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AVIDYNE TO "GO SEPARATE WAYS"
Eclipse Aviation and Avidyne
have decided to terminate their relationship, Eclipse spokesman Andrew
Broom told AVweb on Sunday. The troubles between the two
companies go back to December 2005 when Eclipse announced a three-month
delay for its Model 500 very light jet due to problems with an avionics
vendor, which last summer was identified as Avidyne. Since then, the
relationship soured further and the delays became longer. "Avidyne will
no longer supply components for the Avio Total Aircraft Integration
system in the Eclipse 500. We have agreed it is in the mutual best
interest of both companies, and our customers, to wind down our
relationship and go our separate ways," Broom said. An announcement
revealing Eclipse's new suppliers and detailing its specific plans for
Avio will be made within the next two weeks, he added.
CONTROLLERS BOTCH EMERGENCY HANDLING
Dallas-Fort Worth International's regional TRACON have been given a
refresher on the meaning of the words "we need to get on the ground
right away, please" after they denied an American Airlines 757 priority
handling, despite the fact that the crew declared an emergency.
According to ABC News, which broke the story last week, the incident
happened on Aug. 31 when the crew reported a fuel shortage, possibly due
to a leak. When the crew asked for a straight-in approach to runway 17C
to get the airplane and its passengers on the ground quickly, the TRACON
controller twice denied the request. In the end, the aircraft circled to
Runway 31R and landed uneventfully. But the tapewhich we review in
today's podcast has been used as a training aid to
remind controllers of the nuances of pilot phraseology.
THE CIRRUS ACCIDENTS MYTH
An article recently printed by the
Examiner.com takes critical aim at Cirrus Design,
picking from a recent NTSB report regarding the Cory Lidle crash in New
York city and citing crash statistics it says give the SR20 and SR22 a
"spotty record." While the article notes that Lidle had time in type
that most insurers would find anemic and that the NTSB cited he was not
trained by nor was he flying with a Cirrus qualified instructor, it adds
that the SR20 and 22 have suffered "more than 40 incidents [in sum]
since 2001." As is often the case in the popular press, the
Examiners article fails to put its reporting in context.
Exhaustive research by AVweb sister publications Aviation
Safety and Aviation Consumer found that the Cirrus fleet has
a relatively good overall accident record 4.1 accidents per
100,000 hours versus 6.2 for the entire GA fleet. The Cirrus fleet fatal
accident rate is 1.4 per 100,000 hours, only slightly higher than the GA
average of 1.2. More...
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APPROVES ADS-B DEPLOYMENT
FAA brass have approved nationwide deployment of Automatic
Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast as the cornerstone of the Next
Generation Air Transportation System. The agencys Joint Resources
Council (JRC), which reviews major acquisitions, believes full
implementation of ADS-B will give pilots the in-cockpit information they
need to play a role in maintaining separation from other traffic and
that, combined with the more accurate position data available to
controllers, will, theoretically at least, allow more airplanes in the
same amount of airspace. "With real-time situational awareness in the
cockpit, aircraft will be able to fly closer together, resulting in a
significant increase in airspace capacity," the FAA says.
DEVIL'S IN THE DETAILS
ADS-B deployment will be a massive
undertaking, requiring new gear to be installed in ground facilities all
over the U.S. But while the FAA is big on sweeping statements about how
the government and the successful bidder will create this entirely new
way of doing business, its short on detail about a key component
of the plan. To work, every airplane using airspace under ADS-B control
must be equipped with the avionics that receive and transmit the
position data. That gear currently costs thousands of dollars per
installation, and so far all that has been offered to mitigate those
costs are unverifiable assumptions that the price will drop as demand
FSS HUB GOES LIVE
As preparations continue for modernization
of the airspace system, the recently privatized flight service station
(FSS) system reached a milestone last week when the switches were
flicked at the first of three "hub" FSSs at Dulles Airport near
Washington, D.C. The others will be in Prescott, Ariz., and Dallas. The
hubs will act as regional command posts that will allow Lockheed Martin
to reduce the number of actual field stations from 58 to 16.
