Independent Falcon Aircraft Operators Association Triples Membership in the Last Three Months

The Independent Falcon Aircraft Operators Association (IFAOA), formerly the Falcon Jet Association, has gained an additional 55 members since its soft launch in September.

The IFAOA, founded by Dallas-based aviation entrepreneur Sean Lynch, creates community for Falcon aircraft owners and operators through in-person and on-line interaction and connects them to resources who can assist them in operating their aircraft economically for years to come.

“We knew that Falcon owners and operators were particularly proud of their aircraft and were seeking opportunities to exchange information, and based on how quickly the IFAOA is growing, we were right. We have signed up 55 members since our soft launch in mid-September, and they operate Falcon 10s, 50s, 900s and 2000s,” said Sean Lynch, group organizer.

Interested owner/operators and sponsors can join the IFAOA at www.independentfalconaircraft.com.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

The IFAOA also has secured its maximum of five platinum sponsors: Aviation Partners, Inc; Duncan Aviation; Engine Assurance Program; StandardAero and West Star Aviation. To date, two of five gold sponsors, Marklyn Jet Spares and VisionSafe, have committed as well.

“We are onto something exciting here,” added Lynch. “We encourage our members to chat in the forums on the website and we plan to organize several in-person events in 2022.”

The new association will continue to develop as interest grows. In this first phase, it is building a robust on-line presence. When COVID concerns lessen, it plans to hold gatherings at larger events like regional forums and conventions. It ultimately hopes to evolve into its own destination event featuring fly-ins with a static display, breakout sessions and sponsor exhibits.

As a courtesy to Dassault Falcon Jet, the organization’s name was changed from Falcon Jet Association to Independent Falcon Aircraft Operators Association to emphasize the fact that it is an independent association.

AvAir Achieved Impressive Growth & Milestones in 2021

Aviation aftermarket solutions provider, AvAir, reports continued growth and says they have reached new milestones in 2021.

Early in the year, the company earned the No. 1 position on Airline Economics’ Aviation 100 “Parts Supplier of the Year” rankings. This ranking is judged on several criteria including parts stocked, clients, number of employees – all areas that AvAir continued to focus on throughout the year. Mike Bianco, CEO of AvAir also secured a place on the prestigious “CEO of the Year” rankings by Airline Economics’ Aviation 100 awards.

Five strategic partnerships that encompassed both part acquisitions and asset management were finalized and put into place this year including one with GE Aviation Materials managing nearly 70,000 components. 

Additionally, AvAir celebrated its one-year anniversary of the Dublin, Ireland office. This facility received its customs warehouse accreditation from Irish Tax and Customs. This status allows the company to expedite the process of receiving and storing parts it acquires, continuing to save clients both time and money. In the last year, the facility has experienced significant growth with not only staff, but also in high-quality, in demand inventory.  

Twelve new staff members joined the company in a variety of roles in both the Arizona and Ireland offices. Inc. 5000 also recognized AvAir in 2021 in its “Fastest Growing Companies in America” list for the fourth year. AvAir’s three-year revenue growth earned the company a ranking of 4683 out of 5000 of the fastest growing companies in the nation. Inc. also named AvAir to its 2021 Best in Business List in the Logistics and Transportation Category.

“I am incredibly proud of the team at AvAir and all that we have accomplished this year,” said Mike Bianco CEO of AvAir. “Success is a marathon not a sprint and reflecting on the hard work and strategic partnerships we have built this past year and continue to work on, shows that AvAir is a leader in the aviation aftermarket industry. I look forward to more growth next year.”

ASI Aero forms Joint Venture with Initial Investment of $32 Million

Aeronautical Support International (ASI Aero) has announced the formation of Team Aero Partners to target investments in aviation commercial assets to support the Used Serviceable Material (USM) and “Green-Time” aircraft engine leasing markets.  ASI Aero entered into this joint venture agreement with a New York-based private capital partner.

As the operating member ASI Aero will source engine assets for the JV and subsequently manage these assets through consignment programs. Team Aero Partners will initially dedicate $32 Million to the venture.

“This is a great opportunity for ASI Aero to increase our inventory and to support our Airline and MRO customers around the world as the market returns to pre-Covid levels. This also makes other pools of capital available to expand and to diversify our business,” said Dean Morgan, ASI Aero president.

Cementex Announces Belt Pouch Combinations

Cementex announces the availability of Cementex Belt Pouch Tool Combinations, featuring all tools designed for safe use in Arc Flash environments. With 13 different combinations to choose from, the company says there is an ideal Cementex Belt Pouch Combo for any technician.

All tools in the Cementex Belt Pouch Combos feature innovative Cementex double insulation technology. The double insulated tools feature a yellow warning layer underneath the outer orange layer; if the outside insulation is damaged, posing a safety risk, the yellow layer begins to show, and technicians can know that they must replace the tools.

