A global team of research organizations is quietly working on an active rotor blade in which distributed piezo-electric actuators can change blade twist almost continuously over the course of one blade revolution. Partners can be found in the U.S., Europe and Asia. A full test campaign is scheduled for next year.
Aviation International News » August 2012
Garmin has updated the software for GTN touchscreen avionics, and new capabilities include the ability to display weather radar, new ADS-B features, worldwide connectivity with the GRS 56 Iridium datalink system, cross fill between the GTN and GNS 430W/530W, geo-referenced FliteCharts and support for Telligence voice command and 3-D audio. The new software is available free for owners of GTN systems starting in the fourth quarter, although dealers may charge for installation.
Unseasonably bad weather at the 2012 Farnborough International airshow required exhibitors and visitors alike to dig deep into the reserves of resilience and flexibility that they have had to draw on in business conditions that remain uncomfortably unpredictable. But despite the near-relentless British rain, the event delivered no small amount of encouragement for the aerospace sector (primarily on the commercial side of the fence) and plenty of points of interest for industry watchers.
Summer is typically a time the pre-owned market experiences a seasonal bump in inventory, as buyers are out using their jets to get to their favorite summer destinations and aren’t necessarily thinking of buying. This year, however, has been somewhat uncharacteristic and today’s supply of used jets is just about where it was when the year began. The lack of any wild gyrations could be a welcome sign of stability.
Associated Air Center (AAC) has taken the art of cabin completion and refurbishment to a new level with the June 28 opening of a 4,000-sq-ft design center at its Dallas Love Field site.
“The bulk of all interiors we provide to our customers are conceived, detailed and built by our own internal design department,” said v-p and general manager Chris Schechter. “This new design center will showcase the best of what we do at AAC: creative and innovative design, talented craftsmen and an overall commitment to quality.”
There are plenty of discount fuel and services programs available to business jet operators, but Melodi Gerber, part-owner of Arizona charter operator Jet Team, didn’t like the services offered by contract fuelers. “I thought that working with contract fuelers was difficult,” she said. And most are focused on Part 91 operators, not charter providers, she added.
TAG Aviation is tapping its own experience of having to comply with the European Union’s emissions trading scheme (ETS) to provide support to other business aircraft operators in dealing with what remains a burdensome process. Through the new TAG ETS Solutions service, the Switzerland-based business aviation services group can provide a full turnkey package covering all requirements for monitoring, reporting and verifying carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, as well as actually purchasing carbon credits, which operators will have to do beginning in April next year.
The concept isn’t new. In fact, one could call it a logical extension of development work that originated with Saab in Sweden in the mid-2000s, which showed the economic potential of datalinking various sensors at an unmanned airport to controllers at a distant air traffic monitoring and control center. Such a center could handle a number of small airports that had relatively few arrivals and departures but that still needed personnel to maintain a monitoring watch.
The Sixth Annual Cannes Airshow, held in early June, drew nearly 8,500 visitors and provided a venue for a number of pleasant surprises.
Chinese domestic production of civil helicopters is set to grow, but not as quickly as the country’s authorities predict, according to a local market analyst. Matthieu Devoisselle, co-founder of Avia-Tek, a Shanghai-based aerospace consultancy firm specializing in emerging countries, regards government forecasts as unrealistic. But Chinese manufacturer Avicopter does have reason to be optimistic, he adds.