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Textron introduced a mockup of its all-new Cessna single-engine turbroprop today at EAA AirVenture, and also announced that the model has been named “Denali.” The name captures the new airplane’s “rugged, yet refined” qualities, the company said. “The Denali will balance great handling characteristics with the enhanced capability of a high-performance turboprop, making it a great step-up airplane for piston owners who are ready for more performance,” said Kriya Shortt, Textron's vice president of marketing. The cockpit will feature the Garmin G3000 touchscreen avionics suite, with high-resolution multifunction displays, split-screen capability, weather radar, a terrain warning system and ADS-B capabilities, Shortt said.

The airplane will be powered by an all-new engine now under development by GE. The FADEC-equipped, 1,240 shaft horsepower-rated turboprop engine will feature single-lever power and propeller control and a 4,000-hour TBO. The airplane also will be equipped with McCauley’s new 105-inch diameter composite, 5-blade constant-speed propeller. First flight is expected in 2018. It won't be the only airplane named after the Alaskan mountain -- American Champion also flies the Denali Scout bush plane. Textron's mock-up will be open for viewing all week at their exhibit at AirVenture.

AVweb's Russ Niles took a tour of the mockup, click here for the video.

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In response to customer demand, Avidyne announced a growing list of third-party navigation apps that will work with its IFD550/540/440 GPS navigators. The current list of apps now includes ForeFlight Mobile, Seattle Avionics FlyQ, Jeppesen Mobile Flight Deck, AVPlan EFB, Cloud Ahoy and AeroGlass.

This connectivity is the result of Avidyne's wireless SDK (software developer kit), an open architecture concept that appears to be working. Introduced one year ago, Avidyne's SDK provides two tiers of connectivity between Avidyne's panel-mounted avionics and portable devices running iOS, Android and the Windows operating system. Avidyne previously announced its own iPad app—the IFD100—which serves as a mirrored display of the IFD540/550, including AHARS data self-contained in the IFD550. Avidyne says the app should be available in the coming months.

Avidyne also announced Master Flight Instructor Gary Reeves and pilotsafety.org as a training partner for its IFD-series GPS systems. "Avidyne will be the first major avionics company to provide training resources for owners," Reeves said. By using an inflight video-based curriculum, IFD owners and prospects get real-world exposure to the products.

The training will include both free and paid curriculums, and will include a three-day one-on-one intensive master training program in the owner's aircraft at their home airport. 

Visit www.avidyne.com for more.

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PPC Preps for Opening Day

One of the most popular sites at EAA AirVenture in recent years has been the Pilot Proficiency Center, which keeps adding new features to help pilots stay current and learn new skills. This year, Redbird is offering 12 simulators, an MCX full-motion device, and an Xwind crosswind trainer. The sims offer more than 30 scenarios to choose from, plus the ability to save your session for later review. The PPC has added one-third more space and moved to the Four Corners at show center. Pilots who attend daily tech talks and take sim time are eligible for FAA Wings credit. Redbird also has brought along its new P40 Warhawk simulator, but it’s not in the PPC.

Redbird built the custom, full-motion simulator of a Curtiss P-40 Warhawk to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The simulator, based on Redbird’s MX2 platform, will be displayed during AirVenture at the Pacific Aviation Museum exhibit (Main Aircraft Display Space 445). “It is an honor to commemorate this event and help tell the story of this important date in world history,” said Redbird Flight CEO Todd Willinger. “The Pacific Aviation Museum’s theme for the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor is ‘Honoring the Past, Inspiring the Future’ and we’re proud to be able to bring this simulator to AirVenture and do just that.”

Curtiss P-40 Warhawk

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With cameras everywhere these days, it was no surprise that one recorded dramatic video of a single-engine airplane crashing into a house in East Haddam, Connecticut, on Saturday, badly injuring the pilot. The airplane, which hasn’t yet been identified, had just taken off from Goodspeed Airport on the bank of the Connecticut River, 25 miles southeast of Hartford.

From the video, it appears as though the aircraft spun into the house, hitting the roof and causing significant structural damage. A man inside the house was not injured, according to authorities, and there was no fire. The pilot was identified as Benjamin Temple, 46, of East Rockaway, New York. He was taken by medical helicopter to a nearby trauma center.

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Small piston aircraft were exempted from today’s “endangerment finding” issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, but the finding means new regulations will be forthcoming to target greenhouse-gas emissions from many jet engines, the agency said. “Aircraft are the third largest contributor to GHG emissions in the U.S. transportation sector, and these emissions are expected to increase in the future,” said Janet McCabe, EPA’s acting assistant administrator for air and radiation. “EPA has already set effective GHG standards for cars and trucks, and any future aircraft engine standards will also provide important climate and public health benefits.” GHG emissions contribute to climate change, which threatens Americans’ health and their environment, the EPA said.

U.S. aircraft emit roughly 12 percent of GHG emissions from the country’s transportation sector and 29 percent of GHG emissions from all aircraft globally, the EPA said. Under the Clean Air Act, EPA will consult with the FAA as it develops aircraft engine emissions standards. By law, any new standards EPA sets must not cause a significant increase in noise or adversely affect safety. The EPA cited carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride in jet emissions as gases in need of regulation.

