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November 6, 2015, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' weekly newsletterNovember 6, 2015, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' weekly newsletter

Beechcraft Twin Bonanza D50E

NOVEMBER 6, 2015 - VOL 17, ISSUE 45

Top Stories


AOPA honors top trainers

AOPA has named the winners of its 2015 Flight Training Excellence Awards based on more than 7,100 responses to the AOPA Flight Training Poll. "This year's winners represent the very best in flight instruction, offering their students high-quality training that helps them achieve their aviation goals," said Chris Moser, AOPA manager of flight training initiatives. Read more...  


AOPA Live This Week

Flood knocks out tower, Australia by air

Torrential rain in Texas caused flooding that knocked out the control tower at Austin's main commercial airport, forcing airline pilots to revert to the nontowered procedures they learned in early training. AOPA Editor in Chief Tom Haines is touring Australia by general aviation; AOPA Live® Executive Producer Warren Morningstar reports from the Redbird Migration Flight Training Conference; and AOPA Online Associate Editor Jim Moore gets a firsthand look at the scenic potential and safe handling of unmanned aircraft in the Pocono Mountains. Watch AOPA Live This Week, Nov. 5...  

Technique and Safety



Cirrus save caught on video

Former Walmart CEO Bill Simon had just departed Bentonville, Arkansas, when his Cirrus SR22T lost power, and altitude. Simon deployed the airframe parachute and drifted to earth while amazed spectators captured video with cell phones. Read more...  



Persistent, fatal loss in spotlight

Loss of control accounts for four in 10 general aviation fatalities, and has been a persistent problem for many years. AOPA staff joined the discussion recently as the NTSB brought the GA community together to talk about how the losses can be stopped with technology, new approaches to pilot education and testing, and new approaches to airports, among other ideas aired, many already in the works. Read more...  



Standdown combats loss of control

You're flying single pilot in your Embraer Phenom 300 jet, ready for the approach at your destination. Then weather intervenes, air traffic control switches to a different approach, and you get behind the airplane, not noticing your decreasing airspeed and steepening bank putting you close to a stall. That's the scenario to be used Nov. 16 during the National Business Aviation Association's 2015 Single Pilot Safety Standdown on loss of control. Read more...  



Finish the approach with a safe landing

The last thing an instrument pilot wants to do after flying an approach in weather, or at night, is to have to go missed. But, as two NTSB cases illustrate, forcing the approach and landing instead of going missed can lead to runway overruns. How often do you land when practicing approaches to get the full effect? Read more...  



Ready to land?

A good landing starts with a good approach. In Takeoffs and Landings: Stabilized Approaches, the AOPA Air Safety Institute unveils the finer points of making each approach the foundation of a smooth landing. Watch the video...  


Accident analysis

One at a time

Investigation of a fatal 2014 accident in Florida found that the Great Lakes biplane's "overhauled" magnetos hadn't been. The owner probably didn't know, but it's a good idea to replace dual systems one at a time to ensure one tried-and-tested component is still in place. Read more in this special report from the AOPA Air Safety Institute...  


Pilot Safety Announcement

Don't fly like this!

Flying VFR into instrument conditions makes as much sense as flying blindfolded. You'll get the idea when you watch this Pilot Safety Announcement from the AOPA Air Safety Institute. Watch the video...  




Adjustments listed for frigid fields

The FAA has updated the list of airports where temperatures can fall so far in cold weather that altimeter error may require approach altitude adjustments. Read more...  



Plan to replace WACs released

Following extensive discussions with AOPA, the FAA has announced a new plan to ensure that pilots have all the information they need as the agency phases out world aeronautical charts. Read more...  



AOPA, FAA work to clear up confusion over ATP knowledge tests

AOPA is working with the FAA to end confusion over rules governing the airline transport pilot airplane knowledge test. Read more...  



Pilot Protection Services

Use common sense with supplemental oxygen

Pilot Protection Services medical expert Dr. Jonathan Sackier uses supplemental oxygen when flying at 5,000 feet and above during the day, and he dons it at night prior to takeoff. Find out why he feels so strongly about supplemental oxygen use. Read more...  




Continental adds cylinder coatings

Continental Motors has added nickel silicon carbide coatings across its entire line of products to avoid corrosion and increase hardness against wear. The process is already in use by automotive companies as well as racing organizations. Read more...  



The drone pro

A pilot who long ago built a general aviation business in New Jersey also was among the first unmanned aircraft operators approved for commercial work. Like others who invest tens of thousands of dollars in equipment, insurance, legal advice, and safety training, Frank Galella has many incentives to do the job right, every time. Read more...  




Say again?

