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Volume 11, Number 49b December 8, 2005

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This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by ... Aircraft Spruce & Specialty Co.

Reduced Pricing on Noisebuster 
Headset!AIRCRAFT SPRUCE REDUCES PRICING ON YOUR NOISEBUSTER HEADSET
Aircraft Spruce has reduced pricing on the Noisebuster Headset to $39.95. Noisebuster electronically cancels background noise so you can enjoy peace and quiet or enhanced clarity of music with reduced distortion. Try it on an airplane to reduce engine din and enhance the sounds of in-flight entertainment. This headset is comfortable, lightweight, adjustable, and foldable for portability and easy storage. It includes a travel pouch, an airplane seat dual-prong adapter, and one AAA battery. Hurry, this offer will end December 31st of this year. Refer to part number 11-00107. To order, call 1-877-4SPRUCE or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/spruce/avflash.

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

FEDERAL AIR MARSHAL(S?) KILL AIRLINE PASSENGER
Shortly after 2 p.m., yesterday, (Pearl Harbor day) Rigoberto Alpizar, 44, was seated near the rear of the plane among more than 110 other passengers aboard American Airlines flight 924, a Boeing 757, as it prepared to push back from the gate at Miami international. Jim Bauer, special agent in charge of the Miami office of the Federal Air Marshals yesterday told reporters agents aboard the aircraft then overheard Alpizar in his seat "uttering threatening words that included a sentence to the effect that he had a bomb." (As of midnight last night, neither Alpizar's exact words, nor any specific witnesses who heard them had been confirmed or identified.) Alpizar then became agitated, rose from his seat and fled the aircraft. Federal officials say Alpizar was pursued by the onboard Federal Air Marshals and was in the still-attached jetway when he failed to comply with verbal commands issued by the Air Marshals. The agents then opened fire and Alpizar was killed. In the subsequent search, no explosives were found anywhere aboard the flight and authorities do not believe Alpizar was affiliated with any terrorist group. There were more than 110 passengers and crew within a stone's throw of the event. We have presented the very few accordant details supported by multiple sources at the time of this writing. More...

The Outdoor ChannelNEW EPISODES OF HIGH DEFINITION VIDEO EXPLODE
ONTO YOUR TELEVISION WITH WINGS TO ADVENTURE!

Wings to Adventure is the ground-breaking series featuring aviation as YOU know it! Sunday at 2:30pm Eastern, on the Outdoor Channel. Each week, host Tom Gresham profiles classic and new planes and visits great fly-in destinations. Buckle up! http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/outdoor/avflash.

PARTS AND PLANES FRAUD
A Bradenton, Fla., man has been charged with organized fraud for a series of aircraft and aircraft parts transactions that allegedly went sour. Phillip D. Casciola is alleged to have been paid for parts and taken deposits on aircraft without delivering the goods. According to the Bradenton Herald, federal and local authorities estimate the value of the alleged fraud to be at least $4.5 million. Casciola operates an Internet-based brokerage and consulting company called JetBroker.org, which was still online when we checked on Wednesday. More...

ACCUSED NO STRANGER TO COURT
The Supreme Court of Alaska recently upheld a $330,000 judgment against Casciola, which he'd appealed. The Supreme Court said the $30,000 award for real damages and the $300,000 award for punitive damages were justified to "vindicate Alaska's legitimate interest in preventing particularly malignant conduct." In the earlier judgment, an Alaska court upheld F.S. Air's allegation that Casciola had misrepresented the availability of two engines for one of its Learjet medevac aircraft and refused to refund the $25,000 deposit the company had given the broker. In that deal, Casciola had agreed to provide two "freshly overhauled" engines for just $100,000, plus the cores from the old engines. More...

