The Airbus business aircraft juggernaut keeps rolling, and independent completion centers are happily enjoying the result.
Cabin Interior and Electronics
News and developments about everything that goes into the cabin of an aircraft, from floor coverings to headliners, with a special emphasis on in-flight entertainment, communications and other electronics for passengers. If it is in the cabin of an aircraft, it’s covered here.
When founder Dale Dunn announced the formation of DunnAir Business Jet Completion Center in Tucson, Ariz., in 2004, the expectation was that it would employ as many as 600 workers, many from a pool of skilled labor Bombardier left behind when it moved out of its leased hangar at Tucson International Airport. DunnAir officially opened for business in February 2005, but now the hangar again sits empty, the phones disconnected.
Midcoast Aviation in St. Louis last month was busy installing the first Teledyne Iridium Units (TIU) in Challenger 604s operated by Boeing’s executive flight department. Designed for use with MagnaStar air-to-ground telephone systems, the TIU from Teledyne Controls allows buyers to use their existing MagnaStar handsets to place voice and data calls anywhere in the world.
When DeCrane Aircraft Holdings bought PATS in 1999, the newly acquired company’s primary focus was on the installation of auxiliary fuel tanks, and in particular an exclusive contract to provide auxiliary tank systems for the Boeing Business Jet. At the time, DeCrane CEO Jack DeCrane noted that the Georgetown, Del.-based company had “significant growth prospects.”
OnAir, the inflight voice and data communications joint venture among Airbus, SITA and Tenzing, will not pursue business aircraft installations for the time being. The company has said that it will focus exclusively on the airline sector.
Japanese manufacturing giant Matsushita, the company behind the Panasonic brand, announced a name change for its cabin electronics division effective April 1. Matsushita Avionics Systems becomes Panasonic Avionics, according to the company, which said it made the swap because of the strong brand recognition of Panasonic throughout the world.
Choosing the right data satcom system has never been easier thanks to an array of choices from manufacturers. Several suppliers are now offering high-speed data satcom equipment that uses the Inmarsat Swift64 satellite link, a digital network operating over the same satellites that carry voice and low-speed data signals.
Matsushita Avionics Systems might not be a company with which many people are intimately familiar, but chances are most of the business aviation industry will know quite a lot about MAS soon enough. A top supplier of in-flight entertainment systems to the airlines for more than 25 years, the Bothell, Wash.-based cabin avionics supplier this year is making its first serious foray into the business aviation IFE market.
With an eye on the future, Gore Design Completions (GDC) officially opened its big, new interior shop in San Antonio on February 8 amid ceremonies hosting some 400 guests and dignitaries.
Honeywell has completed initial flight and ground testing of its AIS-2000 multi-regional airborne satellite television system in the Middle East. During testing in a Gulfstream IV-SP, signal performance and video quality were recorded to verify coverage areas. Honeywell assessed system performance by monitoring non-subscription channels available on the Nilesat and Arabsat DBS satellites, according to the company.