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February 15, 2005

Independence Air RJ Repossessed

Lendor Filed Suit Over Missed Payment

This isn't going to look good on somebody's credit report. Flyi, Inc., parent company of struggling start-up Independence Air, says one of its creditors repossessed a 50-seat regional jet, leaving the company with 72 in its fleet.

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GAMA Calls For Industry Cooperation To Increase Safety And System Capacity

During GAMA's well-attended Annual Industry Review and 2005 Outlook, the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) said that continuing to improve the margin of safety for general aviation is its highest priority in 2005, notwithstanding the fact that the number of general aviation fatal accidents reached an all time low in 2004.

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Picture This: Pilots Use Webcam To Check En Route Weather

"It's Like Looking Out Your Window"

In Alaska, where the difference between the sky and the mountain is often less than the width of a single-engine aircraft, seeing is believing. That's why a lot of pilots in the Great White North are starting to swear by a new FAA program that literally lets them eyeball crucial mountain passes along their routes.

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USAF Grounds 30 C130s

UK Won't Follow Suit -- For Now

The USAF has grounded 30 of its oldest C130 Hercules transports and has restricted the flight of another 60 after the discovery of wing stress cracks that were reportedly much more severe than anticipated.

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Richardson's Controversial Plane Sold

Going To Australia

First it was grounded. Now, it's been sold. So much for New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson's 1966 Aero Commander.

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Next Pentagon Contract Battle: Army Transport

If You Thought The VHX Marine One Contract Was Big, Just Hang On...

By ANN Senior Correspondent Kevin "Hognose" O'Brien Coming out of Heli-Expo, everyone is talking about the way that European manufacturers have been cleaning American clocks in the contract stakes. Now, there is a new contract looming on the horizon, one that is certain to see a European win, as both of the competitors are largely European. They will put on some American fig leaves as Agusta-Westland did to win the VHX contract, but large parts of this contract will go across the pond, no matter who wins.

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FSS Controller Outcry On The Rise

Another FSS Crew Joins Lawsuit Against FAA

It's no secret that controllers whose FSS jobs have been contracted to Lockheed-Martin are a rather unhappy lot. In fact, some of them are filing a class action lawsuit against the FAA, claiming the government is discriminating against them on the basis of their age.

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Coast Guard Rescues Downed GA Pilot

Pilot: Engine Quit, Plane Down In Swamp

A Coast Guard helicopter crew is credited with rescuing a downed pilot in a swamp near Savannah, GA, Sunday, after the pilot's recently restored Piper Super Cub apparently lost all engine power.

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Lindbergh Foundation to Host Two Events in Minnesota

Lindbergh Awards Going To Bertrand Piccard And Yolanda Kakabadse

The Charles A. and Anne Morrow Lindbergh Foundation is celebrating a homecoming this year by holding two very special events in its home state. On Friday evening, May 20, a hangar party entitled, "Legends of the Sky: Stories of History-Making Aircraft and Their Pilots" is planned at the Golden Wings Museum located at the Anoka County Airport in Blaine. This event is part of the Blaine Aviation Weekend and features Burt Rutan, widely known for capturing the $10 million Ansari X Prize for the first civilian aircraft to reach space twice in a two-week period. Proceeds from this event will benefit the Lindbergh Foundation, a public non-profit organization based in Anoka, MN.

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ExxonMobil Introduces Aviation Oil For Breaking In Aircraft Piston Engines

20W-50 Intended For Use Prior To Switching To Exxon Elite

ExxonMobil Aviation Lubricants has introduced Exxon Aviation Oil 20W-50, a non-dispersant lubricant for the break-in of new or newly overhauled aircraft piston engines. The multi-grade oil can be used year-round, in high- and low-temperature climates, and was designed for use before switching to Exxon Aviation Oil Elite 20W-50 (Exxon Elite).

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Where'd The Knife Go?

Newark Screener Reassigned After Missing Butcher Knife

A TSA screener at Newark Liberty International Airport has been reassigned after she apparently allowed a butcher knife contained in a woman's purse to get past the airport's security checkpoint.

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Man Found Hanged In Airport Closet

Apparently Hanged Himself Between Gate And Customs

The Essex County, NJ, medical examiner plans an autopsy this week after authorities say a 39-year old Maryland man, who had just returned to the US from Portugal, hanged himself in a janitor's closet at Newark Liberty International Airport over the weekend.

