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AOPA Online Members Only -- -- AOPA ePilot Volume 2, Issue 15AOPA Online Members Only -- -- AOPA ePilot Volume 2, Issue 15


Inside AOPA

On Capitol Hill

Airport Support Network

Quiz Me!

Picture of the day

The Road to Expo

ePilot Calendar

Weekend Weather

Honeywell launches GA into the future
Micco Aircraft to install UPSAT avionics
Cessna to build additional Millennium editions
New weather system sees, predicts worst hazards
Volume 2, Issue 15
April 14, 2000
GA News
Bruce Bohannon, who holds the world C-1b climb record to 3,000 meters (approximately 10,000 feet), failed in his second attempt at the 6,000-meter record during the Sun 'n Fun EAA Fly-In on Tuesday when his "Exxon Flyin' Tiger" aircraft experienced a catastropic engine failure while climbing through 10,000 feet. Bohannon took off from Florida's Lakeland Linder Regional Airport at 11 a.m. and injected nitrous oxide into the engine during the entire climb, to boost engine performance. He heard the engine hiccup at 8,000 feet. "I chose to ignore it and go on," Bohannon said. He said that at 10,000 feet he was four seconds ahead of the climb profile he needed to set the record--then the Mattituck-Lycoming IO-540 engine failed catastrophically, spraying the windshield with oil. "That was pretty much the end of that run," said Bohannon, who declared an emergency and returned to Lakeland, where he made a successful deadstick landing on the runway. Bohannon, who first attempted the 6,000-meter record at the Copperstate Fly-In in Phoenix last October, plans to try again this year during Oshkosh .


Lancair has introduced a new turbocharged version of its Columbia 300 fixed-gear, certified single. The new Columbia 400 will be equipped with a Continental TSIO-550 engine. Speeds are expected to be around 220 KTAS at Flight Level 180, and 240 KTAS at FL 240. The price has not been set, but is expected to fall in the range of $360,000 to $380,000. The prototype should be available for display at EAA AirVenture 2000 this summer. In other news, Lancair said it now has 110 orders for the Lancair 300. For more information, visit the Web or call 541/318-1144.

All year long AOPA Pilot has told you through its "Future Flight" series about how you’ll fly in coming years. Honeywell, in an announcement made last week, appears to be saying, "Why wait?" The new Bendix/King Integrated Hazardous Avoidance System (IHAS) is targeted at piston and light-turbine aircraft. The IHAS 1000 will display weather, terrain from an onboard database, traffic, position, and other flight information. The building-block system uses the KMD 150 flat-panel multifunction display as its centerpiece. A KDR 110 datalink transceiver allows pilots to communicate with a ground communications center for weather and other services similar to Cadillac's OnStar system for road travelers. Through the so-called WingMan datalink, pilots can conduct flight planning and filing, fuel planning, see real-time weather, send two-way messages over the Internet, and receive other safety, aviation, and commercial services. The IHAS 1000 uses the KT 73 Mode S datalink transponder to display traffic information the same way that TCAS I does. How much will it cost for all of this technology? Pricing hasn't been finalized but expect to pay a little more than $10,000 plus monthly service charges for database and WingMan messaging services. For more information, see the Bendix/King Web site.


ExxonMobil introduced a new piston aviation oil at the Sun 'n Fun EAA Fly-In in Lakeland, Florida. Exxon Aviation Oil Elite is semi-synthetic, ashless-dispersant 20W-50 viscosity oil that contains the anti-wear/anti-scuffing additive required for certain Lycoming engines. ExxonMobil is promoting Elite by sponsoring the "Exxon Flyin' Tiger," a highly modified Van's RV that broke the 3,000-meter time-to-climb record at last year's EAA AirVenture Fly-In at Oshkosh. FBOs may order the new Elite after June 1 by calling 888/228-4437; select option 9.

The recently certified 200-hp Micco SP20 and its new higher-powered stablemate, the 260-hp SP26, will now be equipped with a standard Apollo avionics package from UPS Aviation Technologies. (Micco had previously contracted with Honeywell to install the Bendix/King Silver Crown Plus line of avionics.) The VFR package for the Micco airplanes will include the UPSAT Apollo GX65 VFR GPS/com and SL-70 transponder. The IFR package swaps the GX65 for an IFR approach-approved GX60 GPS/com and an SL30 nav/com. The Apollo MX20 multifunction display is optional in both packages. Micco has 34 orders for the SP20; the SP26 is in the flight-test stage. Company President Dewitt Beckett believes that the SP26 will begin deliveries in August. Aerobatic certification will come later and will be retroactive for airplanes sold prior to that time. Price for the SP26 will be $199,500 for the VFR version and $225,000 for the IFR version. For more information, see the UPSAT Web site.


