Mexican Navy places initial order for Beechcraft T-6C+ trainers

April 2, 2014

WICHITA, Kan., March 25, 2014 — Beechcraft Corporation, part of the Textron Aviation segment of Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT), announced today it has received an initial order from the Mexican Navy Secretaría de Marina (SEMAR) for two T-6C+ military trainers. This purchase represents the first step in modernizing the Mexican Navy’s fixed-wing aviation fleet and follows a recent expansion of the Mexican Air Force training fleet to include 12 T-6C+ aircraft. The Navy trainers are scheduled for delivery in the summer of 2014.

In addition to the aircraft, Beechcraft’s Global Mission Support organization is working on a second contract with SEMAR that is expected to include two years of parts support, training for pilots and mechanics, and the placement of Field Service Representatives who will provide technical expertise and training to maintenance personnel.

“We are pleased to expand the reach of the T-6C+ to a second military fleet customer in Mexico with this initial order from the Mexican Navy,” said Russ Bartlett, senior vice president, Defense. “SEMAR not only recognizes the value of a proven, reliable airframe with the T-6C+ in standing up its new training capability, but this selection also acknowledges the significant benefits our Global Mission Support team offers in providing on-the-ground service, support and training for the fielded aircraft.”

The T-6C+ features a hard-point wing, Heads-Up Display, Up-Front Control Panel, an integrated glass cockpit and an advanced Esterline CMC Cockpit 4000 avionics suite that greatly expands advanced training opportunities. The systems are integrated with a Hands-On Throttle and Stick (HOTAS), providing the student pilot and instructor with a simpler interface to the digital cockpit. The CMC Cockpit 4000 avionics suite is the first in its class to incorporate a fully integrated and FAA-certified dual FMS/GPS navigation suite that meets the required navigation performance standards for current worldwide airspace equipment. The open architecture design of the Cockpit 4000 provides the flexibility to expand capabilities and continuously meet current and future training needs.

In addition to accommodating instruction in instrument flight procedures and basic aerial maneuvers, the T-6 delivers world-class training capability that is appropriate for teaching the most basic introductory flight training tasks through the more challenging and complex advanced training missions that could previously be accomplished only in far more expensive jet aircraft. The T-6 has been used to train pilots, navigators, and weapons systems operators from more than 20 countries around the world. To date, Beechcraft has delivered more than 825 T-6 trainers, which have amassed more than 2.2 million flight hours.

New Alpine Edition from Cessna offers avionics, upgrades for Citation CJ2+

April 2, 2014

WICHITA, Kan., March 24, 2014 — Cessna Aircraft Company, part of the Textron Aviation segment of Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT), announced today an upgrade program for the company’s successful Citation CJ2+ business jet. The new Alpine Edition CJ2+ modification package from Cessna includes the installation of a Garmin G3000 avionics suite—making the jet compliant with Next Generation (NextGen) requirements. In addition to the avionics upgrade, the Alpine Edition CJ2+ features new pressurization and environmental systems, the latest diagnostics systems, and a redesigned cockpit.

Matt Wild, Cessna Alpine Edition program manager, says: “The Alpine Edition CJ2+ is just one more example of Cessna’s continued investment in its products and services. With customers responding very positively to Garmin G3000 avionics and its touch control interface, we developed this program centered around putting the G3000 along with other system updates on an existing CJ2+ aircraft. The engineering flight test program is underway, with certification expected this summer and deliveries to start soon after.”

In addition to the Garmin G3000 avionics suite, the Alpine Edition includes increased access to the cockpit with the removal of seven inches from the legacy pedestal, improved turbulence detecting weather radar, TCAS II, advanced Terrain Awareness Warning Systems (TAWS), a wireless media server, Garmin integrated cockpit and cabin Iridium phone, and high speed Internet capabilities from Aircell. The Alpine Edition CJ2+ package includes the installation of  automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) capabilities, bringing the aircraft in compliance with this aspect of NextGen air traffic control requirements. Alpine Edition will also offer exclusive exterior paint schemes and interior packages as optional upgrades.