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SUPERIOR JUGS PULLED
The FAA has issued an Airworthiness Directivethat takes effect March 12
and covers 1,354 Superior Air Parts cylinder assemblies used in new
Superior engines and as replacement parts in Lycoming four- and
six-cylinder mills and Continental sixes. The affected cylinders
didnt get proper heat treating and can come apart, as nine have
done so far. Since that would ruin your day in a hurry, the FAA has gone
straight to final rule on this AD and it becomes effective in two weeks.
NEW AIR FORCE CHIEF TACKLES ATC
Brazilian President Luiz
Inacio Lula da Silva has named Brig. Juniti Saito to take over the
countrys air force, and along with that comes the unenviable task
of sorting out its increasingly troubled air traffic control system. The
air force oversees ATC there and, since the collision between a Gol
Airlines Boeing 737 and a U.S.-bound Embraer Legacy last Sept. 29,
problems with the system seem to be escalating. Flight delays are common
and the controllers, who are civilian, are complaining about workload
and conditions as the government investigates the role of controllers in
the crash, which killed all 154 people aboard the 737. The two American
pilots of the Legacy are also under investigation. They were able to
land the damaged business jet, with five passengers on board, safely at
a military base in the Amazon jungle. More...
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RESUMES JET TESTING
Flight International says Grob Aerospace conducted a
test flight of the first prototype of its SPn light business jet last
Friday, marking the resumption of a program halted three months ago when
the second prototype was lost in a crash in Germany, killing the
sole-occupant pilot. German authorities have since speculated that the
crash was caused by elevator flutter, which led to separation of some of
the control surface and part of the horizontal stabilizer. Test pilot
Gerard Guillaumaud, 45, a former French air force pilot, was killed.
SUES FAA OVER LEX CRASH
As expected, Comair has filed suit
against the FAA for alleged negligence in the crash of a Bombardier
regional jet that killed 49 people last August in Lexington, Ky. After
the crash, in which the pilots mistakenly took off on a runway too short
for the CRJ, it was revealed that only one controller was on duty at the
time instead of the required two. The controller cleared the aircraft to
the correct runway, but had turned away from the windows to do other
work as the CRJ rolled. The airline has not specified damages sought in
the suit. More...
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EAGLES PROTECTED FROM AIR-TOUR RULE
EAA and the FAA have reached a deal that will allow Young Eagles flights
to continue unhindered by the new rules affecting sightseeing flights.
Some parts of the rule (like the one that bans charity flights in
uncertified airplanes) naturally raised concerns at EAA but it all got
ironed out in meetings in Washington, D.C., that included FAA
Administrator Marion Blakey. "Everyone we met with at FAA assured us
that there was no intent to harm the Young Eagles program in any manner
through the air-tour rule," EAA President Tom Poberezny said.
PILOT "RECKLESS" WITH LT. GOV. ON BOARD
The pilot of an Ohio
Air National Guard two-place F-16 with Lt. Gov. Bruce Johnson as a
backseater broke several FAA regs in his high-speed tour of Columbus
last summer. According to the Columbus Dispatch, the unidentified
pilot buzzed the city at speeds as high as 500 knots and altitudes as
low as 2,100 feet last Aug. 17. FAA regs restrict speed in that area to
250 knots and, according to the agency's report on the flight, the pilot
did not have clearance to fly below 10,000 feet. That, says the FAA,
means the pilot violated a regulation banning careless or reckless
flying. But the report will likely be the end of the matter.
Columbia Introduces 2007 Models
The 2007 Columbias
have arrived. Fresh for this year are new,
dynamic paint schemes for both the Columbia 350
as well as a host of thoughtful and unique features for the discerning
aircraft owner. See how your new Columbia
will look with the
interactive online Paint Selector.
