AgustaWestland signed agreements at the Farnborough airshow with three key suppliers–Pratt & Whitney Canada, Rockwell Collins and BAE Systems–for its AW609 civil tiltrotor program. These major agreements follow a trail of contracts signed with AW609 component suppliers since AgustaWestland acquired the tiltrotor program last November. The OEM expects to obtain FAA and EASA certification of the AW609 in the first half of 2016.
Aviation International News » August 2012
Russian Helicopters unveiled a full-size mockup of the reworked Kamov Ka-62 medium twin at the HeliRussia 2012 show in Moscow in May.
After nearly two months of record forest fires from Michigan to California, the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) added four more leased heavy helicopters to its firefighting fleet in late June. The additions include two Sikorsky S-61s from Siller Helicopters, an Erickson S-64 Air-Crane and an S-70 from Firehawk Helicopters. A spokesman for Erickson said that last year the company had six helicopters flying USFS contracts; this year that number is eight. The USFS said the helicopters will be used for large-fire support and in the initial assault both to drop retardant and support ground crews.
There was a time in the completion and refurbishment industry when customer demand drove technology. Now, says Hawker Beechcraft v-p Brian Howell, it’s the near light-speed progress of technology that’s driving customer demand for cabin equipage.
The results of this year’s AIN Product Support Survey took some interesting turns, but Gulfstream Aerospace once again retains the top spot in the Aircraft Survey, in the combined, newer and older aircraft ratings. The results of the Product Support Avionics Survey will be published in AIN’s September issue, followed by the Engines Survey in the October issue.
There’s history, and then there’s history; Valair Aviation falls into the latter category. Its two original hangars were part of Aero Commander’s Wiley Post Airport production facility in Oklahoma City. Dating back to the 1950s, they were the finishing center for new aircraft, the place where customers picked up their new piston-, turboprop- and turbojet-powered Commanders.
On July 13, Hawker Beechcraft filed a request with the U.S. bankruptcy court requesting permission as part of the restructuring to grant bonuses to most of its “senior leadership team” (SLT, see below).
The incentive bonuses under the key employee incentive plan (KEIP) could total as much as 200 percent of each individual’s base salary; however, the filing makes clear that the bonuses are based on the achievement of certain incentive goals.
The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) filed papers with U.S. Bankruptcy Court on July 16, challenging the proposed sale of Hawker Beechcraft to Superior Aviation Beijing.
“The proposed sale of Hawker Beechcraft to a Chinese government-backed entity has broad implications for the U.S. economy and national security,” said IAM International president Tom Buffenbarger. “The sale should not be rushed through without adequate scrutiny by all interested parties, including federal regulators, state officials and the Wichita community.”
When Hawker Beechcraft announced on July 9 it was in negotiations that might result in its acquisition by Superior Aviation of Beijing, the most common response was, “Who?”
Superior Aviation is a Chinese aviation technology firm with a mission, according to Superior Aviation CEO Tim Archer, “to promote economic and industry development in the southern part of Beijing City.”
A U.S. bankruptcy court has cleared the way for Hawker Beechcraft to begin “exclusive negotiations” for China’s Superior Aviation Beijing to acquire the civil aviation interests of the financially troubled group.