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July 31, 2004

Europa SportPlane Kit Manufacturer 'Bankrupt?'

Weeks Of Worries Culminate In Bad News

Rumors of serious trouble with the once-high-flying Europa kit aircraft operation in the UK have been confirmed at Oshkosh 2004. After a number of complaints from builders were reported to ANN; evidence accumulated that confirmed that a number of orders for parts and components have gone undelivered, calls are not being returned, and the UK company is now embroiled in legal difficulties that one Oshkosh display staffer and kit-builder termed "Bankruptcy" (or the UK equivalent).

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Aero-News Plane of the Day: Gyroflug Speed Canard

The Very Last One Flying

This German manufactured aircraft, designated SC-01B by the FAA, packs a lot of good things in a small package. It will carry two people at a nifty 156Kts, using only 8.5 GPH. The aircraft will travel about 1,000 miles before needing a fuel stop It is full IFR. There's one slight drawback: Pack light. There's a 30-pound limit on baggage. Owner Mike McEvoy flies into Oshkosh from California each year. He had hoped to participate in this years AirVenture Cup Race but mechanical difficulties have kept him from competing. Mechanical issues also forced him to drop out of the race last year. But McEvoy is plucky. He promises to be back next year.

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Gee, Look At The Pretty Seaplanezzzzzz...

Aviation Dreaming On A Summer's Day

Sometimes, AirVenture can be just a bit much for a young body. So it seemed with this young man, caught napping on the dock at the Seaplane base in Oshkosh (WI).

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Paul Petrehn Wins 2004 US National Hot Air Balloon Title

Following in his older brother's footsteps, Paul Petrehn of Ann Arbor (MI) has won the 2004 US National Hot Air Balloon Championship in Anderson (SC).

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So It's Come To This

Machinists Sue UAL Over Pensions

It's getting ugly. The controversy brewing between bankrupt United Airlines and its unions over pensions has now spilled over into open court. The Machinists Union is suing the world's number-two carrier for stopping payments to the pension plan.

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If At First You Don't Succeed...

AAL Tries Again To Raise Fares

This just hasn't been a very good year for fare hikes. More than a half-dozen times so far this year, airlines have tried to increase ticket prices and each time the effort has been shot down by low-cost carriers' refusal to match the hikes.

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Opposition to Jetport West Gets Teeth

ATC Expert Backs Opponents To Texas Airport

The Jetport West Airport project proposed for the city of Fulshear (TX) "presents an irreconcilable conflict with several local airports, making it fundamentally unsafe and a hazard to navigable airspace."

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Rejecting Criticism, Air Force Leaders Support C-130J Program

Air Force officials are standing by the C-130J Hercules as the aircraft prepares to join the fight, despite a recent Department of Defense inspector general report criticizing the program.

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How to Get Your Hands on a Mustang

Well, At Least You Get Close...

Allen Maki gets more hands-on time with a P-51 than Lee Lauderback. Well, then, why isn't he world famous? Probably because he's not a P-51 pilot. He's a professional aircraft detailer.

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Harrison Ford Takes Over As Young Eagles Chairman

By ANN Contributor Tyson V. Rininger

On July 31st, 1992, Young Eagle's Chairman Cliff Robertson and EAA President Tom Poberezny flew the first Young Eagles at AirVenture. From that point on, it was the EAA's mission to fly a million young people by the 100th anniversary of powered flight in 2003. In 1994, General Chuck Yeager (USAF, Ret.) took over as chairman of the Young Eagle's program. He continued the quest until March, 2004. Over the past several years, Ford has done his share, flying almost 200 Young Eagles and taking the reigns as the newest chairman.

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Republic Airlines Reborn

Receives Amended DOT Authorization

Republic Airways Holdings says its Republic Airlines subsidiary has received authorization from the US. Department of Transportation to engage in air transportation using the Embraer 170 aircraft as a member of the United Express family under a code share agreement with United Airlines. This authorization is subject to the airline meeting the specific requirements of the FAA in order to receive its Air Carrier Certificate. Nonetheless, this is a critical step in the airlines efforts to begin commercial passenger operations.

