AVwebFlash Complete Issue: Volume 13, Number 29b

July 19, 2007

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
Adam, Cirrus, Columbia, Diamond, Liberty ...
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» Visit Teledyne-Continental Motors (TCM) in booths 76-102 at AirVenture
Top News back to top 

Honda To Build VLJ Engines In North Carolina

Honda Aero (not to be confused with sister subsidiary Honda Aircraft) announced on Tuesday that it will establish its corporate headquarters and a state-of-the-art jet engine manufacturing plant in Burlington, N.C., adjacent to the Burlington-Alamance Regional Airport. The $27 million, 102,400-square-foot facility will include office space, a production plant and an engine test cell. Production will begin in late 2010 with the manufacture of the GE Honda HF120 turbofan engine, which will power both the HondaJet and Spectrum Aeronautical's Freedom twinjet. The plant is expected to turn out about 200 engines per year. "This is a major step forward for our company, as we move to establish the home of our jet engine manufacturing operations here in Burlington," said Honda Aero President and CEO Fumitaka Hasegawa. GE Honda collaboration on the HF120 began in early 2005. The first core test of the HF120 was conducted earlier this year, which is to be followed by full-engine testing by year-end. The HF120 is the most fuel-efficient engine in its class, the company said, and it is expected to surpass the future anticipated emissions standards by as much as 20 percent.

Schumer: FAA's Blakey Should Resign

The nation's airspace system is a mess, with airports overloaded and travelers plagued by delays, and that's the fault of FAA Administrator Marion Blakey, says New York Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. On Tuesday he called for Blakey to resign before her term ends on Sept. 30, The Associated Press reports. "She has engaged in a counterproductive fight with the air traffic controllers, cut the number of controllers that are needed, and they sometimes lash back," Schumer said. Delays have been particularly bad at New York's three major airports -- Newark, Kennedy and LaGuardia -- with 38 percent of all flights from January to April this year either late or canceled, according to the AP. The blame "falls clearly in the lap of the FAA and the FAA administrator," said Schumer. "The leadership at the FAA time and again has failed. So now it is time for that leadership to change." Blakey has already made clear she is eager to pursue other opportunities and is not interested in serving another term, according to The Wall Street Journal. However, her tenure could be extended until a replacement is named, which might not happen until after the next president takes office. The FAA said on Wednesday that the agency has taken "aggressive action to enhance safety and address delays in the New York area."

AVweb At EAA AirVenture

If you can't make it to EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., next week, then you'll be happy to know that AVweb will bring the show to your desktop. We'll be publishing daily issues, podcasts and video posted directly from the show grounds to keep you up-to-date with the latest news from AirVenture. And for those lucky enough to be going to the airshow, don't forget to stop by AVweb's booth to meet the editors (schedule).
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» Visit LightSPEED Aviation in booths 2010, 2019, & 2023 at AirVenture
News Briefs back to top 

FAA Certifies Quest Kodiak Turboprop

Quest Aircraft Company of Sandpoint, Idaho, on Wednesday announced that its Kodiak, a 10-place single-engine turboprop utility airplane, received type certification from the FAA. The rugged all-aluminum airplane is designed for use on short and unimproved runways and is float-capable to optimize its usefulness for backcountry operators. According to Quest, the Kodiak can take off in less than 700 feet with a useful load of 3,450 pounds and climb at more than 1,700 feet per minute. The Garmin G1000 integrated avionics suite is standard equipment on the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6-powered airplane. "The Kodiak was designed with and for mission and humanitarian aviation organizations to perform under extremely rigorous conditions in the most remote regions of the world, so the bar was set high," said Quest Aircraft President and CEO Paul Schaller. "During both Quest's and the FAA's testing, we pushed the envelope and are pleased that the airplane successfully achieved the desired performance." The prototype has logged more than 1,000 hours of flight time and S/N 001, the first fully conforming production aircraft, has flown several hundred hours since entering the flight-test program. S/N 002, the first aircraft to be delivered to a customer, is currently on the production line and the company said it has a three-year backlog of orders in hand, though deliveries may come sooner as production ramps up. The airplane will be on display next week at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis.

