Astronautics upgrades Bell 212: Astronautics Corporation of America, in partnership with Central American Aviation Services (CAAS), located in Guatemala City, has completed the first Bell 212 glass cockpit upgrade for the Guatemalan Air Force with its Badger Pro+ Integrated Flight Display System. The Astronautics upgrade consists of four 6×8-inch high-resolution displays, a control panel, and an engine data concentrator unit. The retrofit transforms the legacy cockpit from its steam gauges to a digital, full-glass cockpit, replacing primary flight displays and engine instruments with the same Badger Pro+ Integrated Flight Display System flying on new production Bell helicopters. Badger Pro+ is the latest generation of Astronautics’ Badger display family with demonstrated reliability over one million flight hours in the harshest environments. The displays show primary flight, navigation, and engine data. The system displays high-definition video from multiple inputs and provides night vision compatibility. Badger Pro+ integrates information from across all systems on the aircraft, providing an operationally advanced pilot interface and a path for adding safety features, such as terrain and traffic awareness and Wide Area Augmentation System. The readability of the displays is world class with colour, contrast, letter sizing, and fonts that provide exceptional viewability. Astronautics’ Badger Pro+ is the standard-fit, integrated flight display system on production Subaru Bell 412EPX and Bell 429 helicopters.
YTO Cargo chooses Pratt & Whitney for PW4000 engine support: YTO Cargo has selected Pratt & Whitney for support of their new fleet of in-service Boeing 767-300ER powered by PW4000 94-inch engines. A cargo airline headquartered in Hangzhou, China, YTO Cargo will receive a support service package from Pratt & Whitney as part of the agreement for selecting the PW4000. The service package will allow for smooth entry into service of the 767-freighter fleet. “This agreement with Pratt & Whitney came after careful considerations in terms of engine experience, reliability and supportability within China,” said Hongxiang Li, president of YTO Cargo Airlines. “The support package will help ensure our operations are efficient as we continue to grow our fleet and our business.” Pratt & Whitney has delivered more than 2,500 PW4000 94-inch engines that have collectively logged more than 140 million flight hours on commercial aircraft around the world. The PW4000 94-inch engines power Boeing 747, 767 and MD-11 aircraft, as well as Airbus A300 and A310 aircraft. The PW4000 94-inch engine was the first model in the PW4000 family of high-thrust engines, covering a range of 52,000 to 62,000 pounds of thrust. Approved for 180-minute Extended-range Twin-engine Operations (ETOPS), the engine provides airlines with operational flexibility and high reliability. The engine’s benefits are further enhanced by excellent performance retention, long on-wing times and low maintenance costs.
Embraer sells Praetor 600 to Aerodata: Embraer has signed a contract with Aerodata AG from Germany to sell a Praetor 600 to be converted into a flight inspection aircraft to fulfil the full range of flight inspection missions. The aircraft is scheduled to be delivered to Aerodata in 2022 when they will begin to install the systems and equipment required to execute the intended missions. The state-of-the-art Praetor 600 aircraft fully complies with the high-level requirements of the end-user and is prepared for the installation of Aerodata’s most modern flight inspection system AeroFIS. After the modification, the aircraft will be delivered and operated by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, Seoul Regional Office of Aviation, Flight Inspection Centre in South Korea, which has conducted an international public tender for this acquisition and will be the end-user of the solution. This is the first time Embraer is selling an aircraft for this kind of mission outside of Brazil, opening new market opportunities for Embraer’s innovative solutions using current products. The contract with Aerodata also includes training for both pilots and mechanics and an initial support package for the final end-user. The aircraft will be equipped with state-of-the-art equipment, such as head-up displays (HUD), high-end communication systems, paperless operation capability, and additional customised interior features. The fully configured Praetor 600 Flight Inspection Aircraft will be a state-of-the-art platform able to perform a wide array of flight inspection tasks in the modes of site survey, surveillance, commissioning inspection, periodic inspection, any special inspection, procedure validation, and ADS-B airborne checks.
