| Free Sign Up | Site Map | What's New | HELP! |
Advanced Search

Free Sign Up
Flight Explorer
• AVmail
• Brainteasers
• Calendar
• Classifieds
• Databases
• Net Sites
• Picture of the Week
• Question of the Week
• Short Final
• Weather
• What's New
• Aeromedical
• Airmanship
• Aviation Law
• Avionics
• Careers
• Columns
• Homebuilts
• Insurance
• Maintenance
• New Aircraft
• Places to Fly
• Profiles
• Reviews
• Safety
• Skywritings
• The System
• Training
• Used Aircraft
Special Events
• Advertise
• Contact Us
• Flight Explorer
• Help Desk
• Site Map
• Shopping Directory
• Sponsor Specials
• Sponsors
Printer-Friendly Version

November 13, 2005

NewsWire Complete Issue

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by ... Sporty's Pilot Shop


Headset Companion allows the use of all your favorite audio devices in the airplane while still enjoying the noise-canceling capabilities of your headset.  Pilots can use their cell phone on the ground to pick up clearances, cancel flight plans, or receive audio alerts from GPS units.  Passengers can interface portable CD/DVD or MP3 players, satellite radio, or gaming systems. See the Headset Companion and all Sporty's pilot products at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/sportys/avflash.

Airbus And Boeing In Very Public Competition...

Airbus A380 Flies To Asia

Airbus took its new A380 behemoth on a jaunt last week from France to Asia and Australia. The tour, which continues through this Friday, began with a 12-hour nonstop flight to Singapore. The crew checked the width of taxiways and runways and tested out a new passenger boarding bridge. Airport workers and officials got tours of the airplane. Singapore Airlines will be the first to fly the A380 on commercial routes, starting in late 2006. The airplane then flew into Brisbane and Sydney over the weekend, where it was greeted by crowds of thousands and helped to celebrate the 85th anniversary of Qantas. It will also stop in Melbourne, then fly on to Kuala Lumpur before heading back to France. The double-decker airplane also won a "Best of What's New" award from Popular Science magazine, and is featured in Robb Report's annual "Ultimate Gifts" issue. According to Robb Report, for just $363 million you can have your own personalized A380, complete with a formal dining area, a Jacuzzi for two and beds for 22 overnight guests.

...As Boeing Sets Nonstop Record...

Meanwhile, Boeing established a new world record for distance traveled nonstop by a commercial airplane last week, in its new 777-200LR Worldliner. The airliner flew 11,664 nautical miles -- more than halfway around the world. It took off from Hong Kong the evening of Nov. 9, and landed at London Heathrow Airport 22 hours and 42 minutes later, at 1:30 p.m. local time. The airplane traveled eastbound, flying over the North Pacific Ocean, across North America and then over the mid-north Atlantic Ocean en route to London. "The performance of the 777-200LR during the record flight was exceptional," said Suzanna Darcy-Hennemann, the project pilot leader for the flight. The trip was flown by a team of four pilots who took turns resting and flying. The record was previously held by a 747-400 that flew 9,200 nautical miles nonstop from London to Sydney in 1989. In service, the 777-200LR can carry 301 passengers and baggage up to 9,420 nautical miles. The first 777-200LR will be delivered to Pakistan International Airlines in early 2006. To date, 43 airlines around the world have ordered more than 700 777s, according to Boeing.

...And New Technology Trickles Down

Boeing also is hard at work on its new 787 Dreamliner, which takes composite construction to new lengths for airliners. And following that lead, upstart Spectrum unveiled its all-composite bizjet project at NBAA's big shindig last week in Orlando (if you missed our BizAvFlash coverage on Friday, check it out online...complete with exclusive interviews). The company, headed by ex-Beechcraft honcho Linden Blue, already has secretly constructed a prototype of its Model 33, and expects to be flying by the end of this year. The entire airframe, the control surfaces and even the rods that connect the sidestick controller to the ailerons are all constructed entirely of advanced new proprietary composite materials, the company says. Spectrum is using a proprietary composite material branded as FibeX, a carbon-fiber/epoxy laminate that, similar to the material used in the 787, features "grid stiffening" rather than the honeycomb core stiffening common in most aircraft composite materials. The result is a light, simple, strong and durable airframe manufactured to precise tolerances, according to the company's Web site. The lightweight construction means the Spectrum 33 will complete a typical 1,000-mile flight using 40 to 50 percent less fuel than its nearest competitor, the company says.

