The turboprop variant of the Extra-400, a pressurized six-seat, all-composite airplane built by Extra Flugzeugbau in Hunxe, Germany, made its first flight on April 26, but on April 30 after a 30-min flight the two test pilots on board were forced to make a landing short of the runway. Handling problems were the cause and the damage was minor, according to Tan Siekmann of Extra.
Italy’s Vulcanair expects to begin flying its single-turboprop VF600W by the end of this month, according to Remo De Feo, president of the company’s Manassas, Va.-based distributor. The fuselage of the nine-seat, 8,600-lb-mtow airplane was derived from the Vulcanair SF600A Canguro and its high wing from the Vulcanair 600 Viator. The airplane is powered by a Walter M601F-11 turboprop engine.
The next-generation version of the Pilatus PC-12 is certified and deliveries have begun, so the single-engine turboprop is dropping off the In The Works chart.
Pratt & Whitney Canada has received type certification from Transport Canada and the European Aviation Safety Agency for the turboprop engine chosen to power the new ATR 600 Series, the PW127M. A derivative of the PW127F and PW127E engines that power today’s ATRs, the PW127M produces 5 percent more power than its predecessors.
The Moscow Aerospace Salon, MAKS 2003, held in mid-August at the Gromov Flight Test Institute in Zhukovsky, attracted a dozen business jets and saw for the first time ever in Russia participation by U.S. Air Force aircraft (a B-52, F-15C/Es, F-16s, C-130 and KC-135) and daily flying by Italian and French display teams.
ATR plans to deliver more than 60 new aircraft this year and expand production capacity to answer a surge in demand for its regional turboprops, while increasing its revenue to more than $1.3 billion. Meanwhile, the company continues to contemplate a bigger aircraft, possibly a stretched version of its newly announced ATR 72-600.
Quest Aircraft recently delivered the second Kodiak turboprop single to come off the production line to Spokane Turbine Center. The new owner will offer flight andmaintenance training for the Kodiak, as well as for the airplane’s Garmin G1000 avionics and Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A engine, for the mission aviation community, aviation students and humanitarian organizations.
Saab Aircraft Leasing completed 28 transactions last year and by December, for the first time ever, it had placed all 137 of the 340A, 340B and 2000 models on its books.
“You’re in the noisiest seat of the airplane,” said ATR North America sales vice president to an AIN reporter, who had chosen the position to assess that very thing during an ATR 72-500 demonstration flight late last year. Another guest on board the 68-seat twin turboprop was Adrian Wijeyewickrema, manager of consulting services for Back Aviation Solutions of Washington, D.C.
India’s fast-growing Kingfisher Airlines took delivery of its seventeenth ATR 72-500 last month. The Bangalore-based carrier holds a firm contract for 35 of the twin turboprops, all equipped with ATR’s “Elegance” cabin.