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Saturday, October 18, 2014

AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert

This is an overview of all articles linked within the selected daily newsletter.
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Emirates reject Delta’s apology regarding Anderson’s 9/11 comments

February 20, 2015 · 556 Views

The bitter dispute between US- and Gulf-based airlines has reached a new level after Emirates flatly rejected an open apology made concerning what was seen as incredibly tactless and insensitive remarks made by Delta’s Chief Executive, Richard Anderson. The unfortunate incident relates back to comments made by a group of American airlines that a number of the larger Gulf carriers had benefited from state subsidies amounting to a figure in excess of US$40bn. As a consequence the American airlines either wanted to renegotiate or scrap the current Open Skies agreement.
Offended by such claims, the Gulf carriers retaliated by questioning whether or not US airlines had received government subsidies totaling US$5bn in the wake of 9/11. Unfortunately Delta’s Anderson, responding to this claim on CNN, said: “It’s a great irony to have the United Arab Emirates from the Arabian Peninsula talk about that, given the fact that our industry was really shocked by the terrorism of 9/11, which came from terrorists from the Arabian Peninsula.” While the UAE and Qatar, two of the States’ allies who have offered either military or logistical support for international operations were particularly upset by these comments, Delta simply made it clear that Anderson had been responding to claims regarding post 9/11 subsidies. “He didn’t mean to suggest the Gulf carriers or their governments are linked to the 9/11 terrorists. We apologize if anyone was offended.”
Unfortunately the largest of the three main Gulf carriers did not see this as acceptable. “We believe that the statements made this week by Mr. Anderson were deliberately crafted and delivered for specific effect,” it confirmed in a statement. However US airlines continue to complain that they have lost significant numbers of bookings since 2008 as a result of Gulf competition and cited documents they indicate demonstrate aid which has allowed their competitors to offer cheap fares. In retaliation, Gulf officials say that most US carriers do not fly the same routes and are losing business only because they offer an inferior service.
This is not a dissimilar situation to the one between Gulf airlines and European carriers, including Lufthansa, and coincidentally has come at the same time as US airlines are trying to have US Exlm Bank closed down. They believe Gulf carriers are benefitting to a greater degree from the export credit agency. The tit-for-tat dialog continues with Western airlines showing concern for the safety of thousands of service industry jobs, a complaint to which Gulf carriers have responded by making it very clear they support at least as many jobs in the aerospace sector with their huge orders for aircraft.


Snecma and HAL to create joint venture and build a new production facility in India

February 20, 2015 · 655 Views

Snecma (Safran), a leading manufacturer of aircraft engines, and Hindustan Aeronautics  (HAL), a leading aerospace manufacturer, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on January 28th, 2015 in Bangalore to explore establishing a joint venture in India for the production of aero-engine parts.  The proposed joint venture will initially focus on the manufacture of high-tech parts for the Dassault Rafale’s Snecma M88 engine, then subsequently contribute to other major aerospace projects of HAL & Snecma, in India and worldwide. Spanning over 30,000 m², the proposed joint venture’s new plant is expected to benefit from substantial investment by the two partners, providing it with state-of-the-art machinery and equipment. This agreement marks a major step forward in the long-standing collaboration between Snecma and HAL. The proposed joint venture will further broaden the scope of the excellent relations established over the past 60 years between Safran affiliates and the Indian aerospace industry. For example, Snecma manufactures the M53 engines powering the Mirage 2000H “Vajra” fighters operated by the Indian Air Force.


Design flaws led to 787 battery fire

December 2, 2014 · 197 Views

On the 7th January 2013 a fire was reported on board a Boeing 787 Dreamliner while parked at Boston’s airport in the USA. The fire was put down to a problem with one of the plane’s lithium-ion batteries. A week later an All Nippon Airways 787 Dreamliner had to make an emergency landing after smoke was discovered inside the plane which was subsequently traced back to another lithium-ion battery. As a consequence of this incident, all 787 Dreamliners were grounded until April of that year until further acceptable testing and improvements were carried out to the battery system on board the plane. The battery itself was manufactured by GS Yuasa and comprised eight individual cells making up a combined weight of 63lbs.
Nearly two years later and the results of the investigation into the first incident have concluded that the lithium-ion battery installed in the plane should not have received certification by the FAA. The National Transport Safety Board (NTSB) were also critical of Boeing who they believed had erroneously ruled out the chances of thermal runaway in its assessment of the battery’s safety. Boeing’s battery tests to obtain original certification included crushing battery cells, driving nails through them and deliberately introducing short circuits to cause failure. Boeing found “nothing adverse happened” while these tests were carried out, and so deemed the battery’s box and internal protection to be of an acceptable standard. Boeing stated that it had followed the certification process set out by the FAA. It would seem that while the cause of the fire has been clearly identified, responsibility for its occurrence has not been accepted in full by anyone.


