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BlueSky Business Aviation News | 25th June 2015 | Issue #326

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United States

Bolen: Rep. Shuster’s remarks foreshadow ‘troubling’ House FAA bill

Remarks made last week by U.S. Rep Bill Shuster (R-9-PA) before the Aero Club of Washington have made clear that the congressman intends to introduce legislation that would create a new, privatized aviation system funded by user fees - concepts that are contrary to business aviation's long-standing positions.

Shuster, who chairs the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, said a forthcoming House FAA reauthorization bill will include such principles. A debate over FAA reauthorization is now taking place in Congress, with the current authorization set to expire Sept. 30.

In response to the discussion of such proposals, NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen said: “While the details are not yet clear, we obviously have several concerns about the kinds of concepts being described. For decades, congressional oversight of America's air traffic system has safeguarded the aviation needs of the entire public, including the people and companies that rely on general aviation in small and mid-size towns.

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Boeing opens state-of-the-art research center in Alabama

New 80,000-square-foot facility devoted to the creation and development of analytics and simulation technologies

Boeing officially opened its new research and technology center in Alabama. The facility will serve as the company's hub for collaborative technology development with academic institutions and research partners in analytics and simulation in the Southeast United States.

Local government leaders and Boeing Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President of Engineering, Operations & Technology John Tracy joined employees to open the facility's 80,000 square feet of laboratories and offices that are devoted to the creation and development of technologies for use in current and future Boeing products.

"The next 100 years of innovation starts here," said Steve Swaine, leader of the Boeing Research & Technology-Alabama (BR&T-Alabama) research center. "We've brought together a team made up of the best and brightest in data analytics, advanced engineering and many other disciplines to help Boeing create, develop, produce and support the best aerospace products in the world."

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Growth continues at Delta Private Jets

Jet Card sales and Charter activity fuel growth

Delta Private Jets (DPJ) continues to be on track for a strong 2015. Year-to-date, Jet Card sales are up 33% over last year, while Charter sales are up 32%. The company’s overall revenue is also up significantly.

“We continue to add late-model aircraft with state-of-the-art technology and amenities most requested by customers to our fleet to meet the record demand we are experiencing,” said James Murray, Vice President of Operations for Delta Private Jets. “As our sales activities continue their robust growth, we are committed to providing our customers with an aircraft when they need it, where they need it.”

DPJ’s fleet has grown to 64 aircraft, with several additions imminent.

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MAC Air breaks ground on new FBO at Portland International Jetport

MAC Air Group, the Portland, Maine, family owned and operated aviation services company took a step forward in the development of its first FBO last week as it broke ground at Portland International Jetport.

The new 43,000 sq. ft. facility - of which 30,000 sq. ft. will be dedicated to hangar space - represents an investment of approximately $6m and will serve the growing demand from an expanding international and domestic business aviation client base. Completion is scheduled for January 2016.

The 13,000 sq. ft. FBO will comprise two levels with the first floor incorporating first class crew and passenger facilities. The second floor will be dedicated to office space including MAC Air Group’s corporate headquarters. Crew will benefit from a crew lounge and quiet room, flight planning resources, shower facilities and fitness room.

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Pilatus delivers first Chilean registered PC-12 NG

The first Chilean registered PC-12 NG has been delivered to Santiago-based Aerocardal during a ceremony at Pilatus’ facility at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport in Broomfield, Colorado, USA.

The new aircraft is configured for both executive transport and medevac roles and can be easily converted from one interior to the other in less than two hours.

“We had a great experience with the delivery of SN 1513 and a superb trip back home to Chile,” said Aerocardal Director Alex Kauffmann, “the plane was immediately put to use in our operations, and has been extremely well received by our passengers, flight crews, and customers.”

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FAA releases Draft Environmental Assessment for Southern California airspace improvements

The U.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Aviation Administration is seeking public comment on the Draft Environmental Assessment (Draft EA) for the Southern California Metroplex project, a comprehensive proposal to improve the flow of air traffic into and out of Southern California by making the airspace safer and more efficient.

The project proposes to replace dozens of existing conventional air traffic procedures with new satellite-based procedures, which are a key component of the FAA’s Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). The Metroplex proposal encompasses most of Southern California and includes six major airports.

The FAA has issued the project’s Draft EA for public review and comment until July 10 and is holding public workshops where people can learn about the proposal and how to submit comments on it. After evaluating and responding to all substantive public comments, the FAA could adopt the entire proposal, adopt portions of it, or modify it.

“Public engagement and participation in the Southern California Metroplex process is critical,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta. “We take public input very seriously, and we strongly encourage people, agencies and officials to learn about, and weigh in on, this proposal.”

