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Volume 4, Number 22
November 7, 2006
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As this issue of AVweb's AVwebBiz was being finalized, mid-term election polling places were just closing and votes across the U.S. were still being counted. Based on the expected close races in some areas, several days may pass before the leadership and composition of the 110th Congress, which convenes in January, will be known. Until then the election's impact, if any, on the general and business aviation industry can only be measured by looking at the U.S. Representatives and Senators in close races and the final outcome. As one example, if the majorities in either or both houses of the U.S. Congress change as a result of the election, so will the chairmen and senior minority members of the respective aviation subcommittees. As another example, two members of the Senate Subcommittee on Aviation -- Conrad Burns, R-Mont., the panel's chairman, and George Allen, R-Va. -- were facing tough re-election challenges. In the U.S. House of Representatives, where all members were up for re-election, the unknowns were less about whether individuals would be re-elected and more about which party would have a majority and be setting the agenda. At stake is the outcome of several aviation issues during the next two years, including the 2007 FAA reauthorization bill and the fate of user-fee proposals. More...

Adam Aircraft Designs & Manufactures the A700 AdamJet & A500 Centerline Piston Twin
The Adam Aircraft A700 features twin Williams FJ-33 engines, state-of-the-art avionics, and comfortable seating for eight (or seven with an aft lavatory). The A700 is currently undergoing flight test and development. The Adam Aircraft A500 centerline piston twin has been Type Certified by the FAA and offers superior safety, range, and performance, along with the pressurized comfort of a roomy six-seat interior. For complete details on both aircraft, go online.

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board last week said it wanted the FAA to ensure each Part 135 air taxi operator "can demonstrate to the FAA that it is maintaining adequate operational control over all on-demand charter flights conducted under the authority of its certificate." The recommendation was one of several handed down by the NTSB as it concluded its investigation into the Feb. 2, 2005, crash of a Bombardier Challenger CL-600-1A11, at the Teterboro Airport (KTEB) in New Jersey. According to the NTSB, the jet rolled off the departure end of KTEB's Runway 6 at a ground speed of about 110 knots, through a perimeter fence, across a six-lane highway and into a parking lot before impacting a building. The two pilots were seriously injured, as were two occupants in a vehicle; the airplane was destroyed. The NTSB's finding of probable cause concluded the Challenger's center of gravity was "well forward of the forward takeoff limit, which prevented the airplane from rotating at the intended rotation speed." The NTSB also found the flight was operated by Platinum Jet Management, LLC (PJM) of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., under a management agreement with Darby Aviation (Darby) based in Muscle Shoals, Ala. According to the NTSB, PJM conducted charter flights without proper FAA certification or compliance with Part 135. More...

Weather the Holidays with the New Garmin GPSMap 496
JA Air Center, Your Garmin Source, has the new Garmin GPSMap 496 with XM Weather, Terrain, AOPA Airport Guide, Taxiway Database, and built-in StreetPilot Automotive GPS in stock for immediate delivery. Call JA Air Center at (800) 323-5966, or order online.
If you are looking to sell your current GPS, JA Air Center Purchases Used GPS and Avionics — call for current values.

Visit the new GPSMap 496 Blog for more information on this exciting new product from Garmin.

FedEx said yesterday it will acquire 15 new Boeing 777 Freighter aircraft, with options to purchase an additional 15 of the big twins. FedEx's decision to purchase the 777F was made after Airbus announced significant delays in delivery of the A380 cargo version; FedEx also said it had notified Airbus that it has cancelled its order for 10 A380-800Fs. "Global demand for air cargo and express services continues to grow rapidly and FedEx has made significant investments in our network to meet customers’ needs and fulfill our business objectives. Therefore, it was necessary and prudent for us to acquire the Boeing 777 Freighter," said Frederick W. Smith, chairman, president and chief executive officer, FedEx Corp.FedEx Express continues to be Airbus' largest wide-body airplane customer and will add additional new and used Airbus wide-body aircraft to its fleet in coming years. Six new A300-600 aircraft are scheduled to join the FedEx fleet in 2007 More...