Enjoy an unmatched combination of benefits:  Full-spectrum noise reduction, clear sound, and comfortable fit.  Purchase by 12/31/05 and receive an INOVA® T2™ Tactical LED flashlight as our gift to you.  Use the Bose Payment Plan. Learn more and order at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/bose/avflash.

Aviation Nation Remembers...

Veterans Honored With Air Show

At the Aviation Nation air show in Las Vegas over the weekend, Veterans Day was honored with a special tribute to those who served in Vietnam. Saturday's show featured a Vietnam-era air power re-enactment with an AC-47 Spooky gunship and the simulated rescue of downed pilots by three UH-1 Huey helicopters. Shows by the F/A-22 Raptor fighter-attack jet and the red, white and blue F-16 Falcons of the Thunderbirds also were dedicated to the veterans. The show attracted crowds of over 125,000 over the weekend. On a much smaller scale, two pilots from the Missouri National Guard's 1st Battalion, 135th Aviation, at Whiteman Air Force Base, flew an AH-64 Apache helicopter to the Mineral Area Elks Lodge, where the annual Veterans Day dinner was being held. And in California, a group of Vietnam vets near Fresno are working to create an aviation museum devoted to the era. They have obtained a surplus Huey helicopter and are working to build a hangar for it and create the Army Aviation Museum of the West.

...As GA Gives A Lift To WWII Vets

Meanwhile, a group of volunteer GA pilots in Ohio is working to help the aging veterans of World War II travel to Washington, D.C., to see the memorial in their honor. Making the trip to the capital can be a hardship for many vets -- due either to infirmity or finances, or both. Honor Flight, which started last year, flies veterans from Ohio to D.C. in GA aircraft, for free, once a month. So far the group has flown 132 veterans, and there is a waiting list of 257 more. Earl Morse, a retired Air Force captain who started the project, recently quit his job to work on it full-time. "You get bitten by this, and you can't think of anything else," Morse told The Associated Press. "The window itself is good for another five to 10 years. After that, it's going to be a moot point because they're all going to be gone. This is their last hurrah." Of the 16 million Americans who served in WWII armed forces, 3.5 million are still alive. An estimated 7 million people have visited the WWII Memorial since it opened in 2004. Honor Flight volunteer pilots have come from Ohio, Indiana, Michigan and North Carolina.

Don't overpay for life insurance just because you are a pilot. Pilot Insurance Center (PIC) specializes in providing pilots — from student to ATP — with premium rates that are not available through other agents. A+ RATED CARRIERS — NO AVIATION EXCLUSIONS — fast and easy application process. For a complimentary quote, call (800) 380-8376 or visit online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/piclife/avflash.

TSA Gets A New Role Model ... The FAA

It may be tough for some aviators to get their minds around the concept that somebody out there considers the FAA a model for how a bureaucracy ought to work ... but to the Homeland Security Committee in the U.S. House, making the Transportation Security Administration look more like the FAA seems to be the way to go. The operational side of the TSA -- the screeners -- should be separate from the policy and regulatory side of the agency, just as the operational side of the FAA -- air traffic controllers -- is separate, Adam Tsao, a committee staff member, said at a meeting of the Regional Airline Association last week, according to Regional Aviation News. The TSA needs to operate more like a business, Tsao said, and try to be efficient and create a climate that would encourage investment from the private sector.

Teenager Starts An Airline In U.K.

Martin Halstead has loved aviation since his first flight at age 6, and now that he's 19, he has his own airline. "I was joking with a friend that as my chances of getting a job in the airline industry were almost nil, I might as well start my own airline," he said. The regional carrier, Alpha One, flew for the first time last Monday, and will start twice-a-day trips between Southampton and the Isle of Man later this month. So far the airline consists of one 18-seat BAE Jetstream 31, with plans to lease another one. Halstead will work as a pilot as well as CEO, and says he has lots of experienced staffers on his team to make up for his own lack of years ... but he's relying largely on his own financing skills. He financed the start-up after selling off a flight-simulator software company he started at age 15. He's been dubbed the "Baby Branson" in the British press, and says he is honored by the comparison ... but he intends to be not the "next" Richard Branson, but the first Martin Halstead.

The most respected new aircraft on the market all choose Continental engines. Bring your aircraft up to speed with a genuine Continental engine. Select from factory-new, factory-rebuilt, or factory-backed overhauls by Mattituck. Add value to your aircraft and the peace-of-mind that you're flying behind the best — Continental. For further details, go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/tcm/avflash.

