AVwebBiz - Volume 8, Number 50

December 29, 2010

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
 
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AVflash! Safety Equipment in the Spotlight back to top 
 

Some TCAS Units Miss Traffic, FAA Says

The traffic alert and collision avoidance systems used in thousands of aircraft need to be upgraded, the FAA said this week, to prevent them from missing targets in high-density areas. During a flight test, a TCAS unit built by Aviation Communications & Surveillance Systems (ACSS) dropped several aircraft tracks because of interference limiting, the FAA said. The dropped tracks could "compromise separation of air traffic and lead to subsequent mid-air collisions," according to the proposed airworthiness directive. The fix will cost about $3,000 per airplane, the FAA said. The units are installed on about 7,000 aircraft operated by U.S. airlines and more than 1,800 business aircraft, an FAA spokeswoman told The Wall Street Journal.

The FAA said that during a flight test, the TCAS unit interrogated aircraft in a high-density airport area and some of the targets disappeared from the cockpit display or were not recognized. One occurrence of dropped tracks occurred for 30 to 40 seconds of a 90-minute flight segment. Operators have 48 months after the effective date of the AD to install the software upgrade. A spokeswoman for L-3 Communications, the parent company of ACSS, told the Journal that the company informed the FAA of the problem in the summer of 2009, and has been working on a fix. Service bulletins already have been issued to deal with it, she said.

 
Lightspeed Aviation || Change Your Mind
Lightpseed Aviation Tops ProPilot's Annual
Headset Preference Survey

For the 10th year of their independently conducted survey, readers were asked to rate aviation headset performance based on six categories — clarity, comfort, technical advancement, durability, product support, and value for price. Coming in second was Bose, followed by Telex, Sennheiser, and David Clark. The entire survey appears in ProPilot's December 2010 issue. For more information about Lightspeed headsets, go to LightspeedAviation.com.
 
Keeping Up with the Joneses: Airliner Edition back to top 
 

Boeing Pressured For Re-Engined 737

Boeing is coming under increasing pressure to follow Airbus's lead and come up with a fuel-efficient version of its single-aisle airliner. A couple of weeks ago, Airbus announced it would offer a re-engined A320 equipped with either Pratt and Whitney's geared turbofan or GE's next-generation engines. Boeing has been hinting it will go for all-out replacement of the 737 with the new aircraft borrowing heavily from technology developed for the 787 Dreamliner, which has suffered numerous developmental setbacks. The earliest a new 737 could be ready is about 10 years from now and Boeing customers are worried that they'll lose ground to competitors flying the new A320s, which will be 15 percent more efficient and ready in 2016. Bombardier is also launching the state-of-the-art CSeries airliners in the next few years and claiming major efficiency advantages in the design. Boeing's biggest 737 customer isn't pulling any punches about its concerns.

Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly told the company's annual meeting that fuel costs could challenge its low-fare model and he dropped a not-so-veiled threat. "We've already expressed that desire to Boeing to have more (fuel-efficient options)," Kelly is quoted by the Dallas Business Journal as saying. "If we're going to try to increase the fleet from this point forward, we'd like to do that ...." Southwest has 550 737s and recently agreed to buy larger 737-8s. Boeing insists it hasn't made up its mind on how to approach the single-aisle market and a major complication in re-engining is that the 737 sits so close to the ground that the larger-diameter inlets of the new engines would require taller landing gear.

 
PiperJet Altaire || (866) FLY-PIPER
PiperJet Altaire — Efficiency, Meet Performance
PiperJet Altaire. It has always been in a class of one: the only single-engine business jet with a combined speed, range and payload that outperforms the twin-engine jets in its class. Best of all, the PiperJet Altaire still costs significantly less to operate per hour than comparable current-production VLJ aircraft.

Click here to find out more about the PiperJet Altaire.
 
MASS Fractional Ownership a Reality back to top 
 

Fractional Offers Multiple Aircraft Access

AirShares Elite, a fractional ownership company that maintains a fleet of Cirrus SR22 aircraft in 19 U.S. cities, is offering a new wrinkle in the frax market for its big customers. Owners can now book multiple aircraft simultaneously in different cities. "This can be particularly advantageous for national businesses, as a customer with offices in New York, Los Angeles, and Atlanta could fly an airplane in all three locations at the same time, yet they only have to pay for a fraction of a single plane," AirShares founder David Lee said in a news release.

The Multiple Aircraft in Simultaneous Service (MASS) option is available to all AirShares customers and Lee says he believes his company is the first to offer that sort of access to fractional customers. He said it gives customers access to a fleet of aircraft in multiple locations with cost benefits of fractional ownership.

