Agents of the FBI entered the administrative offices of Grand Junction Regional Airport on November 7 and seized approximately 100 boxes of airport records dating from 2009 to the present. To date, neither the bureau nor the U.S. District Attorney’s Office has given a reason, and a federal judge has sealed court records of what airport authorities assume is a federal investigation.
GA Innovation China has passed its audit by the Aviation Suppliers Association (ASA) and its quality system is accredited and able to operate to ASA-100 in the People’s Republic of China. A joint venture between Air China and GA Telesis, GA Innovation China, serves hundreds of aviation maintenance organizations supporting Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier, McDonnell Douglas and Embraer aircraft and components as well as CFM International, General Electric, Honeywell, International Aero Engine, Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce jet engines and components.
AAR recently completed the first heavy maintenance check at its new maintenance, repair and overhaul facility at Chennault International Airport in Lake Charles, La. The work was performed on an Airbus A330. AAR occupies approximately 520,000 sq ft of service and administrative space at the facility, including eight hangar bays, seven of which can accommodate widebody aircraft. Construction of a 112,000-sq-ft hangar that can accommodate aircraft as large as the Airbus A380 and Boeing 747-8 is under way and expected to be completed next summer.
The third Sukhoi Superjet 100 for Mexican airline Interjet landed in Toluca, Mexico, on November 6, joining two SSJ100s already in service with the airline. The aircraft rolled out from SuperJet International’s hangar in Venice, Italy, upon completion of customization and a technical acceptance procedure on November 5. On the same day, MSN 95208 took off from Venice Marco Polo Airport for the ferry flight to Toluca, following stops in Keflavik, Iceland, and Bangor, Maine.
In late October Air Seychelles announced its purchase of three 19-seat Viking Air DHC-6 Twin Otter Series 400s as part of a plan to renew its domestic fleet for services between Mahé and Praslin, as well as other islands in the archipelago, including Bird, Denis and Frégate. The airline expects to take all three turboprops by mid-2015 but holds an option for earlier delivery if aircraft become available. It now operates one Viking Twin Otter Series 400 and three aging de Havilland Canada-built Series 300s, all of which it plans to replace with the newly ordered airplanes.
Exeter, UK-based Flybe plans to slash another 500 jobs as part of a continuing cost-cutting exercise centered on removing excess capacity and improving worker productivity. The announcement follows an earlier round of cuts that saw Flybe shed 590 jobs this year. The company employed some 2,700 people at the end of September.
The FAA awarded a supplemental type certificate to Century Flight Systems for installation of its Century C4000 autopilot in the Piper PA-30 and PA-39 Twin Comanche. Prices start at $19,995 (plus installation). The autopilot’s features, according to Century, include “GPS/VOR/LOC/LOC REV coupling, fully automatic glideslope coupling from above or below, selected angle intercept capability when using an HSI (45-degree intercepts using a DG), altitude hold, voice prompter, attitude hold command, auto-trim or trim prompting.”
Even as researchers study ways to improve detection of in-flight icing and make airframes and engines more resistant to icing conditions, they continue to struggle to understand the icing phenomenon–especially the formation of ice crystals–according to speakers at a conference on the subject organized by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) in Cologne, Germany recently. Ice-prevention techniques present their own challenges, which aircraft makers, airports and ground handlers are endeavoring to solve.
In an article in the October issue (“ADS-B Coming Soon to Asian Airspace”), AIN provided details about the upcoming ADS-B out mandates in Australia, some Asian countries, Europe and the U.S. An alert reader pointed out that there is a wrinkle that operators should be aware of: some of the mandates in Asia require equipment that meets DO-260 or -260A standards, which are less stringent than the DO-260B standards required in the U.S. and Europe.
As government mandates for equipage with ADS-B out avionics begin this month (generally above 29,000 feet in some countries’ airspace), FlightSafety International has launched an ADS-B online training program. The FAA-approved 45-minute course costs $165 per person and is available at FlightSafety’s eLearning website. Subjects covered include operating principles and procedures, flight planning, MEL issues, phraseology, emergency codes, incident reporting and more.