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U.S. Aviation Fuel Prices

King Aerospace wins new Boeing VVIP paint contracts

King Aerospace Commercial Corporation (KACC) has been awarded two new VVIP paint contracts as a subcontractor to Boeing’s Executive Transport Services and Support group based in Oklahoma City.

The first project is for the exterior refurbishment of a 737 aircraft which arrived at KACC’s facility in May 2015. Work on the second aircraft, a Boeing 757, is scheduled to begin in mid-July 2015. KACC’s paint quality and on-time delivery is attributed to obtaining these projects.

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GAMA welcomes Senate confirmation of Neffenger to lead TSA

The General Aviation Manufacturers Association has welcomed the U.S. Senate’s confirmation of Vice Admiral Peter V. Neffenger to serve as Administrator of the Transportation Security Administration.

Neffenger, who is currently serving as Vice Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, has held numerous positions in the service, including as Deputy Commandant for Operations a d Deputy National Incident Commander for the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

Vice Admiral Peter V. Neffenger

In a statement on Tuesday, GAMA President and CEO Pete Bunce said, "GAMA applauds the Senate for quickly confirming Vice Admiral Neffenger to this important post. Vice Admiral Neffenger’s extensive background in operations and security issues makes him an excellent choice to lead the TSA at a critical time for the agency.

We look forward to working with him as we continue to make progress on risk-based general aviation security, including airspace access for general aviation aircraft and pilot training.”


Silver Air

Chuck Stumpf

Santa Barbara-based aircraft management company, Silver Air, has added Chuck Stumpf to its executive team as the company’s new executive vice president of business development.

Stumpf has more than two decades of executive experience in the private aviation industry. He brings a wealth of knowledge and background in sales, marketing and ownership expertise, all of which is expected to support Silver Air’s growth plan in the second half of 2015 and beyond.

Stumpf has a Bachelor of Science degree in business aviation administration, with a minor in international aviation business and computer applications from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He completed the Developing Leadership Capability in Corporate Aviation program at the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business, and he holds a single-engine pilot license with IFR and commercial ratings. Prior to aviation, Stumpf served as a Corpsman and Special Operations Coordinator in the U.S. Navy.

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United States

Flexjet accepts delivery of first Gulfstream G450LXi

Fractional provider Flexjet accepted delivery of its first G450LXiTM during a ceremony at Gulfstream's headquarters in Savannah, Georgia on Tuesday.

The delivery is part of an order placed in October 2014 for up to 50 new aircraft from Gulfstream’s iconic line of business jets. The order makes Flexjet the only fractional provider offering new Gulfstream business jets including the G450LXi, G500LXiTM and G650LXiTM.

The new G450LXi will be publicly unveiled at the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) Regional Forum at New Jersey’s Teterboro Airport, today, Thursday 25th. read more

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VistaJet fleet grows to 50 Bombardier bizjets

Bombardier Business Aircraft and VistaJet have announced the expansion of VistaJet’s in-service fleet to 50 aircraft comprised exclusively of Bombardier business jets.

This key milestone will be achieved within this month of June when the company takes delivery of a Global 6000 aircraft. read more

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28 East delivers latest completion project of ultra-long range ACJ319

Supporting its expanding brokerage business, 28 East has announced the delivery of its first aircraft completion project, an Airbus Corporate Jet ACJ319.

The green aircraft was completed at the Woensdrecht Fokker Facility in Holland and took just over a year to finish. It was delivered to its home base Munich, in April, where the operator K5-Aviation, which has extensive experience in operating long range and VVIP large jets, will manage it. read more

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Axis FFS installed in Sicily

An Axis Cessna 560 XLS Full Flight Simulator to EASA level D requirements has been installed at the Mediterranean Aeronautics Research & Training Academy in Enna, Sicily. This advanced FFS includes the Axis TMCS for remote-assisted support.

A first on two levels, the installation represents Axis’ first foray into Italy, and it is also the first Level D simulator in Europe operated by a university both for training and for human factor research.

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Top 25 European Departure Airports

BlueSky's '25 Most Popular Business Aviation Departure Airports in Europe' in association with Avinode

This monthly popularity ranking is based on the number of unique flight requests with their first passenger leg departing out of IACO codes starting with E, L, and U, transmitted through the Avinode Marketplace over the last 30 days.

For the full list click here



















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Training and retaining Generation Y in aviation maintenance

With the ever-growing requirements for maintaining the global aviation fleet, appropriate and timely maintenance training remains one of the most pressing issues uniting the minds of the aviation industry around the globe.

