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NORAD advice for TFR's 02-01-15: AOPA just released a video of an interview with the NORAD commander and asked him, "What can GA pilots do to become more aware of TFR's?" According to Admiral Gortney, "Proper pre-flight preparation, proper briefs, proper execution, proper de-briefs, check weather, check NOTAMS, check for TFR's, check for obstructions, think about how you're going to fly, chair fly the flight, then go flying." (Actually, if you click on the Skyhaven weather page you can do all of that in less than five minutes... except for the go flying part.)

Fly a Cessna (refurbished) 172 for $99/hr 01-30-15: Is Sporty trying to outdo AOPA? AOPA is trying to sell the idea of flight schools buying (old) refurbished Cessna 152's for just under $100k... but you still have an old C-152 when you're done. In comes Sporty with their version of the rebuilt Cessna for flight schools. Pointing out the fact that most CFI's and students don't weigh 170 lbs, they have come up with their idea of a new affordable trainer, the 172LITE. For around $130k you get aCessna 172N era Skyhawk that has the back seat, carpets, and plastic instrument panel removed to give you a plane black steel boiler gauge instrument panel with plastic vinyl floors with a large cargo space for your flight bag and paraphernalia... not unless you have an EFB tablet.

Blizzard of 2015 01-29-15: Although the Notam said the airport was closed today, the cleanup crew has the area looking like it's ready to go.

Alton Bay Ice Airport1-27-15: Here's some information from David DeVries about the Alton Bay Ice Airport. Needless to say, today being the Blizzard of 2015, not too many airports are open. Landing on the ice is a unique experience that's shared by all types of planes but usually dominated by tail-draggers, Cherokee's and Skyhawks. Here's Dave's message: "ALTON BAY ICE RUNWAY IS OPEN (B18)  Alton Bay airport volunteer Paul LA Rochelle says the airport is open! You can get runway condition reports by calling 875-3498 for a recording.  You can also reach Paul at 455-7817 for more detailed information!  Runway is 1/19 and the frequency is 122.8.CLICK HERE TO SEE PICTURES OF ALTON BAY ICE AIRPORT Make sure you check the recording before you launch as the runway condition can change quickly due to warm temperatures or snow storms etc.. Paul and his gang are all volunteers paying for their own fuel and other related expenses. The best way to help would be to support the effort by Southern Maine aviation to raise money through a raffle. (See attached). The NHPA will also be financially supporting B18 again this year. David, NHPA.  If you know a pilot that is not a member of the NHPA please send them to our website to sign up, it's FREE!! WWW.NEWHAMPSHIREPILOTS.ORG".

Density Altitude on Mars 01-24-15: Density altitude is certainly a main part of our preflight before CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFOheading to the friendly skies. Tuning into the local AWOS quickly gives us an idea of what we can expect for take-off performance. However, recent articles have been talking about putting an AUAV on Mars. A remote RC helicopter that will be used to help explore the Martian landscape. Apparently the engineers and scientist at NASA have worked out the numbers for the design specifications of an CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFOAutonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. Compared to Earth, the Mars gravity is 3/8th and 100 times less atmosphere. According to the video, 2400 rpm and a 3.6 foot rotor blade will do the trick. One of the biggest concerns the designers have is landing the aircraft (which he refers to as 7 seconds of terror) after each daily mission. This project is part of the Mars 2020 Mission which includes landing a car size rover.

Alton Bay Ice Airport 01-22-15: SUPPORT THE MAINTENANCE OF THE ALTON BAY ICE CLICK HERE TO SEE POSTERRUNWAY 2015 ICE RUNWAY RAFFLE. Lots of COOL prizes, including 10 gallons of Aviation Fuel, Southern Maine Aviation Sweatshirt, 2015 SuperCub.Org Calendar.  Tickets are $2 ea, or 6 for $10. All proceeds go to the Alton Bay Airport manager (Paul LaRochelle) to help with the cost of plowing the runway. Drawing to be held January 31, 2015, at Southern Maine Aviation. You do not need to be present to win. All prizes must be collected by June 1, 2015. For more information or to buy tickets contact Southern Maine Aviation at  207-324-8919

UAV "Sense And Avoid" 01-22-15:  The Air Force and Army seem to be going full steam ahead on developing the technology for advanced UAV's like the Predator. Here's some verbiage from a recent article. "The DoD has divided its SAA activities into GBSAA and ABSAA. The US Army is leading the GBSAA effort, while the US Air Force (USAF) is overseeing development of a common ABSAA, with the US Navy (USN) contributing heavily to the latter."  (When it comes to acronyms, you can't beat the military.) Recent photo's on the net look something like the picture to the right. However, in a recent add for a company called Quadrant plastics, they show sample pictures of advanced plastics development in land, air, and sea. The air sample appears to be some flavor of the Predator that does not appear on the web... yet... I wonder if it has morphing ailerons and flaps...