Congress Examines Pilot Medical Record Fraud

Does the FAA need to do more to ensure that pilots are not lying about dangerous medical problems so they can keep their certification? That's the question that was discussed in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday at a hearing before the House Subcommittee on Aviation. Investigators with the DOT Office of Inspector General say they have discovered thousands of "egregious cases" of airmen lying about debilitating medical conditions on their applications for airman medical certificates. The FAA said it would be too labor-intensive to cross-check and verify every application, and the safety risk would not justify the resources it would consume. The subcommittee said that response was "unacceptable," and this week's hearing was part of the continuing effort to address the issue. Among the witnesses was AOPA President Phil Boyer, who proposed some simple steps to inform and educate pilots and cross-check a random sample of applications. "Pilots are law-abiding people, and they don't want to defraud the government," Boyer said. "And they don't want to fly unsafely." He said that only 0.25 percent of all general aviation accidents were caused by medical incapacitation, and only nine accidents in nine years were caused by the incapacitation of a pilot flying with a fraudulent medical certificate.

Visit Aircraft Spruce during AirVenture at booths 1022-1029 for show specials and vendor demonstrations and a complimentary copy of the new 2007–2008 catalog. Promotions will apply to a vast selection of products including Bose, Flightcom, J.P.I., Tempest, LP Aero, Sennheiser, LightSPEED, Rosen Sunvisor, and Unison. Complimentary shipping available on show orders (doesn't apply to oversize or hazardous goods). Call 1-877-4-SPRUCE or visit Aircraft Spruce online.

» Visit Aircraft Spruce & Specialty in booths 1022-1029 at AirVenture
News Briefs back to top 

Brazilian Congress Blames Legacy Pilots For Midair

An inquiry conducted by the lower house in Brazil's Congress just concluded U.S. pilots Jean Paul Paladino and Joseph Lepore, who were flying the Embraer Legacy operated by U.S.-based ExcelAire during a midair collision last September with a Gol Transportes Aereos Boeing 737-800, are partially to blame for the fatal accident. Meanwhile, another congressional inquiry, along with an investigation by Brazil's accident investigation team, continues. The completed report found Paladino and Lepore were insufficiently trained in operating the Legacy and negligently disregarded ICAO and Brazilian aviation regulations, engaged in "imprudent handling of the aircraft" and had "poor situational awareness." The inquiry concluded the two pilots should be charged with involuntary manslaughter by having placed an aircraft or vessel at risk. Additionally, the inquiry determined three air traffic controllers had committed the same crime, while one controller should be indicted on voluntary manslaughter. The two pilots and three controllers could face sentences of up to 12 years; the lone controller faces up to 20 years.

Yet the Brazilian Congress' report -- established to look into existing problems with the country's ATC system and corruption, as well as the midair collision -- has come under fire, especially from the body's opposition party. Critics of the filed report point to a lack of technical expertise on the part of those supposedly elected officials lacking an industry background and conducting the inquiry. No timetable was set for the Brazilian Senate to complete its inquiry; the third investigation, being conducted by Brazil's Centre for Investigation of Aeronautical Accidents (CENIPA), is expected to be finished by late August or early September.

Are Three Chutes Better Than One?

The usefulness of a whole-airplane parachute has been well-proven by the folks at Ballistic Recovery Systems (203 lives saved at last count), but an upstart company in New Jersey thinks there might be a better way. Aviation Safety Resources said this week it has formed "a distinguished team of aviation experts" to bring to market a three-chute emergency landing system for small aircraft. The system aims to lower the aircraft safely to the ground in three sections, separating the wings (and their fuel) from the cabin. An early version of the system was tested successfully in 1967, according to the company. "The fact is, three parachutes are better than one," said Dario Manfredi, whose father developed the original design. "ASR's TriChute technology improves upon existing single-chute designs to safely land six-passenger aircraft, and, down the road, even commuter jets, larger aircraft and helicopters. We believe it will become the new standard in aircraft design, defining a new era in aviation safety." The company is working to raise $3.2 million in seed money to fund development and testing of a model.

