Among turbofan manufacturers, Williams International remains tops with AIN readers for the support it provides to operators. Rolls-Royce, combined into one listing this year for the first time instead of being separated into R-R and R-R Deutschland, takes second place and, by barely a gnat’s whisker, bumps Pratt & Whitney Canada to third place.
Hawker Beechcraft 1900D, Denver, Colo., June 12, 2010–After landing at Denver International Airport, the turboprop twin was substantially damaged when its left main landing gear partially collapsed. The airplane was returning to the airport after the crew heard a loud bang as they retracted the gear on takeoff for the flight to Cheyenne, Wyo.
Business aircraft flight activity again returned to positive territory last month, increasing 1.7 percent from last year, after posting an almost 1-percent year-over-year decline in July, according to TraqPak data released yesterday by aviation services company Argus.
Australia’s Gippsland Aeronautics is receiving a $20 million infusion from its new owner, India’s Mahindra Group, to develop a 10-seat variant of its GA8 Airvan and launch the new 18-seat GA18 turboprop (formerly the Nomad). Mahindra has already invested $2 million to expand Gippsland’s business domestically, and the company plans to first complete the 10-seat GA10 and then focus on the GA18.
Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) could enter the regional turboprop segment as early as next year, if it proceeds with the launch of a 90-seat aircraft it is currently evaluating. The company had rejected the idea of a regional jet due to the crowded market already existing with segment leaders Embraer and Bombardier being joined by new aircraft from Mitsubishi, Sukhoi and AVIC.
Latin American countries are poised to play an important part in business aviation’s recovery, according to aviation consultant Brian Foley. “Latin America has historically been the third-largest market for business aircraft,” he said. There are nearly 31,000 private business jets and turboprops worldwide, with 62 percent based in the U.S. and Canada, followed by 13 percent in Europe and a “surprising” 12 percent in Latin America.
Cessna 208B Grand Caravan, Beagle Bay, Australia, Jan. 14, 2010–The turboprop single was cruising at approximately 9,500 feet en route to Koolan Island when the pilot noticed a drop in the engine torque indication and a corresponding decrease in engine oil pressure. He advanced the throttle, but the torque and oil pressure continued to decrease, so he diverted to the nearest airstrip.
French-Italian regional turboprop manufacturer ATR earlier this month unveiled a new partnership with Italian design house Giugiaro Design for the development of the cabin of its ATR 42/72-600 series. The makeover, called Armonia, reduces the aircraft’s total weight by the equivalent of two passengers and will be available as a retrofit on the ATR’s current -500 series.
Pratt & Whitney Canada has launched an all-new turboprop engine for regional aircraft to replace the 1,800- to 5,000-shp PW100 series. It expects to run the core demonstrator in the second half of next year.
Embraer has narrowed down the possibilities for its next phase of product development to two options, company CEO Frederico Curado told AIN on the eve of this Farnborough airshow. Either it will re-engine its existing line of E-Jets or develop an all-new, larger airliner–or even perhaps opt for both, likely by the end of this year.