Kings of the Air is completing the restoration of the first King Air, S/N LJ-1, for a flight around the world, the fledgling nonprofit group announced today–the 50th anniversary of the King Air’s FAA certification.
Primarily known for its Wipline seaplane floats, Wipaire of South St. Paul, Minn., highlighted its custom interiors for the Caravan, Grand Caravan and Twin Otter. With Wipaire’s Chinese distributor, Alfred Lau of Aviation Supplies, on hand at the booth, visitors viewed photos of recent custom work, including a Grand Caravan EX interior with carpet, cabinets and executive seating, and a partial executive configuration for a new Twin Otter.
On the heels of their agreement signed at the Dubai Air Show in November, Dubai-based trip support company Skyplan Services (Booth H327) and China-based Oriental Sky Aviation (OSA) are exhibiting together for the first time here at ABACE 2014.
Sikorsky is proceeding with the second phase of flight-testing for its Sara demonstrator, an S-76 fitted with special equipment to expand operational automation.
Sandia Aerospace has developed a low-cost standby display, the SAI 340-Quatro, which retails for $3,595. The Quatro provides airspeed, attitude, altitude and slip indications in a lightweight instrument that fits into a standard three-inch instrument hole. The Quatro weighs half a pound and is just 1.4 inches thick. The unit’s lithium-polymer battery provides power for up to two hours. Certification is pending.
Seawings has launched an amphibious seaplane shuttle service to connect Dubai’s remote new Al Maktoum International Airport with the Park Hyatt Hotel in the city center. The new operation has been launched in partnership with flight support provider Jetex, which operates an FBO at the airport in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Ingenio Aerospace introduced a series of products designed to help aircraft manufacturers and interior refurb and completion centers deal with the rapid pace of smart-device technological change. Ingenio’s solution replaces in-cabin connectors with a USB-based receptacle into which various smartphone or tablet arms can be attached. The arms, which can handle as much as 250 pounds, include internal wiring for device charging. Devices fit into an Ingenio SmartPlate, which holds the smartphone or tablet securely and also contains the connector that fits the device.
In-flight catering provider Air Culinaire Worldwide opened an owned-and-operated kitchen in Miami, just three miles from Miami International Airport. The new kitchen becomes the third Air Culinaire Worldwide kitchen in Florida and brings the total number of owned-and-operated kitchens in the company’s network to 19. “Our new kitchen will provide fresh, regional cuisine and familiar favorites to clients operating to Miami for major events or operating to and from the U.S.
Flexjet and Abercrombie & Kent introduced “Passport to the World,” the first completely private jet experience circumnavigating the globe. For $1.5 million, guests will travel for two weeks aboard a Challenger 605 operated by Jet Solutions to seven landmark destinations and get “exclusive access to hidden wonders that are out of reach to the rest of the world,” ranging from the Forbidden City to the Taj Mahal. It includes a Japanese tea ceremony in Kyoto and a private opening of Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia, off limits to the public.
Once again I was reminded that I never stop learning about flying. This time it was a fuel-injected Cessna Skyhawk, which stubbornly refused to start after I landed and taxied to the gas pump to fill it up before putting it away. It was a gorgeous day in Southern California, light winds, incredible visibility and a fun flight out of Santa Monica Airport.