EAA Discount Deal Could Help Kitfox Builders

When Kitfox kit manufacturer ETG Corp (Skystar Aircraft) declared bankruptcy last month, Kitfox builders were stuck. Some had already ordered and paid for their Rotax engines through the company, but that money never made it to Rotax. Now the chances that they will ever get that money back, or their engines, are slim at best. To help, EAA says it is working out a deal with a Rotax distributor and Sport Plane, of Idaho, to assemble a one-time bulk purchase of engines at a special price. While paying more money to buy an engine they've already paid for may be frustrating for builders, this discount deal may be the best option they have if they want to complete their projects, EAA said. "We knew that several members had received most of their kit and were well along with construction but were being held up waiting on deliveries of parts that Skystar purchased from vendors, typically the engine, landing gear and tailwheel," said Charlie Becker, director of EAA aviation services. "No one likes what happened, but this can at least soften the blow." Under the plan, Sport Plane will serve as the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) supplier for Rotax, place the bulk engine order through Kodiak (the Rotax distributor) and pass along the preferred pricing to the customers, based on the size of the order. For more details, go to the EAA Web site.

EZ-Rocket Aims For XC Record

The folks at XCOR Aerospace, who built the one-of-a-kind EZ-Rocket -- a modified Long-EZ powered by two liquid-fuel rocket engines -- are planning to break a cross-country flight record -- by flying for 10 minutes. The EZ-Rocket will launch from Mojave on Dec. 3 and fly to California City, all of 11 miles away, Space.com reported last week. But apparently that's far enough to set a new record for aircraft in Class C1b Group IV -- a vehicle that is launched from the ground and flies with its rocket engines under control throughout the flight. The EZ-Rocket is a technology demonstrator designed, tested and built by XCOR. It flew at Oshkosh in 2002 and at the Countdown to the X Prize Cup held last month in New Mexico. Dick Rutan is slated to pilot the aircraft for the record attempt. After reaching California City, it will go into a hangar, then fly back to Mojave around Dec. 10. After that, the company plans to retire the ship.


JA Air Center, one of Garmin's largest dealers, would like to thank all customers who pre-ordered the new Garmin GPSMap 396, and we are pleased to announce limited quantities are IN STOCK and ready for immediate delivery. Also, current inventory levels allow JA to offer top dollar for used GPS, avionics, and aircraft.  JA Air Center [Dupage Airport (KDPA) in West Chicago, IL] provides the finest avionics installations, turbine/piston maintenance, avionics/instrument service, mail order, and aircraft sales. Also, they offer FBO services and fuel at Dekalb Taylor Municipal Airport (KDKB) in Dekalb, IL. Please call (800) 323-5966 [after hours, (630) 306-7117] and mention this AVflash, or order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/ja/avflash.

Airliner Missile Defense Systems Tested

BAE Systems and Northrop Grumman have been working to build systems that could defend airliners from shoulder-fired missiles, and last week both companies successfully tested their designs in flight. An American Airlines 767 outfitted with BAE's Jeteye system flew from Fort Worth, Texas, while Grumman's Guardian system was tested Wednesday on an MD-11 that took off from Mojave Airport in California, The Associated Press reported Friday. Both systems use lasers to jam the guidance systems of incoming missiles. Government contracts call for the systems to cost less than $1 million each and to be easier to maintain and more reliable than military versions now in service. The impetus to develop the systems has come from Congress, while the airlines are less enthused, concerned about cost and maintenance issues. "It's a huge expenditure of resources to deal with one type of threat," John Meanen, executive vice president for the Air Transport Association, told the AP. "We have to ask, 'Are there better ways of doing this?'"

3,000 Birds Disrupt Radar

Large flocks of migrating geese are suspected of causing a breakdown in the radar at the St. Louis air traffic control center last Wednesday morning. About 7 a.m., radar screens showed about 3,000 blips, which the system interpreted as 3,000 aircraft. The Airport Surveillance Radar model 9, or ASR-9, became overloaded and crashed, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported last week. Air traffic controllers in Kansas City took over the airspace for about 15 minutes, until St. Louis controllers were able to switch to a backup system. Similar flocks of birds are believed to have caused radar crashes in ASR-9 systems at Kansas City on Nov. 2 and at Boston on Oct. 10. ASR-9 comprises a primary antenna that detects when airplanes have entered the airspace, and a secondary radar that sends signals to the airplane transponder so it can identify the aircraft.


This package offers: Two Primary Flight Displays (EXP5000); a third centrally-mounted Multi-Function Display (EX5000); dual Air Data/Attitude and Heading Reference System (ADAHRS); Multi-Function Display featuring moving map, flight plan information, and EMax Engine Indication System; two Garmin GNS 430 NAV/COMM/GS/GPSs; a Garmin GTX-330 digital transponder with Traffic Information System; S-TEC's System SSX Autopilot; and a Honeywell-Bendix/King RDR-2000 Vertical Profile color radar system for see-and-avoid precipitation.  With these uncompromising features and advanced technology, the New Piper Mirage provides serious sophistication for a higher level of confidence.  For more, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/newpiper/avflash.