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Jeppesen announced this week its terminal charts are now integrated into the Garmin Pilot application for iOS users. The partnership between the two companies has expanded the app’s features such as Jeppesen navigation data to include Jeppesen charts, allowing pilots to fly with geo-referenced approaches and other capabilities within the Garmin app on iPads and other iOS devices. Existing customers who have Garmin Pilot IFR Premium and Jeppesen data subscriptions can now access Jeppesen charts on the app at no additional charge. New customers can begin using the charts on Garmin Pilot by subscribing to Jeppesen charting services, downloading the app to their device and subscribing to Garmin Pilot IFR Premium.

While Garmin Pilot is available on iOS and Android devices, Jeppesen says the chart feature is currently available for iPhone and iPad. “Teaming with our long-standing partner Garmin to provide Jeppesen terminal charts for the Garmin Pilot app marks a new era for the availability of Jeppesen charts,” said Reggie Arsenault, Jeppesen director of general aviation client management. “While we will continue to support Jeppesen Mobile FliteDeck, we view Garmin Pilot as a premier cockpit app and we will work together to deliver innovative charting and flight data capabilities.”

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For details, click here to learn more about Starr Aviation.

Sonex aims to work with local partners to promote the idea of home-building airplanes from kits in China, the company said this week in a news conference at EAA AirVenture. Sonex will work with Francis Chao, of the Beijing Aviation Technology Company, to promote its line of kit airplanes and help grow the base of aviation enthusiasts in the country. “[Chao] clearly has the right vision for GA in China, and the tenacity to make it happen,” said Mark Schaible, general manager of Sonex. BAT has established a new Aviation Education Center in Beijing, where the companies hope to attract new people to aviation.

The downtown location of the Center will "attract people off the street,” Schaible said. “We want to bring the private citizen into aviation.” The current aviation infrastructure in China supports training mainly for the airlines and military, Schaible added, with little infrastructure in place to support private flying for business or recreation. “In order for privatized GA to grow and succeed in China, a network of private A&P and flight schools must be established,” Schaible said.

Listen to a podcast interview with Chao by AVweb's Elaine Kauh on the future of personal flying in China.

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PS Engineering unveiled two new audio panels to its lineup: the PMA450A and the PMA8000G. The PMA450A picks up where the older PMA450 left off and has a larger enhanced display and an easy-to-read white-text-on-black Organic Light Emitting Display (OLED). It also gets a new bezel-mounted USB-C charging port, which is smaller and more powerful than the previous one.

The new USB-C standard connector is non-directional and non-gendered, which means both ends are the same, and there is no up or down—making it easier to connect a device. The power output also increases from 10 to 15 watts.

Also added to the PMA450A is an optional Bluetooth module called PS Streamer, for wirelessly streaming cockpit audio signals—from radios or everything the pilot hears, to compatible action cameras.

The PMA450A also adds an independent Bluetooth music input for distribution—increasing the available sources to three—for streaming to any seat on the intercom.  This means the pilot, copilot and passengers all can share, or listen independently, their music source of choice.

List price of the PMA450A is $2595, while the PS Streamer Bluetooth module is $149.95.

The company also introduced the PMA8000G, which is based on the original PMA8000 platform, but with more features, including the new Flightmate. This audio storage/recall system provides an extra layer of alerting and quick access to audio checklists. 

The Flightmate system allows the pilot to record alert messages that can be triggered by some event or switch in the aircraft, like a stall warning or autopilot disconnect. These four logic inputs trigger specific messages pre-recorded by the pilot. In addition, there is over two minutes of recording time to store brief checklists or other information, which can be played back at the push of a button. 

The PMA8000G also has subtle changes in styling. The indicator windows are gone, the button text is larger and is also used to indicate selection by changing from white to green. There is also a USB charging port, capable of 10 watts of power.

The PMA8000G also has the company's spatial audio system called IntelliAudio, with Head Related Transfer Function, or HRTF.  When HRTF is activated, the crew will hear COM 1 at a 10 o’clock position, while COM 2 appears to come from the 2 o’clock position, as one example. This spatial audio feature helps the brain process audio sources, adding comprehension and easy listening to multiple radios.

As an option, the PMA8000G can be equipped with the above-mentioned PS Streamer Bluetooth module. List price of the PMA8000G is $2295.

For more information, contact www.ps-engineering.com

The following was heard as my wife and I were flying our Mooney over the northern tip of the Great Salt Lake a few days ago and communicating with Salt Lake Center.

Transient aircraft: "Center, do you have time for a question?"

SL Center: ”Sure, go ahead."

Transient aircraft: ”OK, this is the $65 question. Looking below, we can see a train track, shoreline and a reddish area with what look like waves. What is that all about?"

Silence for a short while, then a response from an airliner: "My daughter is a PhD biologist and explained to me that the red color comes from Halobacteria growing in the salt water."

Transient aircraft: "Thank you very much! You win the $65 prize and we greatly appreciate the explanation!"

SL Center: "That's a whole lot better than any explanation we could come up with here at Center."

