VIP cabins for narrowbody airliners have stuck to traditional approaches with little thought for the practicalities of aircraft. This is the basis upon which SR Technics (Booth 2425) set out to redefine the approach to cabin design based on what it sees as a changing customer base, with younger generations of travelers who are more casual and more tech-savvy.
UK carrier EasyJet said it will apply new technologies, including operating small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), to maintain its Airbus fleet. The airline is also developing 3D virtual reality and augmented reality technology, customized engineering applications and early fault prognosis. It is installing Panasonic Toughpad tablets in cockpits fleetwide.
Eric Trappier, Dassault Aviation’s chairman and CEO, said late in April that he found the business jet market “a little bit slow.” He would like to see a more active market, especially in the U.S.“But step-by-step we are back on the right track, in terms of orders,” he added. AIN understands that Falcon salespeople have found the first four months of 2014 tougher than expected.
Swiss citizens have rejected their government’s plan to buy 22 Saab Gripen E combat aircraft in a referendum. The verdict was not unexpected, since recent opinion polls had shown a majority against the plan, despite its previous approval by the Swiss parliament. However, the “no” vote majority was only 53.4 percent. Under Switzerland’s unique version of democracy, many significant and/or controversial matters of public policy are decided in this way.
Business aviation services group Comlux has strengthened its management team as it seeks to further differentiate itself from competitors in both the completions and refurbishment and aircraft management sectors. In an interview ahead of this week’s EBACE show, the Zurich, Switzerland-based group’s president and CEO Richard Gaona told AIN that Comlux will not be following the cost-cutting approach apparently favored by some competitors.
Comlux has increased its managed fleet to 19 jets with the addition of an Airbus ACJ318. The aircraft is based in the Middle East and will be operated by a European crew entirely for the private use of its undisclosed owner.
According to the group’s president and CEO, Richard Gaona, Comlux’s approval to operate under ETOPS 180 extended-range-over-water rules and conduct Cat IIIB approaches has been a key differentiator from rival management companies. For Airbus aircraft alone, the company has logged more than 12,000 flight hours over the past six years.
Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group is one of the oldest and most respected names in aerospace through its long history, consisting primarily of military work. While it has been involved in business aviation for many years, and has 40 years’ experience in performing MRO work on Cessna Citations, the group is now dramatically expanding its footprint in the sector.
The Flight Safety Foundation (FSF) has a new president and CEO, Jon Beatty, who until recently held the same positions with International Aero Engines. He comes to the aviation safety advocate with solid manufacturing industry experience, having begun his career as a quality engineer with Sikorsky. He was confirmed in his post in April and is now heading up FSF’s efforts to promote further advances in flight safety.
The Single European Sky ATM Research (Sesar) effort, the “technological pillar” of the future Single European Sky (SES) vision, has a new lease on life. In April, the European Parliament voted to extend the mission of the entity managing the research and development program, known as the Sesar Joint Undertaking (SJU), by eight years until 2024. The SJU expects the European Union Council of Ministers will approve the extension this summer.
A combination of growth from new business aviation markets such as the Middle East and Asia and recovery in the more mature markets of Europe and North America has inspired flight-training provider CAE to triple investments in facilities. Half of all investment is going into new simulators. The group has been adding these at a rate of two to four each year and expects to install another 25 new units at its worldwide locations over the next five years.