Gloucester, England; Mississauga, Ontario, Canada – Dowty Propellers has expanded its worldwide support network through a partnership agreement with AirStart for rotable parts services on R408 propeller systems that equip Bombardier Q400 regional airliners.

This three-year exclusive agreement brings together the expertise of Dowty Propellers as the R408 propeller system OEM (original equipment manufacturer) and the resources of AirStart – including the company’s established inventory of Q400 airliner parts, with exchange, lease and purchase options.

AirStart’s support covers major elements of the R408 propeller system: blades, spinner, hub, pitch control unit, overspeed governor and brush blocks. Based in Canada, the company’s global customer base includes operators in key emerging airline markets, with the Dowty Propellers agreement expected to generate a multi-million-dollar business volume.

“We’re partnering with a company that has a strong reputation in rotable parts, as well as excellent Q400 operator relationships and end-to-end global logistics,” said Oliver Towers, the President of Dowty Propellers.

AirStart maintains the world’s largest inventory of Q400 propeller blades, which is positioned at the company’s multiple locations around the world for customers operating in some 50 countries.

“Working with Dowty Propellers ensures we provide customers with the best service and quality,” Robert Wills, AirStart’s owner and founder, explained. “Our agreement includes guaranteed turnaround times and pricing, along with customised work scopes for better availability.”

Dowty Propellers’ R408 propeller system has six all-composite blades and is installed on the twin-engine Q400’s Pratt & Whitney Canada PW150A turboprop powerplants. It incorporates a fail-safe electronic control system, precise speed selection and synchrophasing accuracy.

About Dowty Propellers

As a leader in the development, manufacture and support of electronically controlled, all-composite propeller systems, Dowty Propellers provides solutions for the propulsion needs of today and tomorrow. Its products are used in applications that range from commercial airliners and military airlifters to multi-role seaplanes and marine hovercraft.

With a proven record of product development, introduction and support, Dowty Propellers continually invests in technologies, production capabilities and human resources – resulting in propeller systems that are safe, efficient and reliable.  Its history of firsts-to-market includes the all-composite propeller blade and full-authority digital propeller control.  More than 23,000 advanced composite blades have been delivered to date by Dowty Propellers, with the lead blade logging over 45,000 hours of flight time. 

About AirStart (

AirStart provides critical maintenance support to airlines, repair stations and trading partners around the world. Every day, AirStart helps airlines around the world avoid the multiple negative consequences of grounded aircraft through its innovative Rapid Exchange (RX) programme, which allows airlines to exchange damaged parts for replacement components, immediately and at a fraction of the cost of purchasing new parts outright.

AirStart has credit terms with every single component supplier globally and is an accepted vendor at over 500 aviation-buying entities. AS9120B certified, AirStart adheres to the highest quality standards in existence in the aerospace industry. Based in Toronto, Canada, AirStart has been ranked for four consecutive years as one of Canada’s fastest growing companies by Profit Magazine, and was listed as one of Canada’s Best Managed Companies by Deloitte Consulting for 2015, 2016 and 2017.