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Volume 4, Number 17
August 30, 2006
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Colorado-based Adam Aircraft yesterday told AVweb that it expects full certification of its A500 piston-powered centerline-thrust twin in the "next few days." According to a company spokesperson, "all the paperwork is complete" and filed with the FAA -- except for known icing approval -- and the company is waiting to hear back from the FAA. If Adam's understanding of its certification application is accurate, obtaining the FAA's final approval for the A500 will prove to be a major boon to the company and will help it get additional cash flow to bring the A700 jet to market. As AVweb reported last week, the company recently received a $93 million cash influx from venture capitalist DCM. Taken together, the two developments could firmly plant Adam in the market for piston twins and for VLJs. More...

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The FAA people involved with aircraft certification will be busy during the next few weeks. In addition to the Adam Aircraft A500 piston twin, Eclipse Aviation's Eclipse 500 VLJ, which received provision type certification during last month's EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, is likely to get its full certification, also. Back in July, Eclipse CEO and President Vern Raburn told the throngs his company expected to receive full certification -- except for known icing and some of the avionics' software -- by the end of August. But well-placed sources tell AVweb that it's likely Eclipse will miss that self-imposed deadline. Instead of coming in under that wire in the next 24 or so hours, Eclipse now believes full FAA certification -- again with the above-mentioned caveats -- will be achieved sometime in September. Regardless of whether the company makes it over the certification finish line in September, or even by close of business tomorrow, you can bet your next fuel bill that the Eclipse 500 will be certified in time for a major splash at the upcoming NBAA convention, scheduled for Oct. 17 through 19 in Orlando, Fla. More...

It's been a long time -- a very long time -- in the making, but Raytheon's Hawker 4000 "super mid-size" bizjet may soon get its FAA certification papers. First announced at NBAA in 1996 -- yes, 1996 -- company officials tell AVweb they expect FAA certification in advance of this year's NBAA annual meeting and convention, which is set for mid-October, as noted above. Most recently, however, Raytheon was forced to seek temporary exemptions from amended FAA certification regulations involving hydraulics and fuel tank safety. Under the two exemptions, Raytheon will be able to obtain type certification under the rules existing when the aircraft was first envisioned, and amend its paperwork and retrofit in-service aircraft after the fact. Like Adam and Eclipse, Raytheon told AVweb FAA certification of the Hawker 4000 is "imminent." According to Raytheon, it will have until June 1, 2007, to complete certification of the jet's hydraulic system at higher pressures. By Sept. 1, 2008, it must comply with revised standards to prevent fuel-tank explosions like the one attributed to the crash of TWA Flight 800. More...

Sino Swearingen's SJ30-2 Business 
Jet The SJ30-2 Is the World's Fastest Light Business Jet
Not only is it fast; it has intercontinental range — 560 mph and over 2800 sm range. The SJ30-2 is the most advanced light business jet in the sky today — the perfect package of speed, range, and good looks. For details, visit Sino Swearingen online.

With Eclipse and Adam seeming to make it across the finish line, whither Cessna? Will we also see a certified -- full, partial or provisional -- Cessna Citation Mustang in the near future? Maybe before or during the upcoming NBAA annual meeting and convention? While AVweb was unable to get anyone at Cessna to comment on the speculation, it is pulling out all the stops it can find to secure certification of the Citation Mustang VLJ before NBAA, and we wouldn't bet against it. As we have noted in the past, Cessna has earned an enviable reputation for bringing its new aircraft types through the FAA's paperwork process and into its customers' hands in a clockwork-like fashion. Now, word has reached AVweb that the company is making a big push to complete the required testing as soon as possible. More...

Pilot Insurance Center In a Group Plan & Think You're Getting the Best Deal on Life Insurance?
The Pilot Insurance Center (PIC) finds many people believe this is the case. Unfortunately, in some group plans you're only as good as your weakest link. Meaning, while you may be in excellent health, you may be paying a higher premium due to those in the group that aren't as healthy. From airline pilots to weekend warriors, PIC has saved pilots 30-60% on coverage through A+ rated carriers or better. Find out if you are getting the best deal. Call PIC today at (800) 380-8376, or visit online.

