The FAA awarded certified the Robinson Helicopter R66 Turbine this week and at the same time, it awarded the company a production certificate to begin deliveries.
The first delivery was slated for Helistream Inc., a longtime Robinson dealer in Costa Mesa, Calif. Customers on the West Coast will be among the first to receive the Robinson R66 Helicopters.
It will be outfitted with a Rolls Royce RR300, which is based on the RR250 series. The design of the helicopter began in 2001, though the company did not jump head-on into its engineering until 2005.
“Because we were not working to a hard deadline, we had the opportunity to refine and optimize the design,” said Pete Riedl, Robinson’s chief engineer. “The performance of the aircraft, so far, has met or exceeded all of our expectations.”
The rumor mill churned at last week’s NBAA Annual Meeting & Convention in Atlanta, Ga., that Cessna Aircraft Co., may have something up its sleeve in addition to the Citation Ten it unveiled there.
In the video above, AOPA Pilot interviews Cessna CEO Jack Pelton and he hints that the aircraft maker might be developing a single-turboprop model to be marketed as an option in between the Corvalis TT and Citation Mustang.
“(It) would ideally have a cruise speed greater than 300 knots,” Pelton says in the interview. “And a price point between $1 and $2.2 million. We want to be south of the Mustang in terms of price.”
Williamson Images / NBAA
We caught our breath from the 2010 NBAA Convention, and we have continued at full speed, providing the best aircraft listings and airport information for aviators anywhere online. Still, we will take a minute here to reflect and share some tidbits from the event.
This year’s convention saw a rise in the number of exhibitors from the previous year, with 1,083 turning out.
The sold-out static display featured 93 aircraft, as well as a waiting list for spots, and attendance increased more than 5 percent, totaling 24,206.
"It has been a pretty challenging couple of years for business aviation," said NBAA President Ed Bolen. "But even in this climate, the people and companies in business aviation continue to seek out effective venues for conducting business, sharing information and networking, which is why NBAA's convention remains a must-attend on the industry's calendar."
During this week’s NBAA Annual Meeting & Convention in Atlanta, the business-aviation association presented its Meritorious Service Award to golfing legend, businessman and American icon Arnold Palmer.
The highest recognition given by the organization each year, it honors Palmer, a pilot with more than 50 years experience and multiple ratings, for his work with the group and his contributions to the industry. In the video above, mega investor Warren Buffet congratulates Palmer for his work in the NBAA No Plane, No Gain campaign.
Buffet, Palmer and astronaut Neil Armstrong have appeared as representatives for the effort, which seeks to promote the advantages of business aviation.
The New York Times has weighed in on this year’s NBAA session. A story posted to its web site yesterday discusses ultra long-range jets and commercial-sized private jets, mentioning the Global 7000 and Global 8000 and Embraer’s Lineage 1000, as well as the Gulfstream G650.
The article notes that, while the private aviation industry struggled during the past two years of economic downturn, the interest in the largest and most-expensive aircraft actually increased, and then it provides sales data to support this.
“At the very highest niche, where customers can easily pay well over $40 million for a jet and more than $8 million to outfit the cabin, the business appears to be surviving the economic downturn.”
Read the full article here.