XM WX Satellite Weather Uses a Continuous Satellite Broadcast to Deliver Graphical Weather Data to the Cockpit
Pilots view and interact with the data — including radar, winds, METARs, lightning, and more — on compatible MFDs, EFBs, and PDAs from a wide range of industry partners, as well as on laptop PCs. The situational awareness afforded by XM WX Satellite Weather allows pilots to enjoy their journeys with more confidence and comfort than ever before. For more information, please visit XMWXweather.com.
News Briefs back to top 

A320 Crash In Brazil Prompts Calls For Change

Thousands of runways around the world have inadequate overrun safety areas, the International Federation of Air Line Pilots' Associations said on Wednesday, a day after a TAM Airlines Airbus A320 crashed in Brazil, killing at least 189 people. The crew had been trying to land on a wet runway at Sao Paulo Cagonhas Airport, and took off again when they were unable to stop. The airplane cleared the airport fence and a highway but crashed into a gas station and a building before exploding into flames. The 6,362-foot runway has often been criticized as too short. Runway-end safety areas should be established at all airports with airline operations, IFALPA said, with an overrun space at least 800 feet long or an arrestor system that could halt an errant aircraft. This week's crash is now the worst air disaster ever for Brazil, superseding the death toll of 154 in last September's crash of a Gol Airlines 737 that collided in midair with an Embraer Legacy business jet. The NTSB has sent a team to Brazil to assist in the investigation.

P-51 Owner Killed In First Non-Supervised Flight

John McKittrick, 42, of Thousand Oaks, Calif., was killed Sunday morning as he practiced takeoffs and landings on his own for the first time in his vintage P-51D Mustang. McKittrick, an experienced pilot, had been flying with an instructor and landed at Camarillo Airport. The instructor had just gotten out of the aircraft and told tower controllers that McKittrick would be soloing the airplane and would stay in the pattern, an FAA spokesman told the Ventura County Star. According to the FAA, the airplane bounced on landing, ran off the side of the runway and flipped. The vintage Mustang broke apart in the accident, but there was no post-crash fire. The airplane had been scheduled to appear at the Gathering of Mustangs & Legends this September in Ohio.

Don't Trust Your Fairy Godmother
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Integrate 10,000 hours of specialized upset recovery expertise into your safety training today. Call (866) 359-4273 or get Upset Recovery Training info online.
News Briefs back to top 

Jets, Cubs, Lots More, Coming To Oshkosh Next Week

Here at AVweb, we're packing our bags and checking our NOTAMs to fly into Oshkosh, Wis., for the start of EAA AirVenture on Monday. We'll be there every day to bring you all the news, in addition to photos, podcasts and video, direct to your e-mail inbox. Among the new aircraft we'll be looking at are the two new light jets from Epic Aircraft, the single-engine Victory and the twin-engine Elite, which will make their world debut at the show on Monday morning. Both jets made their first flights this summer and will be available for sale as owner-built experimentals later this year and eventually as FAA-certified copies. At the other end of the complexity scale, CubCrafters will debut what it calls "an all-new, second-generation light sport airplane" on Tuesday. That model will be "stronger, lighter, newer, and better," the company says. If you're heading to Oshkosh, you can find all the info you need, including the NOTAM, at EAA's AirVenture Web site. If you can't make it, stay tuned to AVweb.