Cessna plans to build more Millennium Edition single-engine aircraft thanks to high demand for the specially equipped Skyhawk SPs, Skylanes, Stationairs, and Turbo Stationairs. The decision to build more of the commemorative aircraft came as a result of rapidly growing waiting lists, according to Pat Boyarski, vice president and general manager of Cessna's single-engine aircraft division. The Millennium Edition aircraft include such features as a redesigned interior with leather seats, floor mats embossed with the Millennium logo, Rosen sun visors, and the Honeywell Bendix/King KLN94 IFR GPS system. On the outside, the Millennium Edition aircraft sport a distinctive paint scheme, a polished spinner, stainless steel cowl fasteners, and Goodyear Flight Custom II tires. In other Cessna news, the company has delivered the first Citation CJ1. The CJ1 offers a 200-pound gross-weight increase over the CitationJet and comes with a new Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 avionics suite.

Cessna Aircraft Co. has launched a new Web site for prospective pilots. The site focuses on learning to fly and features information on flight-training financing available from Sallie Mae. It also provides detailed information on what is involved in becoming a pilot. Aspiring pilots can print out a coupon for a $35 discovery flight valid at any Cessna Pilot Center (CPC). The site allows users to search for the closest CPCs.

We're in the middle of a revolution in airport weather detection systems, thanks to the MIT Lincoln Laboratory, Raytheon, and the FAA. A new system that detects and predicts movement of thunderstorms, tornadoes, and gust fronts (microbursts) 10 and 20 minutes into the future is about to be deployed. Known as the Integrated Terminal Weather System, the systems will be installed in Houston and Kansas City in September, and then be implemented at three major airports a month. (Prototypes have been operating in Orlando, Memphis, Dallas, and the New York area.) The FAA has funding for only 43 major airports, said Darin R. Meyer, an MIT Lincoln Laboratory staff assistant who is based in Orlando. Medium-size airports that do not have a terminal weather radar on the airport will get a system that is based on Nexrad weather radar data. A test system will be installed at Memphis this summer, and in Jackson, Mississippi, in the fall. It is expected some 90 medium-sized airports will get the system. But what about the smaller general aviation airports? Those GA airports located near one of the advanced systems may be able to get the displays in their FBOs, along with a "cheat sheet" explaining how to interpret special markings on the radar-like display. Orlando Executive Airport is expected to be the first to borrow data from a nearby major airport for display.

For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.

Inside AOPA
AOPA met recently with FAA officials to seek changes to the charity sightseeing-flight drug-testing exemption granted the association February 2. AOPA had earlier told FAA "thanks, but no thanks" because the exemption imposed too many conditions. On behalf of its member-pilots, AOPA has sent a letter of Petition for Clarification and Modification to the original exemption. Considering the rapidly approaching summer flying season, the FAA has agreed to expedite its action on AOPA’s petition. In the meantime, AOPA has prepared guidance for any member seeking an "individual" drug/alcohol testing exemption from the FAA. For a copy of AOPA's request for clarification and instructions on how to submit your petition for exemption, visit AOPA online or call the AOPA Pilot Information Center (800/USA-AOPA) for more information.

On Capitol Hill
On April 5, President Clinton signed into law the Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment and Reform Act (AIR-21). At the signing ceremony, attended by only a few key lawmakers, the President expressed his concerns stating "…we have yet to achieve fundamental structural reform of the FAA." In addition, Clinton attacked the very essence of the bill, the return of the trust fund's first priority--system modernization and airport improvements. "The bill mandates unnecessarily large increases for FAA capital spending under the budget caps, thereby making it more difficult to fund other discretionary programs, especially transportation programs such as FAA operations, Amtrak, and the Coast Guard," said Clinton. Signaling his intention to perhaps undermine AIR-21, the president stated, "My administration will work with Congress to achieve more balanced funding of aviation programs in Fiscal Year 2001."

AOPA President Phil Boyer told Congress last week that backcountry airstrips must be preserved. Testifying in support of the General Aviation Access Act (H.R. 3661), Boyer said the remote dirt, gravel, or grass airstrips play an essential role as emergency landing areas for single-engine piston aircraft, especially in mountainous areas of the western United States. The bill, developed by AOPA, would require federal land managers to consult with state aviation officials and local pilots before temporarily or permanently closing an airstrip. It would also establish a nationwide policy for governing airstrips on federal land. The bill was introduced on February 15 by pilot and AOPA member Jim Hansen (R-Utah), with 15 cosponsors. AOPA members are urged to write to their representatives asking them to cosponsor H.R. 3661.

