AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot--Vol. 3, Issue 18

May 4, 2001


Departments


Inside AOPA


On Capitol Hill


Airport Support Network


Quiz Me!


2001 Bonanza
Sweepstakes


ePilot Calendar


Weekend Weather


[RNW]


Cirrus to develop turbo-diesel aircraft
New owner to restart Glasair kit production
Pilot nears completion of round-the-world flight
AOPA monitors Cessna fuel tank concerns
Volume 3, Issue 18
May 4, 2001
GA News
SUA INFORMATION NOW ON AOPA ONLINE
Ever try to find out while planning a flight if special-use airspace (SUA) will be active? Updated scheduling information on military use of restricted areas and other SUA now available on AOPA Online makes that effort easier, thanks to a collaborative effort between AOPA and the FAA. Information on the status of warning areas, restricted areas, military operations areas, and other airspace is updated every six minutes; military training route data is not provided. See AOPA Online. Melissa Bailey, AOPA vice president of air traffic services, has for several years pursued more timely information on use of military airspace. She notes that the information is intended to be used as a flight planning supplement and should not replace contacting the appropriate AFSS or control facility. The service is currently in a 90-day operational live test, and the FAA wants your feedback on the usefulness of the data and its presentation. E-mail comments to sua@aopa.org.

CIRRUS DESIGN TO DEVELOP TURBO-DIESEL AIRCRAFT
Cirrus Design Corporation and SMA, Societe de Motorisation Aeronautiques, a European company developing a diesel engine for small aircraft, announced at a German airshow last week that Cirrus will place an SMA diesel engine on a future SR-series aircraft. The engine uses Jet A fuel, which is less expensive and more widely available than avgas. The four-seat aircraft will be a derivative of the new Cirrus SR22 and is tentatively dubbed the SR21tdi. Cirrus President Alan Klapmeier said the SR21tdi would initially be developed for European customers. Although specifications are not complete, Cirrus has a performance goal of 170 knots at 12,000 feet--and has begun accepting production reservations for the diesel-equipped aircraft. SMA was created four years ago by Aerospatiale and Renault for the development and sales of a range of piston aircraft engines.

PILOT NEARS COMPLETION OF ROUND-THE-WORLD FLIGHT
On Monday, British aviatrix Polly Vacher landed at Montgomery County Airpark in Gaithersburg, Maryland, one of her last U.S. stops during a record-attempt circumnavigation flight. Vacher, an instrument-rated commercial pilot from Oxon, England, is conducting the solo flight in her Piper Dakota in order to help fund a scholarship program for disabled pilots. The program, the Royal International Air Tattoo Flying for the Disabled, endows scholarships enabling disabled persons “in the rehabilitation stage to find the intellectual and physical challenge of learning to fly,” said Vacher. So far, approximately $42,000 has been raised for the fund. Today Vacher is scheduled to fly to Hartford, Connecticut, and Boston before crossing the Atlantic. She expects to arrive in Birmingham, England, on May 14. If her flight is successful, Vacher will be the only woman to have completed a solo, around-the-world flight in such a small aircraft. Pilots can experience the flight through Vacher’s diary on her Web site.

NEW OWNER TO RESTART GLASAIR KIT PRODUCTION
After months of legal debate in federal bankruptcy court, a new buyer emerged to take over the assets of the highly successful Glasair kitplane line. New Glasair LLC closed the deal on April 18. The new owner, Thomas W. Wathen, who will also serve as CEO of New Glasair, plans to restart production and provide customer service as soon as possible, said his attorney, John D. Lyon. Wathen is the founder and president of The Thomas W. Wathen Foundation, which is devoted to aviation-related education. Last year the foundation bought historic Flabob Airport in Riverside, California.

BE A PILOT OFFERS $10,000 PRIZE TO FLIGHT SCHOOLS
An unusual cash prize is being offered to flight schools by the Be A Pilot program. Try $10,000. It will go to the flight school that documents the best local marketing outreach effort. To compete for the prize, a school must be a Be A Pilot participating flight school in good standing and comply with other rules. Materials will be mailed to all 1,600 Be A Pilot flight schools by early June. The entry deadline is September 1, 2001. For more information or to enroll a flight school, e-mail Aubrey Abdo or call 202/637-1382.

For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.

Inside AOPA
AOPA MONITORS CESSNA FUEL TANK CONCERNS
AOPA will continue to monitor the progress of an FAA and Cessna investigation into possible problems with the fuel tanks of some Cessna single-engine models, most recently reported in a front-page article in “The Wall Street Journal.” The article cited reports of difficult-to-drain water contamination in some late-model Cessna single-engine airplanes with integral fuel tanks, particularly the Cessna 172P, R, and S models. “Although these aircraft have excellent safety records, we’re watching this investigation carefully,” said AOPA President Phil Boyer. “And, as AOPA does with all FAA findings that could result in safety and/or cost implications for our members, we’ll take an active role in disseminating the information and insisting that the recommended cure is justified by the findings.” See AOPA Online.