Rolls-Royce forced to axe 2,600 jobs after second profit warning this year

November 5, 2014 · 164 Views

Back in February this year, Rolls-Royce, the FTSE-100 engine maker, lost over £3bn of its value after shocking the market with its first profits warning in a decade. To announce a second one this October has created considerable concern and Rolls-Royce has decided that over the next 18 months they need to reduce costs by up to £80m a year by axing 2,600 jobs, the majority of which will be in the aerospace sector in Britain and the United States. The focus is on Rolls-Royce’s key Trent engines as they move from the development to the production phase, which consequently requires fewer engineers.
Back in February John Rishton, Rolls-Royce group’s Chief Executive, had admitted that the future was “bumpier than I had expected”, while blaming the current problems on deteriorating economic conditions and a tit-for-tat trade war between the EU and Russia over the Ukrainian crisis which had affected its nuclear and energy business as well as its power-systems unit. This week Rishton has had to admit that “We are taking determined management action and accelerating our progress on cost. The measures announced today will not be the last; however they will contribute towards Rolls-Royce becoming a stronger and more profitable company.”
Another consequence of the situation is the unexpected departure of Finance Director, Mark Morris, leaving the company after 27 year without any explanation. He will be replaced by David Smith, who is being promoted from Finance Director of the Rolls-Royce Aerospace division. This second profit warning saw share value fall 11% to 832p, wiping a further £2bn off the company’s value. However, news of the redundancies was well received by investors and the share price rallied by 2%, currently standing at 832p. This is clear confirmation of comments made by Espirito Santo’s analyst, Ed Stacey, who indicated that investors would be expecting a clear message from the new Finance Director and tight control on all finances.


Air France-KLM selects GEnx engines for Boeing 787 fleet

March 25, 2014 · 113 Views

Air France-KLM selected the GEnx-1B engine to power its 25 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 12 leased 787 aircraft. The total engine order is valued at more than $1.7bn. Air France-KLM and GE Aviation have also signed an agreement that will allow Air France-KLM to offer maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services for the GEnx-1B engine. Under this agreement, Air France-KLM will be licensed to perform maintenance and overhaul work on the GEnx-1B engine and GE will provide technical support and assistance on overhaul workscoping and component repair licenses, comprehensive material support and training.


ILFC closes $1.5bn senior secured term loan

March 7, 2014 · 80 Views

International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) has closed a new senior secured term loan of $1.5 billion. The loan will bear interest at LIBOR plus 275 basis points with a 0.75% LIBOR floor, is priced at 99.5% of par value, and will mature in 2021. The collateral used to support the transaction has an initial weighted average age of 9.1 years. It will be secured primarily by a first priority-perfected lien on the equity of certain of ILFC’s subsidiaries, which directly or indirectly own a pool of aircraft and related leases. ILFC plans to use the proceeds for general corporate purposes, including purchasing aircraft and supporting the company’s liquidity cushion.


Airbus Commercial reports another year of financial improvement

February 26, 2014 · 80 Views

In 2013, Airbus achieved a new industry record of 1,619 gross commercial orders (FY 2012: 914 gross orders) with net orders of 1,503 aircraft (FY 2012: 833 net orders), excluding ATR. Gross orders comprised 1,253 A320 Family aircraft, 77 A330s, 239 A350 XWBs and 50 A380s. Fourth-quarter orders included Emirates Airline’s agreement for 50 A380s and Etihad Airways’ order for 50 A350 XWBs, 36 A320neos and one A330-200F. Airbus Military (now part of Airbus Defence and Space) received 17 net orders (FY 2012: 32 net orders). Airbus’ net order intake increased sharply to €202.3bn (FY 2012: €88.9bn). At the end of 2013, Airbus’ consolidated order book was valued at €647.4bn (year-end 2012: €525.5bn). The Airbus Commercial backlog was worth €627.1bn (year-end 2012: €505.3bn), comprising 5,559 Airbus aircraft (year-end 2012: 4,682 units) and representing over eight years of production. Airbus Military’s order book was worth €20.8bn (year-end 2012: €21.1bn). Airbus series aircraft deliveries increased to 626 aircraft (FY 2012: 588 aircraft, including three A330s without revenue recognition). Airbus Military delivered 31 aircraft (FY 2012: 29 aircraft). Airbus’ consolidated revenues increased seven percent to €42,012m (FY 2012: €39,273m), reflecting higher commercial and military aircraft deliveries. The Division’s consolidated EBIT rose to €1,710m (FY 2012: €1,252m). Airbus Commercial’s revenues rose to €39,889m (FY 2012: €37,624m). The Airbus Commercial reported EBIT was €1,595m (FY 2012: €1,147m) with the EBIT before one-off at €2,216m (FY 2012: €1,669m). Airbus Commercial’s EBIT before one-off benefitted from the improved operational performance, including favourable volume, some better pricing and an improvement in A380 losses. It also included higher A350 XWB programme support costs. Revenues at Airbus Military rose to €2,893m (FY 2012: €2,131m), driven by the A400M ramp-up and higher volumes from both light and medium transport planes and tankers. The EBIT at Airbus Military was €166m (FY 2012: €93m).


