26.10.2009
FLUG REVUE

News Update 26 October 2009 - News in Brief

Our weekly news roundup from around the aerospace industry.

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Elbit Systems of America announced the 500th Enhanced Vision System (EVS) operating within the Gulfstream family of aircraft. Kollsman and Gulfstream began their mutual commitment to this industry-leading technology eight years ago and today there are 464 Gulfstream aircraft flying with EVS I and 36 Gulfstream aircraft flying with EVS II. Additionally, EVS is a key enabler in the Air Transport market, with plans to install EVS in all FedEx aircraft. Gulfstream and Kollsman made history by certifying the first EVS on business jets in 2001, and with the recent certification of the G-150, the Kollsman EVS II is now offered as a standard fit or option on all Gulfstream models of aircraft.
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Dr. Piyasvasti Amranand commenced his term as President of Thai Airways International Public Company Limited. Piyasvasti joins THAI after having served most recently as chairman of the advisory panel to Kasikornbank Bank's CEO. He is a graduate of Oxford University, England. Thereafter, he was awarded a Master's and Ph.D. degree from the London School of Economics, with a strong background in mathematics, energy and the environment. Piyasvasti also headed Thailand's National Energy Policy Office that transformed the country's energy sector in the 1990s and was former Minister of Energy. Piyasvasti said he wants to bring all his experience and knowledge to bear on the current issues facing THAI, in an effort to continually improve operational performance and the Company's financial position. “I am under no illusion about the challenges facing aviation today, and that includes the challenges facing THAI,” Piyasvasti said.
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Rolls-Royce North American Technologies has achieved a major milestone in the Adaptive Versatile Engine Technology (ADVENT) demonstrator program, and was selected by the U.S. Air Force to proceed with Phase II development. Next steps for this key USAF technology program will include the integration of a variety of advanced technologies, component testing and development of a technology demonstrator core and engine. This authorization to proceed follows successful completion earlier this year of a series of tests and analysis on a technology demonstrator core and adaptive engine. Designed to provide significant improvement in average fuel consumption, this core and engine will be available for future U.S. military aerospace platforms, including medium or large unmanned air systems.
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Airbus' A318 Elite has successfully passed the milestone of its tenth aircraft delivery, highlighting the widespread and growing appeal of this new member of the family, which was launched less than four years ago, in November 2005. The A318 Elite has won more than 25 sales in Asia, Europe and the Middle East - about a quarter of the 100-plus sales won by the Airbus ACJ Family to date. Comlux of Switzerland took delivery of the first A318 Elite in 2007, and recently became the first to take delivery of a second for VVIP charter, which Airbus is displaying at this year's NBAA show. The A318 Elite has met with great success on the VVIP charter market, and is currently available for charter from Global Jet Concept in Geneva, as well as Comlux Aviation in Zurich.
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At the 2009 National Business Aircraft Association (NBAA) Convention in Orlando, Florida, Pilatus reports that its flagship PC-12 NG program is a continued success story despite the challenges in the world economy. The PC-12 NG was certified in the spring of 2008, and Pilatus has delivered more than 140 examples of this latest generation model worldwide. Corporate flight departments, owner-pilots, fractional providers, air ambulance companies, and government agencies operating the fleet have accumulated more than 27,000 flight hours on the PC-12 NG during that time.
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Pilatus Aircraft announced the selection of OK Business Aircraft, s.r.o as its new dealership for south-eastern Europe. OK Business Aircraft will be responsible for sales, marketing and service of the PC-12 NG in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, and Albania.
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Rockwell Collins announced that its HGS-6250 Head-Up Guidance System (HGS) has been certified for Gulfstream G450 and G550 aircraft. The announcement was made at the National Business Aviation Association's (NBAA) Annual Meeting & Convention taking place this week. The HGS-6250 will be standard equipment on Gulfstream G450, G550, G650 aircraft, and optional equipment on the G250, G350 and G500 aircraft. The HGS-6250 provides precise head-up guidance cues to enhance situational awareness during all phases of flight. With the advanced LCD and LED-based technology of the Rockwell Collins HGS, combined with live infrared imagery from the Gulfstream Enhanced Vision System™, operators have the flexibility to land more places, more often, in more weather conditions.
