National Aerospace Laboratories Saras, Bangalore, India, March 6, 2009–The number-two prototype of the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6-powered Saras crashed on its 49th test flight, killing three test pilots. The Indian National Aerospace Laboratories expects to certify the 14-seat Saras next year.
The number-two prototype Saras twin-turboprop crashed on March 6 in India during its 49th test flight, killing the three test pilots on board. The third prototype of the 14-seat Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6-powered twin is under construction and will be production-conforming. Indian certification of the Saras is expected next year.
India’s National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) still plans to go ahead with the project to develop the country’s first indigenous airplane despite the March 6 crash of its number-two Saras prototype. “The Saras project will continue; we will not shelve it,” SK Brahmachari, director general of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), told the press yesterday.
Emivest Aerospace’s SJ30 light business jet established an unofficial speed record for its weight class on November 10, flying from London to Dubai in seven hours and seven minutes, including a 41-minute refueling stop in Istanbul, Turkey.
Dornier Seaplane brought its all-composite twin-turboprop Seastar to the static display at last month’s NBAA Convention. The Seastar is already FAA and EASA certified, but Dornier will need another $150 million of funding to start production, now planned for late 2010. Two Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6-135A engines are mounted fore-and-aft (“push-me-pull-you”) on top of the wing.
German seaplane manufacturer Dornier Aircraft this week at the NBAA Convention in Orlando, Fla., announced plans to manufacture and sell the $6 million Seastar flying boat in the U.S. Former Adam Aircraft president Joe Walker will head the program as CEO of the recently formed Dornier Seaplane Co. Dornier Seaplane is independent of other Dornier Aircraft businesses and is wholly funded by the Dornier family.
Elbit Systems of America’s (Booth No. 3113) Kollsman general aviation vision system (GAViS)–a head-down enhanced-vision system–is undergoing installation and certification on both the Piaggio Avanti II turboprop twin and Sikorsky S-76 helicopter. GAViS houses an infrared sensor in a single, aerodynamic line-replaceable unit, which allows for easy installation on an aircraft’s exterior.
German seaplane manufacturer Dornier Aircraft on Sunday announced plans to manufacture and sell the Seastar flying boat in the U.S. Former Adam Aircraft president Joe Walker will head the program as CEO of the recently formed Dornier Seaplane Company.
Italy’s Piaggio Aero has introduced a third cabin choice for its six- to seven-seat Avanti II twin-turboprop, and expects to almost double production this year by ramping up its manufacturing and outfitting processes.
It’s fitting that the first museum to which Raytheon Aircraft is donating a Beech Starship–the Kansas Aviation Museum–is located in Wichita, the city where the composite twin-turboprop pusher was conceived, designed and built. In June Raytheon Aircraft disclosed to AIN (July, page 1) that it planned to destroy all 50 Starships produced because continued support is cost prohibitive.