You Want A Clearance With That?

It was just a publicity stunt, but the concept of drive-thru fast food from the comfort of your cockpit has stirred a lot of wishful thinking. In Atlanta last Thursday, the captain of an AirTran Airways 737 taxied up to the window of a specially designed Wendy's drive-thru. An honorary "air-food controller" passed carry-on bags of food and drinks through the 737's cockpit window. The stunt launched a promotion offering frequent-flyer mileage credits for soft drinks bought at Wendy's. "If drive-up pharmacies and drive-in wedding chapels can work, the idea of an airplane drive-thru just might take off," said Tad Hutcheson, AirTran Airways vice president of marketing.

On The Fly...

An Indiana inventor on Nov. 1 received a U.S. patent for his design of an antigravity space vehicle, which would theoretically be powered by a superconductor shield that changes the space-time continuum to defy gravity, Nature reported last week. Engineers and physicists have objected to the patent for what they say is an impossible design...

NASA is testing a 12-foot-wide scale model of its blended wing body aircraft design in the Langley wind tunnel in Hampton, Va. During tests, pilots "flew" the 12-foot wingspan, 80-pound model in the tunnel's wind stream, constrained only by a tether cable. The flying wing is the biggest model ever free-flight-tested in the Full Scale Tunnel, NASA said...

Garmin last week announced four-color digital weather radar that interfaces with Garmin's G1000 avionics suite and the Garmin MX-20 MFD...

Spirit Airlines is offering a fare sale with prices as low as $9 for trips out of Dallas, but the sale ends tonight...

A N.J. man pleaded guilty to pointing a laser beam at an airplane; sentencing will be in February...

New Airbus A318 Elite will serve as an entry-level aircraft to the Airbus ACJ family, with space for up to 18 pax.


Air Power is now selling all three manufacturers' products! Only Air Power, the world's largest factory engine distributor, can save you thousands on engines, cylinders, and parts from all three manufacturers! Call Air Power, a totally consumer-oriented company, at (800) 247-7693, or visit Air Power online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/apinc/avflash.

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

Drop us a line. If it caught your attention, it will probably interest someone else, too. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.

New Articles and Features on AVweb

From The CFI #10: What Type Are You?
Ready to move into a jet? No matter how big, all jets require a type rating if you want to fly one. You might think that means they're hard to learn and harder to fly, but usually that isn't true. AVweb's Linda Pendleton explains what it takes to get a type rating.

What's New -- Products and Services
This month AVweb's survey of the latest products and services for pilots, mechanics and aircraft owners brings you floats for all Cessna 172s, panel design software for experimental aircraft, a new Husky aircraft and much more.

In addition to favorable Visa rates, NAA cardholders receive benefits including discounted rates on NAA membership and on aviation products. You may also qualify for no-cost accidental death and dismemberment coverage and aircraft damage reimbursement. NAA, the first national aviation association, receives a contribution from BankOne with every purchase made on the NAA Platinum Visa® card. These contributions help NAA preserve aviation heritage by supporting the presentation of prestigious awards and the certification of national aviation records. For more information, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/naa/visa/avflash.

Reader feedback on AVweb's news coverage and feature articles:

AVmail: November 14, 2005
Reader mail this week about the definition of General Aviation, the future of GA, fuel prices and more.

A new STC has been approved to McCauley Propeller Systems for installation of a new three-bladed propeller.  Replace your old threaded propellers with the new Blackmac propeller.  The Blackmac provides operators with an average weight savings of 10 pounds, longer TBOs, and fewer ADs than other propellers available today.  The Blackmac also comes with a standard three-year warranty.  For more information and an authorized service center near you, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/mccauley/avflash.

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/

Pilot-inspired, German-engineered, and internationally renowned — that's the difference in Extra Aircraft's EA-300 and EA-500. All it takes is one flight in the EA-300, and you'll discover why so many world-champion aerobatic pilots choose Extra. Extra's certified, Rolls Royce-powered, 6-seat turboprop EA-500 is in a class all by itself. The only new technology cabin class airplane, the EA-500 averages 220 kts, gets 11 mpg, and costs less than $200/hr to operate. Find out more about both aircraft at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/extra/avflash.

