May 31, 2012
Honeywell’s business and general aviation division has its eye firmly fixed on indigenous GA and business aviation aircraft makers that are emerging in the Asia-Pacific region.
Robert Wilson, president of Honeywell Business & General Aviation, says Honeywell sees there are GA and business aviation aircraft being developed in Asia-Pacific to meet the growing demand in the region, and he adds that Honeywell is keen to be involved in these programs as they evolve.
He says his division has been speaking to Chinese aircraft maker Caiga about “how the Epic Escape will evolve in [the] future and how the Honeywell TPE331 would endure.” The TPE331 turboprop engine powers the Epic Escape, and Honeywell wants to continue to be the engine provider. Caiga, which stands for China Aviation Industry General Aircraft Co., bought Epic in 2010. It also bought Cirrus, a U.S. aircraft maker and a customer of Honeywell systems.
Another Chinese aircraft maker that Honeywell has been working with is Harbin Aircraft, which is developing the Y12F, a new variant of its long-running Y12 family of 19-seat aircraft. Honeywell provides its Primus Apex avionics suite to the Y12F. The new variant has been undergoing flight testing and is due to receive Chinese certification this year.
Other airframers in the region in Honeywell’s sights include Southeast Asian company AeroNimbus, which is developing a very light business jet aircraft, Wilson says. Honeywell also has been in contact with Indonesian Aerospace (IAe) to discuss the N219, a new twin-engine turboprop aircraft that IAe is in the very early stages of developing. And Honeywell wants to be involved in GippsAero’s GA18 program, adds Wilson. The GA18 is a new variant of the GAF Nomad, an 18-seater first developed in Australia in the 1960s and ’70s. GippsAero is an Australian aircraft maker owned by Indian industrial conglomerate Mahindra. GippsAero bought the rights to the Nomad program. It also is helping to develop the NM5, a five-seat GA aircraft that India’s CSIR National Aerospace Laboratories designed.
Honeywell already supplies equipment to New Zealand airframer Pacific Aerospace, specifically for the P-750 XSTOL.