Volume 2, Issue 4 -- February 25, 2004

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The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded Business News Coverage At AVweb's Business NewsWire.

IS THE TSA COMING TO AN AIRPORT NEAR YOU?
Long preoccupied with managing its congressional mandate to federalize the passenger-screening workforce, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has spent two years wrestling internally and with industry groups in an attempt to figure out exactly what to do about non-scheduled aircraft operations. To date, there have been a number of recommendations and guidelines, as well as formal endorsement of AOPA's Airport Watch program. Additionally, the agency implemented a series of rules targeting chartered aircraft operations involving aircraft weighing 12,500 pounds or more. But the elephant sitting in the corner has always been what to do about security at non-commercial airports serving general and business aviation -- airports ranging from Teterboro to the grass strip outside of East Overshoe, Wyo., and everything in between. Much of the TSA's problems in getting its arms around general and business aviation security are internal -- it's still a young agency and one still reacting to the media and public emphasis on airline security. Now, however, it appears that may soon change. More...

HASSLE-FREE AUTO BUYING FOR THE AVIATION INDUSTRY
You read right! Crewcar and Consumer Guides have teamed up to offer hassle-free auto buying to the aviation industry! Next to the purchase of your home and airplane, this is the most important item you will purchase. Don't go blindly into a dealership; look to Crewcar. Crewcar is a car-buying service formed by aviation professionals. Teamed with Consumer Guide's Personal Auto Advisors (PAA), Crewcar provides shoppers with a free integrated phone and electronic concierge-level buying service that offers outstanding service and value no matter the geography. The service is provided gratis and meets all the Consumer Guide dealership network quality and service standards. For more information, visit Crewcar's web site at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/crewcar/biz.

DISSECTING GAMA'S ANNUAL INSPECTION
Is general aviation's glass half full? Is it half empty? Or is there just too much glass for the amount of liquid? Those questions -- kind of -- were the subject of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association's (GAMA) Annual Industry Review, a yearly look-see at sales numbers the industry racked up during the previous twelve months. An annual inspection, as it were. To no one's great surprise, and as AVweb reported earlier this month, the 2003 numbers show that many basic measurements of how well the general aviation industry is doing are trending downward, at least when compared with 2002. But, a closer, deeper examination of the industry's health reveals reasons for optimism. More...

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GULFSTREAM'S NEWEST NUMBER
It used to be easy to identify a Gulfstream on the local FBO ramp -- it was a GIII, GIV or GV. If it was short, or had tip tanks, it was a GII; props meant it was a GI. Nowadays, though, you can't tell at a glance and, perhaps most frustrating, the lines between the company's top-of-the-line bizjets have grown, well, fuzzy, with the new numbering system. At the lower end are the former Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI)/Galaxy Aerospace types that parent company General Dynamics acquired in 2001 -- the Astra SPX, now rebranded the Gulfstream 100, and the Galaxy, rebranded the Gulfstream 200. There's the forthcoming G150, derived from the G100/Astra SPX. And, of course, there's the G450, 500 and 550, which trace their lineage back to the GIV-SP, GV and GV-SP, respectively.

Now, as if us mere mortals needed more confusion in our Gulfstream-spotting, comes the just-announced G350. Gulfstream Aerospace on Monday confirmed what many had been anticipating for a few weeks -- formal announcement of the company's latest-model bizjet. Dubbed the G350, the newest Gulfstream is billed as a "large-cabin, mid-range" offering and will include the company's PlaneView avionics suite. Gulfstream expects FAA certification of the G350 by the fourth quarter of 2004, with the first customer delivery expected in the third quarter of 2005. The G350 isn't a growth version of the IAI/Galaxy fleet; instead, it is more of a short-range G450. Put another way, it's something like a new GIII-SP. More...

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CONGRESS TO LOOK AT DCA ACCESS
The federal government's ban of non-scheduled aircraft at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) has long been a major thorn in the side for general and business aviation. In fact, the only people remotely happy with the situation are the FBOs at other airports surrounding the nation's capital. Despite a number of well-meaning intentions and aborted efforts at the Transportation Security Administration and elsewhere, no one within the federal government has been willing to stick out their neck far enough for any real progress to be made. That may well still be the situation, but Congress is scheduled to finally and formally get into the act with a planned field hearing of the House Subcommittee on Aviation. More...