Cessna supports customers with the world’s largest, most accessible service network and provides options and solutions that meet customer needs ranging from scheduled maintenance to a complete modification package. Cessna is offering the Alpine Edition modification at the company’s U.S. Citation Service Centers. The Alpine Edition for the CJ2+ is an example of Cessna identifying a customer need and responding with a cost-effective pathway towards sustainable value and long term success for its clients.

Cessna is collaborating with Duncan Aviation to obtain the necessary Supplemental Type Certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for the G3000 component of  this new upgrade.

Bell Helicopter Announces to Showcase Latest Commercial Product Offerings at FIDAE 2014

March 21, 2014

FORT WORTH, TEXAS (March 21, 2014) – Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company (NYSE: TXT), has announced its show plans for the 18th edition of the International Air and Space Fair, FIDAE 2014 in Santiago, Chile, March 25-30.  The company will showcase the Bell 407GT and Bell 429WLG, both introduced in 2013, in both static display as well as via demonstration flights. The newly introduced Bell 505 Jet Ranger X™ aircraft mockup will also be displayed in a full-size law enforcement configuration.
“FIDAE is consistently the leading aerospace and defense event in Latin America,” said Danny Maldonado, Bell Helicopter’s executive vice president of sales and marketing. “We have been working hard to advance and modernize our commercial product line and look forward to showing the audience how these new commercial products are helping Bell Helicopter continue to change the way the world flies.”
Bell Helicopter first entered the Latin America market more than 60 years ago, and today the region has a fleet size of more than 1,670 aircraft. In fact, in the last two years, more Bell helicopters were sold in Latin America than in any global region besides North America.
“Operators are looking for aircraft that provide superior performance, reliability, maneuverability and safety,” Maldonado said. “Our helicopters are ideally suited to the diverse climate and geography across Latin America and offer the performance, advanced technology, enhanced situational awareness, low maintenance and high value our customers are looking for.”
The newest member of Bell Helicopter’s family of helicopters, the Bell 505 Jet Ranger X is a customer-driven design, blending proven systems with advanced technology and a sleek, modern design. The Bell 505 places safety, performance and affordability at its forefront. The Garmin G1000H Integrated Avionics Suite provides pilots critical flight information at a glance to maximize situational awareness. Pilot workload is further reduced by the Turbomeca Arrius 2R engine with dual channel Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC). The Bell 505 features a high inertia rotor system delivering superior auto rotation capabilities. With the ideal combination of speed, range and useful load, the Jet Ranger X is designed to deliver best-in-class performance.

The Bell 407GT is the company’s armed version of the best-selling Bell 407GX, qualified for a range of weapons from light munitions to advanced laser-guided munitions. The state-of-the-art tactical light commercial helicopter brings together the Garmin G1000HTM flight deck with precision weapons capability. Standard specifications include an infrared camera system, weapons management system, universal weapons pylon, tactical radio suite, target sight system, sliding doors for rapid egress and ingress on both sides and high-visibility windows and door for the cockpit.

The Bell 429WLG can land in a larger number of environments and conditions, providing operators of all mission profiles additional flexibility. Its taxiing capability is ideal for both repositioning in limited spaces and situations that require ground taxi, such as positioning closer to fixed-base operators. These benefits mean that both flight crews and passengers can save time and effort getting where they need to go. The Bell 429WLG also has reduced drag due to the loss of skids and an increased cruise speed. The Bell 429 is approved to operate at an increased gross weight of 7,500 pounds (3,402 kilograms) in several Latin American countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico and Venezuela; while the Bell 429WLG is approved for gross weight increase in both Canada and Brazil, with other certifications currently in work.

In addition to providing customers with the products they want and need, Bell Helicopter remains focused on providing world-class support and service to its Latin America customer base. Currently, Bell has 19 independent representatives and distributors in the region and continues to grow its presence in Latin America. The company’s focus on its customers is a key differentiator from the competition, as evidenced by Bell Helicopter’s consistent number one ranking in Pro Pilot’s service and support rankings for the 20th consecutive year.
For more than 35 years, FIDAE has brought together experts from diverse industry sectors, including civil and commercial aviation, defense, aircraft maintenance, airport support services and equipment, space technology and homeland security. The Latin American trade show works to provide the perfect environment for meetings and collaborations among professionals from the varied fields in aerospace and defense.

