Embraer plans to begin assembling its new midsize Legacy 450 and 500 business jets at its Melbourne, Fla., campus by 2016. The company will break ground soon on a major new plant expansion at its Melbourne facility and expects to add 600 more jobs when it is fully up and running. Embraer already assembles Phenom 100s and 300s at the Florida facility. Meanwhile, Embraer Executive Jets senior vice president Jose Eduardo Costas added that certification of the fly-by-wire Legacy 500 is “imminent.”
Charter hub Returnjet.com is extending free access to aircraft availability data to brokers in a bid to challenge the market dominance of rival portal Avinode. The change, which took effect July 14, will also allow operators who have registered their fleets with the site to have complimentary access to the real-time data.
Operators will continue to pay a 3-percent “introduction fee” for any flight conducted as a result of customer contact from the site. Returnjet plans to introduce reduced introduction fees for flights booked by brokers.
Aeroflot’s new low-cost subsidiary Dobrolet became the first casualty of the new European Union (EU) sanctions against Russia when it was forced to suspend all operations on August 4. The Moscow-based carrier announced that it had had to stop all flights following the cancellation of insurance cover, access to aeronautical information, and maintenance and leasing arrangements.
Aircraft maintenance plan provider JSSI is pushing harder into the red-hot helicopter market. The company recently hired Ray Weiser as its new helicopter program specialist and will soon unveil several programs aimed at the helicopter market, according to CEO Neil Book.
Trig Avionics has partnered with the NextGen GA Fund, which will help provide loans for avionics upgrades. Trig’s TT31 mode-S transponder is an easy and cost-effective tray-compatible retrofit for the ubiquitous King KT76A found in many GA aircraft, and this upgrade provides a 1090ES-compliant ADS-B out installation. Trig also manufactures the “world’s smallest” mode-S transponder, the TT22, which features 1090ES ADS-B out and an integral altitude encoder.
JetTech founder Rob Irwin reports that one of his customers received funding for a large installation via the NextGen GA Fund. The fund was designed to help aircraft owners and operators obtain low-interest loans to help pay for avionics upgrades to meet upcoming NextGen mandates such as the Jan. 1, 2020 ADS-B out deadline. “The customer said it was a very quick process,” he said, “and there weren’t any constraints.
An acquisitive Textron has assembled a new flight simulator manufacturing and training company–TRU Simulation + Training–that its leaders believe will offer strong competition to entrenched players FlightSafety International and CAE. TRU’s president and CEO is James Takats, one of the founders of Florida-based simulator manufacturer Opinicus, which became a Textron property in November last year.
As Pilatus prepares to roll out the first prototype of its new PC-24 twinjet tomorrow at its factory in Stans, Switzerland–while also celebrating the company’s 75th anniversary on Swiss National Day and the 20th anniversary of the PC-12’s entry-into-service–it confirmed to AIN during a factory tour that it has stopped taking PC-24 orders for now, having announced 84 at EBACE in May.
Embraer remains on target for its annual delivery forecast, according to the Brazilian airframer. Speaking during a second-quarter earnings call this morning, CFO José Filippo said the company still expects to meet its goal of delivering between 105 and 120 executive jets for the year. He noted the manufacturer delivered 49 business jets (39 Phenoms, eight Legacy 600/650s and two Lineage 1000s) in the first half, 29 of them in the second quarter.
Airbus Group announced yesterday that it is “pursuing disposal options for its investment in Dassault Aviation.” Airbus’s 46-percent share gives it no power in decision making and is only a legacy of the share the French state used to have in Dassault. The Dassault family, via the GIMD holding company, owns slightly more than 50 percent of the manufacturer of the Rafale fighter and the Falcon business jets. Investor activist group TCI estimates that Airbus’s share in Dassault is worth €5 billion.