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Volume 11, Number 20b May 19, 2005

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The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded, Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's NewsWire.

NEXT SPACE RACE UNDERWAY -- ORBIT...
SpaceDev, the California company that built the hybrid rocket motor that drove SpaceShipOne, says it has just about completed its plan for a safe, affordable launch system -- the SpaceDev Dream Chaser -- that could carry six passengers into low earth orbit. CEO Jim Benson said he believes the company can "quickly develop a safe and affordable space transportation system based on existing propulsion technologies and vehicle designs." While the initial target is the space tourism market, SpaceDev says its project also could provide routine, safe and affordable access to the International Space Station for NASA. SpaceDev's plan calls for multiple manned suborbital test flights by 2008, and manned test flights to orbit by 2010. More...

...OR BUY A TICKET TODAY FOR A SUBORBITAL RIDE...
Meanwhile, the race to get passengers into suborbital flight is heating up. Aera Corp. announced last week that tickets are on sale now for seats aboard its Altairis rocket. The company says it is on track to start launching from Florida's Cape Canaveral in December 2006. The Altairis rocket launches vertically, lands horizontally and can carry six passengers and one mission commander. Tickets cost $250,000. Also, former X Prize contender Canadian Arrow announced on Tuesday it is forming a new corporation, PlanetSpace, with a U.S. partner and will be ready to carry passengers within two years. It will also charge a quarter-million per seat. More...

...AS ADVOCATES "BLITZ" WASHINGTON
Meanwhile, troops of "citizen lobbyists" arrived in Washington, D.C., this week to meet with their congressional representatives in search of support for space exploration. The National Space Society Legislative Conference took place Tuesday and Wednesday, with training sessions followed by visits to the Hill. The "blitz" precedes the 2005 International Space Development Conference, which begins today, featuring sessions on space exploration, tourism, science, technology, policy and business. Speakers include Burt Rutan, X Prize founder Peter Diamandis and Transportation Secretary Norm Mineta. More...

IN PRINT AND ONLINE, TRADE-A-PLANE GIVES YOU THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS
Get 24 issues (two years) of Trade-A-Plane for just $24.95 (U.S., standard mail) INCLUDING the web edition. Subscribe by calling (800) 337-5263 and mentioning this AVflash, or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/tap/avflash.

ADIZ-INCURSION, PUBLIC PERCEPTION...
If the wanderings of a Cessna 150 would disrupt the day of thousands of people, and frighten them a bit in the process, could it happen in any worse place than Washington, D.C.? Concerned about the lingering effects of that scare on all those legislators and regulators, AOPA took out full-page ads in yesterday's USA Today and in Roll Call, an influential Capitol Hill newspaper, to spread the good word that GA is not a threat. "Last week one pilot made headlines ... The other 588,656 did not," says AOPA. Chris Dancy, AOPA spokesman, told AVweb, "The ad is intended not to excuse or explain what happened, but to help the non-flying public (and members of Congress) to put the incident into perspective." More...

...AS LASER "FENCE" READIES FOR DEBUT
Meanwhile, the new ground-based Visual Warning System around the D.C. ADIZ is ready to deploy on Saturday. The system signals pilots who intrude into the no-fly zone with low-level laser beams in an alternating red-red-green light sequence. Any pilots who receive the warning must immediately turn away from the signal and contact Air Traffic Control. The lasers are eye-safe and non-hazardous at all ranges, according to NORAD (the North American Aerospace Defense Command), which developed the system. Civil Air Patrol (CAP) volunteers flying low-and-slow single-engine Cessnas have been working with NORAD in test flights. More...

ADD CELL/SATELLITE PHONE INTERFACE TO YOUR LIGHTSPEED HEADSET!
Factory conversions are now available for all active models of LightSPEED's XL and QFR series for only USD $75. (No sales tax; return shipping included within the U.S.) Model upgrades come with a 2.5mm patch cord that connects to most phones. Check LightSPEED's online chart for phones they've tested. The Active model upgrades also include an additional patch cord for a personal audio device input. Call LightSPEED at (800) 332-2421 and mention this AVflash, or print out the online order/instruction form to send in your headset for a speedy turnaround — at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/litspeed/cell/avflash.