CPaT signs new deal with Cockpit4u: CPaT Global announced they have been awarded a new contract by Cockpit4u. CPaT will be providing Computer Based Training (CBT) for initial and recurrent training for the majority of their fleets, including Aircraft Systems courses, CPaT’s General Subjects library, Interactive Diagrams, Aircraft Procedures suite, and Invent Content Design software. “CPaT is honored to have been selected by Cockpit4u, whose mission statement is to cooperate with only the most innovative developers and leading operators,” said Capt. Greg Darrow, CPaT’s vice president of Sales. “CPaT’s suite of aviation training distance learning solutions ensures Cockpit4u maintains its mission to provide the very best training to its pilots and students around the world.” Headquartered in Berlin, Germany, Cockpit4u is a leading, international Approved Training Organisation (ATO) and trains pilots from all around the world from London to Singapore, offering the best and latest technical equipment and simulators, as well as state-of-the-art CBT.
Etihad Airways intros ‘verified to fly’: Travellers flying from Abu Dhabi with Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, will be able to validate their COVID-19 travel documents before arriving at the airport. Guests can arrive at the airport with confidence and with peace of mind, knowing they have met all essential requirements before their flight. With the formalities out of the way, verified travellers can enjoy fast track check-in at the airport by going to the dedicated Verified to Fly desk for a quicker and smoother experience. To use the Verified to Fly service, guests can sign-up by visiting Manage my Booking and will receive further information on how to submit their documents. Once the submission has been checked by the Verified to Fly team, guests will receive a ‘success’ email if their documents meet government requirements. If requirements are missing or not met, the guest will be asked to resubmit or check their documents. Guests can also check their Verified to Fly status at any time by visiting Manage my Booking. Verified to Fly will be available for all guests departing Abu Dhabi from 12 May 2021 (excluding China) and for flights departing Amman, Beirut, Dhaka and Manila shortly thereafter. Future developments are in progress to introduce the service on other destinations.
Riga Airport completes second runway: The second rapid-exit taxiway, built with the support of the Cohesion Fund, has been put into operation at Riga Airport. The renovation of a part of the runway at the airport’s own expense has also been completed. The large-scale construction works began last summer. Within the framework of the Cohesion Fund project “Development of Secure and Environmentally Friendly Infrastructure at Riga International Airport”, a second rapid-exit taxiway has been built at Riga Airport. Thus, the movement of aircraft to and from the runway and in the taxiing area will be shortened, significantly reducing the time and fuel consumed in land manoeuvres, which in turn will reduce CO2 emissions at Riga Airport. The total amount of construction works is 2.5 million euros. In turn, the asphalt pavement of the aerodrome infrastructure was changed in a total length of 5.7 kilometres – 5 kilometres for the runway shoulders in a width of more than 7 metres and for a separate section of 660 metres across the entire runway width. The construction works also included the construction of drainage systems and rainwater sewerage system, as well as the renovation of the runway lighting system, the application of horizontal markings and the landscaping of the territory. The total cost of the project is 4.5 million euros.
StandardAero to support Air Nostrum: Spanish regional airline Air Nostrum L.A.M. S.A. has selected StandardAero to provide support services for the Pratt & Whitney PW127M engines powering its fleet of ATR 72-600 regional turboprops. Under the exclusive five-year agreement, StandardAero will provide Air Nostrum with PW127M hot section inspections (HSIs) and additional services from its OEM-authorized PW100 Designated Overhaul Facilities (DOFs) in Gonesse, France and Summerside, PE, Canada. Air Nostrum has also renewed its selection of StandardAero as the exclusive support provider for the Honeywell GTCP36-150RJ and RE220[RJ] auxiliary power units (APUs) equipping the airline’s fleet of CRJ200 and CRJ900/1000 regional jets. Under these contract renewals, StandardAero will continue providing Air Nostrum with a range of services for the GTCP36-150RJ and RE220[RJ] from its Maryville, TN location, which is a Honeywell-approved Authorized Service Center for the APUs. Air Nostrum is one of the largest regional aviation companies in Europe and ranks amongst the 20 largest regional aviation companies in the world. Air Nostrum is Spain’s leading regional aviation company, operating for the Iberia Group under the Iberia Regional Air Nostrum brand. Air Nostrum conducted its first flight in December 1994, since when it has operated more than 2 million flights and carried around 90 million passengers.