FALSE CERTIFICATIONS LEAD TO JAIL TERM
In an unrelated case in California, Amanullah Khan, 56, of Brea, Calif., was sentenced to 188 months in prison for falsely certifying aircraft parts, including flight-critical components, according to a release posted by The Law News Network attributed by the site to Assistant US Attorney, Douglas F. McCormick. U.S. District Judge David O. Carter also ordered Khan to pay $5.4 million in restitution to his victims. According to the release, Khan simply drew up his own FAA certifications for the parts he sold, including helicopter grip assemblies that he said were made of steel when they were actually made of aluminum. The parts are available in both metals but steel assemblies have a 2,500-hour life while the aluminum assemblies are only good for 300 hours, according to the release. The US Attorney's release, Khan switched data plates on the parts. And in an ironic twist, Khan was also found guilty of illegally supplying parts to foreign military powers. More...

LightSPEED's LightFlight Mach 1 Headset

NEW: MACH 1 HEADSET — CUSTOM-FITTED EARPIECES by LIGHTSPEED
Found in the ears of competitive race car drivers and NASA astronauts, pilots can now opt for custom-molded earpieces. Optional MACH 1 customized earpieces provide the ultimate comfort. No longer rely on "one-size fits all." Fitted perfectly for your ear canals, earpieces block out ambient noise while getting concert-hall sound quality. Just in time for the holidays, the MACH 1 makes the perfect headset. For more information on the MACH 1 and optional earpieces, contact LightSPEED at (800) 332-2421 during business hours (PST). Or visit http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/litspeed/M1/avflash.

AVIATION’S SIX PERCENT … AND COUNTING
Seems a little hard to believe that in a country that has spawned the likes of Patty Wagstaff, Julie Clark Betty Skelton and dozens of other top female aerobatic pilots since 1915 that the first female member of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds is now in training at Nellis Air Force Base near Las Vegas. And Punta Gorda, Fla., is claiming a "coup" by hosting the first performance of the group, with Capt. Nicole Malachowski at No. 3 right wing, during the Florida International Air Show April 1 and 2. Malachowski's appointment was announced last June but that didn't stop show manager Bucky McQueen from breathlessly announcing that it will be "the first time a female pilot has performed with any military jet team, anywhere." The Canadian Armed Forces would disagree. More...

A RARE CHALLENGE AT THE GLIDING GRAND PRIX
And although 19 percent of the Air Force's pilots are women, there are probably lots of female military "firsts" left. But it's sometimes a little surprising, in this day and age, for the powder-room door to open for the first time in civilian flying. However, Mette Pedersen, of Denmark, will be the first woman to compete against men in the New Zealand Gliding Gran Prix Jan. 21 to Jan. 27. Now, even Pedersen, the current world women's champion, seems to wonder why there's been a gender gap at this level. "Physically, there is nothing limiting me to performing as well as the men," she noted. But there was also some giddiness there. "Being a girl in a man's world is always special," she said. More...

KING GETS NAA AWARD
And while some might still consider aspects of aviation a "man's world" they certainly recognize its King of flight training, first name Martha. The co-founder of King Schools was recently presented the Cliff Henderson Award for Achievement by the National Aeronautic Association. It's presented annually to "a living individual or group whose vision, leadership, or skill, has made a significant and lasting contribution to the promotion and advancement of aviation or space activity." King gets her message across in training videos seen by about half of all flight students in the U.S. but she got there by recording a major "first." More...

THE SJ30-2 IS THE WORLD'S FASTEST LIGHT BUSINESS JET
Not only is it fast; it has intercontinental range — 560 mph and over 2800 sm range. The SJ30-2 is the most advanced light business jet in the sky today, the perfect package of speed, range, and good looks. For details, go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/sino/avflash.

PENSION LOBBY GOES FULL THROTTLE
Four big airlines and all of their unions got together in an unheard-of show of unanimity last week, but don't credit the Christmas spirit. Enlightened self-interest is behind their show of force on Capitol Hill to try and press the House into taking up pension legislation passed by the Senate last month. The legislation would give the struggling airlines 20 years to make up shortfalls in pension funding, something they say they need to maintain the pension plans. However, the White House has said it will veto the provisions and it looks like the House doesn't want the confrontation because its version of the bill doesn't have any of that language. More...