No Room For An Airport? It's A Big Ocean

OceanWorks, of Encinitas, Calif., says it has a solution for the San Diego Airport Authority, which has tried for years to find a site for a new airfield in crowded Southern California. The company is proposing to build an airport 10 miles off the coast. "The offshore option is the best and apparently the only viable one for San Diego," says OceanWorks CEO Adam Englund. "We aim to make it the most secure, self-sustaining, economically vibrant, and greenest airport ever built." On Monday, OceanWorks sent a notice of claim to federal, state and local agencies to gain exclusive rights to 40,000 square miles of ocean for the purpose of developing, building and operating an international airport. Proposals for getting passengers to the airport include fast ferries, a floating bridge, and underground or underwater tunnels. Advantages to the offshore site include eliminating noise complaints and enabling aircraft to land safely even in foggy conditions, the company said. In its claim, the company says it intends to use the area for an airport and also for industrial, commercial, farming and residential uses "up to and including ocean-based metropolises." Englund estimates the airport would cost $20 billion, according to KNBC News. Japan currently operates five offshore airports, but they are closer to shore and all have an above-ground connection with the mainland.

When It Comes to Aircraft Insurance, the Choice Is Easy
The AOPA Insurance Agency is the only agency offering the built-in expertise of AOPA's 66+ years' commitment to general aviation and the only agency qualified to carry the AOPA name. 411,000+ pilots trust AOPA, so why call anyone else? One call to the AOPA Insurance Agency and you'll have multiple quotes from major A-rated underwriters in minutes. Call AOPA Insurance Agency for a complimentary quote at (800) 622-2672, or go online.

» Visit Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association (AOPA) in booths 164-166 at AirVenture
News In Brief back to top 

On The Fly

Thielert says it will double the size of its manufacturing plant in Altenburg, Germany, and add more staff to meet demand for its general-aviation diesel piston engines...

Sun 'n Fun's board of directors on Wednesday voted unanimously to shorten the 2008 Fly-In by one day to April 8 to 13. This move eliminates the half-day that typically caps the event on a Monday…

PlaneSmart, a Texas company that offers managed shared aircraft ownership, will upgrade its entire fleet to the Cirrus SR22 G3 model...

A user group is lobbying the Pentagon to preserve the accuracy of the GPS satellites for commercial applications...

British pilot Paul Bonhomme won the latest Red Bull Air Race in Switzerland last weekend. The next race is in London on July 29...

The national hot-air balloon championships are underway this week in Waco, Texas, go to the Balloon Federation Web site for details and daily podcasts.

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.

AVwebBiz: AVweb's Business Aviation Newsletter

HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's NO-COST weekly business newsletter, AVwebBiz? 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. Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/.

Need AFSS Information?
Click here.

Lockheed Martin
New Columns and Features back to top 

Across the Pond #6: Spain's Chinese Takeaway and Cheaper Fuel Stops

p class="copy">From Europe comes word of Chinese flight students in Spain, shorter routes to Las Vegas via Minnesota and much more.

Click here for the full story.

AVweb's AirVenture Survival Guide — Part One

AVweb columnist Rick Durden provides you the benefit of his years of Oshkosh experience with tips you won't find anywhere else. This first part of a two-part series covers how to prepare for your pilgrimage to aviation Mecca, what to bring, where to stay, when to go and what you need to know before you get there.

Click here for Part One.

AVweb's AirVenture Survival Guide — Part Two

In the second part of this two-part series, Rick Durden covers what you need to know once you arrive, how to get around at the big show, what to do, and what not to do.

Click here for Part Two.

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Up to $150,000 in factory incentives on your way to PiperJet ownership. Call Piper at (866) FLY-PIPER for a dealer near you, or go online.

