Blackhawk, the leading global provider of products and services that improve a wide variety of single-and twin-engine turboprop aircraft, will celebrate a significant company milestone during the 2011 European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE) in Geneva, Switzerland, May 17-19.
The company will recognize Reinhardt Michel, Blackhawk’s 300th engine upgrade customer, in a ceremony at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 17, at Blackhawk exhibit No. 783, in Hall Six at the PALEXPO, Geneva’s Exhibition and Congress Centre.
Michel, of Weinsburg, Germany, owns and flies a Piper PA-31T Cheyenne II, serial no. 8020017, purchased in 2004 and registered as D-IKET. After founding a successful information technology company, ICP vortex Computersysteme GmbH, Michel and his partners sold the business to Intel Corporation. Today, Michel is an investor in startup companies, a consultant and a member of various advisory boards. He will fly his Cheyenne primarily for personal travel.
“Faced with the TBO limit of my existing PT6A-28 engines, I spent some time investigating the alternatives, including overhaul of the existing engines versus upgrades with new engines,” Michel explained.
“My initial contact with Blackhawk was very promising, and we agreed Blackhawk would adopt its technology to European standards and EASA approval,” Michel added. “Promises turned quickly into reality, and I decided to run my Cheyenne through the Blackhawk conversion, which also includes the Hawkeye gauges. In addition, I have decided to upgrade to MT-Propellers’ new five-blade propellers, and my Cheyenne II will be the first aircraft worldwide with these super silent and high- performing props. I am extremely excited to pick up my “new” aircraft later and experience the difference.”
Blackhawk President and CEO Jim Allmon commented, “The Blackhawk team is proud to recognize Mr. Michel and pleased to provide his Cheyenne II with the operational improvements he most wanted. This ceremony is emblematic of Blackhawk’s success and industry leadership, driven by our focus on and commitment to customer satisfaction. We look forward to upgrading many more aircraft in the PA-31T family and other turboprop aircraft around the world.”
At the recognition ceremony, Allmon, Bobby Patton, Blackhawk International Sales Director, and Oliver Oberhofer, Blackhawk European Sales Representative, will present Michel with a custom leather flight jacket. In addition, Michel will receive a plaque from Pratt & Whitney presented by John Saabas, President of Pratt & Whitney Canada, Mike Perodeau, Vice President, Corporate Aviation and Military Programs, Pratt & Whitney Canada, and Nicholas Kanellias, General Manager, Utility, Military and General Aviation Programs, Pratt & Whitney Canada.
The Blackhawk XP135A upgrades Cheyenne I, IA, II and IIXL models, all high-performance, pressurized twin-turboprop aircraft. The upgrade, which requires no airframe modifications and adds negligible weight, replaces original, early-generation engines with factory-new Pratt & Whitney PT6A-135A engines with full warranties. The new engines significantly increase climb and cruise performance, as well as resale value, while reducing total operating costs. For example, at 26,000 feet, a Cheyenne II with Blackhawk’s upgrade can cruise at more than 276 KTAS while burning 72 gallons of fuel per hour, an increase of 30 KTAS and just nine gallon per hour over a stock aircraft. Blackhawk can quickly deliver engines for upgrade programs to approved installation facilities worldwide, and is offering special pricing on the program in 2011.
Blackhawk, founded in 1999 in Waco, Texas, and with facilities in Waco and Elizabethtown, N.C., is a recognized aviation leader in providing engine performance solutions to the turboprop fleet. The company has the largest installed fleet of STC twin-engine turboprop engine upgrades, making Blackhawk the largest non-OEM buyer of new Pratt & Whitney turboprop engines in the world. A worldwide network of approved dealers and service support centers complements Blackhawk’s U.S. facilities.