The aviation world's spotlight continued to shine on Europe Wednesday, despite the layers of ash in the upper atmosphere.
David Learmount of Flight Global echoed the recurring theme reported most everywhere from EBACE this week -- that recovery in the industry will come at a slow pace. It focuses on comments from Richard Aboulafia, chief analyst of the Teal Group, and says return to robust activity in aircraft sales may not arrive in full until 2012.
Jeremy Cox of Jetbrokers, Inc., reports directly from EBACE on his blog. He says a lobby bar during the first night was packed with people eager to make deals.
Cox also mentions that the Gulfstream G650 gained the title of world's fastest business jet. Flying at Mach 0.925 on Sunday, it strips the ranking from Cessna's Citation X.
Gulfstream chief Joe Lombardo spoke at EBACE on how European growth has helped solidify the business jet market and, in what has become a secondary theme at the convention, he looked forward to growth in developing nations. A decade ago, there were only 27 Gulfstream aircraft in Asia. That number stands at more than 100 today.
The other emerging story in Europe was the return of the volcanic ash that shut down air travel throughout the continent last month. This time, though, the effects have been more localized.
Ryanair canceled its flight between Malta and Edinburgh on Wednesday. Airports in Ireland and Scotland reopened this morning as the ash moved west.
While most of the news in aviation took place across the Atlantic, there were a couple developments of interest announced in the U.S.
The FAA announced a digital NOTAM system going live in Atlantic City. The link in the prior sentence includes details on the system. Other airports to join the program in the next round are Washington Dulles, Reagan National, Baltimore-Washington International, Richmond, Norfolk, Denver, Chicago O’Hare and Midway, Memphis, Fairbanks, Alaska and Ft. Wayne, Ind.
In a final note, NASA tested an astronaut escape rocket for its Orion spacecraft in New Mexico this morning. It was a success that "went like clockwork," even as the future-of-space-travel program itself is being restructured.