The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded,
Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's
DRUGS" ON THE WAY
A new generation of, uh, performance-enhancing drugs -- nicknamed
"V!agra for the mind" -- is in the works, and drug companies already are
looking at pilots as a potential market. According to a report in theage.com, some in the industry are predicting
these so-called "smart drugs," which dramatically improve memory, could
be on the market in five to 10 years. "If [the drug] proves safe and
effective, it could ultimately be used by people who want to learn a
language or a musical instrument or even in schools," said Tim Tully, a
professor of genetics at Cold
Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York. More...
DRUG SHOWN TO BOOST COCKPIT PERFORMANCE...
Scientists already have experimented on pilots with drugs available
today, to see if they can make us better, more alert and more
responsive. Of particular note is a test done at Stanford University in 2002 with donepezil, which is widely used to ease the memory
loss of Alzheimer patients. It found that pilots taking donepezil
performed better in tests in a Cessna 172 simulator than those given a
placebo, and that the drug-taking pilots were particularly superior at
landing and maintaining a scan of the panel. More...
"GO PILLS" FUEL MILITARY PILOTS
Of course, drugs in the cockpit are nothing new. U.S. Air Force flight
surgeons frequently supply amphetamines to pilots for long flights and
in demanding combat situations -- a practice not without controversy.
Also known as "speed," and, in the military, as "go pills," amphetamines
are considered essential by some in the military to maintaining a
top-notch fighting force. Their use was not publicly well-known until
the drugs were implicated in a friendly-fire incident in Afghanistan in
2002, in which an American F-16 pilot mistakenly dropped a laser-guided
bomb on Canadian soldiers, killing four of them. More...
RECONDITIONED 25XLs AVAILABLE FROM LIGHTSPEED
When new, these headsets had a list price of $599.
Now, for a limited time, you can buy reconditioned 25XLs for $350. Most
of these headsets come to us from pilots who have upgraded to LightSPEED
Thirty 3G headsets. All have new ear seals and head pads and are
upgraded and tested to current factory specifications. In addition, they
are backed by LightSPEED's 30-day money-back guarantee, one-year
warranty, and the LightSPEED emphasis on customer service and
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for more information and to purchase an R25XL http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/litspeed/r25xls/avflash.
Britain has set strict blood-alcohol limits for airline and air
traffic personnel, changing a longstanding law that simply made it
illegal for them to work if they were alcohol-impaired. Pilots, cabin
crew and controllers now will be breaking the law if found with more
than .02 percent alcohol in their systems, which is the lowest point at
which tests are reliable. Mechanics could theoretically nip down to the
pub for lunch and still legally do their jobs, however. Their limit is
set at .08 percent, the same as the legal driving limit in Britain. The
government explained the difference by saying that mechanics aren't
required to react to emergencies with the same speed as flight crews.
NOT THE ONLY ANSWER...
Now, the law can only do so much to keep impaired people earthbound, as
authorities in Pennsylvania found out in the now-infamous case of pilot
John Salamone. Salamone, you'll remember, lost his certificate and
surrendered his medical after allegedly flying erratically in
Philadelphia International's busy airspace. On Tuesday, a judge said
Salamone will stand trial on charges of risking a catastrophe and
reckless endangerment. He won't be charged with flying drunk, though,
although his blood-alcohol level was allegedly twice the legal limit for
driving, because Pennsylvania has no law against flying drunk. Some
officials, however, have said the case raises even bigger concerns than
a lack of sobriety laws, because it revealed troubling flaws in the
emergency-response system. More...
YET ANOTHER AIRLINE PILOT DETAINED
As the British put the official seal on their new alcohol limits, an
Aloha Airlines first officer was detained after allegedly trying to go
to work with what the Associated Press is reporting as a blood-alcohol
level of .182. That's about the level reached by a 180-pound man who drinks eight
12-ounce beers in one hour. The unidentified pilot, who was scheduled to
fly from Oakland to Hawaii on Saturday morning, was detained by police
after a security screener allegedly smelled alcohol as he passed through
the checkpoint. The pilot has been suspended pending the investigation.
