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March 21, 2014, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' weekly newsletterMarch 21, 2014, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' weekly newsletter

Diamond DA-42NG

MARCH 21, 2014 - VOL 16, ISSUE 12

Top Stories


Inverted flat spin record bid

Airshow performer Spencer Suderman appears to have set a new world record with an 81-turn, three-minute-plus inverted flat spin in a Pitts S-2B that took him from 23,000 feet to less than 2,000 feet over the California desert. Suderman has applied to Guinness World Records for a new standard in consecutive inverted flat spins. "I'm as excited as hell!" he said. "I've been trying for this for a long time." Read more and watch the video... Share:  



Textron completes Beech buy

Cessna Aircraft parent Textron has closed a $1.4 billion deal to buy Beechcraft Corp., including Beechcraft's Hawker jet brand. Textron announced that all three brands will continue under the Textron Aviation banner. Read more... Share:  


AOPA Live This Week

Affordable glass, inverted flat spin record attempt

This week, check out a standby instrument at a price you won't believe and an affordable VFR primary flight display in a wrap-up of news from the Aircraft Electronics Association convention. Plus, look at the first flight of Goodyear's new "blimp," and get a view from inside the airplane during a world-record attempt of 81 inverted flat spins. AOPA Live This Week®, March 20... Share:  

Technique and Safety


Accident analysis

Complacency kills the captain

An 18,000-hour pilot takes off with two pilot passengers after an abbreviated preflight. They're going on a short 10-nautical-mile flight. Less than 1,000 feet in the air, the engine stops, and the pilot crashes trying to turn back to the airport, killing all on board. A careful preflight could have spotted the problem that made the engine seize. Read more in this special report from the Air Safety Institute. Share:  


Rotorcraft Rookie

Round and round he goes

Solo practice in a helicopter is restricted to more or less pounding the pattern. Read more... Share:  



'Less of a stunt, more of a sport'

Brian Drake put a software development career on hold to pursue a dream of flying in Europe. The 33-year-old wingsuit flier is making a name for himself in extreme sport circles, zipping within a few feet of jagged rocks at more than 100 mph as his cameras roll. Read more... Share:  



Sneak peek at new

A design refresh of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Aviation Weather Center/Aviation Digital Data Service (ADDS) website will go live March 25, and pilots can preview the site before the launch. Read more... Share:  



'Messing with power'

Instrument instructors seeking material to use when administering instrument proficiency checks should note the results of the March 11 poll question. Read more... Share:  



Let's not meet in the sky

One simple rule applies to all pilots, in any flying environment, in any aircraft, and it is arguably the most fundamental rule of flying that keeps us safe—see and avoid. It makes simple sense, doesn't it? We're not alone up there. Read more... Share:  


Pilot Safety Announcement

It only takes 178 seconds

VFR flight into IMC is general aviation's most fatal type of weather-related accident, claiming as many lives as thunderstorm and icing encounters combined. Despite the inherent lethality of such a dangerous activity, pilots continue to roll the dice and lose. Don't get lured into the trap. Watch the video... Share:  



Lost Boeing renews discussion on tracking

The Malaysian Airlines mystery, which has now extended into weeks, reopens a discussion regarding emergency locator transmitters, personal locator beacons, and tracking. Read more... Share:  

AOPA Fly-Ins



Wagstaff an AOPA Ambassador

Legendary airshow pilot Patty Wagstaff will serve as an AOPA Ambassador and will meet fans, sign autographs, and speak about the demanding and exciting world of competitive and demonstration flying at AOPA's booths at major airshows and several AOPA Fly-Ins in 2014. Read more... Share:  



AOPA works for Texas pilots

While Texas is certainly an aviation-minded state, AOPA has worked hard to keep the Lone Star skies friendly to general aviation. As the association prepares to welcome pilots to the AOPA Fly-In April 26 in San Marcos, AOPA is also looking ahead to unfinished business in Austin, and keeping close watch on airport and airspace developments. Read more... Share:  




Santa Monica advocates: Speak up

AOPA spoke to a standing-room only meeting of the Santa Monica Airport Association, urging supporters of the embattled airport to speak up and correct misinformation about the airport and its value to the community. Read more... Share:  



FBOs report new inquiries from CBP

FBOs across the country are reporting a sudden increase in the number of calls they receive from people claiming to be Customs and Border Protection officers and asking for information about general aviation flights and pilots. Read more... Share:  




