The new Eclipse 500 very light jet isn’t physically here in Singapore but its U.S. manufacturer is convinced that it has a bright future in the Asia/Pacific region. “If the show had been even two or three months later we would have brought an Eclipse 500 for the static display but the big issue right now is time available for flight testing.
Business Aviation » Business Aviation Aircraft
News and issues relating to business, aircraft, primarily turbine-engine powered airplanes and helicopters.
Execujet and Pilatus (Stand C104) have terminated their PC-12 relationship, the two companies announced last week. Execujet used to represent Pilatus’ single-turboprop business aircraft in Africa, the Middle East and Scandinavia–both for sales and support. A transition plan will be set up to ensure support continuity.
Ruag Aerospace Services (Stand A221-04) is about to convert a Gulfstream 550 into an atmospheric research aircraft. The German DLR Aerospace Center will use it for its high-altitude, long-range program, dubbed Halo. U.S. manufacturer Gulfstream subcontracted the modification work to Ruag, and is to deliver the aircraft to it on April 24.
After operating below the radar for several years, Maverick Jets, now headquartered in Jackson, Wyo., revealed it is working on a next-generation Maverick Leader called the SmartJet. The five-seat, twin-turbofan, all-composite SmartJet has a planned mtow of 4,160 pounds, an empty weight of 2,150 pounds, a normal cruise speed of 277 knots at 22,000 feet and a max range of 1,250 nm.
Dassault Aviation had mixed fortunes in 2005 with a slight fall in revenue and net result, balanced by a record 123 firm orders for Falcon jets, up from 69 the previous year and 40 in 2003. At a press conference in Paris on Thursday, chairman and CEO Charles Edelstenne said he does not expect the same level of sales to be maintained this year.
Dassault recently delivered the first Falcon business jet to be registered in China. The Falcon 2000 is being operated by Citic, said to be China’s largest state-owned financial services holding company. Citic expects to take delivery of a Falcon 900DX late next year.
EADS Socata (Stand A701) is here at Asian Aerospace to persuade anyone who is thinking about a step into the very light jet age to consider instead its new TBM 850 high-performance turboprop single. The $2.8 million aircraft completed U.S. certification last month, just six weeks after the European manufacturer sought approval for the more powerful, faster derivative of the TBM 700.
Eclipse Aviation expected to have delivered its first Eclipse 500 very light jet by the time this issue was printed, according to Eclipse president and CEO Vern Raburn. The Model 500 received full FAA type certification on September 30, although flight-into-known-icing approval remains pending and some avionics functionality will not be available until next year.
NASA’s Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) recently marked its 30th anniversary. Established in 1975 under a memorandum of understanding with the FAA, the program has received more than 474,000 reports from flight crews, air traffic controllers, mechanics and others. According to ASRS officials, no reporter’s identity has been breached and no reporter has been prosecuted solely on the basis of the information reported.
Dole Food and its affiliate Castle & Cook have purchased three Eclipse 500 very light jets (VLJs) that will join a current corporate aircraft fleet. Dole’s flight department is based in Van Nuys, Calif., and includes a Global Express. “The decision to purchase these jets was made based on safety, performance and economics,” said Dole Food owner David Murdock.