European regional airlines strengthened their ties with their major airline counterparts from across the Atlantic last month, when Italy’s Air Dolomiti signed a code-share contract with United Airlines, and the UK’s Flybe entered a similar agreement with Continental Airlines.
As an ostentatious display of western military might, Farnborough 2002 was viewed as a high-profile terrorist target. Organizers were forced to impose a tight security cordon around the site and the event also featured much of the new-generation security technology that has come to the fore in the wake of September 11.
ATR 42-300, Los Conejos, Venezuela, Feb. 21, 2008–All 46 people aboard the Santa Barbara Airlines flight died when it crashed in a national park in the Andes at an altitude of 13,500 feet. The airplane had taken off from Merida, en route to Caracas. Fog was reported at higher altitudes.
Pratt & Whitney Canada has received type certification from Transport Canada and the European Aviation Safety Agency for the turboprop engine chosen to power the new ATR 600 Series, the PW127M. A derivative of the PW127F and PW127E engines that power today’s ATRs, the PW127M produces 5 percent more power than its predecessors.
Investigators analyzed data last month from the CVR and FDR recovered from the ATR 42-300 that crashed into a sheer cliff face in the Venezuelan Andes on February 21, killing all 46 occupants. Search crews found the wreckage of the Santa Barbara Airlines ATR in a rugged mountainous area in the Sierra La Culata National Park, a day after ATC lost contact with the pilots and local residents heard a loud crash.
ATR plans to deliver more than 60 new aircraft this year and expand production capacity to answer a surge in demand for its regional turboprops, while increasing its revenue to more than $1.3 billion. Meanwhile, the company continues to contemplate a bigger aircraft, possibly a stretched version of its newly announced ATR 72-600.
ATR announced regional turboprop orders from two South Pacific operators here yesterday. Air Tahiti has bought an ATR 72-500, valued at about $18 million. The 66-seater will operate under ETOPS-120 rules. Air Tahiti CEO Mate Galenon said the airline is now able to serve more islands, such as Hiva Oa in the Marquesas, which the airline could until now reach only with its smaller ATR 42s.
The Thales engineering team in Toulouse is developing a new flight deck for the -600 series ATR family, featuring five six- by eight-inch LCD displays and a configuration that is generally lighter in terms of hardware. At the same time, to keep the price down, the French electronics group has made some high-technology functions optional.
India’s fast-growing Kingfisher Airlines took delivery of its seventeenth ATR 72-500 last month. The Bangalore-based carrier holds a firm contract for 35 of the twin turboprops, all equipped with ATR’s “Elegance” cabin.
London-based investment conglomerate Lonrho unveiled plans last month to develop what it calls the first true pan-African airline with a new fleet of eight 66-seat ATR 72-500s.