BAE Systems is out and a number of new suppliers are in, according to Eclipse Aviation officials, who announced the signing of long-term contracts with six additional vendors for the avionics and digital automatic flight controls on the Eclipse 500 after reshuffling the original supplier team.
Aviation International News » March 2004
At least 250 pilots are estimated to be hired this year by the Big Four fractional providers, according to Aviation Information Resources (AIR). This is about 50 more than were hired last year. If the estimate turns out to be accurate, it will reverse a slide that frax hiring has been on since the Atlanta-based firm began tracking the employment situation at such operators four years ago.
The pilot and his teenage son were killed January 31 when their King Air C90, N75GC, crashed into Everglades National Park about 10 minutes after departing from Marathon, Fla., on an IFR flight plan to Fort Lauderdale, Fla. About three minutes before the accident, the pilot radioed ATC that he was 32 miles southwest of Tamiami.
The National Air Traffic Controllers Association filed a lawsuit in late January asking a federal court to order the Federal Service Impasses Panel to resolve a bargaining issue between NATCA and the FAA that affects employees at 11 facilities. NATCA also named the Federal Labor Relations Authority in its suit.
After selling 101 regional and corporate jets last year (44 short of its initial projection and later revised downward), Embraer forecasts an upturn in sales over the next two years. The Brazilian airframer predicts it will sell 160 aircraft this year and 170 next year. These projections could suffer if Embraer receives cancellations or postponements by customers for the Embraer 170.
NBAA said that of the 29 people who took the 175-question test, 22 passed the first Certified Aviation Manager (CAM) examination administered last October. The CAM program, developed last year, “offers a way to identify and measure the aviation-specific knowledge and management skills of current and aspiring flight department managers,” NBAA said. A second CAM exam was administered on February 26.
Recent guidance from the FAA advises pilots that beginning next January 20, when RVSM is scheduled to be implemented in the U.S., ATC will start using the flight-plan equipment block information to issue or deny clearance into RVSM airspace. For both FAA and ICAO flight plans, the letter “W” will signify that an operator has RVSM authorization. Questions about all aspects of RVSM can be directed to the FAA at (202) 863-2175.
Nearly three months after being directed by Congress to develop a plan for giving pilots and mechanics a “third party” review process if they lose their FAA certificates for alleged security reasons, the Transportation Security Administration has yet to propose such a plan. To date, there have been no FAA certificates pulled under the regulation, according to AOPA.
March 15 is the deadline for comments on the FAA’s proposal to establish regulations governing commercial flights by multi-engine airplanes that go beyond certain distances from an adequate airport (extended operations, or ETOPS). To date, the vast majority of the more than 75 comments received support the proposed ETOPS thresholds of 180 minutes for Part 135 operations and 207 minutes for Part 121 carriers.
Williams International of Walled Lake, Mich., expects to receive FAA certification soon for two of its new turbofan engines. U.S. approval is anticipated this quarter for the FJ33, a 1,200-pound-thrust engine that has been selected to power several very light jets still under development, including the Adam A700, Safire Jet, Diamond D-Jet and Aerostar FJ-100.