The first EC725 to be fully assembled in Brazil was handed over to the Brazilian navy on June 17, Airbus Helicopters said. The previous 11 EC725s received by the Brazilian armed forces were only partially assembled in Brazil, or supplied direct from Airbus Helicopters’ production line in France.
The Brazilian air force formally committed to the KC-390 airlifter last month, signing a $3.2 billion contract for 28 aircraft in a ceremony at Embraer’s São Paulo facility. The event was attended by Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff. Final assembly of the first of two KC-390 prototypes is slated to start this month.
Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff signed a new law last week that more clearly prioritizes the aviation accident investigation process. First proposed after the Congressional investigation of the 2006 Gol/Legacy Amazon midair, Law 12970/2014 establishes mechanisms to protect information sources, especially voluntary testimony, from court use (though cockpit recordings can be used); makes airlines or owners responsible for wreckage and its removal; and clarifies investigative responsibilities.
Embraer Executive Jets inaugurated its new service center today at Bertram Luiz Leupolz Airport in Sorocaba, Brazil. The 215,300-sq-ft facility has two hangars, one of which is dedicated to maintenance, repair and overhaul of Embraer business jets. Universal Aviation, the ground support division of Universal Weather & Aviation, was selected by Embraer to run an FBO at the facility and will use the other hangar for based and itinerant business aircraft. Amenities include passenger lounge, Internet access, conference rooms and crew rest area.
Quest Aircraft appointed Quest Aircraft do Brasil as the Kodiak dealer for Brazil. The São José dos Campos-based dealer accepted the first Kodiak to be based in Brazil last week, and the turboprop single is now on a demonstration tour in the Latin American country. Quest has delivered five Kodiaks to customers in Latin America over the past two months, so it is optimistic about the aircraft’s prospects in Brazil. The Kodiak received Brazilian certification in 2012 and is certified in 16 countries, with several additional certifications “imminent.”
Helibras has announced the opening of a new customer support center (CSC) at Atibaia, near the three main airfields of São Paulo. The facility forms part of Eurocopter’s global network and mirrors those established by the company in Hong Kong, Dallas and Marignane (France). Some 75 percent of the Brazilian Eurocopter/Helibras fleet is based in the southeast of Brazil.
Plans to develop São Paulo’s first privately owned business aviation airport appear to have hit a roadblock, with local authorities recently refusing a construction permit for Aerodromo Privado Rodoanel (Beltway Private Airport), despite the airport’s obtaining Brazil federal government approval on July 25. The local authorities have rejected the airport on the grounds that the project is not part of the city’s master development plan and because of concerns about a nearby reservoir.
Helicopter service, support and manufacturing specialist Helibras (Helicópteros do Brasil) recently received authorization from France’s DGAC aviation authority to produce the Eurocopter EC225 in Brazil.
The wave of protests that has rocked Brazil since June has included opposition to government spending on airports, the blocking of airport access as a way to get attention, and also complaints by the aviation community about government failure to address its needs. In preparation for the 2014 soccer World Cup, stadiums have been built or renovated all over the country, and investments have been made in transportation infrastructure, including airports.
Gulfstream Aerospace has appointed Luiz Sandler as its new regional vice president of sales for South America. He is replacing Bill Arrazola, who recently retired. His sales territory spans Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, French Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname and Uruguay.
Since 2007, Sandler served as sales director with International Jet Traders, which is Gulfstream’s sales representative for Brazil. Before that he was Embraer’s regional sales manager for Latin America.
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