Boeing Commercial Airplanes reports full year revenue of $53bn

January 29, 2014 · 76 Views

Boeing Commercial Airplanes fourth-quarter revenue increased to $14.7bn and full-year revenue increased to a record $53bn on higher delivery volume. Fourth-quarter operating margin improved to 10.3% and full-year operating margin grew to 10.9% on the higher volume, favorable delivery mix and continued strong operating performance. During the quarter, the company launched the 777X with 259 orders and commitments. During the year, the 787 program completed first flight of the 787-9, successfully launched the 787-10 and began operating at a 10 per month production rate in final assembly. The 737 program delivered at a record production rate of 38 per month and has won nearly 1,800 firm orders for the 737 MAX since launch. In 2013, a record 648 commercial aircraft were delivered. In January 2014, the company reached an eight-year contract extension through 2024 with the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers District 751 (IAM). Commercial Airplanes booked 465 net orders during the quarter and 1,355 during the year. Backlog remains strong with 5,080 airplanes valued at a record $374 billion.


A350 XWB in Bolivia for high altitude testing

January 9, 2014 · 67 Views

The A350 XWB development aircraft, MSN3, is in Bolivia where it will perform a series of tests at the high altitude airfields of Cochabamba and La Paz. Cochabamba is around 8,300 feet above sea level, and La Paz is one of the world’s highest airports at 13,300 feet. Operations at such high altitude airfields are particularly demanding on aircraft engines, Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) and systems. The aim of these trials is to demonstrate and validate the full functionality of engines, systems, materials as well as to assess the overall aircraft behaviour under these extreme conditions. A number of take-offs with all engines operating and with simulated engine failures are being performed at each of the airfields to collect data on engine operating characteristics and validate the aircraft take-off performance. The autopilot behaviour will also be evaluated during automatic landings and go-arounds. Since the A350 XWB’s first flight with MSN1 on June 14th 2013, over 800 flight test hours have been performed in close to 200 test flights by both MSN1 and MSN3. In total the A350 XWB flight test campaign will accumulate around 2,500 flight hours with the fleet of five aircraft. The rigorous flight testing will lead to the certification of the A350-900 by the European EASA and US FAA airworthiness authorities, prior to entry into service in Q4 2014.


Firefly welcomes first ATR 72-600

July 5, 2013 · 66 Views

Firefly, Malaysia Airlines’ subsidiary carrier has taken ownership of its first brand-new ATR 72-600. The aircraft is the first of 20 latest generation firm ATRs, plus 16 options, ordered by Malaysia Airlines in December 2012. Firefly currently operates 12 ATR 72-500s, and with the arrival of the new ATR 72-600s will almost triple its exclusively ATR 72 aircraft fleet, taking the total to over 30 aircraft.


GE’s Passport engine begins first full engine test

June 26, 2013 · 42 Views

Certification testing is underway on the first Passport development engine at GE Aviation’s Peebles Testing Operation in Ohio. The engine began ground testing on June 24th and ran for more than three hours, reaching more than 18,000 lbs. of standard day sea-level takeoff thrust. Eight Passport engines and one core will be involved in the engine certification program. Flight testing on GE’s flying testbed is scheduled for 2014. Engine certification is expected in 2015. The Passport engine certification program follows three years of validation testing. GE Aviation has conducted validation tests on the fan blisk design, including two fan blade-out rig tests, ingestion tests and a fan aero rig test to demonstrate fan efficiency. Testing is complete on the third eCore demonstrator, and GE has accumulated more than 300 hours of testing on eCore demonstrators to date.


