Investigations into two accidents involving Eurocopter AS 350A and AS 350B2 helicopters led the NTSB to determine that the hydraulic pump drive belt (P/N 704A33690004) prematurely failed in flight. Additionally, an inquiry into the FAA’s Service Difficulty Report database found that 43 failures and/or replacements of hydraulic pump drive belts with that part number occurred from February 1995 to the present.
AINalerts » January 19, 2006
Southampton, England-based Club328 has launched a block-charter program called SkyClub. The entry-level package is 10 hours in a Raytheon Premier I for £30,000 ($52,500). Last month, Club328 bought four pre-owned Premier Is from Raytheon Aircraft. SkyClub customers will also be able to buy blocks of hours in its other aircraft: a Dornier 328Jet and a Dornier 328 turboprop twin, as well as a Hawker 700 and a Hawker 800.
Two recent accidents in icing conditions involving Cessna Caravans have prompted the NTSB to issue more recommendations for the high-wing turboprop single.
French engine manufacturer Snecma has revealed plans to develop a turbofan engine to power business and regional jets. It has started developing a core engine demonstrator called the SM-X that, if a full development program is launched, would yield a powerplant producing between 8,500 and 10,000 pounds of thrust. Ground testing of the core is set for the second half of next year.
With White House budget cuts restored by Congress, NASA is returning to its roots by restructuring its aeronautics research mission directorate to emphasize cutting-edge fundamental research, as well as protecting its far-flung test facilities as national assets.