US Airways recently became the first airline to receive FAA certification approval of the SafeRoute suite of NextGen avionics applications in the Airbus A330. The airline claims SafeRoute will “enhance operational safety and efficiency during various phases of flight.”
Rockwell Collins and Piaggio announced an upgrade program for the Piaggio Avanti twin turboprop. The program, available from Ruag Aviation, allows operators to upgrade their Pro Line 4 avionics to Pro Line 21. The Pro Line 21 P180 cockpit will be equipped with three or four 10-inch by 8-inch LCDs and Rockwell Collins’s Integrated Flight Information System, plus a new FMS and GPS-4000 that enables Waas LPV and space-based augmentation system with vertical guidance approaches.
Prague, Czech Republic-based Aviation Service, a Bell Helicopter service facility, has been granted expanded and updated terms of its design organization approval from EASA. The expansion of the DOA certification allows Aviation Service to perform major changes on the primary structure and cabin interior on all Bell helicopter models.
Grossmann Jet Service, a Prague-based aircraft management and charter group, has contracted with Jet Aviation Basel to perform the 96-month inspection on a Legacy 600. It will be the MRO’s first inspection of this magnitude on the type.
Faced with tough budget decisions on new weapons programs, the U.S. Army appears to be delaying a decision on the $6- to $8 billion Armed Aerial Scout program while concurrently moving forward with the potential $100 billion joint multi-role (JMR) initiative.
Airshows in the U.S., already reeling from widespread cancellations and significantly diminished attendance following the withdrawal of U.S. military demonstration teams, are now facing a new financial hurdle: user fees from the FAA.
The Pentagon blamed the withdrawal of its popular jet demonstration teams, the Blue Angels and the Thunderbirds, on cutbacks attributable to automatic federal budget sequestration. The Army also has withdrawn its Golden Knights parachute team.
Agricultural aircraft manufacturer Thrush received full type certification from Brazil’s civil aviation authority (ANAC) for its new GE H80-powered 510G turboprop single. The airframer hails the approval as a major milestone, since the need for agricultural aircraft in the South American country is expected to escalate rapidly over the next decade as operators replace their aging fleets. Thrush is not a newcomer to Brazil, as its Pratt & Whitney Canada-powered 510P has been in operation in the country for many years.
Aeromar, the second largest regional carrier in Mexico, has taken delivery of its first of two ATR 72-600s, making it the first operator of the 70-seat turboprop in Mexico and Central America. The airline is a long-standing ATR customer, with 15 of the manufacturer’s ATR regional aircraft in its fleet: the new ATR 72-600, as well as 10 ATR 42-500s and four ATR 42-320s.
David Gilmour has been appointed CEO of Air BP. He succeeds Andy Holmes, who will head BP’s refining and marketing businesses in Australia and New Zealand.
L-3 Aviation Recorders announced that Ed Senen, most recently Thales Avionics’ v-p and general manager for the Americas, has been named the division’s president.
After investigating three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers (METs), resulting in four fatalities, the NTSB has recommended that the FAA require that all METs be registered, marked and lighted where feasible.
METs are temporary structures used to measure wind speed and direction during the development of wind energy generator facilities. They can be erected quickly and, depending on their location, without notice to the local aviation community.