Number 52b — December 29, 2005|
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This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by ... LightSPEED Aviation
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The Top Headlines From
AVweb's Expanded, Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's
REPORT ASSESSES GA SECURITY THREAT
The Congressional Research Service has released a new report, "Securing General Aviation," which AOPA says will aid lobbying efforts in support of
fair and rational treatment for GA in any new security legislation.
The 43-page report aims to provide members of Congress with
nonpartisan research results and analysis. It explains what GA is, the
risk factors, and possible options to mitigate those risks. "This
report from Congress's highly respected research agency provides an
unbiased, realistic view of both the minimal threat that light GA
aircraft represent and the significant social and economic impacts of
ill-considered security regulations," said Andy Cebula, AOPA senior
vice president of government and technical affairs. More...
OF GA AIRCRAFT ANALYZED
The report carefully analyzes the limited capability of the typical GA
aircraft to carry conventional explosives. "At least with regard to
being used as a platform for conventional explosives, the threat posed
by light GA aircraft is relatively small compared to trucks which have
significantly larger payload capacities," the report states. However,
the report also explains that GA aircraft are not all alike. "The
threat posed by general aviation aircraft is largely a function of
aircraft weight, payload capacity (including fuel capacity), and
speed," the report says. Further, dangers from aerial dispersion of
chemical and biological agents "may not be as ominous as some fear,"
the report says. More...
Airspace restrictions, in their various forms, are analyzed by the
report. Objections from pilots and the impact on flight operations are
noted. "The resource requirements and associated costs for monitoring
restricted airspace and providing airspace protection around critical
sites raise policy questions regarding the appropriate balancing of
these measures with efforts to address other homeland security
threats, and the effect of these measures on air commerce and the
freedom of movement by air," the report says. AOPA says the report
will provide support to efforts to prevent the Washington, D.C., ADIZ
from becoming a permanent fixture. More...
APPROACH GOES LIVE
A new GPS approach is now available to all aircraft at Washington Reagan
National Airport (DCA). The Required Navigation Performance (RNP)
approach had been working since September, but only for Alaska
Airlines, which pioneered the use of such approaches to improve access
into remote and challenging airports. At Reagan National, RNP-guided
approaches will increase efficiency, improve safety and reduce the
effect of aircraft noise and emissions on homes and businesses under
the flight path, the FAA said. The Reagan National RNP approach to
Runway 19, which follows the Potomac River, allows planes to land with
considerably lower cloud ceilings and visibility than currently
required, increasing airport access during marginal weather.
LOOK AT WHAT'S NEXT
"We're tapping the high-performance computing capability of today's
aircraft to move more planes more safely and efficiently," said FAA
Administrator Marion Blakey. "The environmental benefits are terrific
too, because flying straight down the middle of the flight path means
that people on the ground perceive less jet noise and experience fewer
engine emissions." More RNP approaches are slated to become available
in 2006, including the Wenatchee Airport in Washington; George Bush
Intercontinental in Houston; Chicago Midway; Newark, N.J., Liberty;
Honolulu International; Gary, Ind.; Tampa, Fla.; Fort Lauderdale,
Fla.; Guam; Tucson, Ariz.; Long Beach, Calif.; and John F. Kennedy
International in New York. More...
MIX-UP AFFECTS BUSY LAX AIRSPACE
Modifications to the Los Angeles Class B airspace went into effect
last week, lowering the base altitudes for several VFR flyways. The
new altitudes should have been printed on the back of the new Terminal
Area Chart that was published Dec. 22, but due to an internal FAA
glitch, the changes weren't made. "The Class B airspace boundaries on
the chart are depicted correctly, it is only the flyway (planning)
altitudes on the back side of the chart that [are incorrect]," Eric
Secretan, of the National Aeronautical Charting Office, told
AVweb. He said the chart is being reprinted and corrected
copies should be distributed by the first week of January. Meanwhile,
the changes are in effect nonetheless. More...
OFFERS ONLINE AIRSPACE TRAINING FOR PILOTS
Online training is now available to help general aviation pilots
understand the complexities of today's stricter airspace rules and
reduce violations of restricted airspace, the FAA said on Tuesday. The
training is meant for any pilots who fly in or near restricted areas,
especially around Washington, D.C. The course provides detailed information on the
requirements and procedures required to operate in the Washington,
D.C., Metropolitan Area Flight Restricted Zone (FRZ), the Washington,
D.C., Metropolitan Area Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) and
other restricted airspace. Pilots who complete the Web-based course
and pass a 25-question multiple-choice test will receive a certificate
of completion. More...