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Sport Pilot Examiners: The Next Wave

Our Own John Ballantyne Is Among Them!

The Light Sport Aviation Branch says the following eight examiner candidates have accepted invitations to attend the second Sport Pilot Examiner Initial Course to be held in Sebring, FL March 21 to 26.

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Indus Aviation Sets Up Training Academy In India

Will Also Export Manufacture Of T-211

The sport plane revolution appears to be heading east -- to India. The Indian Express reports Indus Aviation plans to open not only a low-cost training academy in Bangalore, India, but also plans to start manufacturing Thorpe T-211 aircraft there.

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Aero-News Quote Of The Day (02.15.05)

"Looking back on 2004, it is clear that it was the turning point for both the US economy and the GA industry. A great deal of this turn-around can be attributed to incentives provided by bonus depreciation.... All this bodes well for our future." Source: Trade association GAMA in its annual report, citing increases in GA deliveries and an overall boost from Washington in a quick turnaround from last years dismal delivery numbers.

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AD: BAE Systems

AD NUMBER: 2005-03-15 MANUFACTURER: BAE Systems SUBJECT: Airworthiness Directive 2005-03-15 SUMMARY: The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Model BAe 146 series airplanes and Model Avro 146-RJ series airplanes. This AD requires repetitive inspections to detect discrepancies of the fuselage skin and reinforcing plates along the wing to fuselage fairing access panels on the left- and right-hand sides of the airplane, and repair if necessary.

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AD: Eurocopter France

AD NUMBER: 2005-03-08 MANUFACTURER: Eurocopter France SUBJECT: Airworthiness Directive 2005-03-08 SUMMARY: This amendment adopts a new airworthiness directive (AD) for Eurocopter France (Eurocopter) Model AS350B, BA, B1, B2, B3, C, D, D1, and EC130 B4 helicopters that requires removing and modifying the fuel bleed lever.

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AD: Raytheon

AD NUMBER: 2005-03-16 MANUFACTURER: Raytheon SUBJECT: Airworthiness Directive 2005-03-16 SUMMARY: The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Raytheon Model DH.125, HS.125, and BH.125 series airplanes; BAe.125 series 800A (C-29A and U-125) and 800B airplanes; and Hawker 800 (including variant U-125A) and 800XP airplanes.

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AD: Airbus

AD NUMBER: 2005-03-14 MANUFACTURER: Airbus SUBJECT: Airworthiness Directive 2005-03-14 SUMMARY: This amendment supersedes an existing airworthiness directive (AD) that applies to all Airbus Model A300 B2 and B4 series airplanes. The existing AD currently requires determining the part and amendment number of the variable lever arm (VLA) of the rudder control system to verify the parts were installed using the correct standard, and corrective actions if necessary.

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AD: Airbus

AD NUMBER: 2005-03-12 MANUFACTURER: Airbus SUBJECT: Airworthiness Directive 2005-03-12 SUMMARY: This amendment adopts a new airworthiness directive (AD), applicable to certain Airbus Model A330, A340-200, and A340-300 series airplanes. This AD requires initial and repetitive inspections of certain frame stiffeners to detect cracking. If any cracking is found, this AD requires replacement of the stiffener with a new, reinforced stiffener. Replacement of the stiffener constitutes terminating action for certain inspections.

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AD: Eurocopter France

AD NUMBER: 2005-03-09 MANUFACTURER: Eurocopter France SUBJECT: Airworthiness Directive 2005-03-09 SUMMARY: This amendment adopts a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the specified Eurocopter France (Eurocopter) model helicopters. This action requires an initial and repetitive borescope inspection of the main gearbox (MGB) planet gear carrier or an initial and repetitive visual inspection of the MGB planet gear carrier for a crack.

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Looking Good! GAMA's 2005 Forecast

It's Getting Better All The Time

GAMA Monday released its 2005 forecast -- painting a rosy picture about the growth of general aviation manufacturing and looking back on what the association calls "unprecedented growth."

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The Numbers Are In!

GAMA Reports GA Manufacturing Output For 2004

General aviation manufacturers delivered slightly fewer than 3,000 aircraft during 2004, billing more than $11.9 billion.

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