B747 Classic EFIS

Jet Aviation Basel has installed the first electronic flight instrument system (EFIS) for a classic B747, using 6-by-8-inch, wide angle, active matrix liquid crystal displays (LCDs). Supplied by Astronautics Corp. of America, the EFIS will replace electromechanical flight instruments and provide primary flight and navigation functions. The displays will accept digital and existing synchro and analog inputs and can interface with avionics equipment such as flight management systems (FMS), traffic alert collision avoidance systems (TCAS), terrain awareness warning systems (TAWS), air data inertial reference units (ADIRUs), navigation radios, radio altimeters and weather systems.

Jet Aviation Basel and JRG Design Inc. (U.S.) designed, engineered and certified the EFIS integration, along with more than 300 interfaces, under multiple supplemental type certificates. The year-long project involved close to 50,000 hours of engineering, and the upgrade package will allow customers an EFIS installation with minimal downtime–about four to six weeks, according to Rainer Albecker, vice president and general manager of Jet Aviation Basel. The EFIS includes four electronic flight instrument displays, control panels, a hardware kit, and a software package. Extensive ground and flight testing was performed prior to certification by JRG Design and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration.

Jet Aviation Basel also made major avionics upgrades, including HF transceivers, a Teledyne airborne communications addressing and reporting system (ACARS), an airborne data loader, air data computers, a triple FMS and a TAWS. The project finished with a D-check. Visit www.jetaviation.com.

Honeywell’s Bizjet Forecast

Citing the anticipated recovery in the worldwide economy and a major infusion of new aircraft models, Honeywell has predicted the sale of more than 7,700 business jet aircraft, valued at more than $115 billion, over a 10-year forecast period from 2003 to 2013. The manufacturer sees steep growth in the fractional fleet from 2002 to 2007, making that sector’s anticipated performance a key factor: Honeywell projects growth from 731 to 1,210 fractionally owned aircraft and from 4,115 to 6,989 fractional shareholders over the five-year period.

Delivering Honeywell’s 12th annual outlook for the business aviation market, Lynn Brubaker, vice president and general manager, Commercial Aerospace, also cited manufacturer backlogs of about 1,500 aircraft orders, options and deposits (40 percent of which are attributed to fractional programs), and "pent-up demand" for new aircraft, as well as favorable tax incentives, as significant factors in the market boost. Honeywell expects that bizjet sales will improve initially in North America. "That market will offset any slump in other parts of the world," Brubaker said, at the annual National Business Aviation Association convention in Orlando. The business aircraft markets in Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America are expected to follow North America’s lead, with growing business aircraft sales, she added.

The business aircraft market is expected to begin its upswing in 2005, after a 12 percent decline in 2002 aircraft deliveries (676 aircraft), compared with 2001, and an estimated further decline in 2003 deliveries (450 to 500 aircraft). Recent news is not so bad as it would seem, however, since 2001 was a peak year, with 769 aircraft deliveries, thanks largely to mushrooming sales to fractional ownership operators.

Brubaker commented that there are also "a lot of pre-owned aircraft on the market." She added that many are for sale because the owners do not want to invest in RVSM (reduced vertical separation minimum) and other (mandated) upgrades. Visit www.honeywell.com.

QinetiQ-Lufthansa Technik MoU

Cooperation in the development of advanced integrated aircraft cabin system solutions for VIP and executive jets was the thrust of a recent memorandum of understanding (MoU) between QinetiQ and Lufthansa Technik. The two companies plan to advance a range of cabin system solutions, such as security and surveillance systems, cabin acoustics and lighting, to capture more of the $3.5-billion cabin systems market. Visit www.lufthansa-technik.com and www.qinetiq.com.

F-35 Laser System Win

BAE Systems Avionics will supply the laser system for the F-35’s electro-optical targeting system (EOTS) under a contract from Lockheed Martin, with work to be performed at the UK company’s Sensor Systems Division (SSD) facility in Edinburgh. The laser will provide the EOTS with a precision range measurement and a laser-guided weapon designation capability. Development is to start immediately and manufacturing to commence in 2006. Visit www.baesystems.com.

Total’s EVS Approval

Total Aircraft Services (TAS) has announced receipt of supplemental type certificate approval for installation of the Max-Viz EVS-1000 in the complete family of Bombardier Challenger aircraft. TAS was originally awarded the STC for Challenger CL-601 aircraft in March of this year. Visit www.tasaircraft.com.

