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Volume 17, Number 26a
June 27, 2011
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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AVflash! The GPS-4G Battle for Bandwidthback to top 
Sponsor Announcement
Arlington Fly-In || July 6-10, 2011

LightSquared says the GPS industry should pay to shield its devices from interference its proposed network of wireless internet transmitters might cause. On Thursday, the company launched a counteroffensive in the increasingly acrimonious battle over the bandwidth it hopes to use for the nationwide wireless network of 40,000 towers. The GPS industry says tests prove the broadband network will disrupt GPS signals and is urging authorities to reject LightSquared's proposal. LightSquared released an economic impact study (PDF) done by the Brattle Group last week suggesting the GPS industry has been and continues to be heavily subsidized in that the timing signals used in their devices are owned, operated and maintained by the federal government through the Department of Defense. Its line of logic goes on to suggest that GPS manufacturers should be willing to invest the money to shield their devices from the interference generated by the LightSquared signals. In fact, in a news release (PDF) accompanying the report, the Brattle Group suggests that it's the GPS devices that are infringing on LightSquared's bandwidth by not being adequately shielded. "Fixing this problem through the deployment of better filters in GPS devices will add some costs to the GPS industry, but those costs would only be a fraction of the $120 billion in benefits that would be created by LightSquared's deployment of its LTE network," the news release said. It says filters would add only 30 cents to the cost of a new GPS device but acknowledges that retrofitting would be substantially more costly. The study was released as two congressional committees waded into the dispute last Thursday and may have prevented the FCC from approving the LightSquared proposal. More...

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PAS 2011: Alternative Power and the City of Lightsback to top 

After several weather-related flight delays, Solar Impulse made a successful demonstration flight June 26, the last day of the Paris Air Show. The sun-powered four-engine aircraft is intended to shine a light on green technologies. It's backed by Bertrand Piccard, the Swiss adventurer best known for circumnavigating the world in the Breitling Orbiter 3, a propane balloon, in 1999.

Related Content:


Among the technological demonstrators being shown at the Paris Air Show, is the DA36 E-Star -- a two-seat, low-wing motorglider powered by a serial hybrid electric drive. The aircraft, a modified Diamond HK36 Super Diamona, first flew June 8. It was developed by Siemens, EADS and Diamond Aircraft of Austria with a goal of reducing fuel consumption and emissions by 25 percent. It carries a serial hybrid drive that turns the aircraft's prop with a Siemens 70kW electric motor. An onboard 40-hp Wankel rotary engine provided by Austro Engine serves as a generator (only) and kicks in to keep the batteries, provided by EADS, fed. There are no specific plans for the drivetrain ... but there are general ones. More...

Pilots Require a Different Approach
When It Comes to Buying Life Insurance

Just because you fly, don't overpay for life insurance. Get the information you need to find the right policy for your family's protection at the Pilot Insurance Center.

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Electronic Interference Inside the Aircraftback to top 

Some airlines have installed wi-fi, and others are putting iPads in the cockpit, but a recent report and real-world incident reports suggest interference from portable electronic devices (PEDs) is real and potentially dangerous. Is it? AVweb's Glenn Pew recently spoke with Dave Carson, who co-chaired a federal advisory committee on portable electronic devices in aviation, to better understand the threat. The committee was originally asked to create a list of safe and unsafe devices, but it quickly resolved that the task wouldn't be that simple. More...

Alaska Airlines is putting iPads in the cockpits their airplanes, even as ABC News has released a report highlighting their disruptive potential to airplane avionics. What's the real story on portable electronic devices and aviation equipment? AVweb's Glenn Pew asked Dave Carson, who co-chaired a federal advisory committee on PED safety, to walk us through the finer points. More...

Reletex Anti-Motion Sickness Device ||
Meet the New Reletex Anti-Motion Sickness Device!
It's finally here — Reletex, the new version of the highly-touted ReliefBand that is so effective for nausea and vomiting due to motion sickness. Worn on the wrist, the Reletex produces a small neuromodulating current which stops peristaltic waves in the stomach, ceasing nausea and vomiting without drugs or side effects. Reletex is available in 60- and 150-hour versions. O.K. for pilots and great for aerobatic flight. Reletex — exclusively at
Farms and Fuelback to top 

Detroit-area airports are putting their surplus lands where their fuel nozzles are to try to boost the alternative fuels movement. The airport authority has turned over three acres of land to Michigan State University to grow canola and oriental mustard seed, two feedstocks for biofuel in a $476,000 state-funded project to see if all those 1,700 acres of neatly mown infields, overruns and other open space at Wayne County Airport and Willow Run Airport can be put to better use. If the trial is successful, the concept is that the feedstock from all the airport lands will be processed onsite and dropped into the airports' fuel tanks to supplement the regular fossil fuel supply. "How does aviation protect itself in the future against the depletion of fossil fuels and the uncertainty of foreign sources of energy?" WCAA Interim CEO Genelle Allen wondered in a news release. "Part of the answer may be to grow it."

