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Volume 12, Number 37b
September 14, 2006
Ultra-Comfort from LightSPEED Fly in Ultra-Comfort with LightSPEED Headsets
"Custom ear molds made my Mach 1 as quiet as any headset I've tried." — Bing Lantis, President of Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing. Discover what thousands of pilots already have: the most comfortable headsets in the industry. The in-the-ear Mach 1 weighs less than 1 oz.; the full-size Thirty 3G, just under 16 oz. and uses soft conform-foam ear cushions. Try a LightSPEED headset with a 30-day money-back guarantee. To order, contact a LightSPEED dealer or call (800) 332-2421 (PST, business hours). View the 60-second video clip!
UAVs On The Horizonback to top 

The FAA needs to move more quickly to develop rules that would allow unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) into the National Airspace System, according to U.S. Army Col. Don Hazelwood. Speaking at a recent conference about UAVs in Orlando, Fla., Hazelwood said the technology is quickly improving, accident rates are down, and the unmanned systems are proving their safety and utility under extreme conditions in Iraq. Critical missions such as finding lost children and fighting forest fires could benefit from UAV deployment now, he said. The FAA should set a goal to integrate the aircraft into the NAS within two years, he said, according to flightglobal.com. More...

Hazelwood said that UAVs now flying in Iraq already are operating in the equivalent of Class B airspace. Balad Airbase, near Baghdad, "goes 24/7, 365 days a year [and] intermingles armed aircraft, medivacs, commercial aircraft, Fedex, and 20 to 30 UAVs everyday, all day. It has never had a UAV accident," he said. But some close calls have occurred, he added. Nevertheless, he said, "I am not sure that I buy the argument that we can't fly in the National Airspace today. Maybe we don't meet the stringent FAA requirements to fly in Class B, but we do fly in Class B airspace every day in Iraq." Currently, FAA rules most often keep UAVs (most recently prized by border patrol advocates) and manned aircraft separate. More...

JA Air Center 
— Your Garmin Source Find JA Air Center — Find the New Garmin GPSMap 496
JA Air Center, Your Garmin Source, has the new Garmin GPSMap 496 with XM Weather, Terrain, AOPA Airport Guide, Taxiway Database, and built-in StreetPilot Automotive GPS in stock for immediate delivery. Call JA Air Center toll-free at (800) 323-5966, or order online.
If you are looking to sell your current GPS, JA Air Center Purchases Used GPS and Avionics — call for current values.
Visit the new GPSMap 496 Blog for more information on this exciting new product from Garmin.
In Search Of Controlback to top 

New technologies being developed in Europe would make it impossible for hijackers to fly airplanes into buildings, The Sunday Times reported on Sunday. Systems using biometrics, which scan irises and fingerprints, would prevent unauthorized users from gaining access to cockpits and from operating the airplane's controls. If the airplane was headed for a collision with a building or terrain, another on-board system would automatically cause it to divert. That technology is based on mid-air-collision alert systems already in use. Another system, which was tested last month, comprises hidden cameras and microphones that can monitor every passenger and their conversations. This may prove alarming to privacy advocates, the Times said, especially if lavatories are also monitored. More...

While many recall the eerie feeling of a quiet sky above the U.S. in the hours after 9/11, that wasn't the first time that all civil aircraft were grounded. Roger A. Mola, a researcher at Air & Space Smithsonian magazine, writes in this month's issue that three times in the early 1960s, all civil air traffic in the U.S. (except Hawaii) was grounded so NORAD could test defenses against Soviet attack. Called Operation Skyshield, the drills included air forces from the U.S., Canada and the United Kingdom. They flew 6,000 sorties to simulate air attacks by Soviet fighters against civilian targets in New York, Chicago, and Washington, D.C. More...

