To the casual observer, it looked like just another chunk of concrete apron on Airbus’s sprawling production complex at Blagnac Airport outside Toulouse. Nestled between giant hangars and the Airbus outdoor museum with its graffiti-covered airplanes, Airbus is spending approximately $184 million to build the production line for its new A350XWB airliner. The new facility is expected to be fully operational during the third quarter of 2010.
JetNet is highlighting its extensive helicopter database as well as its aviation business index at EBACE (Booth No. 251). As a source of information and intelligence on the worldwide business aircraft fleet and marketplace, the database includes some 60,000 airframes. The helicopter database covers some 30,000 airframes worldwide and encompasses 125 market-relevant turbine and piston rotary-wing models.
StandardAero and TAG Aircraft Interiors (Booth No. 651) announced at EBACE a joint venture for completions with interiors designed by the House of Versace. The latter will be responsible for content, design and style, while Standard Aero will manage logistics and technical aspects and act as marketing and sales agent. Actual completions will take place at StandardAero’s Springfield, Illinois facility.
Pentastar Aviation was recently issued FAR 145 Repair Station Airframe Class 3 and 4 ratings. The FAA ratings replace the company’s previous limited airframe ratings and authorize Pentastar’s FAR 145 repair station to maintain all models of small and large aircraft of all metal construction.
Aviation information provider JetNet (Booth No. 1428) has launched a helicopter market summary report and is showcasing the new product here at Heli-Expo’09. The report includes “extensive data” on the number of airframes for sale within the industry, high and low average prices, average airframe and engine time, and average days on the market.
U.S. aircraft maintenance specialist Duncan Aviation has come to the MEBA show having just forged a new partnership with Abu Dhabi-based Prestige Jet. The two companies are jointly exhibiting here in Dubai.
Semia, a French manufacturer of maintenance equipment, was at Helitech 2008 exhibiting the Syntham 5000, a new engine vibration-check device that can monitor several channels simultaneously.
Testing continues on the Boeing 787 despite the now three-week-long machinists’ strike estimated to cost the company $100 million a day. Yesterday, Boeing successfully completed a high-pressure test, known as “high blow,” on the Dreamliner test airframe at its Everett, Wash. factory.
The first production model of a new generation of Marine One U.S. Presidential helicopters made its initial flight earlier today at AgustaWestland’s plant in Yeovil, England. Designated by the U.S. Navy as VH-71, the helicopter is based on the three-engine AW101. The first block of five helicopters is scheduled to begin entering service next year. The Navy has been test flying four prototype block one aircraft over the past year.
Grand Junction, Colo.-based West Star Aviation has completed Supplemental Inspection Document (SID) inspections on 27 Cessna Conquest II twin turboprops, ensuring that the airframe is free of corrosion, cracks, debonding, abnormal wear and other anomalies.