 
 
Fly a Cessna 152 for $64/hr
01-19-15:  According to Jamie Beckett, AOPA Ambassador, you can fly the newly refurbished 1979, just like new, Cessna 152 for $64/hr in a club environment. They have three yellow C152's all refurbished from a company called Aviat. They even talk about boiler gauges as an option.
Density Altitude -3200 feet 01-11-15:  That's right, minus 3200 feet. I've read a lot of articles that talk about density altitude and its negative effect on aircraft performance. Some FBO's out west keep the fuel tanks on their 150's and 172's at half tanks to keep the weight down as much as possible. Actually, some FBO's around here keep the tanks at half. If everybody weighed the FAA standard of 170 pounds it probably wouldn't be much of a problem. If you're at an airport where the elevation is 4000 feet and the temperatures is 99°F you might find yourself with a 7,000 foot density altitude. However, listening to the ASOS at Skyhaven the other day I heard them report the density altitude of minus 3,200 feet. Needless to say, climbing at over 1,000 fpm is not unusual in a Skyhawk in this kind of weather.

DAWN at 25,000 mph 01-10-15:  2015 must be the year of space probe climaxes. This one was launched back in 2007 a year after the New Horizons. VESTAUnlike the New Horizons spacecraft this one is powered by a Solar Array to provide a large amount of electricity to power ion thrusters. A unique feature of this thruster is that it allows the spacecraft to slow down and enter orbit of the objects it's visiting. The other probes do a fly-by.Dwarf Planet Ceres It also made a flyby of Mars and took some pictures in 2009, then continued on to the asteroid called Vesta in 2011 where it slowed down with the xenon-ion thrusters and entered orbit for about a year surveying the surface at a low (130 miles) and high (420 miles) orbits. The map is so detailed, all the geography has names of the craters, mountains, cliffs, etc. In 2012 the thrusters fired up and broke orbit to head for a dwarf planet called Ceres on March 6, 2015. It will fly several orbit heights and get as close as 233 miles away from the surfaces taking high resolution 3D pictures. Their website says after the primary mission the spacecraft will be left in orbit. They didn't say why, but I suspect they will have run out of thruster fuel. However, the solar array should be ok. Maybe there's a secondary mission we haven't heard about yet...

FAA Safety Seminar at Sanford   01-08-15: Title: Don't Get Left Out in the Cold, Topic: Winter Operations with CLICK HERE TO REGISTEREmphasis on Both Mechanical and Flight Considerations. Date and Time: Saturday, January 31, 2015, CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT ABOUT CHILIstarting at 10:00. Brief Description: Southern Maine Aviation Flight Instructor Sue Tholen along with special guest speaker Byron Danforth will lead discussions relevant to safe winter operations, with emphasis on mechanical and flight considerations. This Event will be held in the Southern Maine Aviation "Event Hangar" in the same building as "The Cockpit Café". This Event will include Southern Maine Aviation's 5 Alarm Chili Cook-Off beginning at noon. CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO.

Happy New Year EAA225’ers! 01-06-15:  Hello Everyone, Pres John Ricciotti reminds us in the following letter of our annual Holiday Party.  Please read and if attending, please reply to John.  Hope to see as many that can attend this fun time with fellow members and guests. Regards, Gerry
EAA 225 Pot Luck holiday dinner - Saturday, January 10th 2015 - CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO

New Horizons at 50,000 mph 01-05-15:  Another space probe is starting to get some news attention and articles in different publications recently. This one was launched back in 2006 and is a NASA supported project operated by Johns Hopkins University in Laurel, Md. They have just recently switched from hibernation mode to "active" mode. Some of the articles talk about this space craft to be one of the fastest ever launched reaching the moon in 1/10th the time is took the Apollo astronauts. It also picked up more speed when it made the launch date window that allowed them to slingshot around Jupiter and speed up to around 50,000 mph. The radio signal from New Horizons, currently more than 2.9 billion miles from Earth, needed four hours and 26 minutes to reach NASA’s Deep Space Network station in Canberra, Australia. Besides carrying around seven instruments and a nuclear powered (plutonium-238) radioisotope thermal generator for electricity, it also has a container of the ashes of Clyde Tombaugh, the man who discovered Pluto in 1930. I wonder if he had that in his will...

