Pilatus Approves Sherwin-Williams Aerospace Coatings

Sherwin-Williams Aerospace Coatings exterior systems are now qualified by international airplane manufacturer Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. With a wide variety of topcoat products and systems now approved to the Pilatus PMS0600-52-01 standard, Pilatus gains multiple options for how it can process exterior colors and design schemes on its aircraft.

Sherwin-Williams products that are now qualified for all Pilatus aircraft include:
• Chrome Hazard Free Quick Dry Epoxy Primer CM0483712
• Chrome Hazard Free Epoxy Primer/Surfacer CM0481968
• Jet Glo Express 840-Series Colors
• SKYscapes Next Generation Basecoat Solid Colors
• SKYscapes Next Generation Basecoat Mica Colors
• Acry Glo Conventional CM0571-Series Solid Colors
• Acry Glo Conventional CM0571-Series Metallic Colors
• SKYscapes Clearcoat CM0850180

“Working closely with Pilatus to meet its stringent processing and control standards, we are excited to provide exterior coating systems that will be an integral part of their high performing aircraft,” says Pete Willman, Sherwin-Williams global senior director for Aerospace Coatings. “Today’s aviation coatings specifiers and painters rely on Sherwin-Williams to provide quality coating systems and technical support throughout the global aviation marketplace.”

Sherwin-Williams makes exterior and interior coatings that deliver custom solutions for commercial, general aviation and military aircraft, including a full range of specialized livery color options for an outstanding, durable finish. Its products and systems undergo extensive testing to demonstrate they will deliver a lasting protective coating for any aircraft in a commercial fleet or private owner and have earned numerous AMS 3095 certification and aircraft OEM approvals.

Airforms Donates New Baffle Kit to AOPA Sweepstakes Airplane

Airforms, Inc. has donated a baffle kit to the AOPA Sweepstakes Aircraft. The Grumman AA5B Tiger selected for the Sweepstakes, is being powered by a Lycoming 0-360 zero-time, factory rebuilt engine. The new set of baffles designed for that engine has already been mounted by JA Air Center in Sugar Grove, IL. Baffle kits, with good seals, are essential for proper engine cooling.

Airforms, Inc. is the leading manufacturer of new engine baffle kits, having shipped over 5,000 kits for over 60 certified aircraft models. For more information on baffle kits and other parts, visit Airforms.biz or call 1-907-357-8244.

The AOPA Sweepstakes program is open to anyone holding at least a student pilot certificate and having reached the age of 19. All AOPA members are automatically entered for the drawing which will take place on May 20, 2022. To learn more visit AOPA.org/sweeps.

Marshall U. Breaks Ground on Aviation Maintenance Facilities

Officials with Marshall University and Mountwest Community & Technical College, along with the Robert C. Byrd Institute (RCBI), ceremonially broke ground at Huntington Tri-State Airport for their joint Aviation Maintenance Technology (AMT) program at the end of March.

Facilities construction for the new program includes renovations to an existing hangar, as well as a makeover for an old armory at Tri-State that will house laboratory and classroom space. Total renovation cost is $2.7 million.

The event was attended by federal, state and local officials, as well as aviation industry partners including Delta Air Lines, which announced the program would receive Delta Education support.

Currently under review by the Federal Aviation Administration and the Higher Learning Commission, the program is set to welcome students in spring 2022 and will feature hands-on instruction for a career field that is forecast to grow at a high rate in coming years.

“Today is an exciting day for Marshall University and our region,” said Dr. Jerome A. Gilbert, president of Marshall. “This incredible collaboration, involving multiple partners, has allowed the AMT program to take flight. Marshall is proud to participate in relationships that work across the economic spectrum and lead to opportunities for our great state and the entire region. I also want to thank Mike Sellards for his leadership at Mountwest throughout this process.”

Thought to be the first of its kind in West Virginia, the joint program between Marshall and Mountwest will educate students in 18-24 months and include opportunities to earn FAA certifications.

Michael Sellards, interim president of Mountwest, said he is looking forward to the program opening.

“Mountwest will enroll the students, provide financial aid opportunities, and lend student advising and academic support while working directly with Marshall University on student success,” Sellards said.

Charlotte Weber, RCBI director and CEO and vice president for federal programs at Marshall, said the process of navigating industry standards and working with federal and state agencies has culminated in what is expected to be a premier program.

“Marshall and Mountwest have truly worked with dozens of partners and agencies to make this program a reality,” Weber said. “We have a few more final details to work out but are focused on opening the doors in just about a year.”

The program’s curriculum will include traditional lectures as well as hands-on instruction at Tri-State Airport, where airport director Brent Brown says the affiliation with the AMT program will serve as a catalyst for future aviation development.

“I’m hopeful the location of the aviation maintenance program here at Tri-State will pave the way for other companies to position their operations here,” Brown said.

The partnership in aviation maintenance is just one of Marshall’s newest programs in aviation.  A four-year degree, educating and training pilots for fixed-wing aircraft, is moving forward in cooperation with Yeager Airport in Charleston.

Air Plains Services Returns to In-Person Exhibit at AOPA Aviator Showcases

General aviation engine and avionics upgrades specialist Air Plains Services announced it plans to exhibit at both AOPA Aviator Showcase events later this year.

The events, scheduled for August 27 in Manassas. Virginia, and October 1 in Fort Worth, Texas, will feature aircraft sales displays, technology-related seminars, and a large exhibit hall with product displays. AOPA has worked to ensure the events align with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“We are so excited to be getting back to face-to-face interaction with our customers,” said Katie Church, head of marketing at Air Plains. “We’ve been very lucky to have kept a steady workload the past year, but we really miss being around our fellow aviators at events like this.

“We’ve added new products over the past year and we’re eager to show off our expanding product line to new and current customers alike,” Church said.

The most popular new product is the Lycoming drop-in electronic ignition system for the Air Plains 180hp engine upgrade for Cessna 172s.  The Lycoming EIS has no mechanical parts that wear and features all solid-state electronics providing a 2,400-hour operating service time and a more consistent spark with no inspections, no rebuilds, no overhauls.

Air Plains also recently added an STC for the new Hartzell Trailblazer propeller for its 300hp engine upgrade operators.  The swept-tip, scimitar shaped airfoil is designed for optimal take-off acceleration and climb performance and is designed and constructed to perform well in demanding backcountry operations. The Trailblazer is approved for use with wheels, floats, and skis.

The company also added Alpha Systems AOA stand-alone angle of attack systems to its line of avionics that includes Dynon, Guardian and BendixKing (including TruTrak), Avidyne, Genesys, Appareo, L3 and Aspen products.