The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded
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BLOUIN TO LEAVE NBAA...
The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) announced earlier
this week that Senior Vice President, Operations, Robert P. Blouin
would resign from the organization effective Aug. 31, 2004. Blouin's
departure comes in the same month the NBAA announced its selection of
General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) President Ed Bolen
as its new leader. The two developments -- and the short fuse between
Blouin's announcement and his scheduled departure date -- fueled
speculation that his decision was somehow related. However, Blouin
told AVweb yesterday that his decision had nothing to do with
Bolen's pending arrival. Instead, Blouin said his decision to leave
the NBAA has been "in the works for some time" and that the timing was
related more to his scheduled vacation than to any other factor.
According to the NBAA, Jay Evans, the association's director of
operations, will serve as acting vice president of operations, until a
replacement for Blouin is found. More...
For the association's part, Blouin's departure seems to be on good
terms. "Bob has made enormous contributions to NBAA and the business
aviation community in his seven years with the Association," said Don
Baldwin, NBAA board of directors chairman and interim president and
CEO. "We are sorry to see Bob leave, but we wish him all the best in
his new endeavors." In another sense, however, Blouin's departure was
expected. In fact, the announcement followed one from March 30, 2004,
which occurred near the beginning of a sequence of events leading to then-President and CEO
Shelley Longmuir's departure from the NBAA after only nine months on
the job. Of course, Blouin subsequently decided to remain with the
NBAA after Longmuir left. That episode, among other events, led to
Bolen's being named the association's incoming president earlier this
month. In fact, Blouin jokingly referred to that resignation this week
with AVweb when he noted that his decision had been some five
months in the making. More...
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G450 RECEIVES FAA TYPE CERTIFICATE
Gulfstream Aerospace earlier this month was awarded a Type Certificate
by the FAA for its new large-cabin, long-range Gulfstream G450 bizjet.
Receipt of the paperwork for the latest in the company's stable of
sought-after jets -- introduced less than a year ago -- means
Gulfstream is on schedule to begin customer deliveries in the second
quarter of 2005. According to Gulfstream, the same internal team that
developed the G550 -- which earlier this year was named the recipient
of the 2003 Collier Trophy by the National Aeronautic Association --
and the G500 developed the G450. All three aircraft, plus the
to-be-certificated G350, include the highly automated PlaneView
cockpit, which presents an advanced flight deck designed to
significantly reduce pilot workload. More...
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OFFERS NEW RVSM PACKAGE
Raytheon and D&D Aviation Services of Marietta, Ga., announced this
month a service allowing business aircraft owners to obtain
operational DRVSM (Domestic Reduced Vertical Separation Minimums)
approval for Beechcraft and Hawker aircraft. The service revolves
around D&D's Domestic RVSM Procedures and International Operations
manuals and joint development of an application data package for
submission to the FAA or appropriate international regulatory
authority. According to Raytheon, once the packages are approved by
the FAA, the operator receives a Minimum Equipment List (MEL) specific
to their aircraft and operating and placarding procedures, as well as
the required control pages in a computerized format. According to
Raytheon, it can also provide the required RVSM altitude monitoring
services to ensure the aircrafts performance meets all RVSM
flight requirements. Raytheon Aircraft Services GPS-Based
Monitoring Unit (GMU) Data Collection service includes collection of
the flight data during one GMU flight, which will then be forwarded
for evaluation. More...
FLIES BUSINESS TURBOPROP PROTOTYPE
It looks kind of like the results of an immoral mating between a
Hawker and a Starship, but it didn't come from Beech/Raytheon.
Further, it's apparently not the result of any U.S. aerospace jobs
being exported to India. Instead, the latest project to come out of
that country's fledgling aircraft manufacturing industry -- dubbed
"Saras," for crane -- is billed as an all-original 14-seat executive
transport with both military and civilian missions in mind. The design
made its first flight on May 29, 2004, when an experimental version
flew for 25 minutes. This week, what is apparently a production
prototype aircraft first flew for 20 minutes, culminating an effort
involving as many as 700 designers and engineers since 1990, according
to published reports. The Saras, with two Pratt and Whitney of Canada
PT6A-66 turboprop engines mounted on its tail in a pusher
configuration, is a brainchild of the National Aeronautics Laboratory
(NAL), a subsidiary of the Council of Scientific and Industrial
Research in Bangalore. Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. is also
participating in the project. More...
NEW MEXICO'S GOVERNOR GET A NEW PLANE?
Speaking of politics, that's what appears to stand in the way of New
Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson's (D) getting a new King Air. And the
details won't surprise the average corporate aviation manager who has
to deal with his own internal bureaucracy. After soliciting as many as
six bids, Richardson's administration is in the throes of completing a
deal to buy a new plane as early as next week. But Republicans in the
state legislature, which must approve the deal since it would be
funded with as much as $4 million in state highway money, are balking.
ADDS TWO AUTHORIZED HAWKER SERVICE CENTERS
Raytheon this week announced that two of its Raytheon Aircraft
Services (RAS) locations were designated as authorized Hawker Service
Center facilities. By adding the two facilities -- RAS San Antonio and
RAS Indianapolis -- to its list of authorized Hawker service centers,
Raytheon has upgraded nine of the 10 U.S.-based RAS facilities to
authorized Hawker Service Centers. Additional facilities include
Hawker Aircraft Services in Little Rock, Ark., and in Chester, U.K.
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NAMES NEW CUSTOMER SERVICE VICE PRESIDENTS
Cessna Aircraft Company this week announced the promotion of two
long-term employees to its customer services operation as vice
presidents. Jack Stiffler has been named vice president of Citation
parts distribution and Peter Wilkinson has been named vice president
of Cessna parts distribution. Both Stiffler and Wilkinson will report
directly to Ron Chapman, senior vice president of customer service.
It's baaaaack. "It" is something dubbed "Robolander," variously described as a device or a
software package ultimately designed to allow ATC to take control of
an aircraft and land it in the event of, ummm, "trouble." Systems like
it were widely proposed in the immediate aftermath of the Sept. 11,
2001, terrorist attacks, although it quickly fell out of favor once
the reality of the costs and logistics of fitting it to every airliner
sunk in. Similarly, the possibility that a "system" could
inadvertently take a crew and passengers for an excursion to the
nearest airport has meant the idea hasn't really caught on. We can't
imagine why. More...
...the next issue of AVweb's BizAVflash will be e-mailed to you
on Sept. 15. Until then! More...
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