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Rockwell Collins announced the availability of a Pro Line 4 to Pro Line 21 display upgrade for Dassault Falcon 2000 aircraft. "Our Pro Line family of avionics offerings are designed to provide operators with modernization features for their existing aircraft available on today's newest and most advanced Pro Line 21 flight decks," said Greg Irmen, vice president and general manager, Business and Regional Systems for Rockwell Collins. "Our Pro Line 4 to Pro Line 21 display upgrade gives Falcon 2000 operators the capabilities they need to operate more effectively, and the ability to accommodate future airspace requirements." Rockwell Collins' open architecture approach to avionics allows Pro Line 21 displays to interface with the existing Pro Line 4 avionics package, utilizing existing sensors, radios and autopilots.
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Norway's new NH90 helicopter landed for the first time on a Coast Guard vessel of the North Cape-class. This happened at Helligvær, in Vestfjorden, initially under very good weather conditions. The Coast Guard vessel Nordkapp will in future be the platform for operational testing of the NH90, which will determine if the helicopter meets requirements for take-off and landing, especially in terms of the ship's pitch and roll movements. The test began with the synchronization of the measurement equipment, and testing of radio equipment on the deck and around the vessel. Eventually, the take-off and landing tested, as the ship's movements began to increase.
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U-2 aircraft No. 068-0337 was accepted by Air Force officials in 1968, and exceeded the 25,000th hour of flight Oct. 18, 2009, in a mission out of Southwest Asia. The plane, with a wingspan of 105 feet, is maintained by military members and civilian contractors of the 380th Air Expeditionary Wing, and is the second high-altitude intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance plane to reach this milestone. The first U-2, aircraft No. 068-0329, clocked a quarter of 100,000 hours April 4, 2009. These two are the first of 33 U-2 airframes worldwide to achieve this feat.
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Cessna comes to the 62nd National Business Aviation Association Meeting (NBAA) and Convention with optimism that the business aviation market is thawing. “I'm far from ready to call a turnaround, but we do continue to see some encouraging developments,” said Cessna Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Jack J. Pelton. “Financing is more readily available, used aircraft inventory is lowering and prices for used aircraft have increased for the first time in several quarters. Average Daily Utilization figures for the Citation fleet have stopped dropping and bookings for maintenance work are on the rise. We are seeing signs of stabilization and some indicators that the business jet market is starting to move in a positive direction. Single engine retail sales have been particularly strong in recent weeks which is usually a forerunner for the rest of the product line.”
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The test-bed registration RA-64048, based on a series Tupolev Tu-204 airframe, took to the air for the first time after one of its Perm PS-90A engines was replaced by an experimental PS-90A2. Various checks at different thrust settings were carried out. After one hour 25 minutes in the air, the test-bed landed safely. The engine demonstrated stable operation at all stages of the flight. The PS-90A2 is a unified twin-spool turbofan engine with high bypass ratio, mixing of inner and outer flows, thrust reverser in the outer contour and extensive noise-suppression system. It is a further evolution of the PS-90A series with further improved performance to match the world's highest standards. The PS-90A2 and PS-90A are interchangeable. Compared to the current production version, the PS-90A2 has lifecycle cost decreased by 35% with simultaneous increase in reliability by 50 to 100%. Ecological parameters of the newer version, including noise and emission levels, meet stringent standards that ICAO and other international organizations are planning to impose in future. The PS-90A2 will enable airlines to operate Tu-204 aircraft under ETOPS, including 180-minute stretches of long-haul flights over sea surface. The PS-90A2 requires twice less man-hours in operation than the PS-90A.
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The Air Transport Association of America (ATA), the industry trade organization for the leading U.S. airlines, reported that passenger revenue, based on a sample group of carriers,[1] fell 19 percent in September 2009 versus the same month in 2008. This marks the 11th consecutive month in which passenger revenue has declined from the prior year, fueled primarily by the 10th consecutive month of ticket price declines. Just 2 percent fewer passengers traveled on U.S. airlines in September, in contrast to the 5 percent decline in August. The average price to fly one mile fell 18 percent, slightly more than the 17 percent year-over-year decline in August. Passenger revenue declines extended beyond the domestic United States to the trans-Atlantic, trans-Pacific and Latin markets. "The demand for air travel remains weak, as evidenced by the untenable pricing environment. While other sectors may be seeing signs that the economy is getting back on track, the airline industry has faced challenges in its effort to generate revenue," said ATA President and CEO James C. May.
