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January 23, 2004

Update: Long Day, Little Progress For Gus McLeod

Pole Crossing Delayed By Mechanical Problems Thursday was set to be the first day of a new bone-chilling adventure for Dr. Gustavus McLeod. Unfortunately, he was forced to return back to Florida due to some nagging aircraft problems. McLeod was 30 miles south of Cuba on the way to Panama for the first leg of a long, challenging attempt to fly solo over both the North and South Poles in a single-engine plane when the mechanical gremlins awoke. McLeod, 49, was flying a modified Velocity SportPlane called the Firefly, when he noticed a series of abnormal electrical and oil pressure indications on the aircraft's instrument panel. Right away, he decided to contact the folks at Velocity for some technical guidance. Duane Swing, owner of Velocity Inc., told A

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Serious (and Much Deserved) Honors Bestowed Upon AOPA's Tunstill

ANN was pleased to be in attendance when AOPA recognized one of the figureheads from one of the most successful and positive GA victories of 2003. AOPA President Phil Boyer honored Jack Tunstill, the AOPA Airport Support Network (ASN) volunteer for St. Petersburg, Fla.'s Albert Whitted Airport, at a surprise dinner Thursday night. Tunstill was the driving force locally behind the triumphant effort to save the bayside airport, working in close coordination with AOPA's Airports department. "Jack epitomizes the ASN volunteer," said Boyer. "He spoke out in strong defense of Albert Whitted in the face of apparently overwhelming odds. He worked to coordinate the efforts of two airport support groups — the Airport Advisory Council and the Albert Whitted Airport Preservation So

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EXTRA Aircraft Progress Report: What a Year!

Company Says 2003 Was A Success

Looking back on the last twelve months, it all seems like a whirlwind to some but Extra Aircraft LLC see it this buzz of activity as a very positive sign. According to Ken Keith, CEO and owner of the new company, the first year of his operation was filled with business success, customer satisfaction and several new aircraft orders. "Extra had seen its share of troubled times, believe me," Keith added. "But our new team was committed to making 2003 a terrific year for the new Extra Aircraft, and that's exactly how we're seeing our first year conclude." In addition to creating an all new US-owned management team and company infrastructure -- an admirable feat in itself in only a few months time -- Extra Aircraft brought its all new

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New Aviation Fuel Farm Under Way at Long Beach Airport

The Long Beach Fuel Consortium broke ground and began construction of the long awaited fuel storage upgrade project at Long Beach airport (LGB). In addition to solving a fuel supply issue this state of the art 200,000 gallon fuel storage facility was designed with convenience safety performance and the environment in mind. "This facility will provide airlines a greater level of comfort due to the increased storage capacity at the airport." says Glenn Ray Managing Partner of the Consortium and President of Million Air Long Beach. The new facility is designed with a Foam Fire Suppressant System which is unique to the airport. The entire footprint is enveloped with a perimeter fence providing added security. This new infrastructure has been designed to cater to the air carriers

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What's Up With Spirit?

Rover Hasn't Sent Data; Scientists Investigating

After all the hoopla with the Spirit Mars rover's landing and first exploration of the red planet, recent news about some communication problems may put a damper on NASA's starry mood. The Spirit rover has stopped transmitting data from Mars, NASA mission controllers said Thursday, but there were signs it is still operating at a basic level. Flight-team engineers for NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Mission were encouraged Thursday morning when Spirit sent a simple radio signal acknowledging that the rover had received a transmission from Earth. However, the team is still trying to diagnose the cause of earlier communications difficulties that have prevented any data being returned from Spirit since early Wednesday.

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Klyde Morris 01.23.04

Klyde Expresses More Love and Admiration (NOT!) for CBS

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2003 Not So Bad: 4,743 New Airline Pilots Hired!

