According to Dassault Aviation chairman and CEO Charles Edelstenne, the French aircraft manufacturer is planning on moving some of its activities out of Europe because of the weak dollar’s effect on its bottom line. The company’s production is based in Europe and its costs are calculated in euros, but it sells its airplanes in dollars. Since 2005, the U.S. dollar has depreciated 30 percent against the euro.
Dassault has selected International Communications Group (ICG) to provide Iridium satellite communication systems and handsets as options for the entire Falcon Jet line. ICG is at Booth No. 3705 with information about its ICS-100, ICS-200 and CIS-10 Iridium transceivers. Under the contract, Dassault will also offer to install ICG equipment, including cordless phone systems, ringer assemblies and PTA 12 dialer.
Dassault Falcon Service (Booth No. 1357) has spent much of this year preparing to provide support for the new Falcon 7X. The factory-owned service center at Paris Le Bourget Airport has already made a significant investment in training and tooling, and is expanding its facilities to accommodate the French airframer’s largest model.
A record attendance of more than 1,100 Falcon business jet owners, operators and maintenance technicians at the 25th Worldwide Maintenance & Operations Seminar was “proof that the Falcon family is alive and well,” according to Dassault Falcon Jet president and CEO John Rosanvallon. His remarks were made at the seminar’s opening session on June 14.
The three-engine, 5,950-nm-range Falcon 7X, certified on April 30, is Dassault Falcon’s proudest achievement (see story on page 6) and certainly it will be the Falcon model attracting the most visitors here at EBACE. But the French airframer also took time at its press conference yesterday to announce an upgraded version of the Falcon 2000, its popular twin-engine business jet.
Dassault Aviation is about to start researching more ecologically friendly aircraft designs as part of the European Commission-funded CleanSky joint technology initiative (JTI). With several partners, the French business jet manufacturer will focus on airframes and systems under the e117 million ($155 million) Eco-design integration technology demonstrator (ITD) project.
Dassault is increasingly using tactile virtual reality (VR) to design its Falcon business jets. Haptic (from the Greek for sense of touch) interfaces, such as force-feedback arms, allow engineers to better check maintainability early in the design phase. Along with several partners, the French manufacturer (Booth No. 7514) is integrating these tools into its Catia v5 product lifecycle management (PLM) suite of software programs.
Dassault’s fly-by-wire Falcon 7X is nearing the finish line and is expected to receive EASA and FAA type certification either by the end of this month or early next quarter. The first delivery–of S/N 05 to a European customer– should also take place in the second quarter, according to a Dassault Falcon Jet spokesman.
Dassault Aviation confirmed at its annual results briefing in Paris last month that it will launch a super-midsize Falcon, probably next year.
Dassault Aviation has filed a lawsuit seeking $60 million from Honeywell International over delivery delays of the EASy flight deck, Dassault and Honeywell officials confirmed here at NBAA. The suit contends that Honeywell misled Dassault by claiming that the EASy integrated avionics system, which is based on the Honeywell Primus Epic platform, was ready when in fact it needed more time for development.