Another short pause

Airliner: ”That PhD cost a lot more than $65."

The exchange is somewhat paraphrased, other than the punchline. We were laughing too hard by the end for me to copy the exact dialogue.


 

Dan Roberston 

 

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What of Vickers?

Our Elaine Kauh suffered the ultimate indignity for a journalist on Sunday: no free lunch. As I mentioned in Monday’s blog, Vickers Aircraft was supposed to sponsor a media lunch on Sunday to talk about their new Wave amphibian. Except, they weren’t.

Company owner Paul Vickers dropped me an email on Monday. “We are only planning to publically present any information about the Wave once we have actually delivered aircraft. We don't want to fall into the same traps as others by coming out full swing way too soon. I had a brief discussion with the EAA people last year about what they can offer as a show package; part of this was a media lunch. As we were not going to be ready for this Oshkosh the discussion with them didn't go any further nor did we confirm anything for the show. The first I knew about this lunch was in your blog today.”

I don’t know which is more tragic. Elaine’s missed lunch or somebody actually learning of something through my blog. I’m sending Elaine a coupon for a free funnel cake. We’ll have to wait until next year to learn more about the Wave. --Paul Bertorelli

Flying for fun

The main reason thousands of pilots fly their annual pilgrimage here is arguably one of the best indicators of GA’s health. How? This category of flying is truly discretionary; you can spend money flying, owning and upgrading your airplane, but you don’t have to. The key word here is upgrading, which is really the marker for whether pilots are feeling good about the GA economy. And this week, they seem to be demanding more ways to enhance their fun, because the aircraft makers who cater to them have been busy improving their offerings to faster, stronger and more powerful.

Take CubCrafters’ XCub, Bearhawk Aircraft’s Bravo and the new Remos GXiS, just to name a few of the light-plane vendors who are out showing new takes on their popular models. They point to customer demand driving things like improved engines, landing performance, new avionics and more useful load. It’s good to see these companies actively working to give pilots what they’re willing to buy. That should keep this corner of GA growing after its recent struggles. Hopefully, the next couple of years will see enough new innovations, no matter how small, to attract future pilots. They’re the ones who can benefit from this new stuff becoming more common, more affordable and, of course, more fun. --Elaine Kauh

My World for a Hat

Something that’s never in short supply at AirVenture is souvenir hats. If an OEM is introducing a new product or just hyping an old one just about anyone who wants one can have one. So what’s Jeppesen’s secret sauce? The company sells tickets to its chart seminars and those who buy online can get a free hat, but it obviously doesn’t bring enough for everyone so patrons are lined up around the block on Knapp Street to get their “free” hat. We don’t get it. That many people standing in the blazing sun for a hat? But Jeppesen has clearly figured it out. --Russ Niles

Follow Me || TBM 900

Cessna announced the name of its new high-performance single turboprop at AirVenture 2016. Cessna's Rosa Lee Argotsinger took us through the newly unveiled cabin mock-up of the Denali.

Does Your Headset Bend the Rules? || See the AKG AV100 at AirVenture Booths B-2095-2098

Each week, we poll the savviest aviators on the World Wide Web (that's you) on a topic of interest to the flying community.

Visit AVweb.com to participate in our current poll.

Click here to view the results of past polls.

TKM Avionics || MX170C & MX300 || Direct Slide-In Replacement Nav/Comms You Can Install Yourself in Minutes
Picture of the Week
AirVenture 2016 Photo Gallery

The AVweb staff is prowling the AirVenture 2016 grounds with cameras in hand. Here's the first haul.

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At 94, Major Fredric Arnold (ret.), sole surviving member of his WWII P-38 class-of-42J group, is sculpting a monumental bronze sculpture in memory of the more than 88,000 WWII U.S. airmen killed in action.

A20 Aviation Headset || Now with Enhanced Features

The long-awaited Third Class medical exemption finally passed and was signed into law by the president last week. However, as you'll learn in this podcast with senior Aviation Medical Examiner Ian Blair Fries, for pilots with special issuances, there are still many more questions to be resolved before we know how the new law will benefit pilots worried about their medicals.

Jay Leno Installs an MVP-50 from Electronics International into His Eco Jet Car || Click to Watch

Heard anything funny, unusual, or downright shocking on the radio lately? If you've been flying any length of time, you're sure to have eavesdropped on a few memorable exchanges. The ones that gave you a chuckle may do the same for your fellow AVweb readers. Share your radio funny with us, and, if we use it in a future "Short Final," we'll send you a sharp-looking AVweb hat to sport around your local airport. No joke.

Click here to submit your original, true, and previously unpublished story.

All-in-One ADS-B || Garmin GTX 345

Periodically, we run a sampling of the letters received to our editorial inbox. One letter that's particularly relevant, informative, or otherwise compelling will headline this section as our "Letter of the Week," and we'll send the author an official AVweb baseball cap as a "thank you" for interacting with us (and the rest of our readership).

Send us your comments and questions using this form. Please include your mailing address in your e-mail (just in case your letter is our "Letter of the Week"); by the same token, please let us know if your message is not intended for publication.

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