Although a strike last summer at Learjet facilities in Wichita held down aircraft deliveries in the third quarter of this year compared with the same period last year, Bombardier announced yesterday that it delivered 143 business jets in the first nine months of its fiscal year ending October 31, compared with 132 in the corresponding nine months last year.
AIN has confirmed that the Carlyle Group, a Washington-based global private equity firm, is one of three bidders for Raytheon Aircraft. The other potential buyers are Cerberus Capital Management, a New York-headquartered investment firm, and Toronto, Canada, holding company Onex.
It wasn’t immediately clear how the Grob SPn light business jet program will be affected by yesterday’s crash of the second prototype near the company’s airfield in Tussenhausen-Mattsies, Germany, killing chief test pilot Gerard Guillaumaud, 45, the sole occupant. The Williams FJ44-powered aircraft crashed shortly after takeoff while returning to the runway and was destroyed. It first flew September 29 and had logged 28 flight hours.
NetJets Europe has offered its pilots more pay and new contracts as it seeks to retain existing flight crew and hire 180 more personnel next year. Annual starting salaries will increase by between 12 and 35 percent, with first officers getting €56,500 ($73,450) and captains being offered €95,000 ($123,500).
In a letter sent yesterday to Eclipse 500 buyers, Eclipse Aviation outlined design changes to help the very light twinjet achieve promised performance goals. Changes include larger metal tip tanks, which add three gallons to the previously announced 16.5 per side, for a total of 19.5 gallons per tank. Total fuel capacity will be 1,668 pounds, while mtow will remain 5,920 pounds, for a decrease in useful load of 40 pounds.
Responding to recommendations from Canada’s Transportation Safety Board after at least two low-visibility landing accidents, Transport Canada increased the minimum visibility required before beginning an approach from the previous 1,200 feet to 1,600 feet, effective December 1. The visibility measurement can be made by a sensor or by a qualified observer if a visibility sensor has not been installed or is out of service.
In what many observers predicted, the FAA/Industry Age 60 Aviation Rulemaking Committee was unable to reach consensus on whether to raise the mandatory retirement age of 60 for airline pilots. Bloomberg News reported it obtained a copy of the report, which the FAA is studying but has not yet released.
A Federal Court in Brazil today ordered the release of the passports of the two U.S. pilots of the Embraer Legacy 600 involved in the September 29 collision with a Gol Airlines 737 over the Amazon. The Federal Regional Court of the First Region of Brazil said that it had unanimously agreed to return the passports of Joseph Lepore, 42, of Bay Shore, N.Y., and Jan Paladino, 34, of Westhampton Beach, N.Y. effective in 72 hours.
The FAA might revive TCAS III. The system, which would add lateral resolution advisories (RA) to the current TCAS II’s vertical commands, was proposed many years ago but dropped after technical investigations showed that it would have been extremely difficult to develop and implement.
More than 80 exhibitors and 30 aircraft are currently registered for the first Middle East Business Aviation convention, scheduled for January 31 and February 1 in Dubai. The event is organized by the UK’s Fairs & Exhibitions in alliance with the recently established Middle East Business Aviation Association (MEBAA).