Look for Arinc’s SkyLink high-speed-data satcom service to start showing up in a wider range of airplane types now that an exclusive agreement with Gulfstream is expiring. The company is said to be close to finalizing deals in the works with a number of OEMs and independent service centers, with the first three announced last month.
Aviation International News » April 2006
Garmin has introduced the GMX 200 multifunction display, a higher-resolution (480 by 640 pixels) version of the MX20 display originally developed by UPS Aviation Technologies (which Garmin bought in mid-2003 and renamed Garmin AT).
Max-Viz, the Portland, Ore. maker of enhanced-vision systems (EVS) for business aircraft, announced that a Gulfstream III operator has become the launch customer for its EVS-1000 system in that model. West Star Aviation in Grand Junction, Colo., is performing the installation as part of an amendment to the current STC covering the GIV and GV.
Universal Avionics last month said it flew its first test flight with the new “W” series flight-management system (FMS) designed for compatibility with the wide-area augmentation system (WAAS).
The FAA’s announcement last month that its GPS wide area augmentation system (WAAS) will support ILS-like 200-foot Category I approaches marks the agency’s third swing at this, the system’s Holy Grail. When WAAS was launched in 1995, Category I was promised by 1997, but the system’s rocky progress over the following years consigned Category I to the benches.
The worst-kept secret in Chicago: Mayor Richard Daley is considering privatizing Midway International Airport. Dana Levenson, the city’s CFO, has stated officially that the idea has been discussed but is not under serious consideration. According to Levenson, the idea has surfaced as a way for the city to raise money without increasing taxes. “It’s really just thinking outside the box,” Levenson said.
Elliott Aviation has introduced an interior upgrade kit that it says can morph that aging King Air 200 cabin into the equivalent of that of a new [but larger] King Air 350.
Elliott launched the program early last year, and, according to interiors manager Jude Zimmerman, “We’ve already done three King Air 200s and one older King Air 300.” Two more King Air 200s are due in for an inner facelift this spring.
Last month Raytheon Aircraft received FAA certification for the Hawker 850XP, essentially a Hawker 800XP with homegrown winglets. Raytheon said the outwardly canted winglets, which are constructed of lightweight composite material, enhance aerodynamic performance, boosting range by up to 100 nm and reducing time-to-climb, as well as allowing higher airspeeds and block speeds.
According to Cessna Citation Encore+ program manager Lynn Young, the program is on track to reach FAA certification in the third quarter. An Encore+ prototype that has been fitted with one of the FADEC-equipped Pratt & Whitney Canada PW535B turbofans has been flying since February, logging 40 hours over 20 flights at press time.
The Grob SPn Utility Jet’s flight-test program has been progressing well since the twinjet made its first flight last July 20, according to a company spokesman. As of early last month, German-based Grob had already verified the twinjet’s flight characteristics throughout the full c.g. envelope.