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Featuring 4,275 flight departures per week, the Frankfurt Airport Winter Timetable 2009/10 will go into effect on Sunday, October 25 in tandem with the time change throughout Europe. Although there will be 2.0 percent fewer flights offered compared to last year's winter timetable, the number of available seats will remain almost unchanged at 655,000 per week - down only 0.3 percent year-on-year. The number of intercontinental and domestic flight offerings is particularly positive this winter season. There will be a 2.5 percent jump in intercontinental departures from Frankfurt (FRA) as well as a 4.9 percent rise in domestic connections compared to last year's winter schedule. In early November 2009 Continental Airlines will inaugurate a new daily nonstop service between Houston (IAH) and Frankfurt - giving FRA two flights per day to the Texas metropolis. Since September 2009 Oman Airlines has been flying four times per week nonstop to Muscat (MCT), the capital of the Sultanate of Oman on the Persian Gulf. The Frankfurt-Kabul (KBL) service inaugurated this past June by the new FRA entrant Safi Airways of Afghanistan will be continued for the winter season, too. On the African continent, services to Nigeria will expand significantly. Lufthansa will be providing two connections from FRA to Nigeria every day, one to the capital city of Abuja (ABV) and one to the metropolis of Lagos (LOS).
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Aerial Surveillance Systems announced the SkyEye 350 Hawker Beechcraft King Air 350-based aerial surveillance aircraft successfully completed its first flight on September 30th. "We successfully demonstrated the capability of our aerial surveillance aircraft and are very pleased with the SkyEye 350's performance," said Michael D. Long, director of international sales for Aerial Surveillance Systems. "Our team is now focusing on the next development phases and demonstrations, in order to provide this critical capability to our Warfighters as soon as possible." FLIR Systems' BRITE Star(r) II was selected to be the electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) targeting sensor for the SkyEye 350. The BRITE Star II is the latest generation of the combat-proven laser designation system. Its range performance, sensor combination, and program record make it the low-risk choice for reliable, long-range target designation. With a 100% duty cycle, diode-pumped laser rangefinder/designator and in-flight boresighting, the system is capable of being the eyes for any fixed-wing aircraft, helicopter or unmanned aerial vehicle. The BRITE Star II is currently fielded on the MQ-8B Fire Scout Vertical Takeoff and Landing Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and the UH-1Y utility helicopter.
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Drawing on 16 years' of trading pre-owned business and general aviation aircraft, JetBrokers of St Louis, Missouri, USA, one of the industry's leading aircraft brokers, announced at NBAA this week the launch of JetBrokers Europe.  Headquartered in the UK and Switzerland, its mission mirrors that of its US associate company – to ratify the best aircraft deal for the purchaser or seller they represent and in so doing add repeat business to their extensive client list. JetBrokers Europe is headed by John Merry, the company's Chairman and key investor, based in Switzerland and Tim Barber, Managing Director, based in the UK. They will offer a portfolio of pre-owned private jets, business turboprops and helicopters, so becoming one of a select few brokers with transatlantic coverage, affording clients marketing and sales potential on both sides of the pond. 
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Boeing reported a third-quarter net loss of $1.6 billion, or $2.23 per share, as revenues rose 9 percent to $16.7 billion. Current period results reflect the previously announced reclassification to research and development (R&D) of costs incurred through July for the first three 787 flight-test airplanes ($2.46 per share), spending on those planes for August and September ($0.14 per share), and the 747 charge ($0.99 per share), partially offset by solid performance in other commercial airplane programs and the company's defense business. Last year's strike and supplier production problems reduced year-ago revenue by an estimated $2.1 billion and earnings by an estimated $0.60 per share. Revenues for the first nine months of 2009 rose 4 percent to $50.3 billion due to higher commercial deliveries and growth in the defense segment. Earnings for the first nine months declined to $0.06 per share, including the third-quarter impacts described above and a first-quarter $0.38 per share impact from reductions to future twin-aisle production rates and lower delivery price escalation forecasts in Commercial Airplanes. Earnings guidance for 2009 has been adjusted to between $1.35 and $1.55 per share, from $4.70 to $5.00, to reflect the 787 and 747 impacts. "The 787 cost reclassification and the 747 charge for increased costs and difficult market conditions clearly overshadowed what continues to be otherwise solid performance across our commercial production programs and defense business," said Boeing Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Jim McNerney. "We look forward to getting the 787 and 747-8 in the air soon and moving forward with flight test and certification for these two important programs."
