The Challenger 350 will become the time-to-climb leader of the entire Bombardier business jet line once it enters service next year, Bombardier Challenger vice president and general manager Stéphane Leblanc said at a technical briefing at EBACE. Bombardier expects the super-midsize jet to reach 41,000 feet in 18 minutes, surpassing the manufacturer’s current leader, the Learjet 60.
Bombardier Business Aircraft chose Strasbourg, France-based Happy Design (Booth 7011) to render the paint scheme on its Learjet 75 demonstrator here at the EBACE static park. Happy Design’s Didier Wolff has also been commissioned to create designs for the entire Bombardier line of demonstrators, including Learjet, Challenger and Global models.
If you see Michal Dvorak here at EBACE wearing a big smile, congratulate him on his new appointment. He was just named chief financial officer of ABS Jets (Booth 2052), with operational bases in Prague and Bratislava. Dvorak has always had a keen interest in both aviation and finance, and his new job will enable him to leverage his expertise in both areas.
Among the few economic forces behind the rather tepid recovery of the market segment covering small and medium-sized business jets, perhaps the most influential rests with the world’s financiers. While the large business jet segment remains buoyant due to its comparative immunity from the vagaries of liquidity availability, for the rest of the market a lack of attractive financing terms remains a serious problem, according Pratt & Whitney Canada (PWC) president John Saabas.
The first production iteration of the Bombardier Learjet 75 will make its debut next week at EBACE, one year after the company announced the Learjet 70 and 75–upgraded versions of the Learjet 40 and 45, respectively–at EBACE 2012. “This debut of the Learjet 75 marks another exciting year of innovation and we look forward to delivering the first one in the fourth quarter,” said Bombardier Business Aircraft president Steve Ridolfi. The Canadian aircraft manufacturer will also have a Challenger 300, Challenger 605 and Global 6000 on display alongside the new Learjet.
Richmor Aviation is preparing to build a $1.2 million hangar at its facility at Schenectady County Airport in New York’s capital region. According to company president Mahlon Richards, the 20,000-sq-ft hangar will be divided into four bays (the inner two to accommodate aircraft up to Challenger 600-series size, while the outer pair can shelter aircraft up to Learjet 60 size) and is intended to attract more business jet tenants to join the six turbine aircraft already based there. Richmor expects to break ground on the new structure this summer and complete it before year-end.
Singapore state-owned ST Aerospace, known for its MRO operation and its passenger-to-freighter conversions, also runs a small business jet charter operation. Subsidiary Pacific Flight Services (PFS) operates from Singapore, although its four jets are registered in Australia.
To mark Learjet’s 50th anniversary, artist Princess Tarinan von Anhalt is using the engine thrust from a Bombardier Flexjet Learjet 40XR, in lieu of a paintbrush, to create new masterpieces today and tomorrow at Signature Flight Support in West Palm Beach, Fla. To create her latest artwork, von Anhalt is hurling paint into the engine exhaust–a force of approximately 3.5 tons–while standing 50 feet between the aircraft and the canvas.
Among the companies making their ABACE debut this year is Nextant Aviation, which is displaying its Nextant 400XT, the remanufactured version of the Beechjet 400 series light jet. The company is poised to play a major part in the Asian entry-level jet market, which currently totals only 342 aircraft worth an approximate $1.23 billion but has huge regional potential. In little more than a year, the company has delivered 26 aircraft to operators in six countries.
Bombardier Aerospace’s Safety Standdown Asia returned to Asia yesterday for a third time. It was held in conjunction with the ABACE show at the Shanghai Marriott Hotel Hongqiao. Free for participants, Safety Standdown Asia “provides pilots, aircrew and flight departments with insights into the factors that precipitate errors in judgment and highlights ways to mitigate them,” according to Bombardier (Chalet 380). The seminar combines both knowledge-based and skill-based training with a focus on human factors.