Activity in the light sport aircraft (LSA) arena is heating up, with more pilots trying the many modern aircraft spawned by this new category which was enacted by the FAA in 2004. While LSAs include a variety of aircraft types such as fixed-wing airplanes, powered parachutes, weight-shift-control aircraft, balloons, gliders, airships and gyroplanes, much of the LSA development has focused on the basic two-seat light sport airplane.
Maybe for general aviation to survive, we need more disruption. An article published in Wired magazine (Clayton Christensen Wants to Transform Capitalism, by Jeff Howe) discussed how successful companies often fail to recognize that new companies with “disruptive innovations” are about to take over their marketplace.
Cessna remains optimistic about Europe. “In spite of all the negative news you get in the press about economic activity in Europe, our order inquiry activity from [that region] has remained very positive,” said Brad Thress, Cessna senior vice president for business jets.
At Abace today, Cessna Aircraft senior vice president for business jets Brad Thress elaborated further on the aircraft manufacturer’s joint venture with Aviation Industry Corp. of China (Avic) and the Chengdu provincial government to build midsize Citations in China. He said that the Sovereigns and Latitudes built in China will be assembled in Chengdu from components made at the company’s headquarters in Wichita. “We see this as incremental business.
Cessna Aircraft and the Aviation Industry Corp of China (Avic) signed “two strategic agreements to jointly develop general and business aviation in the People’s Republic of China” today. In an announcement broad on concept and thin on detail, Cessna said, “The agreements together pave the way for a range of business jets, utility single-engine turboprops and single-engine piston aircraft to be manufactured and certified in China.”
Mark Twain is said to have remarked, “Everybody talks about the weather but nobody does anything about it,” but Fargo Jet Center (FJC) and Weather Modification, Inc. (WMI) qualify as exceptions. The two, joined at the hip on Hector International Airport, Fargo, N.D., are actually doing a lot about the weather.
At 11:29 this morning, the final space shuttle flight got under way as Atlantis rose from the launch pad on a column of fire from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The threat of thunderstorms had remained at bay, and, some 2.5 minutes later than planned, STS-135 headed skyward to punch through an overcast on its way to spending 12 days in the void above.
In what would turn out to be one of his last appearances as boss of Cessna Aircraft, Jack Pelton gave a roomful of aviation policy leaders a Paul Revere-like warning last month: the Chinese are coming, the Chinese are coming. Textron Inc, Cessna’s parent company, announced on May 2 Pelton’s retirement from Cessna, which becomes effective on June 1.
Cessna Aircraft appointed Genesis Aviation of Shanghai an authorized sales representative in China for the Citation. Genesis joins long-time Cessna representative Aviation Supplies in marketing Citations in the People’s Republic of China.
There are varying perspectives on whether general aviation (GA) is declining or poised for a renaissance generated by new interest in light sport aircraft (LSA) and avionics technology. When attending the annual EAA AirVenture extravaganza in Oshkosh, Wis., for example, it is always interesting to see the contrast between those who complain about the cost of flying and those who embrace every new development.
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