WingX Version 1.7 for the Pocket PC — it's a flight bag powerhouse! Advanced Weight and Balance with over 400 pre-defined models; A/FD information (frequencies, runway lengths, and more); excellent Route Planning with the latest FAA data; fast access to FARs 1, 43, 61, 91, 119, 141, 830, AC61-65D (endorsements), and more; superb E6B with winds aloft, fuel, and IFR climb calculations; and much more. With Hilton Software's referral program, get $10 back with every referral — with no limit! Don't fumble for frequencies, Morse codes, or FSS phone numbers; check out WingX for the Pocket PC. If you don't have a Pocket PC, Hilton Software will pre-install WingX Pro Edition on a high-performance Dell Axim X50 for you — it's called the WingX Pro Solution! Call Hilton Software at 1 (866) 42-WINGX, and take a look at screen shots and download the demo at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/hilton/avflash.

Short Final...

Clarity in communication...

ATC: N1234 traffic 1 o'clock, 6 miles.

N1234: Right ... uh ... we're in a cloud.

(short pause)

ATC: Then you won't see her.

N1234: Roger. Negative traffic, 234.

Visit AVweb's Holiday Shopping Page

Featuring products and services from AVweb's sponsors — including very special holiday offers!
Sponsor News and Special Offers

Access to AVweb and AVflash is provided by the support of our fine sponsors. We appreciate your patronage.

Do you carry a first-aid kit in your airplane or car?  AVweb's Dr. Brent Blue says drugstore first-aid kits are packed with mostly useless stuff.  Dr. Blue has assembled a traveling medical kit for dealing with all sorts of medical problems, based on his long experience as an emergency room doctor, frequent traveler, pilot, outdoorsman, and dad.  It would cost more than $500 to duplicate this kit, but it's available on sale from Aeromedix for $333.  Order by calling (888) 362-7123, or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/aeromedi/avflash.
Narco Avionics proudly announces the availability of their all-new Value Series plug & play line of digital transponders. The Value Series is designed for the cost-conscious owner. Narco's Value Series plug & play transponders includes the AT165/VS (a replacement for the AT50 through AT155), the AT165/KA/VS (a replacement for the KT76A/78A), and the AT165/K/VS (a replacement for the KT76/78). COMING SOON: Narco's AT165/C and AT165/C/VS, plug & play replacements for the ARC (Cessna) RT359A/RT459A. For more information, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/narco/avflash.
Flying the Legendary DC-3 DVD puts you in the cockpit of one of the world's best-known and best-loved aircraft.  Five cameras and high-quality digital sound allow you to see, hear, and feel what it was like to fly the airliner that made aviation history.  Order your copy online direct from the producer, Rick Searle Productions, at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/ricksearle/avflash.
From master developers for 8.03 acres of mixed-use land at the busy southeast corner of the airport.  GA commercial opportunities could include aircraft maintenance, avionics, charter, aircraft management and rental, restaurants, rental car facilities, or any combination thereof.  A mandatory pre-proposal conference is December 5, 2005.  Contact Dennis Rouleau at (847) 537-2580; or, for the complete RFP, go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/rfp/avflash.
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.
With your subscription to Light Plane Maintenance, you will join thousands of savvy general aviation owners who are saving big by doing it themselves! Each monthly issue brings tips and techniques for maintenance procedures you can perform yourself, legally and easily. Order for big savings from the regular rates at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/lpm/avflash.
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.
"Three Flavors of Ice" — no, not rime, clear, and mixed — horizontal, vertical, and diagonal; "CAT II for the CAT I Pilot" — extras with the differences; "Don't Read the NOTAMS" — a better way; "Waypoints Go AWOL" — getting around GPS quirks; "Arriving on a Stump" — a slot, that is; "The Real Checkride" — it's IMC that counts. PLUS: The controller's union looks to the public; phantom airplanes might finally exist; phantom airlines never existed; and poorly designed plates could have you shooting the wrong approach. Order IFR magazine at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/ifrmag/avflash.
We Welcome Your Feedback!

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:
AVweb's editorial team: http://avweb.com/contact/authors.html.

Have a product or service to advertise on AVweb? A question on marketing? Send it to AVweb's sales team: mailto:sales@avweb.com.

Freedom, independence, responsibility.

AVflash is now available in optional easier-to-read graphic format, which includes some photos and illustrations. If you prefer, you can continue to receive AVflash in text-only format. Simply follow these instructions and AVflash will continue to arrive as it always has, in text format.

Home | Free Sign Up | Advertise | Help | Contact Us
Aviation Consumer | IFR Magazine | Aviation Safety
Light Plane Maintenance | IFR Refresher | KITPLANES |