Helibras begins deliveries of upgraded AS365 Panther K2 helicopters to the Brazilian Army

March 13, 2014

Airbus Helicopters’ enhanced version is the first to be fully certified in Brazil
Marignane, 13 March 2014 – The first two upgraded AS365 Panther K2 rotorcraft will be delivered this month by Airbus Helicopters’ Helibras subsidiary to the Brazilian Army Aviation Command (AvEx), providing a modernized platform with more power, updated avionics and increased mission capability.
These deliveries follow the signature in Brasília of an amendment standardizing the modifications introduced to the helicopter’s enhanced configuration – which will be assessed by AvEx’s various battalions during mission operations. Should these evaluations prove favorable, Helibras will continue modernizing the remaining 32 AS365 K Panthers in the Brazilian Army’s inventory through 2021.
Helibras’ Panther K2 is the first helicopter to be fully certified in Brazil by the country’s Aerospace Technology and Science Department (DCTA). It is a landmark achievement for the Itajubá, Brazil-based Helibras, as this particular version has been developed entirely in Brazil.
Featuring state-of-the-art equipment and systems, the Panther K2 upgrade will enable Brazil’s AS365s to remain operational for another 25 years. The contract value for modernizing all 34 Panthers in Brazilian Army service is 347 million Brazilian reais.
“The modernization of military aircraft such as the Panther K2 is taking place in fleets with hi-tech assets and a high purchase value, be they fleets of helicopters, airplanes or ships,” said Helibras CEO Eduardo Marson, who sees the upgrading of the Panthers as a strategic step forward in his company’s expansion program.
“This upgrade effort allows Helibras to gain expertise in the key technologies offered in high-performance aircraft types such as the Dauphin family – on which the Panther military helicopter is based – and opens the way for the development of new projects through the company’s engineering center,” he added. “The Super Puma and Cougar helicopters are examples of this, and just by introducing a process whereby old parts are replaced by more modern systems, we are able to extend their service life for 25 years at least.”
Helibras Manufacturing Vice President Richard Marelli said the company’s engineering center was responsible for the Panther K2’s preliminary and detailed designs for the enhancement. “As part of the process, a team of engineers and mechanics received on-the-job training at Airbus Helicopters with a view toward specialization in major operations,” he continued. “The program also included training for pilots and instructors.”
The Panther K2 has been fitted with new Arriel 2C2CG engines that deliver 40 percent more power, new engine fairings, a new glass cockpit with a 4-axis autopilot, new wiring and a cable-cutting device. In addition to night vision goggle-compatibility, the helicopter also features a new altimeter and weather radar, the latest navigation and communication radios and a new tail rotor – significantly improving performance and safety. These changes provide a helicopter with greater range, more speed and reduced pilot workload.
The Panther K2 has capacity for one or two pilots and 10 troops, a maximum takeoff weight of 4,300 kg., and a top speed of 175 kts. – which is increased from 150 kts. prior to its upgrade.

IMG_4117_© Copyright_Helibras_Marcio_Jumpei

ew Bell 412EPI Products Receive STC Approval – Available Through Aeronautical Accessories

March 6, 2014

FT. WORTH, TX  (March 4, 2014) – Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company (NYSE: TXT) announced it has received FAA supplemental type certificate (STC) approval for three new accessory options for the Bell 412EPI including a Cockpit Voice Flight Data Recorder (CV/FDR), Bell Helicopter Vibration Monitoring system (BHVM) and Helicopter Terrain Awareness System (HTAWS). All three Bell 412EPI STC-approved products are all available through the Aeronautical Accessories brand.

The CV/FDR is an “on-condition” line-replaceable unit that records both cockpit voice and flight data. The CV/FDR is capable of recording a minimum of 25 hours of flight data and two hours of audio. Flight data is recorded in flash memory and segregated from the cockpit voice data and may be downloaded to ground station equipment in approximately five minutes.

The new BHVM kit for the Bell 412EPI provides comprehensive airframe, rotor, engine and drive system vibration monitoring capability. Additionally, the system provides quick access aircraft data recording capability to support customer flight data monitoring (FDM) programs. The system is compatible with the new Bell 412EPI integrated avionics system.

