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January 27, 2004

Power-Line Strike Ends Birthday Flight

Child Unhurt, But Spooked

Birthdays are normally a time of celebration, especially for kids. However, one youngster ended his birthday on a sour note over the weekend. The child was invited to fly in an Aeronca (file photo) for his seventh birthday but soon found himself fighting to get out of the aircraft, after the plane clipped a power line and crashed onto an icy lake near Pine Lake (MI) on Saturday. Fortunately, the child was unhurt, but the pilot, Frank Blink, 56, of Allegan, was taken to Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo with non-life threatening injuries. Police reports indicate Blink was practicing touch-and-go landings on the frozen Pine Lake about 1:45 p.m. when the plane apparently struck a power line and nose-dived onto the ice. Police said G

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Politicians Want Buchanan Airport Open

Leaders Oppose Developer's Plans

Here's a twist: Some politicians are fighting to save their local airport. Two San Francisco-area congressional leaders Friday urged federal aviation officials not to close Concord's Buchanan Field (CA). Reps. George Miller, D-Martinez, and Ellen Tauscher, D-Alamo, sent a joint letter to the FAA opposing a proposal to replace the airport with a mixed-use development. In December, county supervisors decided to seek proposals for alternate uses of the airport. The board needs FAA approval before shutting the facility. However, that won't be easy, as the county must keep the airport open for at least 19 more years under the terms of a $1.9 million federal grant it received last year. Nevertheless, area pilots fear the devel

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Fly Virtual; Get Real Credit

FAA Grants Additional Credit For Elite PI-135 PCATD

The FAA has authorized use of the model PI-135 PCATD with the AP-3000 digital radio to satisfy regulatory requirements under 14 CFR Parts 61 and 141. Specifically, in addition to the 10 hours of instructional use already sanctioned on these systems, the PI-135 can now be used to perform the approaches, holding procedures, and intercepting/tracking required under section 61.57(c)(1) for recent instrument experience (instrument currency). The devices can also be used to log 2.5 hours toward the Private Pilot License as described under section 61.109(i)(1). The FAA has recently removed the “PC” from PCATD changing the nomenclature slightly. PCATDs now come in two varieties and are referred to simply as either

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AOPA Sees Double

First-ever Twin-engine Restoration Project

How could AOPA top its 2003 sweepstakes involving a beautiful, classic  Waco biplane? Well, it seems they are intent on "doubling" their efforts. The association's 2004 grand prize winner is going to fly away in a fully refurbished twin-engine aircraft. Not too shabby, huh? The PA-30 Twin Comanche is powered by a pair of 160-hp Lycoming IO-320B engines — the same engines that power the likes of Piper's Super Cub and Tri-Pacer or Cessna's Skyhawk. A standard Twin Comanche can carry more than 850 pounds of payload for nearly five hours (without reserve) on a single fill-up. AOPA's Sweepstakes aircraft will be anything but standard, though. Anyone who joins or renews membership in AOPA between January 1, 2004,

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Naples Airport Authority, DOJ Go Toe-To-Toe

Battle Brewing Over Stage 2 Jet Ban

The Naples Airport Authority is used to fighting it out in the name of its Stage 2 jet ban, but this time around, a new foe may give the city a run for its money. This time, the authority's lawyers will be facing attorneys from U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) in Washington, D.C. The Airport Authority has filed an appeal in the U.S. Court of Appeals District of Columbia Circuit, disagreeing with the FAA's decision this past summer. After an administrative hearing, the agency determined the authority's decision to ban certain jets from Naples Municipal Airport violates federal law. The FAA also declared the authority's prohibition was "unreasonable" and in violation of a federal law that describes the criteria used to determine which

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Boeing Ponders Selling Wichita Plant

SPEEA Is Ready To Fight

A planning report uncovered by the Seattle Times claims Boeing is considering selling its 75-year-old manufacturing plant in Wichita (KS), as part of a long-term shift to building aircraft while eliminating its components work. Citing an internal strategic-planning document obtained from a company insider, The Seattle Times reported in Sunday's edition that Boeing's main portion of the aircraft-manufacturing process -- the beginning and the end -- are expected to be centered in Everett, Wash., where final assembly of the 7E7 Dreamliner is planned. The document also confirms that Boeing one day anticipates closing its Renton (WA) plant, although the timing of this move was not clear. Alan Mulally, CEO of Boeing Commercial Airp

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Airbus Knocks Boeing Out Of UK Tanker Bid

