Two new FBOs opened this month in Spain. On January 10, TAG Aviation Espana was officially inaugurated at Madrid Torrejon Airport. Then on Sunday, Swissport Executive Aviation opened a facility at Malaga International Airport. The TAG facility, which is located in a new building at Torrejon, offers full business aircraft handling services, as well as flight planning and aircraft charter and management.
The FAA has awarded FlightSafety International’s new Farnborough, England training center a Part 142 certificate, allowing crews to complete FAA-approved training at the UK facility. For pilots from outside the U.S., this provides a way to avoid the considerable inconvenience and delays associated with U.S. immigration procedures. The 92,000-sq-ft building opened last year and can accommodate up to 15 full-motion simulators.
Charter broker Air Partner has entered the flight-planning market with the creation of a new division called Flight-Operations.com. The venture is based at Air Partner’s worldwide headquarters near London Gatwick Airport. Flight-Operations.com is led by Tim Lester, the former deputy managing director of rival flight-planning company Baseops.
Tomorrow’s public hearing at Washington Dulles Airport on the FAA’s proposal to make the Washington-Baltimore air defense identification zone (ADIZ) permanent is expected to draw comments from the leaders of at least three general aviation groups.
Full FAA certification of the super-midsize Hawker 4000 (neé Horizon) has slipped again–from the end of last year to early next month, a Raytheon Aircraft spokesman told AIN yesterday. The delay, he said, stems from the company recently opting to install lightning protection on RC5–the function and reliability test aircraft–before, instead of after, FAA approval.
Investigations into two accidents involving Eurocopter AS 350A and AS 350B2 helicopters led the NTSB to determine that the hydraulic pump drive belt (P/N 704A33690004) prematurely failed in flight. Additionally, an inquiry into the FAA’s Service Difficulty Report database found that 43 failures and/or replacements of hydraulic pump drive belts with that part number occurred from February 1995 to the present.
Southampton, England-based Club328 has launched a block-charter program called SkyClub. The entry-level package is 10 hours in a Raytheon Premier I for £30,000 ($52,500). Last month, Club328 bought four pre-owned Premier Is from Raytheon Aircraft. SkyClub customers will also be able to buy blocks of hours in its other aircraft: a Dornier 328Jet and a Dornier 328 turboprop twin, as well as a Hawker 700 and a Hawker 800.
Two recent accidents in icing conditions involving Cessna Caravans have prompted the NTSB to issue more recommendations for the high-wing turboprop single.
French engine manufacturer Snecma has revealed plans to develop a turbofan engine to power business and regional jets. It has started developing a core engine demonstrator called the SM-X that, if a full development program is launched, would yield a powerplant producing between 8,500 and 10,000 pounds of thrust. Ground testing of the core is set for the second half of next year.
With White House budget cuts restored by Congress, NASA is returning to its roots by restructuring its aeronautics research mission directorate to emphasize cutting-edge fundamental research, as well as protecting its far-flung test facilities as national assets.