FAA CONCURS WITH AOPA ON SB COMPLIANCE
In response to AOPA’s concern over the “mandatory” nature of some manufacturers’ service bulletins (SBs), the FAA in a letter to AOPA concurred that compliance with SBs is not mandatory for non-air carrier aircraft owners and operators unless specifically mandated by an AD. In essence, the letter cited internal FAA policy guidance stating that a small airplane design approval holder cannot unilaterally impose mandatory compliance of a manufacturer’s SB without FAA involvement. To download more information, see AOPA Online.

AOPA TO CHALLENGE PART OF AIR TOUR PLAN
To prevent the establishment of a precedent that could affect general aviation pilots, AOPA will challenge the 5,000-foot agl “triggering altitude” contained in the proposed National Parks Air Tour Plan that applies to commercial air tour operators. AOPA is concerned that the triggering altitude could be used in the future to justify restrictions against GA overflights. AOPA will be filing comments opposing the triggering altitude. The FAA has just published the proposed rule for public comment. See AOPA Online.

AOPA REPORTS MEMBERS’ INPUT ON PILOT RECORDS ACT
In response to a U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) periodic review of the Pilot Records Improvement Act (PRIA), AOPA sent a letter to the GAO outlining AOPA member complaints and suggestions for improving the act based on those complaints. AOPA told the GAO that many members felt that they were excluded from air carrier jobs based on the complaints cited in the letter. For more, see AOPA Online.

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On Capitol Hill
AOPA PRESIDENT WEIGHS IN ON PERU SHOOTDOWN
AOPA President Phil Boyer again condemned the use of deadly force against civilian aircraft in testimony he submitted before a House subcommittee Tuesday. “This tragic situation was predicted by our organization in 1994 when we opposed the U.S. plan to furnish radar tracking and targeting information to South American governments to be used to intercept and shoot down drug smugglers,” Boyer stated. AOPA was concerned that innocent civil aircraft would be misidentified. At the hearing, Criminal Justice, Drug Policy and Human Resources subcommittee Chairman Mark Souder (R-Ind.) expressed that while the current policy needs to undergo a reevaluation, interdiction efforts should not be suspended just because risk is involved. For more Capitol Hill news, see AOPA Online.

Airport Support Network
VOLUNTEER OF THE WEEK—HARPER POLING
Airport Support Network volunteer Harper Poling of Aurora State Airport (UAO) in Oregon has worked extensively with pilots and airport businesses over certain issues included in the Commercial Minimum Standards proposed by the state. They have gained the Oregon State Aviation Board’s attention and continue to work toward the resolution of reasonable standards that will work at their particular airport.

To learn more about the Airport Support Network, visit AOPA Online.
Quiz Me!
Here’s a question asked by an AOPA member last week of our AOPA technical specialists. Test your knowledge.

Question: What does TSO stand for and exactly what is it?

Answer: TSOs, or Technical Standard Orders, are developed and issued by the FAA and contain minimum performance standards for specified materials, parts, processes, and appliances used on civil aircraft. For more, see AOPA Online.

Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? Call 800/872-2672 or e-mail to inforequest@aopa.org. Send comments on our Quiz Me! questions to epilot@aopa.org.
AOPA Sweepstakes Bonanza Update
bonanza logoSWEEPS BONANZA PROJECT CONTINUES
The effort to turn the 2001 AOPA Sweepstakes Bonanza into a cross-country rocket continues at a shop in West Chicago, Illinois. Read about the latest on AOPA Online.
What's New At AOPA Online
CHECK OUT THE AOPA EXPO 2001 BROCHURE
The brochure for the action-packed, better-than-ever AOPA Expo 2001, November 8 through 10, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is now available on AOPA Online. See AOPA Online or call 888/GO-2-EXPO.
ePilot Calendar
WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS
WASHINGTON, D.C. The American Helicopter Society (AHS) presents its annual forum and technology display at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel May 9 through 11. Call 703/684-6777 for event information, or visit the Web site

LA GRANGE, TEXAS. The Fayette County Airshow takes place May 11 and 12 at Fayette Regional Air Center (3T5). Call 409/242-4056 for event information, or visit the Web site

LANGLEY, VIRGINIA. “Air Power Over Hampton Roads” takes place at Langley Air Force Base May 12 and 13. Call 757/764-2483 for event information.

MILLINGTON, TENNESSEE. The Mid-South Airshow takes place at Millington Municipal Airport (NQA) May 12 and 13. Call 901/756-5404 for event information .

For more airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online . For more events, see Aviation Calendar of Events

UPCOMING AOPA EVENTS
Frederick, Maryland. The eleventh annual AOPA Fly-In and Open House will take place June 2, 2001 at AOPA headquarters.

ASF FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Albany, New York, and Portland, Oregon, May 12 and 13. For the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule, see AOPA Online.

ASF PINCH-HITTER GROUND-SCHOOL COURSES
(Pinch-Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitter(R) Ground School will take place May 13 in Albany, New York. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.

For comments on calendar items or to make submissions, contact Julie S. Walker at julie.walker@aopa.org.

Contacting ePilot
Got news tips? Contact ePilot editor Nathan A. Ferguson at nate.ferguson@aopa.org. Having difficulty using this service? Visit the ePilot Frequently Asked Questions now at AOPA Online or write to epilot@aopa.org.


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AOPA, 421 Aviation Way, Frederick, MD 21701 • Tel: 800/USA-AOPA or 301/695-2000
Copyright � 2001. Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.


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