Briefs From The Singapore Airshow—Eve Of The Show
China Airlines and Tigerair Taiwan Join Collins' FlightSense Program
On the eve of the Singapore Airshow, Collins Aerospace has announced that China Airways and its low-cost subsidiary, Tigerair Taiwan, have joined the company's FlightSense predictive maintenance program. Collins will carry out engine accessory repair services for the Pratt & Whitney geared turbofans on 25 China Airways Airbus A321neo aircraft and 15 Tigerair A320neos, as well as spares support for the Tigerair powerplants. Collins has worked with China Airways and Tigerair before, but its president of power and controls, Henry Brooks, says the contract "represents our biggest, most comprehensive agreement with the airlines to date."
Diehl Displays Ground-Launched IRIS-T
Diehl's defense division's presence at the Singapore Airshow includes models of the ground-launched version of its Infrared Imaging System Tail/Thrust vector controlled (IRIS-T) infrared seeker missile. The SLM (surface-launched medium-range) variant successfully completed a number of test firings in December, and is capable of longer-range interceptions than the tactical IRIS-T SL that has been in use with the German military since 2017. The IRIS-T was originally developed as a European replacement for the AIM-9 Sidewinder. The Royal Thai Air Force uses IRIS-T on its Saab Gripens, and it has also been selected as a short-range weapon for South Korea's KF-21 program.
Black Diamond Becomes Bell's Second Indonesian AMC
Black Diamond Heliaero (BDH) has been appointed as an authorized maintenance center (AMC) by Bell Textron. Black Diamond becomes Bell's second AMC in Indonesia, and will provide maintenance, repair and overhaul services for the 412 and 505 helicopters. The Jakarta-based company was authorized as an approved repair station for military aircraft by the Indonesian Military Airworthiness Authority last May. "The demand for helicopter operations and services in Indonesia continues to rise," says Karina Kasih, BDH's president, "and our aim is to provide the high-quality service and support that Bell operators in Indonesia have come to expect."
U.S. Air Force Clears BriteCloud for Operational Testing on F-16s
The 218 variant of the BriteCloud expendable active decoy has been cleared for operational testing on the F-16, developer Leonardo has announced. The approval is one of the final stages in the U.S. Defense Department's Foreign Comparative Testing program, under which the UK-developed system is being evaluated ahead of potential U.S. procurement. The programmable rounds produce a radio frequency signal that fools missile-seeker systems into targeting the decoy rather than the aircraft. The 218 variant fits the dispensers standard on F-series fighters and successful completion of the U.S. Air Force tests is expected to increase interest from other F-16 user nations.
Expanded Eaton Showcases New Capabilities
The Singapore Airshow marks the first major international aerospace event power-management company Eaton has exhibited at since it completed the acquisition of air-to-air refueling specialists Cobham Mission Systems early last year. The company also bought French electrical interconnect solutions provider Souriau-Sunbank in 2019, so it has significantly strengthened its position in the aerospace electrical systems marketplace. Its Aerospace Group's managing director for the Asia-Pacific region, Desmond Goh, says the company will also be highlighting an expanded Singaporean aftermarket and MRO capability during the show.
Elettronica Offers Self-Protection Suite to Asia-Pacific Air Forces
As air defense systems' capabilities increase and anti-access/area denial strategies proliferate, the dangers for military aircraft are rising. Italian defense electronics specialist Elettronica says this is particularly true in the Asia-Pacific region, and it is using its presence at the Singapore Airshow to show how its suite of electronic warfare (EW) defensive systems can protect against these emergent and evolving threats. Modular elements such as the Edge jammer pod, ELT/160 radar warning receiver and Virgilius EW system are based around an open architecture so can be installed in different configurations and are suitable for fielding on helicopters, tankers and transport aircraft as well as fighters.
Bell Confirms Sale of First Two 505s to Bangladesh
The Ad-din Foundation, a nonprofit that operates eight hospitals, several medical colleges and clinics and a medical technology institute in Bangladesh, has bought two Bell 505 helicopters to use for patient transfers, medevac missions and corporate transport. The aircraft will be the first two examples of the type to be operated in the country. The sale shows that "organizations globally recognize the flexibility and efficiency that the Bell 505 can bring," says Lane Evans, Bell's 505 sales director. Bell has also delivered the 10th 429 helicopter to an undisclosed corporate customer in the Philippines. In January, Bell announced that the global 429 fleet had surpassed 500,000 flight hours.