Airport Support Network
Gordon Feingold is the Airport Support Network volunteer for Santa Barbara Municipal Airport, California. Upon learning the local cable access channel was producing a "news magazine" about airport noise, Feingold contacted the producer and arranged to provide him with information and details to be included in the program. Feingold also took the host up for a flight to demonstrate noise abatement flight paths and procedures at Santa Barbara. His efforts help ensure that correct information is reported to the public.

Click here to learn more about the Airport Support Network.

Quiz me!
Here’s a question asked by an AOPA member last week of our AOPA technical specialists. Test your knowledge.

Question: The transponder must be checked every two years. Does it have to be checked in the airplane with the pitot system if you plan on flying IFR? What about VFR? Can VFR-only pilots just take the transponder out and have it tested in the shop?
Answer: Your encoder and transponder are two separate pieces of equipment, and therefore are covered under two different regulations. The regulations are 14 CFR 91.411 and 91.413. Regulation 14 CFR 91.411 begins by stating, "No person may operate an airplane or helicopter in controlled airspace under IFR unless- (1) within the preceding 24 calendar months, each static pressure system, each altimeter instrument, and each automatic pressure altitude reporting system has been tested and inspected." This is the answer to part of your question; only your altitude encoder needs to be inspected for IFR operations in controlled airspace.
Regulation 91.413 answers the second part of your question. "No person may use an ATC transponder that is specified in 91.215(a), 121.345(c), 127.123(b), or 135.143(c) of this chapter unless, within the preceding 24 calendar months, the ATC transponder has been tested and inspected…" Notice here that no mention is made of IFR or VFR, so we must assume that the FAA means all operations where a transponder is required.

Got a technical question? Call our technical specialists at 800/872-2672 or e-mail to [email protected]. Send comments on our Quiz Me! questions to [email protected].

Picture of the day
Jump to the AOPA Online Gallery to see the featured airplane of the day. Click on the link for details on how to capture wallpaper for your work area. Visit the AOPA Online Gallery.

On the Road to Expo
From time to time we'll inform you in this space of our preparations for AOPA Expo taking place in Long Beach, California, October 20 through 22. A significant step along the road to Expo just occurred. As you know, thousands of aviation and related products are exhibited each year. Now you can find out what you'll see by reviewing the latest list of exhibitors .

ePilot Calendar
Louisville, Kentucky. The World Class Thunder Airshow opens the Kentucky Derby Festival on April 15. Military and aerobatic airplanes, parachutists, helicopters, and skydivers are featured. Bowman Field (LOU), 502/368-6524; Louisville International (SDF), 502/368-6524; and Clark County Airport (JVY) in Jeffersonville, Indiana, 812/246-7460, serve the area. Call 502/584-6383 or visit the Web site for information.

Laughlin, Nevada. Motorcycle enthusiasts gather for the Laughlin Run, billed as the world's largest motorcycle event in the United States, April 26 through 30. Laughlin/Bullhead International (IFP), 520/754-2134, serves the area. Call 714/694-2800 for event information

Nantucket, Massachusetts. The island of Nantucket comes out of hibernation April 21 through 24 for the annual Daffodil Festival. Nantucket Memorial Airport (ACK), 508/325-5300, serves the area. Call 508/228-1700 for event information.


The AOPA Fly-In and Open House takes place at Frederick Municipal Airport (FDK), Maryland, on June 3. Visit the Web site.

AOPA Expo 2000 takes place in Long Beach, California, October 20 through 22. Visit the Web site .

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

(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are in Boston, Cincinnati, and Atlanta April 15 and 16. Clinics are scheduled in Salt Lake City and Reston, Virginia, April 29 and 30. For complete details, visit the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule.

(Pinch Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitter� Ground School will take place place April 15 and 16 in Atlanta, Georgia. For details and a complete schedule, see the Pinch Hitter Ground School Schedule.

Featuring AOPA President Phil Boyer
(7:30 p.m.; admission is free)
The next Pilot Town Meeting is in San Bernardino, California, May 15; Newport Beach, California, May 16; and Oxnard, California, May 17. Click for more information on Pilot Town Meetings.

Contacting ePilot
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