Sanderson's Field  12-30-14:  Ted Sanderson, the owner and life long resident of Sanderson Field airport in Greenland NH has passed away. A life long pilot, retired from Eastern Airlines and flew with the NH Air National Guard since 1956. Sanderson's Field is famous for the yearly Yankee Ultra Light fly-ins. Click here to see some pics of one of their fly-ins.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION

Night Flight  12-27-14: Maybe I should of asked Santa for a new camera. A two second delay on the shutter speed made for interesting night pictures. Although the pics look more like Christmas lighting than aerial pics you can see how the Skyhaven runway stands out in the darkness with the the PAPI's and the transition from white to yellow on the runway edge lighting.

Taranis Stealth Top Secret Drone  12-21-14: Popular Science recently did a spread about military stealth drones and how the superiority of the global air space now held by the U.S. and Europe will be changing the strategy of military war planners. I recently read a industrial business and manufacturing article about the existence of a global disconnect between countries, governments, military with business and industry. While governments and military are talking about continued unrest between countries and superpowers, the global businesses and industries are working not only with Europe but with Asia and Russia in all types of products from clothing to aircraft. A good example of multinational collaboration would be the International Space Station. Popular Science was so intrigued with the UAV Drones they made a computer mockup of the Taranis that almost looks real. I thought the PVC looking nose gear and the severely scuffed floor gave it away. I would bet the actual floor of the Taranis hangar would be spotless and any markings would be kept in perfect condition.

VFR In December  12-16-14: The METAR weather map shows an awful lot of red, pink and blue dots lately. I heard a rumor that the sun might shine for one day and quickly found myself an airplane to fly and take advantage of the moment. A friend of mind the other day said, "Where do you go?" I said where do you go when you take your model "T" Ford for a ride. He said oh, I go down the street and stop in to see some friends and shoot the breeze. I told him I do the same, only at 2000 feet above the road. Here's a few pics from a recent VFR flight.

270 MPH SPEED RECORD  12-12-14: I recently received an email about the Hennessey VenomCLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO ON THE HENNESSEYGT that claims to have set a speed record of 270 mph. It took extensive engineering and design analysis to establish the aerodynamics and components that went into this car. It also took a 427 cu-in V8 that was pumped up to 1244 bhp @ 6600 rpm spec to do it. If you want to buy one you'll need a little over $1,000,000. But you still won't have the fastest street legal car. That belongs to the BADD GT car that has the standing SPEED MACHINE - CLICK HERE TO SEE VIDEOmile record of 280+ mph with 1800 hp V8. They are looking to break 300 mph. That's all pretty impressive, but... as a pilot, if I had a couple of hundred thousand bucks burning a hole in my pocket and I was looking for a speed machine... well that might make a down payment on the street legal BADD GT (Ford Gt conversion). How about if I spent it on a Glasair III. It only has 300 hp but has a top speed of 290 mph and cruises at 278 mph at 8000 feet which is well within the FAA speed limit of 288 mph and I can get one for less that $200k. I'll race ya to Florida and I'll give you a few hours head start.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO
12-6-14: The OUT-OF-THE-BLUE SCHOLARSHIP FOUNDATION, in an effort to assist deserving flight students and promote the love of flCLICK HERE FOR MORE INFOying, will award financial assistance to Private Pilot License candidates based upon an applicant's merit, performance, and financial need.  The Foundation will award 50% of the REMAINING cost of achieving a Private Pilot License to students who have achieved solo status, up to: 60 hours total flight time, or $3,000 per student, whichever occurs first. 
Navy Chaplain Phillip Stephens and his wife Celisse, the first Out of the Blue flight scholarship recipients, join the exclusive ranks of licensed pilots on Saturday November 8th, 2014. Lt. and Mrs. Stephens completed their flight training at Hampton Airfield and successfully obtained their Private Pilot licenses on the same day. CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION.

EAA 225 Newsletter  12-6-14: Here's the EAA newsletter from Gerry Peterson: "Hello Members & Friends of EAA 225, Here is the latest version of our Chapter Newsletter. Enjoy! Regards, Gerry"

Say Hello To The A-10 Warthog  12-5-14: Back in February of 2014 Avweb had an article about the end of the A-10 Warthog and it was being decommissioned to make way for high tech replacements. Hmmm, what new plane could take the place of the famous A-10? The answer is apparently that there is no plane in the U.S. military inventory that can come close to replacing the A-10. That's why a whole squadron of them is in the middle-east. Articles are popping up all over the internet about the 163rd Expeditionary Fighter Squadron. The unit, also known as the “Blacksnakes”, is part of the Air National Guard’s 122nd Fighter Wing, based at Fort Wayne, Ind. The squadron is a part of the newly reactivated 332ndAir Expeditionary Group. The group was reactivated on Nov. 16 to participate in Operation Inherent Resolve.

