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SECRETARY PETERS: CHANGE IS IN THE AIR
Mary Peters, recently
appointed as head of the U.S. Department of Transportation, says traffic
is up, air traffic controllers are retiring and safety equipment needs
to be upgraded -- all of that costs money, and it will have to come from
somewhere. Peters toured the GA world of Wichita, Kan., on Monday, and
said she would "listen to everyone." Since the legislation that
determines where the FAA's money comes from is up for reauthorization
next year, the debate over user fees versus other funding measures is
pressing. "We must rethink the aviation financing system," she said, and
asked for all segments of the industry to weigh in. She stopped at a
Cessna aircraft assembly plant and visited a nearby FAA control tower at
GROUPS LOBBY AGAINST USER FEES
Peters spent the day with GA
supporters, and after the tour, she told reporters she heard "loud and
clear" that user fees would have a negative impact on the GA industry.
When asked if the day left her leaning against user fees, Sen. Pat
Roberts (R-Kan.), who accompanied her on the tour and opposes aviation
user fees, pulled Peters toward him and told reporters: "She's leaning
over here." Peters concurred, "I am," according to The Associated Press. More...
FEE DEBATE CONTINUES IN D.C.
While Peters was in Wichita,
AOPA President Phil Boyer was in Washington, D.C., speaking out
against aviation user fees during a panel discussion at an air traffic
control conference. The topic: what's "fair" when it comes to paying for
the air traffic control system? "Grandma in seat 28B should only have to
pay her fair share," said Sharon Pinkerton, a spokeswoman for the
airlines. But Boyer countered: "Should grandma have to pay the true cost
to get a first-class letter to Alaska, rather than 39 cents? Should
highway users in New York help pay for an interstate highway in
Montana?" Boyer said the air traffic control system is built to meet the
peak demands of the airlines, and general aviation uses the excess
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FLIGHTS RESTRICTED IN BRAZIL
As Brazil continues to cope with
the repercussions of the Boeing 737 midair accident that killed 154
people last month -- the country's worst air disaster ever -- aviation
authorities there have restricted private flying in certain airspace
segments. Air traffic controllers said they have to impose the
restrictions so they can try to reduce delays for commercial flights,
according to the ASI
Group. Controllers already have increased the minimum spacing for
commercial flights from 5 to 10 nautical miles, and that change has been
causing delays. The new restrictions mean private flights now are banned
from 0730 to 1200 and from 1700 to 2000 local time, ASI said.
CONTROLLERS NOT TALKING
Air traffic staffing in Brazil is
down because the 10 controllers who worked in Manaus and Brasilia on the
day of the crash have been taken off duty to undergo psychiatric
treatment. They were scheduled to testify before investigators this
week, but said they cannot talk until after Nov. 13, when their
treatment is complete, according to The Associated Press. Controllers across Brazil
yesterday enacted a "work-to-rule" campaign to protest the
situation. The controllers say they were already overworked,
understaffed and underpaid, and now they are coping with even less
staffing and that the new airspace rules are too much. In the last week,
news analyses have increasingly questioned the role of ATC in the crash,
while earlier reports tended to focus on the American pilots of the
Legacy jet. More...
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CHALLENGER PILOTS DIDN'T CHECK WEIGHT AND BALANCE
Bombardier Challenger CL-600-1A11 that ran off the departure end of a
Teterboro runway while trying to take off in February 2005 was
incorrectly loaded, the NTSB
said in its final report that was released on Tuesday. The jet was
not within weight-and-balance limits and the center of gravity was well
forward of the forward takeoff limit, which prevented the airplane from
rotating upon takeoff, the Safety Board said. Neither pilot properly
checked the weight and balance before takeoff. "This accident clearly
shows what can happen when crucial operating steps are not adhered to,"
said NTSB Chairman Mark Rosenker. "When it comes to transportation
safety there are no shortcuts and it is important that operators and
flight crews ensure that proper procedures are followed at all times."
