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Top 5 Aviation News for June

New routes for Colombia, new technologies from Textron Aviation and Collins Aerospace. Find out more here.


1. Textron Aviation Reaches New Altitude with Successful Cessna Citation flight


Textron Aviation celebrated a significant milestone with the successful flight of its second flight test article of the Cessna Citation Ascend (P1). This breakthrough marks a crucial step toward final certification of the business jet, scheduled to enter service in 2025. The Ascend prototype, which first flew in 2023, set the standard as the first compliant production flight test aircraft, underscoring Textron Aviation's commitment to innovation in business aviation.


The maiden flight of the P1, piloted by Mike Bradfield and Maurice Girard, reached a maximum altitude of 13,500 feet and a speed of 308 knots during its 1 hour, 24-minute test. This aircraft is intended for extensive systems testing, including propulsion, avionics and environmental control, accumulating more than 400 flight hours in the certification program to date.


Chris Hearne, Textron Aviation's Senior Vice President of Engineering, praised the successful flight, noting the consistent performance of the aircraft and the dedication of the team involved. With the Ascend designed for maximum performance and comfort, Garmin G5000 avionics, it is expected to exceed market expectations with its nine-passenger capacity and luxurious interior appointments.


This advancement in the flight test program not only positions the Citation Ascend as a leading competitor in the business jet market, but also reinforces Textron Aviation's commitment to excellence in aerospace engineering and design.


Cessna Citation Ascend P1 aircraft - blue with yellow 2 engines
Textron Aviation - Cessna Citation Ascend P1

2. ACES 5: Innovation in Aviation Safety by Collins Aerospace


Collins Aerospace has introduced the ACES 5, a significant innovation in aviation safety. Designed to equip aircraft such as the F-15 and B-2, the ACES 5 incorporates advanced protection features, including passive head and neck projection, as well as enhanced limb restraints. These enhancements are crucial to protect pilots operating heavy equipment and ensure safe ejection under extreme conditions.


The ACES 5 seat not only offers improvements in physical safety, but also integrates sophisticated sensors that monitor altitude and loads on the pilot during ejection. This dynamic adjustment capability optimizes ejection conditions. Reducing the risk of injury to the pilot and improving aircraft separation accuracy.


In addition to its technical innovations, the ACES 5 sets a standard in safety protocols with its meticulously controlled activation process. From its ground arming to the pilot separation phase, the system ensures accurate and safe execution in critical situations, contributing to the confidence and operational safety of aircrews.


In summary, the ACES 5 not only represents an evolution in ejection seat technology, but also underscores Collins Aerospace's commitment to the safety and well-being of pilots on military and defense missions around the world.

Black aircraft outfitting chair from Collins Aerospace
ACES 5 - Collins Aerospace

3. Kuhn Aviation takes over Leesburg Executive Airport


Leesburg Executive Airport (KJYO), one of the busiest general aviation airports in Virginia, will undergo a significant change with the acquisition of ProJet Aviation by Kuhn Jet Center. The transaction will make Kuhn Aviation the sole provider of FBO services at the airfield, consolidating its position in the local market.


Scott Kuhn, President of Kuhn Aviation, highlighted his company's rapid expansion since its entry into the airport two years ago, reaching a 70% market share. This acquisition, scheduled to close this week, will include key facilities such as the 4,000-square-foot FBO terminal, and extensive hangar and fuel spaces.


The Leesburg City Council approved the transfer of crucial leases from ProJet to Kuhn, while both parties negotiate extensions to align existing leases. This transition marks a significant step forward for the airport operation and the local economy, with Kuhn Aviation preparing for future expansions and infrastructure improvements.


This strategic shift represents a milestone in the evolution of general aviation service in the Washington DC area, promising additional benefits and opportunities for the airport community and its users.


Leesburg Executive Airport, surrounded by airplanes, automobiles and various hangars.
Leesburg Executive Airport

4. Colombia Expands to the World: New International Routes Take Off from Bogota


At a historic press conference held on Wednesday, June 5, 2024, Sergio PARÍS MENDOZA, director of Aeronáutica Civil de Colombia, spoke about Colombia's new air expansion. Here are the details:


1- Australia, Ethiopia, Jamaica and Qatar on the radar: progress confirmed in talks to establish direct routes with these 4 countries. From intercontinental connections to strategic agreements, the possibilities of connecting with such diverse destinations are closer than ever.


2- Connection with the Middle East through the Dubai - Bogota route: The arrival of Emirates in Colombia marks a milestone in air connectivity. This daily route not only facilitates tourism and trade, but also strengthens ties between both regions, offering 7 weekly flights with 354 passenger capacity.


3- Jamaica, a meeting point in the Caribbean: Although still in the evaluation phase, the possibility of using Jamaica as an intermediate stopover promises to further expand flight options to and from Colombia. This potential step would open up new opportunities for travelers and emerging markets in the region.

These initiatives not only promise to transform Colombia's tourism and economic landscape, but also consolidate Bogota as a global network of international flights.


Person standing in the middle of two flags, one yellow and the other blue
Sergio París, Director of the Civil Aeronautics of Colombia- Photo taken by the Communications and Institutional Relations Advisory Office

5. Crucial Advances for Global Aviation at ACI World Committee


More than 300 airport experts from around the world have gathered in Montreal to participate in this event, which aims to strengthen international collaboration and address the most pressing challenges facing the airport industry today. During the event, representatives from ACI's six global standing committees discuss and share best practices, seeking to develop strategies that will drive sustainable growth in aviation globally.


The Forum featured keynote addresses from prominent industry leaders, including Luis Felipe de Oliveira of ACI World and Yves Beaychamp of ADM Aeroports de Montereal. These leaders shared perspectives on the crucial role of airports as drivers of regional and global economic development. In addition, the significant anniversary of the Chicago Convention was highlighted, underscoring the historical importance and lasting impact of this international aviation regulation.


The event also focused on strategic issues such as future regulation and international cooperation in aviation. Emerging trends and priorities were explored to ensure sustainable and safe growth of the sector. In summary, the ACI World Committee Forum not only marks a milestone for the organization and the city of Montreal, but also represents a crucial platform for moving towards a more efficient and sustainable future for global aviation.


purple and blue sign promoting the ICA World Committee - June 2024
ICA World Committee - June 2024

Rodrigo Perdomo Gutiérrez de Piñeres




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