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Volume 17, Number 8a
February 21, 2011
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AVflash! FAA Reauthorization Bill ... To Pass?back to top 

All eyes are now on the House after the full Senate passed its version of an FAA reauthorization bill. The Senate approved a two-year measure allocating a total of $34.5 billion in an 87-8 vote. The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee approved a four-year reauthorization bill to be considered by the full House. It's not known when it will hit the floor but the current temporary extension of the FAA's operating authority (the 17th since 2007) expires March 31 and there seems to be the will to get a more permanent measure in place by then. The Senate bill passed with major revisions from earlier iterations. More...

Cessna Aircraft || Makers of the Cessna 
More Versatile than a Swiss Knife
For more than 25 years, operators have relied on the Caravan models to meet the most demanding mission parameters. To which the Caravan replies, "Bring it on." Its confidence is backed by a remarkable dispatch reliability rate of over 99 percent and exceptional payload capabilities from its 675-horsepower engine. And when you consider the versatility, configurability, and sheer ruggedness of the Caravan line, the applications are virtually limitless.

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Meanwhile, at the Airport ...back to top 

American Airlines says proposed rules intended to reduce pilot fatigue would require it to hire an additional 2,325 pilots at a cost of $514 million annually, and seemed to suggest the industry-wide effect could be crippling. The rules would effectively decrease maximum time on duty for pilots. In November, American offered public comments on the rules, saying "if AA needs 2,300 more pilots to meet the proposed rules, other certificate holders will need many additional pilots, too." Stakeholders also claim that the regulation's cost will be substantially higher than the FAA's estimate of $1.25 billion over 10 years. The Air Transport Association says the rule would cost more than 15 times that figure. As for the total number of pilots needed to meet the requirements of the bill, American said, "The industry figure will be so large as to raise the question of from where they all will come." American wasn't the only carrier to express concern. More...

In a precedent-setting decision, the operator of a Southern California airport has been ordered by the FAA to allow resumption of glider operations or risk losing its federal grants. As we reported in 2009, Riverside County evicted more than 40 gliders and closed the grass strip they used, citing safety concerns. The agency ruled last week the county's reasoning was "flawed" and, after studying the issue, determined the airport layout will accommodate the "safe simultaneous operations of glider and powered aircraft." The crux of the matter was whether safety was used as a cover for discrimination against the gliders and the FAA suggested the eviction was an "unreasonable denial" of use at the airport. "The (county) is obligated by its grant assurances … to operate the airport -- not just specific pieces of infrastructure on it -- on reasonable terms and without unjust discrimination," the FAA said in its decision. More...

Bose® A20™ Aviation Headset
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Watson, Hummingbird — A Big Week for Robotsback to top 

A Nano Air Vehicle (NAV) created by AeroVironment, designed to look and fly like a hummingbird, has achieved remote-controlled hover and flight while carrying a camera that transmits real-time video to its control unit. When we last saw the vehicle in video, its control looked questionable. Now, the ornithopter is shown in controlled hover and maneuvers, flying through a doorway and into a building, while sending live video back to its operator (Click for video). Two years ago, the first version could fly for 20 seconds. Now, it can fly up to 11 miles per hour and has a duration of about eight minutes. The project is the result of a DARPA-funded effort by AeroVironment for a potential stealthy reconnaissance vehicle for use in urban environments. Its success "paves the way for a new generation of aircraft with the agility and appearance of small birds," according to DARPA NAV project manager, Dr. Todd Hylton. More...

Experts Model 2010 CO Detector from 
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Time for an Apple Store Beside the FBO? Almost ...back to top 

Executive Jet has earned official authorization from the FAA to use the Jeppesen Mobile TC App for iPad as a sole reference for electronic charts and as a direct replacement of paper aeronautical charts in the cockpit. Executive Jet managed that after three months of in-flight evaluation that included more than 250 flight segments and one rapid-decompression test initiated at 51,000 feet. That testing involved 55 pilots, and Jeppesen says it was provided with feedback that it incorporated into an update for the app, released last month. For now, the FAA's approval for the Jeppesen app on the iPad is for Executive Jet, and only Executive Jet. Jeppesen hopes that's just the beginning and, according to Jeppesen, many carriers may feel the same way. More...

