A Word from Ed­i­tor-in-Chief


IIT WAS A PO­LIT­I­CAL de­ci­sion, fol­lowed up by gov­ern­ment back­ing that saw the birth of Em­presa Brasileira de Aeronáu­tica or known the world over as Em­braer in 1969. Start­ing with pro­duc­tion of the Em­braer EMB 110 Ban­der­ante, the Brazil­ian aero­space be­he­moth has come a long way. With of­fices and fac­to­ries around the world and over 5,000 dif­fer­ent air­craft sold on ev­ery con­ti­nent, Em­braer is the mar­ket leader in com­mer­cial jets with up to 130 seats. It is also the fifth largest man­u­fac­turer of ex­ec­u­tive jets in the world and the largest de­fence and se­cu­rity so­lu­tions com­pany in Brazil. In this is­sue, we have traced the his­toric ori­gins of Em­braer which is go­ing from strength to strength. In an ex­clu­sive in­ter­view, the Pres­i­dent and CEO of Em­braer Com­mer­cial Avi­a­tion, John Slat­tery re­veals how th­ese are ex­cit­ing times for Em­braer with the de­vel­op­ment the E-Jets E2 jets pro­gramme which is pro­gress­ing well, to be de­liv­ered next year. The com­pany’s strat­egy has been to keep up the mo­men­tum and main­tain lead­er­ship po­si­tion in the 70-130 plus seat seg­ment. To date, Em­braer has de­liv­ered over 1,300 cur­rent gen­er­a­tion E-Jets to 70 air­lines in 50 coun­tries and that is phe­nom­e­nal growth. In­dia is one coun­try which can ben­e­fit from their re­gional jets, now that the gov­ern­ment has ini­ti­ated the Re­gional Con­nec­tiv­ity Scheme (RCS).

Mak­ing a case for the pri­vate in­dus­try to take up aero­space man­u­fac­tur­ing, Group Cap­tain A.K. Sachdev (Retd) writes that with full-blooded pri­vate sec­tor par­tic­i­pa­tion, ‘Make in In­dia’ may re­ally take off in the aero­space sec­tor. While on aero­space man­u­fac­tur­ing, the global air­line in­dus­try is pitch­ing for two en­gine air­craft as elu­ci­dated by Air Mar­shal B.K. Pandey (Retd) as fuel ef­fi­ciency is the high­est pri­or­ity for air­line op­er­a­tors.

On the do­mes­tic scene, the Indian air­line in­dus­try is forg­ing ahead with the RCS. On com­ple­tion of the ini­tial bid­ding process 128 re­gional routes have been awarded to five re­gional car­ri­ers. The gov­ern­ment is work­ing on a ma­jor push for in­fras­truc­ture de­vel­op­ment for RCS by op­er­a­tional­is­ing as many as 70 air­ports in­clud­ing sev­eral that are cur­rently un­served or un­der­served. Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi per­son­ally flagged off the first re­gional flight un­der this scheme from Shimla on April 27, 2017. R. Chan­drakanth pro­vides an up­date on RCS in this is­sue.

The avi­a­tion in­dus­try, gen­eral and busi­ness avi­a­tion in par­tic­u­lar, is go­ing through a cri­sis of pi­lot short­age, lead­ing to get­ting in ex­pat pi­lots. Colonel San­jay Julka, CEO, In­dia FlySafe Avi­a­tion, cre­ates an in­ter­est­ing in­ter­view sce­nario for Pi­lot in Com­mand and find that they are hop­ping from one air­line to an­other, leav­ing the air­line op­er­a­tor to pick the chaff from over­seas.

Mov­ing to mil­i­tary avi­a­tion, the fo­cus is on he­li­copters and Group Cap­tain Sachdev looks into the on­go­ing ac­qui­si­tions, the Indian Air Force. In an­other ar­ti­cle Air Mar­shal Pandey talks about the ca­pa­bil­i­ties of the Apache at­tack he­li­copters which the De­fence Ac­quis­tion Coun­cil has re­cently cleared.

In this is­sue, we have cov­ered how ABACE con­tin­ues to grow de­spite the plateau that the busi­ness avi­a­tion seg­ment seems to have hit as of now in Asia. The show ap­par­ently ex­ceeded the ex­pec­ta­tions of the NBAA and there were clear in­di­ca­tions of the busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties in the fu­ture in this seg­ment of the civil avi­a­tion in­dus­try. A de­tailed re­port by Chan­drakanth fig­ures in this is­sue of SP’s Avi­a­tion.

All this and more apart from the reg­u­lar fea­tures in this is­sue of SP’s Avi­a­tion. Wel­come aboard and wish you happy land­ings!

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