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News Letter 18 October 2018

Good day all

Klerksdorp is the centre of attraction for all things aerobatics this weekend, the SAC North-West Regional competition will be taking place on Saturday and Sunday. This competition seems to have attracted a very large field including a few newcomers to Sport Aerobatics and of course a full field of competitors in all the classes, it will definitely be worth a visit.

Due to the bad weather last weekend the “Warbirds and Vintage Planes over Irene” get together was postponed, but the good news is it is planned to go ahead this Saturday.

The Large Scale Aerobatics Gauteng Regionals are scheduled to take place at Snoopy’s Squadron on Sunday, if you feel like some serious RC Aerobatic action this is the place to be. Snoopys Squadron is located South of Krugersdorp at Latitude: 26° 7' 46.64"S Longitude: 27° 44' 27.18"E

AerospaceAfrica.TV, an online commercial TV bouquet of channels has been established to highlight and focus on developments and business news in Africa has recently launched and is now available at

They have seven designated channels running 24/7

News (Aviation News)

Attitude (Sport Aviation)

Airside (Airport News)

Drones (UAV and Drone News)

Airmac (Technical News)

Rotor (Helicopter News)

Wings (Commercial and Airlines)

Boeing Business Jets Delivers First BBJ MAX

The first BBJ MAX 8 has been delivered, Boeing Business Jets announced at NBAA-BACE on Monday. The aircraft is the first of the MAX line to go to a customer. To commemorate the delivery, the company introduced a new interior concept by design firm SkyStyle. According to Boeing Business Jets, it currently has 20 orders for BBJ MAX aircraft, including a recent order from Seacons Trading Ltd. for a BBJ MAX 7.

“We are excited to begin delivering a longer‐range and more capable version of the world's most popular business jetliner,” said head of Boeing Business Jets Greg Laxton. “There has been great market interest and anticipation for the BBJ MAX and our valued customers will soon be able to see the new standard in business travel.”


The BBJ MAX models are variants of the Boeing 737. Boeing Business Jets says that the MAX 7, which is scheduled for entry into service next year, has a comparable external footprint to business jets like the Global 7500 and provides approximately three times the cabin space. The MAX 7 will have a range of 7,000 NM and an estimated direct operating cost of $3,071 per hour.

Boeing Business Jets reports that it has sold a total of five aircraft this year. It has also delivered five aircraft in 2018. The company has delivered 234 aircraft since it launched in 1996.

Embraer Launches Praetor Bizjets

Embraer has updated its Legacy 450 and Legacy 500 mid- and super-midsize business jets but the upgrades are big enough that it has created new product lines. The Praetor 500 and 600 use the same airframes and engines as their predecessors but the design enhancements offer significant boosts in efficiency and range. They were shown for the first time at a splashy unveiling Sunday in Orlando ahead of the National Business Aviation Association convention. The 500 has a range of 3250 nautical miles while the 600 will go 3900 NM. The range boost comes from larger fuel capacity and redesigned winglets that make the wingspan about two feet longer.

Inside, the cabin has been redesigned and updated with the latest connectivity and entertainment options. Up front, the Rockwell Collins suite includes vertical weather display, ADS-B In, and wind shear prediction capability. Optional pilot tools include enhanced and synthetic vision and a head-up display. Like the Legacy models, the aircraft are fly-by-wire and add a turbulence dampening feature to improve ride comfort. First deliveries for the 600 are set for second quarter of 2019 and the 500 will be ready by the end of 2019. The base price of the 500 is about $17 million and the 600 is $21 million. Embraer will continue to build the Legacy 450 and 500 and will offer upgrades of existing airframes to the Praetor model.

Transnet NPA tests helicopter service at Port of Cape Town

Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) is exploring options to introduce a helicopter service at its Port of Cape Town to assist with operations during major swells and to increase the availability of service during stormy conditions.

Cape Town has been plagued recently by weather-related disruptions and high swell conditions. This has at times impacted on port operations and the use of pilot boats to transfer marine pilots onto and off vessels. Physical testing of the marine helicopter operation took place between 28 September and 5 October at the port using a helicopter that services the Port of Durban.

Port of Cape Town Harbour Master, Captain Alex Miya, said, “Richards Bay and Durban are the only ports in TNPA’s complementary port system which use helicopters to transfer marine pilots. Our recent successful test exercise indicated that this is a viable service to offer at the Port of Cape Town.” At a recent customer forum in Cape Town, TNPA chief operating officer, Nozipho Mdawe said a fully-fledged feasibility study is being undertaken and TNPA will be engaging with customers to determine the best approach.

“The process includes engaging with major customers to establish their level of interest and to test whether the service cost would be acceptable. We are also debating whether the service should be shared between the Western Cape ports or dedicated to one port,” she said.

Mdawe said two options are being explored. The first involves stationing one of the existing TNPA helicopters in Cape Town to service the Western Cape ports, while the second entails partnering with a private helicopter company to render the service as and when swell conditions dictate or when there are insufficient pilot boats to meet the number of vessel calls.

TNPA has an existing fleet of three AgustaWestland (AW 109) helicopters to service the Ports of Durban and Richards Bay but through its Fleet Replacement Programme has procured two new helicopters valued at around R250 million from Italian global high-tech company Leonardo S.p.A. The two new aircraft are expected to be delivered by June 2019.


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