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The Purdue Research Park Aerospace District in West Lafayette, Indiana, announced a partnership that will make the university a sales, maintenance and training center for Italy’s Tecnam, a maker of general aviation piston airplanes.
“There is a tremendous challenge of pilot scarcity in U.S. aviation. One of our most important endeavors is to train and certify future pilots in an industry that is ever-changing and growing with new technologies and systems,” said Scott Niswonger, chairman of the Purdue Aviation board of directors. “Together Purdue University, Purdue Aviation, Purdue Research Foundation and Tecnam have laid a strong foundation to provide future and current pilots with the necessary equipment and technology to help them achieve their goals and further advance air travel around the globe.”
The agreement includes a sales center focused on Tecnam’s certified aircraft fleet, including the Tecnam P2006T twin, flight school integration, flight training and maintenance services.
Dan Hasler, president of the Purdue Research Foundation, called the Tecnam product line a “game changer” in the aviation industry. “We anticipate that this agreement will lead to other opportunities for future collaborations between Tecnam and the Purdue Research Park Aerospace District,” he predicted.
The 980-acre Purdue Research Park Aerospace District was established last year near the Purdue University Airport. The park’s first partner is Rolls-Royce, which will establish a research and development group in a 55,000-square-foot facility that is slated to open in the fall.
Purdue did not disclose how many Tecnam airplanes it plans to purchase.