Final assembly of GECI Aviation’s multi-purpose twin-turboprop SK-105 Skylander is to begin in the second half of this year, with a first flight scheduled for the second half of 2012 leading to type certification expected during the first half of 2013. This is six to nine months later than the original plan outlined by the French company.
Here at the Paris Air Show, ATR is showcasing its newly certified ATR 72-600 in the livery of Royal Air Maroc. Meanwhile, the European airframer’s final assembly line in Toulouse is to ramp up production of the 70-seater by 40 percent–in part driven by expectations of significant new orders to be placed at Le Bourget this week. Plans for a 90-seater could be firmed up next year.
After posting a slight 0.4-percent drop in April, business aircraft flight activity in the U.S. returned to positive territory last month, with a 2.7-percent year-over-year gain as a result of more flying at Part 91 private operators and fractional providers, according to TraqPak data released yesterday by aviation services company Argus.
Business aircraft flight activity in April dipped by 0.4 percent from a year ago, due primarily to a 7.7-percent drop in Part 135 turboprop flying, according to TraqPak data from aviation services company Argus. The fractional and Part 91 markets each saw flight activity increase, by 6.5 percent and 2.5 percent year-over-year, respectively.
JetNet today released results from its most-recent quarterly iQ Global Business Aviation Survey, which garnered responses from 506 business aircraft owners and operators in 57 countries. Respondents were asked about intentions to buy and sell turbine airplanes, aircraft purchase criteria, flight-hour utilization, brand reputations of airframe and engine manufacturers and desired product development improvements.
First-quarter 2011 business jet and turboprop sales and retail transactions were positive, according to data providers Amstat and Jetnet. About 14.2 percent of the worldwide business aviation jet fleet is for sale, down from 14.7 percent three months ago. Meanwhile, pre-owned turboprop inventories dropped to 11.6 percent from 11.9 percent.
Turboprop engine specialist Blackhawk of Waco, Texas, is celebrating its 300th engine upgrade at this year’s EBACE. The customer in question is Germany’s Reinhardt Michel, who owns and flies a Piper PA-31T Cheyenne, purchased in 2004.
Tam Aviação Executiva has signed an agreement with GE Aviation to become an authorized service center for M601 and H80 turboprop engines. The MRO will offer line maintenance, removals and re-installations of engines and line-replaceable units and engine spares. GE Aviation will provide Tam AE with material support and training. A spokesman for GE told AIN that Tam AE is a new industry partner.
Business aircraft flight activity last month dipped by 0.4 percent from a year ago, due primarily to a steep drop in Part 135 turboprop and light jet flying, according to TraqPak data released yesterday by aviation services company Argus. The fractional and Part 91 markets each saw flight activity increase, by 6.5 percent and 2.5 percent year-over-year, respectively.
In the first quarter, general aviation airplane shipments fell 4.6 percent, from 390 aircraft last year to 372 this year, according to data released today by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA). However, GA airplane billings dived by 19.6 percent year-over-year to $3.7 billion in the first three months, due primarily to a 22-percent drop in business jet shipments, from 164 aircraft to 128.