PUT AVWEB'S HALF-MILLION DAILY HITS TO WORK FOR YOU
AVweb users can now offer their aircraft, parts, and accessories for sale on General Aviation's most popular web site -- with our new and improved Classified Ads section. To better qualify sellers and limit the number of non-aviation products on AVweb, we've instituted a nominal fee for each listing. Discover our new Classified section and get in on the ground floor of this exciting new marketplace. Browse our listings and place your ad today at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/classifieds/avflash. More...

REPORT CALLS FOR MORE AVIATION FUNDING
Aviation is not only an important part of the U.S. economy, it's critical to the growth of the economy as whole, according to a new report released last week by the FAA's Management Advisory Council. "Part of the productivity of virtually every sector of the U.S. economy depends on the productivity of aviation," the report says. The report calls on the White House and Congress for more funding, no new aviation taxes, faster hiring of new air traffic controllers and more investment in ATC modernization. As for the FAA, it needs to streamline -- cutting its current nine administrative regions down to three, contracting out all of its VFR control towers, and consolidating TRACONs, the report says. More...

AVIDYNE'S CMAX™ APPROACH CHARTS TAKE SITUATIONAL AWARENESS TO THE NEXT LEVEL
CMax™ Approach Charts, which can be displayed on Avidyne's FlightMax EX500 or Entegra/EX5000 MFDs, provide geo-referenced approach charts and airport diagrams. CMax™ reduces the amount of paper in your cockpit, and allows you to access critical chart data more quickly and easily. CMax™ overlays your flight plan and aircraft position for optimum orientation. CMax™ even shows runway incursion hotspots and improves taxiway awareness, reducing the need for "progressives" at unfamiliar airports. With CMax™, you’ll know exactly where you are on the approach or on the field. http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avidyne/avflash.

CONTROLLERS HONORED FOR SAVING LIVES
With budget cuts, the threat of looming mass retirements and an ever-growing air traffic system, attention is drawn to how the skills of an air traffic controller measure up when it comes to safety in the skies. Multiple court cases highlight the critical nature of controller/pilot communications, and at least one has saddled controllers with partial blame in an accident (and saddled the FAA with the bill). But controllers also save lives, according to the National Air Traffic Controllers Association's new "Medal of Safety" award. Monday in Washington, D.C., 12 controllers who helped pilots (and passengers) avert disaster were honored for their work. Ken Hopf helped a distraught passenger land a Piper Malibu safely in Laconia, N.H., after the pilot became incapacitated. Scott Dittamo was working the tower in Newark when he spotted a 747 on short final with its gear up. His warning assured a safe landing. Transcripts and audiotapes of the pilot-controller exchanges are available online. More...

JET HAS DRINK AT ATLANTIC CITY
Sometimes the rules are there for a reason ... as the crew of a Citation CJ2 discovered when they flew to Atlantic City's Bader Field on Sunday afternoon, made one aborted approach, circled around to try for the longer runway, then ran off the runway's end and plunged into the (luckily) shallow waters that (practically) surround the downtown field. The small airport, where the longest runway is 2,900 feet, is off-limits to jet traffic. The four people on board escaped with minor injuries and were fished from the water by boaters. The jet and its four occupants are from Denmark, and were returning to Atlantic City from a trip to Burlington, Vt. It was unclear if they were actually headed for Atlantic City International Airport, about nine miles inland from Bader Field, where the runways are up to 10,000 feet long. The captain told the FAA that he was making a "routine touchdown" when the brakes failed, Newsday reported. At least one witness said he saw the tires smoking as the jet went off the runway. More...

