The Best We've Ever Made
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|AVflash! Tighter Times for Public, Private
DEVISING BUDGET CUT MEASURES
FAA senior staff are expected to
outline details early this week of the implementation of $600 million in
budget cuts mandated by the sequestration measures signed into law by
President Obama over the weekend. Last week, a letter to FAA employees
from Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and FAA Administrator Michael
Huerta outlined the broad strokes of the plan, which will include
furloughing most employees for at least a couple of days a month and
closing or curtailing operations at 160 towers. An FAA spokesman told
AVweb over the weekend that the nitty gritty of implementing the
plan, including the timing of the measures, will be communicated to
staff this week. It's expected that most of the measures won't be
implemented for about a month because of notice requirements for
employees. A glimpse of what might be coming was the subject of a Feb.
26 meeting between high-ranking FAA officials and members of the full
range of affected aviation organizations. One of the attendees issued a
circulated memo that might illustrate the mood at 800 Independence
WORKFORCE CUTS UNRELATED TO BATTERY
Boeing has announced
plans to shed hundreds of contract jobs at its North Charleston, S.C.,
facility where it builds 787 Dreamliners, but says the cuts are
unrelated to current problems with the aircraft. The company said the
cuts have already begun and are expected to run through 2013 as part of
a cost-reduction initiative that pre-dated the aircraft's ongoing battery
issues. At the same time, and over the same period, Boeing says it
plans in 2013 to double the pace of production of 787 airliners made at
the plant and a facility in Washington state. More...
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Is There Anything More
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BEGINS BIOFUEL EMISSIONS FLIGHT TESTS
NASA is flying a DC-8
"flying laboratory" out of its Dryden facility to conduct biofuel tests
that aim to collect data on emissions, engine performance and contrails
with biofuels, the agency announced Friday. The flights began on Feb. 28
and will continue for three weeks. The Alternative Fuel Effects on
Contrails and Cruise Emissions (ACCESS) research will take the DC-8 as
high as 40,000 feet. A NASA Falcon jet will fly in trail collecting data
over a range of 300 feet to 10 miles behind the larger jet. The DC-8
will be flown on both JP-8 jet fuel and a 50-50 blend of JP8 and fuel
derived from camelina
plants. But commercial aircraft flying in the region may also serve
as targets of opportunity for the test, according to NASA.
IMPULSE PREPARES FOR U.S. FLIGHT
The Solar Impulse's
HB-SIA solar-powered aircraft has been delivered disassembled to Moffett
field, California, and its team has started the process of reassembling
it in preparation for a four-stop flight across America. The aircraft's
wing spans more than 205 feet and is covered with nearly 12,000
photovoltaic cells that run four 10-horsepower electric motors. The
cells also charge the aircraft's lithium-polymer battery packs. In
flight, the 3,527-pound plane cruises at less than 50 mph. Test flights
will be made prior to the transcontinental journey. Stops, other than
Washington, D.C., and New York, have not been precisely identified. The
program last summer suffered setbacks. More...
Masimo Introduces a Pulse
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SAFEST EVER FOR AIRLINES
The International Air Transport
Association (IATA) says 2012 was the safest year ever for airline travel and it
continues a trend that has made air travel by far the least hazardous
way of moving around, except perhaps in Africa. IATA says there were a
total of 75 airliner accidents in 2012, down from 92 in 2011. Of the 75
accidents, 15 involved fatalities, killing a total of 414 people. In
2011, 486 people died in 22 airline accidents. Africa remains the most
dangerous place to fly in the world. More...
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TRAILS CONCEPT PROMOTED
A California pilot is hoping there
will eventually be a series of "Sky Trails" over areas of national
importance that pilots can use to view them from the best vantage point.