For forward looking terrain and obstacle avoidance capability, the new Bell 412EPI Helicopter Terrain Awareness and Warning System (HTAWS) kit is now FAA approved and available. This kit has the Honeywell Mark XXII system which presents visual and aural signals to pilots in advance when potential hazards exist. The system is compatible with the new Bell 412EPI integrated avionics system.

“These three new products for the Bell 412EPI demonstrate Bell Helicopter’s continued commitment to developing parts and accessories that improve safety and maximize efficiency,” said Jennifer Lunceford, manager, Sales for Aeronautical Accessories. “We are pleased to add the newly approved kits to the ‘Safety and Mission’ section of the 2014 Aeronautical Accessories product catalog.”

Sikorsky S-92® helicopters to receive new Rockwell Collins display

February 28, 2014

Multi-Function Display provides growth path to synthetic vision, H-TAWS, and MultiScanTM  weather radar

ANAHEIM, Calif. (Feb. 25, 2014) – The Sikorsky S-92® helicopter will feature new Rockwell Collins MFD-268P2B Multi-Function Displays enabling growth to capabilities that will enhance situational awareness and flight safety. The new displays will be standard cockpit equipment for new aircraft delivered beginning in 2014.

“The new MFD-268P2B Multi-Function Display features the latest technology in advanced cockpit systems,” said Troy Brunk, vice president and general manager of Airborne Systems for Rockwell Collins. “The display has been completely redesigned to expand optical and processing performance, reduce acoustic noise levels and increase the level of reliability while providing growth for Next Generation airspace requirements.”

Benefits of the new MFD-268P2B include:

Expanded readability under all lighting conditions
Provides growth path to synthetic vision, H-TAWS and MultiScanTM weather radar
Enhanced color stability for high-angle, cross-cockpit viewing
Enhanced reliability through increased technology integration
Greater than 14 decibel reduction in acoustic noise
The MFD-268P2B system offers superior functionality, condensed packaging and is capable of displaying graphics and video on a high performance, color Active Matrix Liquid Crystal Display. This avionics-grade display is capable of a wide operating temperature range, providing superior optical performance designed for a wide viewing angle for excellent cross-cockpit viewing.

About Rockwell Collins
Rockwell Collins is a pioneer in the development and deployment of innovative communication and aviation electronic solutions for both commercial and government applications. Our expertise in flight deck avionics, cabin electronics, mission communications, simulation and training, and information management services is delivered by a global workforce, and a service and support network that crosses more than 150 countries.

Bombardier Learjet Receives FAA Certification for the Learjet 75 Aircraft

November 15, 2013

Learjet 75 aircraft granted full type certification from FAA on November 14, 2013.

MONTREAL, QUEBEC–(Marketwired – Nov. 15, 2013) – Bombardier Aerospace, the world’s leading business aircraft manufacturer, announced that Learjet has been awarded Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Certification for its Learjet 75 aircraft.

“We are delighted to have received FAA certification for the first Learjet 75 business jet”, said Ralph Acs, Vice-President and General Manager, Learjet, Bombardier Business Aircraft. “This jet is clearly a leader among its peers with its Bombardier Vision flight deck offering unmatched capability in its segment, the class-defining performance and efficiency improvements, as well as a completely new interior. This aircraft, along with its smaller sibling the Learjet 70 business jet, clearly have a bright future in business aviation.”

FAA certification for Learjet 75 aircraft was received on November 14, 2013. Certification and delivery efforts and activities are in progress for the Learjet 70 aircraft.


The aircraft has enhanced performance through an engine thrust increase with an improved Honeywell engine, offering improved takeoff field length performance over its predecessor. The new avionic system contributes to achieving weight savings and the new canted winglets improve aerodynamic efficiency. Overall, up to a nine per cent improvement in field performance under hot and high conditions and up to a four per cent improvement in fuel efficiency are expected.(i)


Based on the Learjet 85 aircraft interior design and technology, the Learjet 70 and Learjet 75 aircraft include: improved comfort and styling of the seats; cabin management system featuring individual touchscreen monitors with full audio and video control; LED lighting throughout the entire aircraft; a generous baggage suite and a spacious galley for optimized catering, work and storage space. The advanced connectivity options of the Learjet 70 and Learjet 75 aircraft ensures the highest levels of convenience.

