GE is close to having its 800-shp H80 turboprop flying on certified aircraft, thus throwing the gauntlet to the ubiquitous Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) PT6A engine. The first H80-equipped Ayres Thrush 510G cropduster was to be delivered in June. Smyrna Air Center is flight-testing an H80-powered King Air C90, aiming for STC in the third quarter of 2012.
Let L-410 Turbolet
A Czech regional court in Brno has declared Let Kunovice and Ayres Corp. successor Letecke Zavody (LZ) Aeronautical Industries bankrupt, once again leaving hundreds of 19-seat Let L-410 turboprops without a factory support structure.