Business aircraft flying activity last month in the U.S. slipped by 1.3 percent from a year ago, according to TraqPak data released on Tuesday by aviation services company Argus. Part 91 flying still leads the operational category segment, but managed to eke out only a 0.3-percent gain. Part 135 charter activity dipped slightly–1.4 percent–while fractional flying dropped by 6.7 percent on a year-over-year basis.
AINalerts » July 12, 2012
Garmin has added its technological muscle to the market for external GPS receivers for mobile devices, not only using GPS but also by receiving signals from Russia’s Glonass constellation. Yesterday Garmin unveiled its GLO receiver, which connects to Apple and Android devices wirelessly via Bluetooth and offers battery life of 12 hours and 10-times-per-second position update rate.
AgustaWestland signed agreements yesterday at the Farnborough International airshow with three key suppliers for its AW609 civil tiltrotor. These major agreements follow a trail of contracts signed with AW609 component suppliers since AgustaWestland acquired the tiltrotor program last November.
Robinson Helicopter enjoyed a robust first six months, producing 234 aircraft–76 R66 turbine singles and 156 R44s. Sales of the R66 have been particularly strong, even as the base price of that aircraft was raised to $822,000, effective July 1. In response to demand for the R66, Robinson plans to raise production of that aircraft from four to six per week by year-end, increasing Robinson’s total aircraft production to 13 per week from the rate of 10 per week at the beginning of the year and the current rate of 11 per week.
Yesterday at the Farnborough International airshow, Bombardier said its three new Learjets–the Model 70, 75 and 85–are right on schedule.
The Learjet 85 continues to progress toward first flight later this year, with four test aircraft now in various stages of fabrication. The first complete pressure fuselage, including the nose and aft fuselage, is undergoing final validation before being shipped from Bombardier’s Queretaro, Mexico plant to its assembly facility in Wichita.
Arinc Direct recently released Version 2.3 of its iPad flight-planning app, a major upgrade designed to help users eliminate paper from their cockpits and including a new note-taking annotation feature on flight plans.
PPG Industries’ aerospace transparencies group yesterday was tapped by Cessna Aircraft to supply the cockpit windows for the new Citation Latitude. The heated windshield and side cockpit window for the super-midsize jet will be made of PPG’s chemically strengthened Herculite II glass, which is lightweight but can still resist impact by a four-pound bird at 305 knots.
Columbia Avionics & Aircraft Services obtained FAA STC approval to install Garmin GTN 650 and 750 navcoms in the Cessna 500, 501, 550, 551, S550 and 560. This follows a similar STC that the Columbia, Mo.-based company received in May for the Cessna 650. The touchscreen Garmin GTN navcoms are certified for full autopilot-coupled Waas LPV approaches, including vertical guidance. The STC also covers various combinations of the GTN 650/750, Garmin GTX-33ES mode-S transponders, Garmin GDL-69/A weather data link and a marker beacon receiver.
Signal Aviation Services, the FBO at Lebanon (N.H.) Municipal Airport, was purchased on Tuesday by long-time employees Greg Soho and Jason Archambeault and has been rebranded as Granite Air Center. The new owners are planning several improvements and upgrades at the facility, including a refreshing of the FBO’s interior elements. They are also planning to purchase a new de-icer, crew car, courtesy van and ground power unit. Granite Air offers heated hangar space, catering, rental cars and Part 145 repair station maintenance.
GKN Aerospace was awarded a contract this week for the design, development and production of transparencies for Bombardier’s Global 7000 and Global 8000 business jets. Initial test items will be delivered in 2013. The contract includes both the cockpit and passenger cabin windows that will incorporate GKN’s CrystalVue I abrasion resistant coating for the ultra-long-range business jets. Design and production will take place at the GKN facility in Garden Grove, Calif.