AIRCRAFT SPRUCE OFFERS NEW
Aircraft Spruce is pleased to offer the new
all-weather Millennium model Robotow. It is lightweight (under
30 lbs.) and portable, making it ideal for carrying onboard your
aircraft. When the Robotow's heavy-duty, all-weather knurled drive
drum is held against the nose wheel, the aircraft is easily moved. A
trigger on the handle controls the speed while a switch reverses
direction on command. Powerful, portable, and dependable, Robotow is
an ideal power towbar for the following aircraft: Beech, Cessna,
Piper, Trainer, Navion, Commander, Caravan, and Trinidad. 18-volt &
120-volt models are available. To order, call 1-877-4SPRUCE, or
go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/spruce/avflash.
GPS LAUNCHED IN EUROPE
The European Space Agency yesterday launched their first test
satellite for the Galileo project, which will comprise a
constellation of 30 satellites to rival the U.S. GPS system. Galileo
is expected to be complete by 2010, with some services starting as
soon as 2008. Its global positioning capabilities will be more
accurate than the current GPS system, which is controlled by the U.S.
military, and will even work indoors. Its signals should be compatible
with current GPS hardware. It will have a basic signal that will be
available free to everyone, and a more precise signal which will be
ORIGIN QUIETLY MOVES SPACEWARD
Richard Branson's new spaceport in New Mexico could have competition
from a similar site in Texas, according to an Associated
Press report. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com, had bought
165,000 acres near El Paso that will be used as a test site and an
eventual spaceport. The AP said Bezos has also bought 25 acres south
of Seattle that will be used as a site to design and build spacecraft
and engines. The site includes a 243,000-square-foot office and
warehouse building that is being revamped to accommodate research and
assembly areas, plus a 90,000-square-foot rocket-engine test stand
surrounded by a 12-foot earthen berm. Staff from Bezos' space company,
will move to the site early in 2006, the AP said. More...
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PLANS TO CONSOLIDATE SERVICE AREA OFFICES
The FAA currently maintains nine Air Traffic Organization (ATO) Service Area
offices, located in each of the FAA regional offices, but plans to
consolidate them into just three regional sites in 2006. "The decision
to restructure the Service Area offices was made to reduce overhead
positions and operating costs, and eliminate redundancies," the FAA
said in its location study report, which it recently posted
online. "Additionally, the decision to restructure focused on
improving the efficiency of operations and effectiveness of service."
The report finds that Atlanta, Seattle, and Fort Worth, Texas, would
be the best sites for the three consolidated offices, and the changes
would save the FAA about $40 million over 10 years. More...
FAMILY HELPS YOUNG TIME-BUILDERS
The family of a Canadian pilot who died in a crash last week have
created a scholarship in his honor with the hope it will save the
lives of future young pilots, Canada.com reported on Monday. Trevor Hardy, 31,
was the co-pilot of a Mitsubishi Mu-2, flying for Nav Air Charter. The
airplane crashed and exploded at Northwest Regional Airport on Dec.
20, killing Hardy and Simon Piper, 33. Hardy had worked hard to put
himself through flight school and build up the thousands of hours of
flight experience he needed to qualify for the airline career he
wanted. To help other young pilots, the family and Mike Herr, one of
Hardy's lifelong friends, have created the Trevor Hardy Scholarship
Fund for young pilots in training. More...
USE AIRPORT RECORDS TO CATCH DRUG SMUGGLERS
Police in Oregon arrested two Canadian men when they stopped to refuel
at Burns Municipal Airport last month, seizing almost a half-ton of
marijuana, The Associated Press reported on Monday. The
arrest followed an effort by police to more closely monitor remote
rural airports in the region, checking self-service fuel records to
search for clues to illicit operations. Information from those records
is now going into the Oregon Department of Justice's computerized
intelligence network, where it will be available to federal, state and
local law-enforcement agencies. But it's expected that the impact of
that effort will last only until the smugglers figure it out, then
they will simply circumvent it. More...
An MD-80 landed safely after a foot-long gash opened in the
New Jersey had 44 aviation accidents in 2005, double
the number in 2004...
China building first customer support center
for its ARJ21 jet...
Profits in China's civil aviation sector fell
by half last year...