WARNS OF AVIDYNE GLITCH
Owners of Cirrus, Columbia and Piper
airplanes with Avidyne primary flight displays were advised by the FAA
on Tuesday of a possible glitch in the system. The FAA Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin said
a modification is available to eliminate the possibility that the system
will display misleading attitude and heading information. Avidyne has
already issued a Service Alert to owners. The FAA recommends that pilots
using the Avidyne panel should pay increased attention to standard and
emergency operating procedures when flying in instrument metrological
conditions. Avidyne can modify the units to prevent the problem, and
owners should call Avidyne to ensure that modification is completed, the
FAA said. More...
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SYSTEMS MOVING FORWARD, FAA SAYS
Tests of an airborne networking system that will help make
possible the next-generation air transportation system (NGATS) were
successfully completed over the summer, the FAA said this week. The
trials showed that messages can be relayed air-to-air, enabling radio
communications to reach very long distances, greater than the curvature
of the earth normally allows. This capability was achieved by
establishing connectivity between a distant aircraft, an
intermediate-placed aircraft and a ground station. Tests were conducted
using a Bombardier Global 5000 business jet. The project engineers
successfully relayed messages and simulated flight-planning information
from one aircraft to another, and then to the ground station, over an
extended airborne network. More...
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LSA ON EXHIBIT NEXT WEEK
starts a week from today in Palm Springs, Calif., and among a few other
things, Cessna's new Light Sport Aircraft will be there. The airplane
flew for the first time just a couple of weeks ago. CEO Jack Pelton says
he expects to decide by early next year whether Cessna will produce the
airplane. "An important part of our thought process in looking at LSA is
the value in terms of new pilot starts," Pelton said. "Experience has
shown that Cessna brand loyalty is a powerful force in our success, and
we believe this new category of aircraft could provide a conduit for new
pilots to grow through the Cessna product line in the years ahead."
Evektor flew its new SuperCobra for
the first time last week, from its base in the Czech Republic. The
all-metal single-engine four-seater features retractable landing gear
and is powered by a 315-hp Lycoming IO-580A1B. "It's a real predator in
the sky," said test pilot Josef Charvat. "It will be a fantastic pilot
touring airplane." The airplane is an upgrade of Evektor's 200-hp model,
the VUT100 Cobra. The SuperCobra is designed to reach a top cruise speed
of 175 knots, with a range of 1,000 nm and useful load of 1,260 pounds.
The cabin is the widest in its class, the company says, and a glass
cockpit is standard. Evektor hopes to achieve EASA and FAA certification
in early 2008. More...
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TO OVERHAUL PART 21 REGS
The FAA is proposing a major rewrite of the Part 21 regulations
affecting the production of aviation parts, the Aircraft Electronics
Association (AEA) said this week. According to the FAA, the update
is needed to address changes in the global aviation market since the
current rules were written back in the 1960s. The proposed changes
affect every element of producing aircraft parts including standard
parts, owner-produced parts and parts produced as part of maintenance.
Primarily, the proposed rule would standardize requirements for
production approval holders; require production approval holders to
issue airworthiness approvals for aircraft engines, propellers and other
aviation parts; require manufacturers to mark all parts and components;
and revise export airworthiness approval requirements to facilitate
global manufacturing. More...
If Brokers Say They Cover the Whole Market, Why
Can't They Get a Quote from Us?
The fact is brokers can't get a quote from Avemco
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easy-to-understand policies. So if a broker tells you he covers the
whole market, he's only telling you half the story. Call Avemco
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visit online to hear the rest of the
A Piper landed on a Tulsa racetrack instead of the
A Continental 757 landed on a taxiway at
An Alaska Airlines 737 took off from the wrong runway at
Two airliners clipped wings while taxiing at
Mooney Aerospace Group will become a private
PATCO says it will proceed with a class-action suit
against the FAA. More...
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/
AVweb posts audio news on Mondays, plus a new in-depth
interview each Friday. Last Friday's
podcastcontains exclusive news about rumored changes to the ADIZ.
AVweb's podcast index
includes interviews with Adam Aircraft chairman Rick Adam and New Piper
CEO Jim Bass, recorded live at the recent NBAA Convention in Orlando. Monday's news
summary covers the rash of Cirrus accidents in recent weeks and
Cirrus' appeals to pilots to fly within their limits; a recent VLJ
forecast; GAMA aircraft exports; the new LAAS contract; the law officer
that beat an FAA rap; a controller that allegedly fell asleep at the
scope; FAA rejection of AOPA's efforts for reduced medical requirements;
and use of aircraft to help predict weather. Plus: Listen in to
interview with Cirrus' Dale Klapmeier about the current state of
Cirrus Serial Number 1, courtesty of our sister publication, Aviation
Consumer. Remember: In AVweb's podcasts, you'll hear things you
won't find anywhere else.
