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AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Custom Content --Vol. 5, Issue 19AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Custom Content --Vol. 5, Issue 19

The following stories from the May 9, 2003, edition of AOPA ePilot were provided to AOPA members who expressed an interest in the particular subject areas. Any AOPA member can receive information customized to their areas of interest by updating their member record file online.

My ePilot - Instrument Interest
Just a heads-up: The 56-day update for instrument charts and some VFR charts will be effective next Thursday, May 15. Updated instrument approach procedures (all 12,416 documents) will be available that day in AOPA's Airport Directory Online.

~ My ePilot - Jet Interest ~
The Beechcraft Premier I is now capable of flying in tightly defined airspace throughout the world after receiving FAA Reduced Vertical Separation Minimum (RVSM) Group Certification. "Receiving group certification enables our owners to fly in the preferred flight paths, wherever they fly," said Bob Horowitz, president of Raytheon Aircraft's Beechcraft Division. Field kits for delivered Premier I aircraft are now available. The first delivered aircraft with RVSM capability is serial number 70.

The Cessna Citation CJ3 has successfully completed the first three weeks of its flight test program. The airplane logged 1.7 hours in its first flight and 1.4 hours in its second flight, which both occurred on April 17, as previously reported. Systems tested since then include the basic stability and control; test pilots also operated the landing gear, flaps, speed brakes, and trim system, and evaluated engine operating characteristics and slow flight. To date, the CJ3 has made five flights and logged 8.7 hours. Other recent accomplishments include confirmation of anticipated stall characteristics and airspeed calibration. Designed for single-pilot operation, the CJ3 offers a maximum cruise speed of 417 knots at 33,000 feet. With two pilots, full fuel, four passengers, and baggage, the CJ3 offers an IFR range of 1,664 nm and a VFR range of 1,900 nm. Cessna anticipates CJ3 type certification in the second quarter of 2004, with deliveries beginning in the fourth quarter of 2004.

Low market demand for business jets has forced Gulfstream Aerospace in Savannah, Georgia, to lay off 1,000 workers from June 30 to July 27. Gulfstream President Bryan Moss said sales are well below previous years. Affected employees will be allowed to take vacation time or use accrued personal time off, and will retain benefits and continue to accrue service time for pensions. Cessna Aircraft Company previously announced a seven-week furlough this summer affecting thousands of workers.

The Beechjet 400A has been renamed the Hawker 400XP (for extra payload) by Raytheon Aircraft. The move aligns the jet with products for the corporate market and takes advantage of a 200-pound gross weight increase recently introduced on the Beechjet 400A. Owner-flown aircraft will retain the Beechcraft name. A number of options now come standard on the $6.7 million jet, such as a five-year warranty, seating for nine passengers, thrust reversers, and TCAS II. Retaining the Beechcraft name are the Premier I jet, the King Air series, the Baron, and the Bonanza.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Training Tips
No student pilot gets far into training without realizing that there's a lot of "bookkeeping" to do. That's thanks to a federal aviation regulation (FAR) requiring that you "record the following time in a manner acceptable to the Administrator:
"(1) Training and aeronautical experience used to meet the requirements for a certificate, rating, or flight review of this part.
"(2) The aeronautical experience required for meeting the recent flight experience requirements of this part."

As discussed in the November 22, 2002, "Training Tips" ( click here to view) your pilot logbook is the official record of your training and eligibility for flight tests. But that's not the only place where key stages of your progress must be documented. When you have taken your presolo written test (download the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's Instructo r's Guide to the Presolo Written Test Safety Advisor ) and are ready for your first solo, be sure that both your student pilot/medical certificate and your logbook are in order. Use care; under certain circumstances-such as if you have changed instructors or flown multiple makes and models of aircraft-details can slip. (For answers to some frequently asked questions about training, download the FAA's Student Pilot Guide .

Review limitations on student pilots operating an aircraft in solo flight in
FAR 61.87(l). Note that "a student pilot may not operate an aircraft in solo flight unless that student pilot has received:
"(1) An endorsement from an authorized instructor on his or her student pilot certificate for the specific make and model aircraft to be flown; and
"(2) An endorsement in the student's logbook for the specific make and model aircraft to be flown by an authorized instructor, who gave the training within the 90 days preceding the date of the flight."

Don't just rely on your CFI for this; it's your certificate and logbook.

A lot of paperwork? It only takes a running check to keep the process error-free. "The FARs pertaining to solo flight are not mere formalities but building blocks, each designed to enhance different aspects of aviation skill or knowledge," wrote David Montoya in his December 2002 AOPA Flight Training feature, "What Dreams Are Made Of," which addressed presolo preparation.

Enjoy your new freedom! Catch a glimpse of your future-it's logged in "Memorable Moments" in the May 2002 AOPA Flight Training .

My ePilot - Training Products
Uncomfortable using the radio in your training aircraft? Many instructors suggest that their students listen to radio communications over a scanner or handheld transceiver. Now, you can listen to your favorite AM or FM broadcast station between aircraft transmissions. The new Air-Scan 125 from Sporty's Pilot Shop offers an aviation interrupt feature that will scan up to five aviation frequencies, preselected by the user, and interrupt the AM or FM program so that you can hear the aviation transmission. The radio sells for $159.50 and is available online or by calling 800/SPORTYS.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Final Exam
Question: It's getting to be thunderstorm season, and I want to know how far away from a thunderstorm can a pilot encounter hail?

Answer: Hail offers a definite hazard to aircraft. Updrafts lift supercooled drops of water above the freezing level; they fall out of the updraft, are lifted again, and begin collecting layers of ice as they move inside the thunderstorm cell. The stronger the updrafts, the larger the hailstones can grow. They can range from the size of peas to more than 5 inches in diameter. Hailstones can either be ejected from the thunderstorm-as far as 20 miles from the cloud-or grow too large to be lifted and fall to the ground. Hail most often falls ahead of the advancing thunderstorm cell. It is recommended that pilots avoid thunderstorms by at least 20 miles from the edge of a storm cloud. See the AOPA subject report Thunderstorm Avoidance . Two FAA advisory circulars provide excellent information: download AC 00-6A Aviation Weather and AC 61-23C Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge.

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