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Sun 'n Fun Opening Day

Flight Design’s new CTLS HL (heavy lift), powered by a 115-hp Rotax 914 Turbo engine, unveiled at Sun ’n Fun Tuesday.

The first PiperSport was delivered Tuesday at Lakeland. Pictured are (l to r) plane owners Brian Garhammer, Dr. Mike Mordaunt and Charlie Carlong, all of Miami, Florida; and Piper CEO and President Kevin J. Gould.

TL Ultralight Sirius
SportAir USA’s new TL Ultralight Sirius, introduced to Sun ’n Fun attendees on opening day.

April 13, 2010 — Warm breezes and a sunny sky greeted visitors to the first day of the Sun ’n Fun Fly-In at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport in Lakeland, Florida on Tuesday, April 13. This year’s annual Spring Break for Pilots continues through Sunday, April 18. Performances by the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds later this week and a night air show on Friday are some of the highlights for aviation enthusiasts.

But for true airplane lovers, it’s new airplanes, avionics, engines, tools and aircraft ogling that is this mission of the week.

  • At one of the first press conferences of the week, Flight Design USA announced another addition to its line…the CTLS HL (for heavy lift) powered by a 115-hp Rotax 914 Turbo engine. In Europe it’s aimed at the glider towing market, with its 12-percent larger wingspan and a larger stabilator.  In the U.S., Flight Design USA President Tom Peghiny announced a partnership with Clamar Floats to develop amphibious composite floats for the CTLS HL. Just prior to Sun’n Fun, Flight Design introduced the CTLS Lite, coming in at $20,000 less than the CTLS (and 50 pounds lighter), at a base price of $119,500.

  • Piper Aircraft made the delivery of the first PiperSport on Tuesday afternoon, after introducing the aircraft at the U.S. Sport Aviation Expo in January. Piper CEO and President Kevin J. Gould presented the keys to new co-owners Charlie Carlong, Dr. Mike Mordaunt, and Brian Garhammer, all of Miami, Florida.

    In other Piper news, the company announced that development of the Piper Jet continues, with the preliminary design review completed. Work on the conforming test flight aircraft is underway. First deliveries remain targeted for first half of 2013.

  • CEO Gould also announced that Piper expects production of its single-engine aircraft to be up more than 75 percent in 2010 over 2009 numbers.

  • Gould and ForwardVision President Patrick Farrell also announced the availability of EVS-100 and EVS-600 technology in the Piper Malibu/Mirage/Matrix lines.

  • SportAir USA LLC debuted the new high-wing TL Ultralight Sirius to Sun ’n Fun attendees. Bill Canino is now bringing the aircraft, which was first introduced at AERO 2007 in Germany, to the U.S. market.

  • During a quick chat with Cessna VP of Communications Bob Stangarone, we learned that no. 2 and 3 production SkyCatchers, purchased for EAA by the Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust, are being assembled at Yingling facility in Wichita, Kansas.

  • A “V-Twin Velocity”? Velocity Aircraft of Sebastian, Florida, is exploring the development of a “spin proof” twin engine airplane, using twin Lycoming IO-320 (or 360) engines. In the event of an engine failure, the Velocity team believes the canard design should prevent the main wing from stalling.

Look for more updates in Thursday’s e-Hotline.

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