Last issue my words on this page began with: “All being well, printed copies of this Autumn 2023 edition of EVA Magazine should be available on the NBAA-BACE show floor in Las Vegas.” Unfortunately, things did not turn out well. The magazines never arrived at the show. In fact, they never made it into Nevada and were last heard of somewhere in California.
As I write again for this Winter 2023 edition, the COP28 conference is underway in the UAE. Stories are already floating around expressing generally ill-informed opinions about the business and head-of-state aircraft transporting delegates – I saw one suggesting ‘something must be done about them [private jets]’. The same journalist claimed that a business jet emits more carbon than a commercial airliner – which is obviously not the case.
It is correct that the aviation industry, including business and VIP aviation, ought to be held under close public scrutiny regarding its sustainability efforts, but that scrutiny must be properly informed. It really is time for the business aviation community to engage properly with the media, not to argue and refute, but to inform and explain. This was the clear message that emerged from the Irish Business and General Aviation Association conference in November.
Something of a sustainability thread runs through this edition. Our cover story from AEG Fuels inevitably and quite rightly touches on sustainability; Gulfstream President Mark Burns and Robert Peluso, Executive Director Systems Engineering at Pratt & Whitney Canada, provide background to the airframer’s historic 100% SAF transatlantic G600 mission on 19 November 2023; and we talk challenges and timescales with Kennedy Ricci, President at 4AIR.
Elsewhere, we move inside the cabin, examining CTT Systems’ cabin humidification system in a new light as a feature now available on the ACJ TwoTwenty, ACJ319neo and ACJ320neo. Continuing the theme, in the first of an occasional series we ask what makes a great business jet cabin and explore the philosophy behind cabin design at Embraer and the Honda Aircraft Company.
We also speak with CJ3+ owner/pilot David Natinsky about his experience as a SmartSky customer and, after its recent CJ3 Gen2 launch, ask Textron Aviation’s SVP Customer Experience, Christi Tannahill, how the company’s Customer Advisory Board process works.
Finally, we reveal Saxon Air’s nascent relationship with Airbus Helicopters through a delightful corporate H125. The aircraft is based in East Anglia, a UK region from which travel links to just about anywhere else in the country are poor. Regional businesses, executives and others regularly use the H125 for trips into London and elsewhere, spending an hour or so in the air compared to several hours in the car or train, saving time, facilitating face-to-face communication and contributing to local economies. Saxon Air offsets all its carbon emissions and fuels the H125 with SAF where it can. There can be few better business aviation stories through which to inform and explain the industry’s sustainability efforts.