ForeFlight Mobile, one of the most popular chart viewing and flight planning apps for the iPhone and iPad, now offers georeferencing—a fancy term for showing where the aircraft is on approach charts and airport diagrams. The data for georeferencing has been in the software for some time, but not active because ForeFlight felt the internal GPS in the iPhone and iPad was too unreliable. ForeFlight's co-founder, Tyson Wells said customer demand coupled with aftermarket GPS units from Bad Elf and GNS GmbH made this the right time for a change. In addition to position, GPS-derived altitude, groundspeed and track can be shown while viewing the approach plate. Meanwhile, ForeFlight's leading competitor, WingX, is on the verge of some big changes of their own. More...

Legal Aspects of Aircraft Lease Agreements 
|| September 8-9, 2011 || London, UK || Register Now
Second LAW on Legal Aspects of Aircraft Lease Agreements
Following the success of the previous Workshop in Washington, DC in 2010, this Legal Aviation Workshop (LAW) will cover the following themes: Introduction to Aircraft Lease Agreements, Types of Lease Agreements, Aircraft Lease Agreements and Contract Law, Brief Refresher on Contract Formation and Enforcement, Operating Leases ("Dry"), Standard Terms and Conditions, Negotiating Issues, Aircraft, Crew, Maintenance & Insurance ("Wet") Leases, Standard Terms and Conditions as well as Negotiating Issues. Click here to learn more and register.
News Briefsback to top 

Women in Aviation International will host its 22nd annual conference next week in Reno, Nev., from Feb. 24 to 26. The event brings together a wide range of aviation professionals, educators and enthusiasts, and welcomes men as well as women from around the world. A variety of professional development seminars, networking opportunities, exhibits and social events are offered. The history of women's contributions to aviation will be explored in talks about the Womens Airforce Service Pilots, the 1929 women's air derby and more. At the conclusion of the conference, on Saturday night, this year's inductees to WAI's Aviation Pioneer Hall of Fame will be announced, and 66 scholarships worth more than $600,000 will be awarded. About 3,200 attendees are expected.

Related Content:


Wednesday, a man walked into the local Sheriff's office to report that his aircraft, a 1955 Cessna 310, had been stolen from Turlock Airport (roughly 90 miles east of San Francisco), about two years ago. It seems the victim bought the plane on the east coast back in 2007, flew it across the country and parked it in his hangar. Details are sketchy, but the victim apparently left his plane unchecked until the FAA contacted him to let him know the aircraft had been sold in 2009, or was otherwise out of compliance. When the victim went to check on the aircraft, he discovered it was missing. Merced deputy Tom Mackenzie told local newspaper The Merced Sun Star that it appears the aircraft had been flown off the airport and that the criminal had then forged signatures on a bill of sale dated April 2009, before selling the aircraft to someone else. More...

WingX Pro 7 || Moving Map for the iPad || 
Hilton Software
WingX Pro7 Moving Map for iPad!
The $99 Moving MapWingX Pro7 Moving Map for iPad is now available for your iPad. See your location on the approach chart; Approach Charts and Airport Diagrams are now geo-referenced*, and all are stored right on the iPad! WingX Pro7's interactive moving map displays Class B, C, and D airspaces; animated weather images; A/FD; AOPA Directory with Yelp integration; route planning, FARs, METARS, TAFS, winds, and temperatures aloft; TFRs' text and graphics; an E6B; and more. WingX is also available for Windows Mobile, Blackberry, and Android. Click here for more information.
Opinion & Commentaryback to top 

Geez, some well-meaning geezer tells Paul Bertorelli to "be careful," and he goes off the deep end. But he does have a point. What does this banal statement mean relative to aviation risk? After 500 words on the AVweb Insider blog, Paul has the conclusive answer: Not much, it turns out. Read more and join the conversation. More...

That's the question for the latest installment of our blog, as ABC reports that pilots too poorly paid to afford hotels are bunking in the pilot lounge or concourse and showing up in the cockpit exhausted. But FAA Adminstrator Randy Babbitt says it's not happening. Who's right? You tell us, says Paul Bertorelli, on the AVweb Insider. Read more and join the conversation. More...

AeroExpo UK || 17-19 June 2011 || Sywell, 
AeroExpo UK
... is the dedicated General Aviation exhibition in 2011, showcasing everything from ultralights through to turboprops and jets. Whether you are interested in learning to fly or are already a pilot and want to view the latest products available, AeroExpo UK has it covered!

