Textron closed its $1.4 billion acquisition of Beechcraft on March 14, bringing together Cessna Aircraft and Beechcraft to form Textron Aviation. Scott Ernest, Cessna’s president and CEO since 2011, was tapped to lead Textron Aviation as CEO. Meanwhile, Bill Boisture, chairman and CEO of Beechcraft since 2009, was omitted from the Textron Aviation senior leadership team and “is moving on to new opportunities,” a Textron spokesman told AIN.
Hartzell Propeller Inc. introduced two- and three-blade versions of its new scimitar-shaped Trailblazer propeller for experimental and certified aircraft during Sun’n Fun’s annual International Fly-In & Expo at Lakeland Linder Field in Florida this week. To celebrate the company is continuing its support of aerobatic performers at the show, including Sean D. Tucker, Michael Goulian, Matt Chapman, Team AeroDynamix, and the Paul McCowan Parachute Team.
A preliminary NTSB accident report released last week provided details of the March 18 crash of a Eurocopter AS350 in Seattle. The pilot and the photographer aboard the helicopter were killed when it spun out of control shortly after lifting off from a TV station’s helipad near the downtown Space Needle tower. One person on the ground was seriously burned after the crash set his vehicle on fire near the crash site.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) said an additional go-around might have prevented a January 23 wet-runway excursion involving a chartered Fairchild SA-226 turboprop at Archerfield in Queensland.
Twenty air traffic controllers, all members of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (Natca), were honored for their skill, dedication and professionalism at the association’s March 26 Archie League Medal of Safety awards ceremony. The annual event spotlights controllers who saved at least one life during an emergency.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said today there will be “no time limit” in the search for a Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 that has been missing since March 8. On March 28, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) announced that the search area for Flight 370 had been refined to a new location nearly 700 miles north of the earlier search region of the southern Indian Ocean.
The NetJets Association of Shared Aircraft Pilots (NJASAP) and International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 284 executive boards launched the NetJets Unions Coalition last week, citing “minimal progress and unjustifiable demands” during ongoing contract talks. NJASAP represents the more than 3,000 NetJets pilots, while Local 284 represents some 500 NetJets dispatchers, flight attendants, maintenance controllers, mechanics and stock clerks.
Airbus Helicopters and Avicopter, partners on the EC175/AC352 medium-twin helicopter program, signed a joint production agreement yesterday for 1,000 rotorcraft. The signing took place at the Elysée Palace in Paris, witnessed by Chinese president Xi Jinping and French president François Hollande.
Embraer Executive Jets inaugurated its new service center today at Bertram Luiz Leupolz Airport in Sorocaba, Brazil. The 215,300-sq-ft facility has two hangars, one of which is dedicated to maintenance, repair and overhaul of Embraer business jets. Universal Aviation, the ground support division of Universal Weather & Aviation, was selected by Embraer to run an FBO at the facility and will use the other hangar for based and itinerant business aircraft. Amenities include passenger lounge, Internet access, conference rooms and crew rest area.
Aircell received STC approvals from the EASA for installation of in-flight connectivity and entertainment systems on Bombardier Challenger 300s. Specifically, the certifications cover the Aviator 300 datacom system and UCS 5000 “smart” router and media server. The company said the Aviator 300 STC data package is being offered to Challenger 300 operators for a “nominal fee” when they install the system at an authorized Aircell dealer and activate a new SwiftBroadband service plan. Aircell entered the European market in 2002 and the region is now its second-largest market.