The Vaso factory of Russia’s United Aircraft Corp. (UAC) is completing a pair of VIP-equipped Ilyushin Il-96 jets under a contract from the Russian government worth approximately $333 million. Both of the four-engined aircraft will be used by the office of Russian President Vladimir Putin and operated by the country’s Special Air Detachment.
The Navy has spent nearly a decade and $3.4 billion researching candidates for a new fleet of helicopters to transport the President and other government VIPs. Now, as the Navy starts the process anew as the VXX program, AgustaWestland announced that it will again enter the fray with its medium-lift three-engine AW101, this time partnered with Northrop Grumman.
Hawker Beechcraft Global Customer Support celebrated the grand opening of its newest service center at the Aeropuerto Internacional del Norte in Monterrey, Mexico, yesterday. Besides maintenance, repair and modification of airframes, powerplants and avionics systems, the Mexican Dirección General de Aeronáutica Civil-certified Hawker Beechcraft Services facility also offers interior modification and exterior paint. This is the second HBS facility opened in Mexico.
Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based Clear 4 Take Off is offering cockpit and cabin window restoration on location. “We can do it at our facility in Fort Lauderdale, but we have a road crew that will go on location anywhere in the U.S.,” Thomas Esposito, president, told AIN. The company can completely refurbish windows provided they are within manufacturer-specified tolerance.
A shop supervisor for Aircraft Transparencies Repair (ATR) and Transparencies Engineering Group (TEG) is the latest employee convicted in a trial stemming from an aircraft parts conspiracy. Dennis Romero was convicted in U.S. District Court, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., for his participation in the conspiracy. The same jury acquitted three lower-level ATR mechanics and a salesperson. A separate mechanic, Hermes Reyes, pleaded guilty before the start of the trial.
The FAA is proposing an Airworthiness Directive for the Eurocopter AS332C, AS332L and AS332L1. It is based on reports of electro-valve power supply disruptions while the helicopter is on the ground. It causes the landing gear to retract and the helicopter nose to drop, resulting in damage to the forward section of the helicopter’s underside. The AD would require modifying the main landing-gear control panel 33G, connector 100G and wiring.
Russia’s seventh annual Jet Expo show opens tomorrow, with more than 100 exhibiting companies from 27 countries and up to around 40 business jets and helicopters at Moscow’s Vnukovo Airport. According to Jet Expo managing director Nikita Gorchakov, the rapid expansion of the three-day show (September 27-29) reflects strong growth in demand for business aircraft in Russia and the wider Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).
Airbus Corporate Jets expects to achieve double-digit sales of its ACJ aircraft in 2012 and is on course to deliver at least as many as the 10 jets it delivered in 2011. The European airframer told a September 26 press conference in Moscow that it has now sold more than 170 aircraft in the business aviation market, including some 110 A320-family narrowbodies and 60 widebodies (A330s, A340s and A380s).