Click here to learn more.
Hey, Buddy — Can You Spare an Opinion (or Two)?back to top 

The FAA just announced that it will convene a special committee to investigate an unleaded replacement for 100LL avgas. This committee will hear from the alphabets, aircraft manufacturers and users of avgas. AVweb would like to know your opinions on the current state of affairs in the search for an unleaded replacement for 100LL. Click here to take the survey. More...

Have you added more than oil to your engine? If you've tried oil additives like CamGuard or AVblend, Aviation Consumer wants to know how it worked out. Whether your experience was good, bad or of no consequence whatsoever, they want to know. Please take a moment to fill out their survey to help the research effort for an upcoming, in-depth review. Click here to take the survey. More...

AVbuys || AVweb Stories About Great 
Deals in Aviation
Fly More for Less
Visit the AVbuys page for discounts, rebates, incentives, bargains, special offers, bonus depreciation, or tax benefits to help stretch your budget. We're helping you to locate and view current offers instantly, with a direct link to sponsors' web sites for details.

Click for the resource page.
Letter of the Weekback to top 


Letter of the Week: NOTAMs Are for Everyone

I just read the FAA's letter to Senator Inhofe with regard to his landing on a closed runway and his subsequent take-off from a taxiway in October. It's good that the Senator had to take some remedial training, but is this really going to cause an attitude adjustment on his part? His statement about most pilots ignoring the whole NOTAM picture does not reflect well on the rest of us. I mean, come on, how hard is it?

When we get a briefing from DUATS, a whole list of NOTAMS comes up at the end. I always scan the huge list of en route NOTAMS, even though most turn out to be irrelevant to my flight. But I, and I'm sure most of us, give a good deal of attention to at least the departure and arrival NOTAMs.

After ignoring the large Xs, construction equipment, and workers on the runway and landing, [Inhofe] had the nerve to take off from a taxiway without permission from the airport management or FAA. Did he think that he was going to just sneak out, or did he think that he would just throw his position around and make it go away?! In this time of TFRs and hypersensitivity to aviation security, we must all do our homework diligently!

I hope Inhofe never decides to visit AirVenture. Who knows if he would take the time to read that NOTAM!

Steve Tobias

Click through to read the rest of this week's letters.


Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 255,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to What have you heard? More...

Light Plane Maintenance Toolbox CD
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AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

The annual conference of WAI is coming up this weekend (Feb. 24 to 26) in Reno, Nevada. President Peggy Chabrian explains what the group is all about, what happens at the conference, and why it's a great destination for anyone — male or female — who is interested in launching or advancing an aviation career. Note: This podcast was recorded last week. The WAI Conference is this weekend, February 24-26, is Reno, Nevada.

This podcast is brought to you by Bose Corporation. More...

In the 1930s, the German war machine created an amazing STOL aircraft called the Storch. A 3:4 scale version of the aircraft is now available as an LSA or experimental amateur-built plane through U Fly It Sport Aircraft. More...

Probably not, but you may still want to consider a cockpit carbon monoxide detector. In this video, AVweb and Aviation Consumer take a look at these relatively inexpensive safety gadgets. They have steadily improved in recent years, and there are more choices than ever. 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.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


Our latest "FBO of the Week" has actually held the honor once before — two years ago.

Bay Minette Aviation at Bay Minette Municipal Airport (1R8) near Mobile, Alabama makes a return appearance on our top FBOs list after getting high marks from AVweb readers in the intervening months. "Friendly staff, low prices, and plenty of runway," remarked Tim Hynes, before confessing, "I almost want to keep this one a secret!"

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!


The Lighter Side of Flightback to top 


Heard in Cape Town, South Africa:

N1234A (someone with an American Accent) :
"Cape Town, uh — is that going to be the ILS Yankee or Zulu for Runway 19?"

Someone Else (not a controller, but someone with a South African accent) :
"It must be the ILS Zulu. Yankees are in America, but Zulus live here in Africa."

The controller and pilot from N1234A both laughed.

via e-mail


Heard anything funny, unusual, or downright shocking on the radio lately? If you've been flying any length of time, you're sure to have eavesdropped on a few memorable exchanges. The ones that gave you a chuckle may do the same for your fellow AVweb readers. Share your radio funny with us, and, if we use it in a future "Short Final," we'll send you a sharp-looking AVweb hat to sport around your local airport. No joke. Click here to submit your original, true, and previously unpublished story. More...

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.

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