AVwebBiz - Volume 11, Number 26

July 3, 2013

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
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Spotlight on Separation I back to top 
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NTSB Wants New ATC Procedures, To Avert Midairs

After investigating five incidents in which commercial jetliners came close to other aircraft while arriving or departing at major U.S. airports, the NTSB said on Monday the FAA should modify the rules for air traffic controllers to ensure the safe separation of airplanes during go-around maneuvers. Conflicts at low altitude result in having to execute evasive maneuvers at low altitude and high closing speeds with little time to avoid a collision. The review of the five incidents shows that existing FAA separation standards and operating procedures are inadequate, the safety board said.

In all five incidents, the NTSB said, a pilot on approach to the airport aborted the landing attempt and initiated a go-around maneuver, which put the go-around airplane on a flightpath that intersected with the flightpath of another airplane either departing or arriving on another runway at the same airport. The five incidents reviewed by the NTSB occurred in Las Vegas, New York, and Charlotte. The NTSB's complete discussion of its investigation is posted online (PDF).

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Download Sennheiser's new magazine app for the iPad at no cost and dive right into a new and interactive way to experience the world of sound. In the aviation issue, the high art of aerobatics features alongside the high art of plane building from scrap heaps. Watch Vince Neil from Mötley Crüe take his first flying lessons and learn how veteran pilots pass the torch in schools. Also listen to our new "Live Your Dream" theme song by Joe.e.

In May, BlueStage is all about the sonic experience on wings. Download, swipe, and enjoy! Learn more.
Coming to an Airport Near You back to top 

Cessna Starts TTx Deliveries

The first new copies of the Cessna TTx, which the company calls "the world's fastest commercially produced and certified fixed-gear single engine aircraft," have been delivered, Cessna said on Monday. The all-composite, turbocharged four-seat aircraft evolved from the Corvalis (previously Columbia) line. The cockpit features sidestick controls and debuts the Garmin G2000 avionics suite, with dual 14.1 high-definition displays and touchscreen controls. Top speed is 235 knots, powered by a 310-hp Continental TSIO-550-C engine, and range is 1,250 nm. Cessna said pilots who transition into the airplane will be provided additional training, "due to the additional horsepower and capabilities of the aircraft."

The airplane has an operating ceiling of 25,000 feet and an optional flight into known icing (FIKI) system. AVweb took the airplane for a spin last year; click here for the video report. Starting price for the airplane is $733,950.

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The award-winning hit TV series The Aviators is back for an all-new third season showcasing everything from the F-22 and DC-3 to LSA and balloons. We take you dogfighting in the Nevada desert, flying with the USAF Thunderbirds, and look on as Mötley Crue frontman Vince Neil learns to fly. Join our 10 million weekly US viewers and countless more worldwide.

Watch The Aviators on PBS, iTunes, Amazon, and Hulu.
Bringing the CSeries to Market back to top 

Bombardier Delays CSeries First Flight

Bombardier says it needs to tweak the software of its CSeries test aircraft and has delayed the maiden flight of the aircraft until sometime in late July. The company announced the decision last week even though executives had put a hard deadline of the end of June on the first flight. Bombardier spokesman Marc Duchesne told the Toronto Star the unspecified issues will be addressed and this will be the last delay in the test program. "We're in good shape. We just need a few more weeks," Duchesne said. "It's nothing over the life of a 20-year program. We're almost there."

The aircraft was supposed to fly by the end of 2012 and Bombardier pushed that to the end of June. It blamed supplier problems on that delay. Interest in the CSeries, which is a major initiative for Bombardier, has been tepid so far and competition in the 100-160-seat category is ramping up. Embraer unveiled its reworked E series airliners at the Paris Air Show and announced 365 orders. Bombardier has 388 orders for CSeries aircraft, 188 of them firm. Analysts speculate orders will pick up once test flights prove Bombardier's claims that the aircraft will burn 20 percent less fuel and cost about 15 percent less to operate than comparable airframes.

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Spotlight on Separation II back to top 

Airbus Evasive Maneuver Frightens Passengers

The maneuver by an Airbus 319 crew over Michigan on Monday, briefly diving the jet in response to a TCAS warning, may seem routine to aviators, but it's been getting a lot of coverage in the mainstream press, citing terrified passengers and jostled flight attendants. "Screaming passengers feared the plane was going to crash," says The Associated Press story. No passengers were injured, but luggage bins fell open, drinks spilled, and a couple of flight attendants hit their heads. The FAA said at their closest point, the Airbus was within 400 feet vertically and 1.6 miles horizontally from a skydiving jump plane operating VFR over southern Michigan.

The Airbus had launched from Detroit, bound for Dallas-Fort Worth. "Air traffic controllers notified the Spirit pilot that a skydiving jump plane was climbing just south of the jetliner's position," FAA spokeswoman Elizabeth Cory said in an email to the AP. "The Spirit pilot confirmed that he could see the smaller aircraft on his [TCAS]. ... A minute later, the Spirit jet received an automated TCAS warning that required him to begin an immediate 1,600-foot descent to 12,800 feet from a previous altitude of 14,400 feet." The crew gave no warning of the unexpected dive, passenger Janet Dunnabeck told the AP. "It was horrifying," she said. "Every person on that plane was screaming. We thought we were going down."

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Employment back to top 

Layoffs At Sikorsky

Helicopter manufacturer Sikorsky sent layoff notices to 200 workers last week, according to local news sources. The helicopter manufacturer, based in Stratford, Conn., told the Hartford Business Journal that government spending is being cut in the U.S. and internationally, and many customers are delaying purchase decisions as economic uncertainty persists. "Given all this, we must do all we can to protect our competitiveness while continuing to invest in our future," said Sikorsky spokesman Paul Jackson. Sikorsky employs about 16,000 people around the world, including about 8,600 in Connecticut, according to the HBJ.

Defense consultant Loren Thompson told the Hartford Courant the downsizing is likely to continue, since Sikorsky will see a drop in government contracts due to the winding down of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. However, things could change for the company if they win the contract for an armed aerial scout helicopter, which is still under consideration. "Sikorsky looks like the front-runner to win the advanced aerial scout," said Thomspon. "If the program unfolds quickly they may be calling people back to the factory."

New DOT Secretary Steps In back to top 

Foxx Sworn In As Secretary Of Transportation

After unanimous Senate confirmation, Anthony Foxx was sworn in as the new Secretary of Transportation Tuesday. Foxx repeated the oath to Judge Nathaniel Jones in a private ceremony attended by his family. Foxx wasted little time setting the agenda for his coming term. "Safety will remain our top priority at DOT," he said in a statement. "At the same time, I will work to improve the efficiency and performance of our current transportation system while building the infrastructure we need for future generations."

Foxx is the former mayor of Charlotte, has little documented experience in aviation, and is believed to have been tapped for the job because of his background in rail and urban transit. Foxx replaces Ray LaHood, one of a few Republicans in Obama's cabinet.

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 255,000 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.

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 world's premier independent aviation news resource.

The AVwebBiz team is:

Tom Bliss

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Russ Niles

Scott Simmons

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Kevin Lane-Cummings

Ad Coordinator
Karen Lund

Avionics Editor
Larry Anglisano

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