Gulfstream’s G650 received provisional type certification from the FAA on Nov. 18, 2011, and the manufacturer expects full FAA certification shortly, allowing planned deliveries in the second quarter. The provisional certification let Gulfstream keep the production line moving, with final-phase manufacturing, including completion activity, continuing on customer aircraft so they can be delivered on schedule.
This is The Jet Business’s new store in Mayfair, London’s fanciest neighborhood. It opened fully in January, complete with purpose-built 32-inch iPads that allow prospective clients to specify their private aviation preferences and view specifications and cabin layouts on life-size video walls. Sales discussions take place in a full-size mockup of an Airbus ACJ, featuring a living room, dining room and office. Company founder Steve Varsano tells AIN he is already busy fielding inquiries from visiting clients drawn from around the globe.
Cirrus has restructured more than $13 million worth of loan and lease obligations related to its Grand Forks, N.D. production facility with that city’s Growth Fund. Cirrus employs approximately 90 people in Grand Forks who make composite component parts for its SR-series piston aircraft, which are then shipped to the company’s assembly line in Duluth, Minn.
Spurred by sluggish demand for light and midsize jets and the threat from Brazil’s Embraer, Cessna has enlarged its midsize cabin cross-section and refreshed one of the lightest jets it builds. The new contenders were revealed last fall in the form of the 680A Latitude midsize and the M2 update of the CJ1+. They compete with, respectively, the Embraer Legacy 450 (slated for certification in late 2014 and service entry in early 2015) and the Phenom 100 (in service since 2009).
Aerocon Engineering has developed for the Boeing 737-700, -800 and -900 a replacement forward airstair that the Van Nuys, Calif.-based company says is not only 50 percent lighter but also more reliable and requires less maintenance than the standard OEM equipment.
The new airstair is the culmination of a 24-month government contract. Aerocon CEO Benny Younesi expects an FAA supplemental type certificate (STC) in the middle of this year, and production has already begun.
Hungary extended until 2026 the lease contract with the Swedish government for the 14 Saab Gripen C/D fighters that it received in 2006 and 2007. The agreement was due to expire in 2016. According to press reports in Budapest, Hungary currently pays $130 million per year to operate the aircraft, which were surplus to Swedish air force requirements. Saab said it is pleased by Hungary’s “long-term strategic decision.”
The first NH-90 Tactical Transport Helicopter (TTH) in final operational configuration was delivered to the French Army on January 30. “This is the culmination of the most important helicopter program ever launched in Europe,” said Eurocopter CEO Lutz Bertling. Earlier deliveries of the TTH version to Australia, Germany and Sweden attracted criticism in those countries for various deficiencies. But Eurocopter said that the final configuration includes field-tested avionics that enable the helicopter to carry out its missions night and day with no major restrictions.
Avjet has been offering aircraft sales, acquisition, charter, management services and oversight of completion and refurbishment projects since 1979. Headquartered in Burbank, Calif., the company maintains a presence in Washington D.C., Seoul; Abu Dhabi; Moscow; Tokyo; and other locations around the world. Avjet also owns and operates an FBO in Pagosa Springs, Colo.
Bell Helicopter and Eurocopter both claimed victory in a ruling by the Federal Court of Canada on Tuesday. The case centered around a Eurocopter-patented landing gear design that was apparently used on two Bell 429 prototypes. While the court dismissed 15 of the 16 claims filed against Bell, it did find that the Texas-based company violated Eurocopter’s patent on the two 429 prototypes.