In-flight Internet for less

Bendix/King on March 13 introduced a new system for connecting pilots and passengers to the Web at a cost and weight that is lower than systems available previously. Read more... Share:  



New FreeFlight ADS-B approvals

The FAA has issued an approved model list supplemental type certificate (AML STC) for the RANGR FDL-978-XVR ADS-B In/Out Universal Access Transceiver (UAT), FreeFlight Systems announced March 20. Read more... Share:  



FreeFlight ADS-B installation list grows

FreeFlight Systems announced several other ADS-B installations and approvals during the Aircraft Electronics Association convention, held in Nashville, Tenn., March 12 through 15. Read more... Share:  


Online survey

Survey seeks input on ADS-B

A team of researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's International Center for Air Transportation is studying the impact of Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) traffic and weather services and would like your input. Please consider taking 15 minutes to complete an anonymous online survey. Read more and take the survey... Share:  




The journey of a thousand miles

Opinion Leaders blogger Ron Rapp says the effort in Congress to allow some pilots to use their driver's license in lieu of a medical certificate is a step in the right direction on a "journey of a thousand miles." Read more... Share:  




Sandia introduces Quattro

Sandia Aerospace has introduced the SAI 340 Quattro, a replacement for steam-gauge standby instruments in electronic flight instrument system (EFIS)-equipped aircraft. Read more... Share:  



Garmin debuts AOA, radar altimeter

Taking advantage of recent FAA rule changes, Garmin is introducing a new angle of attack system for $1,499 later this year, along with a new radar altimeter system. Read more... Share:  



Dynon offers touchscreen SkyView

Dynon Avionics is offering new features for its flagship SkyView suite, including a touchscreen, two new control panels, and upgraded software. Read more... Share:  


Apps of the week

Flight planning apps aid pilots

As more flight planning tasks become automated, pilots can choose from dozens of apps to help them prepare for a flight. AOPA highlights five flight planning apps that can help. Read more... Share:  




Pi for everyone

An artist's vision executed by aviators in skyscraper-tall letters and numbers over Austin, Texas, drew a massive response on social media. It was a unique celebration of Pi Day (March 14, or 3/14), and it proved to be a demonstration of the power of words written in thin air. Read more... Share:  



Safety seminars, more at Sun 'n Fun

Safety and training seminars at AOPA's expanded campus at Sun 'n Fun feature important topics presented by Kristine Hartzell of the Air Safety Institute, John and Martha King of King Schools, and flight instructor and author Rod Machado. Read more... Share:  



Bahamas challenge winners announced has announced the winners of the 2013 Bahamas Pilot Challenge. Read more... Share:  




Second chance sought for Indiana strip

When a privately owned, public-use airport came up for sale in Hobart, Ind., the real estate broker working to sell it set himself a goal: find an aviation-minded buyer who would keep the welcome mat out for pilots. Read more... Share:  



Clemson club flies high after 87 years

A storied history, low-cost flight training, and strong support from the school community add up to success for South Carolina's Clemson University Flying Club. Read more... Share:  



Protect yourself when you rent an airplane

More often than not, FBOs and aircraft owners do not provide adequate coverage (if any) to the renting pilot, putting the renter at huge financial risk. Learn what kind of renter's insurance you need to protect yourself in this webinar with AOPA Insurance Services President Bill Snead, hosted by SocialFlight. Read more... Share:  


AOPA Strategic Partner

Aero-Space Reports teams with BiddingAce

Aero-Space Reports, an AOPA Strategic Partner, will be the exclusive escrow company for BiddingAce, which offers a new type of website for listing and selling general aviation aircraft. Read more... Share:  


AOPA Stay Smart Webinar

Learn how to start a flying club

Thinking of starting a flying club? Take the guesswork out of a daunting process by attending a webinar on how to start a flying club March 27 at 8 p.m. Eastern time. AOPA Vice President of the Pilot Information Center Woody Cahall will discuss the start-up process step-by-step, using guidelines outlined in the new AOPA's Guide to Starting a Flying Club. Register... Share:  

News and Notes



Part 23 rewrite forum at AEA

The FAR Part 23 rewrite was the subject of a forum at the recent Aircraft Electronics Association convention in Nashville, Tenn. Read more... Share:  