WINGX FROM HILTON SOFTWARE IS A PILOT'S DREAM COME TRUE!
WingX is a Microsoft Pocket PC application designed by pilots for pilots using the latest Microsoft .NET technology. WingX enables pilots to perform complex calculations while down at the airport and away from their home PCs. Graphical weight and balance; route information with wind calculations; an E6B page; sunrise and sunset times; medical and pilot expiration date tracking; and FARs 1, 43, 61, 91, 119, 141, and 830; as well as the Pilot/Controller Glossary -- at your fingertips! This is amazing. See for yourself at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/hiltonsoftware/biz.

TSA ANNOUNCES MEETING ON REPAIR STATION SECURITY
Believe it or not, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is finally getting around to listening to the people it's trying to regulate. For most of the agency's life, the first many people knew about a new aviation security regulation was when its final version was published and made effective. But, if you've ever reviewed a proposed Airworthiness Directive or written the FAA about a pending rule change, you know that's not the way federal regulations are supposed to be developed. Instead, the TSA yesterday published a notice that it was seeking public comment, and would hold a public meeting on security at foreign and domestic aircraft repair stations. More...

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CESSNA ROLLS OUT FIRST PRODUCTION CJ3…
Cessna’s first Citation CJ3 manufactured on the production line rolled out the door Feb. 13 at its Wichita, Kan., production facility. The event marked another milestone in the company's certification effort. As of early February, certification flight-testing for the CJ3 has reached over 567.8 hours in 345 flights. Cessna recently finished induced-icing development and certification flights, and has begun flights in natural icing. Simultaneously, the CJ3 airframe undergoing static testing has successfully completed over 200 certified test conditions. More...

...AND EXPECTS CITATION XLS PAPERWORK SOON
Cessna also expects to receive FAA certification of its new XLS variant as early as this week. The XLS, Cessna's follow-on to the Citation Excel, features a number of improvements when compared with its predecessor. For example, Cessna said when it announced the XLS that it expected the new model to have a 200-pound gross weight increase over the Excel. Maximum IFR range with two pilots and five passengers was projected to increase 225 nm, to 1,945 nm. Up front, the XLS will fly with Honeywell's all-new Primus 1000 Control Display System (CDS) avionics system. The Primus 1000 features three 8" x 10" liquid crystal displays divided into two primary flight displays (PFDs) and one multi-function display (MFD). More...

CALCULATE OPERATING COSTS WITH THE INTERACTIVE AIRCRAFT BUDGET ANALYZER
AirPower Software offers multiple software editions that create instant budgets by manipulating your preloaded information to address your particular usage amounts and/or costs. Changes can be made to an individual preloaded figure or across the entire layout as needed. In addition to the preloaded databases of aircraft, the Budget Analyzer also lets you create your own individualized budget via the "My Aircraft" selection. This allows you to input operating numbers for any type of aircraft. There are six editions: Lite (no aircraft databases included); Piston; Turbo Prop; Helicopter; Jet; and Full (which includes all four aircraft databases). Instant downloads are available on all software products. For complete information, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/airpower/biz.

CORPORATE AVIATION "SAFEST" IN 2003, SAYS NBAA
There were no fatal accidents involving corporate aviation operators in 2003, according to National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) President and CEO Shelley A. Longmuir. This statistic, attributed to bizav number-cruncher Robert A Breiling, means that corporate aviation is one of the safest travel modes available, according to the association. Of course, it don't get much better than that. More...

ECLIPSE SELECTS CROSSBOW AHRS
San Jose, Calif.-based Crossbow Technology Inc. announced earlier this month that its AHRS500GA product had been selected by Eclipse Aviation for attitude and heading reference systems (AHRS) aboard the Eclipse 500 light jet. Crossbow's AHRS500GA was certified by the FAA in 2003 and the company has a supplemental type certificate (STC) allowing its installation in more than 600 aircraft. More...

HONEYWELL, ROLLS-ROYCE INK TURBINE SERVICE DEAL
Honeywell and Rolls-Royce reached a worldwide licensing service agreement that calls for Honeywell to perform repair services on the first- and second-stage turbine vanes on certain Rolls-Royce turbine engines. More...

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Business AVflash is a twice-monthly summary of the latest business aviation news, articles, products, features and events featured on AVweb, the Internet's Aviation Magazine and News Service. http://www.avweb.com

Have a comment or question? Send it to mailto:newsteam@avweb.com.

Today's issue written by Joseph E. (Jeb) Burnside:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#jburnside
AVweb's editorial team: http://avweb.com/contact/authors.html.

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