On the one hand the so-called 'millennials', or 'Generation Y', currently making up around a third of the global workforce, might make the industry’s adaption to new technologies easier as they have more experience using computers than wrenches.

On the other hand however, as they usually expect to stay in a job for less than three years, retaining the new workforce might appear to be the real challenge.

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MIT study calculates how air transport connects the world

Every time you’ve seen a plane take off or land at a hub airport, you’ve seen the world growing more connected, according to a new model developed by researchers at MIT.

In a study published in the journal Transportation Research Part E, the MIT team outlines a model that determines the degree to which regions around the world are connected via air transportation.

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Honeywell and Inmarsat achieve key milestone to bring high-speed wi-fi to airplanes over land and water

GX Aviation Completes In-Flight Testing; Confirming High-Speed Ka-Band Connectivity

Paving the way for a new era of in-flight wireless connectivity similar to what is available at home or in the office, Honeywell Aerospace and Inmarsat have successfully completed the first phase of hardware and satellite network flight tests for GX Aviation broadband services.

Honeywell’s JetWave-branded hardware enables airplanes to connect to Inmarsat’s Global Xpress satellite constellation for GX Aviation global Ka-band in-flight Wi-Fi services. read more

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United Kingdom

Zenith Aviation first to introduce the Piaggio Avanti EVO into charter service

Biggin Hill-based Zenith Aviation has announced the purchase of its first Piaggio Avanti EVO aircraft, due for delivery this October.

Zenith is the first UK based operator to order the Avanti EVO, which will be the catalyst for a significant upgrade in Zenith Aviation’s aircraft charter offering.

The EVO will offer a step-change in short-haul charter operations. It is the fastest next-generation twin turboprop in production. Cruising at 460 mph and with a range of 1,980 miles, the EVO can seat up to nine passengers in the most comfortable and roomiest of in-flight cabins (5 feet 9 inches high and 6 feet wide).

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United Arab Emirates

Etihad Flight College orders Embraer Phenom jets

Embraer has announced that Etihad Flight College, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has signed a purchase agreement for four Phenom 100E jets, and options for three additional aircraft of the same model.

Based on current list prices the deal is valued at about $30m USD, if all options are exercised, and deliveries of the aircraft to Etihad Flight College will start in the first quarter of 2016.

The delivery of the four new Embraer Phenom 100E jets will bring to 20 the number of aircraft in the trainer fleet, which is currently composed of 16 single-engine propeller airplanes.

“We are very pleased with the selection of the Phenom 100E by Etihad Flight College,” said Marco Túlio Pellegrini, President and CEO, Embraer Executive Jets. “The Phenom 100E has proven to be the ideal aircraft for jet pilot training, delivering advanced cockpit technology, along with high performance and high reliability, at a low operating cost.”

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HAITEC granted Gulfstream G650 approval

HAITEC Aircraft Maintenance GmbH has received Part-145 line maintenance approval for Gulfstream G650 private jets.

As an EASA Part-145 organization, HAITEC already holds approvals from Civil Aviation Organizations of Russia, United Arab Emirates, Azerbaijan, Bermuda and the FAA for a broad range of Boeing and Airbus aircraft, as well as Gulfstream business jets.

“Besides line maintenance for G650s, our Erfurt subsidiary HAITEC VIP Maintenance is now also capable of offering cleaning and storage for such jets in the heart of Germany. This new capability brings an added level of convenience to G650 operators in Europe as the number of maintenance providers with that approval is limited,” said CEO Frank Rott.

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Paula Kraft, founder and President of Atlanta, GA-based Tastefully Yours Catering.

Religious Based Catering Requests

s Tastefully Yours Catering is in the Southern United States, requests for
religious based catering are not the norm.

For those catering sources in similar situations, the request for religious based dietary catering can become a challenge.

As the phone rang recently and the person on the other inquired . . . Do you do Kosher Catering? . . . my staff had to reply “no”, but we can gladly procure the kosher catering for you.

Why don’t we produce Kosher catering in-house was the next question. How difficult can it be? Now I ask you, do you understand what Kosher catering means, the requirements necessary when purchasing, preparing, and delivering a kosher meal for a client?

And that doesn’t include what is required to prepare a kosher meal on the aircraft.

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Air Service Basel booms during Art Basel 2015: unveils expanded and renovated FBO

Air Service Basel (ASB) saw one of its busiest weeks so far this year during the Art Basel 2015 exhibition (June 15-21).

Air Service Basel’s FBO welcomed a record number of almost 350 movements, including 80 private and business jets flights on the peak day of the event - a 15% increase in movements compared to last year’s event - the majority being larger cabin sized jets such as Challengers, Gulfstreams and Global Express aircraft.

