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Volume 12, Number 42
NBAA Issue 2 of 2

October 18, 2006
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Plenty to See as the NBAA Convention Hits Its Strideback to top 

Yesterday’s opening general session officially kicked off the 59th annual NBAA convention in Orlando, Fla. NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen moderated the session, which highlighted the contribution of business aviation to the U.S. economy and the future of the national airspace system. After Bolen spoke briefly, Caterpillar president and U.S. Chamber of Commerce chairman Gerald Shaheen stressed the importance of business aviation to the general economy. "Business aviation allows business to get done," he said, and then went on to lambast the airline industry’s push for aviation user-fees, which he said would adversely effect business aviation. Shaheen suggested that the user-fee battle is not so much over how the FAA will be funded, but who will control airspace usage. More...

After 20 years of research, engineering and test flights, Honda yesterday announced it had submitted its FAA type certificate application for its innovative HondaJet. In addition, the Japanese manufacturer said it had formed a new subsidiary -- the Honda Aircraft Company -- to produce and sell the airplane, set its initial price at $3.65 million, finalized specifications and scheduled 2010 as the date by which it intends to achieve both type and production certification. (Nothing like getting it all out of the way at once...) The announcements came during a well-attended press event at the HondaJet exhibit on the floor of this year's NBAA annual meeting and convention, which is only the aircraft's third public display. More...

Adam Aircraft Designs & Manufactures the A700 AdamJet & A500 Centerline Piston Twin
Adam Aircraft's A700 features twin Williams FJ-33 engines, state-of-the-art avionics, and comfortable seating for eight (or seven with an aft lavatory). The A700 is currently undergoing flight test and development. Adam Aircraft's A500 centerline piston twin has been Type Certified by the FAA and offers superior safety, range, and performance, along with the pressurized comfort of a roomy six-seat interior. For complete details on both aircraft, go online.
More Debuts and Forward Momentum on Existing Jetsback to top 

The PiperJet might have been Piper Aircraft’s worst-kept secret, but the company did manage to keep what the single-engine jet looked like under tight wraps. The perimeter of Piper’s NBAA booth was draped from floor to ceiling until yesterday morning’s unveiling, with very dedicated employees posted guard to prevent any sneak peaks. When the curtain finally fell, a small, six-passenger jet with winglets and a tail-mounted turbofan engine emerged into view. Piper president and CEO James Bass touted the virtues of the $2.199 million PiperJet: 360-knot cruise speed, 35,000-foot ceiling, 1,300-nm NBAA IFR range and 2,500-foot takeoff distance. The VLJ has a wide 36-inch door, but with its 800-pound payload don’t expect to carry four passengers and everything but the kitchen sink, unless the sink is made of carbon fiber that is. More...

With some 1,020 hours spread among 335 test flights, Dassault Aviation's Falcon 7X is edging closer to EASA and FAA type certification, according to a briefing the company conducted Monday here at NBAA. So far, the fly-by-wire, 69,000-lb.-MGTOW 7X has been through hot- and cold-weather trials, as well as low-altitude, high-speed test flights. Its Pratt & Whitney Canada PW307 turbofan engines have accumulated some 7,200 hours of testing, including 3,100 hours on the 7X and another 820 on a Boeing 720 engine-test aircraft. Before Dassault achieves full type certification -- expected in early 2007, with initial deliveries to follow in the second quarter -- it expects to fly the 7X as many as 1,500 hours, all of which it plans to conclude by the end of 2006. More...

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Big Things to See — On the Outside and on the Insideback to top 

In the business aviation world represented here at Orlando this week, there are aircraft of almost every type, color and purpose. There are small ones, fast ones, slow ones, pretty ones and ugly ones, but there are no purpose-built business jets bigger than the Boeing Business Jet, or BBJ. And, now, there are three different versions. First announced at the Dubai Air Show in Nov. 2005 and based on the commercial 737-900ER, Boeing this week said it had two orders from undisclosed customers -- Boeing never sells and tells -- for its newest offering, the BBJ3. If size matters, the BBJ3 will probably win: it offers 1,120 sq. ft. of cabin space, 35 percent more than the original BBJ (derived from the 737-700's fuselage and the 737-800's wing and landing gear) and is 11 percent larger than the BBJ2, the big parts of which are all based on the -800. All versions of the BBJ are still available from Boeing -- some 114 copies have been sold to date -- with the original featuring the longest range, some 6,200 nm, and the BBJ2 and BBJ3 going for the greatest cabin volume. More...

Pilatus’s newly unveiled Next Generation PC-12 will include several major enhancements such as integrated avionics, a new cockpit design, higher performance and advanced systems. Of note, the upgraded PC-12 is the first platform for the Honeywell Primus Apex avionics system, which was designed for the general aviation market. The new PC-12 cockpit layout features four large displays (two primary flight displays and two multifunction displays) that integrate flight information, engine monitoring, aircraft configuration, pressurization and environmental controls. Additionally, flight and weather data, charts, aircraft system information and trip planning functions can be displayed on the MFDs. More...

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Bombardier Aerospace's presence here at NBAA in Orlando has its roots, in part, firmly planted in last year's show: two new types announced here last year were approved by respective certifying authorities in recent days. The most recent was Transport Canada's grant of approval for the Challenger 605's Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 avionics suite and aircraft window modifications -- when compared to its predecessor Challenger 604 -- to be added to the company's type certificate. Transport Canada awarded the type certificate for the latest in the Bombardier line of widebody bizjets on Oct. 5, a month ahead of schedule. A freshly completed 605 is on static display this week at the Orlando Executive Airport, underscoring the aircraft's entry into service later this year. Elsewhere, the company also announced it had secured FAA approval on Sept. 28 -- in the form of a supplemental type certificate -- for the Learjet 60 XR's Collins Pro Line 21 avionics suite, paving the way for production. More...

Snecma introduced the name Silvercrest for its new 8,000- to 12,000-pound-thrust engine family. The intended application for the Silvercrest is a large cabin, long-range aircraft with a maximum takeoff weight between 45,000 and 60,000 pounds, Snecma said. It can also be scaled up to power a new generation of 40- to 60-seat regional jets. Core engine technology demonstration tests began last January, but no certification date has yet been announced. More...

Names Behind the Newsback to top 

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