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| GA News |
| FRENCH COMPANY TO PRODUCE DIESEL ENGINE |
A French company has received Design Organization Approval in Europe for its SR 305 230-horsepower diesel engine that offers improved performance, longer TBO, and the ability to run on jet fuel. SMA, Societe de Motorisation Aeronautiques, created four years ago by Aerospatiale and Renault for the development and sales of a range of piston aircraft engines, plans to go into production soon. All of the testing has been completed. Following an administrative process, the company expects to have certification under the Joint Aviation Authorities (JAA) by the end of the month, said a company official. Through a reciprocal agreement, SMA also plans to receive FAA certification in the United States later this year. A price has not been announced. For more, see the Web site.
FAA CERTIFIES TURBO SKYLANE
It's official. Cessna completed certification of its turbocharged Skylane, the T182T, last Friday. The 235-horsepower Textron Lycoming engine promises slightly better performance than its predecessor, the T182, produced until 1983. "We have listened to our customers and are pleased to provide them with an increase in power, rate of climb, and takeoff performance," said Cessna spokeswoman Christina Taylor. A three-blade propeller comes standard, as does a Honeywell Bendix/King avionics stack, including a single nav/com and two-axis autopilot. Avionics options include the new Bendix/King KLN 94 GPS and KMD 550 multifunction display, and BF Goodrich WX-500 Stormscope. Cessna expects deliveries to begin by the end of this month. The
base price is $281,600. For more, see the Web site
AMD OFFE RS LIGHTER CH2000
Aircraft Manufacturing and Development Company Inc. is offering a lighter version of the certified Alarus CH2000. The change will allow owners to fly it with full fuel while carrying two 200-pound pilots. It was made possible by using a lighter propeller, smaller battery at the firewall, lighter alternator, and a 25-useable-gallon fuselage fuel tank. The lighter airplane will remain in the Utility category and will have the same airframe as the standard CH2000. For more, see the Web site.
FAA LOOKS FOR SOURCE OF ATC INTERFERENCE
FAA officials are conducting flights over central Florida to locate three transmitters that have caused interference with air traffic control communications. The problem has affected airline and other high-altitude traffic in the area. A Beech King Air operated by the FAA, which is primarily used for checking navigation devices, pinpointed one of the transmitters recently, using moving maps and computers. Specially equipped ground vehicles operated by the Federal Communications Commission can then locate the address of the transmissions. All three sources of interference are described as voice communications, and may not be intentional. One of the sources appears to be a malfunctioning radio used by a truck driving school.
For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.
| Inside AOPA |
| AOPA, FAA WORK TO IMPROVE FIELD APPROVALS |
AOPA is working with the FAA to improve the field approval process for major repairs and alterations to aircraft. Many FAA flight standards district office (FSDO) inspectors have become increasingly reluctant to grant field approvals to alterations such as avionics installations. This is forcing aircraft owners to go "FSDO shopping" or to obtain the more costly and complex supplemental type certificates (STCs) to install something as simple as a new GPS receiver.AOPA is working with the FAA Field Approval Process Improvement Team to develop a nationwide standard to define what changes can be made with a field approval, and to give inspectors less discretion to reject installations previously approved by other inspectors. The FAA will also be incorporating the use of management designated airworthiness representatives, an alternative to FSDO inspectors, which is intended to speed up the approval of a particular alteration project.
AOPA HELPS CALIFORNIA AIRPORT PAC
AOPA President Phil Boyer was the featured speaker last Friday at a fund-raising dinner for the Watsonville (California) Regional Airport Promotion Political Action Committee. More than 130 airport supporters cheered his presentation about the value of general aviation airports to the community, which was videotaped for later viewing by members of the Watsonville City Council. Area aviators have been battling closure efforts since the 1980s. "AOPA applauds the efforts of this group and encourages pilots in other communities to become more active in local politics, to educate the public and politicians, and to counteract the all-too-common situation in which land developers drive decisions that threaten the local airport," Boyer said. For more, see AOPA Online.
AOPA AUTO INSURANCE OFFERS AVIATION PERKS
An innovative auto insurance program for AOPA members provides aviation-related enhancements. (Not yet available in all states.) The program will waive up to $250 of the deductible for a loss to a covered vehicle that is parked in an aiport parking lot, while you are operating an aircraft that you own, rent, or lease for pleasure. The program also provides transportation expense reimbursement (up to $900) when your aircraft malfunctions and leaves you stranded away from home. This new program is underwritten by the member companies of American International Group INC. (AIG). For more information, see AOPA Online or call the AIG companies toll-free 877/659-2446; use keycode HALXXX or extension 4597 to obtain a quote.
