Bell Helicopter received Transport Canada approval today for a 500-pound increase for its Model 429, bringing the medium twin’s maximum takeoff weight to 7,500 pounds. The raised limit is an exemption to the Part 27 certification limit of 7,000 pounds and will enable the 429 to carry additional fuel reserves, increasing both range and loiter times, and enhance its IFR utility, the company said. According to Bell vice president Larry Roberts, this enhancement is especially useful for EMS and law-enforcement customers.
Maximum Takeoff Weight
As the Eurocopter EC145 T2 light twin helicopter has completed “hot and high” testing, the manufacturer has released “promising” performance estimates.
Germany’s Ruag Aviation received EASA certification for the Do-228NG on August 18, two-and-a-half years after the company launched the program to bring the Do-228 back into production. The Oberfaffenhofen factory built more than 200 Dornier Do-228s before production ended in 2002. Ruag holds the original type certificate for the airplane and continued to provide aftermarket support for the 150 aircraft still operating.
This AIN pilot/reporter had an opportunity to fly the Eclipse on two different occasions, once on a short cross-country trip in March between Chicago and Nashville and again to Rockford, Ill., for some approaches, landings
and airwork. My instructor pilot was North American Jet Eclipse instructor Mike Vautell.
Cessna Citation 500, London, UK, March 8, 2008–A missing rivet head
Aircraft performance is a subject that many pilots dread, during both preflight planning and post-lunch ground school sessions in stuffy classrooms when the lines on flight manual charts blend together as eyelids droop and weary brains reject the stimulus of yet more caffeine.
A final report from the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) said a missing rivet head on a fuel shutoff valve that likely led to inadvertent engine shutdown was one of four “contributory factors” that resulted in the crash of a Cessna Citation 500 on March 8 some two miles northeast of London Biggin Hill Airport.
Flight planning Web site FltPlan.com is now offering runway analysis services by Aircraft Performance Group (APG) integrated with flight planning. Runway analysis may allow departures at heavier maximum takeoff weights, according to FltPlan.com, thanks to APG’s Airport Analyzer.
Sandpoint, Idaho-based Quest Aircraft received FAA approval to increase the mtow for its Kodiak turboprop single to 7,225 pounds, up from the existing 6,750 pounds. With the increase, the Kodiak’s useful load rises to 3,535 pounds. The Kodiak obtained FAA certification in 2007.
Kunovice, Czech Republic-based Evektor last week rolled out its EV-55 Outback, a nine- to 14-seat, high-wing twin turboprop. First flight of the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-21-powered utility airplane is planned for the third quarter, two years behind the company’s original schedule.