» Visit Piper Aircraft in booths 72-75 & 79-82 at AirVenture
AVweb Audio News -- Are You Listening back to top 

AVweb Audio News

AVweb posts audio news on Mondays, plus a new in-depth interview each Friday. In last Friday's podcast, you'll hear you'll hear David Billings on the enduring allure of the Amelia Earhart mystery. And AVweb's podcast index includes interviews with BusinessJetSEATS Alfred Rapetti; EAA's Dick Knapinski; AOPA's Andrew Cebula; Cirrus Design's Alan Klapmeier; NBAA's Harry Houkes; Reason Foundation's Robert Poole; SATSair's Sheldon Early; Epic Aircraft's Rick Schrameck; AOPA's Randy Kenagy; Eclipse Aviation's Vern Raburn; Xwind's Brad Whitsitt; BoGo Light's Mark Bent; DayJet's Ed Iacobucci; Pogo Jet's Cameron Burr; Teal Group's Richard Aboulafia; Air Journey's Thierry Pouille; Epic Aircraft's Rick Schrameck; Cessna's Jack Pelton; Embraer's Ernest Edwards and LAMA's Dan Johnson. In Monday's podcast, Aerion vice chairman Brian Barents talks about his company's supersonic business jet design. Remember: In AVweb's podcasts, you'll hear things you won't find anywhere else.

It's Not What You Know, but Who You Know that Can Save You Money!
Avionics. Next to your airframe and engine(s), avionics are the most expensive items you will purchase for your aircraft. Don't spend more than you need to! Before you buy anywhere else, call Bennett Avionics at (800) 653-7295, or visit online. It's not rocket science, just good business!
Question Of The Week back to top 

Question of the Week: Marion Blakey's FAA Administrator Report Card

This Week's Question | Previous Week's Answers


Last week, an AVweb reader suggested that the difficulties many are experiencing with the newly-privatized AFSS system may be more than mere growing pains — they might be the early death cries of an antiquated system, now that DUATS, cell phone usage, and public internet access are on the rise.  We put the question to our readers:  Should the FAA eliminate FSS and require pilots to obtain flight briefings and file flight plans via the computer-based DUATS system?

Most readers were a bit cooler (and more conservative) on the notion of eliminating FSS altogether, with 54% of those who responded to last week's saying No, the service provided by FSS will improve and is still valuable.

You can view complete breakdown of the responses here.
(You may be asked to register and answer, if you haven't already participated in this poll.)


Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) this week called for the resignation of FAA Administrator Marion Blakey due to continued air traffic congestion in the New York metro area.

Taking a bigger picture view near the end of her five-year term,
what grade would you give Blakey for her management of the FAA?

Click here to answer.

(We'll put Sen. Schumer down for an F.)

Have an idea for a new "Question of the Week"? Send your suggestions to .

This address is only for suggested "QOTW" questions, and not for "QOTW" answers or comments.
Use this form to send "QOTW" comments to our AVmail Editor.

Attention, LSA Builders & ROTAX 912 Engine Operators
BASA, the industry's leader in aviation supplies, software, and publications, offers the ROTAX Engine Introduction DVD with tips and techniques for trouble-free operation of Light Sport Aircraft (LSA) with the ROTAX engine. This DVD also provides an introduction to the specific concepts important to maintaining the ROTAX 912. Go online for complete details and bonus features!

» Visit Aviation Supplies & Academics (ASA) in booths 2075-2078 at AirVenture
FBO Of The Week back to top 

FBO Of The Week: Elliott Aviation

Nominate an FBO | Rules | Tips | Questions | Winning FBOs

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Elliott Aviation at KMLI in Moline, Ill.

AVweb reader Jim Grady likes how they treat the "liitle guy."

"Our Sunday evening arrival was literally as the staff was out the door and off duty. They returned, parked us, took the fuel order and even took us to town in the van. All this was for a couple in a little taildragger, not a jet-A customer!"

Keep those nominations coming. For complete contest rules, click here.

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

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.