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The fleet of B-2 stealth bombers will all receive a new Northrop Grumman developed radar system following the U.S. Air Force's decision to authorize full-rate production of the units by the company's Radar Modernization Program (RMP). The decision, made Oct. 16 by the assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition (acting), allows Northrop Grumman to begin fabrication of the balance of radar units needed to outfit the entire fleet. Those units will be produced as the final installment of the $468 million RMP contract awarded to the company by the Air Force in Dec. 2008. Northrop Grumman is the Air Force's prime contractor for the B-2, the flagship of the nation's long range arsenal, and one of the most survivable aircraft in the world.
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Dassault Falcon recently delivered the 100th Falcon 900EX EASy aircraft into service. As of September 30, 2009, the 4,500 nm Falcon 900EX EASy fleet had performed over 80,000 takeoffs and landings and accrued 157,000 flight hours. Powered by three highly efficient Honeywell TFE731-60 engines, the Falcon 900EX EASy is the category leader in both airport performance and fuel efficiency. The 900EX EASy was certificated in December 2003 and features the award winning EASy flight deck. Today, there are 321 Falcon aircraft in operation with the EASy flight deck, “Efficiency has long been an important focus for us,” said John Rosanvallon, President and CEO of Dassault Falcon. “We believe the EASy flight deck offers the most efficient and safe way to manage cockpit resources. The Falcon aircraft operating with the EASy flight deck are a strong testament to the intrinsic advantages of our program.”
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Dassault Falcon announced the development of a new Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) for Falcon 2000 and 2000EX operators that have the original flight deck displays installed. The STC will allow operators to upgrade to a set of four flat panel LCD displays, adding functionality and increasing situational awareness. “This STC will benefit Falcon 2000 and non-EASy F2000EX operators by bringing a new suite of features that substantially increase situational awareness and safety, with comparatively little downtime,” said Geoff Chick, Director of Service Engineering. “In addition, it will help increase the resale value of the aircraft.”
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Forecast International's "The Market for Airborne and Space-Based Electro-Optical Systems" projects that an estimated $24.75 billion will be spent on 36 major airborne and space-based EO systems and programs over the next decade. Approximately 45 percent of this value represents product sales. "Electro-optical airborne devices such as infrared countermeasures (IRCM) systems protect both fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft and its crew,” said Theresa Hartley, Aerospace and Defense Analyst and author of this study. Hartley added, “EO systems are the 'eyes of the military' that protect troops and spy on adversaries, and are also vital to intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions that support ground troops.” According to Hartley, "The funding forecast in this analysis is consistent with the U.S. military's commitment to increase ISR support to the warfighter." ISR support in-theater improves mission effectiveness and reduces soldier and civilian fatalities. For example, fighter aircraft mounted with targeting pods monitor "areas of interest" and pass information to ground commanders.
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AgustaWestland announced that Polish helicopter manufacturer PZL-Œwidnik delivered the 1000th fuselage to AgustaWestland during an official ceremony held today in Œwidnik, marking 13 years of successful co-operation between the two companies. The helicopter model with the privilege of being the 1000 th fuselage was the AW109 LUH. AgustaWestland has one of its most important and long-lasting industrial collaborations in Poland. PZL-Œwidnik delivered the first AW109 Power airframe in 1996 and celebrated the delivery of the 500th airframe in June 2006. PZL-Œwidnik is currently producing airframes for the AW119Ke, AW109 Power, AW109 LUH, Grand and also the AW139 helicopter, of which it is a programme risk-sharing partner. The work given to PZL-Œwidnik by AgustaWestland in 2008 accounted for around 35% of PZL-Œwidnik total annual turnover.
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Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) is celebrating a major milestone with the delivery of its 70,000th engine. The engine, a PT6A-60A turboprop, was delivered recently to Hawker Beechcraft Corporation (HBC) for installation on a Beechcraft King Air 350 aircraft. P&WC engines are currently in service in 195 countries around the world, providing power to over 10,000 customers in a wide range of business, general, utility and regional aircraft and helicopter applications. "P&WC is a global leader and builds engines synonymous with dependability, reliability and value to meet our customers' needs," added Saabas. "Today, we offer the broadest product line in the industry and our in-service fleet has accumulated over 500 million flying hours."
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The U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory has continued funding for GE Aviation's development of a demonstrator engine core and selected critical component risk-reduction activities for the ADaptive Versatile ENgine Technology (ADVENT) program. . The program, which began in 2008, is developing a variable engine cycle, greater component efficiencies, and new materials technologies to provide future aircraft with far greater range and mission flexibility. For the past two years, GE has been engaged in Phase I of ADVENT, which involved preliminary and detailed design, analysis, and risk-deduction activities. This development work involved running a full annular combustor rig, component and rig tests using ceramic matrix composite materials, and testing of a full core engine (consisting of the compressor, combustor, high-pressure turbine), which featured GE's most advanced compression system.
