Cessna will offer a TKS “weeping wing” anti-icing system for the Cessna Grand Caravan beginning in March, using a system manufactured by Aerospace Systems & Technologies of Salina, Kan. The Cessna system includes laser-drilled titanium TKS panels installed on the leading edges of the wings, wing struts and horizontal and vertical stabilizers.
Honda added another element to the business plan for its aviation ventures last month, when the Japanese carmaker announced the formation of Honda Aero Inc., a subsidiary of Honda Motor Co. Led by Junichi Araki, the new business unit will employ only about 10 people and is scheduled to begin operations by year-end at a U.S. location to be determined.
In the first quarter of this year, the U.S. business jet and turboprop fleet experienced 14 nonfatal accidents, five fatal accidents and 11 fatalities compared with 11 nonfatal accidents, five fatal accidents and 15 fatalities in the same period last year, according to safety research firm Robert E. Breiling Associates of Boca Raton, Fla.
You can buy the flagship Lexus LS460–a fine blend of engineering, craftsmanship and performance–for about $80,000. How can a Rolls-Royce Phantom possibly be good enough to justify costing more than four times as much? That’s one question I pondered as a Rolls representative handed me the key to a $353,000 Phantom.
Students of scoops, badges and other muscularity enhancement on cars will recognize the Mercedes S65 AMG as the most powerful production sedan on the planet.* For the majority of those who give it a passing glance, however, it will probably register as nothing more than a big, solid imported sedan. And that is all well and good.
Gerber Technology has begun expanding its business aviation activity with the sale two new Taurus XM cutting systems to interior components specialist B/E Aerospace. The machine is designed to reduce waste when cutting leather, fabrics, foams and vinyls.
The headline on the current TAC Air FBO chain’s direct-mail publicity campaign reads, “Showing you our love by giving you the bird.” But “the bird” in this case is not the classic New Jersey Turnpike salute, but rather a fully restored 1957 Ford Thunderbird– the classic two-seater upon which the current upscale Thunderbird is based. Pilots have the rest of this month to register for the prize at any of the 10 TAC Air FBOs.
Israel Aircraft Industries of Tel Aviv and Avocet Aircraft of Westport, Conn., have been in discussions with engine manufacturers, including the Honda/ General Electric joint venture company, for the proposed ProJet, an eight-seat very light twinjet. According to Avocet CEO David Tait, IAI and Avocet are within weeks of finalizing their definitive partnership agreement on the development, production and marketing of the $2 million ProJet.
The NTSB concluded that the forced landing of a University of North Dakota Citation 550 research jet on Sept. 30, 2005, in Fort Yukon, Alaska, was caused by the pilot’s “improper use of anti-icing,” which resulted in ice ingestion into both engines and the complete loss of power. No one was seriously injured.
When it comes to trying to determine what plans Honda has for its HondaJet project, a lot of the seemingly obvious evidence could be misleading. For example, just because the company has spent millions developing the engine and airframe hardly ensures that it actually plans to take it to market anytime soon–if ever.