EAA 225 Meeting  11-30-14: Here's an email from Gerry about the upcoming meeting for the EAA 225 chapter. Looks like Todds house is pretty deep into the woods. I've been out to Mount Blue Job before but I never realized there was anything beyond that. Can you say "Blue Job Mountain." Here's Gerry's email:  "Hello Everyone, Chapter member Todd Scruton has graciously offered his shop/home up for our monthly meeting Tuesday evening, December 9th.  Todd lives in Strafford, NH; just west of Rochester via Rt 202A. I am enclosing a recent email from him with directions: Hi Gerry, Second Tuesday of the month is the standard meeting date right? So the 9th at 6pm. Dress warm, the shop isn't heated yet! But after everyone has had their fill of the zenith we can move into the house. The address is as follows. Todd Scruton 673 first crown point rd. Strafford NH, 03884 A word of caution for those using GPS, if you are traveling from the west or north it will steer you wrong and try to take you over a class six road. Take a good look at a map before you leave! If you have any more questions just call. 603-833-0271 Thanks, Todd  Regards, Gerry"

MASSIVE HANGAR DOORS  11-24-14: How do you open hangar doors? Well around here at Skyhaven, you push a button that says up, or down, or stop. But what about very large hangar doors that are on hangars for commercial airlines? In a recent article about special industrial computers called PLC's (Programmable Logic Controllers), they are basically saying that at some large airports the control panel to open the massive doors, 130 x 90 feet x 74,000 lbs, is a computer screen. 
Similar to the aircraft that go into these hangars, the door control systems are "glass panels." Levers and button, switches and relays are being replaced by solid state components that provide feedback information to the computer with all kinds of data about the doors condition, location all fed with cameras, laser and infrared sensors. The computer then controls the motors and mechanism required to move the doors.

SnowGate on 33  11-21-14: Everybody is getting ready for winter. If you didn't change the oil on your snow blower last spring, it's probably a good idea to do it pretty soon or you'll end up going two years on the same oil. Speaking of oil, it's also that time of year to plug in the engine oil heaters. Don't forget to plug in after your flight. By the way, that green fence is a "snow fence" and from what I understand, there is a specification on its size and dimensions from the taxiway. I believe the idea is to deflect the wind so that the taxiway will have minimum snow accumulation. I'll take another picture in January to see how it's working. Click on the runway numbers below to see some pics of the new runway.

Flying at 34,500 m.p.h.  11-14-14: Space travel these days seems to be happening mostly in the movie theaters. However, for the past 10 years since its launch, CLICK HERE TO ENLARGEan unmanned spacecraft (is that an USV?) has been circling the inner parts of the solar system to gain enough momentum to rendezvous with a comet called 67P somewhere out beyond the orbit of the planet Mars. The spacecraft is so far away, it takes 30 minutes for the radio signal (traveling at 186,282 miles per second) to reach it. Thanks to 17th century mathematician Isaac Newton for mathematically defining the laws of motion and gravity, engineers and scientist are able to calculate with orbital mechanics the trajectory of the spacecraft and use two nearby passes of earth and one pass by Mars to use a slingshot effect to accelerate to 34,500 mph required for the rendezvous. I wonder if manned spaceships will have a "Direct-To" button on their navigational screens?

EAA 225 Newsletter  11-10-14: It’s been 4 months since we last had a meeting in Sanford, Maine and our November meeting will be hosted by Southern Maine Aviation in Sanford. The November meeting will be held on Veterans Day (Tuesday, November 11th) and as a tribute to our veterans, they will eat our EAA 225 barbecue
for free.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD

Are You Ready for Glass?  11-05-14: The days of analog boiler gauges seems to be taking a back seat to what's being called the "Glass Panel." I had an opportunity to fly a light sport with a full Dynon EFIS-D1000 (Electronic Flight Monitoring System) and EMS (Engine Monitoring System) with auto-pilot. For some pilots, having all that automation in a light sport is a contradiction. Give me a six-pack, com-nav vor and a transponder and you're good to go. All right, maybe a Garmin GPS for nav instead of the VOR. Anything more than that is going to be a distraction. Besides, if you are going for a little ride for that so called $100 hamburger, you'll be able to see your airport of destination shortly after take-off. But if you're interested in a $300 hamburger, now you have some time to play around with the glass panel. Getting used to the little rectangular computer screens with all the sliding and scrolling bars framing the screen and spattered with various types of data in strategic locations takes a little getting used to. Dynon has a unique feature where the multifunction buttons are along the bottom of the screen so they can use the computer screen to show the name of the button function relative to the different screen pages that are active. And if you don't have enough information to satisfy your wow factor, you have the option to split the EFIS screen and add more data. Don't forget to look out the window every now and then so you don't overfly your destination.
 
 


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