NEW SKYLANE STOLEN FROM LOCKED HANGAR
Maybe Harry Houdini has come back as an airplane thief. Vincent MacLeod III was planning to get himself current again on his $300,000 2002 Cessna 182T on Nov. 20 but when he unlocked the double padlocked door to his hangar at El Monte Airport in California, it was empty. Police told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune that there was no sign of forced entry. Airport Manager Rafael Herrera told the newspaper that rumors circulating at the airport that former airport employees still had keys to the hangars were not true. Whoever took the plane was also careful to take all its logs. More...

Trade-A-PlaneGIVE THE GIFT THAT KEEPS THEM FLYING
Give 24 issues (two years) of Trade-A-Plane for just $24.95 (US, standard mail) — including no-cost access to Trade-A-Plane's daily updated web site. Subscribe by calling (800) 337-5263 and mentioning this AVflash, or go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/tap/avflash.

THE COOLEST PLANES YOU'LL NEVER FLY
Dream all you want, the most sophisticated hardware coming off the line these days doesn't need you, unless you're good with a remote. Bell Helicopter announced earlier this week that its tiltrotor Eagle Eye TR918unmanned aircraft system (UAS) has received FAA certification. It's the first such aircraft to get the FAA nod and we have to agree with Bell that the mind boggles at the possibilities for commercial and military uses. The Eagle Eye will be tested at Bell's new XworX facility in "West Texas." And while the technology and capabilities of unmanned aircraft have grown exponentially in recent years, the regulatory environment remains conservative, something not even the wishes of a president can budge. More...

10-MINUTE FLIGHT CLAIMS RECORD
For the man who set the record for the longest endurance flight ever, the latest notch on Dick Rutan's yoke was over in the blink of an eye -- and it probably won't stand as a record for much longer. Last Saturday, Rutan, who with Jeana Yeager flew around the world nonstop in 1986, took a 10-minute hop in XCOR's EZ-Rocket from Mojave to California City. It was the "first time" a rocket-powered plane had ever made a point-to-point flight with the pilot in control for most phases of flight. It was also the EZ-Rocket's last flight. XCOR spokeswoman Aleta Jackson told Space.com that after 25 flights they've learned what they needed to from the modified Long EZ. More...

FOR AVIATION PROFESSIONALS WHO WORK
WITH YOU ON YOUR AIRCRAFT INSURANCE,

contact CS&A Insurance. CS&A combines one of the most knowledgeable teams of aviation insurance professionals with the industry's most respectable aviation underwriting companies. Call the CS&A pros at (800) 761-2557 and mention this AVflash, or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/csa/avflash.

NATCA, FAA SPAR OVER MAINTENANCE
The National Air Traffic Controllers Association says the FAA is planning to let equipment fail before it gets any service attention but the FAA says the union is trotting out an old issue that it's already dealt with. NATCA issued a press release on Tuesday suggesting the FAA was abandoning the established practice of preventive maintenance on its equipment in favor of a "fail and fix" regimen. "By waiting until a potentially dangerous failure occurs, this new agency policy directly threatens passenger safety and is the latest example of the agency's mismanagement, which is reducing the reliability and integrity of the system by cutting corners," the press release reads. FAA spokesman Greg Martin said the Professional Airways Systems Specialists had already brought up the issue last March. He said the new maintenance system is simply a much-needed update to bring maintenance work in line with modern technology. More...

TWO RESCUED FROM DOWNED GLIDER
The pilot and passenger of a Grob G103 were found uninjured on the side of a mountain in Southern California early Sunday. The two were airlifted from their impromptu landing site at the 4,200-foot level in the San Gabriel Mountains at first light. They'd taken a tow to 9,300 feet in the Mt. Baden-Powell area on Saturday and didn't return to the point of origin, Crystal Airport. It's not known why the pilot opted to put the glider down. Civil Air Patrol spokesman Capt. Bob Kielholtz said the sailplane was not equipped with an ELT and that prevented a night search for the landing site. More...

