Piper Aircraft said its PiperJet prototype is making progress, with the first engine start and run expected early this month. Last month, the Vero Beach, Fla.-based aircraft manufacturer finished all static load testing on the single-engine jet proof-of-concept airframe. The prototype has since been removed from the test fixture and is now standing on its own landing gear.
Aviation International News » July 2008
Apopka, Fla.-based GreenFlight International continues to refine its “first generation” biofuel for jets and plans to conduct the first biofuel transcontinental flight using this blend within the next 60 days, company founder Douglas Rodante said. At press time, the company was running a turbine engine on a ground test stand with different blends of soy and animal-fat oils to find the cleanest-burning jet fuel that meets ASTM standards.
The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) last month established an environment committee “to represent the general aviation manufacturing industry’s environmental policy and coordinate with other aerospace industry stakeholders and government entities.” According to GAMA, the committee will ensure that the association’s members are active participants in the discussions and policy decisions about GA’s environmental impact and init
ARG/US is publicly disputing claims made at the NATA Air Charter Summit last month by the Air Charter Safety Foundation (ACSF) about its new industry audit standard. Russ Lawton, director of safety management for ACSF, said the group had “very strong participation” from organizations such as Wyvern and ARG/US in creating the ACSF’s new standard and worked “very closely” with them.
Three business jet manufacturers on June 20 separately announced fleet orders worth as much as a combined $3.5 billion. Fractional provider NetJets was the biggest shopper, placing a firm order for $1.9 billion worth of Gulfstream G450s and G550s that will “significantly expand” its large-cabin fleet. Under the agreement, NetJets will take delivery of 20 G450s and 20 G550s between 2012 and the end of 2016.
The pilot of an Eclipse 500 pushed the throttles forward during a wind-shear encounter at Chicago Midway Airport last month with enough force to result in an “eng control fail” crew alerting system message followed by a maximum uncontrolled thrust condition on both of the airplane’s Pratt & Whitney Canada PW610F turbofans.
The NTSB cited three accidents and an incident involving regional airlines as the basis for a pair of recommendations to the FAA related to pilot fatigue last month. The Board called on the FAA to develop guidance for operators to establish “fatigue management systems” and methodology to assess their effectiveness, including their ability to improve sleep and alertness, mitigate performance errors and prevent incidents and accidents.
In just one year, the price paid at the refinery for jet-A in the U.S. has climbed 92.7 percent, reaching the $4-per-gallon mark early last month. The refinery price is a good place to start looking at fuel prices because it roughly equates to the cost of jet-A paid by FBOs before various fees, taxes and markups are added to decide the retail price.
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