Bombardier delivered the first Global 5000 equipped with the Global Vision flight deck on March 25 during a delivery ceremony at its Montreal, Canada headquarters. Global Vision, which is based on a Rockwell Collins Pro Line Fusion avionics suite, features three large LCD cockpit displays as well as an LCD-based head-up display.
Aviation International News » April 2012
The release of an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) memo on March 9 outlining guidance on how to apply the federal excise tax (FET) to fees paid to aircraft management companies adds to business aviation’s burden at a time when the industry continues to suffer from weak demand, high fuel prices and public criticism of this form of travel. This memo isn’t the first time the IRS has attempted to apply the 7.5-percent FET to non-commercial Part 91 flight operations.
On March 14 the Senate passed the $52.9 billion federal highway bill (S.1803), which contains significant amendments regarding helicopter tour operations over national parks. Of particular concern is a successful amendment to the bill offered by Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) that would give the director of the National Park Service (NPS) broad authority to regulate helicopter and fixed-wing tour flights over land under its administration as well as tribal lands, a move that the air-tour business nationwide regards as debilitating.
Two aviation association executives have been appointed chairman and vice chairman of the Transportation Security Administration’s Aviation Security Advisory Committee (Asac).
“You want to do full-motion?” asks American Eurocopter simulator instructor Eric King. “We have this bag right here.” King points to a jumbo sick sack between the two pilot positions in the $6 million Eurocopter AS350B2 and AS350B3 Level B simulator at the company’s Grand Prairie, Texas campus. For a fleeting moment, I focus on the pair of sliders I had for lunch at the nearby Krystal. That was probably not the best choice. However, today motion sickness will be the least of my problems.
Recognizing that its plan to cover the nation with powerful Internet transmitters has failed, LightSquared has hired legal counsel, ostensibly to prepare for the possibility of suing those it now sees as the architects of its downfall. Its first target is expected to be the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
With funding now assured under the FY 2012 Reauthorization and Reform Act, the FAA’s four-year UAV project is getting under way. But the overarching goal of achieving access to the NAS is going to require a good deal of effort, particularly on the regulatory side. It looks fairly straightforward, but in fact it can get complex and there’s a distinct possibility that some participants won’t make it by the Sept. 30, 2015 deadline.
The FAA is looking for a few good sites to test unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), signaling that momentum is building toward merging manned and unmanned aircraft in unrestricted airspace.
While Europe’s economies continue to struggle, and in some cases flirt with disaster, there might be a case for playing down expectations over prospects for the annual European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (Ebace). But the highly successful show has defied general economic pessimism in the years since the financial crisis took hold in the Old World in 2008, and the 2012 event (May 14 to 16) looks as if it could be no exception when it opens again in Geneva, one of Europe’s most prosperous cities.
Even as Hawker Beechcraft announced in March that Brazil has become the Wichita OEM’s leading market for its civil aircraft line, the company was continuing to do battle with rival Sierra Nevada and its Brazilian partner Embraer over a light air support (LAS) contract potentially valued at close to $1 billion. Now, a new chapter in the competition has opened.