The noise from flying airplanes and being around them on the ramp can take a toll on pilots' hearing. Opinion Leaders blogger Amy Laboda explains why it's important to use a good headset. Read more...  




Book review: 'The Wright Brothers'

Aviation history buffs might enjoy David McCullough's book, The Wright Brothers. "More so than the other books I am familiar with, this account made it feel like I knew Wilbur and Orville, as well as their sister, Katharine, another key member of the team," writes AOPA Alaska Regional Manager Tom George. Read more...  




Gyroplane tours US, sets records

Two pilots in a gyroplane flew from Dallas to Los Angeles to New York and back to Dallas, setting records in the process. Read more...  


Online resource

Tips to help you fly to Mexico

If you are planning to fly to Mexico, AOPA's Mexico resource page offers information on trip preparation, departing the United States and entering Mexico, flying in the country, returning to the United States, and more. The resource will walk you through step by step to help you have a pleasant trip south of the border.



AOPA Foundation focus

Hat in the Ring Society membership has its benefits

When pilots join the AOPA Foundation's Hat in the Ring Society, they do so to help the future of general aviation, but they also enjoy the privilege of membership and the opportunity to share in great aviation events and meet new people. Read more...  

News and Notes


Rutan SkiGull completes first test

Burt Rutan's SkiGull got its sponsons wet Nov. 1 as Rutan's forty-seventh unique aircraft design marked a milestone toward development of a finished product. A report on the first water taxi tests, conducted near Hayden, Idaho, was published in the Coeur d'Alene Press, including a photo of Rutan watching from a chase boat. Rutan revealed his revolutionary design at EAA AirVenture in July.


Photos of Stewart's Cessna sought

The Cessna 310 flown by the late Hollywood legend Jimmy Stewart is being restored by Experimental Aircraft Association Chapter 993 at Pennsylvania's Indiana County/Jimmy Stewart Airport. Chapter members have completed reassembly and the twin is ready for paint. Trouble is, the black-and-white photos available don't capture the color of the wings, which were absent when restoration began. The team was able to match the primary colors of the fuselage with paint tag codes found in the fuselage, but the wing color remains unknown. The Indiana Gazette reported on the team's public appeal for period photos of Stewart's airplane.



PlaneSense stuffs Pilatus PC-12

PlaneSense, a fractional aircraft company, says it will fill a Pilatus PC-12 turboprop with nearly 1,000 pounds of nonperishable food and deliver it to the New Hampshire Food Bank in Manchester. Read more...  



Goyer to lead 'Plane & Pilot'

Longtime aviation writer and editor Robert Goyer will lead Plane & Pilot, which was recently purchased by Massachusetts-based Madavor Media. Read more...  



Flight training providers gather at Redbird's Migration

Now officially known as Redbird Flight, the simulator and technology company has held its three-day Migration gathering in San Marcos, Texas, for the past five years. And while no two events have been the same, each is a little bit customer meeting, flight training symposium, and creative workshop. This year's event featured tuxedos, Cheez Whiz, and high-profile speakers. Read more...  

Career Opportunities


AOPA career opportunities

Join the AOPA team

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? We're looking for a major gift officer; legal services plan administrative assistant; AOPA Foundation administrative assistant; account executive; aviation event planner; and director of aviation security.To learn more about other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.

Question of the Week


On an RNAV approach associated with a terminal arrival area (TAA)—such as the RNAV (GPS) RWY 9L approach into Orlando Sanford International Airport—are you required to query ATC about altitude restrictions after being cleared for the approach?


No. According to Aeronautical Information Manual 5-4-5, "Once cleared for the approach, pilots may descend in the TAA sector to the minimum altitude depicted within the defined area/subdivision, unless instructed otherwise by air traffic control." When you are within the TAA you are considered established on a published section of the approach, so there is no need to query ATC or ask for a descent to the published altitude. However, it is never incorrect to ask for clarification of a clearance that you don't understand.

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


Education and Seminars

Flight Instructor Refresher Courses

Nov 7-8 - Atlanta, Georgia; and San Diego, California

Nov 14-15 - Ashburn, Virginia; Austin, Texas; Albuquerque, New Mexico; and Anchorage, Alaska

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

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

Nov 18 - Milan, Illinois

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

Rusty Pilot Seminars

Nov 7 - Auburn, California

Nov 14 - Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; Ashland, Virginia; New Orleans, Louisiana; and San Jose, California

Dec 3 - West Windsor, New Jersey

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

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.

AOPA Featured Event

Nov 7 — Frederick, Maryland. Frederick Municipal Airport (FDK). AOPA Movie Night at the AOPA National Aviation Community Center.

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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