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Diamond HK-36 Motor Glider || Available 
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News Briefsback to top 

Two loaded airliners nearly collided on Runway 22R at JFK on June 20 and while an accident did not take place, the event produced more than just some interesting audio. The incident involved a loaded Egyptair Boeing 777-300 fueled for Cairo and a Munich-bound Lufthansa Airbus A340-600 with 286 on board. When the Egyptair jet missed its turn, the two jets were rolling toward each other on the active runway as the Lufthansa accelerated for takeoff. Audio of the event includes comments from pilots of nearby aircraft. They include, "Yeah. That was quite a show ... thought it was going to be a short career." (Click through for audio.) More...

Canada's Transportation Safety Board says drunk passengers aboard a short charter flight off the country's West Coast likely caused the crash of a float-equipped Cessna 185 in May of 2010. In its report the TSB postulates that a rear-seat passenger pushed the pilot's seat forward with his or her feet and held him and the control column pinned to the panel until the Atleo Air Services aircraft dove at a 45-degree angle into ocean off Ahousat, an isolated community on the west coast of Vancouver Island. "It is likely that passenger interference caused the pilot to lose control of the aircraft whereupon it descended in a steep nose-down attitude until it struck the water," the report says. "It is possible the passengers' level of intoxication contributed to their inability to recognize the gravity of the situation and stop the interference in time for the pilot to regain control of the aircraft before impact." The board also noted that the pilot could have refused the charter if he thought the passengers might be drunk enough to be a safety hazard. More...

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Letter of the Weekback to top 

AVMAIL: JUNE 27, 2011

Letter of the Week: Food First

There's been so much hype about biofuels, which are a technology that cannot at present make even a dent in our fossil fuel usage and put enormous pressure on both the ecosystem and food prices. It's time to inject a dose of realism by demonstrating the scale of the issue, so here are some facts and figures, all of which are freely available.

... [You'll have to click through to read the full Letter of the Week.] ...

I'm not anti-biofuels. There should be a place for them in our fuel economy; however, we need to do so in such a way that they will not take food from hungry mouths and drive up food prices. Like it or not, the reality of the situation is that we will be putting fossil fuels in our airplanes for a good while yet until substantial research and development produce viable green energy solutions. Food first, fuel second!

Greg Dolph

Click through to read Greg Dolph's full letter and other communiques from our mailbag.


Southeast Aerospace (SEA)
Southeast Aerospace —
Leading Avionics Resource Now More Effective!

The newly designed industry-leading web site has been released! Get to know all of SEA's services: Part Sales, Repairs, Installations, Special Missions and Engineering. Each online department provides detailed information on services, capabilities, experiences and contact information. Save time and go directly to the resources you need. And, as always, you can find real-time inventory pricing and delivery on the part sales site,
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You!back to top 

How's that aircraft battery holding up for you? Aviation Consumer wants to hear how well your battery has served you season after season. Please take a moment to rave -- or rant -- about it in Aviation Consumer's battery survey. The results will be part of an upcoming article in the magazine that might be just what you need to know before your next battery purchase. Click here to take the survey. More...

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...

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.
Opinion & Commentaryback to top 

Even in Paris, the most romantic city on Earth, romance seems scarce in this harsh and angry age — and yet, the wildly impractical Solar Impulse gave our editor Mary Grady a little hope that passion (and yes, even romance) can be rekindled in the aviation world. Mary explains in her latest post to the AVweb Insider blog. Read more and join the conversation. More...

That's the best way to describe that Southwest Airlines pilot's adolescent rant with a stuck mic catching every embarrassing word. Hey, it happens. On the AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli observes that the lesson to be drawn is that what's said in the cockpit doesn't necessarily stay in the cockpit. Read more and join the conversation. More...

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

If that tornado at Sun 'n Fun in April didn't get your attention, it should have. With EAA AirVenture looming and storms hammering the midwest, it's time to think about portable tiedown systems for the show. In this brief video, AVweb and Aviation Consumer wring out three systems, and the walkaway winner is a product you've never heard of. 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 


AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to PS Air at Eastern Iowa Airport (KCID) in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

AVweb reader Edward Woodson sent us a stirring testimonial to the lengths PS Air goes for their visitors:

I was en route from 10C (Greenwood, Illinois) to GFZ (Greenfield, Iowa) and had [a] complete electrical failure. I was close to CID and landed at precisely 17:00. Upon parking, I told the line guy I had electrical problems and needed maintenance. He ran to maintenance hangar just as they were closing. Two mechanics came over immediately and pulled the cowling off to discover field wire broken to the alternator. They got wire and splicing and had the repair done in 15 minutes. [These guys] had me on my way in 30 minutes and refused any special thanks — and were pleased to be of help even after hours! My aircraft was a T-210, and the date was Friday night, June 17, at 5:00 PM. Great FBO.

Their professionalism and dedication to custoner service is especially noteworthy, including the line guy who ran to get them before they left. I have visited PS Air several times, and, every time, every member of the staff exhibited the same courtesy. One one visit, the owner drove me downtown because their courtesy car [was] not available and I had critical appointment. The customer is first at PS Air CID.

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 


Overheard on ground control frequency at LAX:

Boeing 727 (to a newly introduced Short 330 commuter) :
"Hey, that's a nice looking aircraft."

Short 330 pilot:

Boeing 727:
"When are you going to take it out of the box?"

John K. Lewis
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.

Aviate. Navigate. Communicate.