Mitsubishi Aircraft scored an enormous marketing coup last month when it signed its first customer outside Japan for the 78- to 92-seat MRJ. The letter of intent, signed by St. Louis-based Trans States Holdings, owner of Trans States Airlines and GoJet, calls for a firm order for 50 airplanes, along with options for another 50.
Aviation International News » November 2009
Flight Options plans to equip most of its fleet of fractionally owned business jets with Aircell’s high-speed Internet system, a decision that will give the company’s aircraft owners and jet card customers in-flight Wi-Fi access anywhere over the continental U.S.
Dassault has selected a cockpit upgrade from Exton, Pa.-based Innovative Solutions & Support that is designed to bring a host of advanced capabilities to Falcon 2000s and 2000EXs originally delivered with Rockwell Collins Pro Line 4 avionics.
Nextant Aerospace announced at the NBAA Convention that it has received STC approval for its Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 flight deck retrofit for Beechjet 400s and Hawker 400XPs. Consisting of two large LCD primary flight displays and one large LCD multifunction display, the cockpit retrofit is priced at $390,000. An additional second MFD can be installed for about $50,000.
Rockwell Collins has started flight trials of the synthetic-vision portion of the Pro Line Fusion integrated avionics system in a company-owned Challenger 601, adding one of the last–and most highly anticipated–features to the new avionics system.
Richard Whitcomb, 88, the long-time NASA engineer des-cribed as the most significant aerodynamics contributor of the second half of the 20th century, died on October 13 in Newport News, Va. He was the recipient of the prestigious Collier Trophy for his discovery of the area rule fuselage, which gave fighter jets supersonic speed and greater range, and his supercritical wing and winglets are found on many of today’s aircraft designs.
Spectrum Aeronautical is preparing to manufacture a second S.40 test fuselage as it continues to refine its processes and manufacturing technology since completing the first demo fuselage in June.
Scott Carson, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, will retire at the end of the year. He will be succeeded by Jim Albaugh, the former head of Boeing’s Integrated Defense Systems.
Carey Bond has been promoted from v-p and chief marketing officer to president of Sikorsky Global Helicopters. He will continue his duties as chief marketing officer.
Gulfstream rolled out two new jets recently, the large-cabin flagship G650 on September 29 in Savannah, Ga., and the super-midsize G250 in Tel Aviv, Israel, on October 6. Both jets’ programs remain on schedule and they are expected to fly before year-end and achieve certification in 2011. The $64.5 million Mach 0.925 G650 is powered by two Rolls-Royce BR725 turbofans and is Gulfstream’s first clean-sheet new type certificate since the GII.
The latest entry in the personal jet marketplace–Stratos Aircraft of Bend, Ore.–made its first appearance at the NBAA Convention last month with a full-scale cabin mockup. Stratos announced just before the show that Verson Pandian, owner of Bend-based Cascade Air Charter, placed the first deposit for a Stratos 714 under the company’s new Assurance deposit program. This program allows for full refunding of deposits, which are held in escrow.