July 15, 2014
Integrates Seamlessly with Garmin G1000H Avionics
Farnborough, England (July 15, 2014) – Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company (NYSE: TXT), has announced a new autopilot kit designed specifically to integrate with the Garmin G1000H avionics suite in the Bell 407GX. The option is currently available as a kit for the Bell 407GX in the U.S. and Canadian markets directly through Bell Helicopter and has been certified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA) for VFR (visual flight rule) operations. It features two-axis functionality with cyclic force trim and a Stability and Command Augmentation System (SCAS) available at all speeds with altitude and heading preselects. It can also be commanded to maintain either heading and altitude or navigation course and altitude. Additionally, a Go-Around mode can be activated by a single switch to provide automatic attitude leveling and transition to climb.
“The autopilot option is a logical extension of the fully-integrated glass cockpit offered in the Bell 407GX,” said Danny Maldonado, Bell Helicopter’s executive vice president of commercial sales and marketing. “We wanted to provide a product that is not only compatible with the Garmin system, but also make sure that operators could easily integrate and continue to get the best safety, performance and reliability out of their aircraft.”
The autopilot system, which is derived from the Bell 429 digital automatic flight control system, integrates with the Garmin G-1000H’s navigation modes and display and also integrates audio for caution alerts and mode annunciations. It is also compatible with a night vision imaging system (NVIS) and automatically disengages during heavy turbulence or extreme flight altitudes.
TRU Simulation + Training and Bell Helicopter Announce Collaboration to Build Bell 525 Full Flight Simulator
July 15, 2014
FARNBOROUGH INTERNATIONAL AIR SHOW, ENGLAND (July 15, 2014) – Bell Helicopter and TRU Simulation + Training (TRU), both Textron Inc. companies, (NYSE: TXT), announced an agreement for TRU to complete the design, development, manufacturing, installation, testing and certification of the Bell 525 Level D Full Flight Simulator (FFS).
The FFS will be certified to FAA Level D, as well as EASA/JAA Level D. TRU will employ its ODYSSEY™ H FFS simulator product, which utilizes TRU’s state-of-the-art Ultra High Definition Visual System with 240 degree horizontal by 80 degree vertical field of view Visual Display, in the design and development of the Bell 525 FFS. The ODYSSEY H is capable of meeting EASA and FAA Level D helicopter certifications. The simulator is designed especially for the unique training requirements and needs of the helicopter pilot.
“Our company includes service as a trusted high fidelity rotorcraft simulation and training partner to the military for more than two decades,” explained TRU Simulation + Training President and CEO Jim Takats. “It’s exciting for our team to apply that expertise to the civil market by meeting the training needs of operators of this game-changing Bell Helicopter platform.”
TRU will use the Bell 525 design and components to develop and deliver a flight compartment which is an exact duplicate of the Bell 525 cockpit, forward of the anti-torque pedals to aft of the pilots’ seats. All controls, panels, instruments, avionics, equipment and furnishings will be identical in appearance, feel, location and operation to those of the actual aircraft. It will respond exactly like the aircraft in all flight conditions, as well as accurately simulate instrument readings and malfunctions and enable them to be addressed through normal and emergency procedures.
“We are pleased to be collaborating with TRU in the development and production of the Bell 525 FFS,” said Eric Cardinali, executive vice president, Bell Helicopter Customer Support and Services. “Their expertise in aviation simulation and training solutions is a perfect complement to Bell Helicopter’s own industry-leading training capabilities.”
The simulator will be built at TRU’s facility in Tampa, Fla., and is expected to be fully operational in Q1 2016, to coincide with the certification timeline for the actual aircraft.
“We have kept the customer in mind throughout the FFS development process,” continued Cardinali. “The timing of the simulator installation and certification is such that operators can enroll in training and be certified to fly the aircraft by the time they take delivery.”
TRU Simulation + Training was formed in April out of three legacy companies – Mechtronix Inc. and OPINICUS Corporation that were acquired by Textron late last year, and a portion of the former AAI Logistics & Technical Services.
July 14, 2014
INAER France to operate Bell 429 in EMS Configuration
Farnborough, England (July 14, 2014) – Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company (NYSE: TXT), announced today a signed purchase agreement with INAER France an Avincis Group operator for a Bell 429 in Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) configuration. The aircraft, the first Bell 429 sold in France, will be equipped with a fully customized EMS interior and state-of-the-art avionics. INAER will take delivery of the aircraft in 2014, which will support medical rescue missions in the West region of France.
“Medical missions are very demanding and require modern aircraft and the highest standards of safety,” said Martin Whittaker, Director of Fleet & Engineering at Avincis. “The Bell 429’s advanced technology and performance will allow us to provide safe and rapid transport to those most in need of care.”
“We are thrilled to introduce the Bell 429 to France with long-time customer INAER,” said Patrick Moulay, Bell Helicopter’s managing director for Europe. “The Bell 429 is the most modern light-twin helicopter available and as customers have realized the full capabilities of this amazing aircraft, our installed base in Europe has grown to more than 40 Bell 429s. It continues to gain popularity with HEMS and parapublic operators across the region.”
INAER France is a leader in HEMS rescue, with almost 20 years of operating aerial surveillance assistance and parapublic missions. In addition, INEAR France provides aircraft maintenance and pilot type ratings.