Broadband for Bizjets

Through an exclusive, multi-year agreement with Connexion by Boeing, Rockwell Collins was able to announce at the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) convention a new global broadband connectivity system for medium- to large-sized business jets. Bombardier is the launch customer for this cabin communications package, called Collins eXchange. Certification in the Global Express, Global 5000 and the newly launched Global Express XRS is expected in early 2005. Collins eXchange combines Connexion’s broadband service with the antenna and signal processing technology of the avionics company’s a new Tailwind 500 multiregion direct broadcast satellite TV system. The conectivity system will integrate with the Collins Airshow 21 cabin electronics suite. Connexion broadband connectivity will be introduced to the air transport market by Lufthansa German Airlines, which plans the first commercial flight with the service on March 17, 2004. Visit www.rockwellcollins.com and www.connexionbyboeing.com.

ATOP Accepted

Lockheed Martin has achieved government acceptance of Build 1 for the new system to control air traffic over U.S. oceanic airspace. The Advanced Technologies and Oceanic Procedures (ATOP) system is to replace existing systems and procedures responsible for aircraft separation over the oceans. Visit www.lmco.com.

New ARINC Facility

ARINC Direct has relocated the former instrument repair operations of Wintermute Aviation, Marietta, Ga., to Colorado Springs. The new instrument center triples the space of the previous facility. Visit www.arinc.com.

S-92 Flight Control System

BAE Systems’ Aerospace Controls unit will develop and manufacture a fly-by-wire flight control system for Sikorsky’s S-92 medium-lift helicopter and the H-92 Superhawk military derivative. The fly-by-wire system will weigh far less than the conventional mechanical control systems used in most helicopters, according to BAE, and will decrease overall life-cycle operating and maintenance costs. Under the arrangement with Sikorsky, BAE Systems also becomes the airframer’s preferred supplier for future fly-by-wire systems. The S-92 and H-92 fly-by-wire flight control systems will include a flight control computer, two pilot control sticks and sensors for processing pitch, roll and yaw data. BAE also provides fly-by-wire systems for the RAH-66 Comanche, the C-17, F/A-18, JAS 39 Gripen and the Boeing 777 commercial airliner. Visit www.baesystems.com

Boeing-AFI Components Program

Boeing Commercial Aviation Services and Air France Industries (AFI) have set up a B777 Component Services Program to provide airlines worldwide fast parts access. Air Austral already has signed up for the new service. Airlines could save as much as 30 percent of their component repair and inventory costs from participation in the program, the offerors estimate. Under the program a replacement part will be sent out within one day of receiving the order. Boeing or AFI then will return the faulty unit to airworthy condition, upgrade it to reflect the latest design changes and return it to an exchange inventory pool. Customers sign up for a 10-year period, paying a per-flight-hour rate that covers the potential exchange of about 300 different line replaceable units (LRUs). Visit www.boeing.com and http://airfranceindustries.airfrance.com.

Thales ATM in Mexico

An approach air traffic control system provided by Thales Air Traffic Management (ATM), has become operational at the Leon/El Bajio Airport at Guanajuato, Mexico. The system is based on the Thales ATM’s Eurocat Control Center system and MSSR 970 Mode S monopulse secondary surveillance radar. The approach control center has been integrated into a network of 12 control centers through a private data exchange network. All 12 centers use the ATM Eurocat ATC system. Controllers will have advanced tools, such as flight plan and alerts processing. Visit www.thales.atm.com.

Rockwell Collins/Air China

Air China has chosen Rockwell Collins to provide avionics for 20 new Airbus A319s, with an option for 10 more aircraft. Air China has selected the GLU-920 multimode receiver and the WXR-2100 MultiScan weather radar, as well as the ADF-900 automatic direction finder, DME-900 radio, HFS-900D HF system, CPL-920D coupling unit, LRA-900 low-range radio altimeter, TPR-901 transponder, VOR-900 radio, VHF-920 VHF transceiver and SAT-2000 Aero-I satcom system. Visit www.rockwellcollins.com.

Tenzing for Bizjets

Tenzing has announced an in-flight e-mail offering tailored to the business jet market. The product will be based on Tenzing’s commercial aviation system, which is on six airlines and hundreds of aircraft worldwide. Visit www.tenzing.com.

P-3 Horsepower Indicators

Innovative Solutions and Support (IS&S) will replace the horsepower indicators on the U.S. Navy’s P-3 Orion anti-submarine warfare aircraft under a "quick response" contract valued at more than $2 million. Visit www.innovative-ss.com.

F-35 Cable Assemblies

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics has tapped Smiths Group’s Interconnect subsidiary to provide airborne cable assemblies for the Joint Strike Fighter, an award potentially worth more than $500 million over the life of the program. Visit www.smiths-group.com.

Midcoast Satcom STC

The Federal Aviation Administration has awarded Midcoast Aviation a supplemental type certificate for the installation of dual Honeywell MCS-6000+ satcom systems on Gulfstream V aircraft. Visit www.midcoastaviation.com.

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