For years, industry players have been watching and commenting on who will be the big winner in the coming very light jet (VLJ) wars. Some say the first manufacturer to bring a VLJ to market will be the winner. This camp nominally would favor Eclipse and the Eclipse 500, since it received at least provisional certification last month. Others say the real winner will be the manufacturer with the best reputation for reliability and standing behind their VLJ product. Most in this corner would favor Cessna and its Citation Mustang. Still others, perhaps romantically, maintain the VLJ market is new enough and different enough that all the old rules don't apply. This camp, perhaps after having spent too much time at high altitude, believes the jury is still out. And, so far, it is. But a new theory on which will be the predominant VLJ has emerged: the one with the best lavatory. More...

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Rockwell Collins last week said it is expanding its Pro Line 21 Integrated Display System (IDS) offering with a new Supplemental Type Certification (STC) on King Air 200 and King Air 300 aircraft. According to the company, the Pro Line 21 IDS King Air installation integrates with the aircraft's existing autopilot and sensors and includes three 8-inch by 10-inch liquid crystal displays, a digital weather radar and Integrated Flight Information System (IFIS) providing electronic charts, approaches, airport diagrams and NOTAMs. An option to the IFIS package, included as part of the original STC, is XM Datalink graphical weather. Superior Aircraft Maintenance in Medford, Ore., will perform the installation and STC. The completed STC will be owned by Rockwell Collins and will be available to Rockwell Collins dealers. More...

Columbia Simplifies Buying & Selling All Aircraft Brands
Selling an aircraft can be a challenging odyssey. Aircraft owners need to: locate a broker with national resources to sell for top dollar; select and utilize the most effective advertising; access no-cost, no-obligation finance pre-qualification; consult aviation tax experts; and obtain insurance quotes with higher liability limits. Columbia Aircraft has created a tool to assist pilots and aircraft owners of all brands. Check out their web site.

Tempe, Ariz.-based Landmark Aviation earlier this month announced it had completed a $2 million hangar and office space project at its Raleigh, N.C., FBO facility. The expansion at the Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU) includes 13,500 square feet of additional space for aircraft storage and maintenance, a new three-bay ground equipment support hangar, and 4,800 square feet of office space. “This expansion provides additional hangar and work areas for our based tenants,” said Tracine Anderson, Landmark Aviation general manager at Raleigh. In addition, the FBO offers normal FBO services, including fueling, a pilot lounge and weather room. More...

Cessna said earlier this month is named Mark Paolucci, currently vice president of Citation Sales, to replace retiring Senior Vice President Ron Chapman as head of the company’s customer service organization. Paolucci will also assume Chapman’s position on Cessna’s Senior Leadership Team. Paolucci will be based at the company's headquarters in Wichita, Kan. Paolucci will assume his new responsibilities beginning Aug. 21, and Chapman will retire Oct. 2. Paolucci takes over a customer service group that includes 10 service centers in the U.S. and Europe, a network of authorized service centers around the world, and a parts distribution group based in Wichita. More...

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Cessna Aircraft Company on Monday delivered its 100th production Citation CJ3. Jeffrey Mark, chief executive officer, principal owner and co-founder of Mark-Taylor Residential Inc., an Arizona-based real estate development corporation, purchased the milestone aircraft. “I have always loved airplanes,” Mark said. “When I was a kid, my father was a pilot, and I flew radio-controlled airplanes. I have kept that passion for flying.” Mark has owned a Cessna CitationJet, a Citation CJ2 and now the Citation CJ3. A pilot for 16 years, Mark learned how to fly in a Cessna 172 Skyhawk. More...

Eclipse Aviation this month announced Saul Pacheco joined its executive team as vice president of quality. Pacheco was most recently the global director of quality and reliability for medical technology leader Medtronic, where he was responsible for all products released to the medical marketplace. At Medtronic, Pacheco led the evaluation of manufacturing processes, documentation, controls and procedures. Prior to that, he spent 11 years with Motorola in a variety of manufacturing and quality management roles. More...

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AVwebBiz is an every-other-week summary of the latest business aviation news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

Today's issue was written by Joseph E. (Jeb) Burnside (bio).

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