British Go With European Proposal

How much worse could things get for the beleaguered Boeing? In one word: devastating. Over the last couple of years, the aerospace giant has taken a beating from its arch rival, Airbus, in the commercial aircraft market. Now, the European-conglomerate is giving Boeing another devastating blow to its pocketbook, as its wins a huge deal for a fleet of British air tankers. The United Kingdom announced European Aerospace Defence & Space (EADS) as the winner of a $24 billion contract to supply air-refueling tankers to the British Royal Air Force. On Monday, Britain's Ministry of Defense named Airbus's parent company the winner in a written statement to Parliament and in meetings with the competing consortium led by Boeing and EA

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Emergency AD: EMBRAER Model EMB-135 and -145 Series

AD #: 2004-02-51 ATT: All owners and operators of all Empresa Brasileira de Aeronautica S.A. (EMBRAER) Model EMB-135 and -145 series airplanes.

The FAA has received a report that the flightcrew of an EMBRAER Model EMB-135 series airplane experienced rudder control difficulties during takeoff. The airplane made an emergency landing; no injuries were reported. Investigation revealed that the upper and lower control rods for the aft rudder section had failed. (The rudder is composed of a forward and an aft section.) The National Transportation Safety Board is currently investigating the cause of the control rod failure. The airplane on which the incident occurred had accumulated 6,804 total flight hours and 6,371 total flight cycles. Although the effect is unk

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SSI Announces Helicopter Security Training

Anti-Terrorism; Emergency Preparedness Emphasized

As many regions in the world experience an ongoing terrorist threat, new companies are emerging to help corporate flight departments secure their assets and personnel. ANN recently had the chance to talk with the key management personnel from Security Solutions International, a Miami-based firm specializing in aviation security training. Carving out its own niche in the security industry, the company just announced it is first in the world to offer courses for helicopter crews in emergency preparedness and counter-terrorism. Among other topics, the courses focus on: Aircrew teams dealing with cases of terrorist attacks; Neutralizing security situations at an early stage; and Dealing with events concerning abuse of alcoh

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F35 Completes First Simulated Flight With New Coding

Simulink(R) Generated Code Powers New Simulation

The MathWorks and Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company announced on Monday that their collaborative work has led to the successful completion of the first simulated test flight of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) using Simulink(R) generated code. Lockheed Martin's Chief Test Pilot, Jon Beesley, conducted an unrestricted evaluation flight in the F-35 real-time simulator lasting over two hours, performing a wide range of maneuvers. He exercised the sophisticated flight control laws designed and generated by Lockheed Martin's JSF Flight Control Application Software team using MATLAB(R), Simulink, Stateflow(R), and Real-Time Workshop(R) Embedded Coder from The MathWorks. The F-35 is considered the single most important new

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Gear Up/Gear Down... Which Is It?

Repeat after me... ANY retractable gear abnormality means that SEVERE caution must be employed until the bird is under the care of an A&P. Apparently, a ground observer was asked to check the gear, so the pilot may have had this in mind, but I can't emphasize strongly enough that ANY abnormality... weird noises, slow gear cycling, bulbs not illuminated properly, or just plain bad vibes, should be treated like the emergency it may become--otherwise you may need full power to taxi back to the ramp (grin). DESCRIPTION ACFT DEPARTED, PILOT PLACED GEAR SELECTOR IN THE UP POSITION, GEAR DID NOT RETRACT. PILOT RETURNED GEAR SELECTOR TO DOWN POSITION AND MADE SEVERAL PASSES. GROUND OBSERVER REPORTED GEAR APPEARED TO BE DOWN. ACFT LANDED AND GEAR COLLAPSED.

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Scientists 'Disappointed' Over Bungled Beagle

ESA Prepares To Bid Adieu

No contact has been made with the Beagle 2 lander, despite repeated efforts over the last few days to communicate via the Mars Express and Mars Odyssey spacecraft and the Jodrell Bank radio telescope in Cheshire, UK. At a press briefing in London on Monday afternoon, members of the Beagle 2 team described the latest efforts to contact their missing lander. "We haven't found Beagle 2, despite three days of intensive searching," said Professor Colin Pillinger, lead scientist for Beagle 2. "Under those circumstances, we have to begin to accept that, if Beagle 2 is on the Martian surface, it is not active. Detailing the efforts to contact Beagle 2 in recent days, Mark Sims, Beagle 2 Mission Manager from the University of Leicester, explain

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Happy Birthday EAA!

