Gulfstream Aerospace earned long-awaited full certifications of its super-midsize G280 and wide-cabin, ultra-long-range G650 last month. The G280 obtained full approval from two aviation authorities–the U.S. FAA and Israeli CAAI–on September 3, and the G650 received full FAA certification four days later.
The FAA announced September 7 that it would launch an investigation into the Lee County, Fla. MedStar helicopter EMS program. MedStar is operated by the county’s Division of Public Safety and flies a Bell 430 and an MBB BO105. Lee County abruptly shuttered MedStar, at the time it said temporarily, August 21 and terminated its pilots and top managers following reports of operational deficiencies and billing irregularities; however, the program had been under strain since the Aug.
A new FAA advisory circular has warned of the dangers posed by foreign object damage (FOD). Debris removed from airport ramps, taxiways or runways can wreak havoc on turbine engines and FOD costs the airline industry $12 million annually according to the FAA. The crash of an Air France Concorde in 2000 near Le Bourget Airport (LFPB) in Paris, the result of a small piece of metal the aircraft hit during its takeoff roll, underscored the dangers of FOD.
Eclipse Aerospace announced last week that an anti-skid braking system will become an available option on new production Eclipse 550 jets as a retrofit item to all existing aircraft. The new anti-skid system adds 17 pounds to the aircraft’s empty weight; the company says it will offer a weight-reduction package to help offset the new feature.
Joined by top U.S. transportation officials, Boeing and American Airlines showcased the 737-800 “ecoDemonstrator” flying testbed at Washington Reagan National Airport on September 18. Boeing had flown the aircraft from its flight-test facility at Glasgow, Montana, the preceding day using a biofuel blend made partially from used cooking oil.
Eurocopter hopes to establish a completion center for Ecureuil light helicopters in Tianjin, China, by next year to accelerate deliveries for Chinese customers.
The Eurocopter EC225 medium twin now has a traffic collision avoidance system (Tcas) II integrated into its autopilot, eliminating the need for pilot input in emergency avoidance maneuvers. The first such standard-equipped EC225 was delivered earlier this year. Offshore operator Bristow previously STC’d a Tcas II installation on the AS332 Super Puma; Eurocopter claims to go one step further, with more integration.
Having achieved some success in lifting import taxes for some foreign-made business aircraft, the Russian United Business Aviation Association (RUBAA) has said it will not lobby to eliminate duties for aircraft weighing more than 20 metric tons (44,000 pounds) operating empty weight (OEW). The decision, which is likely to frustrate Western aircraft manufacturers, was this week during Jet Expo 2012 in Moscow.
Embraer brought a newly completed example of its Lineage 1000 bizliner to Moscow’s Jet Expo show in a bid to build on the success it has already had in Russia with the super-midsize Legacy 600/650. Ernest Edwards, president of the Brazilian manufacturer’s Executive Jets division, declined to say whether the company has yet achieved any Lineage sales in Russia, but he insisted that the airplane is set to do well in a market that has favored larger aircraft. “There is no other aircraft in this segment that can carry 19 passengers and sells for $54 million,” he told AIN.
AgustaWestland and Northrop Grumman have teamed to offer the three-engine AW101 for the U.S. Air Force Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH) requirement, the successor program of the cancelled CSAR-X. The companies will offer the same type for the Navy’s VXX program to replace the U.S. presidential helicopter. That acquisition was originally awarded to AgustaWestland teamed with Lockheed Martin for the VH-71 Kestrel version of the AW101 but later cancelled.