AVwebBiz - Volume 8, Number 6

February 10, 2010

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
 
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Top News: Photos of Dulles Jet Center Snow Damage back to top 
 
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Global Expresses, G550 In Collapsed Hangar

Click for more photos

The bill to general aviation from last weekend's massive snowstorm on the east coast could hit tens of millions of dollars and most of that could come from the partial collapse of one building at Dulles International Airport. As we reported Saturday, part of the roof of Dulles Jet Center came down under the weight of the snow. At the time, all that was known was that there were aircraft inside but photos provided to AVweb by a reader show a scene that is enough to make any insurance executive shiver. Two Bombardier Global Express jets and a Gulfstream 550 appear to be in takeoff attitude inside the hangar, their tails pushed to the floor under the weight of the crushed structure of the building. It's not immediately known whether they can be repaired and it might be tricky getting them out from under the twisted steel.

The storm also took out Dulles Aviation's hangar at Manassas Regional Airport. Newspaper reports say there were no aircraft or people inside the hangar when it came down. The ordeal may not be over, however. A winter storm warning was issued Monday and up to 14 more inches of snow could fall by Wednesday.

Click for photos.

 
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Longest Boeing Ever Takes Flight back to top 
 

Boeing 747-8 First Flight

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Boeing's latest airliner took off for the first time Monday at 12:39 p.m. The Boeing 747-8 was scheduled for a four-hour flight around the Pacific Northwest after a smooth liftoff from Paine Field. It landed at 4:18 p.m. after an uneventful flight to check basic handling and engine performance. The aircraft is the longest ever built by Boeing and the first test article is a cargo version. The passenger version will follow in about a year and will carry up to 467 people in three classes. The cockpit is virtually identical to that of the 787 Dreamliner and passenger amenities will be similar.

Although the 787 has been grabbing the limelight, the 747-8 project is considered an important part of the company's future business plan. Both aircraft have similar ranges and Boeing sees the 747-8 serving major world hubs while the 787 offers airlines the range flexibility to offer non-stop long-haul flights between smaller cities. The new 747 is powered by GEnx-2B67 engines that put out 65,000 pounds of thrust. So far, Boeing has 108 orders, 76 in the cargo version, with Cargolux as the launch customer. Lufthansa is the passenger version's launch customer with 20 firm orders. The second biggest customer (six airplanes) is Boeing Business Jets.

Related Content:
Boeing's video and air-to-air photos of the flight

 
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Have an Opinion on Pilot Certificates? Tell the FAA back to top 
 

FAA Calls For Comment On Pilot Certification Standards

As part of the FAA's effort to improve airline safety following last year's Colgan Air accident in Buffalo, N.Y., the agency on Monday issued an "advance notice of proposed rulemaking" seeking input about what kind of training and certification should be required for pilots flying in Part 121 airline jobs. The FAA seeks comments on several points, such as, should all airline first officers be ATP rated, should academic credit count toward ratings, and should commercial pilots be required to meet a higher flight-hour minimum or acquire an added endorsement to fly in a Part 121 crew. "We must build on the current pilot certification system and make it even stronger," said Ray LaHood, secretary of transportation. "Our nation's airlines should have the best-trained and best-prepared pilots in the cockpit." FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt said he is looking for new ways to measure pilot competence other than merely counting flight hours. "Experience is not measured by flight time alone," said Babbitt. "Pilots need to have quality training and experience appropriate to the mission to be ready to handle any situation they encounter."

The public has 60 days to send comments to the FAA. Those comments will be incorporated into an NPRM which will also be open to public comment. Click here for the full text of the advance NPRM, including details about how to submit comments. Click here for the FAA's news release about the proposal. The FAA said it will issue proposals in the spring to address both pilot training and pilot fatigue.

 
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Recovery to Bring New Challenges, Says ERAU back to top 
 

Embry-Riddle: Industry To Rebound In 2010, But ...

Manufacturing in aerospace "may help lead the U.S. economy out of recession" in 2010, according to a study by Embry-Riddle's Center for Aviation and Aerospace Leadership. While the Center's study (the Aerospace Economic Report and Outlook for 2010) suggests that the rate of recovery could be relatively quick, as compared to other sectors of the economy, it also shows what Embry-Riddle calls an "ominous trend." The study cites a strong shift toward "the importation of aerospace components and parts." While the U.S. continues to lead in the exportation of aircraft, "a growing percentage of the components that go into the assembled aircraft are being produced overseas," says the study. That may lead to other economic and national security concerns, according to the school. Those concerns, and the full results of the study, will be discussed at Embry-Riddle's first Aviation and Aerospace Manufacturing Summit, to be held Feb. 22-24, in Orlando, Fla.

In discussing the study, the school emphasized the role aerospace manufacturing plays in the U.S. economy and national defense. While interconnections between national manufacturers and those abroad may enhance international industrial relations, Embry-Riddle notes the dependence on foreign entities has also created natively based economic and security concerns. "Both civilian and military aerospace products may be at risk if this trend continues," said the study's co-author, retired Air Force Brigadier General Robert Mansfield. Click here to learn more about Embry-Riddle's upcoming aerospace manufacturing summit and to learn how you can obtain copies of the report.

