General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI) conducted the first flight of its Predator XP remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) on June 27 at the U.S. Army’s Yuma Proving Ground range complex in Arizona. The Predator XP is an unarmed export version of the iconic RPA.
Senior Aerospace AMT of Columbia, South Carolina, manufacturer of structural parts for commercial aircraft OEMs, announced on the eve of the Farnborough Airshow establishing a satellite operation in the Charleston, South Carolina area to serve Boeing South Carolina, which manufactures portions of the 787 Dreamliner.
The Munich factory of Europrop International (EPI) is ramping up production of its 11,000-shp TP400 turboprop engine to an annual 96 units to support Airbus A400M military transport deliveries in the coming years.
At the same, EPI is carefully following the recent entry-into-service of the first three aircraft, without having any major issues to report. For the joint-venture company’s four partners–Rolls-Royce, Snecma, ITP and MTU–this phase is thus looking much quieter than during the A400M’s troubled development.
Camarillo, California-based Merex Group (here with subsidiary Kellstrom Defense in Hall 3 Stand D12) has announced the acquisition of specialized tooling and inventory to manufacture spares for the F-5, T-38 and F-16 fighters. This gives Merex the capability to produce the wing leading and trailing edge, vertical stabilizer and horizontal stabilizer as replacement parts. Sierra Aerospace of Simi Valley, California, sold the surplus equipment. The Merex Group will make additional investments in 3D computer aided design to improve the dimensional accuracy and quality of the final product.
Rolls-Royce here announced the first run of the Trent XWB-97 turbofan on Tuesday. Selected as the sole engine for the higher-thrust version for the Airbus A350-1000, The 97,000-lb-thrust Trent XWB-97 will begin test flights in 2016. Entry into service is pegged for 2017. The turbofan’s increased thrust is obtained by a combination of new high-temperature turbine technology, a larger core and advanced fan aerodynamics, Rolls-Royce (here at Hall 4 Stand H3) said.
Aircraft support specialist AJW Aviation (Outdoor Exhibit 10) has been chosen by Air Serbia to provide a five-year, hourly cost maintenance service to supply spares for its Airbus narrow-body fleet. The contract covers seven Airbus A319s and two A320s.
AJW Aviation is building a network of support hubs in Eastern Europe to provide greater support and minimize AOG situations, although a 24/7 AOG service is also provided.
The Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing (CCAM) announced that Airbus has joined the consortium and that Aerojet Rocketdyne is expanding its membership role.
Boeing’s new 777X features an advanced fly-by-wire flight control system that will be powered by BAE Systems electronics. The system is called the Integrated Flight Control Electronics and Air Data Reference Function, and not only controls the 777X’s flight surfaces, but also adds further functionality, such as load alleviation, high lift and folding wingtips.
Unison Industries (Hall 4 Stand C14) has launched a new high-energy, high-temperature turbine engine ignition system designed to meet the “growing trend of climbing engine temperatures and combustion pressures.”
The Acclimate ignition system features solid-state electronics, with exciter performance that can vary depending on specific combustion and environmental requirements, according to Unison. This helps optimize ignition performance and overall system life, the company added.
The second quarter of 2014 has been good to ST Aerospace, which booked $520 million worth of contracts during the quarter.
ST Aerospace (Chalet B18/19) booked a five-year agreement with a regional airline in the U.S. for heavy maintenance on 42 Embraer E-170 and E-175 jets. The maintenance will be done at ST Aerospace’s San Antonio, Texas facility.
In Guangzhou, ST Aerospace received FAA, EASA and Chinese CAAC Part 145 approval. This makes it possible for the company to service aircraft registered under those authorities’ frameworks.