In mid-July, Embraer announced that it had joined the 3 fuselage sections of the first Legacy 500 midsize executive jet. Flight tests are scheduled to begin later this year.

Embraer has signed a memorandum of understanding with China's Min­sheng Financial Leasing Co for 20 Embraer executive jets. Types were not disclosed. Conversion into firm orders is expected over the next 5 years, with deliveries to begin as early as this year.

Gulfstream's wide-cabin G150 has received both Brazilian and Chinese type certification. These are the G150's 9th and 10th type certification validation, including approvals in the US, Canada and the European Union. Gulfstream says the midsize bizjet can jump the 2417 nm from São Paulo SP, Brazil to Caracas, Venezuela in 5 hr 26 min—up to 1 hr 24 min faster than other aircraft in its class.

Piper Aircraft has begun fabrication of the new PiperJet Altaire single-engine bizjet. Assembly is scheduled to begin in Aug 2011. The aircraft's inaugural flight is slated for 2013 with certification and deliveries the following year. The $2.6-million Altaire aims for a maximum range of 1300 nm at 360 kts, with operating costs 25% below those of comparable production very light jets.

Stratos Aircraft of Bend OR is preparing a 1/5 scale model of its Stratos 714 very light personal jet for wind tunnel tests this month at the University of Washington in Seattle. The single-pilot aircraft, to be certified for IFR and known icing, is expected to cruise at 415 KTAS at service ceilings up to FL410. With 4 occupants, planned range is 1500 nm at 402 KTAS. The company hopes to fly 2 prototype aircraft by 2013.

On Jul 20, leaders of the House Transportation Committee introduced HR 2594—The European Union Emis­sions Trading Scheme Prohibition Act of 2011. The bill would ban US air carriers and other aviation operators from participating in EU-ETS, which due to come into full effect for international operators in Jan 2012. The Aviation Sub­committee, chaired by Rep Tom Petri (R-WI) (above), also held a hearing on the matter on Jul 27 under the title "The European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme—a violation of international law."

A bipartisan group of 26 US senators have sent a letter to Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood stating that the government's proposal to end the block aircraft registration request (BARR) program represents "a troubling reversal of the decade-old policy put in place to uphold the privacy rights of thousands of Americans." The senators pointed out that law enforcement agencies can already monitor and track the location of users in the National Air­space System, adding, "BARR simply prevents unauthorized nongovernmental actors from knowing the location of private citizens."

NBAA has inked a 5-year agreement with Shanghai Airport Authority (SAA) to host the Asian Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition (ABACE) at SHA (Hongqiao, Shanghai, China.) China has recently been promoting development of its GA industry. "Combining these developments with the country's status as the world's 2nd largest economy and the outcome is a business aviation market primed to take off," says NBAA Pres & CEO Ed Bolen. "Putting ABACE in Shanghai allows China to see all that business aviation has to offer multitasking, multicity and multicountry flying business people." ABACE 2012 is scheduled to take place from Mar 27–29.

Charter & management

Voyager Jet Center at AGC (Allegheny County, Pittsburgh PA) has added a Citation X to its charter fleet, extending its reach to transcontinental and international operations.

ExecuJet Australasia has become the first fixed-wing operator in the world to receive accreditation under the new Basic Aviation Risk Standard (BARS) program with zero findings. It is only the 2nd operator worldwide to be registered without restriction against the new risk-based standard. The program was developed by the Australian office of the Flight Safety Foundation to assess the safety standards and performance of flight operations of leading resource companies such as BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Shell.

Executive AirShare and Executive Flight Services, its aircraft management subsidiary, have relocated to private quarters at DAL (Love, Dallas TX). The new facility includes a 19,000 sq ft hangar and 8400 sq ft of lobby and office space on the property of Signature Flight Support.


Hawker Beechcraft Services has announced plans to open a new aircraft maintenance facility at ILG (Wilmington DE). The installation will include some 40,000 sq ft of hangar space, 8500 sq ft of back shop space and 10,000 sq ft of offices, including guest offices for customers to use while their aircraft are being serviced.

Mid-Continent Instruments has broken ground for a 6200 sq ft addition to its Wichita KS headquarters near AAO (Col James Jabara, Wichita KS). The $2.7-million expansion will house the growing True Blue Power division and engineering department.

West Star Aviation will provide maintenance services at TAC Air's latest facility at SUS (Spirit of St Louis MO). TAC Air recently acquired the location from Signature and will provide fuel and other ramp services there. West Star Aviation specializes in airframe and engine maintenance, as well as major modifications, avionics installation and repair, interior refurbishment and related services.

Avidyne has added SVS to the latest software upgrade for the Entegra Release 9 (R9) integrated flightdeck system. SVS is available for installations with up to 3 independent flight displays.

Duncan Aviation LNK (Lincoln NE) has received an STC for Wi-Fi operations in a Gulfstream V. The Wi-Fi system is designed to work with Aircell's Gogo Biz inflight Internet service. The first installation was completed for TWC Aviation at Duncan's avionics satellite facility at VNY (Van Nuys CA). The company had received an STC for similar installations in the Gulfstream IV/IVSP earlier this year.

Jet Aviation CPS (Downtown, St Louis MO) has earned a Wi-Fi STC for the Learjet 40 and 45. The unit creates a certified Wi-Fi hotspot in the cabin using Aircell's Gogo Biz and Swift­Broadband technology. The company plans to adapt its new STC to other aircraft, including the Gulfstream V, Bombardier Challenger 300, Challenger 605 and Global series.

An advanced flightdeck from Universal Avionics is featured on 2 CASA-Nurtanio CN235-110 MPA maritime patrol aircraft delivered recently to the (South) Korea Coast Guard. The flightdeck features 3 large-format flat panel displays, a multimission management system, dual Vision-1 SVS, and TAWS. The CN235-110 MPA is built and outfitted at the state-owned PT Dirgantara Indonesia. The Korea Coast Guard has ordered 2 more similarly equipped aircraft for delivery this August.


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