Cessna yesterday handed over the keys to its 100th Citation Sovereign business jet, just over two years after the first example of its type was delivered. The 100th Sovereign was sold to Canada-based Agrium, a global producer and marketer of agricultural nutrients, industrial products, and fertilizers, and a major supplier of agricultural products and services in North and South America, and closely followed the company's 100th delivery of a Citation CJ3, which took place slightly more than two months earlier. The Citation Sovereign received its FAA type certificate in June 2004; it is currently one of Cessna's top three best-selling business jet models worldwide. It has a 459-knot cruise speed, 2,847-mile range, 3,640-foot takeoff distance, 2,650-foot landing distance and a 47,000-foot ceiling. The eight-passenger Citation CJ3, also one of the three best-selling Cessna business jets, was certificated in October 2004. It has a maximum cruise speed of 417 knots, 1,875-mile range, 3,180-foot takeoff distance, 2,770-foot landing distance and a 45,000-foot ceiling. More...

Fly in Ultra-Comfort with LightSPEED Headsets:
"Custom ear molds made my Mach 1 as quiet as any headset I've tried." — Bing Lantis, President of Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing. Discover what thousands of pilots already have: the most comfortable headsets in the industry. The in-the-ear Mach 1 weighs less than 1 oz.; the full-size Thirty 3G, just under 16 ounces and uses soft conform-foam ear cushions. Try a LightSPEED headset with a 30-day money back guarantee. To order, contact a LightSPEED dealer or call (800) 332-2421 (PST, business hours). View the 60-second video clip!

Brazilian authorities have detained two U.S. pilots since the Sept. 29 midair collision involving their brand-new Embraer Legacy 600 business jet and a Boeing 737, operating as Gol Airlines Flight 1907. The two pilots, Joseph Lepore and Jan Paladino, have been "guests" of the Brazilian government ever since they managed to land their damaged jet at a remote military base. Authorities held the two -- both a state and a federal judge ordered the pilots to relinquish their passports -- while an investigation was underway. At one point, Brazilian authorities appeared ready to accuse the crew of manslaughter in the Boeing crash. Now it appears an ATC error may be responsible for the collision, which resulted in the deaths of all 154 aboard the Boeing. According to the Folha de Sao Paulo newspaper and citing a cockpit voice recorder transcript it said it obtained, air traffic controllers reportedly cleared the Embraer to cruise at FL370, the same altitude being used by the Boeing. More...

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.

AirCell, the airborne telecommunications manufacturer, last week said the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has granted its request for specific radio frequencies, enabling the company to provide exclusive broadband connectivity to U.S. airlines and business aircraft beginning in early 2008. The company said its initial service offerings to the airline market will include wireless Internet connectivity and airline operational communications capabilities; services available for business aviation operators at about the same time will be similar. AirCell said its current customers with an AirCell Axxess communications system can add the forthcoming broadband link by installing the appropriate radio and a small, air-to-ground antenna. 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.

It used to be that the only thing simple about buying a fractional share of a business jet was you knew you had to write a series of big checks. In recent years, fractional operators have worked at simplifying their offerings, including so-called "jet cards," which are essentially pre-paid charter agreements. Now, Connecticut-based CitationShares, a joint venture of Cessna and TAG Aviation USA, late last month said it has launched a new program for fractional customers offering payment predictability, customized program options and cost savings "never before seen in the industry." The new program, dubbed "Citelines by CitationShares," encourages customers to fly on non-peak days and save. The program also combines all management and operating costs for the year into one predictable payment. More...

Alan H. Conklin, co-founder of Conklin & de Decker, a leading business aviation research, consulting and education firm, died last week near his home in Orleans, Mass. He was 86. Conklin first began his aviation career as an instrument instructor pilot for the U.S. Army Air Corps in the early 1940s; later, he served as a cargo pilot for the U.S. Air Force. Once leaving the military, his career seemingly saw him staying ahead of business aviation's "wave": In the 1950s, he sold Aero Commanders, Trekker Gulls and eventually Cessnas through a Minneapolis distributor and went on to market King Airs for Atlantic Aviation in the 1960s. In the 1970s, he sold Falcon Jets for AiResearch then Pan Am Business Jets where he became National Sales Manager and met a young engineer named Bill de Decker More...

Aviation Consumer — The Only Magazine with the Guts to Tell You the Truth
Tell you the truth about the gear you buy and the planes you fly. Aviation Consumer is packed with in-depth and uncompromising ratings of equipment, avionics, accessories, mods, services, aircraft and much more. Order online and receive unlimited no-cost use of Aviation Consumer's ratings-packed web archives!

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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