For the first time in five years, worldwide deliveries of general aviation airplanes declined in 2008 (dragged down by slumping piston deliveries), but business jet and turboprop shipments increased by double digits and industry billings climbed to $24.8 billion, a 13.4-percent increase over 2007, according to an annual report released this morning by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA).
Bombardier Aerospace plans to raise production of its commercial aircraft by about 10 percent this year, the company announced yesterday. The increase comes as the company continues to enjoy relatively strong demand for its Q400 turboprop, while the backlog for its CRJ line of regional jets dwindles.
China’s Xi’an Aircraft Industry Company (XAC) has started preliminary work on the Modern Ark 700 (MA700), a 70-seat turboprop regional aircraft that it expects to fly by 2013 or 2014.
The MA700 would be more energy-efficient than the Chinese turboprop now under development–the 60-seat MA600– and designed for high-altitude operations, said Geng Ruoguang, vice general manager of China Aviation Industry Corp. (AVIC), parent of XAC.
Large-cabin business jet flight activity in December took the biggest hit–26 percent–compared with activity over the year-ago period, according to the ARG/US year-end business aircraft activity report. The results are somewhat at odds with other market reports, such as the UBS business jet update, which identify the light jet segment as the one that has logged the largest decline.
Large-cabin business jet flight activity in December took the biggest hit–26 percent–compared with activity over the same period in 2007, according to the ARG/US year-end business aircraft activity report. The results are somewhat at odds with other market reports, such as the UBS business jet update, which identify the light jet segment as the one that has logged the largest decline.
India became the first export customer for the Boeing P-8 Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft. Unusually, Boeing clinched the sale of eight aircraft on commercial rather than FMS terms, and persuaded India to commit even before the P-8’s first flight.
Paul Theofan, a veteran of more than 20 years at Unison Industries, has been named president and managing executive of General Electric subsidiary GE Aviation Czech. This past June, GE acquired assets of powerplant manufacturer Walter Engines in hopes of increasing its involvement in the small turboprop segment. The company’s Czech division employs about 400 workers in a new facility near Prague.
French-based Thales today announced the success of the first power-on ground test of its new avionics suite for the ATR -600 series, after 14 months of collaboration with the regional turboprop manufacturer. Under an integrated modular avionics architecture, the new flight deck uses AFDX (avionics full duplex switched ethernet) communication networks.
Jet Support Services (JSSI) recently announced a no up-front enrollment fee option for all turboprop and helicopter operators who enroll in a JSSI engine hourly-cost maintenance program.
Future fuel prices will determine the markets for regional turboprop and jet aircraft, according to Saab Aircraft Leasing president and chief executive Michael Magnusson. The Swedish manufacturer maintains a sizeable fleet of its Saab 340 and 2000 regional turboprop designs for lease and expects to benefit from industry moves to reduce costs by making greater use of such equipment rather than regional jets.