The U.S. Air Force awarded Northrop Grumman a $240 million contract modification to build three more RQ-4B Global Hawk Block 30 unmanned aircraft, each with integrated sensor suite and signals intelligence (Sigint) payloads, plus two Sigint payloads as retrofit kits. The new aircraft will join 18 Block 30 Global Hawks the service earlier planned to retire.
South African defense company Paramount reported on August 13 the first flight of its Advanced High-performance Reconnaissance Light Air Craft (AHRLAC). The twin-boom, tandem-seat, push-prop design, powered by a Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-66B turboprop, has been under development since September 2011.
Russia will fly the prototype next-generation strategic bomber in 2019 and develop a new interceptor by 2020 to replace the MiG-31 fleet. Addressing the media on Russian Air Force Day (August 12) the service’s commander, Gen. Victor Bondarev, also said a new combat aircraft with forward-swept wings is under development and could emerge soon as a prototype.
Following FAA approval being granted in July 2013, Wipaire Inc. received Brazilian approval this January for its Wipline 8750 floats for the Cessna 208B Grand Caravan and Grand Caravan EX. The company first received Brazilian validation for the floats on the Model 208 Cessna Caravan in September 2012.
LABACE has provided the first chance for customers to look inside the Embraer Legacy 500, which was granted ANAC approval this week. The aircraft on display is the fourth development aircraft, and was fitted with a full interior for certification purposes.
AgustaWestland is displaying two of its lighter helicopters here at the LABACE show in the form of a Power and a GrandNew, and will also unveil the cabin interior for its new AW169 helicopter. Interior configurations and entertainment options will be promoted for the 4.5-metric-ton light/intermediate machine.
Airbus Corporate Jets doesn’t do small business jets. The entry level into the ACJ world is the ACJ318, based on the 100-plus-seat A318 airliner. The top end of the range reaches right up to the ACJ380 based on the world’s largest commercial aircraft. And such aircraft do not come cheap, especially when outfitted to a luxurious standard.
Bombardier is making a strong appearance at the LABACE show with four of its aircraft in the static display at São Paulo’s Congonhas Airport, spanning the entire gamut of the private jet market.
Bell Helicopter and the team of Sikorsky Aircraft and Boeing will build rotorcraft demonstrators for the U.S. Army’s joint multi-role technology demonstration (JMR TD), which calls for flights to begin in 2017.
Dassault Falcon Jet is investing in a major expansion of its Sorocaba maintenance facility over the next few months “to better accommodate the demands of Brazilian and other South American customers.” The expansion of the Dassault Aircraft Services-Sorocaba facility will add 10,000 sq ft (929 sq m) of hangar space, significantly boosting the existing 23,000-sq-ft (2,137-sq-m) building and “reinforcing our ability to serve the anticipated demand,” said John Rosanvallon, president and CEO of Dassault Falcon Jet.