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Aviation North Expo in Fairbanks Oct. 15-17


Aviation North Expo
Fairbanks Princess Riverside Lodge
October 15-17, 2009

Annual statewide aviation conference focuses on safety and education for pilots & mechanics and offers information forum for airport personnel.

Aviation Security, Aging Aircraft and Airports featured at ANE 09

FAIRBANKS, Alaska. - After months of planning and preparation, Fairbanks will again be the gathering place for the aviation community from across the state. Pilots, aircraft owners, mechanics and airport professionals will assemble to listen to national and regional speakers discuss a wide range of aviation topics during the three-day conference, October 15-17 at the Fairbanks Princess Riverside Lodge.

Aviation security is near the top of the agenda, following security directives and a proposed Large Aircraft Security Program, issued by the Transportation Security Agency. Pilots and airport operators were unhappy with the government's initial proposals, and are anxious to hear what plans are now being developed to address security. "We are particularly concerned with how proposed security procedures will impact operations at the rural airports across Alaska," according to Tom George, Alaska Regional Representative of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. "While we support the goal of security, it can't be at the expense of our ability to access our aircraft," he said. Organizers have designed a panel with representatives from TSA, and the statewide airport system operated by the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities. The opening session of Friday, Oct 16, will address this issue.

Modernization of the aviation system in Alaska is a theme spread through the conference. A four-hour workshop, "Equipping for NextGen" is planned to help aircraft owners learn about upgrading their aircraft to be able to use the next generation of avionics. Speakers from the FAA will describe the infrastructure and services have been rolled out in Alaska over the past year, while equipment manufacturers will describe the new units they are building to enhance aviation navigation and the direct broadcast of weather and traffic to the cockpit. A loan program, unique to Alaska run by the State Division of Investments will also be discussed. In other seminars, new instrument approaches, guided by GPS technology, and instrument flight routes will be presented.

Mechanics and aircraft homebuilders will hear an old-world craftsman, Kent White, a specialist in metal working from Nevada City, California. Also known as The Tin Man, White will be presenting seminars on gas welding, sheetmetal forming and fabrication. In addition to lecturing during the conference, he will put on a two-day workshop, allowing 12 people to get some hands-on training with this master craftsman.

Joining him in the maintenance seminar track is Marv Nuss from the FAA Small Aircraft Directorate in Kansas City, Mo. Nuss will talk about maintaining aircraft as the fleet ages. He will also report on the results of a destructive analysis of a Navajo aircraft, a popular
commuter aircraft type used in Alaska. In this type of test, an aircraft is taken apart to look for hidden problems that might not be
easily detected during normal maintenance. This information gives mechanics a good idea of what to look for when they inspect the aircraft
during routine maintenance.

AOPA Air Safety Foundation's Chief Flight Instructor, JJ Greenway, will return to Alaska with new presentations focusing on GPS use and accident analysis. Also on the program is FAA FAASTeam Manager, John Steuernagle, to present Weather Training: There's an App for That. Other topics include: Getting Found: ELT's and other Technologies, by Adam White, President of the Alaska Airmen's Association, and Keeping Your Medical: A focus on Vision by Dr. Ingrid Zimmer-Galler from Johns Hopkins.

The conference has doubled the number of seminars focused on developing and sustaining a healthy airport in a community. David Ketchum, with Airside, an airports consulting company from Washington state, will present on community land use planning, to protect your airport from encroachment, and Protecting Lessee Investments thorough Minimum Standards.

Other activities include a operations tour of Fairbanks International Airport, an update on the Alaska Aviation System Plan and a look at how an airport is designed from the ground up. These seminars are organized by a new group, the Alaska Airports Association. This group is dedicated to the enhancement of airport operations and management, and is the first Alaska based association in the state to focus solely on improving our airport system. They will have an association meeting during the conference.

The aviation tradeshow will open with an Exhibitor Reception on Thursday evening. In addition to looking at the latest electronics gadget, or planning your next engine overhaul, you will be able to find out where the FAA installed weather cameras last summer, look at the latest
advances in aircraft avionics, and more. The trade show is open to the public Friday & Saturday with a nominal entrance fee.

Be sure to recommend to your non-pilot friends to check out the Flying Companion Seminar on Saturday, Oct 17. This year the Ninety-Nines are offering an eight hour program. In addition to learning the basics about flying, participants will get hands on experience with a flight simulator, and real-time practice on the radios.

We are pleased to host the Wright Brothers Master Pilot award programs at the ANE Awards Banquet. Two master pilots will join the ranks of this prestigious program this year, Pete Haggland and Tim Sander. Following the brief awards ceremony, aviation humorist Charlie Thompson will entertain the audience with his talk: Gunships, Grits and Granny. Tickets for this event must be purchased in advance to reserve a seat at this Friday night event, which will be held at the Westmark Hotel.

This conference is dedicated to promoting general aviation in Alaska. Aviation North Expo is sponsored by a wide range of industry,
government, and aviation associations. Major sponsors include: The FAA Safety Team and Fairbanks Flight Standards District Office, the National Weather Service, Alaska Airports Association, Alaska Airmen's Association, Alaskan Aviation Safety Foundation, FAA Airports Division, Aero Recip, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, Alaska Department of Transportation, EAA, Wipaire, City of Fairbanks, UAF Aviation Technology Program and many more.

A $69/night conference room rate is available at the Princess Hotel. It is a registration event, and seating for some of the workshops is
limited. A student rate is available to encourage participation by those enrolled in an aviation program, with a limited number of student
scholarships available courtesy of the Fairbanks Curling Lions Club.

For information on ANE or to register, visit the event website at www.aviationnorth.org or call
877-427-5599. Mark October 15-17 on your calendar, and make plans to attend!
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