When engine maker Pratt & Whitney opened its first machine shop in a tobacco warehouse in Hartford, Conn., 80 years ago last month, former Wright Aeronautical president Frederick Rentschler probably could not have imagined how popular, and ubiquitous, the company’s engines would become.
In the wake of Hurricane Katrina the surge in auto-fuel prices–with the per-gallon increases lagging just hours behind the rising flood waters–was at the forefront of everybody’s mind. A flurry of activity on the political front–including the release of six million barrels of crude oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve–further focused the nation’s attention on the cost of keeping America’s engines running.
Turbomeca’s high-altitude Ardiden gas turbine has made its first run in southwestern France. The company configured the prototype as a pure jet engine but was installing a drive shaft with a view to further tests at press time. First flight is planned for July next year, with EASA certification due in December.
European regional airlines don’t need to be told that fuel prices could stunt their growth. But one industry official believes that operators must start to view high fuel costs in the broader context of all expenses, and resist the temptation to blame them for all losses. Speaking at the ERA gathering, Professor Judith Patterson reminded operators of commercial aviation’s fundamental dependence on petroleum, “unlike other transport modes.”
Republican lawmakers have taken steps to shelve new tax rules in the 2005 Highway Bill designed to discourage truckers from using jet fuel to avoid higher taxes on diesel fuel. Sens. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) and Conrad Burns (R-Mont.) and Rep. Robin Hayes (R-N.C.) sent letters to U.S.
Engine manufacturers are ready to benefit from the hot market for new business aircraft and helicopters in the coming decades. In addition to established manufacturers–General Electric, Honeywell, Pratt & Whitney Canada, Rolls-Royce, Turbomeca and Williams–several new OEMs will be introducing their own models to the market.
A world without oil is a breeding ground for alarmists, some say, blithely confident that it can’t run out and “we’ll find more,” but if it ever does run out “we’ll have found something else by then.”
Securaplane Technologies has received Parts Manufacturer Approval (PMA) on its XL249 emergency battery system forinstallation on the Gulfstream V.Securaplane developed the XL249 emergency battery for GV production and it is now the standard production battery on the Gulfstream G350, G450, G500 and the G550.
Airport information provider AirNav is launching AirBoss, a new fuel card membership service that is open to pilots and FBOs. For pilots, annual membership costs $39 (100 octane) or $79 (100-octane and jet-A) and provides discounted fuel at AirBoss FBOs. FBOs don’t pay a fee to join AirBoss but must advertise on AirNav’s online airport database.
According to BP, rapid growth in demand for all forms of energy dominated world energy markets last year, leading to rising prices. While growth in demand from China in particular was exceptional, BP said the strength of demand growth was a global phenomenon, increasing above the 10-year trend in every region of the world.