As part of its initiative to combat the problems associated with aging aircraft, the FAA has funded a suite of projects at the University of Dayton Research Institute (UDRI) that includes self-healing wires, smart clamps and radio wire fault detectors. The goal of the project is to eliminate the time-consuming task of tracing wire faults.
Hawker Beechcraft King Air B100, Rapid City, S.D., June 15, 2009–King Air N4490M, operated as a medical transport under Part 135 by Air Methods, encountered clear-air turbulence during a mission from Gordon Municipal Airport in Nebraska to Rapid City Regional Airport. The patient sustained severe injuries as a result of the turbulence; the four flight crewmembers received minor injuries. VMC prevailed during the flight.
Self-healing wire technology, developed as part of an FAA initiative to combat the problems associated with aging aircraft, has been licensed to Ohio-based Pinnacle Systems–its first commercial licensee.
Charter broker Mercury Jet Charter is offering one-way charter rates under its new Mercury Express program. Mercury will sell the entire aircraft or empty legs for rates starting at $4,500. Typical one-way rates include a coast-to-coast Citation X for $21,000, and a light jet from New York to South Florida starting at $7,000.
Dassault Aviation could launch an all-electric Falcon business jet program in 2014 or 2015, said company engineers at a conference held by the ASTech Paris Region aerospace cluster at the Paris Air Show in June.
The possibility of commercially available synthetic jet fuels took a step closer to reality last week when ASTM International’s aviation fuels subcommittee passed a new specification for alternative jet fuel. The new specification details the properties and criteria required to control the production and quality of synthetic fuels for aviation use.
PPG Aerospace is developing transparencies for aircraft cockpit and cabin windows that help keep the interior cooler by reducing heat from the sun. The clear solar-reflective window coatings cut solar transmittance in half, said PPG Aerospace global director Anthony Stone. Aircraft like the Boeing 787 and Hawker 4000 that are built using composites don’t dissipate solar heat as well as aluminum airplanes, Stone noted.
Volvo Aero has been working on a new generation of lightweight engine fan frames, and is exhibiting a demonstrator on its stand (Hall 2A Stand B114). The fan frame is the largest the company has produced, and is constructed from composites and titanium. The fan frame is a complex part of the engine in terms of loads, especially as it incorporates the lugs that attach the engine to the airframe.
Singapore’s Horizon Fuel Cell Technologies (Stand B75) is officially unveiling its new Aeropak fuel cell system here this week. It is designed to increase the flight endurance of small and stealthy electric unmanned aerial systems (UAS) by as much as 300 percent, the new product will bring an immediate performance improvement over today’s best battery systems, according to Horizon.
Saft has been selected to supply batteries for both China’s AVIC ARJ21 regional jet and its Russian competitor, the Sukhoi Superjet. The company is already set to provide the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II with batteries for the low-rate initial production phase.