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Friday, June 20, 2008

Firm Sees Piston Production Tailing Off

The market analysis firm Forecast International sees piston-powered helicopter production to taper off in coming years. Production in that category has been booming since 2002, when only about 290 units were built, said Ray Jaworowski, senior analyst for the Newtown, Conn.-based firm. He expects nearly 800 piston helicopters to be built this year. After that, “we expect that piston output will gradually decline to more sustainable levels.” A key reason is the advent of new, low-cost single-engine turbines like the Robinson Helicopter R66 and the Schweizer Aircraft 434. “We also expect we'll eventually see a new single turbine from Bell to replace the B3 Jet Ranger, which is being taken out of production.” For related news
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