General Electric and Honda form joint venture on very light jet engine

General Electric and Honda formally signed at the show to create the joint venture GE Honda Aero Engines to launch Honda's HF118 1,600lb-thrust turbofan for the emerging breed of very light business jets.

The company will be based in Cincinnati, Ohio and will work closely with GE and Honda Aero. GE forecasts demand for very light jets of some 200 a year by the end of the decade.

SAI unveils Skunk Works-designed quiet supersonic jet

Supersonic Aerospace International, the company revealed yesterday as being funded by Gulfstream founder Alan Paulson's son Michael, today revealed details of its design which was developed by Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works.

The proposed aircraft is a 132ft-long twin, carrying 8-12 passengers at up to M1.8 and as high as 60,000ft. Its designers believe they can reduce its sonic boom to about 1/100th of that of Concorde. The company hopes to build an international consortium to see the aircraft into production.

Cessna hopes for CJ3 certification this week

Cessna is hoping for certification of its new Citation CJ3 light jet before the end of the show – its seventh approval of the year. Describing the recovery in business as having "unprecedented momentum", CEO Jack Pelton said 2006 production was virtually sold out.

Learjet 45 gets London approval

Bombardier has won European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) certification for the Learjet 45 family to fly into London City Airport.

A service bulletin is available for Learjet 40, 45, and 45 XR aircraft registered in the European Union.

Under new ownership, Mooney surges ahead

Mooney Airplane Company, acquired by Allen Holding and Finance in June, is exhibiting at NBAA for the first time and reports third quarter sales more than three times last year's figure for the period.

It is pushing "Freedom Edition" versions of its Ovation2 GX and Bravo GX with a batch of additional options at special promotional prices.

Adam completes first production A500

Adam Aircraft completed the first A500 aircraft intended for customer delivery late last week, a few days after the Englewood, Colorado-based company received preliminary type authorisation.

Aircraft number 006 follows five prototypes and demonstrators of the all-composite, piston twin. Adam claims a backlog of 65 orders.

Eclipse resorts to building its own service network

Eclipse Aviation is to establish a network of seven service centres around the USA after finding existing maintenance repair and overhaul (MRO) providers ill-prepared for its Eclipse 500 very light jet.

CEO Vern Raburn says the general aviation MRO world is optimised for pistons and turboprops rather than jets. Entry into service is due in 2006.

Williams-powered Learjet 25 aims for second quarter certification

Oklahoma City-based Spirit Wing Aviation is aiming for supplementary type certification of its re-engined Learjet 25 in the second quarter of next year.

Its SpiritLear programme swaps the light jet's General Electric CJ610 turbofans for Williams FJ44s, increasing range by 70% to 1,700nm (3,150km), cutting fuel burn by more than 20%, and complying with Stage 3 noise rules.

Bombardier Flexjet claims sales upturn

Bombardier's Flexjet fractional jet business reports that sales of shares are up 50% this year, and claims to have gained 10 points market share increase as a result of introducing the Challenger 300 and Learjet 40.

President Michael McQuay says Flexjet has taken delivery of nine new aircraft in 2004 with six more to come.

Source: Flight International