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December 4, 2015, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' weekly newsletterDecember 4, 2015, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' weekly newsletter

Cessna/Wipaire Boss 182

DECEMBER 4, 2015 - VOL 17, ISSUE 49

Top Stories


SkiGull makes maiden flight

Like most maiden flights of a new design, Burt Rutan's SkiGull test flight produced a to-do list, but was a success overall. The legendary aircraft designer reported the results in an email to friends, noting that it will not be his final design, though it will be the last he builds with his own hands. Read more...  



New flying club benefits, resources

Free scheduling software is among a suite of new benefits and tools now available to flying clubs, AOPA announced Dec. 3. Read more...  


AOPA Live This Week

Two-seat tango; honoring excellence

AOPA editors pitted a pair of freshly reimagined Cessna two-seaters head-to-head in a fly-off for the bantamweight trainer title. The Cessna 150 and 152 were lined up on the ramp, a coin was flipped, and the drag race began. Flight training excellence is all about the people who make it happen at schools, institutions, and airports across the country. AOPA invited the nation's best to Frederick, Maryland, to honor their achievements with the 2015 Flight Training Excellence Awards. The association also released a number of new resources for flying clubs, including free online scheduling software. Watch AOPA Live This Week®, Dec. 3...  

Technique and Safety


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Dabbling in ice is not wise

With a new IFR rating in his wallet and his family on board his Cessna 172, Heath Wells expected to comfortably complete a flight across central Pennsylvania. But Mother Nature had other plans that almost spoiled the day. Watch Real Pilot Story: Icing Encounter to learn what Wells found out the hard way...



'Not only false, but fatal'

With ice accreting, the aircraft no longer able to climb, and peaks of the Sierras nearby, all the pilot wanted was an escape. Read more...  


Safety Spotlight

The right choices, every flight

According to the AOPA Air Safety Institute, "the best type of accident is one that's avoided." With that in mind, are you fully prepared to make the right choices for the best outcome the next time you fly? Sharpen your decision-making process with a little help from the Aeronautical Decision Making Safety Spotlight.  



Flight planning tools and tips

Lockheed Martin and AOPA will host a webinar Dec. 10 at 8 p.m. Eastern Standard Time to explain the advanced flight planning capabilities available to pilots at Lockheed Martin staff will be on hand to answer questions. Register...  




Avgas replacement testing detailed

Laboratory tests of unleaded avgas candidate fuels are nearing conclusion, and finalists will be chosen soon. The FAA has now offered a peek behind the scenes of the testing process, releasing a detailed document including photos of the test rigs and laboratories and the most up-to-date information on the program with a goal of completion in 2018. Read more... 



Pilot Protection Services

DUI refresher: What a pilot needs to do

Dr. Warren Silberman, former manager of FAA Aerospace Medical Certification, offers advice on what to do if you are charged with a DUI offense. Read more...  




Terrafugia takes unmanned turn

Terrafugia, the Boston-area startup working to build flying cars (or "roadable aircraft"), will soon fly an unmanned version of its latest design. Scaled to one-tenth size, the miniature TF-X will allow engineers to test and refine the design before a full-scale prototype is built. Read more...  




After the holiday: Flying home safely

The NTSB annals are full of accidents and incidents that happen on the backside of the holiday curve, when people are saturated with food, family, and good times—and sometimes rushing to get back for work, school, or other ordinary pressures. Suddenly pilots everywhere feel the pinch of get-home-itis. Opinion Leaders blogger Amy Laboda offers tips for "short circuiting the day-after get-home-itis syndrome." Read more...  




New batteries boost Bonanza power

The benefits of lithium-ion batteries moved one step closer to use in light general aviation aircraft when Transport Canada Civil Aviation approved the installation of the True Blue Power battery for use in the Beechcraft A36 Bonanza. Read more...  



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Flying abroad?

During this holiday season, are you planning to take your aircraft across the U.S. border? If so, don't forget to electronically submit flight details to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and make sure to include passenger and crew manifests. Brush up on the process with the AOPA Air Safety Institute's online course, Understanding eAPIS: A Pilot's Guide to Online Customs Reporting. Take the course...




Gulfstream to trim 1,100 jobs

Business jet manufacturer Gulfstream will trim 1,100 jobs, but testing of its new 18-passenger G500 will proceed as planned. Read more... 



Solar Impulse fully funded

Solar Impulse 2 has secured $20 million in new funding from corporate backers to complete its around-the-world journey promoting renewable energy. Read more...  



Get tips for aircraft transactions

Learn the steps and procedures for buying and selling an aircraft in an AOPA Pilot Protection Services webinar Dec. 9 at 8 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The webinar will include legal and tax tips concerning the pre-purchase inspection of an aircraft, contract review and negotiation, title searches, the bill of sale, sales-and-use tax, and aircraft registration. Register today...  



