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Volume 16, Number 23a
June 7, 2010
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AVflash! Engine Makers Differ on Future Fuelsback to top 
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As the industry continues to drift toward some unknown solution to the extinction of 100LL, Continental and Lycoming disagree on what the octane for that replacement should be. Continental has been aggressively pushing for 94UL and gave AVweb a briefing on that project at the Mobile factory two weeks ago. As with Lycoming, many of Continentals engines will require only 80-octane fuel and will have no problem with 94UL. For those that don't, Continental is planning a combination of tweaks, including low-compression overhauls, engine replacements, knock sensing and electronic controls. But Lycoming's GM Michael Kraft told us last week that certifying 94UL as the replacement piston fuel would be a huge mistake that could cost the industry billions in lost business.He believes that owners and operators are the ones most at risk and that most don't understand how significantly performance will be reduced or restricted by 94-octane fuel. "If people really understood what's going on today, they would understand that we need to set the objective at 100 octane fuel," Kraft told us at Lycoming's Williamsport plant last week.

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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 all. Visit
Unexpected Excitement at Red Bull Raceback to top 

Australian Red Bull competitor Matt Hall narrowly escaped disaster Saturday when he stalled and hit the Detroit River during qualifying for the Windsor, Ontario, race. Video supplied by Red Bull shows Hall's left wing and main landing gear hitting the water coming out of a turn but he fortunately had enough energy to keep flying and was able to recover. "I felt I was having a fairly good run," Hall said. "I might have skipped twice on the water. It's a very disappointing result for me. It's the motor racing equivalent of touching the wall." Well, if you say so. Hannes Arch won the race, Sunday, and Paul Bonhomme was second.. More...

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Aviation Safetyback to top 

Newly released transcripts from the cockpit recorder of the Polish government aircraft that crashed in Russia in April show the crew ignored system warnings and offer no direct proof that the crew's actions were influenced by political officials onboard (but may suggest that). According to reports, the 41-page transcript released Tuesday shows the crew was aware of the weather at Smolensk's Severny airport, which was worse than minimums, but proceeded with the approach even as system warnings began to sound in the cockpit. The crash killed all aboard, including the Polish president. Investigators now say the crew apparently ignored a total of 16 aircraft system warnings before the Tu-154 began impacting trees. But prior to that, the transcript also shows the captain said, "We don't know if we will be able to land," followed by a foreign ministry official stating, "Well, we have a problem." More...

Low-budget British airline EasyJet is betting more than $1 million that infrared technology will help their pilots avoid future volcanic ash clouds and ash-cloud-induced losses for the airline. The Airborne Volcanic Object Identifier and Detector (AVOID) would detect an ash cloud from about 60 nm away using infrared cameras and infrared radiation sensing equipment. In practice, it would give the crew of a cruising EasyJet Airbus A340 about seven minutes to identify the cloud and properly respond. The technology is being developed in partnership with Airbus and has so far earned an investment of more than $1.2 million from EasyJet. The airline estimates it may have lost more than $75 million in April and May from repeated airspace closures that occurred when volcanic activity in Iceland spread ash clouds over much of Europe. If all goes well, devices could be in place on EasyJet aircraft by year-end. Meanwhile, air authorities have been working on a different approach. More...

Highway landings happen all the time but not usually with paying passengers, as happened in central Manitoba, Canada, on Friday. The pilot of a Gillam Air Services Britten Norman Islander set down on a straight stretch of highway near Thompson, about 500 miles north of Winnipeg, after an apparent engine failure. There were five pax on the nine-passenger twin. The pilot told authorities he couldn't maintain altitude on one engine so he put down on the highway and taxied to a picnic area so as not to disrupt the normal occupants of the asphalt. There was no damage and no injuries. More...

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First Ever Aircraft Auction at Oshkosh, in partnership with EAA, will be hosting an aircraft auction at AirVenture on Saturday, July 31, 2010. All aircraft welcome, from single-engine to jets. To buy or sell your plane, visit or click here for more information.
News Briefsback to top 

NASA is actively seeking proposals to be received by July 15 for studies that aim to realize (by 2025) commercial airliner concept designs for quieter, cleaner and more economical flight -- and winners could see a payoff. According to the agency, "The total potential value of the research contracts is $36.6 million." Technological goals of the program include a 50-percent reduction in fuel consumption and nitrogen oxide emissions and an 80-percent reduction in the "nuisance noise footprint around airports" when compared with current airliners. Competitive design concepts will also be optimized for operation in the NextGen air traffic control environment. Once selected, test areas may include capabilities "that could enable routine operation of future unpiloted air vehicles." Entries will be distilled to as many as four teams that will then embark on 12-month studies to commence in fiscal year 2011. More...

The Air Force says Col. Dawn Dunlop was the first woman to fly an F-22 and becomes the "first female fighter test pilot to lead an Air Force wing" when, on June 4, she takes command of the 412th Test Wing at Edwards Air Force Base. Prior to 1993, the Air Force carried a ban on female fighter pilots. Dunlop graduated from the Air Force Academy in 1988 and went on to the Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards in 1997. She has accumulated more than 3,300 flight hours (including combat hours) and has flown more than 25 aircraft models. In November of 2003, then Lt. Col. Dunlop became the first woman to fly the Raptor after that year being assigned as operations officer for the F-22 Combined Test Force at Edwards. Dunlop will succeed Brig. Gen. William Thornton to assume her latest command. More...