Rolls-Royce wins order from CIT to power 23 aircraft

May 22, 2013 · 55 Views

Rolls-Royce has won an order from US leasing company CIT Aerospace for Trent XWB engines, to power ten Airbus A350 XWB aircraft and Trent 700 engines to power 13 Airbus A330 aircraft. The Trent XWB engines will power ten CIT A350 aircraft that were announced in January 2013 which were in addition to five A350 XWB aircraft already on order. The Trent XWB, specifically designed for the Airbus A350, is the fastest selling Trent engine ever, with more than 1,200 already sold. The engine variant that will power the A350-800 and -900 was awarded European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) type certification in February. The engine will power the first flight of the Airbus A350 XWB this year and the aircraft’s first in-service flight in 2014.


Novaria Group acquires Weatherford Aerospace

October 16, 2014 · 131 Views

Fort Worth-based Novaria Group announced the acquisition of substantially all the assets of Weatherford Aerospace Inc., a provider of aircraft wing skins, formed structures and unique services related to the treatment and processing of aerospace products. Novaria plans to pursue strategic growth and expansion of Weatherford’s capabilities, while also delivering enduring value to customers, employees and the aerospace industry. Weatherford’s manufacturing capabilities are focused on a wide variety of processes and products that are incorporated into most airframes flying today. The company’s customers include many major original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and tier 1 and tier 2 supply chain partners such as: Gulfstream, Boeing, Bell Helicopter, Bombardier, Lockheed Martin, Spirit and Triumph. Charles Paris, Sr., founder of Weatherford, will be retained as a consultant to the company. Charles “Chip” Paris, Jr., the current President and General Manager of Weatherford, will continue in his present capacity under Novaria’s ownership.


Royal Jordanian Air Force purchases eight Robinson R44s

October 16, 2014 · 98 Views

The Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) chose Robinson Helicopter Company’s R44 Raven II to replace its fleet of Hughes 500D helicopters that have been in service since 1981. Equipped with Garmin and Aspen glass avionics, and Bendix King’s new military KTR909 UHF transceiver, the white R44s will be used for primary helicopter training at the King Hussein Air College in Mafraq, Jordan. The first four R44s are scheduled for delivery at the end of this year with the second four to follow in early 2015. To prepare for their arrival, ten RJAF pilots have already attended Robinson’s safety course and twelve RJAF mechanics will attend the company’s maintenance course later this month.


Dallas Aeronautical Services names Vince Doherty Northeast Regional Manager

October 16, 2014 · 107 Views

Dallas Aeronautical Services (DAS) released that Vince Doherty has joined the company as Northeast Regional Manager. Doherty joins DAS with extensive aviation maintenance, regulatory, and compliance software experience. He is also very active in local and national aviation maintenance industry associations, including NBAA, LIBAA, and PAMA.


Delta Air Lines posts September quarter profi of $357m

October 16, 2014 · 99 Views

Delta’s pre-tax income for the September 2014 quarter was $1.6bn, excluding special items, an increase of $431m over the September 2013 quarter on a similar basis. Delta’s net income for the September 2014 quarter was $1.0bn and its operating margin was 15.8%, excluding special items. On a GAAP basis including special items, Delta’s pre-tax income was $579m operating margin was 7.5% and net income was $357m. Results include $384m in profit sharing expense in recognition of Delta employees’ contributions toward achieving the company’s financial goals, which makes a year-to-date profit sharing accrual of $823m. Delta generated $910m of free cash flow during the September 2014 quarter. The company used its strong cash generation in the quarter to reduce its adjusted net debt to $7.4bn and return $325m to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases.


C&L opens aircraft paint hangar

October 16, 2014 · 118 Views

C&L Aerospace, an industry leader in servicing, maintaining, and supporting carriers in the regional aviation industry, officially opened its new 17,000-ft² aircraft-paint hangar on Thursday, October 16th. The paint hangar was completed on October 1st and the first aircraft was serviced on October 3rd. The hangar is the only paint hangar of its size in the northeast. It can accommodate multiple regional and business aircraft up to 120-feet-long (approximately the size of an Embraer 170), giving C&L the ability to service all of its customers’ needs—from parts and maintenance to interiors and painting—at one facility. C&L also has an interiors shop, warehouse and a team of highly skilled maintenance technicians on-site, so all of an aircraft’s needs can be serviced in one location.


