Brunswick Landing Selected as North American Production Site for Atol 650 Amphibious Aircraft
PRESS RELEASE FROM ATOL USA
Atol USA to Produce Amphibious LSA
Maine’s Brunswick Landing Selected as North American Production Site for Atol 650 Amphibious Aircraft
Press Contact: Paul Richards
Paul.Richards@Atol.US | 603.828.5373
Brunswick, Maine, Lakeland, Florida and Friedrichshafen, Germany. April 4, 2017. — Atol Avion today announced the creation of Atol USA, Inc., a joint venture between Finland’s Atol Avion and a U.S. based investor group for the production, distribution and support of the Atol 650 LSA in the North American market. Atol USA also announced the selection of Brunswick Landing for its US headquarters and production facility.
The Atol 650 is a high performance, amphibious aircraft designed to the Light Sport Aircraft (LSA) rule and boasts an industry leading 600-pound useful load. Flying surfaces employ light and rugged Oratex fabrics, ideally suited to the demands of off airport operations and the aircraft’s forward accessible cockpit makes docking a breeze. Each component has been optimized through design and selection of materials which include carbon-fiber, aluminum, Kevlar and wood-composites. This optimization has led to the high payload without compromising strength and durability.
“The Atol 650 is the class leader of the amphibious LSA’s,” states Paul Richards, Atol USA’s President. “The 650 is a serious adventure machine, as comfortable in the back country as on a suburban pond. Its useful load and rugged construction supports a range of mission’s others can only dream of…and it’s a blast to fly.”
Anssi Rekula, Atol Avion co-founder and sales director says “Finland has 188,000 lakes, so we know the joys of water flying…and the demands. Many of these lakes are remote and require range and reliability to access so we designed the 650 for this environment.”
Anssi knows reliability after 25 years of commercial flying at flight level 350, but also understands the joy of low and slow. “Although the 650 is mission capable it’s also perfect for the sheer pleasure of flight….cruising at 100 knots is the perfect speed to see the world slip by. North America is the biggest aviation market with huge demand for seaplanes and we think Atol USA Inc is the best and fastest solution for us to be able to serve our North American customers. Our Rovaniemi factory in Finland remains to produce for the rest of the world and for product development”, Anssi adds.
Atol USA will produce the 650 at Brunswick Executive Airport (KBXM), the Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority’s (MRRA) Brunswick Landing Aviation Complex in Brunswick Maine. Brunswick Executive Airport is the site of the former Brunswick Naval Air Station, home to the Navy’s sub chasing P-3 Orions prior to its closure in 2011.
Steve Levesque is MRRA’s Executive Director and was instrumental in bringing Atol USA to Brunswick Landing.
“We have world class assets to leverage on this project and have invested heavily to attract operations such as Atol. For instance, we are currently constructing an environmentally controlled composites layup room, curing oven and paint booth, all designed to aviation standards and sized to accept wings, fuselages and other large structures. These complement our CNC machining center, welding shops, 3D printers and on-site Composites Engineering Research Lab in TechPlace, a manufacturing technology incubator. We make these assets available to companies throughout the State of Maine. We’ve taken what the Navy left us and elevated it a notch to attract aviation manufacturers. Atol will join other world-class companies such as One Aviation, Tempus Jets, Flight Level Aviation, MVP Aero, Brunswick Aviation Services and Maine Coastal Flight as our aviation hub continues to grow and we’re delighted they choose Brunswick Landing as their home.”
Maine’s aviation community has also gotten behind the project according to Barry Valentine. Valentine is the Chairman of the Maine Aviation Business Association (MABA) and as a former administrator of the FAA understands the challenges in bringing a new aircraft to market.
“Our organization is all about helping Maine’s aviation industry succeed and we think this project has all the elements required for success. A great product, good team and a world class location.”
Valentine also points out “Maine has a long history with amphibious flight having been the home to Lake Aircraft for decades and we’d like nothing more than to once again see “flying boats” produced in Maine flying all over North America.”
Atol Avion will begin deliveries for European customers from their Finnish factory late this year and deliveries from the Brunswick Landing operation are scheduled for mid 2018. Plan to see the Atol 650 at Oshkosh in July.
About Atol Avion: The founders of Atol Avion have a passion for amphibious sport flying, a natural affinity from a country with nearly 200,000 lakes and are the developers of the Atol 650 Light Sport Aircraft. The 650 has been under development for over 5 years with development and production facilities in Rovaniemi, Finland.
About Atol USA, Inc: Atol USA, Inc is a joint venture between Atol Avion and an American Investor group and was formed to handle the production, delivery and support of the Atol 650 for the North American market. Atol USA is headquartered at Brunswick Landing in Brunswick, ME.
About Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority: The Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority (MRRA) is the entity charged with repurposing the former Naval Air Station, Brunswick, which closed in May of 2011, now known as Brunswick Landing. The redevelopment effort focuses on the establishment of centers of excellence in aerospace and aviation, composites and advanced materials, information technology, biotechnology and renewable energy. Since the base closure, Brunswick Landing has attracted over 100 new companies in these sectors, collectively employing over 1,250 people. A key element to the redevelopment effort is centered on the reuse of the world class aviation asset left by the Navy, now known as Brunswick Executive Airport (KBXM), a full service 24/7 facility, with two 8,000 ft. runways, ILS and LPV approaches, over 700,000 square feet of hangar and shop spaces, and 200 acres of tarmac to accommodate new development.
About Maine Aviation Business Association: The Maine Aviation Business Association is a 501(C6) non- profit organization dedicated to the promotion of aviation interests through the State of Maine and funded by its member organizations.