Organization Celebrates 51st Anniversary

On Monday, the EAA celebrated its 51st anniversary, recalling its first meeting in a wintry night in Milwaukee, Wis., in 1953.  The organization says its success would not be possible without the support and involvement of its hundreds of thousands of members through the years, and the 170,000 aviation enthusiasts who are current EAA members.  EAA had its start next to a half-built airplane in a garage in the Milwaukee area.  In the years after World War II, Paul Poberezny was continually working on airplane projects in his garage.  While he was in the process of rebuilding an old Taylorcraft, former members of the defunct Milwaukee Lightplane Club stopped by to help or just visit.  The ga

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Comair Pays $3,000 For Light Bulb

FAA Proposes $44,000 Fine

FAA investigators claim to have compiled an inch-thick file on a 1999 complaint about a burned-out bulb in a "no smoking, fasten seat belt" sign onboard a Comair jet. The accumulating paper shuffle ended only after the airline paid a $3,000 fine to settle the complaint, the Gannett News Service reported on Monday. The hearing in Federal Aviation Administration v. Comair was to start Thursday; four years after the case began. The agency's beef against Comair: A burnt-out light bulb, worth 77 cents, in a no smoking-fasten seat belt sign. The FAA's proposed fine: $44,000. According to documents obtained in a Freedom of Information Act request by Gannett, the problem started Sept. 17, 1999, on a flight from Long Island to Cincinnati. An of

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E-2 Test Pilot Honored

Over 6000 Flight Hours in Hawkeye

Robert Jackson, a test pilot at test squadron VX-20, was recently honored by NAVAIR’s E-2/C-2 Program office and the Northrop-Grumman Corporation for having achieved 6,000 flight hours in the E-2C Hawkeye aircraft. Jackson, an employee of Advanced Information Engineering Services, is only the second pilot to have reached this milestone since the E-2C was put into service in 1973. In recognition of Jackson’s achievement a unique wood and bronze plaque, with a small relief sculpture of an E-2C, was presented to him by E-2/C-2 Program Manager (PMA231) Captain Robert LaBelle and Mr. Julius Longshore of Northrop Grumman. Jackson logged his record number of hours over the past twenty plus years flying active duty missions

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BAE Systems Bags Two FAA Support Contracts

Deal Exceedes $100 Million

BAE Systems has been awarded two contracts totaling $107 million by the FAA to provide a variety of support services for the FAA's acquisition programs in the surveillance systems area. BAE Systems received a $67 million contract to provide systems engineering and implementation support services and a $40 million contract to provide management and financial support services to the agency. Both five-year contracts have performance periods that will last through the end of 2008. The contracting agency, the FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center in Atlantic City, N.J., awarded the contracts under its Multiple Area Support Service, Engineering Support Service Area contract vehicle. BAE Systems Technology Solutions will continue to provide

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Wetzel Aviation Launched At Centennial Airport

There's a new aircraft sales outfit at Centennial Airport (in Englewood, CO)... The folks at Wetzel Aviation tell ANN that while they are technically a newly incorporated company, that they can hardly be classified as a startup. The company, whose staff has extensive experience in many aspects of business aviation, recently began operations, buying and selling turboprop and jet aircraft. Jack Wetzel, Chairman and CEO, is a recognized expert in the industry with more than 30 years selling most airplane models manufactured today. Gene F. Langfeldt, President, has more than 30 years of financial and executive management, of which the last 15 years have been in business aviation.

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Aero-News Quote Of The Day (01.27.04)

"For more than 50 years, EAA has represented the individual who wants to discover and explore aviation.  As individuals bonded by this common passion, EAA has been able to provide the support needed to fulfill thousands of dreams of flight.  It is that vision that will continue to carry us into the future."

Source: EAA President Tom Poberezny commenting on the organization's anniversary celebrating 51 years of service to the aviation community. The milestone was reached on Monday, January 26, 2004.

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Upgrade: Executive Jet Management Promotes Amanda North

Is New Regional VP Of Charter Services

Executive Jet Management (EJM), the leading provider of aircraft management and charter services worldwide, has named Amanda North a regional vice president of Charter Services.  She will be responsible for sales in the western United States, including the Mountain states. In her new position, North will handle charter sales in Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.  Her office is in San Jose (CA) at the San Jose Jet Center (tel. 408-513-4833). North's career has spanned 20 years in a range of executive strategy, marketing and business development roles for aviation and high tech companies.  Prior to joining Executive Jet Management, she served

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