When the U.S. Air Force announced on December 22 that it had selected Sierra Nevada and its Brazilian partner Embraer as the winner in the competition to build a light air support aircraft, not everyone was happy, in particular Wichita-based Hawker Beechcraft, a competitor for the same contract.
In what stands as approximately the 40th airworthiness directive (AD) affecting the Airbus A380, the EASA mandated inspections and possibly repairs on the double-decker’s wing rib feet last Friday after operators found cracks on several aircraft. The AD applies to 20 of the 68 A380s in service.
Sikorsky Aircraft named 35 suppliers participating in an industry-funded effort to build two prototype S-97 Raider helicopters for evaluation by the U.S. military. The Raider is a follow-on to the company’s X2 technology demonstrator with coaxial contra-rotating main rotors and a pusher propeller.
EADS’s goal of maintaining equal revenues at its civil and military businesses continues to be compromised by the stellar success of its Airbus division. The European group’s soon-to-retire president and CEO, Louis Gallois, acknowledged as much on January 17 at the EADS New Year Press Conference in Hamburg, Germany.
BAE Systems revealed L-3 Link Simulation & Training as its partner to provide the ground-based training system for BAE’s Hawk Advanced Jet Training System (AJTS), proposed for the U.S. Air Force T-X jet trainer replacement program. L-3 Link, based in Arlington, Texas, joins Northrop Grumman as announced partners on the BAE pursuit team.
Gulfstream Aerospace told AIN yesterday that the super-midsize G280 obtained provisional type certification from the Civil Aviation Authority of Israel (CAAI) on December 29. “We are nearing provisional certification from the FAA,” a Gulfstream spokeswoman added.
Cessna’s swift midsize Citation Ten made its maiden flight from Wichita Mid-Continent Airport on Tuesday afternoon. Commanded by Cessna engineering test pilot Michael Voigt, the more than two-hour sortie evaluated stability and control, handling qualities, the autopilot and autothrottle system, engine operability and the Garmin G5000 avionics.
Jet Services, a company active in the French business aviation industry since 2009, has taken control of Darta, a 40-year-old executive air charter operator based at Paris Le Bourget Airport. The firm, belonging to the Ségur private equity group, bought 90 percent of Darta’s shares in late December, according to Jet Services and Ségur president Marie-Antoinette Dain. The move was announced this week. Dain told AIN that Darta’s current fleet of 10 business aircraft will soon expand.
Air charter firm XOJet announced today that it achieved more than a 30-percent year-over-year growth in flight hours last year. The company said its continued growth has been limited only by fleet size, since it claims demand has consistently exceeded capacity. To drive continued growth this year, XOJet is focused on expanding its fleet. In fact, the company placed an order for 12 Hawker Beechcraft Hawker 800XPr twinjets in October and introduced seven of these aircraft into its fleet this month.
Max-Viz and Vancouver-based Helijet cooperatively installed the Max-Viz EVS-1500 enhanced vision system on three Sikorsky S-76 helicopters supporting EMS operations under contract with the British Columbia government. The recently added EVS avionics will allow pilots to avoid inadvertent IMC, day or night, in addition to improving crew situational awareness by depicting terrain features and man-made structures at night. These features will enable crews to choose safer routes, Helijet said.