As the helicopter industry once again prepares to hold its annual roundup in Dallas later this month, it is riding the crest of a wave that includes the highest U.S. rotary-wing production figures in more than a decade.
Annual special reports and features from AIN Publications, including the reports from the annual FBO and Product Support Surveys. Other topics include Completions and Refurbishment, Cabin Electronics, New Business Jets, New Regional Jets, New Rotorcraft, pilot reports of aircraft and others, as well as one-of-a-kind special reports on numerous other aviation topics.
Edward Taylor, a 16th-century New England Puritan not given to excess, nevertheless saw fit to describe the spiritual in terms of the flesh when he wrote of the sacraments, “It’s food too fine for angels.”
This month’s Asian Aerospace 2006 show, which runs from February 21 to 26, promises to be the largest staging of the biennial event since it started in 1982. Exhibition space at Singapore Changi International Airport has been increased by 20 percent to meet rising demand for the show, which is expected to draw more than the 27,000 trade visitors and 48,000 public visitors who went to the 2004 show.
For a long time–too long some say–the industry has been struggling to give passengers on corporate aircraft the same business and entertainment tools at 41,000 feet that they enjoy at home or in their offices. And the truth is it’s going to take a little longer.
Over the last 10 years business aviation safety has improved immensely. During the same period, the entire aviation industry has been subject to a number of equipment, avionics and procedural requirements designed to reduce accidents.
According to Qwilton Biel, chairman of the helicopter division of the New Zealand Aviation Industry Association, “If you walk into our industry forum and talk about fractionals, the attendees will think you’re talking about math. It’s just not a concept that’s caught on in New Zealand. You can drive the whole country north to south in one day.”
The dawn of the very light jet (VLJ) is nearly upon us, with the first, the Eclipse 500, set to receive FAA certification in June. Hot on the heels of the Eclipse VLJ is Cessna’s Citation Mustang and 10 other potential competitors.
“This is our first show since the SAE [Society of Automotive Engineers] alliance and I think it’s going well. It’s good exposure for both SAE and PAMA; I expect to see our alliance continue to grow,” Dave Orcutt, PAMA chairman and v-p of customer support for Bombardier Business Aircraft, told AIN. “We’ve seen a lot activity on the floor, and the PAMA Olympics is going really well.”
Judging from the size of the audience–about 200 people–many charter operators sent personnel to the NATA show to attend the first FAA operational control briefing session. A number of participants were local FAA inspectors, a sign that the FAA is trying to make sure all parties are on the same page when it comes to understanding the operational control concept.
If Air Transport Association (ATA) CEO James May has his way, business aviation will start paying more of what he believes is a fair share of the costs of operating the nation’s ATC system. During his presentation at the NATA strategic issues forum on the last day of the AIE show, May outlined his views, couched in an empathetic appreciation of the accomplishments of aviation pioneer Charles Lindbergh.