Bombardier Vision Flight Deck

A breakthrough in business aviation, the Bombardier Vision Flight Deck is designed to deliver a completely new cockpit experience. By combining the best in technological advancements with superior design aesthetics, it provides pilots flying Bombardier’s Learjet 70 and Learjet 75 aircraft an unprecedented level of control and comfort. The Bombardier Vision Flight Deck for Learjet 70 and Learjet 75 aircraft features the fully integrated Garmin G5000 digital avionics suite, designed with leading edge technology and one of the most intuitive crew interfaces available.

Operating Costs

The aircraft will be supported by a maintenance program designed to allow customers to operate to a generous 600 flight hour fixed inspection interval at Bombardier’s growing worldwide Customer Services infrastructure. In addition, direct operating costs will be reduced as a result of performance efficiency gains.

Learjet 70 aircraft: The Learjet 70 aircraft will be able to achieve an exceptional range greater than 2,000 nautical miles at cruise speeds of up to Mach 0.81.(i) It will connect Chicago-San Juan and Toluca-Minneapolis non-stop with six passengers and two crew members.(i)

Learjet 75 aircraft: With a maximum range greater than 2,000 nautical miles at cruise speeds up to Mach 0.81, the Learjet 75 aircraft will be able to fly four passengers and two crew members non-stop from Los Angeles to Toronto and Mumbai to Bangkok.(i) Additionally, it will be able to handle a range close to 1,950 nautical miles with eight passengers.(i)

FAA verifies Citation X speed

November 1, 2013

WICHITA, Kan., Oct 31, 2013 – Cessna Aircraft Company, a Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT) company, recently concluded all high-speed certification flights with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on the new Citation X. This marks the completion of all testing requirements needed to validate the aircraft’s unmatched maximum operating speed of Mach 0.935 (617 mph, 536 ktas), solidifying the Citation X’s position as the fastest civilian aircraft in the world.

Michael Thacker, Cessna senior vice president of Engineering, said: “The high-speed testing of the new Citation X was a success. All responses from the high-speed certification testing were well within the expected performance envelope. While these are the results our engineers fully anticipated, this final round of testing went so smoothly the conditions were completed in fewer flights and hours than planned.”

The high-speed testing regimen includes handling qualities, stability and control in addition to maneuverability conditions at high speeds. The Citation X high-speed validation was accomplished as a result of collaboration with FAA pilots and Cessna’s Engineering Flight Test Team during the past weeks. Over 1,300 hours have been flown in the Citation X test program in preparation for certification, expected in the early part of 2014.

Brad Thress, Cessna senior vice president of Business Jets, said: “Our Citation X customers will be glad to know they will own the fastest civilian aircraft in the world. There is no quicker way to get from point A to point B than inside a Citation X.”

The Citation X has a range of 3,242 nm, a seating capacity for 9 people, and the cutting edge Garmin G5000 avionics package. Four intuitive, full-color touch-screen LCD control panels and three 14-inch high-resolution displays face the pilots upon entering the updated, ergonomic cockpit. Maximum altitude is 51,000 feet, giving the new Citation X the ability to fly above weather patterns and commercial traffic. Two FADEC-controlled Rolls-Royce AE3007C2 turbo fan engines provide passengers with the fastest way to travel non-stop from New York to London, Dubai to Singapore, or Panama City to Sao Paulo.