PROTECT & SHINE YOUR AIRCRAFT WITH A NAME YOU KNOW & TRUST — AEROSHELL
AeroShell Flight Jacket products are specifically designed for general aviation aircraft. The AeroShell Flight Jacket Kit Bag contains all six AeroShell Flight Jacket Polish and Cleaners, along with the application pad and cleaning cloths. To order the best in shine and protection for your aircraft, go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/shell/avflash.

1999 AIRLINE CRASH DEBATED IN COURT
The 1999 crash of an American Airlines MD-82 in Little Rock, Ark., in which 11 people died (including the flight's captain) is under debate in federal court this week. A lawsuit by the captain's widow alleges that the airport was negligent, because the approach light system that the jet ran into was too close to the runway and too rigid, and the overrun was less than half of the 1,000 feet it should have been. The airport's defense is that the pilot's actions caused the crash. The NTSB found the probable cause of the accident to be the flight crew's failure to discontinue the approach when severe thunderstorms had moved into the airport area, and the crew's failure to ensure that the spoilers had extended after touchdown. More...

ANOTHER NEW FAA TYPE CERTIFICATE -- FOR SYMPHONY 160
The FAA is never quick to hand out Type Certificates, but there seem to be a lot of them coming along lately. Newest on the list of good-to-go GA aircraft is the two-seater Symphony 160, built by Symphony Aircraft Industries (SAI) of Three Rivers, Quebec. "Receiving the Symphony 160's FAA type certificate is a significant milestone," said SAI President Paul Costanzo. "The U.S. market is of great importance for Symphony Aircraft Industries. With the FAA Type Certificate in hand there are no more obstacles, and American pilots can start taking delivery of their new U.S.-registered SA 160." More...

PILOTS — EVEN BIRDS HAVE TO WALK SOMETIMES!
No matter how many hours you log in the air, eventually you're going to be walking on terra firma. You can make walking, running, and even standing for extended periods dramatically more comfortable with Oregon Aero™ ShockBlockers™ insole inserts. Oregon Aero has put its expertise in eliminating pain and improving impact protection to work in creating ShockBlockers™. Oregon Aero™ ShockBlockers™ insole inserts offer 20% more shock absorption, double the supported area under the foot, reduce foot tissue damage by more than 50%, and reduce shock to the entire body compared to other sponge and foam inserts. Select the proper ShockBlockers™ insole inserts for more comfortable walking at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/oregon/avflash.

AIRLINER MAINTENANCE OUTSOURCED OVERSEAS
There's been plenty of talk about outsourcing maintenance work on airliners, with concerns raised about quality control and oversight. And recently there was a roundup of maintenance workers in North Carolina with illegal immigration status, some of them from countries considered possible sources of terrorism. But what about outsourcing the maintenance work overseas? America West and JetBlue have some of their maintenance done in El Salvador, according to a report in last week's ABC11-Eyewitness News in Durham, N.C. Also, Continental and Northwest send some of their planes to Hong Kong or Singapore for maintenance work. More...

ON THE FLY...
NTSB blamed FedEx crash on bad flying, inadequate oversight...
United F/As protest pension cuts in "(semi)naked truth" calendar...
National Aeronautic Association launched new Web site. More...

AVWEB'S NEWSTIPS ADDRESS ...
Drop us a line. Heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about? If it caught your eye, it will probably interest someone else, too. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. More...

EXTENDED HOURS AND ONLINE SERVICES KEEP AVEMCO FIRST
Avemco is the only direct insurer of general aviation aircraft and pilots since 1961. At Avemco, customer service is more than a promise — it's a reality.  With business hours from 8:00am to 7:30pm ET and Saturdays from 10:00am to 6:00pm ET, Avemco insurance counselors are taking calls when other agencies are playing automated recordings.  On top of that, Avemco offers customers the greatest variety of internet services — including quote requests, online payments, and other policy management options.  Regardless of the day or time, Avemco offers the easiest and quickest access to coverage.  Experience customer service the Avemco way by calling (888) 241-7991 or going online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avemco/avflash.

