers and hot dogs on the patio while we
overlook the fueling on the ramp." Tim says "great hospitality and superior facilites" make this a must-stop destination when you're in the area.
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.
*** THIS WEEK'S WINNERS ***
We're a bit overwhelmed by the staggering number of submissions we received for this week's "POTW" contest. While the extra pics kept us busy this week, it means we'll have
an extra-large helping of bonus pics in our home page slideshow throughout the week we may even get sneaky and swap out a few part-way through the week as a way of sharing even more extras
so be sure to head over to AVweb.com when you're done here and check out the bonus pics. (You'll find them about 1/3 of the way down the page in the central
Veronica von Allwörden of Langley, Washington tops the pile in one of the toughest "POTW" battles of recent memory. Veronica says
she took this photo "in a turn a few years ago over the San Juan Islands in Washington State." (And before anyone asks: Yes, she 'fessed up to PhotoShopping out the N-number in the name of
Remember how we said there were a lot of photos to wade through this week? Nearly a tenth of them came from the talented Peter Zabriskie of
Bloomington, Indiana and, alas, we're going to reward Peter's generosity and diligence by making a cautionary tale of him. See, we had so many awesome shots from Peter in one batch of photos
that we couldn't possibly share them all with you this week, even by including a couple in our slideshow (which we did). In the future, Peter (and all you other shutterbugs out there), we encourage
you to space out your submissions, limiting it to a couple each week. This gives you a better chance of getting your photos seen, and it also saves the frustration of having to throw back fantastic
shots in the name of giving everyone's photos a chance to shine.
(No good deed goes unpunished, Mr. Z but we hope you don't hold it against us, because man alive, we'd like to see more of your photos!)
Hamish Watchman of Palmerston North, Manawatu (New Zealand) puts the question to AVweb this week, and our answer is this: We're not sure
but we'd love to come to New Zealand and find out! Judging by the photos we get from your neck of the woods, Hamish, we're missing some of the best local air shows in the
world ... .
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.
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 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.