The Schweizer 434 made its first flight on December 18 at Horseheads, N.Y., and deliveries to overseas military customers are scheduled to begin next month. A company spokeswoman declined to speculate on when the new light turbine single would gain U.S. certification. Schweizer announced this more powerful and updated $933,000 version of the 333 last year, as well as initial orders for 15 copies.
AINalerts » January 8, 2009
France-based business jet manufacturer Dassault yesterday confirmed to AIN that the Falcon 2000LX, a winglet-equipped 2000EX, is slated for certification by March, following several delays. Certification flights, with FAA and EASA pilots, are to begin “in the coming days” in Tucson, Ariz., on a development aircraft. The latest issue was with leading-edge slats.
Because it has not completed guidelines for a Safety Management System (SMS) for U.S. operators, the FAA on Tuesday filed a “difference” with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) over the Jan. 1, 2009, deadline for having SMS requirements. Compliance with the ICAO standard depends on FAA action to define specific requirements, but the agency has not yet developed regulations or policy for implementation of SMS by operators.
Current acting FAA Administrator Bobby Sturgell announced on Tuesday that Lynne Osmus will become acting FAA Administrator when he departs the agency on Friday next week. The announcement came one day after Osmus was named acting Deputy Administrator by the outgoing Bush Administration. She is currently the FAA Assistant Administrator for Security and Hazardous Materials, a position she has held since July 2003.
Two separate analyst reports issued this week by UBS Investment Research and Brian Foley and Associates note that business jet order backlogs are at increased risk due to rising pre-owned inventory and recession. According to UBS, pre-owned bizjet inventory now stands at 16 percent of the in-service fleet, climbing 2 percent last month alone and 65 percent above prior-year levels.
The healthy backlogs that Cessna and Hawker Beechcraft thought they had six months ago apparently haven’t been able to weather the worldwide recession, with both manufacturers separately announcing more layoffs this week. Wichita TV station KAKE is reporting that up to 3,000 employees at the two aircraft makers soon could be on the street.