The Russian government has finalized a follow-on order for four Tupolev Tu-204-300s with VIP interiors. The Kremlin’s Special Air Detachment, the government flight department that transports Russia’s senior political leaders and high-ranking officials, already operates two of the type.
Growth in global airline traffic–both passenger and cargo–continued a positive trend during the month of July, as revenue passenger kilometers increased 5 percent and freight ton kilometers rose 1.2 percent over the same month in 2012, according to a pair of reports issued last week by the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
Indonesia signed a letter of offer and acceptance (LOA) with the U.S. government to buy eight new Boeing AH-64E Apache helicopters during U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s recent trip to Southeast Asia. The Pentagon valued the transaction at $500 million; it represents the first sale of Apaches to Indonesia.
The U.S. Navy’s estimated $7 billion Next Generation Jammer (NGJ) development does not duplicate any existing airborne electronic attack capability. But the potential exists for some “overlap” with electronic attack systems being developed by other U.S. military services, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) advises.
NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen is joining Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation ministers in Tokyo tomorrow to unveil new guidelines designed to “catalyze” the growth of business aviation in the region. The guidelines are meant to provide a framework for individual Asian countries as they begin to draft business aircraft-specific registration and operations regulations. Joining Bolen will be U.S. Deputy Secretary of Transportation John Porcari and other national government transportation leaders.
U.S. delegate Eleanor Norton (D-D.C.) has proposed an amendment to the Fiscal Year 2014 transportation appropriations bill that would overturn the FAA ban on most civil helicopter operations within the District of Columbia. Norton’s amendment would pave the way for the re-opening of the South Capitol Street Heliport (09W, SCSH), which has been closed to most public traffic since 2005 to accommodate security concerns. The heliport was opened in 1998 and hosted 41 corporate operators. Public access was limited after the terrorist attacks on Sept.
Jet Aviation has extended its facilities at Berlin Tegel International Airport to include a new customer lounge and crew briefing offices at Tegel’s general aviation center. The expansion is in response to customer demand for full ground-handling services at Tegel, it said. The company opened its Berlin FBO in February to provide FBO services at Schönefeld and Tegel International Airports. The new customer lounge and crew briefing offices at Tegel are in addition to Jet Aviation’s existing crew and passenger lounge and operations office at Schönefeld.
The corruption trial of former AgustaWestland CEOs Giuseppe Orsi and Bruno Spagnolini is set to resume this month, with defense lawyers prepared to call an international witness list of top government officials and industry leaders. The men are charged with orchestrating bribes in connection with the sale of 12 AW101s to the government of India in 2010 when Orsi was CEO of Finmeccanica unit AgustaWestland and Spagnolini was his deputy.
As Janet Napolitano departs Washington for sunnier climes in California, some names have begun to surface on her replacement as Secretary of Homeland Security. One of those mentioned is Boston police commissioner Edward Davis.
Congress left Washington for its annual break without taking any action on FAA funding for Fiscal Year 2014, which begins October 1. Many other government agencies–including the rest of the Department of Transportation–also are awaiting appropriations.