The industry’s fortunes have changed dramatically in the last three years, swinging wildly from the lowest of lows to almost unimaginable heights. For business aircraft makers, the current “cycle” likely will be remembered as one of the biggest roller-coaster rides in the industry’s history. Perhaps no company is more illustrative of the rapid turnaround than Dassault Falcon Jet.
Dassault Falcon 7X
Luigi Mattia, a Canadian mathematician with more than 25 years of experience in the aerospace industry, was recently named vice president of the Business and Regional Aircraft Business Unit of Messier-Dowty, based in Toronto. Mattia will also become president of Messier-Dowty Inc., the Canadian subsidiary of Messier-Dowty International.
Dassault president Charles Edelstenne yesterday made note of the rapidly growing business aviation industry, saying that Dassault’s own sales are exploding no less rapidly.
Cabin electronics specialist PGA Avionics (Booth No. 1473) is introducing at NBAA an in-flight entertainment system called Paradize 3, notable for incorporating digital video-on-demand capability.
Paradize 3 will be offered for sale next year, so PGA is exhibiting only some components of the system here in Orlando. As described by the manufacturer, the system’s network links an aircraft’s IFE system and cabin lighting.
Aerion SSBJ–Aerion continues on track with development efforts for its supersonic business jet. High-speed testing on the Aerion supersonic natural-laminar-flow wing was expected to be carried out last month by using a rocket sled to achieve the necessary Mach 1.5 test speed.
NetJets Europe’s order for 24 Dassault Falcon 7Xs reflects a powerful declaration of intent for both companies. For Dassault, the deal–valued at $1 billion–is its largest single business jet sale ever and a vital fillip for the 7X program, which now has an order book for 116 copies of the fly-by-wire trijet.
Certification of Dassault’s 69,000-pound (maximum takeoff weight) 7X remains on track for early next year. Although the 7X has yet to be certified, more than 40 of the $39.2 million long-range trijets are already in various stages of production.
Success of Falcon 7X Sales Encourages Dassault’s Expansion Plans at Little Rock
Back in 2003, when then U.S. National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice was advising the White House on how to handle the diplomatic fall-out from the transatlantic row over the Iraq war she reportedly urged President Bush to “Punish the French, ignore the Germans and forgive the Russians.”
LABACE, the Latin American Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition, is a success, at least in terms of scale, but the show is not without its growing pains.
Cosponsored by NBAA and the Associação Brasileira de Aviação Geral (ABAG, the Brazilian association of general aviation), it is a modest exhibition, especially when compared with the much larger EBACE and the NBAA Convention.