The 13 different configurations of belt pouch and tool kits feature a wide range of tools, including Linesman’s universal crimping, needle nose, and diagonal cutting pliers, various sizes of Phillips, Robertson, and Cabinet screwdrivers, nut drivers, and various task-specialized tools. In addition, customized configurations are also available.

Cementex double insulated tools are tested to 10,000 VAC and rated for 1,000 VAC when working on or around live parts. The pliers comply with ASTM F1505 and IEC 60900 standards, and help meet the requirements of OSHA 1910.331-335, MFPA 70E, and CSA-Z462.

EDGE Partners with Sanad to Provide MRO Services for Rolls Royce Trent 700 Engines

EDGE Partners with Sanad to Provide MRO Services for Rolls Royce Trent 700 Engines

GAL, a regional provider of integrated aircraft sustainment solutions for military and civilian customers within EDGE Group, have signed an agreement for Sanad to provide Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engine maintenance services to support GAL’s Performance Based Logistics contract with UAE Air Force Air Defence (AFAD).

The agreement establishes a new foundation for the delivery of world-class MRO services for Rolls Royce Trent 700 engines that power the UAE’s Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) fleet. Through shared knowledge and a rich tradition in aviation excellence, GAL and Sanad will provide MRO support to service the engines, reducing current turnaround time and shop visit costs by eliminating the need to ship engines outside the UAE.

“We look forward to working with Sanad to facilitate ongoing growth across the UAE’s burgeoning aviation sector,” Khalid Al Breiki, president of Mission Support at EDGE, and managing director of GAL, said. “This is a strategically important partnership between two national entities which has great significance for indigenous future technologies, supporting local talent and capabilities and ultimately contributing to the UAE economy. As the region’s leading MRO provider, we continuously take pride in collaborations which may support the ongoing defence initiatives within AFAD and the UAE. Sanad’s contributions to GAL will be another key component in delivering cutting-edge maintenance capabilities within the region.”

Mansoor Janahi, deputy group CEO of Sanad, said, “As the latest milestone in Sanad’s long-standing MRO services journey, this agreement marks a major step in our strategic long-term collaboration with GAL and EDGE. Having established market-leading MRO expertise by servicing leading global OEMs and airlines, Sanad’s extensive engine MRO infrastructure and capabilities, including the unique capabilities that we have on Trent 700 for more than 10 years driven by local knowledge sharing and underpinned by a commitment to develop national talent — will serve as the foundation for this exciting new partnership.”

Sanad says they are currently the only independent Trent 700 MRO facility worldwide. Sanad works in partnership with major original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) including Rolls-Royce, GE Aviation and International Aero Engines and provides a variety of engine maintenance services across multiple major aircraft platforms, including Airbus and Boeing.

Regional Jet Center Selects Donecle’s Automatic Drone for Aircraft Inspections

Donecle announced that Regional Jet Center, the Embraer-specialized MRO, has selected their automated drone solution for performing aircraft visual inspections. The multi-year agreement covers the deployment and support of an automated drone solution and sets the baseline for a strong technical partnership between both companies.

Regional Jet Center is based at Schiphol Airport and performs extended line maintenance operations for all KLM Cityhopper aircraft as well as several other Embraer operators. The growing MRO has an ambitious roadmap to further digitalize and automate their operations, to which the Donecle solution will contribute.

“We have been looking into drone inspections for the past couple of years as we believe they have the potential to accelerate inspections and improve overall traceability,” said Michiel van der Eijk, managing director of Regional Jet Center, on the choice of Donecle’s solution. “We recently trialed Donecle’s drone system and were impressed by its capabilities. We are looking forwards to this partnership.”

The deployed system features fully automatic flight on all Embraer aircraft, with advanced image analysis and reporting software to accelerate all visual inspections, such as general visual inspections, lightning strike inspections, paint and placards inspections. The drone solution comes with a secured cloud platform for tracking data over time and providing digital twin models of the aircraft surface. This will allow for seamless integration with MRO software solutions such as AMOS from Swiss AviationSoftware Ltd as being used by the Regional Jet Center.

“We are extremely happy with our partnership with Regional Jet Center. Deploying our technology at Schiphol Airport is one thing, but starting the qualification of our tool on Embraer aircraft is clearly another. As RJC services over 55 Embraer aircrafts per year in brand new facilities with state-of-the-art tools and innovative teams, we have found the perfect partner for our first deployment on Embraer,” said Matthieu Claybrough, CEO of Donecle on the partnership.

Pratt & Whitney Develops Efficient Gas Turbine Technologies with NASA HyTEC Project

Pratt & Whitney will leverage its recently opened ceramic matrix composites (CMC) center of excellence in Carlsbad, California, and collaborate with Raytheon Technologies Research Center on the project. The technologies targeted by HyTEC include next generation CMC materials capable of operating at higher temperatures than current CMCs, environmental barrier coatings, and advanced cooling and aerodynamic approaches that will enable new component designs and efficiencies. By increasing the thermal efficiency of the high-pressure turbine, these technologies will contribute to greater fuel efficiency in future gas turbine propulsion systems.