» Visit General Aviation Modifications, Inc. (GAMI) in booths 3005-3006 at AirVenture
Pictures Of The Week back to top 

Picture of the Week: AVweb's Flying Photography Showcase

Submit a Photo | Rules | Tips | Questions | Past Winners

Each week, we go through dozens (and sometimes hundreds) of reader-submitted photos and pick the very best to share with you on Thursday mornings.  The top photos are featured on AVweb's home page, and one photo that stands above the others is awarded an AVweb baseball cap as our "Picture of the Week."  Want to see your photo on AVweb.com?  Click here to submit it to our weekly contest.


We're feeling the love this week, with nearly 100 submitters taking our plea for pictures to heart and sending in their best amateur aviation shots to our "Picture of the Week" contest.  Before we dive in, we'd like to thanks for the outpouring of submissions — and remind you that "POTW" will be on hiatus next week while we're up to our ears in AirVenture.  Please continue to send in those photos, and we'll resume the "POTW" fun in two weeks.

medium | large

copyright © Edwin Cheng
Used with permission

Snowbirds over Parliament Hill

The Thunderbirds and Blue Angels have been well-represented in "POTW" during the 2007 summer air show season, but the Canadian Air Forces' Snowbirds have been keeping a low profile in our submission box.

Edwin Cheng of Nepean, Ontario fixes that little oversight with a dazzling display by the Snowbirds over Ottawa's Parliament Hill on Canada Day (July 1).


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Used with permission of Bob Ferguson

Breezy at Home

Bob Ferguson of Owasso, Oklahoma writes, "Thought you might need a Breezy picture since there is going to be a special Breezy Day at Oshkosh this year (on the 25th) with a banquet honoring Carl Ungar, one of the originators of the design. There will be special parking for Breezies. We hope to have a whole flock of them there."

We'll look for you, Bob — and if you get a few moments, be sure to stop by our booth (1005-1008) in the hangars to say hi.


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Used with permission of Jim Stubchaer

Mountain Wave Visualized

With summer fires on everyone's mind, we found ourselves captivated by this photo sent in by Jim Stubchaer of Santa Barbara, California.  Click through to the full-size version, and you'll see smoke from a brush fire revealing the wind pattern coming off the mountains.


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Used with permission of Ralph Lacomba

182 Damage

Eagle Aviation's hangars at Columbia Metro Airport in South Carolina sustained a 75mph microburst of wind during last week's storms.  Ralph Lacomba was kind enough to send us a couple of photos, if only to remind us that we fly at Mother Nature's whim.


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Used with permission of Brad Marzari

The 7 Series

Brad Marzari of the U.S. Armed Forces submitted this incredible photo from Boeing's 7/7/2007 celebration of the their 700-series airplanes (timed to coincide with the much-ballyhooed rollout of the 787 Dreamliner).

Brad couldn't track down the original photographer for us, but he did provide the run-down:

On Saturday night, Boeing had all of the 787 airline representatives at an event at the Museum of Flight. At 7:07 PM, an Omega Air Refueling Services 707 landed in front of the crowd (after taking off from Paine Field in Everrett).  At 7:17, an AirTran 717 landed.  This continued until 8:17, when an Air France 777-300ER landed.  In the end, the 707, 717, 727, 737, 747, 757, 767, and 777 were lined up nose-to-tail on the taxiway [left to right].  It is the first time Boeing has had every 7-series airplane in the same place (not counting the 787, which couldn't make the flight, of course).

Remember:  You'll find more reader-submitted photos in the "POTW" slideshow on AVweb's home page.  Go on — click through!

To enter next week's contest, click here.

A quick note for submitters:  If you've got several photos that you feel are "POTW" material, your best bet is to submit them one-a-week!  That gives your photos a greater chance of seeing print on AVweb, and it makes the selection process a little easier on us, too.  ;)

A Reminder About Copyrights: Please take a moment to consider the source of your image before submitting to our "Picture of the Week" contest. If you did not take the photo yourself, ask yourself if you are indeed authorized to release publication rights to AVweb. If you're uncertain, consult the POTW Rules or send us an e-mail.

Names Behind The News back to top 

Meet 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 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.

Aviate, navigate, communicate.