 
Diamond Aircraft
Find Out Why Leading Flight Training Schools Fly Diamond!
Diamond offers the only complete modern fleet of technically-advanced training aircraft, along with model-specific flight training devices and a safety record that is second to none. Call now to find out why leading flight training schools around the globe fly Diamond Aircraft.
 
Mississippi Governor's Jetsetting Draws Fire back to top 
 

Bill Would Strip Governor Of Jet

Mississippi Democrats have introduced a bill in the state legislature to strip Gov. Haley Barbour of his use of the state's Cessna Citation amid growing scrutiny of the flamboyant potential presidential candidate's use of the aircraft. Critics allege many of the trips Barbour takes with the jet have more to do with his presidential ambitions or personal interests. Although Barbour does reimburse the state for some use of the plane, Democrats claim to have uncovered flights paid for by the state that they say are thinly veiled personal or political junkets.

In one case, the plane was dispatched to Las Vegas to pick up Barbour after he hosted a political fundraiser in which donors of $5,000 to his political action committee got a spin around the track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in a stock car and drinks with gambling mogul Steve Wynn. Barbour spokesman Dan Turner said the real purpose of the stop in Las Vegas was to get fuel. Turner has repeatedly defended Barbour's use of the plane, saying it's part of the governor's vigorous campaign to promote the state. "Gov. Barbour is an effective marketing tool in a state that really needs it," [Turner] said in an email to Politico.com. "In other states, people don't necessarily appreciate the idea of a governor being so outgoing about promoting the state, whether it's in Congress or in boardrooms."

 
TAS600 from Avidyne || Dual-Antenna Traffic || Now Just $8,490
See What You've Been Missing!
Active-Surveillance Traffic Now Available Starting at $8,490

Avidyne announces new full-featured TAS605 and TAS615 models, along with the lowest price available for dual-antenna, active traffic with our TAS600. All TAS600 Series systems provide timely audible and visual alerts with the precise location of conflicting traffic. Patented Top & Bottom directional antennas detect other aircraft sooner and more accurately. Avidyne's TAS600 Series are the smallest, lightest, best performing, and most affordable active TAS systems available. Click here to learn more about the TAS600 Traffic Systems.
 
LSAs Gone Pro back to top 
 

LSA To Fight Fires In Ecuador

Light sport airplanes are generally considered to be for fun flying, but a fire department in Ecuador this week took delivery of a Flight Design LSA to use as its aerial support unit. Hugh Cobo, leader of the Air Volunteer Fire Department in Bomberos de Cuenca, said he chose the CTLS as the department's first airplane because it met the required needs for safety and performance while keeping costs low for acquisition and operation. "The aircraft will certainly improve the fire department's response capability, giving more and better information about different emergencies," Cobo said. "As the Cuenca's Fire Department supports other fire departments in the region and nationwide, the CTLS will be a helpful tool we can depend upon."

The department's pilots are ready to fly missions after only 10 hours of training in the CTLS, Cobo said. The fire department is based at the Mariscal La Mar airport in the Andes, at 8,300 feet above sea level, but Cobo said the CT is capable of flying in the mountainous region with a two-person crew. He expects the CT will log about 25 hours per month on average, with more time spent aloft during wildfire season. "Using the CTLS in this way, our fire department has an effective tool to help in search functions, recognition and support of ground operations," he said.

 
Rediscover Jet City!
Make King County International Airport/Boeing Field your flight destination! Conveniently located just 5 miles from downtown Seattle, KBFI is positioned in the center of the growing economy of the Puget Sound region, serving as a hub for business travel, private jets, and general aviation travel. Partner with aviation experts when you fly to Seattle. Make your destination King County International Airport/Boeing Field! For more information, visit online.
 
Opinion & Commentary back to top 
 

AVweb Insider Blog: What Now, FlightPrep?

FlightPrep isn't just taking on RunwayFinder in its patent enforcement lawsuit. It's taking on the whole aviation community — and that could be a big fight. On the AVweb Insider blog, Russ Niles explains why it may be time for FlightPrep to rethink its patent enforcement strategy.

Read more and join the conversation.

AVweb Insider Blog: Unexpected Pleasures — Cub Landings

What's better — pottering around the pattern yourself in a J-3 Cub, or watching your student nail his landings on a turn runway? On the AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli suggests it's a toss-up.

Read more and join the conversation.