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GE Aviation has delivered its 1000th GE90 engine to Boeing for its 777 program. The engine, a GE90-115B engine, was recently shipped from GE's outdoor test facility in Peebles, Ohio, to Boeing's Washington facility to be installed on a 777-300ER aircraft for Emirates Airlines. "It took 11 years to build 500 GE90 engines, and in a little more than three years, we doubled deliveries to 1000," said Tony Aiello, general manager of the GE90 Program at GE Aviation. "The feat demonstrates the industry's strong response to the Boeing 777 aircraft, which has revolutionized the way the aviation industry views big-twin engine aircraft."
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Bombardier Aerospace announced that it will open its first wholly owned European aircraft service center at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, Netherlands. This new addition to Bombardier's company-owned aircraft service center network, currently consisting of six facilities in North America, will enable the company to better support its growing fleet of over 550 Learjet, Challenger and Global aircraft in the region. The European aircraft service center is expected to begin operation in early 2010. "The Bombardier Aircraft Service Center network has been offering the highest quality of support to our customers in North America for over 28 years and today we are pleased to bring that experience and expertise to our customer base in Europe," said Michael McQuay, President, Bombardier Aircraft Service Centers. "The new aircraft service center, coupled with our LBAS joint venture facility in Germany and Frankfurt super-warehouse, strengthens our services in the region by providing greater access to Bombardier's high-quality maintenance support and certified Bombardier parts pre-cleared at customs."
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Alenia Aeronautica has delivered on 21 October 2009 to the Air Force of the Lithuanian Republic the last out of 3 C-27Js, as per the contract signed in June 2006, fully meeting time schedule. The first aircraft had been delivered to the Lithuanian Air Force in December 2006 and the second one in December 2008. The ceremony took place at Siauliai Military Airport (Lithuania) at the presence of the Defence Ministry - Miss Rasa Jukneviciene – Commander of the Armed Forces - Maj Gen Arvydas Pocius - and Commander of the Lithuanian Air Force - Brig Gen Arturas Leita, and of Alenia Aeronautica's top management. The Lithuanian Defence Ministry has expressed his full satisfaction for this successful programme for the Country's Armed Forces.
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NASA and Starfighters, Inc., of Tarpon Springs, Fla., are partnering to use the space shuttle runway at Kennedy Space Center to help support the development of the commercial space industry. Kennedy and the aerospace company have signed a cooperative space act agreement enabling Starfighters to become a tenant at Kennedy where it will launch a new business venture with a fleet of privately-operated Lockheed F-104 Starfighter aircraft. The new venture also is enabled by Space Florida, which has entered into separate agreements with Starfighters to use a state-built hangar at Kennedy's Shuttle Landing Facility, or SLF, and to provide other business assistance.
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Boeing and low-cost carrier Norwegian Air Shuttle confirmed an order for an additional six Next-Generation 737-800s. With this order, Norwegian has a total of 48 Next-Generation 737 airplanes on order from Boeing as well as 22 airplanes from leasing companies. The new 737s will feature advanced-technology Blended Winglets, an environmental innovation that reduces drag, resulting in less fuel consumption and a decrease in carbon emissions of 3.5 to 4 percent.
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South African aviation charter company Bionic Aviation CC/FLANA Pty Ltd has bought a BAe 146-300 regional jetliner from BAE Systems Regional Aircraft. The aircraft will be used for passenger charter work from South Africa to neighbouring countries. Delivery of the aircraft took place this week and it is now being ferried to the company's base at Lanseria International Airport, Johannesburg. Announcing this latest deal at the Airlines Association of Southern Airlines (AASA) Annual General Meeting in Kleinmond, Western Cape, South Africa, Mr Nigel Benson, Director Sales and Marketing for Sub-Saharan Africa for BAE Systems Regional Aircraft said:
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Boeing submitted two proposals to the Indian Air Force this week, offering the AH-64D Apache and the CH-47F Chinook for India's attack and heavy-lift helicopter competitions. "Boeing believes the Apache and Chinook helicopters are the most capable and cost-effective rotorcraft to meet India's defense and transport requirements," said Vivek Lall, vice president and India country head for Boeing Integrated Defense Systems. "The Apache will be a capable and lethal defender of India's troops and assets, while the Chinook will answer many of the country's military and humanitarian needs." India is seeking 22 attack helicopters and 15 transport helicopters and has not set a date to announce the winning proposals.
