The first production model of a new generation of Marine One U.S. Presidential helicopters made its initial flight earlier today at AgustaWestland’s plant in Yeovil, England. Designated by the U.S. Navy as VH-71, the helicopter is based on the three-engine AW101. The first block of five helicopters is scheduled to begin entering service next year. The Navy has been test flying four prototype block one aircraft over the past year.
Grand Junction, Colo.-based West Star Aviation has completed Supplemental Inspection Document (SID) inspections on 27 Cessna Conquest II twin turboprops, ensuring that the airframe is free of corrosion, cracks, debonding, abnormal wear and other anomalies.
Jet Aviation’s facility at Hannover, Germany, has been made an FAA repair station for the Gulfstream 100 and 200 jets, as well as the Westwind series. This allows it to handle scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, airframe and engine repairs, avionics modifications, inspections and defect rectifications for the former Galaxy/Israel Aircraft Industries models.
Boeing last Thursday moved the 787 prototype designated for fatigue testing (aircraft No. 4) from the final assembly factory in Everett, Wash., to another production bay at the facility, where assembly work will continue. The move paves the way for the second flight-test airplane (aircraft No. 3) to advance to the next position in the production line today.
Boeing has completed the power-on sequence for the first 787 Dreamliner, the company announced today. The process began early this month with a series of pre-test continuity checks to verify proper wiring connections. Upon completion of those checks, the Boeing team plugged in an external power cart and slowly began to bring full power into each segment of the system, beginning with the flight deck displays.
Boeing has begun the so-called power-on process for the 787 in Everett, Wash., the company confirmed today. The milestone marks the start of a procedure under which engineers power different sections of the airplane over a series of days, expected to culminate in full power-on by the end of this month.
Eclipse Aviation, the Albuquerque, N.M. company that premiered its Eclipse 500 twinjet in March 2000, said it has secured a launch customer that may make its dreams of solvency a reality.
Airbus claims to have found ways to make aircraft end-of-life dismantling a greener and more profitable business. Administrators of the Pamela (an acronym that stands for process for advanced management of end-of-life aircraft) demonstrator project in Tarbes, southwest France, concluded that about 85 percent of the dry weight of an aircraft can be recycled, rather than the currently accepted maximum of 60 percent.
Raytheon Aircraft and Jet Support Services Inc. (JSSI) are teaming up to offer turbine aircraft resale customers an hourly-fee maintenance program. Called Tip to Tail, the program covers the cost of airframe and avionics parts, as well as the cost of labor required to maintain those components.
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.