 
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Viva La Light Jet: Cessna Mustangs Keep Coming back to top 
 

Cessna Rolls Out 300th Citation Mustang

Cessna Thursday announced that it has completed its 300th Citation Mustang, to be "delivered later this year to a retail customer in Australia." The mark follows delivery of the first Mustang (April, 2007) by a span of less than three years. Announced first at the 2002 National Business Aviation Association convention, Cessna had the first Mustang flying by April of 2005. Thought to see competition from the Eclipse 500, an early inspiration to the entire very light jet market, the Citation Mustang went on to become the first fully certified "entry-level business jet" and currently sells for just over $3 million loaded with Garmin avionics and powered by Pratt & Whitney Canada engines.

"The aircraft continues to set the mark for entry level business jet operations around the world, and its demand has remained fairly resilient during the past year," according to Cessna's top man, Jack Pelton. Pelton says the jet has found its niche in the air taxi, charter, training and owner-operator segments. AVweb took its first video tour of the Mustang back in July of 2005. In May of 2009, we posted a Mustang video flight demonstration. Flying with a payload of 1,200 pounds over and above crew, the jet has a range of about 700 nautical miles. It can cruise at speeds up to 340 KTAS and is certified to 41,000 feet. Its two 1,460-lb thrust P&W Canada engines can get it off the ground in 3,110 feet and it can stop in 2,380, according to Cessna. The Cessna Mustang is single-pilot certified.

 
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Beep, Beep — It's a Message for You, Captain back to top 
 

Delta Aims To Prevent Crew Overflights

Dispatchers at Delta Air Lines will soon be able to contact flight crews with special sound alerts, rather than text messages only, to avoid an incident like the one last October when two distracted pilots overflew their destination by more than an hour, the airline has told the NTSB. In a document filed with the safety board, the airline said it is changing its software so dispatchers will be able to send aural alerts to Airbus A320 and A319 cockpits, in addition to text messages. The two pilots, who at the time were operating as a Northwest Airlines flight, told investigators they were at a loss to explain how they flew so far off course without noticing. The Air Line Pilots Association told the NTSB it would also be a good idea to consider installing "crew alertness monitors" on A320s that automatically sound an alert and trigger red flashing lights if the crew goes quiet for too long. The National Air Traffic Controllers Association agreed in its statement to the NTSB that an aural alert system would be a good idea.

NATCA also suggested that controllers need to have current phone numbers for air carrier dispatch desks as well as refresher training on NORDO procedures. Click here for the NTSB collection of documents relevant to this ongoing investigation. The FAA has revoked the certificates of both pilots.

 
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New on AVweb back to top 
 

AVweb Insider Blog: Why Do People Make Bad Security Lines Worse?

Because they're human, that's why, and they don't realize their own bumbling makes things worse for everyone. But Paul Bertorelli blogs that he tries not to be one of them in the latest installment of the AVweb Insider.

Read more and add your comments.

Exclusive Video: AVweb's G100UL Flight Test

Original, Exclusive Videos from AVweb | Reader-Submitted & Viral Videos

For nearly three decades, general aviation has been struggling to find an unleaded replacement for 100LL avgas. General Aviation Modifications Inc. (GAMI) in Ada, Oklahoma says they've found it. AVweb's Paul Bertorelli recently took a test flight to see how the new fuel works.

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Exclusive Video: How the Amateur Challenger Explosion Video Went Public

Original, Exclusive Videos from AVweb | Reader-Submitted & Viral Videos

Twenty-four years after the event, what may be the only amateur video shot of the Space Shuttle Challenger explosion has gone public. A Presidential commission resolved the accident took place on a day that was 15° colder than any previous launch ... and that the 36° launch-time temperature was a contributing factor.

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Who's Where back to top 
 

Lancair Reorganizes Sales

Lancair has added Doug Walker to its sales staff. He'll cover the eastern U.S. and Canada. Neal Longwill has moved from Redmond to Texas to handle the south/central area, and Chelsea Welch remains in Redmond to take care of the western U.S. and Canada.


Who's Where? You Tell Us

Get a promotion or a new job? Your colleagues want to know about it, and AVwebBiz can get the word out. Drop us a line about the staff appointment, with a nice recent photo, and we'll do our best to include it in our new section, "Who's Where." The items will be permanently archived on AVweb for future reference, too.

 
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You! back to top 
 

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 200,000 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.

 
Help Us Celebrate AVweb's 15th Anniversary back to top 
 

15 Years and Now 15 Grand Giveaways ... Now's Your Chance to Win 100,000 Air BP Bravo Reward Points

CLICK HERE to Register for All 15 Drawings

Now's your chance to win 100,000 Air BP Bravo Rewards Points as we celebrate our 15th Anniversary! All you have to do is click here to enter your name and e-mail address. (You only have to enter once, and you'll be entered in our prize drawings for the entire year. If you've already entered for the previous Bose Headset drawing, you're all set — no need to register again.)

And no, we're not going to rent or sell your name, ever. Tell your friends, and invite them to sign up for AVweb so they can qualify for our 15 Grand Giveaways prize drawings, too. (We won't spam them, either — but we hope they will sign up for our newsletters.)

Deadline for entries is 11:59pm Zulu time February 19, 2010.

Click here to read the contest rules and enter.


Congratulations to Ron Goin of Idaho Falls, ID, who won the Bose Aviation Headset X! (click here to get your own from Bose Corporation)

 
Names Behind the News back to top 
 

Meet the AVwebBiz Team

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

The AVwebBiz team is:

Publisher
Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Editor-in-Chief
Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

Webmaster
Scott Simmons

Contributors
Jeff van West

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 AVwebBiz. For complete instructions on making the switch, click here.

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