FLITELite™ Dual-Intensity Pilot Light from Aircraft Spruce FLITELite™ Dual-Intensity Pilot's Light Available at Aircraft Spruce
FLITELite™ is an LED flashlight that snaps onto your headset microphone. More than just a flashlight, it is a lighting system with advanced microcomputer technology. Comprised of three main components: a three-LED light unit with an infrared proximity switch controlled with the touch of your lip, a specific adapter for your aviation headset, and a AAA battery pack good for 200+ hours of use. FLITELite™ takes only seconds to install. Please call Aircraft Spruce at 1-877-4-SPRUCE or visit online.
News Briefsback to top 

"Half the cost, with none of the hassle." That's what iFly founder Erik Lindbergh aims to deliver to pilots who want to fly state-of-the art Columbia 350s in his new fractional-ownership program, now ready to launch at six sites in Southern California. "Now more than ever, personal aircraft travel has the ability to transform your lifestyle," Lindbergh said. "You can go where you want to go when you want to go. With iFly, it's much more affordable and we take care of all of the management details." The company handles insurance, maintenance, ground facilities, scheduling, and training. The member-to-aircraft ratio is 4 to 1. All scheduling is done online, with no preset limit on hours or overnight trips. More...

ftp://mandala@ftp.st.bendtel.netstarted flying 40 years ago, when he was 16, and kept at it till he was a 767 captain, flying international routes for US Airways. But four years ago, a truck smashed into his pickup in North Carolina, and he's now paralyzed from the chest down. "Fortunately, my hands and arms work fine," Griff told the Charlotte Observer last week. And that means he can still fly. Griff lives at Long Island Airpark, with his wife, Dina, and he has flown with friends to Florida, Guatemala and Mexico. Now he wants to fly in next year's Reno National Championship Air Races. As far he knows, Griff will be the first paralyzed pilot to compete there. "I want to show people with injuries that the sky is no longer the limit," he said. "What they want to do can be achieved." More...

Motors, Inc. Adam, Cirrus, Columbia, Diamond, Liberty ...
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. Click here for further details.
News Briefsback to top 

Aero-trekking is the term coined by sport fliers who enjoy long-distance, low-level, open-air flying (although some say they "don't hold with this high-sounding, techno-babble, aero-trekking moniker," but prefer to use the term "kite-plane airtrekking"). The treks follow designated routes, ranked from 1 to 5 in difficulty, that extend for 50 miles or more across sparsely populated regions of the western U.S. The Yellow Birds (flying club), for example, have established an impressive 500-mile circuit across Arizona and New Mexico with seven fixed airstrip sites, each with a fuel farm and overnight accommodations, to free the trekkers from the "limitations and annoyance" of depending on ground-support vehicles. Last week, the Southwest Aerotrekking Academy said it will soon open 11 new sites across four states, with runways, hangars and accommodations, and miles of low-level routes in between. The scenery sounds impressive. More...

The thoroughly burned wreck of a light aircraft with two bodies on board was found by firefighters on Tuesday as they battled a wildfire in Plumas National Forest, north of Lake Tahoe, in California. The airplane was tentatively identified as perhaps a Citabria or Decathlon. Smoke jumpers discovered the wreckage Monday in a remote area inside the fire's perimeter. Tricia Christofferson, public information officer for the National Forest, told the Oroville Mercury Register. The fire had burned about 20 acres, in rugged canyon lands near the the South Fork Feather River. Whether the airplane crash started the fire was unclear. The fire was caused by "human activity," according to the Mercury Register, but no further details about the cause were available. More...

Have a Concern About Your Medical?
AOPA's Pilot Information Center has a dedicated staff of medical specialists who can answer your basic medical questions or guide you through the appeal process following a denial of medical certification. AOPA's web site allows you to research medical questions, has detailed guidance about many medical conditions, and includes AOPA's TurboMedical interactive medical application planner as well as a comprehensive listing of medications allowed by the FAA. For the best information available about your medical questions, call AOPA's Pilot Information Center at (800) USA-AOPA, or go online.
News Briefsback to top 

Eclipse Aviation said last week it has hired Paul Schumacher, formerly of Raytheon and Lockheed Martin, as vice president of manufacturing. He'll oversee the company's acceleration into high-volume production of the Eclipse 500 VLJ (last reported as 50 before the end of this year). "Paul is a highly accomplished manufacturing professional, and his leadership will be invaluable," said Peg Billson, COO of Eclipse Aviation. "We are leveraging advanced manufacturing methods like moving assembly lines and robotics to dramatically increase production efficiency and redefine the general aviation landscape. Paul's extensive experience will be a tremendous asset as we continue to pursue this overriding strategic objective." More...