Just go online and click on the
"Paint Your Passion" icon
Former Mooney CEO joins New Zealand's Alpha
Dayton uses aviation in marketing plan
Airport may buy adjacent park
Predator may be based in Puerto
Columbus to host Air Force Heritage
ASO A Better Way to Sell Your Aircraft
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TO THE NEW FACE OF AVWEB
AVweb.com, the worlds best Web site for
general aviation news and information, is now even better thanks to a
redesigned home page. The revamped home page has more content, easier
navigation, a more user-friendly podcast interface and better graphics
to complement AVweb's real-time general aviation news, incisive
commentary and unparalleled feature reporting. More...
Tired of the High Cost of Fuel? GAMIjectors Are
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
order a kit online for your Continental
or Lycoming engine
AVweb posts audio news on Mondays, plus a new
in-depth interview each Friday. In last Friday's
podcast, you'll find an interview with Eclipse's Vern Raburn on
aviation user fees. And AVweb's podcast index includes interviews
with B-29 restoration program manager Cliff Gaston; NBAA's Ed Bolen;
Alaska pilot Cable Wells; NATCA's Paul Rinaldi; AOPA's Kathleen
Vascouselos; Maule Air's Mikel Boorom; Professsional Aviation
Maintenance Association president Brian Finnegan; aviation forecaster
Richard Aboulafia; NORAD; Bill Lear, Jr.; and NATA President Jim Coyne.
podcast, Aviation Safety's Paul Bertorelli examines an August
2006 botched emergency handling at Dallas Fort Worth Airport. Remember:
In AVweb's podcasts, you'll hear things you won't find anywhere
to you by Bose Corporation. More...
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OF THE WEEK: EXECUTIVE FLIGHT CENTER
AVweb's "FBO of the Week"
ribbon goes to Executive Flight Center at KMDQ in
AVweb reader Breck Hopkins said the
personnel at the FBO made his literally messy situation
"Executive offered the best and most helpful service I
have experienced in 49 years of GA travel. I had a bird strike en route,
and though it was frigid and gusty, they cheerfully spent more than a
half hour scrubbing the remains off the windshield and wing. We met
someone there to look at an airplane, and they offered to put the
airplane in a hangar to make the inspection more comfortable, shuttled
us back and forth to the hangar and let us use the crew car. The
facilities are first rate, too. I will go out of my way to stop at
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!
Pilot Journey Isn't Just for Students &
Instructors; There's Something for Everyone
You know Pilot Journey
's Discovery Flight
converting leads to students. However, all pilots can find something at
: Pilot e-mail accounts, pilot eCards; a pilot
cruise with seminars; AvCareers, where position wanted and positions
available are listed; and much more.
Pilot Journey is the pilot's
OF THE WEEK: THE FLYING LAWNMOWER (AND THIS TIME IT'S NOT A FIGURE OF
There are two videos we receive (and stumble across)
more often than any others on the web. Both videos are testaments to
human ingenuity and technical achievement and they never fail to
raise a giggle when we see them. We've held them in reserve for a while,
just in case we needed them to brighten a particularly rough Monday
morning. (Plus, we were afraid that it we ran these videos, people would
stop sending them to us. And that would ruin the pleasant surprise of
watching these videos at 4:00 on a Thursday afternoon and laughing our
heads off.) But the time has come, at last, to unveil the first of our
Two Most-Submitted Videos: the flying lawnmower! (Click
through to watch.) More...
|Overheard in IFR Magazine's "On the
Heard at Gainesville, Florida
Cessna: Gainesville tower, Cessna Three Four Five,
seven west with Tango.
Tower: Cessna One Two Three Four Five,
cleared to land Runway six.
Cessna: We'd prefer Runway one
zero, we have some passengers to drop off at the
Tower: Cessna Three Four Five, you can't do that, you
have to use the general aviation FBO.
Cessna: We called ahead
and they said we could drop them off as long as we staved clear of the
Tower: I don't know who told you that, but I'll ask the
Tower (a short time later): Cessna Three Four
Five. I'm sorry, but you can't taxi to the terminal. However, if you'd
like I can clear you for a low approach, and your passengers can jump
out as you fly by.
Cessna: (Laughs) How about I just use Runway
THE AVWEBFLASH TEAM
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
Contributing Editor Russ
and Editor In Chief Chad
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
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Aviate, navigate, communicate.