Nextant Aerospace founder and CEO Kenn Ricci said yesterday here at NBAA 2012 that his company will announce its next business jet remanufacturing program–dubbed “Project XXT”–in early January. It will be a midsize jet, he told AIN, with service entry scheduled for 2015. Ricci expects a mockup of the aircraft to be at the NBAA show next year, with first flight expected about 15 to 18 months from now.
Tamarack Aerospace has unveiled the first of what it promises will be a series of active winglet systems designed to relieve wing bending loads caused by winglets. The company’s active technology load alleviation system (Atlas) is slated to be certified and available for installation on Cirrus SR22 G1 and G2 piston singles early next year, but Tamarack is also testing Atlas, which includes new winglets, on a Cessna CJ1. In fact, it brought an Atlas-equipped CJ1 to the NBAA Convention this week in Orlando, Fla., and is giving demonstration rides during the show.
Tamarack Aerospace Group (Booth No. 4171) revealed during its press conference yesterday that it is taking deposits at NBAA’12 for its active technology load alleviation system (Atlas) active winglet system for the Cessna Citation CJ1. “We’re accepting $10,000 refundable deposits here at the show,” said Brian Willet, vice president of sales and flight operations for the company. “The cost of the Atlas kit is estimated to be $196,000, and we are projecting it will take 80 manhours to install the active winglets,” he continued.
Whelen Engineering (Booth No. 2789), a privately held company based in Chester, Conn., has been manufacturing aircraft lighting for more than 60 years. At this year’s NBAA Convention the company announced that it was chosen to be the supplier for the LED wingtip lighting on the Cessna Citation Sovereign block point winglet upgrade program. The wingtip unit incorporates both anti-collision and position lights using low-draw, extra bright and reliable LED technology. The product is TSOed as a line-replaceable unit. –A.L.
Aviation Partners (API) in September received FAA supplemental type certificate (STC) approval for its “high-mach blended winglets” on Dassault Falcon 50 series jets. EASA approval is expected to follow by year-end, according to Seattle, Wash.-based API (Booth No. 5035) .
BLR Aerospace announced that it has delivered its 500th winglet system. The buyer of the 500th system is the FAA, which is also the company’s largest customer. In May the FAA ordered BLR Aerospace LED-light-equipped winglets for its fleet of 18 Beechcraft King Air 300s. The FAA’s first winglet-modified King Air 300 is already flying, and the FAA is currently installing the winglets on its third King Air 300. The FAA King Air 300s are used to flight check navaids, airport lighting and IFR approaches.
Cessna Aircraft launched a new version of its midsize Citation Sovereign today at the NBAA Convention, and invited show attendees to visit the new aircraft, which has been under development for the past year-and-a-half, at the static display. President and CEO Scott Ernest revealed that three of the upgraded Sovereigns are currently flying and have thus far accumulated approximately 800 flight-test hours.
At the NBAA Convention today, Dassault Falcon introduced yet another new version of its Falcon 2000 super-midsize twin. The new Falcon 2000LXS combines the range and amenities of the Falcon 2000LX with the short-field capabilities of the Falcon 2000S. The $32.8 million, Pratt & Whitney Canada PW308C-powered Falcon 2000LXS will replace the 2000LX when it gains certification in 2014.
Boeing Business Jets (BBJ), yesterday, announced plans to build the BBJ MAX, the VIP version of Boeing’s 737 MAX commercial jet and next iteration of BBJ’s executive airliners. The MAX brings the BBJ into the Leap era, using the same CFM International Leap 1-B engines and winglets as on the 737 MAX, which provide a range increase of more than 14 percent, according to Boeing.
Aeronautics engineer Richard Whitcomb–whose research at NASA produced the area rule, supercritical wing and winglets–was posthumously inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame earlier this month. He died in 2008 at the age of 88. During Whitcomb’s almost four decades at NASA his “fundamental insight into aerodynamics and his practical solutions led to three of the most significant and practical contributions to aeronautics in the 20th century,” said NASA Langley Research Center director Lesa Roe.