Turbomeca and Russian Helicopters sign a MoU on a new Maintenance Center

August 27, 2013

Bordes – Moscow / 27 August 2013 – Turbomeca (Safran) and Russian Helicopters (a subsidiary of Oboronprom, part of State Corporation Rostec) today announced that they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the opening of a new Maintenance Centre.
In the frame of this agreement, Russian Helicopters will provide maintenance Level 1 and 2 activities on Turbomeca engines operated by the Russian helicopter operators. The engines covered are the Arrius 2G1 and the Ardiden 3G, respectively powering the Ka-226T and the Ka-62 helicopters.
This Maintenance Center is part of a global common support strategy aimed at providing a highest level of support to all operators flying with Turbomeca engines in accordance with the best practices and standards.
The new Arrius 2G1 engine with performance in the 700 to 800 shp class, has been tailored to perfectly fit the Ka-226T. This new variant is a derivative engine from the existing Arrius 2, which has proven its durability and reliability worldwide with more than 3000 engines already delivered. To address the requirement of public transport, the Arrius 2G1, among other specific devices, is equipped with a FADEC controlling the power delivery to the helicopter. The engine has been certified in 2011.
Designed for 6 to 8 tonnes helicopters to achieve multiple missions, Ardiden 3 engines offer, under all weather conditions, the most increased performances in the range of the 1,750 to 2,000 shp power engines. The modular design and dual channel FADEC, make the Ardiden 3 highly reliable, with the benefit of low operating costs and an exceptional low fuel consumption (more than 10% less than the others engines in the same range). A contract for over 300 engines has already been signed. Ardiden 3G certification is expected in 2014.
The Ka-226T light multi-purpose helicopter may be operated in urban conditions for high-rise construction works, patrolling, as well as for police operations. Coaxial main rotor system ensures Ka-226T great load capacity and flight height advantages. The Ka-226T is capable of reaching higher altitudes than most other helicopters in its class. Thanks to its maximum climb rate of 10 m/s, low environmental impact and small sound signature, the Ka-226T can operate in various climactic conditions and landscapes, including urban conditions and built-up areas.
Built using new technologies and materials, the new Ka-62 is a single-rotor design, with an enclosed tail rotor and an airframe and propeller blades consisting of over 50% polymeric composite materials. The helicopter will also feature a glass cockpit, a five-blade rotor, secondary hydraulics circuit and energy-efficient wheeled landing gear. The Ka-62 is designed for cargo transportation, medevac and search-and rescue operations, and can also be used in the oil and gas sector and for corporate purposes.

Vector Aerospace/SECA sign Service Agreement with TAM EXECUTIVA

August 15, 2013

For Immediate Release – August 15, 2013

Toronto, ON –  Vector Aerospace (Vector – and SECA, a Vector Aerospace Company (SECA –; leading providers of aviation maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services are pleased to announce the signing of a Service Agreement with TAM EXECUTIVA, based in Sao Paulo, Brazil to perform engine repair, hot section inspections (HSI), testing, modification, overhaul services, and parts distribution on PT6A and JT15D Series Aircraft Gas Turbine Engines and to perform engine repair, Major Periodic Inspection (MPI), testing, modification, Core Zone Inspection (CZI) services, on TFE 731 Series Aircraft Gas Turbine Engines.

“This Service Agreement is important for Vector Aerospace and SECA, as it is an excellent opportunity for us to present our wide range of fixed-wing and helicopter MRO services within the Latin American market,” says Jeff Poirier, president of Vector Aerospace Engine Services – Atlantic.  “Our knowledgeable team of Sales and Customer Service specialists look forward to closely working with TAM EXECUTIVA  to provide superior service and support their specific repair, overhaul and fleet maintenance requirements.”

Jean-Jacques Reboul, president of SECA (Interim) says, “We look forward to working with TAM EXECUTIVA. It is an excellent opportunity to present our extensive portfolio of services including our GEMS (Global Engine Management Service) program; a combination of support and services aimed at addressing each and every  specific need of TAM EXECUTIVA.”

A combined comprehensive service portfolio from Vector Aerospace and SECA includes: Rolls-Royce M250; Rolls-Royce T56/501D; Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6T, PT6A, JT15D, PW100, PW305, PW307 and PW308A series engines;Turbomeca Arriel 1 and Arriel 2; General Electric T58 / CT58 and CT-7A / T700 engines; Honeywell TFE731 and Honeywell ALF 502/LF507 (all engine lines include complete test capability); dynamic components, full-service avionics capability; up to and including glass cockpit engineering, development and integration, complete aircraft rewires, as well as airframes and major inspections support for a variety of Eurocopter, Sikorsky, Boeing and AgustaWestland helicopter models.

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