Granite Aviation opened its FBO at Sandpoint (Idaho) Airport. The company’s new $1.6 million facility features a 3,700-sq-ft private air terminal, 7,000-sq-ft hangar, four aircraft refueling trucks, de-icer truck and recently constructed 171,000-sq-ft ramp. The facility offers fueling, maintenance, storage and ground transportation. Other aerospace companies on the field include business jet winglet manufacturer Tamarack Aerospace, Quest Aircraft and Timberline Helicopters.
“We can capture almost 100 aircraft in the business aviation market,” CEO of Superjet International (SJI) Nazario Cauceglia told AIN.
Boeing won a $9.36 million contract modification from the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa) to refine its concept for a radically improved vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft to the preliminary design review stage. Three other contractors have proposed concepts for the program.
Bombardier is making a strong appearance at the LABACE show with four of its aircraft in the static display at São Paulo’s Congonhas Airport, spanning the entire gamut of the private jet market.
Piaggio Aero’s new Avanti Evo aircraft is making its first appearance outside Europe this week at the LABACE show. The new model has been designed to deliver improved performance and a quieter ride–both inside and out–compared with the existing Avanti II twin turboprop. The Evo is being shown here at Congonhas Airport in the static display area of the Italian airframer’s Brazilian distributor Algar Aviation.
Aviation Partners, Inc. (API) will this week start installing the first set of its high-Mach blended winglets on a Brazilian-registered Dassault Falcon 50. An existing U.S. FAA supplemental type certificate has been approved by Brazil’s ANAC agency. The U.S. company received FAA approval for the modification earlier this year.
Airbus Defence & Space announced a repeat order from Egypt for eight more C295 transports, and one from Brazil for three C295s configured for search-and-rescue. The company will be offering C295s with a winglet option beginning next year, although it did not say whether the newly ordered aircraft would be so configured. Airbus has received orders from 19 countries for more than 140 C295s.
Aerostar (Hall 3 Stand B31) has become one of the first independent European MRO organizations to install Split Scimitar winglets on Boeing 737-800s. The work was carried out for Sweden’s TUIFly Nordic at Aerostar’s Bacau facility in Romania, which is also the location of its headquarters. The winglets were fitted to two 737 aircraft, one arriving in early May and having the work done during a maintenance check, while the other followed shortly afterwards for a maintenance check, wing strengthening and installation of winglets.
Rich Oldfield, GKN Aerospace technical director, told AIN that technology remains at the heart of the company’s ability to succeed in the market and it invests heavily, especially in composites, metallics and developing a “niche portfolio in transparencies, protection systems and coatings, which many of our competitors don’t have.” Alongside this are “important technologies in inspection, assembly and automation.”
Prospects for the much-anticipated launch of the Airbus A330neo appeared to be strengthening on the eve of the 2014 Farnborough International Airshow. While the European airframer was officially remaining tight-lipped on plans for the re-engined model, this has done little to dispel Reuters and Bloomberg reports of a launch announcement this week, citing sources close to the program. In particular, Hawaiian Airlines confirmed that it is actively considering the A330neo as a possible alternative to the A350-800.