The Bell 429 is the only light twin-engine helicopter on the market with true two-litter capability, featuring enough cabin space for two medical attendants and two crew members. The Bell 429 also offers exceptional flight performance with a fully integrated glass cockpit, advanced drive system and best-in-class WAAS navigation and IFR capability. Additional safety features include a collective mounted throttle, damage tolerant hub and rotor system, and energy attenuating seats. It is the first helicopter certified through the MSG-3 process, resulting in reduced maintenance costs for operators. The Bell 429 also features a spacious cabin and extra large 60 inch side doors, as well as Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) capability certified for single or dual pilot operations.
June 11, 2014
Nicole Alexander Stephanie Harder
Citation Sovereign+ business jet receives EASA certification
WICHITA, Kan., June 10, 2014 – Cessna Aircraft Company, a subsidiary of Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. company (NYSE:TXT), today announced the completion of European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) certification of Cessna’s Citation Sovereign+ business jet. The Citation Sovereign+ features enhanced climb performance and range, along with Garmin’s G5000 avionics. The aircraft recently completed a successful demonstration tour in Europe, where it debuted last month at the 2014 European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE) in Switzerland.
“The Citation Sovereign+ is a great fit for the European market with its non-stop range between London and the United States or the Middle East, and all European city pairs,” said Chris Hearne, vice president, Jets. “We have a number of European customers ready to take delivery of their aircraft, and with EASA certification we can now get the Sovereign+ into the marketplace. Customers are responding positively to the new Garmin avionics and the many other interior and exterior features that allow this aircraft to fly farther, smarter and more comfortably than before.”
Featuring winglets and the new Pratt & Whitney Canada PW306D engines providing 5907 pounds of thrust, the Citation Sovereign+ has a range of 3,188 nautical miles (5,904 km), a top speed of 460 knots (529 miles per hour) and a direct climb to 45,000 feet.
The new cockpit in the Sovereign+ is designed around the Cessna Intrinzic Flight Deck powered by Garmin G5000 avionics. An integrated, workload-reducing auto throttle system streamlines the pilots’ tasks. With Cessna’s Clairity cabin management system and redesigned interior options, the Sovereign+ features the longest and most comfortable cabin in its class with a max seating configuration for up to 12 passengers. The Clairity system allows passengers to remain connected in-flight through the integration of smartphones and tablets, along with an airborne Internet system.
May 19, 2014
GENEVA, SWITZERLAND (May 19, 2014) – Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company (NYSE: TXT), has announced its plans for the 14th annual European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition, EBACE, in Geneva, Switzerland, held May 20 to May 22. The Company will showcase its latest commercial product offerings including the Bell 505 Jet Ranger X™ aircraft mockup and Macaer’s new VVIP Bell 429 cabin mock up. In addition, a customer-owned Bell 429 aircraft in corporate configuration will be on display.
“EBACE is a great opportunity to expand our presence in Europe and connect with our customers,” said Patrick Moulay, Bell Helicopter’s managing director in Europe. “We have been working with our customers to advance and modernize our commercial product line. The Bell 505 Jet Ranger X on display is designed to specifications our customers told us are most important at a competitive price.”
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 429 also offers exceptional flight performance with a fully integrated glass cockpit, advanced drive system and best-in-class WAAS navigation and IFR capability. Additional safety features include a collective mounted throttle, damage tolerant hub and rotor system, and energy attenuating seats. It is the first helicopter certified through the MSG-3 process, resulting in reduced maintenance costs for operators. Passengers will take advantage of the Bell 429’spacious cabin and extra large 60 inch side doors, as well as Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) capability certified for single or dual pilot operations to better fulfill their mission.
Macaer Aviation Group has created a state-of-the-art VVIP interior for the Bell 429 that can be customized to accommodate a range of customer desires. With a variety of seating configurations possible, operators can match their own individual taste. Macaer’s specialty custom interior incorporates a noise abatement system called SILENS™, and an In-Flight Entertainment Enhanced Lounge (I-FEEL), that provides a fully customized interactive touch screen based entertainment management system.
Bell Helicopter remains focused on providing world-class support and service to its European customer base. Currently, Bell has 15 independent representatives and distributors in region and continues to grow. 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.
April 16, 2014
Fort Lauderdale, FL – Banyan Air Service based at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport recently completed the installation of a Dual Garmin 600 Glass Cockpit Upgrade on a Pilatus PC-12. The project also included a Garmin GTN-750, GTN-650, GMA-350, and Dual GTX-330 transponders. The installations were performed utilizing both Garmin and Pilatus STCs.
The Garmin dual G600 upgrade from Pilatus has provided one of the best Glass Cockpit modernization paths for the legacy Pilatus PC-12 aircraft on the market today. “By incorporating Synthetic Vision (SVT), radar display on the MFD, TAWS-B, and angle of attack display – Banyan has provided this operator with a fresh, new, and modern look for the aircraft,” says Paul Rose, Banyan vice president of technical sales.
The GTN series includes new “touch” technology providing a whole new level of efficiency and safety for the cockpit. This upgrade brings full LPV approach capability to the cockpit at the touch of a finger.
Banyan also added dual fully “ADS-B out” compliant GTX-330(ES) transponders. This Pilatus is now equipped to meet the challenging demands of ADS-B and other future mandates.
The addition of the digital 3-D audio panel (GMA-350) which when interfaced with the Garmin GTN-750 provides 3-D audio. This is the clearest audio anywhere, and includes superb audio isolation and “talk Command” capability.
“When the customer requested options for a modern and more technologically advanced cockpit, both Banyan and Garmin delivered,” says Rose.
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.
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.
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.
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.