Strata, Leonardo sign partnership deal: Strata Manufacturing, an aero-structures manufacturing company wholly owned by Mubadala Investment Company PJSC, and Leonardo, have extended their 10-year association by signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to collaborate on the development and fabrication of composite aero-structure components for major OEM programmes. The MOU will see Strata and Leonardo work to expand their presence in the global aero-structures sector by leveraging their collective engineering experience and production capabilities to spearhead new technology development. The MOU covers the provision of technical support services and knowledge exchange from Leonardo. In addition to Leonardo, Strata serves other leading aircraft manufacturers, such as Airbus, Boeing and Pilatus.
Erickson completes 2019 delivery for Korean Forest Service: Erickson, which manufactures utility aircraft, said it has delivered a K8 to the Korean Forest Service (KFS), completing the delivery of their 2019, two-aircraft order. This brings the KFS operational fleet up to six S-64 Air Crane helicopters. KFS and Erickson share nearly a 20-year relationship, with developing a model firefighting and emergency response program complete with by-the-hour maintenance services, pilot training, and delivery of remanufactured aircraft. The S-64 is well-known in Korea with a strong reputation for being the best firefighting aircraft available. In 2001, KFS was the first foreign government to purchase S-64 helicopters from Erickson. Due to their success with the aircraft, KFS continues to modify and upgrade its fleet with the addition of K8, incorporating the latest modifications, including composite main rotor blades and glass cockpit.
Flexjet accepts delivery of new Embraer Praetor 500: Flexjet, a fractional private jet provider, said it has accepted delivery of a new Embraer Praetor 500, part of a US$1.4 billion order announced in October with Embraer Executive Jets, for the Praetor 500 and 600 aircraft and Phenom 300 light jets. Flexjet is the fleet launch customer for the Praetor 500, expanding its fleet of superior midsized aircraft. The Praetor 500 is the next generation of the Embraer Legacy 450, which Flexjet introduced to the market in 2016 and became a popular component of the premium Red Label by Flexjet offering. In competing head-to-head with the Citation Latitude, the Legacy 450 stands out with 7.5 percent more cabin volume and an additional 23 cubic feet of baggage space.
Rolls-Royce Pearl 15 gets US certification: The Pearl 15, the exclusive engine option for Bombardier’s Global 5500 and Global 6500 aircraft, has received its official certification by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The engine, which was developed at the Rolls-Royce Centre of Excellence for Business Aviation engines in Dahlewitz, Germany, has previously been certified by the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA). The Pearl 15 was custom-designed to power the Global 5500 and Global 6500 aircraft, which have the longest range and the largest cabin in their category and feature Bombardier’s signature smooth ride technology.
Metrojet adds aircraft to managed fleet: Hong Kong-based Metrojet, part of the Kadoorie Group, has welcomed five additional business jets to its managed fleet in 2019, increasing its fleet of Gulfstream jets to 16. Scott Neal, senior vice president, Worldwide Sales, Gulfstream Aerospace commented: “Gulfstream is delighted to see this latest addition to Metrojet’s managed fleet, which reflects the continued growth and popularity of Gulfstream aircraft in the region. Metrojet has been a valuable partner as we work together to develop Hong Kong’s business aviation industry.”
Two new airlines on tap for Thailand: Thai Eastar Jet and Thai Summer Airways are expected to launch new services, according to media reports quoting the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand. Thai Eastar is a joint venture between Thai investors and South Korean carrier Eastar Jet, while the latter is between Thai and China investors. Thai Eastar Jet was expected to obtain the CAAT’s air operator certificate in January. CAAT is in the process of issuing a certificate to Thai Summer. According to Thai Summer Airways’ homepage, it is a regional low-cost airline registered in Thailand. It was established in early 2018 and is scheduled to be officially opened in January 2020.