Garmin 396 vs. Flight Cheetah with XM Weather
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OF THE WEEK: SCOTTSDALE AIRCENTER
AVweb's "FBO of
the Week" ribbon goes to Scottsdale AirCenter at KSDF in Scottsdale,
AVweb reader Alan Tipps praised the friendly service
received at Scottsdale.
"The line-staff are totally heads-up,
proactive, professional and courteous, and on-the-ball. Just about every
time we are into Scottsdale, the line staff anticipates our needs. Their
ramp management is progressive and efficient, and I find these folks to
be one of the best line crews in the country."
Keep those nominations
coming.For complete contest rules, click here.
actively seeking out the best FBOs in the country and another one,
submitted by you, will be spotlighted here next Monday!
Avidyne TAS600 Because Two Antennas Are
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Whether you're flying in a busy terminal area, navigating a long
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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
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affordable for virtually every general aviation aircraft.
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OF THE WEEK
Does the average pilot's sense of invincibility
increase when flying an aircraft with an parachute recovery system? This
week, AVweb wants to hear your opinion on the psychological effect of
airplane parachutes on a pilot. Plus: Results of last week's
question -- how much will your candidate's stance on user fees affect
your vote at the polls? More...
Final Savvy Owner Seminar in 2006 Coming to Las
Maintenance expert Mike Busch will be offering his acclaimed Savvy
at the North Las Vegas Airport (VGT) on November
17-18. In one information-packed weekend, you will learn how to have a
safer, more reliable aircraft while saving thousands on maintenance
costs, year after year.
For complete details (and to reserve your
space), click here
OF THE WEEK
Rifling through our virtual mailbox and
marveling at your photo submissions is probably our favorite part of the
work week. Every Wednesday, we download the contents of our submission
folder and go through the images one by one, picking out our favorites.
Then we make a second pass, reading all the comments and trying to pick
a winner. And finally, once we have a list of photos we plan to share
with readers in our "POTW" feature story, we go back to the server and
fish out the submitters' names to see who's getting this week's AVweb
baseball hat and who to credit for all our runner-up photos. From time
to time, we get a little extra surprise when we discover that a winning
photo's been submitted by someone we actually know! That was the
case this week, with a photo from Oregon Aero's own
Steve Badman. Steve asks a question
that we hear in e-mail quite often: "Where [have all] the skywriters
flown?" And he provides an answer: "Look no further than
Suzanne Asbury-Oliver," writes Steve, "who placed this mile-high
smoke signal in the sky over EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2006. She crafted
her signature smiley face from the cockpit of the Oregon Aero
AVWEB APPRECIATES YOUR CONTINUED SUPPORT OF
WHO BRING YOU TODAY'S NEWS AND FEATURES AT NO COST TO YOU
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Attention, Piper Owners and
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,
Truth! Aviation Consumer Is the ONLY
Unbiased Publication Available to Pilots
Because Aviation Consumer isn't supported by advertising
like other aviation publications, Aviation Consumer's editors can
tell you the unbiased truth about products and services. Be a subscriber
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no-cost use of Aviation Consumer's ratings-packed web
The Used Aircraft Guide Can Save You
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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).
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
Have a product or service to advertise on AVweb? A question on
marketing? Send it to AVweb's
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
Freedom, independence, responsibility.
Attending the AOPA Expo in
AVweb will be! This year's convention starts Thursday, November 9 and
runs through Saturday, November 11 in Palm Springs, California. We know
many of you will be on-site with us this year, so please take a moment
while you're seeing the sights to stop by our sponsors' booths. Their
patronage of AVweb makes it possible for us to deliver the high quality
of news, reviews, and information you've come to expect in your inbox
twice a week at no charge to readers. We encourage you to visit
with them at the show and thank them for their support of AVweb.
Click for a complete list of AVweb
sponsors and where to find them at the show