The effects of the U.S. government budget cuts that started on March 1 will not likely be felt until April but they could be significant for airlines and their passengers. The Federal Aviation Administration, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency will absorb the mandated spending cuts known as the “sequester” in part by furloughing employees, or requiring them to take several days of unpaid leave.
The FAA is urging pilots to spend training time focusing on an updated Advisory Circular 70-2A, which deals with what the agency says is “a significant increase in the unauthorized laser illumination of aircraft.” The AC provides guidance to both aircrews and air traffic controllers about formal reporting of laser illumination incidents. Pointing a laser at an aircraft in the U.S.
Eurocopter released financial results for 2012 last month, logging another year of growth despite continuously eroding deliveries. Services, such as maintenance and training, are set to become Eurocopter’s number-one revenue producing activity, surpassing helicopter production. And during the next five years, the European manufacturer is betting on growth in emerging countries.
BellHelicopter Asia,Bell’s maintenance service facility in Singapore,has received Part 145 approval from the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS). This certification allows the company to repair, perform completions, maintain and customizeBellhelicopters that are based in Asia.
Freedom Aero Services (Booth No. C2029) is highlighting its range of equipment repair options and solutions at Heli-Expo ’13, even though those systems result in fewer maintenance opportunities down the road for the company.
“We’re up to 25 repair processes now,” Freedom’s Wayne Burk told AIN. “Sometimes we even put ourselves out of business in certain areas because we find better fixes for [our customers] so they don’t need to visit our shop as often. On the other hand, we have a satisfied customer that knows they won’t have problems.”
Turbomeca (Booth No. C3901) is ramping up production of its turboshaft engines this year. Simultaneously, the company’s maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) activity is growing, too. In new developments, Turbomeca is busy with helicopter engine upgrades to the Arriel family and the new TM800 that will power the Eurocopter X4 medium twin.
The Single European Sky ATM Research (Sesar) effort, Europe’s equivalent of NextGen in the U.S., is making progress as a research and development program “but it is not yet a successful modernization program,” according to the man directing its development phase.
When Irv Shoichet established Mississauga, Ontario-based Skycharter in 1968, the newly formed company offered FBO services, charter, pilot training, maintenance and aircraft sales.
Malaysian Airlines has signed a deal with Canada’s Viking Air to take six new 19-seat Twin Otter Series 400s for use in scheduled service by its regional subsidiary MASwings. Viking plans to deliver all the airplanes by the end of next year.
Though largely overshadowed by a heavy military presence, the business aviation sector made its voice heard at last month’s Aero India show in Bangalore (February 6 to 10). Serious obstacles continue to stand in the way of those trying to fulfill bizav’s undoubted potential in this vast emerging market (see box), but this has not deterred the major manufacturers from increasing their presence in India.