NEW ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
COLUMNS
From The CFI #7: Scenario-Based Training
With new, technically advanced aircraft becoming more common in the air and at FBOs near you, many in the industry have been asking if we need to take a new look at how we train new pilots. AVweb's Linda Pendleton has certianly been asking, and she discusses the kinds of scenarios that work and don't work in this month's From The CFI column. More...

AVWEB'S BUSINESS AVFLASH
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's 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/ More...

DA40 DIAMOND STAR A FLEET FAVORITE
Airline Transport Professionals, Beijing PanAm, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University CAPT, Empire Aviation, Middle Tennessee State University, and Utah Valley State College — all have selected the G1000-equipped DA40 Diamond Star. For value, efficiency, and safety, the DA40 is the fleet favorite. For more information, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/diamond/avflash.

AVWEB'S QUESTION OF THE WEEK ...
This week, AVweb wants to know who you hold responsible for the DC incursion — the pilots or the government? PLUS: Results of last week's question on ADIZ and the incursion. More...

ASO — A BETTER WAY TO SELL YOUR AIRCRAFT SHARE
Finding aircraft share buyers can be hard — FBO bulletin board flyers are too limited, and ads in national publications are too broad. Now there's a better way, with ASO's Partnership Ads. List your share on ASO, the most trusted place for aircraft sales, and interested buyers will have the ability to search geographically to easily find your partnership listing. For a limited time, select Partnership Ads are complimentary. Get your share in front of potential buyers tomorrow by calling (888) 992-9276 today, or visit http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/aso/partner/avflash.

AVWEB'S PICTURE OF THE WEEK ...
Wha—? Where are all the pictures this week? Is everyone O.K. out there? Not that we're complaining, but this has been the slowest week for "POTW" submissions in well over a year. (If you don't count Christmas, AirVenture, and Sun 'n Fun, when submissions typically slack off.) Quite frankly, we're a little worried about our photographer friends. Send us some pictures and check in! Thankfully, those who did submit pics this week turned in some gorgeous photos — like our winning FJ-4B Fury pic from Rich Sugden of Wyoming. Naturally, Rich will be covering his head this summer with an official AVweb baseball hat for his efforts. Our other winners will have to settle for the fleeting fame of being "POTW" contenders — along with the oohs and ahhs of a few hundred thousand aviation buffs who read AVweb. More...

