February 21, 2014
FEBRUARY 21, 2014 - VOL 16, ISSUE 8
A judge on Feb. 13 granted a motion from the Department of Justice and the FAA to dismiss the city of Santa Monica's lawsuit to release it from its obligation to operate Santa Monica Municipal Airport as an airport. But AOPA cautions that the fight to save the airport is far from over. Read more... Share:
The aircraft manufacturing industry continued on an upward trajectory in 2013, with increases in both billing and shipments. Industry leaders continue to use the words "cautious optimism," while one analyst said it's time to drop "cautious" and embrace "optimism." Recent legislative and coming regulatory changes are expected to help fuel the upswing in coming years. Read more... Share:
AOPA Live This Week
Cirrus Aircraft says it is weeks away from a major milestone in its Vision jet program, the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) lays out the state of the industry, and Garmin marks the 20-year anniversary of the beginning of a new era of navigation. AOPA Live reports from the Newseum in Washington, D.C., for AOPA Live This Week®, Feb. 20. Share:
Rusty pilots must be careful to base their planning on the skills they have now rather than those they had when they quit or expect to regain soon. On April 22, 2013, an 81-year-old commercial pilot with some 1,900 hours but little recent experience crashed on his third approach to his home airport ferrying an Alon A-2 home after a flight review. Read more in this special report from the Air Safety Institute. Share:
Readers helped explain that often you can fly an approach to one runway but circle to another for landing. (Are there exceptions? Yes.) Read more... Share:
Pilot Safety Announcement
Fly along with the Air Safety Institute's "iPanel" Pilot Safety Announcement (PSA), which takes a decidedly tongue-in-cheek look at the modern electronic cockpit's endless opportunities for distraction. Watch the video... Share:
One second in a Robinson R22 could mean the difference between life and death. It may sound melodramatic, but it's a fact. If the engine fails the pilot has 1.1 seconds to react. Read more... Share:
In the months since the AOPA Foundation's Air Safety Institute launched its new online flight instructor refresher course in July, flight instructors have expressed their appreciation for the eFIRC's course quality, convenience, and device compatibility. Read more... Share:
A fatal accident that involved a new pilot and an old Cessna 172 is in the news. The Cessna stalled after taking off with 40 degrees of flaps, and now a family member of one of the people killed in the crash has filed a lawsuit. Read more... Share:
When considering a new prescription, a pilot must answer several questions: Is it effective? Is it FAA-allowed? Is it affordable? Read more... Share:
Takeoff accidents present a challenge for avionics manufacturers: how to provide a reliable takeoff performance monitor that can identify a problem in time to abort a takeoff safely—and avoid nuisance alerts that could risk unnecessary high-speed rejected takeoffs? Read more... Share:
The FAA has approved autothrottles and anti-skid brakes on the Eclipse 550. The Albuquerque, N.M.-based manufacturer said the 550 is the first light jet equipped with autothrottles. It also noted that the 550's anti-skid braking system, the first in general aviation that does not require a complex aircraft hydraulic system, can be retrofitted on the existing fleet of Eclipse 500 aircraft. Read more... Share:
Even heavy-iron pilots can land at the wrong airport, as evidenced by some recent high-profile incidents. Opinion Leaders blogger Ron Rapp describes an incident he witnessed in 2008, when a Boeing 757 descended through an aerobatic box, landed at Marana Regional Airport in Arizona, and could not be roused on the radio until someone thought to try the frequency for nearby Pinal Airpark. Read more... Share:
For once in the airline world, something has arrived early: a pilot shortage. Opinion Leaders blogger Martin Rottler lays out the problem and urges the industry to address the "elephants in the room." Read more... Share:
Apps of the week
It's time for the randomizer, which has chosen five apps that can help pilots with tasks ranging from preflight calculations to filing pireps. Read more... Share:
AOPA is hosting fly-ins across the nation in 2014 where pilots can meet association leaders, attend seminars, shop for aviation products, and more. AOPA members, their spouses, and their children will receive a free lunch, which is $10 for nonmembers—but to prepare enough food, the association needs to hear from you. RSVP online for the events in Texas, Indiana, Massachusetts, Washington, California, and Georgia. You can also buy a ticket for a $5 pancake breakfast/pilot town hall. Find out more and reserve your free lunch... Share:
Members of the Skies Unlimited flying club have access to affordable aircraft and flight lessons. Read more... Share:
Should you have even a minor incident in your rented or borrowed airplane, you could be financially obligated to repair the damages. Read more... Share:
The movie Charlie Victor Romeo, a film version of the 1999 stage play by the same name, offers unflinching insight into aviation crisis, drawn entirely from the words of pilots and crews who confronted disaster in the sky. This unblinking authenticity has made an unusual piece of theater into a teaching tool for professional aviators, and others who must manage crises, to the surprise and delight of its creators. Read more... Share:
Best Aircraft Showdown
In 2013, pilots carried the Douglas DC-3 to victory in the Best Aircraft Showdown, a bracket contest that lets you pick pilots' favorite general aviation aircraft. What beloved aircraft will take the title this year? Don't let your favorite aircraft miss its chance: Nominate it now. Nominations will be accepted through Feb. 28. Then, get ready to vote as the first 16 matchups will be opened on March 18. Nominate an aircraft... Share:
How could social media attract new customers for flight schools? AOPA eNewsletters and Social Media Editor Benét Wilson will share ways to use social media to bring in students and help schools create a social media plan in a free webinar Feb. 25 at 8 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. Register now... Share:
A rigid (or sometimes called hingeless) rotor system is capable of transmitting high bending forces to the main rotor shaft. Read more... Share:
Thrush Aircraft, a manufacturer of aerial application aircraft based in Albany, Ga., has obtained Canadian type certification of its Thrush 510G turboprop. Read more... Share:
Who has the controls, smuggling via air, and stopped by a fence. Read more... Share:
If you are an experienced aviation engineer, Cub Crafters is looking for you. Responsibilities include managing engineering development projects; identifying airworthiness standards and determining means of compliance; conducting and/or supervising analyses and testing to demonstrate compliance; identifying new projects and reviewing designs; and supervising/mentoring engineering staff. See the full job description here.
AOPA career opportunities
Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? We're looking for an event planner, coordinator of pilot community and development, director of insurance business operations, and member services and airport directory representative. To learn more about other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.
On a VFR sectional chart, you see a star symbol next to the control tower frequency. What does that star symbol tell you?
The star symbol tells you that control tower operation is part-time only. (Source: Aeronautical Chart User's Guide, Page 9)
Got a question for our aviation services staff? The AOPA Pilot Information Center is a service available to all members as part of the annual dues. Contact AOPA.
Which are among the best short-field single-engine piston airplanes? Read more...
Feb 22-23 - Sacramento, Calif.
Mar 1-2 - Phoenix, Ariz.; Ontario, Calif.; and King of Prussia, Pa.
Mar 8-9 - Baltimore, Md.; and Orlando, Fla.
Mar 15-16 - San Mateo, Calif.; and Virginia Beach, Va.
For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the Air Safety Institute's new Online eFIRC.
Feb 24 - Ocala, Fla.
Feb 25 - Lakeland, Fla.
Feb 26 - Melbourne, Fla.
Feb 27 - Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.
AOPA's online photo gallery allows you to upload your own aviation photography as well as view, rate, and comment on others' photos. Take a look, and submit your own photos!
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Gary Russo, 800/543-1284
South Central and Western United States:
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Here are two reasonably priced airplanes that were donated to the AOPA Foundation that are for sale.
The Voters Decide campaign is making a pre-election push for a ballot measure to put the future of SMO into the hands of voters.
A New Zealand delegation came to AOPA headquarters recently to share ideas about ways a planned satellite-based air traffic control system can benefit general aviation pilots.
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