The U.S. Bankruptcy Court issued an order on Monday authorizing Hawker Beechcraft to assume an earlier agreement with Pilatus Aircraft, resolving a claim by the Swiss OEM against the Wichita aircraft manufacturer. Pilatus had alleged that Hawker Beechcraft continued to build and deliver T-6 trainers before and following the May bankruptcy filing without paying royalties on intellectual property in production of the aircraft. The T-6 and AT-6 are both based on a Pilatus design.
Cessna Aircraft has started production of the Citation M2 at its Independence, Kan. facility, the company announced today. The front and aft cabin assemblies for the light business jet, which is a derivative of the out-of-production CJ1, are built at Cessna’s Wichita facility and then transported to Independence for final assembly and delivery. S/N 800, a demonstrator aircraft, is slated to roll off the assembly line in April.
CAE’s Gulfstream G450/G550 flight simulator in Shanghai, China, recently received Level D certification by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC). The G450/G550 training programs are set to start soon at the Shanghai Eastern Flight Training Centre (SEFTC), in the Shanghai Pudong Waigaoqiao free trade zone. Both programs will feature standard CAE courseware in Mandarin, as well as English. The Shanghai facility is CAE’s 10th business aviation training location worldwide.
Rectrix Commercial Aviation Services acquired AirFlyte, an FBO and Part 145 repair station located at Barnes Regional Airport in Westfield, Mass. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, though Rectrix did reveal that it paid cash for the company. AirFlyte founder Gary Potts will remain president of AirFlyte, according to Rectrix. AirFlyte’s capabilities include maintenance for most business jets at its 43,000-sq-ft facility. FBO amenities include business suites, crew lounges, quiet rooms, refueling services, aircraft deicing and a conference center.
Bombardier Aerospace delivered 179 business jets last year, 16 more than in 2011. During this same period, the company received net orders for 343 business jets, compared with 191 for the previous year. “We are the market leaders in business aircraft, and the restructuring of our commercial aircraft sales organization is yielding results,” said Bombardier Aerospace president and COO Guy Hachey. “We are seeing positive momentum across our entire product portfolio,” which also includes regional jets.
Cessna Aircraft’s Grand Caravan EX received FAA type certification and has outperformed initial targets, the company announced today. Powered by a new Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-140 turboprop engine, the Grand Caravan EX boasts a 38-percent improvement in rate-of-climb over a stock Grand Caravan, a figure that exceeds the original 20-percent improvement projection. Deliveries to customers have already started.
Traffic results for November 2012 released by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Wednesday showed an improvement in both passenger and air freight demand. Air travel figures rose 4.6 percent for the month year-over-year, compared with October’s rise of just 2.9 percent. Meanwhile, air freight volumes edged up 1.6 percent in November after declining 2.6 percent in October, year to year.
Boeing has rolled out the first 777 built at the program’s increased production rate of 8.3 per month, or 100 airplanes per year, the company announced Thursday. Plans call for delivery of the airplane—a 777 Freighter—to Korean Air in February.
ST Aerospace has invested an additional $73.5 million in wholly owned subsidiary ST Aerospace Rotables (Star), bringing the company’s total share capital contribution to $75 million. Star will use the additional funds to build its rotables asset pool as it broadens the scope of its component support capability.
Able Aerospace Services announced the availability of a new Bell 206 main rotor strap fitting and pin PMA replacement part. Operators of the Bell 206 series can now further reduce operating costs by using the exclusive FAA-certified PMA parts. The main rotor strap fitting and pin are components of the Bell main rotor hub. The strap fitting replaces Bell Part Number 206-011-150-105 and the strap pin replaces Bell Part Number 206-011-125-105. Parts are available immediately at up to 50 percent less than OEM parts, according to the company.