'Pilot Getaways' calendar supports memorial scholarship

Pilot Getaways is publishing a yearly calendar to celebrate late co-founder John Kounis's life, with proceeds benefiting an AOPA flight training scholarship named in his honor. Read more...  


AOPA Foundation focus

Push Hat in the Ring challenge over the top

As the end of the year closes in, so does the end of the $200,000 matching challenge for the AOPA Foundation's Hat in the Ring Society. Pilots who renew their participation or upgrade their support before Dec. 31 will have their tax-deductible donations matched, dollar for dollar. Donations for Hat in the Ring Society membership range from $1,000 to $5,000 and can be broken into quarterly, monthly, or one-time gifts. Learn more...  

News and Notes



Celebrating excellence

Winners of the 2015 Flight Training Excellence Awards, presented by Flight Training magazine, shared aviation training success stories and accepted silver-winged trophies and plaques for their accomplishments during a ceremony at AOPA headquarters Dec. 2. Read more...  



Military aviatrices honored

Women in Aviation, International has chosen a slate of military aviators for its 2016 International Pioneer Hall of Fame. It includes 10 women who were the first female officers to graduate from the U.S. Air Force Undergraduate Pilot Training Program. Read more...  



Cropduster fights Luftwaffe

The time is 1945, and the war in Europe is over. A tiny town in Texas is looking forward to welcoming back its heroes. Instead, visitors of a different kind descend on Morton in Duster, a graphic novel created by Micah Wright and Jay Lender. Read more...  

Career Opportunities


AOPA career opportunities

Join the AOPA team

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? AOPA is looking for a member services representative, legal services plan attorney, legal services plan administrative assistant, Southern regional manager, Western Pacific regional manager, major gift officer, and account executive.To learn more about other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.

Question of the Week


Colder weather, ice, and snow are just around the corner—or so you thought until you pulled up to your aircraft this morning. Your aircraft is covered in frost. You can remove frost a couple of ways, but do you have to? Could you just go flying with the frost?


Part 91 of the federal aviation regulations does not prohibit light general aviation aircraft from flying with contaminated wings, assuming there are no limitations in the Pilot's Operating Handbook for your aircraft. Part 91 Subpart F restricts larger aircraft operators from flying with contamination on most aircraft surfaces. And while Subpart F doesn't apply to pilots flying a Cessna 172 or Piper Archer, experience teaches us that legal and smart aren't always the same thing. Better to remove or melt the frost before flying. For more information, see the AOPA Air Safety Institute's Aircraft Icing Safety Advisor and other resources on icing and cold weather operations.

Got a question for our technical services staff? Contact AOPA.


Education and Seminars

Flight Instructor Refresher Courses

Dec 5-6 - Denver, Colorado; Orlando, Florida; and Northbrook, Illinois

Jan 9-10 - Spokane, Washington; Charlotte, North Carolina; San Antonio, Texas; Santa Clara, California; and Ridgeland, Mississippi

Jan 16-17 - Portland, Oregon; Bellevue, Washington; and Elkridge, Maryland

Jan 23-24 - Rockford, Tennessee; Long Beach, California; and Ypsilanti, Michigan

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

Air Safety Institute Safety Seminars

Jan 11 - Reno, Nevada; and The Woodlands, Texas

Jan 12 - Sacramento, California; and Houston, Texas

Jan 13 - Milpitas, California; and San Antonio, Texas

Jan 14 - Santa Rosa, California; and Austin, Texas

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

Rusty Pilot Seminars

Dec 5 - Scottsdale, Arizona; and Winter Haven, Florida

Dec 12 - Stow, Massachusetts

Dec 16 - Lancaster, California

Dec 17 - Addison, Texas

For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.


Aviation Calendar

Want something to do this weekend? Planning an aviation getaway? See AOPA's enhanced calendar of events. You can filter events by date range, airport ID, state, or region. Before you take off on an adventure, make sure you check our current aviation weather provided by Jeppesen.

To include an event or to search all events in the calendar, visit AOPA Online. For airport details, including FBO fuel prices, see AOPA Airports. AOPA does not endorse or assume responsibility for the events submitted and listed in the calendar.

Events by Region

Northeast | Eastern | Mid-Atlantic | Florida | Southeast | Great Lakes | Midwest | Southwest | Central | Western | California | Northwest | Alaska | Hawaii

ePilot Editors:

Alyssa Miller
Jim Moore
David Tulis

Production Assistant:

Melissa Whitehouse


Mike Collins
Sarah Deener
Dave Hirschman
Tom Horne
Alton K. Marsh
Warren Morningstar
Dan Namowitz
Jill W. Tallman
Elizabeth Tennyson
Ian J. Twombly
Julie Summers Walker

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