Editor's Note

Industry Scan

By Frank Wolfe | April 1, 2013
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➤ Northrop Grumman announced a $71 million contract from the U.S. Navy to provide six Fire Scout unmanned helicopters, an add-on to the company’s current contract to produce 14 Fire Scouts for the Navy. The new contract is for the MQ-8C Fire Scout, which features increased range, endurance and payload capacity over the MQ-8B variant. Delivery of the first 14 Fire Scouts is scheduled to begin in 2014, and the Navy is planning to purchase a total of 30 unmanned helicopters, Northrop Grumman said.

➤ The U.S. Navy awarded General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems a $19.3 million contract to produce Type-3 advanced mission computers (AMC) for the F/A-18E/F and E/A-18G Super Hornet aircraft. General Dynamics has delivered F/A-18 advanced mission computers since 2002.

The AMC provides situational awareness and combat systems control to the flight crew. It can process high-speed data flows from the sensors; performs general purpose, input/output, video, voice and graphics processing; and is designed to operate in the extreme environmental conditions, the company said.

➤ South African Airways (SAA) received approval from the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) to launch Required Navigation Performance with Authorization Required (RNP AR) procedures at Cape Town International Airport.

Airbus ProSky subsidiary Quovadis, in collaboration with local air traffic control officials, assisted SAA in designing the new RNP AR procedures using visual tracks in and out of Cape Town that were already in use. The SACAA approval allows SAA to launch the first RNP AR procedures in Africa.

➤ The Airports Authority of India selected Honeywell’s SmartPath ground-based augmentation system as part of a pilot project to launch satellite-based approaches at Chennai International Airport. SmartPath will enable Chennai to support up to 26 separate approaches across four runways simultaneously, compared to traditional ILS that usually supports one approach at one end of a single runway, Honeywell said.

➤ Honeywell’s IntuVue 3-D Weather Radar Hazard Display Update V1.0 has been selected by Turkish carrier Pegasus Airlines. 

➤ Piper Aircraft has selected Garmin’s G1000 integrated flight deck for its twin-engine Seneca V model aircraft.

The G1000 integrates all primary flight information, navigation data, communications, terrain awareness, traffic, weather, and engine data on three 10.4-inch, high-resolution displays. The G1000’s Attitude and Heading Reference System provides digital output and referencing of the aircraft’s attitude, rate and acceleration data. The G1000 also incorporates a large moving map, and supports a wide array of safety enhancing features, including Synthetic Vision Technology, Terrain Awareness and Warning System, datalink weather and Garmin’s traffic awareness and collision avoidance systems.

➤ Rockwell Collins received a $3.2 million technology investment agreement from the Department of Defense (DoD) to continue the next phase of the low-cost military GPS program. DoD previously selected the company for the first phase of the program to develop the next generation military GPS selective availability anti-spoofing module, a small device that allows decryption of precision GPS coordinates.

➤ Boeing is launching its “Optimal Flight” program in collaboration with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, a total of 26 flights powered by alternative jet fuel sources and featuring technologies from Boeing.

The program will use a KLM Boeing 777-200 powered by sustainable aviation biofuel sourced from used cooking oil.

Boeing Research and Technology developed new flight services for the program that will use automation to integrate the dispatch and modified versions of the flight plan and performance data into the flight management computer. The air crew will be prompted with recommendations for speed variance based on
real-time weather conditions, Boeing said. The flights will fly from Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York

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