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December 12, 2012

ANN Daily Aero-Briefing: 12.12.12

Riggs vs the NTSB – Round 1 Begins Today…

Piper and State of Florida Amend Economic Goals…

Delta and Virgin Atlantic Launch Join

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FAA v Riggs - Day 1: FAA Accuses Riggs Of Witness Tampering

NTSB: Judge Geraghty Also "Distressed" Over Riggs Suit Against Witnesses

The ongoing battle between those attempting to keep aviation safe and scoundrel-free, and a persistent aero-con-man, got a new start this morning as aviation bad-boy, David Glen Riggs, stood before NTSB Administrative Law Judge Patrick Geraghty. This is Riggs' most recent attempt to stave off the FAA's fight to revoke his certificates for this part in an unlawful commercial operation in which an associated airplane, flown by another pilot crashed, killing the pilot, Doug Gilliss, and his passenger Rick Winslow. Early indications are that Riggs is in for a rough ride. FAA Counsel, Naomi Tsuda, started in early as Tsuda told Judge Geraghty in the public hearing that she believes the

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New NASA-Funded Forecast System Helps Transoceanic Flights Avoid Storms

NCAR-Based System Combines Satellite Data With Computer Models

A new NASA-funded prototype system developed by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) of Boulder, CO, now is providing weather forecasts that can help flights avoid major storms as they travel over remote ocean regions. The eight-hour forecasts of potentially dangerous atmospheric conditions are designed for pilots, air traffic controllers and others involved in transoceanic flights.

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MEBAA, GAMA Announce Joint Initiative

Will Work Together To Facilitate Business Aviation Interests In The Middle East And North Africa

The Middle East Business Aviation Association (MEBAA), and GAMA announced  a joint initiative to work together to further promote and develop business aviation in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

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Southwest Airlines Announces Executive Changes

VP And General Counsel Madeleine Johnson Announces Retirement

Madeleine Johnson will be retiring as Vice President and General Counsel at Southwest Airlines effective Feb. 1, 2013. Her successor will be Mark Shaw, currently Southwest's Associate General Counsel of Corporate & Transactions.

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BTS: Domestic Airlines Report Two Tarmac Delays Over Three Hours

None Longer Than Four Hours On International Flights In October

Airlines reported two tarmac delays of more than three hours on domestic flights but no tarmac delays of more than four hours on international flights in October, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Air Travel Consumer Report released Tuesday.

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Airbus Military A400M Completes Critical Flight-Test Phase

On Track For Full Certification And First Delivery

Airbus Military has successfully completed the 300 hours of Function & Reliability (F&R) flight-testing of the A400M new generation airlifter which is a key requirement prior to full certification. Data from the F&R program, which was performed entirely using the first production-representative aircraft – MSN6 / Grizzly 5 – is now being examined by the civil and military certification authorities for the A400M – respectively EASA and a committee appointed by OCCAR.

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NavWorx ADS-B Is 'Fully Operational,' TSO Anticipated

Installed On Certified Cessna, Experimental RV Aircraft, And Others

Avionics company NavWorx says its Universal Access Transceiver (UAT) ... delivering the benefits of NextGen air transportation technology to general aviation aircraft ... is "fully operational," and the company expects TSO certification "soon." The company’s flagship product, the ADS600-B, is a single device that both transmits and receives critical flight data and information services into the cockpit.

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Air Force: Drone Accident Rate At Civilian Airports 'Unacceptably High'

Pilot Error, Software Issues, Mechanical Failures All Cited As Causes

Internal Air Force investigation reports indicate that the service is losing drones at an unacceptably high rate at civilian airports similar to an accident which occurred in the Seychelles in April.

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CAE Names New VP

Bob Lewis Tapped As GM Of The Global Business Aviation, Helicopter and Maintenance Training Business Unit

Robert (Rob) H. Lewis has been named Vice President and General Manager of CAE's global Business Aviation, Helicopter and Maintenance Training business unit. The company made the announcement on the eve of the Middle East Business Aviation (MEBA) conference.

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IMC Club Steps Up Marketing Efforts

Video Produced By One Of The Top Marketing Firms In The Country

One of the top marketing agencies in the country, which prefers to remain anonymous, provided its pro bono services to the IMC Club International by designing and producing a ninety-second promotional video about the organization. The Club is working to expand its presence in the General Aviation community.

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Man Who Apparently Fell From A Plane Over London Is A Three-Month-Old Mystery

Believed To Be From Africa, Stowaway In Airliner Wheel Well

Authorities are still searching for the identity of a man who they believe fell from the wheel well of an airliner as it lowered its landing gear on approach to Heathrow airport in London September 9th.

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AD: Agusta S.p.A.

AD NUMBER: 2012-21-52

PRODUCT: Agusta Model AW139 helicopters.