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| On Capitol Hill |
| BUSH BUDGET AIMS TO EXAMINE PRIVATE ATC SYSTEM |
After outlining his administration's priorities to a joint session of Congress Tuesday night, President Bush submitted a 207-page budget plan, titled "A Blueprint for New Beginnings," to Capitol Hill the following morning. The budget plan recommends full funding for aviation at the "firewall" level of $13.3 billion, $725 million above the current funding level. In addition, the plan contains language committing the administration to working with Congress and the aviation community "to develop a plan of action for improving the nation's aviation record, and in particular to examine the success that various nations, such as Canada, have experienced with individual air traffic control systems owned and operated by private companies." For more Capitol Hill news, see AOPA Online.
| Airport Support Network |
| VOLUNTEERS OF THE WEEK |
Four AOPA Airport Support Network volunteers at as many airports in Prince Georges County, Maryland, are being honored this week for their efforts in drumming up attention about a local planning commission report that, among other options, mentioned closing two of the airports, Freeway Airport (W00) and Potomac Airfield (VKX). Martha Ainsworth, of Freeway Airport; Caroline D. Gabel, Washington Executive Airport/Hyde Field (W32); Lee Sommer, College Park Airport (CGS); and David Wartofsky, Potomac Airfield; contacted airport users and officials to encourage input on meetings about the land use compatibility and air safety study. They also provided information so that AOPA could weigh in. The commissioners were receptive and have included the comments along with the proposed zoning laws that will be forwarded to the county council. The ASN volunteers will be attending upcoming meetings.
To learn more about the Airport Support Network, visit AOPA Online.
| AOPA Air Safety Foundation News |
| ASF WARNS PILOTS ABOUT PROP STRIKES |
In 1999, there were eight propeller-strike injuries. The AOPA Air Safety Foundation is reminding pilots to shut down the engine before allowing passengers to exit or approach the aircraft. Download the statistics in the 2000 ASF Nall Report on AOPA Online or, for more on propeller safety, see AOPA Online.
ASF HOSTS FUND-RAISING DINNER
ASF's first annual black-tie "Partnering with Corporate America" award dinner will honor Donald S. Freeman Jr., chairman and CEO of The Freeman Companies. The fund-raising event for ASF's work in general aviation safety will take place on March 14 at the Hotel Adolphus in Dallas. Individual tickets for the event are $250, with an option for an eight-person table. Of the ticket price, $150 may be tax deductible as a contribution to ASF. For more, see AOPA Online.
| Quiz Me! |
|Here’s a question asked by an AOPA member last week of our AOPA technical specialists. Test your knowledge. |
Question: When I call for a weather briefing, the briefer many times uses geographic designators such as "high plains" or "Red River Valley." Where can I find a list of these designators for areas I am not familiar with?
Answer: The recently revised "Advisory Circular 00-45E Aviation Weather Services" provides the answer. Figure 4-11, titled "Geographical Areas and Terrain Features," graphically presents the regions used by the flight service briefer. See AOPA Online.
Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? Call 800/872-2672 or e-mail to [email protected]. Send comments on our Quiz Me! questions to [email protected].
| AOPA Sweepstakes Bonanza Update |
| SWEEPS BONANZA REALLY HUMS |
It's fast all right. Try an economy cruise speed of more than 200 knots with a fuel burn of 14.7 gallons per hour. Read the latest about test flights of the 2001 AOPA Sweepstakes Bonanza on AOPA Online.
| What's New At AOPA Online |
| CHANGE NOTICES NOW ON AOPA ONLINE |
Change notices for U.S. terminal procedures are now available in AOPA's Airport Directory Online. The notices are published at the midpoint between the 56-day chart cycles and cover revisions, additions, and deletions to the terminal procedures for the conterminous United Sates. For more, see AOPA Online.
| Coming up in AOPA PILOT |
|Fly the Commander 115, buy the inexpensive Cessna 120/140 of your dreams, and go rafting and mountain flying along Idaho's Salmon River in the April issue of AOPA Pilot. It will be mailed March 18. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS |
NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE. The Mid-South Aviation Maintenance Seminar takes place March 6 and 7 at the Radisson Hotel at Opryland. Call 615/781-5443 for event information.
TITUSVILLE, FLORIDA. A Warbird Air Show takes place at Space Coast Regional Airport (TIX), 321/267-8780, March 9 through 11. Call 321/268-1941 for event information.
EL CENTRO, CALIFORNIA. The Naval Air Force Base at El Centro hosts the El Centro Air Show March 10. Call 760/339-2604 for event information.
SEBRING, FLORIDA. The South Florida Seaplane Fly-In takes place at Lake Jackson March 11. Call 954/421-8917 for event information.
For more airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online
For more events, see Aviation Calendar of Events
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 Birmingham, Alabama; Phoenix; and San Mateo, California, March 10 and 11. Clinics are scheduled in Ontario, California; Orlando, Florida; and Lubbock, Texas, March 17 and 18. For the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule, see AOPA Online.
ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
The next AOPA ASF Safety Seminars are scheduled in Nashville, March 6; Atlanta, March 8; Springdale, Ohio, and Fort Myers, Florida, March 12; Dayton and Miami, March 13; Columbus, Ohio, and Lake Worth, Florida, March 14; and Cleveland and Vero Beach, Florida, March 15. For more information see AOPA Online.
ASF PINCH-HITTER GROUND-SCHOOL COURSES
(Pinch-Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)The next Pinch-Hitter(R) Ground Schools will take place March 4 in Philadelphia, and March 18 in Ontario, California. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.
AOPA PILOT TOWN MEETINGS
Featuring AOPA President Phil Boyer
(7:30 p.m.; admission is free) The next Pilot Town Meetings are in Tulsa, March 13; and Austin, Texas, March 15. For more information on Pilot Town Meetings, see AOPA Online.
For comments on calendar items or to make submissions, contact Julie S. Walker at [email protected].
Got news tips? Contact ePilot editor Nathan A. Ferguson at [email protected] Having difficulty using this service? Visit the ePilot Frequently Asked Questions now at AOPA Online or write to [email protected].
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