“The Art Basel is always the busiest time of the year and the ultimate test for our FBO”, says Claudio Lasagni, ASB’s CEO, “and I am delighted at how our team rose to the occasion this year.” He adds that, “as every year, the outstanding co-operation and teamwork of the various partners and authorities at the EuroAirport Basel with Air Service Basel’s FBO team was a major contributing factor to the tremendous success.”

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Cabin Crew

Three critical OSHA standards now affecting cabin crewmembers

Corporate Aviators develops Compliance Process Tool to meet new worker protections

In order to further protect all workers, whether temporary or permanent, the FAA has issued Notice 8900.288, which mandates that certain OSHA standards now apply to aircraft cabin crewmembers onboard an aircraft while in operation.

The notice applies to all aircraft operations that utilize at least one aircraft cabin crewmember. Corporate Aviators Inc., an aviation employment and labor contractor, has reviewed the FAA and OSHA regulations and statutes and has developed a Compliance Process Tool to meet these new worker protections.

The three OSHA standards that apply include hazard communication, bloodborne pathogens and occupational noise exposure. While these are not new OSHA standards, they now apply to a whole new group of permanent and temporary employees, and employers will be required to put certain processes in place to be compliant.

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European Cabin Service Conference


BBGA meets at Brooklands

The Business and General Aviation Association (BBGA) will meet at Brooklands, Weybridge for its annual summer networking evening on Thursday, 2nd July (18:00 to 21:00 hours).

Alternating with their popular House of Commons' reception that coincides with Farnborough Air Show week, Brooklands, the original home of Sopwith Aircraft, Hawker and Vickers, is a new venue for the Association and its 100 plus aviation industry membership.

Evening sponsors include Close Brothers Aviation and Marine, Gulfstream, Rockwell Collins and Shell Aircraft. BBGA Marc Bailey CEO and Marwan Khalek Chairman ( CEO of Gama Aviation Plc) will host.

BBGA members are encouraged to arrive early to view the Brooklands museum whose exhibits include a restored Concorde, VC10, Vanguard and Viscount, the latter named after the late Stephen Piercey, plus a selection of vintage motor cars and motorbikes.

More information at: http://www.bbga.aero/events/


NetJets unveils bespoke tail design to celebrate twelve year partnership with Art Basel NetJets Europe has unveiled a unique tail design on board one of its brand new Signature Series Challenger 350 jets. read

Alpha Star becomes first ACJ319neo launch customer Riyadh-based Alpha Star has become the first to announce a commitment for an Airbus ACJ319neo, consolidating its role as the largest VVIP charter operator in the Middle East. read

It takes teamwork to build a great catering experience. Paula Kraft, founder and President of Atlanta, GA-based Tastefully Yours Catering. read

On Air Interiors puts style in the sky On Air Dining, the UK inflight dining experience provider has launched a new product range called On Air Interiors. read

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Canadian pilot enters Guinness Book of World Records

George Neal, a career de Havilland Aircraft of Canada test pilot and amateur aircraft builder, enters the Guinness Book of World Records as the oldest active, licensed pilot on Earth, at 96 years and 194 days as of his qualifying flight June 2, 2015.

Joining de Havilland on a permanent basis in 1947, Neal participated in the certification of many aircraft types, including commanding the first flights of the DHC-3 Otter, CS2F ‘Tracker’, DHC-4 Caribou, as well as being a member of test pilot team on DHC–1 Chipmunk, DHC-2 Beaver, DHC-6 Twin Otter, DHC-5 Buffalo, DASH 7 and DASH 8. In total, Neal has logged more than 15,000 hours on 150 aircraft types.

Neal flies his own Chipmunk (CF-JAG) from Brampton airport on the outskirts of Toronto. In this aircraft he has logged 250 hours aloft since 1992. This Chipmunk was initially part of the RCAF training fleet. Designed in Canada, and produced there as well as under license in the UK and Portugal, 1283 were built between 1946 and 1956.

Neal also built a First World War Sopwith Pup fighter aircraft from original plans and drawings, and flew it to Rockcliffe Airport (CYRO) in Ottawa, home of the Canada Aviation & Space Museum where he was chief test pilot for many years. He also restored a Second War Hawker Hind biplane fighter; both aircraft are now part of the museum’s permanent collection.  He was inducted into Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame in 1995.

George Neal has become the oldest active, licensed aircraft pilot
Photo: Rick Radell

“Flying has been a part of me for most of my life," he said, "and I believe it has kept me able to doing what I like best. And I plan to continue to fly my Chipmunk for a long time yet.”

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