AIR, Inc. has released total year airline pilot hiring numbers for 2003 this month in its 2004 Airline Pilot Hiring Forecast, attached. The forecast reflects the history of U.S. pilot hiring from 1996 through 2004E, organized by different career categories: major, national, jet regional, non-jet regional, upstart, and training. According to its forecast, AIR, Inc. estimates up to 6,500 new airline pilot positions for 2004. “The straight math average for the last 12 months predicts 4,300 new pilot positions for 2004, which should go higher depending on the domestic and international economies, and two other main forces, pilot retirement, and airline growth,” said Kit Darby, President of AIR, Inc. “In the final analysis, the actual numbers for airline pilot hiring

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CAE and Flight Options Sign Major Training Agreement

Three-year Contract Valued At US$28 million

F light Options, LLC will soon begin training all of the company's pilots at CAE SimuFlite's Dallas- Fort Worth center thanks to an agreement announced on Tuesday. The exclusive three-year agreement, with an option for two more years, is the single largest ever for CAE SimuFlite. The three-year deal, which becomes fully effective in February, is valued at approximately US$28 million (C$35 million). If exercised, the additional two-year contract option could bring the value to US$48 million (C$61 million) over five years. Based in Cleveland, Ohio, Flight Options, LLC is the world's fastest growing fractional provider and employs over 1300 professionals nationwide. Flight Options offers fractional shares and leases in i

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NASA Chief Sees Green

Says 2005 Proposed Budget Is $16.2 Billion  

Last week, President Bush launched a new, aggressive space initiative. This week, NASA's new budget has been beefed-up in order to accomplish this lofty goal. In more specific terms, the agency's proposed budget for fiscal 2005 will be $16.2 billion, a 5.6 percent increase meant to jump-start President Bush's plan for missions to the moon and Mars. NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe said his agency was well-placed to begin the ambitious space exploration program, even with the shuttle fleet grounded since the Feb. 1 Columbia disaster and no clear indication for when the shuttle fleet will resume flight. "In many ways, we're probably better positioned right now than we might have been otherwise," O'Keefe told r

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Delta AirElite Adds Citation X To Fleet

Jet Based In San Jose

Delta AirElite Business Jets announced on Wednesday it has added a new Citation X business jet to its operating certificate. The aircraft, which is based at the San Jose (CA)International Airport, joins Delta AirElite's fleet through a charter management agreement. The company says charter management agreements allow it to increase aircraft availability without large capital commitments and to offer on-demand charter service on a broad base of high-quality, well-maintained corporate jets. The eight-seat, 3,300nm Citation X joins Delta AirElite Business Jets' diverse fleet, including Bombardier Challenger, Learjet, Gulfstream and Cessna Aircraft. The company claims it has over 400 business jets positioned throughout the United States.

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EAA Sweepstakes Winner Is One Happy Camper

Florida Pilot Wins Sonex Kit

It sure pays to be an EAA member these days, as one lucky homebuilder recently found out. James "Jim" Ross, Citra, Florida, is the lucky winner of a complete Sonex Kit and builder's package in EAA's 2003 Membership Sweepstakes. His name was randomly drawn from over 150,000 entries on Thursday, January 15 and publicly announced on January 21. In a few weeks, he'll receive the kit, provided by Sonex Ltd., along with instrumentation and accessories, from Aircraft Spruce & Specialty. Jim was on the golf course when EAA President Tom Poberezny called with the good news on January 20. "I didn't believe Linda (his wife of 45 years) that the president of EAA had called until I saw EAA on the caller ID," he chuckled. "So I called Tom back, of co

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There's No Place Like Home For The XV-3

World's First Tiltrotor Aircraft Returns To Texas

History rolled into Bell Helicopter's Flight Research Center at Arlington Municipal Airport on Thursday when a tractor trailer loaded with ancient aircraft parts and pieces was eagerly greeted by Bell employees and retirees.  The precious cargo contained the parts of the Bell XV-3, the world's first successful tiltrotor aircraft. Over the next two years, Bell employees and volunteers will restore the aircraft to museum quality display condition. Bell Helicopter will keep the XV-3 in Fort Worth, until 2008, when the historic plane goes on permanent display at the U.S. Air Force Museum, Wright-Patterson A.F.B.,(OH). Bell officials pointed out while the XV-3 will never fly again; it remains an important part of Americ

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Bob Gilliland Talks About The Right Stuff