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Will Your Airplane Run Out Of Fuel... For Good?

Here at AirVenture 2004, one of the most interesting to see are the smaller forums. One of the ones being held today drew our attention; it was a presentation on the future of avgas, the leaded fuel the vast majority of our piston-engine aircraft need to get us from here to there.

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Heavy-Breathing: A First Look At Lancair’s Columbia 400 (Part Five)

233 Kts, FL230, 26 Minutes From Brake Release... Wow! Part Five

While tanking up for the flight back to GIF and the run to altitude, Mark made arrangements to load up on some oxygen at a local FBO. What happened next was worrisome. Some greasy (and I do mean, greasy) kid walked a poorly restrained oxygen bottle out to the aircraft...

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A Party for Paris

No, No, Not THAT Paris...

Instead, it's about the pioneering Paris Jet, first flown on July 29, 1954 -- fifty years ago. The noisy machine was conceived as a personal business jet, but found a niche as a fast liaison plane in the French military. Ironically, it was based on a trainer design that the services had rejected.

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Pennsylvania To Beef Up Six Airports

Rendell Administration Delivers $4 Million in State Funds

Pennsylvania Transportation Secretary Allen G. Biehler today announced that $4 million in state aviation development grants have been awarded to six Pennsylvania airports. "Safe and well-maintained airports are the hallmark of our efforts to support aviation in the Commonwealth," Biehler said. "These grants will be used for a variety of projects, including land acquisition, environmental and airport-development planning, runway and taxiway improvements, security and lighting."

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FedEx: More Routes To China, Please

Cargo Carrier Wants 18 New Flights To People's Republic

If FedEx has its way, it'll soon add 18 weekly cargo flights from the US to China under a new air agreement between the two countries.

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Aero-Views: TSA Needs to Clean House

The Most Mismanaged Agency Or Department In The United States Government Has Done It Again

By ANN Correspondent Kevin O'Brien

Maybe you've never heard of W. Stephen Thayer III. But prosecutors and criminal defense attorneys in his home state of New Hampshire have. In the topsy-turvy world of inverted ethics that is the TSA, this qualifies him for his position: Deputy Chief of the TSA's Office of National Risk Assessment. In this position, he has run the beleaguered CAPPS II air passenger data mining project. This project has been under fire for, among other things, reckless and irresponsible treatment of passengers' sensitive personal data. Just where you want someone with Thayer's record -- not.

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No Camera? No Film? No Problem!

If you are coming to AirVenture 2004 but forgot to bring your camera, don't fret. Just head over to the Canon Imaging Products shack next to the Media Center, behind the old control tower.

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Not Just On Time -- Way Ahead Of Schedule

Northrop Grumman Again Beats Delivery Schedule On Navy EA-6B Prowler Aircraft Components

Northrop Grumman Corporation this week delivered the 75th EA-6B Prowler aircraft wing center section to the US. Navy five months ahead of schedule. The delivery is a milestone in the Navy's plan to replace wing center sections on its fleet of high-demand, carrier-based electronic attack aircraft to ensure their availability to support the nation's global war on terrorism.

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Aero-News Quote Of The Day (07.31.04)

"Aviation has been a very important part of my life. I didn't come to it until late in life, but nothing has given me as much satisfaction or brought me as much renewed intellectual interest as the business of learning to fly and continuing to build on the skills that flying requires." Source: Actor Harrison Ford, who stepped up at this week's AirVenture 2004 to become the chairman of the EAA's Young Eagles Program. Ford is an IFR rated, seaplane qualified pilot who owns several aircraft and has, himself, contributed to reaching the organization's goal of introducing more than a million kids to aviation between 1992 and the Wright Centennial in 2003.

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