“We are delighted to work with NASA on developing the next generation of more fuel efficient and low emission aircraft technologies,” said Geoff Hunt, senior vice president, Engineering and Technology, at Pratt & Whitney. “Advanced materials such as CMC vanes will enable greater thermal efficiencies and combined with today’s propulsive efficiency of the GTF engine architecture, will help make future aircraft propulsion systems even more sustainable.”

Collaboration between Pratt & Whitney and NASA has already led to several key advances in sustainable propulsion technology in recent decades, including low-pressure fan, low-emissions combustor and high-performance hot section. These collaborations have a vital role to play towards developing and maturing technologies that will ultimately help make aviation more sustainable environmentally and economically.

AMADA WELD TECH Announces High-Resolution MM-L300A Laser Weld Monitor

AMADA WELD TECH announced the new MM-L300A Laser Weld Monitor. The high-resolution, compact MM-L300A is designed to detect production errors such as gaps between parts, missing parts, over-penetration, incorrect focus, and cover gas absence, providing operators feedback on laser weld quality. The compact, lightweight unit supports laser welding technologies for spot or seam welds.

This high-accuracy monitor is ideal for process development and quality control applications of laser welding. The MM-L300A determines weld success by detecting and recording a thermal signal from the area of laser interaction and provides an output waveform around which limits (max/min or envelope) can be set. Once the limits are set, the unit compares a new weld waveform in real time to identify good or bad weld. Providing high temporal resolution—down to 1 microsecond—the MM-L300A with the SU-N300A dedicated thermal sensor enables precision monitoring of both CW and pulsed lasers.

The MM-L300A features easy-to-use software for simple sensor configuration, waveform envelope limit set-up, and real-time or saved waveform analysis on Windows® PCs. Plus, with machine-selectable setup schedules, the unit can monitor different welding conditions. For process design flexibility, this approximately 7 lb (3 kg) system reduces set-up space when integrated into a production line, and the sensor mounts either on the optical axis of the laser or in an off-axis position.

Meggitt Signs SMARTSupport Agreement with FL Technics

Meggitt has signed a three-year, multimillion euro SMARTSupport contract with FL Technics to supply MRO services for sensors, valves, actuators, and fire extinguishers to operators across Eastern Europe and the CIS. 

FL Technics is a part of the Avia Solutions Group, a global aerospace service provider with a vast network of subsidiary companies, including Jet Maintenance Solutions, who will also be taking part in related projects, and this agreement significantly extends the cooperation potential between the two companies,

“This latest contract further strengthens our partnership with FL Technics and opens up new opportunities for us in the Eastern European and Russian regions,” Stewart Watson, president of Meggitt’s Services & Support division said. “We are also delighted to welcome Jet Maintenance Solutions to our family of customers and hope to continue to build on our relationship with the prestigious Avia Solutions group of companies over the coming years.”

This new SMARTSupport contract is in addition to an existing agreement with FL Technics for the rest of Europe and extends Meggitt’s MRO service offering to better support the company’s growing customer base in Eastern Europe.

“The extension of the scope of our previous agreements demonstrates mutual trust and dedication towards our business relationship, that is now, safe to say, evolving into a full-scale partnership,” Zilvinas Lapinskas, CEO of FL Technics, and a board member of directors at Avia Solutions Group, said. “I am confident this will bring extended range of opportunities in the near-term and strengthen strategic cooperation.”  

Textron Aviation Expands Service Capabilities in Germany

Textron Aviation announced additional investments in its European service network, with an expansion of its Stuttgart line station facility becoming a satellite service center. The company is expanding its factory-direct service options at Stuttgart Airport delivering shorter downtime and increased flexibility to its customers with twice the amount of hangar space and the expert engineer team set to double in size. This added footprint and expertise at Stuttgart satellite station will now add service capabilities for the Beechcraft King Air series this fall, further enhancing its service offerings for more than 100 operators in Germany. 

“We have strategically enhanced our footprint and capabilities in Europe due to the growing demand for services to ensure access to factory-direct service and support to customers,” said Phil Jones, vice president, European Service Centers. “This new service center model allows us to provide additional factory-direct support and deliver expert care to our aircraft owners and operators, regardless of where they are in the world.” 

As a satellite service center, Textron says Stuttgart can provide the same scope of work as their factory-direct service centers but in a smaller capacity. In addition to Stuttgart, Textron Aviation continues to operate two additional line stations in Cannes and Geneva and five company-owned service centers located in Düsseldorf, Paris Le Bourget, Prague, Valencia, Zürich and Geneva.