 
WingX Pro 7 || Moving Map for the iPad || Hilton Software
WingX Pro7 Moving Map for iPad!
The $99 Moving MapWingX Pro7 Moving Map for iPad is now available for your iPad. See your location on the approach chart; Approach Charts and Airport Diagrams are now geo-referenced*, and all are stored right on the iPad! WingX Pro7's interactive moving map displays Class B, C, and D airspaces; animated weather images; A/FD; AOPA Directory with Yelp integration; route planning, FARs, METARS, TAFS, winds, and temperatures aloft; TFRs' text and graphics; an E6B; and more. WingX is also available for Windows Mobile, Blackberry, and Android. Click here for more information.
 
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 
 

Video: IFR Magazine Shows You How to Use a GPS for NDB-Only Approaches

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

You can't legally fly an NDB approach in the clouds using a GPS unless it says "or GPS" in the title. But there's nothing that says you can't practice VFR what it's like to fly an approach with a bearing pointer and no moving maps. Come along with IFR magazine editor-in-chief Jeff Van West and see how to make your glass cockpit (or portable GPS) go retro to fly an old-school NDB approach just for the fun and proficiency of it.

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Try disabling ad blockers and refreshing this page.
If that doesn't work, click here to download the video directly.

Video: Eclipse Jet Flight Demo

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

As Eclipse Aerospace tries to put the pieces together following the bankruptcy of the original company in 2008, it's busily modifying the 259 existing airframes. AVweb recently flew one of the upgraded models with owner David Green. The airplane is fast, comfortable, and a blast to fly.

Don't see a video screen?
Try disabling ad blockers and refreshing this page.
If that doesn't work, click here to download the video directly.

 
Bonus Depreciation Stories and Resources on AVweb.com
Fantastic Pricing and Tax Incentives make 2010 an ideal time to buy or upgrade an aircraft. We've compiled special offers on new or used planes, avionics, engines and more on the resource page. The pricing, rebates or incentives are available to everyone. Consult your tax advisor regarding the potential bonus depreciation benefits, and check our resources page for stories, podcasts, and videos related to bonus depreciation.
 
15 Years, 15 Grand Giveaways back to top 
 

15 Grand Giveaways to Celebrate 15 Years of AVweb: The Prize Winners

2010 is disappearing in the rearview mirror, and over the course of AVweb's 15th year of publishing, we gave away 15 prizes valued at least $1,000 each to our readers in celebration. It was our way to say "thank you" for your support, and we look forward to the next 15 years of covering aviation for you.

Here's the complete list of prize winners:

  1. Ron Goin of Idaho Falls, ID won a Bose Aviation Headset X.
  2. Rod Anson of Camperdown, VC (Australia) won a grab bag of publications from our parent company, Belvoir Media Group.
  3. Colleen Keller of San Diego, CA won a Garmin Aera 510 GPS.
  4. Jack Feiden of Wichita, KS won a WxWorx XM WX Satellite Weather receiver.
  5. David Schieman of Lawrenceville, GA won a Scheyden flight gear package, including Dual RX eyewear.
  6. William R. Smith of Madison, CT won a Get-It-All Training Kit from King Schools.
  7. Richard Kemp of Canton, GA won an AV8OR handheld GPS from Bendix/King by Honeywell.
  8. Lukasz Shaded of Lawrenceville, GA won a Zaon PCAS XRX.
  9. Roger Newcomb of Austin, TX won a Spidertracks Aviator.
  10. David Durnan of Somerville, MA won a Bose Aviation Headset X.
  11. Ronald C. Hanna of Independence, OR won a PMA6000B audio panel from PS Engineering.
  12. Richard Merrill of New Town, CT won a Lightspeed Zulu headset.
  13. Lt. Col. Chris Parkhurst of Virginia Beach, VA won a 100,000 Bravo Rewards Points from Air BP.
  14. Robert Yocum of Blain, PA won an iFly 700 GPS from Adventure Pilot.
  15. Steve Richard of Pleasanton, CA won a Garmin Aera 510 GPS.

 
'Flying High Performance Singles and Twins' by 
John C. Eckalbar || Available at AVwebBooks.com
Flying High Performance Singles & Twins
For serious pilots who now find themselves in command of elaborately equipped high-performance airplanes and engines. This book teaches those systems in detail and pursues a deeper understanding of engines, turbo chargers, intercoolers, pressurization, flight directors, radar, icing systems, partial panel flight, aerodynamics and operarations at higher speeds and altitudes, and more.

Book | $46.95
eBook | $42.25

Call (800) 780-4115 or click here for more information.
 
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.

 
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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

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