CAN BE A WINNER WITH SCHEYDEN, AVIATION'S FINEST EYEWEAR
surprised that I won and even more surprised at the quality of these
glasses!" said recent AVweb winner Ted Weiner of Massachusetts. A pair
of Scheydens will be given away every other week to a lucky AVweb winner
a retail value up to $395! The unique flip-up design has become
the choice of pilots who demand quality and function in every aspect of
aviation. Handmade titanium frames, quality lenses, a Rosewood case,
plush micro-fiber bag and cloth are standard equipment on all styles.
For more information (and to register to win), go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/scheyden/avflash.
WOULD MANDATE MISSILE DEFENSE FOR AIRLINES
A bill that would promote the development of defenses to protect
commercial aircraft from shoulder-launched missiles was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives on
Tuesday. The bill, H.R.
4056, would require the FAA to speed up certification of
anti-missile systems at the same time it encourages the government to
take steps to stop the proliferation of the portable weapons. Rep. John
Mica (R-Fla.), chairman of the House Aviation Subcommittee, told CNN the
government might require missile-defense systems as standard equipment
on new airliners. The bill would ask the president to pursue
international treaties and agreements to stop the spread of the cheap,
easily concealed launchers. More...
AIRLINE BANNED FROM FRANCE
France banned Egyptian carrier Luxor Air after the pilot of an MD-83 flew low and
off course while on approach to the Nantes Airport last Sunday. The
plane reportedly descended to about 660 feet over the city, below the
level of some of the taller buildings, and was about a mile off course.
The aircraft landed safely on its second attempt, and none of the 104
passengers or 10 crew members were hurt. The crew reportedly rushed to
leave Nantes quickly afterwards. France's Civil Aviation Authority is
investigating the incident. Luxor Air is a small, privately owned
MAN JUMPS FROM STEARMAN
A suicidal man, who asked for a ride in an open-cockpit biplane for his
88th birthday, jumped to his death Monday near San Diego. Joseph Harold
Frost, who was recently diagnosed with a brain tumor, got out of the
Stearman despite the best efforts of pilot Willis Allen to restrain him.
The elderly passenger removed his safety belt and stood up in the seat
in front of Allen, who tried to wrestle him back to safety. Allen also
pitched the plane up to try and force Frost back in his seat. They were
about 300 to 400 feet above the ground, on approach to Gillespie Field,
when Frost managed to jump. "I think that was Dad's idea, to go out in a
flash of glory," his son, Robert Frost, told CNN. More...
REVIEWS FLIGHT OPS AFTER CRASHES
The Navy has ordered a review of its flight safety and maintenance
operations after it lost about $150 million in hardware last week. Four
fighters -- three F/A-18 Hornets and an F-14 -- were destroyed in
separate incidents. All crews ejected safely, although two pilots
suffered minor injuries, and no one on the ground was hurt. The F-14
Tomcat went into the ocean two miles off the West Coast near San Diego,
about 11 a.m. local time on Monday. Also on Monday, a Hornet crashed in
an unpopulated area near Chattanooga, Tenn. Last Wednesday, an F/A-18
ditched off the South Carolina coast, and another crashed during takeoff
on Friday at Raleigh-Durham Airport in North Carolina.
TOURIST HAS SCIENTIFIC AGENDA
The next space tourist doesn't intend to just kick back in the
weightlessness for a week. Gregory Olsen is a New York scientist who
made his fortune with optics inventions. He's packing a bag full of
infrared sensors with him to do some research of his own during his $20
million visit to the International Space Station. "I feel this is a way
of paying back," said Olsen, who told the Associated Press he will use
his high-tech gear to analyze pollution in the Earth's atmosphere and
research the health of agricultural systems on the ground. His eight-day
adventure is scheduled for April 2005, but could be moved up to this
October. Like the two preceding space tourists, Dennis Tito and Mark
Shuttleworth, Olsen will ride a Soviet Soyuz rocket to the space
CHARGED AFTER BOGUS RADIO CALLS
An Australian youth might be looking for a less dangerous pastime after
he was charged last week with making hoax radio calls to aircraft and
the tower at Perth Airport. Scott Bradley Pike, 19, of the Perth suburb
of Lynwood, was charged with a single count of using a transmitter in a
way likely to interfere with radio communications. The Australian
Federal Police allege Pike made bogus radio calls on radio control
frequencies over two days earlier this month. The transmissions were
allegedly purported to be from aircraft seeking clearances to enter
controlled airspace, land and cross active runways. The police also
allege some of the calls contained threats to the safety of aircraft.
