From Hawker Beechcraft
During the 2010 NBAA Annual Meeting & Convention last month, we came across too many updated aircraft with too few days to discuss them on here. This week we will look back on some of the developments announced during the business aviation event that were not discussed here last month.
Today we look at the Beechcraft King Air 250, unveiled on the day before the convention officially kicked off. Aviation International News reported last week that the King Air 250 will be the first turboprop aircraft to feature the composite Hartzell 4-blade ASC-II.
Hartzell says the propeller, also unveiled at the convention, reduces aircraft weight without taking away from strength or durability.
The 93-inch diameter blade is being considered for other aircraft, AIN reports, though Hartzell has yet to announce any of these formally. The blade also will fit late-model King Air 200s.
[more]The King Air 250, according to a statement from Hawker Beechcraft, also includes BLR Aerospace winglets and engine induction modifications to boost performance. It is modified from a King Air B200 GT.
The company says the aircraft will outperform all other King Air B200s on takeoff by 400 feet or more. (Sea level takeoff over a 50-foot obstacle at max gross weight is 2,111 feet, according to the statement.)
“The shorter runway capability found in the King Air 250 provides our customers access to more than 1,100 airports that were previously unavailable to them, allowing them to spend less travel time door-to-door by flying closer to their final destinations,” said Shawn Vick, an executive vice president with the company.
The King Air 250 should see its first deliveries during the second quarter of 2011, the company said.
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."
Events during the convention included recognition for those who helped bring relief to Haiti following the January earthquake, honoring five legends of flight as FAA Wright Brothers Master Pilots, and golfer-pilot Arnold Palmer received the NBAA Meritorious Service to Aviation Award.
Live and silent auctions during the convention raised more than $220,000 to support the Corporate Angel Network.
Industry news also flowed from the convention floor.
Cessna rolled out its Citation Ten (featuring the new Garmin G5000), while Piper showed off the PiperJet Altaire, Embraer highlighted its Legacy 650 and Lineage 1000, and Bombardier debuted the Global 7000 and Global 8000.
Whew, what a run! Who is already geared up for next year?
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.
“It is Arnold Palmer’s service to the industry that is the reason we are presenting him with the Meritorious Service Award today,” said NBAA President Ed Bolen during the ceremony. “Arnold Palmer has been willing to use his good name to promote business aviation at a time when we needed it most.”
Palmer said in his remarks that the day prior he flew from Orlando to Charlotte to conduct some business and returned in time to be in his Florida office by early afternoon.
“As a young boy I dreamed of flying, and aviation has allowed me to visit places all over the world and spend extra time with my family,” Palmer said. “I wouldn’t be here today without my airplane.”
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.