Hartzell Propeller’s “advanced swept airfoil” composite five-blade propeller for the Socata TBM 700/850 has received STC approval from both the FAA and EASA. The new design, specifically engineered for the TBM turboprop single, delivers faster takeoff acceleration, higher cruise speeds and better climb, as well as less noise, it said. According to Hartzell, the new propeller provides for a 100-feet-per-minute faster climb rate, while cruise is two knots faster than with the current four-blade propeller.
Euravia Engineering and Greenwich AeroGroup have entered into a partnership to provide maintenance, repair and overhaul services for Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A and PT6T turbine engines on fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft in the U.S. Through its MRO facilities (Atlantic Aero in Greensboro N.C., Summit Aviation in Middletown, Del., and Western Aircraft in Boise, Idaho), Greenwich AeroGroup will provide engine inventory and component storage, logistics and distribution services across the U.S. and also between the U.S. and the UK.
Flying commercially using a single-engine aircraft under instrument flight rules (SECIFR) or at night may be taken for granted in the U.S., but it has not been possible in Europe–until now. The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has cracked the door open–first for cargo operators and more recently, in the past few months, for flights carrying fare-paying passengers. It has left the decision to individual countries’ regulators, however, and France and Finland have taken the lead.
Blackcomb Aviation has been named a Daher-Socata TBM authorized service center. The designation allows the Vancouver International Airport (YVR)-based MRO to provide support for the growing fleet in Western Canada.
Keystone Aviation’s Part 145 repair facility at Aurora State Airport in Aurora, Ore. has been named a Cirrus authorized service center. Keystone Aviation’s maintenance department was established in 1997 to provide maintenance services for the regional aviation market and the company’s charter fleet. It has since grown to a Part 145 repair station with a Class IV airframe rating. The Aurora location is also an authorized service center for Daher-Socata and operates maintenance facilities at Tac Air Salt Lake City and Provo, Utah.
Daher-Socata announced yesterday at the Paris Air Show that the French DGAC has awarded Rennes, France-based charter operator VolDirect the go-ahead to conduct single-engine IFR (SEIFR) commercial flights in its TBM 850. This is the first time an air charter company has been approved to carry passengers on SEIFR commercial flights in Europe.
A new film about the Patrouille de France has been released at the show and claims to portray the aerobatic team “as they have never been seen before.” The film’s producer and directors, Eric Magnan and Francoise-Olivier Robin, have captured exceptional moments in the Patrouille’s display thanks to the use of a specially-configured Daher-Socata TBM 850 turboprop, which flies fast enough to keep up with the Patrouille’s Alphajets.
During an EBACE interview, Daher-Socata (Booth 1643) airplane division senior v-p Nicolas Chabbert told AIN that none of the company’s design engineers is currently working on its new twin project (NTX) that it has been considering since 2008. “The NTX project is in standby mode,” he said. At least, the Tarbes, France-based manufacturer of the single-engine TBM 850 turboprop knows where its main competitors stand. Pilatus has just unveiled a light twinjet, the PC-24, and Beechcraft now offers a turboprop-only lineup.
Daher-Socata’s NTX project, a new twin the company has been considering since 2008, “is in standby mode,” airplane division senior v-p Nicolas Chabbert told AIN this week at EBACE.
AIN understands that Daher-Socata has considered both a twin turboprop and a twinjet under the NTX project banner. Without referring specifically to one option or the other, Chabbert said Daher-Socata is not excluding any possibility. However, the company has already ruled out resurrecting the Grob SPn program after some in-depth evaluations, including flight tests of the SPn prototype.
Daher-Socata airplane division senior v-p Nicolas Chabbert gave an optimistic outlook at EBACE for sales of the French manufacturer’s TBM 850 turboprop single. At about 40 examples of the aircraft, deliveries this year will be close to last year’s 38–but this time the backlog is much stronger: “We have sold 95 percent of the planned production,” Chabbert said.