Textron AirLand’s prototype Scorpion twin-engine “tactical” jet, which was built by Textron subsidiary Cessna Aircraft, flew for the first time this morning in Wichita. The aircraft, flown by engineering test pilot Dan Hinson and copilot David Sitz, took off from McConnell Air Force Base and conducted “a range of handling maneuvers” for nearly an hour-and-a-half, completing the flight at 10:30 a.m. Central Time. The joint-venture company had delayed the flight for several days because of weather in Wichita.
AINalerts » December 12, 2013
Bell Helicopter will build its new short light single (SLS) helicopter at Lafayette Regional Airport in Louisiana, the company announced on Tuesday.
Bombardier closed the sale of Flexjet to Flexjet LLC, a newly created company funded by Directional Aviation Capital, last week, though aircraft are still being transferred to the new owner. When the deal was announced on September 5, the acquisition price was $185 million; following “purchase price adjustments,” it is now estimated at $195 million, including the “assumption of an estimated $70 million of customer advances” by Directional’s Flexjet LLC.
The Civil Aviation Medical Association (CAMA), a group that represents aviation medical examiners (AMEs) in the U.S., is opposing the FAA’s newly proposed policy “that would task AMEs to determine body mass index (BMI) on all pilot applicants.” A BMI exceeding a set value–initially 40–would require evaluation by a board-certified sleep specialist to determine if the pilot applicant has obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Scott’s-Bell 47’s (SB47) quest to put a revised edition of the iconic Bell 47 back into production is now a step closer. The Le Sueur, Minn.-based company recently received orders for 38 of its Rolls-Royce RR300-powered 47GT-6 helicopters from a diverse customer list, the majority of which are from authorized dealers for exports into Asia/Australasia.
Yankee Pacific–a provider of custom structures, components and systems to the executive aircraft market since 2006–will be renamed Advent Aerospace, effective January 1. Advent means “the arrival of something new,” said managing director Ken Goldsmith. “And for us, Advent Aerospace means an ever-increasing emphasis on technology and innovation to bring great new products and services to our customers and offer new opportunities for our employees.
The Central Europe Private Aviation’s fourth annual CEPA Expo, held recently in Prague, drew a “record number” of attendees. The delegates, partners and sponsors at the event took part in several panel sessions and networked with industry colleagues. At the opening ceremony, CEPA chairman Philippe Lienard, the director of foreign trade at The Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic, welcomed conference attendees and confirmed the group’s commitment to help business aviation thrive in the region.
The UK parliament’s Public Accounts Committee has highlighted a failure on the part of the country’s Border Force to adequately screen private aircraft arrivals. In a December 10 report, the committee said this was one outcome from recent staffing cuts at the agency and it also criticized failures in the Border Force’s IT system that allegedly give staff inadequate access to passenger information. The report claimed failure to check private aircraft could result in “potentially letting billionaire gangsters off the hook.”
Inmarsat successfully launched the first of three satellites in the Global Xpress constellation network, which–when fully operational–will provide airborne broadband around the globe at speeds of up to 50 Mbps. The just-launched satellite will cover the Indian Ocean region. The remaining satellites are expected to launch in the second and third quarters of next year, providing global coverage by the end of the year. Honeywell is exclusively developing, producing and distributing the onboard hardware that will connect users to the Global Xpress network.
Gulfstream Aerospace appointed Scott Clarey sales director for the U.S. Southwest. In his new role he is responsible for sales to new and existing customers in Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico and Utah. Clarey, who is based in Tempe, Ariz., came to Gulfstream from Piaggio America, where he was the regional sales director in the western U.S. and western Canada. He has been a pilot since age 16 and has been in aviation sales for the last 10 years.
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