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AD: The Boeing Company Airplanes (737)

AD NUMBER: 2012-24-08

PRODUCT: Certain The Boeing Company Model 737-600, -700, -700C, -800, -900, and -900ER series airplanes.

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Classic Aero-TV: Stemme S10-VT -- A Whole Other Kind of High-Performance

The Corporate Pilots' Fun Airplane

Nestled among the multi-million-dollar business jets and high-performance turboprops at the NBAA static display in Las Vegas in October was something a little unusual... a motorglider. Alexander Papenberg, CEO of Stemme USA, was showing off the Stemme S10-VT at NBAA for a simple reason. "Lots of corporate pilots fly from A to B IFR during the workday, and on weekends they want to fly a real airplane. They come here, they look at it, and fall in love."

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Delta To Acquire 49 Percent Of Virgin Atlantic

Airlines Form 'Strategic Alliance' With Delta's $360 Million Investment

Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic Airways Ltd. have reached an agreement for a new joint venture that the companies say will create an expanded trans-Atlantic network and enhance competition between the U.K. and North America, offering greater benefits for customers traveling on those routes.

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NASA Awards Commercial Crew Contracts

Next Step Toward Domestic Launch Program

NASA announced Monday that it has selected three companies to conduct activities under contracts that will enable future certification of commercial spacecraft as safe to carry humans to the International Space Station. Advances made by these American companies during the first contract phase known as the certification products contracts (CPC) will begin the process of ensuring integrated crew transportation systems will meet agency safety requirements and standards to launch American astronauts to the International Space Station from the United States.

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Aero-News Alert: David Riggs Files Suit Against Accident Witnesses

Witness Intimidation? All Three Defendants Had Provided Testimony At The Request Of The FAA/NTSB

Preliminary Report: On the eve of the NTSB hearing in which aviation con-man and bad boy, David Riggs, is expected to try and defend himself against the FAA's Emergency Order of Revocation, ANN has learned that Riggs' company, Mach One Aviation, has filed suit against three of the witnesses who have provided testimony to the FAA, and who may be asked to appear against him in the upcoming hearing. The suit, ostensibly filed as a, "COMPLAINT FOR INTENTIONAL INTERFERENCE WITH PROSPECTIVE ECONOMIC RELATIONS," was filed by LA based attorney, Paul Sweeney, who confirmed the existence of the suit but refused to provide more details until he OK'ed it with Riggs. Swee

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Kurt Robinson Named To IHST Executive Committee

Robinson Helicopter Co. President To Help Guide The International Helicopter Safety Team

Helicopter safety organization The International Helicopter Safety Team (IHST) has added Robinson Helicopter Company President Kurt Robinson to its Executive Committee.

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DOT Fines Vision Airlines For Charter Violations

Penalty Assessed For Flight Cancellations Related To Direct Air’s Shutdown

The DOT has assessed a $50,000 penalty against Vision Airlines for violating rules that protect passengers when their public charter flights are suddenly canceled and ordered the carrier to cease and desist from further violations.

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Dassault's Falcon 2000S Beats Performance Targets

Final Performance Specs For The Falcon 2000S 'Substantially Better Than Initially Projected'

Following an 18 month test program that lasted 350 flight hours over 150 flights, Dassault says the Falcon 2000S will substantially beat its initial performance specifications when the airplane is certified, which is expected early next year.

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Boeing Delivers First 777-300ER In U.S.To American Airlines

Long-Range Jetliner Part Of The Carrier's Fleet

American Airlines has taken delivery of the first Boeing 777-300ER to be operated by a U.S. flagged carrier. The airplane is part of American's fleet modernization effort and global network strategy. American Airlines plans for the airplane to enter service in early 2013 on the Dallas/Fort Worth-Sao Paulo route.

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NORAD Conducts Exercise Flights Over Northern Minnesota

Practice Intercept Flights Test Responses, Systems, Equipment

North American Aerospace Defense Command conducted exercise flights over Minnesota northwest of Duluth Tuesday, practicing intercept and identification procedures. The fighter jets were scheduled to fly near Sturgeon River in close proximity to military or military contracted aircraft taking on the role of an intercepted aircraft.

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Aero-News: Quote Of The Day (12.12.12)

"NASA and its industry partners are committed to the goal of safely and cost-effectively launching astronauts from home within the next five years." Source: Phil McAlister, director of the Commercial Spaceflight Development Division at NASA.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Term (12.12.12): Single Frequency Approach

A service provided under a letter of agreement to military single-piloted turbojet aircraft which permits use of a single UHF frequency during approach for landing.

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ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (12.12.12)

Aerospace Medical Association

The Aerospace Medical Association (AsMA) is organized exclusively for charitable, educational, and scientific purposes.

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