Pike will be back in court in April. More...
GETTING THE MOST OUT OF THE AIRCRAFT IN YOUR
TimeSync's ScheduleMaster online aircraft scheduling
service offers advanced features such as standby scheduling and
notification of cancellations. ScheduleMaster helps your club improve
aircraft utilization and will make your members happy. You can also add
AccountMaster, an integrated billing system that works with Peachtree
and QuickBooks. For a no-obligation online demonstration, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/timesy/avflash.
Arthur Hawkins, former WWII ace and Blue Angel, died at age 81...
Foolproof system needed to prevent friendly-fire deaths, pilot
Site found for airmail pilots monument, at stamp collectors' hq.
ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
Say Again? #35: Lessons Unlearned
The National Airspace System has lots of redundancies; and some would
say that takes more effort than is necessary. Why fly on airways when
direct can be faster? Why read back the entire clearance or radio
frequency change when you can just give your callsign? AVweb's Don Brown
tells of a time when a perfect storm of at least 11 separate, small
errors built up to bring two planes mere feet from each other at high
MARV GOLDEN DISCOUNT PILOT SUPPLIES HAS EVERYTHING YOU
Marv Golden Discount Pilot Supplies is your one-stop
pilot shop for everything from avionics to watches. APRIL
SPECIALS: The new Sennheiser HME 100MG (Michael Goulian) limited
edition headset is ready for shipping; orders are being taken for the
new Garmin 296 with shipping late April; and purchase any Icom standard
transceiver and receive a complimentary alkaline battery pack. For all
your pilot supplies, plus Mother's and Father's Day gifts galore, visit
Marv Golden online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/marvgold/avflash.
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVwebs NO-COST twice monthly Business
AVflash? Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash also focuses on
the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines
in the Business of Aviation. Business AVflash is a must read. Watch for
a Business AVflash regular feature, TSA WATCH: GA IN THE "SPOTLIGHT".
Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/
QUESTION OF THE WEEK ...
AVweb wants to know which air shows you'll be attending in 2004. Plus:
Results of last week's question on bird strikes and wildlife hazards in
the air. More...
OF THE WEEK...
Beautiful landscapes, historical aircraft, exciting aerobatics
just some of the things you won't see in this week's "Picture of the
Week." Why? Because we had too many good photos to squeeze them all in!
And if you're enticed by the photos we had to pass over, just wait until
you see the ones that made the cut especially this week's contest
winner, a breath-taking Cougar photo by the Netherlands' Captain H.J.
van Gasteren. More...
Sponsor News and Special Offers
Access to AVweb and AVflash is provided by the
support of our fine sponsors. We appreciate your patronage.
FLIGHTMAX EX500 WITH INTEGRATED DATALINK-TRAINING SOFTWARE
Avidyne's FlightMax EX500 provides the best
value MFD/Datalink solution available for G.A. And it's the easiest to
use. To prove it, Avidyne has put together a new FlightMax EX500 trainer
which allows you to "fly" user-defined flight plans and retrieve
"datalinked" graphical weather and TFRs all along the route and
randomly access virtually all pages and functions of the EX500, just as
you would on the real product. See the FlightMax EX550 at Sun 'n Fun Booth #D-043-044, or download your
no-cost EX500 Training Software at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avidyne/avflash.
SUBSCRIBE TO FLIGHT EXPLORER AVWEB EDITION 4.02 FOR JUST
$9.95 A MONTH!