1958 'Pilot' magazine cover poll

As part of AOPA's seventy-fifth anniversary celebration, help AOPA editors pick the favorite AOPA Pilot magazine covers throughout history. Each week, AOPA will open up one or more polls for members to pick the favorite cover from a specific year. We'll take the member favorites from each year and enter them in a showdown for you to pick the best of the best. Take the poll... Share:  



Goodyear unveils new airship

The Goodyear Blimp, an advertising icon for decades, has entered a new generation of technology with the unveiling of a Zeppelin NT airship custom-built for the Ohio tire icon. Read more... Share:  


AOPA Stay Smart webinar

DUIs and your medical certificate

Join Kathleen A. Yodice on March 26 at 8 p.m. Eastern for an exclusive webinar, which is limited to members of AOPA's Pilot Protection Services Program. The webinar will help you understand what you must do to satisfy the FAA if you are stopped by law enforcement for a suspected DUI, so that you can avoid an unnecessary enforcement action. Learn more and register now… Share:  



Video combines aviation, dance

Justin Myles has loved aviation and dance since he was a child. Now he's found a way to combine both passions. Read more... Share:  


Best Aircraft Showdown

Showdown: J-3 vs. Staggerwing

The classic Piper J-3 Cub catapulted past the Waco YMF-5D in the first round of the Best Aircraft Showdown, presented by Aero-Space Reports. But can it hold its own against the stylish Beech Staggerwing? Your votes on March 21 will determine which aviation icon makes it to the next round in the bracket-style competition. Then, resume voting March 25. Vote on this and other matchups... Share:  



At Seattle Museum of Flight, students become pilots

What would it be like to fly? The Seattle Museum of Flight poses that question to thousands of fourth through twelfth grade students each month. Read more... Share:  



Strange but true general aviation news

A Soviet bomber auction pulled from eBay, 14 years in prison for pointing a laser, and two excursions at the Alton Bay ice runway. Read more... Share:  

Career Opportunities


Aviation job board

Job of the week: 'Barnstormers' display ad account sales, the largest and busiest general aviation online marketplace in the world, is seeking an advertising account executive to join the team. The successful candidate will have two-plus years' ad or Internet sales experience, a verifiable proven track record of meeting sales quota, and GA market experience. See a full job description.


AOPA career opportunities

Join the AOPA team

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? We're looking for an account manager II, director of insurance business operations, and member services representative. To learn more about other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.

Question of the Week


You're flying in a light single-engine airplane and about to fly over a mountain range. The winds aloft are blowing perpendicular to the mountain range. Which side of the mountain range is more hazardous: the upwind side or the leeward side?


The leeward side presents the greater hazard due to the possibility of downdrafts which may exceed the climb capability of the aircraft. (Source: AIM 7-5-6.)

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.



Renting versus owning

Which is cheaper—renting or owning?


Education and Seminars

Flight Instructor Refresher Courses

Apr 5-6 - Denver, Colo.; Cincinnati, Ohio; San Diego, Calif.; Tampa, Fla.; and Indianapolis, Ind.

Apr 12-13 - Atlanta, Ga.; Waltham, Mass.; Salt Lake City, Utah; and Ashburn, Va.

May 3-4 - Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Albany, N.Y.; and Pensacola, Fla.

May 17-18 - Sacramento, Calif.; Kansas City, Mo.; and Houston, Texas.

For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the Air Safety Institute's new Online eFIRC.

Air Safety Institute Safety Seminars

Mar 21 - Greenville, S.C.

Mar 24 - Ypsilanti, Mich.; and Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Mar 25 - Des Moines, Iowa; and Independence, Ohio.

Mar 26 - Bedford, Mass.; Columbus, Ohio; and Bellevue, Neb.

Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.


Aviation Calendar

Check out user-submitted events from your region. To include an event or to search all events in the calendar, visit AOPA Online. AOPA does not endorse the events listed below, nor have ePilot editors edited the submissions. AOPA assumes no responsibility for events listed.

Picture Perfect

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!

ePilot Editor:

Benét Wilson

Production Team

Katie Richardson
Lezlie Ramsey
Melissa Whitehouse


Sarah Deener
Alyssa Miller
Jim Moore
Jill W. Tallman
Elizabeth Tennyson
Warren Morningstar
Alton K. Marsh
Dave Hirschman
Tom Horne
Ian J. Twombly
Dan Namowitz

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