Century Flight Systems has ramped up autopilot certification activities and recently received STCs for Century 4000 installations in most Piper Cherokees and Saratogas. The company also received STCs for most Cessna 182s as well as the 421B and 421C twins. Prices for the C4000 start at $19,995.
The first quarter proved a mixed bag for Bell and Cessna, according to numbers released last month by parent company Textron.
Bell delivered 40 commercial helicopters in the first quarter, compared with 30 during the same period last year. Sales were also strong, with signing of orders for 50 new commercial helicopters, including an agreement with Air Medical Group to deliver 30 helicopters over the next several years.
Bacacheri Airport in the city of Curitiba, approximately 150 miles south of São Paulo, has been named the third largest general aviation airport in Brazil. A survey conducted by ABAG (Associação Brasileira de Aviação Geral, Brazilian Association of General Aviation) showed the airport handled 52,786 movements in 2011, trailing only Campo de Marte Airport in São Paulo and Jacarepauá Airport in Rio de Janeiro.
Seven winners emerged from the Crystal Cabin Awards judging last month, and some of them stand to find a market in business aviation.
The winners were announced at a gala dinner in Hamburg, Germany, on the eve of the opening of the annual Aircraft Interiors Expo.
Candidates with winning entries included Boeing, Diehl Aircabin, Dornier Technologie Systems, Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Meru, Thales and Zodiac Aerospace.
Singapore state-owned ST Aerospace, known for its MRO operation and its passenger-to-freighter conversions, also runs a small business jet charter operation. Subsidiary Pacific Flight Services (PFS) operates from Singapore, although its four jets are registered in Australia.
Despite the difficulty ATR has encountered in penetrating the U.S. turboprop market, company CEO Filippo Bagnato continues to express optimism that the Franco-Italian partnership will experience a resurgence in what perhaps represents its final frontier of a sort. Now controlling some 60 percent of the market for 50- to 90-seat airplanes based on unit sales backlogs, the last Western maker of 50-seat-category turboprops sees itself as a potential lifeline for small U.S. cities and communities that can no longer support the services of regional jets of any size.
Boeing Defense presented the first F-15SA destined for Saudi Arabia in a ceremony at its St. Louis headquarters on April 30. The latest F-15 variant is the centerpiece of the largest foreign military sale in U.S. history, worth $29.4 billion. It also figured prominently in recent U.S. negotiations to improve the military capabilities of Israel, the UAE and Saudi Arabia simultaneously.
The Russian navy introduced the first of a planned eight Antonov An-140-100 twin turboprops at Ostafievo naval air station. This follows delivery of four similar aircraft to the Russian Air Force, three of which are based at Chkalovsky airbase. But it is still unclear whether the Russian ministry of defense will order the Ukrainian design in quantity.
Boeing and NASA said they completed the flight-test program of the X-48C blended wing body (BWB) research aircraft on April 9. The program consisted of 30 flights over eight months at NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.
Within the next month, the Indian Air Force (IAF) will re-release a request for proposal (RFP) for nine aircraft to perform signals intelligence (Sigint), communications jamming (Comjam), ground survey and target towing roles. The previous RFP released four years ago shortlisted Embraer and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), both offering the IAI-Elta airborne integrated signal intelligence system (Aisis). But delays in defining India’s offset policy resulted in price escalation from the bidders, leading the Indian defense ministry to cancel that RFP.