Engine manufacturer GE Aviation on Monday gave an update on its class H series turboprops, which are powering four aircraft for their first flights this year.
Daher-Socata (Booth 6540) has already delivered 12 examples of the new TBM 900 turboprop single and is planning on handing over another 39 this year. Four production slots are still available in 2014 for the $3.711 million per aircraft, CEO Stéphane Mayer said at an EBACE press conference on Monday.
As of May 16, 11 aircraft had been delivered in North America and one in Europe. A handful are to enter into service in 2014 in other regions. North America maintains a dominant position in Daher-Socata’s order book, while the Asian market remains very slow.
Legendary aircraft designer Ed Swearingen died on Thursday at age 88, on the eve of the resumption of production of his persistent light jet–the SJ30–by current program owner SyberJet. It was 1986 when he unveiled the small, single-pilot jet powered by a new breed of turbofan engine by Williams International that would propel the airplane swiftly and far, with performance that outstripped most business jets of the era.
Pratt & Whitney Canada’s FAST (Flight Data Acquisition Storage and Transmission System) engine diagnostic, prognostic and health-management (DPHM) system recently received a Transport Canada Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) for use on Bombardier Dash 8 Series 200 and 300 turboprops, P&WC announced Wednesday on the occasion of the annual Regional Airline Association Convention in St. Louis. Transport Canada STC No. SA12-70 now includes Bombardier Models Q200, Q300 and Q400.
The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Honeywell TPE331-5, -5A, -5AB, -5B, -10, -10R, -10U, -10UF, -10UG, -10UGR, and -10UR turboprop engines. It was prompted by engine propeller shaft coupling failures, leading to unexpected propeller pitch changes and resulting in high aerodynamic and asymmetric drag on the airplanes using these engines. This proposed AD would require removing from service certain part number propeller shaft couplings.
Though TraqPak data released today by aviation services company Argus indicates that business aircraft flying continued its upward trend last month, climbing 1.4 percent year-over-year, this wasn’t the big news. “The bigger story was the turnaround in the fractional market, which posted the first year-over-year increase since September 2011,” Argus said.
Pre-owned business jet and turboprop inventory as a percentage of in-service aircraft continued to fall in March, though pricing has yet to find a floor, according to data released yesterday by aviation services firm JetNet. Inventory of used business jets fell 1 percent year-over-year, to 12.1 percent, the third lowest since 2005, JetNet said. Pre-owned turboprop inventory barely managed a decrease, falling just 0.1 percent to 7.7 percent from March 2013.
Spending a week in China at the Asian Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition is a refreshing reminder that as much as countries like China want to put general aviation to work, the actual implementation is going to be nothing like what aviation-minded westerners are used to. It seems we have a naive desire to see general aviation in China replicate the landscape of non-commercial aviation in the U.S., Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
Carey Matthews (left), general manager Shanghai Hawker Pacific Business Aviation Service Centre (SHPBASC, Booth H128) receives a plaque from Brad Thress, senior v-p Customer Service, Textron Aviation (Chalet 13), identifying SHPBASC as an authorized Cessna Service Center.
“We’re privileged to service Cessnas around China,” Matthews said.
Textron Aviation, which includes Cessna, Beechcraft, and support services for Hawker jets, no longer in production, has some 325 of its products in China, encompassing about 200 piston, 70 turboprop and 50 jet aircraft.
Beidahuang General Aviation of Harbin, China, signed for a Beechcraft King Air C90GTx today at ABACE 2014, an order that was brokered through Textron Beechcraft’s channel partner in China, Avion Pacific. The C90GTx will join a fleet of nearly 90 business aircraft operated by Beidahuang General Aviation, which is a subsidiary of Chinese state-owned agribusinesses conglomerate Beidahuang Group. Beidahuang General Aviation plans to use the turboprop twin for personnel transport and aerial survey. The company’s fleet of helicopters and airplanes logs more than 10,000 hours per year.