Alenia Aermacchi’s first pre-production M-346 lead-in fighter trainer made its official maiden flight on July 7 with Aermacchi chief test pilot Olinto Cecconello at the controls. The jet, painted in “Finmeccanica red” in a nod to Alenia Aermacchi’s parent company, had made three previous flights, all occurring the week before the first official public flight pictured here.
The Society of British Aerospace Companies (SBAC) announced last week that it appointed Bruno Esposito as its new director of civil air transport. Esposito’s 30 years in aviation include pilot and air traffic control experience, followed by senior industry positions with Finmeccanica and BAE Consulting Services. He begins his new role at SBAC in September.
Selex Sistemi Integrati of Italy has introduced its first small radar, weighing only 55 pounds and aimed at “homeland protection” applications. Lyra 10, a prototype of which Selex is displaying at the show (Hall 4 Stand A5), can detect “people, vehicles, boats and low-altitude helicopters up to a range of 24 km (15 miles),” said the Finmeccanica company.
Italy’s Finmeccanica agreed to acquire U.S. defense electronics group DRS Technologies a month before the U.S. Government Accountability Office announced its decision supporting Boeing’s appeal against the award of the KC-X military tanker contract to EADS/Northrop Grumman. It is questionable whether the GAO’s decision signals a wider U.S. intent to block foreign encroachment on the U.S. defense market.
Treaties that aim to clear longstanding bureaucratic hurdles to the transfer of defense technology to Australia and the UK were sent to the U.S. Congress for ratification last month. Both countries have complained publicly about U.S. Defense and State Department procedures that inhibit industrial and military cooperation. A year ago, U.S. President George W.
As a district court in Weilheim, Germany, opened insolvency proceedings against Fairchild Dornier on July 1, the fate of the Bavarian regional jet builder hung on the fading hope that a large established aerospace company might come to its rescue.
Boeing announced today it has agreed to acquire Vought Aircraft Industries’ interest in Global Aeronautica, the South Carolina fuselage subassembly facility for the 787 Dreamliner. Upon completion of the transaction, Global Aeronautica will become a 50-50 joint venture between Boeing and Alenia North America, a subsidiary of Italy’s Alenia Aeronautica–a Finmeccanica company.
Few have doubted Russia’s aerospace engineering capabilities but many observers have questioned weather the country could deliver the marketing and customer support needed to successfully export civil airliners.
The newly formed Superjet International joint venture–based in Venice, Italy–carries the responsibility for alleviating any lingering doubts.
Asia is a prime potential market for Selex Systemi Integrati’s turnkey capability in air defense systems, air traffic management and airport communications systems. The Italian group, which set up shop in Singapore in 1972, most recently supplied mobile air traffic control systems to the Singapore Air Force and has established a terminal maneuvering area system for the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) at Changi Airport.
According to Alenia Aeronautica, it is meeting its commitments as a supplier for the Boeing 787 and has not contributed to the delays the program is suffering. The Italian company delivers complete composite fuselage sections to Global Aeronautica, its joint venture with Vought in Charleston, South Carolina, which subsequently adds components to the structures before shipping them to Boeing’s final assembly line in Everett, Washington.