Woodbury Univ. "Test Flying the World's Fastest Airplanes" Program

Famed test pilot Bob Gilliland will share recollections of his high-flying career and take questions from the audience during a Sunday, February 8 event at Woodbury University in Burbank, (CA). "Test Flying the World's Fastest Airplanes" will be held Sunday, February 8 at Woodbury University, 7500 Glenoaks Boulevard, Burbank. A cocktail and buffet reception will begin at 6 p.m., with a discussion and video presentation by Gilliland beginning at 7 p.m. Cost is $50 per person for the entire evening or $25 per person for the program only. Proceeds benefit Woodbury University's Library Associates, a volunteer organization dedicated to improving library services. Gilliland has logged more experimenta

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Iraq Gets ATC Face Lift

Raytheon Wins Contract For Air Traffic Management Systems 

On Wednesday, Raytheon Company announced it was awarded a contract to supply turnkey air traffic management systems for airports in Iraq. The initial award is for $10.5 million, with additional equipment options of up to $38.9 million.     Work under this contract will restore full, all weather air traffic control capability to the key commercial airports in Iraq and reestablish the infrastructure needed in order for Iraq to rejoin the international air traffic community. Raytheon will supply state-of-the-art navigation and landing aids, airfield lighting, airport meteorological equipment, as well its latest field-proven all solid-state, digital terminal area surveillance radars and Rayt

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UAL Flight Attendants Refuse to Sign Concessionary Contract

Union Questions Airline's Attempt to Cut Retiree Health Benefits

Just as the concessionary contract agreed to by United Airlines management last spring finally arrived in the offices of the carrier's flight attendant union, the Association of Flight Attendants alleges United management announced its intent to illegally cut retiree health benefits and raise retiree out of pocket costs, raising legal issues significant enough to jeopardize the signing of the concessionary agreement by union President Patricia Friend. Attorneys for the flight attendants say United management's deceitful actions call into question the product and validity of the concessionary negotiations. AFA is considering a number of legal actions in addition to not signing the contract, including: aski

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Saudi F-15 Crashes Into Air Base

Pilot, Navigator Killed As Jet Hits Building

A Saudi F-15 fighter-jet crashed into an air force base in the eastern part of this Middle Eastern country.The crash took place during a routine training flight in the Eastern Province on Wednesday. Various reports indicated the pilot and navigator were killed when the jet crashed into a building at the military base. An Egyptian national employed in the building's cafeteria was also killed in the crash. News reports indicated 500 air force cadets were on a base tour when the F-15 impacted the structure. Witness reports claim the aircraft crashed moments after takeoff. Saudi Arabia has about 150 F-15s, including the advanced F-15S procured in 1995 from the United States.  

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Certified: Alteon-Brisbane Maintenance Training Earns CAR-30 Cert

Alteon Training has received Australian CASA CAR-30 certification for its Boeing 737-700/800 Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (AME/LAME) training in its Brisbane Training Centre in Queensland, Australia. "We are happy to receive this certification. CAR-30 is a testament to our rigorous quality system that ensures effective training solutions," said Bill Gardner, Regional Vice President for Asia-Pacific. "We are delighted to offer technically excellent maintenance training solutions closer to our customers' base of operations." Alteon is offering full academics type-rating courses in Avionics, Engine, and Airframe for the 737-700/800 models utilizing desktop simulation and the latest generation of computer-based training. These courses are in addition to 737-700/800 fli

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IN TFR: 01/24

Demolition Operations NOTAM:  4/0507  Issued:  01/22/2004 13:23  Effective:  01/24/2004 15:00 - 01/24/2004 17:00  State:  IN  Facility:  ZID - INDIANAPOLIS (ARTCC),IN.  Type:  HAZARDS  Description:  CHARLESTON, IN. 

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Aero-News Quote Of The Day (01.23.04)

"In many ways, we're probably better positioned right now than we might have been otherwise. The accident really, really shook the foundation of this agency ... That's the perfect time, in many ways, in which to look at new directions."

Source: NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe commenting on the space agency's latest plan for the space shuttle fleet's return to flight.  

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ANN Free Classifieds Featured Ad: Christen Eagle Project

For Sale: Christen Eagle II Project

Christen Eagle II Project (File Photo, Below) 800 TT IO-360 200HP New MT 3 Blade Hooker Harn Logs, records, at FW Have upper and lower New wing kits in box. crank flg broken. Engine mount gd. Nds new Canopy bubble 815-218-3219 Exterior Quality: 10, Interior Quality: 10 Used, will sell for $28,888.00 (or best offer)

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