If you like your airshows down-home and old-fashioned, Alabama has got one for you. The 74th Anniversary Wings and Wheels Airshow, at the Shelby County Airport (found at the "Heart of the Heart of Dixie," the Web site says), will have Full Moon barbeque, Zeigler hot dogs, Blue Bell ice cream, and Pepsi, not to mention airplane rides for all comers, all day long, for $20 to $30, as long as they last. Up in the air, the Red Star Formation Team of warbirds will make its local debut, with a massive formation flyover of Yaks and Nanchang aircraft. The show began as the National Air Carnival in 1932, and may be the longest-running annual airshow in the world. More...

New VFLITE™ Weight & Balance Visualizer — Fly Safer, Optimize Your Aircraft Performance, & Save Fuel!
This easy-to-use Windows® program lets you balance your aircraft quickly and safely, with loading output shown on unique profile, arm, and moment graphics. Out-of-limits situations are simple to fix — just click on the fields to change the weights! Key features include on-screen warnings, drag & drop loading elements, custom presets, and aircraft data. Only $39.95 for most popular aircraft. Now available online.
News in Briefback to top 

Comair pilots now are being warned about incorrect charts for LEX...
Flight students in NY will have to undergo background checks...
Boeing's 747 Large Cargo Freighter flew for the first time Saturday...
AD requires inspections of some Hartzell propeller hubs...
USAF will destroy its entire fleet of 110 T-3A Firefly airplanes. More...

What have you heard? There might be something to it. If you've heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email tonewstips@avweb.com. Our best stories start with your tips. More...

Garmin 396 vs. Flight Cheetah with XM Weather Comparison
How does the Garmin 396 really compare to the Flight Cheetah with XM Weather?  Check out this link to find out.
(866) 443-3342
Featuresback to top 



Say Again? #67: The Book and Beyond
AVweb's Don Brown is a big fan of quoting "The Book," but there's more than one book to read and lots of information out there to help you become a better and safer pilot. More...

A new in-depth interview is posted online each Friday. As for Monday, Lycoming's latest crankshaft problem is now a legal one. AVweb spoke with Robert Mills who is handling the case against Lycoming. Click through to listen. And check our audio news index tomorrow to hear what's next.

Find exclusive interviews featuring Cessna's Jack Pelton on his company's LSA, TCM president Bryan Lewis, NATCA president John Carr, New Piper CEO Jim Bass, Hal Shevers for Sporty's Pilot Shop, Light Sport guru Dan Johnson, Excel Jet's Bob Bornhofen, Adam Aircraft's Joe Walker, FAA administrator Marion Blakey, Cirrus Design's Alan Klapmeier and more. AVweb's Podcast index, is online, now. You'll hear things you won't find anywhere else.


Tired of the High Cost of Fuel? GAMIjectors Are the Answer!
Don't be grounded by sky-high gas prices. Install GAMIjectors, and you could see up to a 20% cut in your aircraft's fuel bill. Balanced fuel/air ratios make your aircraft's engine run smoother, cooler, and more efficiently. Call 888-FLY-GAMI, or order a kit online for your Continental or Lycoming engine.
Your Favorite FBO'sback to top 

For local prices, enter your U.S. ZIP Code or Airport Identifier:
Fuel prices provided weekly by AirNav,
based on prices from the past 2 weeks.
Changes are relative to last week.

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Beck's Helena U-Pump at KHLN, Helena, MT.

Offering up Beck's, Bruce Riter told us, "Clean & modern pilot lounge including kitchen & shower; nice late-model courtesy cars; cheapest fuel anywhere; a local told us the operator sells fuel just above cost & puts the markup into amenities for pilots. Hats off to the operators of this facility!"

Keep those nominations coming.

Click here to nominate your favorite FBO and here for complete contest rules

AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBO's in the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here next Monday!