The latest edition of this real-time
flight-tracking display of all IFR aircraft in-flight includes enhanced
tracking of individual flights; surface overlays; terrain and elevation
maps; and full-screen mode for a larger picture on your PC. To subscribe
at the AVweb member rate of just $9.95 a month, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/flightexplorer/avflash.
YOUR CELL PHONE CAN SURF THE NET, IT CAN RECEIVE AVIATION
WxServer works with virtually any internet-enabled
phone. No matter whether you're using Verizon, SprintPCS, AT&T,
T-Mobile, Cingular, or Nextel, WxServer can give you up-to-the-minute
aviation weather information. SPECIAL OFFER: This month, AVweb
readers receive $10 off the regular annual subscription rates, and CFIs
can sign up for the WxServer referral program at no charge! Check it out
ANNOUNCES INTERACTIVE NAV & VOR/NDB SIMULATOR TRAINING
Comm 1 Radio Simulator programs contain comprehensive
tutorials and fully interactive two-way radio exchanges with ATC
which you can experience from the safety and privacy of your computer.
Build skills and confidence on the ground while saving money and
aggravation. Select the programs right for your flying needs by visiting
Sun 'n Fun Booth #C-061, or order
online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/comm1/avflash.
OFFERING "AVWEB ONLY" SPECIALS & SUN 'N FUN DISCOUNTS
Publishers is offering during April a 15% discount on the 2004 FAR/AIM
and their flight bag, plus 10% off all Pilot Kits. Check out Gleim's
online Private Pilot Refresher and Flight Instructor Refresher Courses.
All course students receive a no-cost 2004 FAR/AIM, a $21 value. Stop by
Gleim Publishers' Sun 'n Fun Booth
(#B37-38) for show discounts and tell them how you
appreciate their AVweb special deals. Gleim's April AVweb deals can be
found at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/gleim/avflash.
SQUEEZE, BANG, BLOW, MAKE IT GO WITH POWER FLOW EXHAUST
Your Cessna, Mooney, Piper, or Grumman airplane
deserves a Power Flow Tuned Exhaust System. Power Flow guarantees your
plane will repay you by performing better than you ever expected! For
those who already have the Power Flow Tuned Exhaust System, order your
exhaust shield! Go by Sun 'n Fun Booth
#A-044 to see the real deal Power Flow or order
online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/power/avflash.
NEW PHOTON FREEDOM MICRO-LIGHTS ARE IN STOCK AND READY TO
Photon's NEW Freedom Micro is the easiest to use, most
powerful full-featured micro-light available. Intuitive single-button
operation, increased water resistance, convenience, and rock-solid
reliability with a full-range brightness control and five safety modes.
No cockpit or home should be without a micro-light. SPECIAL:
Order the Freedom Micro at $19.95 and receive a no-cost hands-free
Photon clip (a $4.95 value). See Photon's Freedom Micro (and other
Micro-Light models) at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/photon/avflash.
ROD MACHADO GETS THE NICEST LETTERS FROM THE NICEST PEOPLE
"Thank you for Rod Machado's Private
Pilot Handbook. Understandable text for students to learn and fire
up their minds' magnetos." signed, New Pilot. "The only textbook
the kids have really enjoyed and read." Louisville H.S. teacher.
"Rod Machado's Private Pilot Handbook is the best book ever for
pilots and pilots-to-be." CFII. Visit Sun
'n Fun Booth #B-044-045 to see all Rod's books, tapes, and
DVDs, or order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/machado/avflash.
MONOXIDE KILLS! SAFETY IS CO GUARDIAN'S CARBON MONOXIDE
CO Guardian has models from portable units to
panel-mount units. Each unit's solid-state sensors and temperature
sensors (EMI-shielded to prevent radio interference) are built in the
USA and FAA-certified. To see all of CO Guardian's models, stop by
Sun 'n Fun Booth #D-060, or go online
to find the CO Guardian model right for your aircraft at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/cog/avflash.
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