Constant Aviation invests in enhanced paint shop: Constant Aviation in the US announced major improvements at its aircraft painting operation at Orlando Sanford International Airport which will expand its capabilities and require hiring additional technicians. The paint shop is part of a full-service MRO facility and can accommodate large-cabin aircraft such as the Gulfstream 650, Dassault Falcon 7X and Bombardier Global. It is the latest in a series of upgrades at Orlando Sanford since Constant Aviation opened the facility four years ago, and is expected to bring 50 new jobs to Orlando. The company recently earned certification through the FAA’s Safety Management System (SMS) Program, ranking Constant Aviation among the leaders nationally in business aviation maintenance safety and risk mitigation. The first aircraft to be painted in the new facility, a Bombardier Global Express, is scheduled to happen on 15 May. Also at the Orlando Sanford facility is Constant’s dedicated interior centre where cabinetmakers and upholsterers specialize in complete cabin reconfigurations and refurbishments. These modifications improve the comfort and usability of each aircraft for its operators. Other capabilities at Orlando Sanford include scheduled inspections, avionics upgrades and general maintenance on aircraft from a variety of manufacturers.
GKN Aerospace delivers compressor case for UltraFan: GKN Aerospace in Sweden has successfully delivered the first Intermediate Compressor Case (ICC) to the Rolls-Royce UltraFan engine demonstrator programme. GKN Aerospace is a Core Partner in Clean Sky 2 and in the Rolls-Royce led UltraFan engine demonstrator programme with responsibility for design and manufacture of the ICC. The ICC is a structure between compressor cases, which carries the rotor gas loads to the engine casing and thrust mounts. Development, manufacture and testing of the ICC will demonstrate and validate a range of new technologies, including a low-cost and robust sectorised fabrication concept with castings. This makes use of an innovative welding method based on computer simulations; optimised bleed system aerodynamics and acoustics; shorter aggressive duct design and 3D printing of attaching parts; and model-based design methods. UltraFan is Rolls-Royce’s next generation engine family and aims to offer a 25 percent improvement in fuel efficiency over the first generation of Trent engines. It features a new engine core architecture and introduces a geared design. The aim is full engine ground test during 2022, with flight-testing to follow.
ABL Aviation names new commercial officer: ABL Aviation, the global independent aircraft investment management firm, has named Michael Weiss as chief commercial officer. Weiss will be responsible for further solidifying ABL Aviation’s close airline and institutional investor relationships and spearheading growth. Weiss has held senior positions at a number of financial institutions including Investec, where he was head of Aircraft Finance & Leasing and instrumental to driving the bank’s strategy of establishing dedicated aircraft related funds. More recently, he was head of Aircraft Trading at SMBC Aviation Capital, where he led the Aircraft Trading team into new markets and built up a presence in Asia, specifically Japan, by offering new and innovative solutions to investors, alongside the company’s Japanese shareholders. He was also a director of ISTAT, the industry’s not for profit trade association from 2017 to 2021, and has established his own advisory and consulting business for investors and financial institutions in the aviation sector.
ITP Aero integrates Hucknall site into global industrial footprint: Following the announcement on 3 December 2020, Rolls-Royce’s former site at Hucknall (East Midlands, UK) is now part of ITP Aero’s global industrial footprint. ITP Aero gains full ownership of the Hucknall facilities, enhancing the company’s position as a major global aerospace company. In addition, the commodity of complex fabrications, including design engineering and supply chain management will be transferred into ITP Aero. The products manufactured in Hucknall, which include fabrications, combustors and fan outlet guide vanes (OGVs), are complementary to those manufactured in other ITP Aero facilities and will add to the company’s product portfolio. As a consequence, Hucknall’s integration will bring the enlarged business potential new business opportunities. The integration of Hucknall into ITP Aero adds approximately 700 employees to the company’s global workforce, amounting to 4,300 worldwide. Hucknall’s current strong management team will continue to lead the organisation and its highly skilled workforce, ensuring a smooth transition as the site’s operations fully integrate into the ITP Aero operating model.