Attention, Piper Owners and Pilots!
The Piper Flyer Association (PFA) provides parts locating, tech support, a monthly member magazine, online forums, national and regional events, an annual convention, seminars, and more. With a one-year membership for $39, access the needed information to expand your knowledge and get more enjoyment from owning and flying your Piper aircraft. The PFA is located on the Waupaca Municipal Airport in Wisconsin, just 35 miles NW of Oshkosh. For more information, and to request a sample copy of the magazine, click here.
AVwebBizback to top 

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 TAS600 — Because Two Antennas Are Better than One!
Whether you're flying in a busy terminal area, navigating a long cross-country, or hovering over a city, seeing and avoiding traffic requires having the right information in real time. Avidyne's TAS600 Traffic Advisory Systems, with dual-antenna technology, provide significantly improved signal coverage and target tracking, enabling faster updates and enhanced performance over single-antenna systems, for maximum safety. Starting at $9,990, Avidyne's TAS600 Series makes premium performance, active-surveillance traffic alerting affordable for virtually every general aviation aircraft. Visit Avidyne online.
QOTWback to top 

This week, AVweb's "QOTW" is targeted at those of you who are considering becoming airplane owners. Given the realities of your life and current situation, what's your preference? Tell us!
Plus: What do AVweb readers think is the root cause of the current controller crisis? More...

Whether Your IFR Ticket Is Recent or Signed by Lindberg ...
The IFR environment is constantly changing. You need to keep informed. IFR Refresher is the publication for you if you're serious about flying IFR. No other publication can help maintain your flying and decision-making skills. Order your subscription online for savings from the regular rate.
POTWback to top 

If you enjoy this week's gawking at this week's "POTW" winners half as much as we did, then you're in for a treat!  Despite a dip in submission numbers, this week's entries were top-notch.  (Just goes to show that quality and quantity are two very different animals, indeed.)  Of barely 60 photos, we pushed almost 40 of them into our "contender" pile from the get-go.  Naturally, that made choosing a winner extra tough this week, but we think things worked out nicely.  Once we finally decided on a top photo, we peeked at the name associated with it and were happy to see John Andrew Karas's name.  John's submitted some terrific photos in the past, so he's long overdue for an official AVweb baseball cap.

(Remember:  We only give away one "POTW" hat each week — to the top photo submitter — but we do give away plenty of exposure, good feelings, and gratitude by running a bunch of runners-up right here on AVweb every Thursday.  So if you've got a flying picture you'd like to share with, do it!  Browsing your photos is the highlight of our week, folks!) More...



AVweb's Flight Explorer Personal Edition® Now Integrated with ATCSimulator® 2
With this new edition of Flight Explorer, you can view air traffic for the entire U.S., Canada, and New Zealand or zoom in to one airport or single aircraft; monitor and display real-time FAA delay information; display TFRs and SUAs; and much more. Click here for more information and to subscribe.

Ensure Yourself and Your Passengers' Safety for Under $149!
CO Guardian has reliable and proven CO detectors in both portable and panel-mount models starting at $149. You can't afford not to purchase from CO Guardian. Order online.

Flying Flies Cessna's Mustang, the Newest Light Jet
Plus, Flying tells readers how to stay safe and legal in "The New VFR" complicated airspace; offers a review of the Bartlesville biplane fly-in celebration; serves up the EAA's Q&A regarding the new Sport Pilot/Light Sport Aircraft Rule; discusses unrecoverable spins; and much more. Order your money-saving subscription online.

Light Plane Maintenance's October Issue Is Loaded!
Light Plane Maintenance gives readers the factory test protocols and user insights for a retraction test; real and not-so-real torque wrench myths; maintenance record-keeping can cost you if you're not careful; proper methodologies for age cracks, where to find the repair requirements, and an overview of how to proceed; and issues with battery chargers and how changes in our flying styles have generated a need to resort to bench battery chargers as a matter of routine maintenance. Go online for more information and to subscribe.

Names Behind the Newsback to top 

AVwebFlash is a twice-weekly summary of the latest news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

Today's issue was written by news writer Mary Grady (bio).

Click here to send a letter to the editor. (Please let us know if your letter is not intended for publication.)

Comments or questions about the news should be sent here.

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

If you're having trouble reading this newsletter in its HTML-rich format (or if you'd prefer a lighter, simpler format for your PDA or handheld device), there's also a text-only version of AVwebFlash. For complete instructions on making the switch, click here.

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