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Opinion & Commentaryback to top 

Logistical conflicts and organizational nightmares threaten to tarnish not only the gathering of 40+ Douglas DC-3s at EAA AirVenture in July — but also the relationship between the group's organizers and the EAA. AVweb's Russ Niles thinks the event's signficance overshadows the concerns of either group, and on the AVweb Insider blog, he calls for both parties to put aside their differences and make things work. Click here to read what Russ has to say, then add your own comments. More...

AVMAIL: JUNE 7, 2010

Letter of the Week: Getting Real With ADS-B

The way I've always understood the implementation of ADS-B is that the promise to GA was the benefit of ADS-B in at the cost of ADS-B out. The understanding was that the cost of both a GPS and a UAT were what we as GA pilots paid to obtain that benefit. When I upgraded my panel, I did everything but purchase a UAT because it really wasn't available and nothing talked to it. What happened to that dream?


Perhaps this is an opportunity for economic growth? Let's get some of those "stimulus" dollars working by stimulating our avionics industries to produce the gear we need and hire techs to install them into all those aircraft which would benefit from a basic GNS-430W/GTX-330ES upgrade (or a newer, lower-cost replacement for that combination). Perhaps the FAA will get the spirit and help the manufacturers by searching for ways to meaningfully reduce the overhead costs to certify the new equipment; maybe something like what the LSA people are doing?


If the FAA wants to mandate new technology, good; it's about time. If they really want to see that technology deployed, then get busy and find ways to help the manufacturers deliver quality products for a price that makes sense on the benefit/value side of things.

Jim McDuffie

Click through to read the full text of Jim's letter and other missives from AVweb readers — mostly on ADS-B ... .


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

Actually, Aviation Consumer wants a little bit of your engine data for a research product we're doing. If you don't mind sending us a sample data file, contact Paul Bertorelli at

Contact us before sending anything. Thanks. 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 What have you heard? More...

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Expanded Coverage: The Great Debate Over Fuelback to top 

In the first of two podcasts, Paul Bertorelli talks with Bill Brogdon of Teledyne-Continental Motors about octane requirements and the shift to post-leaded aviation fuels. More...

In the second of two related podcasts on the shifting landscape of aviation fuel, Lycoming's Michael Kraft talks to Paul Bertorelli about performance and why the market may not be ready for lower-than-100-octane fuels. More...

Continental is championing the idea of replacing 100LL with 94UL, but Lycoming's Mike Kraft says that's a sure ticket to shrink the industry and that new fuel needs to be at least 100 octane. In the latest installment of our AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli wades into the arguments and speculates on how there can be so much uncertainty over the future of aviation fuels. Click here to read Paul's blog, the feel free to add your own thoughts to the conversation. More...

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Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


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Maybe it's the summer vacation effect, but AVweb's "FBO of the Week" nominations basket is filling up with stories of great FBOs from the panhandle down through central Florida and all the way south to Palm Beach, where AVweb reader Wally Moran recently experienced "the best service I have ever had at an FBO." Here's the story of Wally's visit to Lantana, Florida's Windward Aviation at Palm Beach County Park Airport (KLNA):

This is a maintenance facility next to the FBO. I arrived in the late afternoon with a gear indication problem, and when Mr. James Leach, the owner, met me at the front desk, I explained that I needed to leave ASAP but felt the gear indication needed attention. He quickly moved another aircraft out of the hangar, moved mine in, assigned two A&Ps to the job, and jacked and checked the gear. Thanks to his fine service, I was able to depart on time and at a very resonable cost.

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!


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AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

Could it really be? Is the iPad the ultimate cockpit EFB (electronic flight bag) that we've all been waiting for? Find out in this review by AVweb and Aviation Consumer's Paul Bertorelli. It has potential — so much potential ... . More...

Kim Prout's homebuilt Europa Monowheel is one of the highest-time examples in the U.S. and amply shows off the superb combination of agility and utility in this exclusive video from the editors of Kitplanes magazine. More...

Traditional Tactics Need a Fresh Approach
Doing the same thing and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. Isn't it time to initiate a digital marketing program with AVweb that will deliver traffic and orders directly to your web site? Discover several new and highly successful marketing options to use in lieu of static print or banner campaigns. Click now for details.
Help Us Celebrate AVweb's 15th Anniversaryback to top 

CLICK HERE to Register for All 15 

Win an AV8OR handheld GPS (from Bendix/King by Honeywell) as we celebrate our 15th Anniversary! All you have to do is click here to enter your name and e-mail address. (You only have to enter once, and you'll be entered in our prize drawings for the entire year — so if you've already entered, you're all set.)

And no, we're not going to rent or sell your name, ever. Tell your friends, and invite them to sign up for AVweb so they can qualify for our 15 Grand Giveaways prize drawings, too. (We won't spam them, either — but we hope they will sign up for our newsletters.)

Deadline for entries is 11:59pm Zulu time June 18, 2010.

Click here to read the contest rules and enter.

Congratulations to William R. Smith of Madison, Connecticut, who won a King Schools Get-It-All Pilot Training Kit in our last drawing! (click here to get your own from King Schools)


The Lighter Side of Flightback to top 


Overheard on April 28th, 2009 near PBI:

Palm Beach Center:
"United 12345, climb and maintain 3,000."

Spirit 12345:
"Spirit 12345. Climb and maintain 3,000."


"And thanks for the compliment!"

Adam Green
via e-mail


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
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.