On March 8, 2008, Cessna completed the first flight of its Model 162 SkyCatcher. The one-hour SkyCatcher flight departed from Cessna Aircraft Field Airport and consisted of flight maneuvers evaluating the controllability and stability of the aircraft. Test pilot Dale Bleakney, of Cessna Engineering, then proceeded to Mid-Continent Airport, where the SkyCatcher will continue development testing. “The first flight of the SkyCatcher is a significant step ahead toward our goal of bringing an affordable training aircraft to market,” said Cessna CEO Jack Pelton. The SkyCatcher is priced at $111,500 and is expected to reach cruise speeds of 118 knots with a maximum range of 470 nm. Visit www.cessna.com.
G1000 Synthetic Vision!
Garmin Synthetic Vision Technology (SVT) has been STC’d by the FAA. Designed to integrate with the G1000 avionics suite, SVT depicts 3-D terrain, obstacles and traffic on the G1000’s PFD so that the avionics panel replicates what pilots see outside the cockpit on a clear day. Garmin VP of Marketing Gary Kelly said, “SVT brings an unprecedented level of integration and awareness to pilots of G1000-equipped aircraft.” Learn more at www.garmin.com/aviation.
Systems developer Alakai Technologies and systems integrator and safety analyst, CAP Aviation Consulting Group, announced a contract with SATSair to provide its fleet with Flight Data Monitoring (FDM) and an Engine Trend Monitoring System, which offers an Internet-accessible digital flight-data recorder and data-analysis services. “SATSair is pleased to equip our fleet with GA-FDM technology and to help bring this important safety innovation to general aviation,” said SATSair CEO Steve Hanvey. “Trend monitoring is fundamental to the successful operation of our air cab fleet, and the addition of GA-FDM enhances the monitoring of our Cirrus fleet.” More info is available at www.ga-fdm.com, www.alakai1.com, www.capacg.com and www.satsair.com.
Avidyne Gets STC
Avidyne received an STC from the FAA for the retrofit of its Envision Integrated Flight Deck in Cessna 400–series piston twins. “The market potential for Envision on the Cessna 400 Series is extraordinary,” said Southern Star Aviation President Tom Greer. “Avidyne has terrific products that our customers find easy to use and that enhance the value of their aircraft.” More information is at www.avidyne.com and www.staraviation.com.
On March 14, 2008, the FAA granted TSO authorization for Aspen Avionics’ Evolution Pilot and Pro Primary Flight Displays. “It’s remarkable how much a small, focused team can accomplish in short order,” said Aspen CEO John Uczekaj. “Aspen is living proof that entrepreneurship is alive and well in the aviation industry.” Learn more by visiting www.aspenavionics.com.
Women In Aviation
More than 3,200 pilots, mechanics, flight attendants, airport managers, and students participated in the 19th annual Women in Aviation conference in San Diego, Calif. Cessna awarded an $18,000 scholarship to Tina Willman-Hammar to pursue a Cessna Citation Encore type rating and a $7,000 scholarship to Krista Ambats to earn a private pilot license. The Commercial Airline Pilot Training (CAPT) program awarded a training scholarship valued at $22,495 to Yuko Hasegawa. Visit www.wai.org.
Tempest announced the formation of Volare Carburetors, which finalized the acquisition of Precision Airmotive’s MSA line of carburetors and spare parts. The new company will be headquartered in Gibsonville, N.C., and all Volare MSA carburetors and components will be marketed under the Tempest brand. More information is available at www.tempestplus.com.
New Cirrus Program
The recently launched Cirrus Maintenance program will come standard with the purchase of an aircraft directly from Cirrus. The full-service plan extends through 24 months or 600 flight hours, whichever comes first, and covers new airplanes ordered and delivered since January 1, 2008. “We believe Cirrus Maintenance is the next step toward easing the customer experience and increasing customer utility,” said Cirrus Chairman Alan Klapmeier. “Cirrus felt the need to take this leap to get more people flying airplanes and, ultimately, grow the industry.” More details are available at www.cirrusdesign.com.
After successfully completing a series of test flights in the Toxo, Composite Aeronautic Group of Zaragoza, Spain, has received certification of its LSA in Cincinnati, Ohio. Aircraft features include a Dynon FlightDEK-D180, Garmin 496 and BRS parachute system. For more, visit www.toxo.aero.
Cessna Picks Telex
Cessna has selected Telex ANR headsets as standard equipment on its largest-yet business jet, the Citation Columbus. “Not only does this reaffirm the Airman 850 as the leading nonbattery-operated ANR headset,” stated John Weeks of Telex, “but it also demonstrates a mutual commitment to the future of our partnership. Of course, technology will have changed considerably by the time this new aircraft starts production, and as always, Telex will be front and center with innovative, professional-grade products in step with the industry’s demands.” Learn more at www.telex.com and www.cessna.com.