THE PERFECT "ONE-SIZE-FITS-ALL" GIFT FROM OREGON AERO
The perfect gift is a holiday gift certificate from Oregon Aero. Oregon Aero has everything to help your favorite pilot fly Painless, Safer, and Quieter™ this holiday season. From seat cushion systems to headset upgrades, Oregon Aero makes the pain go away. Oregon Aero® ShockBlockers® Insole Inserts even make walking more comfortable.  Go online to view all of Oregon Aero's quality products.  Then order a gift certificate, or print out a page and leave a "hint" for someone! To order, call (800) 888-6910 or visit Oregon Aero Gift Certificates at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/oregon/GiftCert05/avflash.

ON THE FLY...
A C-130 crashed into a Tehran apartment building, killing more than 120...
AirVenture Web site is up...
Australian military planes to patrol Games...
Chicago eyes banning seaplanes...
Teen math whiz may help wing designers. 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. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part. More...

FAA ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS ARE ON THE RISE!
Legal claims for airspace incursions have increased over 150% — all requiring legal counsel.  That's why pilots enroll in the AOPA Legal Services Plan for affordable, dependable legal protection when they unwittingly violate FAA rules.  The AOPA Legal Services Plan provides protection in a variety of situations, plus gives you unlimited consultation on most aviation matters covered by the Plan, annual review of key aviation documents, and one no-cost half-hour consultation — all for less than $30 per year.  Enroll in AOPA's Legal Services Plan BEFORE you need it!  Call (800) USA-AOPA (800-872-8672), or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/aopalegal/avflash.

NEW ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
COLUMNS
Say Again? #57: Überlingen
A quiet night with few airplanes in the sky and tired controllers working with them. Sounds like the typical midnight shift in any air traffic control room in the world. Until the radar goes out for maintenance and the phones don't work. AVweb's Don Brown wonders whether there will be enough controllers to prevent another midair collision like the one over Überlingen, Germany.

More...

BENNETT AVIONICS WILL MAKE YOUR HOLIDAY
DEADLINE WITH UPGRADED SHIPPING

Bennett Avionics stocks a complete line of used avionics that will add tremendous capability to any aircraft at a price that makes sense. Till December 31st, Bennett will upgrade domestic ground shipping to 2nd Day. Call the Bennett Avionics specialists at (860) 653-7295 (PCT), or go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/bennett/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/ More...

AVIDYNE'S NEW TAS600 SYSTEMS DELIVER ACTIVE-SURVEILLANCE
TRAFFIC AWARENESS PROTECTION UNDER $10,000

With pricing starting at $9,990, Avidyne's new TAS600 systems set a new price-performance standard for active-surveillance traffic capability and make important safety systems affordable for owners of light GA aircraft.  TAS600 systems show standard TAS symbology on display systems from 15 different manufacturers, including Avidyne's Entegra and EX500/5000 MFDs; Garmin's G1000, MX20, and 400/500-series; as well as displays from Honeywell, Collins, Chelton, Sandel, and others.  For complete details, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avidyne/avflash.

AVWEB'S QUESTION OF THE WEEK ...
This week, AVweb wants to hear your opinion on yesterday's shooting death of an airline passenger by Federal Air Marshalls. Is this an example of a system that works, or one that failed? PLUS: Results of last week's question on readers' longest cross-country flights. More...

AVWEB'S PICTURE OF THE WEEK ...
Submissions are picking up again after the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday — that time of the year when a major portion of our North American readership dozes into a four-day turkey-digesting slumber. As the numbers rise, quality holds steady — giving us plenty of great images to pick from this week. Our top spot (and an official AVweb baseball hat) goes to Mark Stephenson of Fitzroy Harbor, Ontario. More...



GIFT-GIVING MADE EASY
Visit AVweb's Holiday Shopping Page

Featuring products and services from AVweb's
sponsors — including very special holiday offers!
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Access to AVweb and AVflash is provided by the support of our fine sponsors. We appreciate your patronage.

