Although the Commission on the Future of the United States Aerospace Industry was created by Congress long before September 11, a Bush Administration official said the terrorist attacks served to highlight previously existing deficiencies in the U.S. aerospace industry.
From his Paris office thousands of miles away François Lureau was as horrified by what he saw on September 11 as the millions of Americans who watched on television in stunned disbelief. But unlike most Americans, as the CEO of a multinational aerospace and defense company, Lureau was in a unique position to do something about the terrorist attacks–or at least to help ensure that nothing like it ever happened again.
BAE Systems may have to build another 14 of its Avro RJX regional jets, despite announcing its intention to scrap the program in late November. The UK manufacturer is now seeking to renegotiate contracts with launch customers British European Airways (BEA) and Druk Air of Bhutan. The British operator placed an order for 12 RJXs and options for another eight, and Druk Air holds a firm order for two.
While few seemed quite sure what to expect from the postponed NBAA Convention, those who made the trip to New Orleans last month generally expressed satisfaction with the number of attendees and the atmosphere of the show overall. The rescheduled event was held December 12 to 14 inside the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center as the rest of the city was launching into its unique brand of holiday revelry.
Airbus announced at last month’s NBAA show the World Ranger, a corporate version of the four-engine A340-200. “It is important to note this is not an ACJ2 but rather an entirely different aircraft based on the A340 with a range in excess of 8,000 nautical miles,” said Richard Gaona, Airbus’ v-p corporate jetliner.
Airbus Industrie has added the Honeywell Pegasus FMS to the options list in the Airbus Corporate Jetliner (ACJ). The acceptance also includes use of Pegasus equipment in the A319, A320 and A321 single-aisle airliners and follows a similar agreement reached last year for use of the Honeywell FMS in the A330 and A340.
Qatar Airways is planning to use its new Airbus Corporate Jetliner (ACJ) to replace a pair of Falcon 900s used by the government and ruling family. It will also be operated on European summer-season VIP scheduled service to destinations such as London; Geneva; and Nice, France; as well as for charter or wet-lease operations in the winter.
The Airbus A400M military airlifter will be ceremonially rolled out on June 26, but the plan to make a first flight by “the end of the summer” seems overly optimistic, unless rapid progress can be made with the TP400 engine testbed, which has not yet flown. About 50 hours are scheduled for this modified C-130, carrying one of the four big turboprops that will power the A400M.
Epic Aircraft continues development of its all-composite turboprop singles and very light jets, though without the $200 million in funding Indian billionaire Dr. Vijay Mallya pledged last September at the NBAA Convention.
Menzies Aviation Group employees Dennis Blair and Sylvie Greleau were two of the casualties on American Airlines Flight 587, the Airbus A300 that crashed in Queens, N.Y., last month. Blair, 55, was Menzies’ managing director and senior vice president for the Americas. Greleau, 40, was director of sales and marketing for the Americas. Greleau worked for Ogden Ground Services, before its sale to Menzies Aviation Group in November last year.