New World Records!
On March 15, 2008, at Compton Woodley Airport, two 16-year-olds from Tomorrow’s Aeronautical Museum (TAM) flew into the record books. Kelly Anyadiki became the youngest African-American female to solo in four different aircraft on the same day. Jonathan Strickland established a new record as the youngest African-American male to solo six different airplanes, and also set a second record for soloing six airplanes plus one helicopter all on the same day. “The new world records set by the kids are an example of where the past meets the present and the future!” said Robin Petgrave, TAM’s founder. The not-for-profit organization offers aviation-themed after-school programs for more than 800 kids. Instead of earning money, kids earn museum dollars, which they can apply toward flight instruction. Visit www.tamuseum.org.
Classic Aviator Watches
Revue Thommen, a Swiss watch and aviation instrumentation manufacturer, has been producing exquisite and high-quality watches for more than 150 years. From its roots as a pocket watch and wristwatch producer in the 1850s, it expanded to produce aviation instruments in the 1920s. The company’s ergonomically designed and practical Airspeed line, consisting of the Classic, Xlarge and recently introduced Flyback Collections, reflects its tradition for technical accuracy and perfection. Among the Airspeed line’s features are antireflective crystal faces, large day and date displays, a “Flyback” function and automatic chronographs. For more, call (800) 345-7599 or visit www.revue-thommen.us.
WildCharge is poised to revolutionize electric-power delivery to mobile devices with its safe, wire-free, electric-power technology, which includes adapters for the Motorola RAZR V3, Apple iPhone, Apple iPod, BlackBerry Pearl and BlackBerry 8800. The wire-free WildCharger charging pad, winner of this year’s CES Best of Innovations Award, is a sleek, flat charging pad that delivers up to 15 watts of power, capable of simultaneously charging up to four small devices, such as cell phones, MP3 players, digital cameras and similar electronic devices. For more, call (888) 494-5324 or visit www.wildcharge.com.
New From Garmin! GPSMAP 495
Spankin’ new from Garmin, the GPSMAP 495 is for pilots who want many of the same features as the popular 496, but at a fraction of the cost. The 495 incorporates the same higher-resolution terrain database as is found in the 496 (but lacks the 496’s weather features and City Navigator). The land graphics have more than 10 times as much data as other Garmin handhelds and vividly display proximity hazards. In aviation mode, the 495 offers terrain and obstacle alerting, pop-up alerts and customizable minimum clearance limits that give audible terrain alerts at specified altitudes. Smart Airspace automatically highlights airspace close to the pilot’s current altitude. Like the 496, the 495 has an increased update rate that’s five times faster than other handheld GPS devices. SafeTaxi and AOPA’s Airport Directory help pilots navigate unfamiliar taxiways and airports. For more, call (800) 800-1020 or visit www.garmin.com.
Flight Bags Get An Extreme Makeover
Responding to customer feedback, Sporty’s top-selling Flight Gear bags have been redesigned from the ground up to offer improved organization. The new line, which consists of five different bags, has an all-new look and dozens of innovative features, including stronger, more-water-resistant fabric; ultrastrong metal hardware that won’t bend or break; a stylish, two-color exterior; pockets for GPS, sunglasses, cell phone and other devices; movable organizers that allow you to customize your bag’s interior; and a scratch-preventing, soft-lined interior. Flight Gear bags still feature double-stitched seams, a patented split-flap transceiver pocket that accommodates the antenna and a wraparound handle that can support weights in excess of 200 pounds. Padded pockets protect valuable headsets when you’re not using them. Custom embroidery is available with up to three initials, and all Flight Gear bags come with an industry-leading six-year warranty. For more, call (800) SPORTYS or visit www.sportys.com.
Instrument Covers Go Glass
New technology requires new products, and flight training is no exception. Sporty’s has developed instrument covers to work with glass-panel airplanes—ideal for primary or instrument training. Designed for the Garmin G1000, these opaque, static-cling stickers cover sections of the primary flight display to simulate instrument failures for the attitude indicator, heading indicator, airspeed and altitude tape, and vertical speed indicator. Stickers can simulate warning alerts and caution alerts, such as low oil pressure, low voltage or low fuel. For more, call (800) SPORTYS or visit www.sportys.com.
AvShop has just developed and released a new line of aviation-themed jewelry. Intended for aviation buffs who like to look good while flying, the line includes earrings, necklaces and complete sets. The Sterling Silver line includes biplane-, taildragger- and attitude-themed pieces. The 14K Gold Line features Twin Commanche, P-51 and Cessna pieces, as well as propeller-themed jewelry. For more, call (866) 9AVSHOP or visit www.avshop.com.