SHOPPING DEALS  
A HOLIDAY GIFT IDEA FOR AVIATION ENTHUSIASTS
The Airplane Shop is the world's most relied-upon connection for high-quality transportation collectibles. Whether your interest is commercial, military, or spacecraft, there is a wide variety of models to choose from. Browse the Airplane Shop's online catalog in the comfort of your home or office, knowing that your transactions are swift, seamless, and secure. Go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/daron/avflash.
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.
FLYING THE LEGENDARY DC-3,
A NEW DVD, PUTS YOU IN THE COCKPIT

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.
NOVEMBER'S FLYING MAGAZINE REPORTS ON SECOND-GENERATION PIPER MERIDIAN
The first single with a three-display Avidyne glass cockpit. Also in November's issue: America's legendary Cub is reborn as Legend Aircraft's all-new-construction light sport aircraft; IFR emergencies from Tom Benenson and Richard Collins; and more. Order a Flying subscription for yourself (or as a holiday gift) at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/flying/avflash.
HIGH-ADVENTURE FLYING IN UTAH'S RED ROCK COUNTRY
Utah's Red Rock Country, Volume 1 is back-country flying at its best. Experience firsthand the romance and freedom of flying the wide-open spaces of the American West. Host and pilot Jim Clark, with the guidance of local CFIs, takes you into some of the most beautiful, rugged, and remote airstrips in the U.S. Order in time for holiday gifts with complimentary U.S. shipping at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/outthere/avflash.
COMM1 OFFERS COMPLIMENTARY
MULTIMEDIA STEREO HEADSET WITH PURCHASE

Comm1's unique, interactive CD-ROM Radio Simulators teach pilots how to communicate safely and professionally with ATC from the safety and privacy of their desktop computers. Available in VFR, IFR, and Clearance on Request versions, Comm1 Radio Simulators let pilots experience real flight situations through high-quality audio and graphics. For this holiday special, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/comm1/avflash.
ARE YOU LISTENING?
The Best of Rod Machado Live on 14 audio CDs just released! Using his trademark "Laugh & Learn" style, Rod entertains his audience as he teaches. These CDs include Rod's popular seminar on handling in-flight emergencies, his latest programs on defensive flying, the art of flying, and the non-pilot's guide to landing an airplane. If you like to laugh, you'll find three CDs containing Rod's funniest aviation humor. Laugh and learn while driving, or take Rod running. Tell Santa that you gotta have them! Order at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/machado/avflash.
SOME PILOTS SEEM TO HAVE IT TOGETHER, WHILE YOU LACK CONFIDENCE
After reading Gordon Henrie's Instructional Methods for Flight Instructors, and Ways to Improve the Precision, Safety and Confidence of Rated Pilots, you will know HOW to be more capable and confident in your flying. This is not a question-and-answer book, but what you do and think when you are in the cockpit and how to route out bad habits and techniques. HOLIDAY SPECIAL: Order this amazing book for yourself and as gifts for $34.95 — save $5 and get complimentary gift-wrapping and media mail shipping at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/mountain/avflash.
GIVE THE GIFT YOU HOPE WILL NEVER BE USED!
CO Guardian has carbon monoxide detector 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.  HOLIDAY SPECIAL: $20 off each model with no-cost U.S. shipping.  Go online to find the CO Guardian model right for your aircraft at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/cog/avflash.
SPONSOR NEWS
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.
WORRIED ABOUT BUSTING A REG?  YOU SHOULD BE!
It's all too easy with today's tightened rules and enforcement.  Join the smart pilots who trust Aviation Safety to keep them aware and in the air.  Discover this informative, instructive monthly that sharpens your savvy and air readiness.  Subscribe now for big savings from the regular rate at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avsafe/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 Russ Niles:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#rniles
AVweb's editorial team: http://avweb.com/contact/authors.html.

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