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The US Navy is one step closer to flying the “Green Hornet.” Members of the NAVAIR Fuels team recently made a small, but very vital step toward changing the source of jet fuel the U.S. Navy uses. The team tested an F404 F/A-18 engine to determine if it could run on a jet fuel (JP-5) derived from a weed. “This engine run was our first shot at certifying a JP-5 fuel derived from a renewable source,” said Tony Cifone, director for the Propulsion & Power Department at the Naval Air Systems Command. “This is the first step on the road to the 'Green Hornet'.” The “Green Hornet” encompasses more than just a new source for jet fuel. It will eventually include upgrades and new technology to create a more fuel efficient F/A-18 Super Hornet. More tests will occur in the December-January timeframe on the F414, the engine for the Super Hornet. This test could be conducted either at NAS Patuxent River or at the General Electric facility in Lynn, Mass.
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US Air Force officials have approved X-55A as the new designation for the Advanced Composite Cargo Aircraft. The X-55A is a technology demonstrator for the design and manufacturing of future aircraft using advanced composite materials. The X-55A is a modified Dornier 328J aircraft with the fuselage aft of the crew station and the vertical tail removed and replaced with completely new structural designs. These designs are made from composites using new out-of-autoclave curing techniques. The test platform contains some 600 accelerometers and stress gauges. The aircraft's first flight was June 2, 2009, at Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, Calif.
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Air Force Research Laboratory officials here completed its assessment of the two adaptive versatile engine technology Phase I efforts and found both companies worthy of proceeding to Phase II. ADVENT is a flagship effort under the Versatile, Affordable Advanced Turbine Engines Program, or VAATE. Managed by AFRL's Propulsion Directorate, VAATE is a national program aimed at advancing the state of the art in turbine engine technology. The Air Force's finding follows an intensive two-year effort of design, analysis and component risk reduction activities by General Electric located in Evendale, Ohio, and Rolls-Royce North American Technologies Incorporated, also known as LibertyWorks, located in Indianapolis. Based on available funding constraints, AFRL officials notified LibertyWorks to continue their technology demonstrator engine development and testing and notified General Electric to continue with their technology demonstrator core development and testing along with selected critical component risk reduction activities.
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The Spanish Defence Minister, Carme Chacón, the President of the Castilla la Mancha Autonomous Community, José María Barreda, and the Mayoress of Albacete, Carmen Oliver, headed the governmental representatives accompanying ITP Director General, Ignacio Matáix, at the official inauguration of the Industria de Turbinas de Helicópteros (ITH) installations at the Albacete Aeronautics Park. ITH, the new ITP maintenance centre in Albacete, encompasses all the Group's activities relating to the maintenance and assembly of helicopter engines. It has meant an initial investment of 15 million euros, including land acquisition, civil work and special teams for turbo-shaft maintenance. The centre, which actually started running in February of this year, has meant the creation of 35 solid jobs, a figure which is expected to reach 70 within the first three years. The jobs will be distributed between maintenance technicians, assembly workers and managers to oversee the work being carried out. The installations which have so far been constructed cover an area of 3,100 square metres inside a plot of 7,700 square metres.
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Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and Boeing signed an agreement to work together for the production of flaperons for the Boeing's 777 series commercial jetliner. HAL will make the delivery in phases and Boeing will get the first set of flaperons in the next couple of years as per the contract. The 777 flaperon is a highly complex composite assembly that is instrumental in controlling the airplane's maneuverability in flight. Referred to as a “control surface”, flaperons work both as an aileron to control roll and as a flap to control lift.
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Frasca International has received an order for two Cessna C172 FNPT IIs (Flight and Navigation Procedures Trainers) for Saint Petersburg State University of Civil Aviation (SPSUCA), Russia, facilitated through Jet Transfer SARL, the Cessna aircraft representative in Russia. The school has also ordered 12 Cessna 172S Skyhawk aircraft. The two STDs will be the first Frasca devices sold to and installed in Russia. They will feature Frasca's newest technology including TruVision™ Global visual system, Graphical Instructor Station (GISt), Electric Control Loading, Digital Sound and more. They will be outfitted with Jeppesen Navigational Database and Garmin G1000, GFC700 Autopilot, Garmin Audio panel, Garmin Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) and more to simulate the C172 aircraft. They will be qualified as FNPT II STDs (Simulated Training Devices).
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