Larry Dighera recently finished putting together an interpretive
website that pilots can use as a guide for touring the vast Second
World War Desert Training Center devised by Gen. George Patton to get
recruits ready for the land war in Europe and Africa. The facility
covers 18,000 square miles of high desert from the Mexican border north
almost to Las Vegas and was home to as many as 250,000 troops and 5,000
tanks conducting mock battles and undergoing rigorous training for the
RESCUES DEER ON ICE
The concern of a
retired wildlife service officer and the deft hands (and feet) of a
wildlife service pilot led to the happy reunion of a mother deer and
fawn beside a frozen Canadian bay in early February. Former biologist
Ian Waugh was at his home on Antigonish Harbour in Nova Scotia when he
spotted the deer on the glassy ice. The mother had fallen and was unable
to get up as her nervous offspring appeared to be trying to help. Waugh
knew the ice was too thin for a personal rescue attempt so he called his
former employer, the Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources, and grabbed his video camera. Helicopter pilot David
Farrell was dispatched and knew from a previous rescue he could use
rotor wash to push the deer to safety. Waugh, who kept his camera
rolling, was surprised. "I was waiting for a dart gun to come out, a
tranquilizer gun to come out," Waugh told CTV News. More...
The Biggest Aviation
Show on the Planet ... Is Back!
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.
MARCH 4, 2013
Letter of the Week: Crossing the
I just read the "Short
Final" section of the Feb. 25 issue of AVweb. I get the joke,
but I wonder if you folks understand the impact this kind of joke has on
current and potential women aviators?
By way of full disclosure: I
am a middle-age white guy. I teach at a small state-run aviation
university, I am an 11-year Air Force veteran, and I am old enough that
I should be the primary demographic focus of this joke, but I do not
find it humorous at all.
After watching first-hand all the crap
that the first group of women had to endure when they were allowed to
fly aboard the E-3 Sentry and continuing to listen to the stories of our
recent women graduates about all the crap they continue to have to put
up with, I would ask you to reconsider the publication of similar jokes
in the future.
I am pretty sure that none of you had any malicious
intent when publishing this joke. I am also pretty sure that none of you
intended this "Short Final" to scare women away from aviation. But as
aviators I think we all have a duty to recognize, especially when we are
in positions of power or influence, that what we say and do can have a
very powerful influence over our younger charges. I have become
especially aware of this since becoming a teacher.
So the favor
that I ask is simply that you become a bit more introspective and think
about the impact of the material you publish.
I doubt you would
publish a "Short Final" where the punchline related to a pilot doing
something dangerous or illegal. That would send the wrong message. I ask
that you take the same precautions when contemplating publication of
material that could send the message that women are not welcome
here to read the rest of this week's letters. More...
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OIL FILTERS COMPARED
An oil filter is an
oil filter, right? Generally, yes but there are some subtle
differences between the two aviation oil filters on the market,
Champion's line and the newer Tempest product. Aviation
Consumer's Larry Anglisano recently compared the two brands, and
this video summarizes his findings. More...
HISTORIC FLIGHT FOUNDATION DC-3
Washington's Historic Flight Foundation recently flew home its newly
restored DC-3 from Sealand Aviation in Campbell River, British Columbia.
The museum's founder, John Sessions, talks about the aircraft's rich
history and its future at the Foundation. More...
Traditional Tactics Need a
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OF THE WEEK: WEST HOUSTON AIRPORT (KIWS)
AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to West
Houston Airport (KIWS) in Houston, Texas.
reader Trevor Fenimore recommended the FBO:
I spent three months working out of West
Houston Airport doing Aerial Survey, and this FBO was the best I have
used during my eight months on the road. They were always very
professional and courteous. Breakfast is catered free for customers
every morning. There are massage chairs with big-screen TVs, a 3-D
cinema, and an excellent flight planning room with multiple computers.
The line staff is very efficient and will have you back in the air in no
time with a clean windshield and full tanks. Reduced fuel prices on the
weekends. Truly a first-rate FBO!
Keep those nominations
coming. For complete contest rules, click
AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBOs in
the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here
next Monday! More...
Jacksonville Center asked a military flight over
norther Florida a question:
"Dixie 22, confirm you are a flight of two."
"Dixie22. That is correct. We are a flight of
"Well, sir, I show you 17
miles in trail. That is a pretty loose formation, don't you
"Dixie 22. Roger."
THE AVWEBFLASH TEAM
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latest news, articles, products, features, and events featured on
world's premier independent aviation news resource.
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here or contact Tom Bliss,
e-mail or via telephone [(480)
here to send a letter to the
editor. (Please let us know if your letter is not
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about the news should be sent
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