Skywatchers in Western U.S. could glimpse
space probe re-entry. More...
NEWSTIPS ADDRESS ...
What have you heard? There might be something to it. If you've
heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about, don't be
shy. Submit news tips via email to email@example.com. You're a part
of our team ... often, the best part. More...
AIRCRAFT INSURANCE, THERE IS AN OPTION GO DIRECT TO
Many insurance agents say they represent "all the
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other aircraft insurance provider. What these agents don't tell you is
that there is an option Avemco. Avemco is the ONLY
direct writer of general aviation insurance in the country and the
only insurance company you can contact directly to purchase insurance.
You always have an option with Avemco, offering mid-term premium
discounts, storage options, credits for training, same-day service,
and multiple payment options. Call (888) 241-7891, or go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avemco/avflash.
ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
Quiz #102: Smooth
No, the title doesn't reflect our moves on the dance
floor. Instead, it refers to your pilot skills in something other than
straight-and-level flight. Being cool, you'll coordinate your mind and
feet to answer the following questions.
|AVIDYNE'S NEW TAS600 SYSTEMS DELIVER
TRAFFIC AWARENESS PROTECTION UNDER
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.
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/
QUESTION OF THE WEEK ...
This week, AVweb wants to know what health issue is most important to
you (in relation to your medical certificate). PLUS: What did AVweb
readers want to find in their stockings this year? Answers to last
week's question. More...
PICTURE OF THE WEEK ...
Submissions to our "Picture of the Week" contest continue to trickle
in at a reduced rate. For the second week in a row, we received only a
few dozen entries not uncommon for this time of year.
Fortunately, we ran a selection of holiday-themed photos last week and
rolled over those pictures into this week's competition
allowing us plenty of photos to choose from, including a handful of
oh-so-nifty bonus pics. Interestingly, many of the past couple of
weeks' photos were black-and-whites and more than a few of
those were "vintage" photos readers found in their scrapbooks. So to
kick us off this week, here are three of our favorite black-and-whites
... . More...
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|Sponsor News and
Access to AVweb and AVflash is provided by
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|ATTENTION, PIPER OWNERS AND PILOTS!|
Piper Flyer Association (PFA) provides parts locating, tech
support, a monthly member magazine, online forums, national and
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one-year membership for $39, access the needed information to expand
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Piper aircraft. Join the Piper Flyer Association (PFA) as they build
the ultimate Piper association. The PFA is located on the Waupaca
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information (and to request a sample copy of the magazine), go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/pfa/avflash.
|SEE WHAT ATC SEES AND THEN SEE WHAT THEY DO WITH
The AVweb Edition of Flight Explorer is the
PC-based graphical aircraft situation display that gives a real-time
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Whether you're tracking a friend or want to learn more about the
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SHORT STACK HAS ARRIVED FOR PIPERS & GRUMMANS AT POWER
Power Flow Systems, manufacturers of
FAA-certified tuned exhaust systems, have introduced a new "short
stack" exhaust pipe for Piper PA-28 and Grumman AA5 series aircraft.
The new STC'd short stack looks better while still providing up to 23
more available horsepower. For more information on this and the right
tuned exhaust system for your aircraft, go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/power/avflash.
|FLYING MAGAZINE ASKS, "ARE NEW AIRSPACE USER FEES
Find out in the January issue of
Flying. Plus: Best Buy Singles; Flying the "Fast Glass"
G1000 Mooney Ovation 2; Report from the Red Bull Air Races; Ice
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|ATTENTION, MECHANICS! SOFTWARE FOR YOUR
John Schwaner's The Mechanic's Toolbox
+ Engineering Manual Companion has been a mainstay of mechanics
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Analyzer, Metals ID using Field Methods, and more. This is immense!
For complete details and to order (U.S. only), go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/skyranch/avflash.
|HASSLE-FREE AUTO BUYING FROM CREWCAR & CONSUMER
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.
|KITPLANES' MARCH ISSUE IS JAM-PACKED WITH THESE
The ViperJet II promises speed with docile
handling for a price; ignition option technology; "See & Avoid, Part
1: Hazard Detection"; a review of three LSAs ready for sale; Earl
Hibler's Baby Doll; tips and tricks for fabric covering; and "Designer
Spotlight: Lance Neibauer, Lancair Founder." Don't miss an issue of
Kitplanes order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/kitplanes/avflash.
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