Like those in the U.S., European airlines are rolling out guidelines to allow passengers to use portable electronic devices (PED) during all phases of flight. The European Aviation Safety Agency is also looking for a long-term solution that will allow passengers to make telephone calls from their mobile devices as well. If approved, the ability to make cellphone calls would be allowed only on European carriers.
Garmin released software updates yesterday for GLO, a remote GPS/Glonass sensor for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets, that adds new capabilities. Originally, GLO could provide accurate GPS data to one device via Bluetooth. With the latest software update, GLO can connect via Bluetooth with up to four devices simultaneously. A few changes have also been made to the functionality of the power button, which will now reduce the likelihood of GLO inadvertently turning on when stored in a flight bag.
Honeywell Aerospace has signed an avionics dealership agreement with Saudi Arabia-based Arabian Aircraft Services (Arabasco). The agreement is intended to boost installation capability and reduce servicing time for Honeywell avionics-equipped business and general aviation operators across the Middle East. Arabasco is also a Honeywell-approved service center for avionics in Saudi Arabia and can provide retrofits, modifications and upgrades, maintenance and services to operators of Honeywell-equipped aircraft.
Quest Aircraft’s Kodiak turboprop single received certification from Venezuela’s civil aviation authority, the Instituto Nacional de Aviación Civil. The Kodiak is now certified in 13 countries, with more new approvals expected by year-end, the company said. The first Venezuelan customer will be taking delivery in the next few days, Quest said. He plans to operate the aircraft, which is equipped with the external cargo compartment option and features the Timberline interior, for personal and business use.
Marenco Swisshelicopter will roll out its SKYe SH09 single-turbine light helicopter on November 28 in Mollis, Switzerland. An offshoot of a machine-tool specialist, the company is emphasizing the SH09’s carbon-fiber airframe, which for prominence on the prototype it has left unpainted in “key areas, such as the tailboom and shrouded tail rotor.” The 5,800-pound aircraft was announced in 2011, at which time its first flight was planned for 2012.
Ethiopian Airlines signed a 10-year “OnPoint” maintenance agreement with GE Aviation for its GE90 engines. Under the agreement, GE (Pavilion A9) will maintain GE90 engines on 16 Ethiopian Boeing 777s. OnPoint agreements are customized service agreements tailored to the operational and financial needs of airline customers, GE said. The agreements are designed to help lower customers’ cost of ownership and maximize their use of assets.
Nextant Aerospace (Chalet B17) has big expectations for the Indian market for its 400XTi light jet and C90XT twin turboprop, which are respectively remanufactured Beechjet 400A/400XPs and King Air C90s. In fact, India has the largest entry-level jet fleet in Asia–17 percent of the $1.7 billion market–while deliveries in this segment have doubled over the past five years.
Thales (Stand 845) is demonstrating a futuristic in-flight entertainment (IFE) system using eye-tracking and gesture controls here at Dubai 2013. It could enter into service in two to three years from now in business and first classes, according to Christopher Mondragon, product design senior manager.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau’s final report on the 2011 crash of a Eurocopter AS355F2 cites spatial disorientation as one of the reasons the pilot lost control of the helicopter and crashed into terrain, killing all three people aboard. The helicopter was being operated under visual flight rules in an area east of Lake Eyre in South Australia, the lowest point in the country at 50 feet below sea level.
The FAA is requesting comments on the draft of an advisory circular (AC 120-27F) to provide operators with guidance on developing and receiving approval for a weight-and-balance control program for aircraft operated under Part 91, Part 91 Subpart K and Parts 121, 125 and 135. Comments must be received by December 7.