Sponsor News and Special Offers

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SHOPPING DEALS  
GAMI CUSTOMERS RAVE ABOUT A SMOOTHER RIDE AND SAVING FUEL
"The first ground runs were with the original injectors, then we installed the GAMIs. I didn't need the EDM 700 to tell me I had spent my money wisely. The motor is notably smoother and more responsive, with mixture totally controllable." "I put my GAMIs in my 470 and love them. I run LOP; couldn't before. My airplane uses less fuel on a trip than some SUVs!" To check out GAMIs for your airplane, go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/gami/avflash.
ASA BRINGS YOU A LIFETIME OF HANDS-FREE COMMUNICATIONS
ASA's new portable push-to-talk switch works with any general aviation headset, intercom, and radio. It features a low-profile ergonomic button, superior contact switch, heavy-duty gold-plated plugs and jack, durable shield-coiled cord, hook and loop mounting strap, molded strain relief, and a lifetime warranty. Eliminate the distraction of picking up the microphone, keep your focus on flying the aircraft, and modernize your interior with the sleek functional design. For complete details about this new product, visit ASA's web site at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/asadirect/avflash.
SEE WHAT ATC SEES — AND THEN SEE WHAT THEY DO WITH IT
The AVweb Edition of Flight Explorer is the PC-based graphical aircraft situation display that gives a real-time picture of all IFR aircraft in-flight over the U.S. and Canada. Whether you're tracking a friend or want to learn more about the system in action, Flight Explorer has the information you need for just $9.95 a month. Go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/flightexplorer/avflash.
FED UP WITH BIG BILLS FOR ROUTINE AIRCRAFT MAINTENANCE?!
Subscribe to Light Plane Maintenance and join the thousands of savvy general aviation owners who are saving big by doing-it-themselves! Each monthly issue brings you tips and techniques for maintenance procedures you can perform yourself legally and easily. Order now for big savings off the regular rates at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/lpm/avflash.
PHOTON'S WHITE FREEDOM MICRO NOW 2X BRIGHTER!
Photon, the first name in LED micro-lights, has a new product for your flying, hunting, and outdoor needs.  The white Freedom Micro, already one of the brightest micro-lights available, is now a full 2X brighter, making it hands-down the brightest single-LED keychain light in production! Order yours today and save!  SPECIAL: $10 off any Photon order of $75 or more at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/photon/avflash.
AIRSPORT AVIONICS OFFERS A $100 DISCOUNT & COMPLIMENTARY SHIPPING
AirSport Avionics is the only manufacturer of Altitude Alerters that work by listening to everything your transponder and encoder are reporting to ATC, both Mode A (squawk code) and Mode C (altitude). A double benefit! AirSport Alerters are completely portable and don't require permanent installation. SPECIAL: $100 discount on all models, with complimentary ground shipping. Order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/airsport/avflash.
HASSLE-FREE AUTO BUYING FROM CREWCAR & CONSUMER GUIDES
Don't go blindly into a dealership when purchasing a vehicle; look to CrewCar. CrewCar is a car-buying service providing shoppers with a complimentary integrated phone and electronic concierge-level buying service offering value nationwide. The service is provided gratis and meets the Consumer Guide dealership network standards. For more information, visit CrewCar at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/crewcar/avflash.
CFIs — DISCOVER THE SECRETS TO SUCCESS IN GREG BROWN'S CLASSIC BOOK
The Savvy Flight Instructor. You passed the challenging CFI checkride, but what about all those "other" flight instructing questions — how to recruit flight students; how to keep them flying; how to optimize your pass rate on checkrides; and how to get students to return for advanced ratings? Find the answers in The Savvy Flight Instructor by Greg Brown, AOPA Flight Training columnist and 2000 Flight Instructor of the Year. AVweb EXCLUSIVE: Order your personally autographed copy of the book at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/paperjet/avflash.
SPONSOR NEWS
AVIATION CONSUMER HAS GARMIN & LOWRANCE SHOOT IT OUT OVER PORTABLE GPSs
in the June issue. Also in this issue: "The Diesel Dilemma" — Diamond's composite twin diesel-powered aircraft; "Hangar Tugs" — Aviation Consumer likes Northwest and Skyline; "T-34S Under the Gun" — how the industry might establish practical life limits for certain airframes; "JPI's Data Blunder" — owners steamed; and the Used Aircraft Guide highlights Grumman/American General's Tiger. Be in the know with your Aviation Consumer subscription at money-saving rates. Order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avcons/avflash.
THOUGHT THAT USING GPS WOULD BE FUN, DIDN'T YOU?
Then you went through the manual and came away frustrated and confused. Stop laboring to understand those manufacturers' manuals! For less than $40 (plus shipping and handling) you can better understand and operate most of the modern GPS units on the market with ZD Publishing's Pilot Friendly GPS Manuals. GPS operation is fun and rewarding when you understand how to get the desired results. These manuals will help you through all operations. Order at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/zdpub/avflash.
AVWEB IS EXPANDING ITS READER SURVEY PANEL
If you're willing to answer (very) brief questionnaires about aviation products and services once or twice a month, please consider joining our exclusive panel of reader advisors.  We're currently seeking pilots at all levels of experience in many different FAA regions.  To apply, visit http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/readerpanel/avflash.
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AVflash is a twice-weekly summary of the latest aviation news, articles, products, features and events featured on AVweb, the Internet's Aviation Magazine and News Service. http://www.avweb.com

Letters to the editor intended for publication in AVmail should be sent to mailto:editor@avweb.com.com. Have a comment or question? Send it to mailto:newsteam@avweb.com.

Today's issue written by News Writer Mary Grady:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#mgrady
AVweb's editorial team: http://avweb.com/contact/authors.html.

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