Reno, Nev.-based Aerion is evaluating preliminary results of a new global market survey indicating strong demand for its proposed supersonic business jet. Preliminary data of the latest study confirms Aerion’s earlier research, which projected a 10-year market for about 300 supersonic jets. Meanwhile, Aerion plans to conduct a new series of flight tests on its natural laminar flow (NLF) wing design at NASA Dryden Flight Research Center.
Reno, Nev.-based Aerion today said it is evaluating preliminary results of a new global market survey indicating strong demand for its supersonic business jet. “It was time to take a fresh look at the potential for the Aerion supersonic jet, taking into account the globalization of the business jet market,” said Aerion vice chairman Brian Barents.
Making its first-ever appearance in the Middle East, the U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor is flying over each day from Al Dhafra airbase, Abu Dhabi, for its 14-minute display slot. Major Dave “Zeke” Skalicky is showing off America’s top-of-the-line stealth fighter with a serious of gravity-defying maneuvers.
Recessions come and go, but the quest to develop ever more efficient engines for the next generation of single-aisle aircraft continues. Given the time it takes to develop new powerplant technologies, which can be measured in decades, engine manufacturers have to be more confident than most of eventual recovery in the airline industry if the millions spent on research and development are not to be wasted.
Aerion is here in Dubai to tap what it believes could be strong market for the supersonic business jet (SSBJ) it intends to have certified in 2015. According to the U.S. company, it still holds letters of intent for about 50 of the aircraft and has had to refund only two deposits since the start of the financial crisis.
If paper was aluminum, glass and titanium instead of just paper, two Nevada-based groups developing supersonic business jet designs would have revolutionary aircraft ready to fly. To date, though, the specifications publicized by Aerion in Reno (Booth No.
The design of new airframes always depends heavily on availability of new engine types. The very light jet segment, for example, had to wait until engine manufacturers Pratt & Whitney Canada and Williams International designed smaller engines to power a new class of light jet, and the same is true on the upper end of the market, with new large jets spurring development of ever more powerful and efficient turbofans.
In 2009 the annual Product Support Survey produced by NBAA Convention News’ sister publication Aviation International News Williams International keeps the top slot in turbofans and GE stays last, but otherwise almost all the deck gets shuffled. Among turboprop/turboshaft manufacturers, Honeywell remains on top and Turbomeca falls into last place.
For reasons that are not clear, every engine manufacturer scored fewer points in this year’s survey than in last year’s, something that did not happen with the airframers and avionics makers.
Operators of the Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D series engines have a new option when it comes to overhaul. Aviation Turbines International (ATI) of O’Fallon, Mo., has added the powerplant to its hot section and repair services. ATI will be able to perform complete overhaul of the engine as well as accessories, such as fuel controls, bleed air valve, anti-ice valve, motive flow valve, fuel nozzles and fuel pumps.