The business aviation industry is on a constant quest to create a more comfortable cabin environment for the traveler, but only in the past several years have aircraft manufacturers tackled the nagging issue of cabin altitude and its physiological effects, and with some success.
Cabin Interior and Electronics
News and developments about everything that goes into the cabin of an aircraft, from floor coverings to headliners, with a special emphasis on in-flight entertainment, communications and other electronics for passengers. If it is in the cabin of an aircraft, it’s covered here.
As part of a major consolidation project that it says will save $25 million a year, Bombardier has embarked on an 18-month project to consolidate all Learjet production, completions and deliveries in Wichita, and all such Challenger work in Montreal.
Start-up completion and refurbishment center Air Corporate Services will officially open its doors for business next spring and is already soliciting work. According to business manager Tina Dotson, the company has begun construction of a 114,000-sq-ft facility at Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport (Lovell Field).
Jet Aviation Zurich has expanded its capabilities to include major interior refurbishment. One of the first beneficiaries of the expansion was the Citation VII, below, refurbished for fractional-ownership provider NetJets.
European information technology giant SITA predicts that by 2005 airline passengers will be able to make calls in flight using their personal cellphones.
Completions of corporate and VIP aircraft were worth $111 million in sales to Lufthansa Technik last year, an increase of 20 percent over the 2001 figure. “A big VIP aircraft completion represents between 100,000 and 200,000 working hours,” noted executive board chairman August Wilhelm Hennigsen. “Currently our capacity is fully utilized through most of the third quarter.” But the market is fierce.
Canada’s International Water-Guard Industries has received JAA approval as a JAR 145-accepted facility for maintenance of IWG aircraft components. The Burnaby, British Columbia-based company has already received similar recognition from Transport Canada and the FAA. IWG’s water-treatment systems for business jets include advanced filtration, ultraviolet disinfection, reverse osmosis and deionization.
• Elliott Aviation held a grand opening last month celebrating its new $6 million completion center at Quad City Airport in Moline, Ill. The 48,000-sq-ft facility offers paint, interiors, cabinetry, cabin amenities and avionics modifications for turboprops through midsize jets.
Dassault Falcon Jet broke ground on May 27 for a larger and technically enhanced paint shop at its completion center in Little Rock, Ark., Dassault Aviation’s largest facility outside France. The $8 million, 46,000-sq-ft facility will be used primarily for the new 5,700-nm Falcon 7X.
Acoustic and thermal insulation manufacturer Flight Environments believes it has solved the problem of trying to demonstrate exactly what its products do in terms of quieting corporate aircraft interiors–short of chartering two jets, one with the company’s treatment and one without. The Columbia, S.C.