TSA Administrator John Pistole announced plans today to retire from the agency at the end of this year. He has led the TSA over the past 4.5 years using a “risk based” security philosophy that has shielded U.S. general aviation airports from onerous security rules. In a statement, NATA president and CEO Thomas Hendricks said, “NATA deeply appreciates Administrator Pistole’s service to the country and applauds his devotion to the safety and security of our transportation systems.
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On October 10 an Italian judge found former Finmeccanica CEO Giuseppe Orsi and former AgustaWestland CEO Bruno Spagnolini not guilty of international corruption, but convicted the pair for the lesser crime of “false invoicing” and sentenced them to two-year prison terms and fined each €1.5 million. The sentence is suspended pending an anticipated appeal.
The International Council of the Aeronautical Sciences (ICAS) presented its 2014 Award for Innovation in Aeronautics to Honda Aircraft president and CEO Michimasa Fujino earlier this week at the 29th ICAS Congress in St. Petersburg, Russia. Fujino was recognized by ICAS for his “pioneering contributions” in the design and development of the HondaJet and its over-the-wing engine-mount configuration. According to ICAS, “The award acknowledges accomplishments in the development and introduction of innovative concepts in major aircraft programs.”
Honda Aircraft president and CEO Dr. Michimasa Fujino will be honored with the SAE International Clarence L. (Kelly) Johnson Aerospace Vehicle Design and Development Award next month at the SAE 2015 AeroTech Congress & Exposition in Seattle.
Banyan Air Services of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., has been named a HondaJet dealer serving the Southeast U.S. Under the agreement, Banyan Air Services will provide HondaJet sales and service for the eight-state territory that includes Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee and South Carolina.
At EAA AirVenture this week, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) unveiled a new effort to make the entry into aviation more affordable to a wider range of prospective private pilots. At its exhibit at the show, the association has on display the first “152Reimagined,” part of a test concept in conjunction with Wyoming-based Aviat Aircraft to meticulously renovate and update approximately a dozen old Cessna 150s and 152s, which will then be made available to flight schools and flying clubs at a base price of $89,900 and $99,900, respectively.
Steve Taylor, president of Boeing Business Jets (BBJ), announced here at EBACE 2014 the company has sold its first VIP 787-9 Dreamliner, and the undisclosed customer has chosen London’s Andrew Winch Designs (AWD) and EH Aviation Advisors to handle the completion. Taylor noted that AWD has handled interior design for several BBJs. “This is going to be spectacular,” he said as he showed renderings of an interior scheme from AWD at the BBJ press conference. (Renderings of the client’s selected interior were not displayed as per AWD’s confidentiality policies.)
Progress on the HondaJet continues toward certification, which Honda Aircraft expects to receive in next year’s first quarter, the company said today at EBACE. The first production HondaJet–S/N 11–is now in final assembly in the company’s manufacturing facility in Greensboro, N.C.
Several aviation industry groups, including NBAA, expressed strong support for two Senate security bills: S.1893, the Transportation Security Acquisition Reform Act; and S.1804, the Aviation Security Stakeholder Participation Act. The former would streamline the TSA’s acquisition process and allow for better congressional oversight of TSA resources.
The Greater Washington Business Aviation Association’s (GWBAA) 2014 safety standdown takes place May 1 at the NTSB training center in Ashburn, Va. The keynote speaker will be Greg Feith, a former member of the NTSB and an aviation safety and security expert. Planned topics include the ISBAO program, hangar safety systems and sleep apnea/fatigue.
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