GE Aviation opens unique composites facility in Asheville, NC

October 16, 2014 · 139 Views

GE Aviation, a global leader in jet engine and aircraft system production, hosted a grand opening ceremony at the site of its new advanced composites factory near Asheville in Western North Carolina. The new 170,000-ft² facility will be the first in the world to mass produce engine components made of advanced ceramic matrix composite (CMC) materials. GE has begun hiring at the new CMC components plant. Within five years, the workforce at the plant is expected to grow to more than 340 people. The existing workforce at GE Aviation’s current machining operation in Asheville will gradually transition to the CMC components plant. The introduction of CMC components into the hot section of GE jet engines represents a significant technology breakthrough for GE and the jet propulsion industry. CMCs are made of silicon carbide ceramic fibers and ceramic resin, manufactured through a highly sophisticated process and further enhanced with proprietary coatings. GE plans to introduce more CMC components into future engine development programs. The specific CMC component to be built in the new Asheville facility is a high-pressure turbine shroud. More importantly, this CMC component will be on the best-selling LEAP jet engine, being developed by CFM International, a joint company of GE and Snecma (SAFRAN) of France and will mark the first time CMCs are used for a commercial application. The LEAP engine, which will enter airline service in 2016, will power the new Airbus A320neo, Boeing 737 MAX and COMAC (China) C919 aircraft.


RUAG Aviation upgrade improves safety and comfort of AS350

October 16, 2014 · 107 Views

A comprehensive upgrade programme has been completed by RUAG Aviation on an Airbus HelicopterAS350 B3e. The modifications performed enhance the helicopter to provide improved all-round safety and performance, as well as tailored VIP comfort in its interior. The extensive modification programme performed by RUAG Aviation provides significant advantages over the original avionics system. The AS350’s pilots are outfitted with superior situational awareness through the integration of a Garmin G500H Electronic Flight Display and an L3 ESI-2000 Standby Indicator, and benefit from standardised cockpit operations through the inclusion of a Garmin GTN650 Nav/Com Dual Installation. Together with anew instrument panel, the standardised avionics supply pilots with an improved overview and enhance efficiency in the cockpit.


Air France and representative pilot unions reach draft agreement concerning development of Transavia France

October 16, 2014 · 150 Views

Air France and the representative pilot unions have reached a draft agreement concerning the development of Transavia France.
The development of Transavia France beyond 14 Boeing 737 will be assured as from summer 2015 in order to accelerate the Group’s development on the rapidly-expanding leisure market. Pilots flying for Transavia France will be employed under Transavia France operating and remuneration conditions to ensure the company’s competitiveness and its development as a complement to the Air France network. Moreover, two co-existing contracts (Transavia France and Air France) will be implemented for Air France pilots flying for Transavia France. These terms will provide pilots with dynamic and integrated career development, including a single seniority list, in response to high expectations on the part of pilots. Any future changes in working conditions and remuneration at Transavia France will seek the agreement of the SNPL Air France ALPA and SNPL Transavia, again in response to clear demands expressed by pilots. Air France considers that this balanced solution, the result of a responsible and peaceful social dialogue, will lead to the rapid development of Transavia France and an increased value added for the benefit of its customers and staff.

This text will be presented on October 17th at the Special Board Meeting of SNPL Air France ALPA. Then it will be submitted to a referendum of its members for a signature in mid-November. The SNPL Transavia has also taken part in the talks.


Pieter Elbers appointed President and CEO of KLM

October 16, 2014 · 201 Views

Pieter Elbers has been appointed by the KLM Supervisory Board as President and Chief Executive Officer of KLM, replacing Camiel Eurlings. In view of the expiry of his current term in April 2015, Camiel Eurlings has decided in joint consultation with the KLM Supervisory Board to withdraw with immediate effect as President and CEO in order to pave the way for his successor.


Asiana offers $55m and joins a growing list of airlines settling air cargo antitrust litigation

October 16, 2014 · 137 Views

Whether it is the settlement figures or the number of airlines apparently involved in this price-fixing scandal, both figures are shocking in their size. To summarize; between January 1st 2000 and September 11th 2006, it is alleged that Asiana, along with over two dozen other airlines, conspired to fix air freight charges. In 2006, 90 lawsuits were brought against these airlines, and since then, agreements have been reached with a good number of the accused. According to the DOJ, those accused used meetings and various other forms of communication to establish cargo rates the airlines could charge for numerous routes. These airlines then subsequently adopted the agreed-upon rates and continued to hold meetings in the U.S. and a number of countries, to reinforce the price-fixing scheme.
While direct and indirect purchasers initially brought suits, the Second Circuit upheld the dismissal of indirect purchaser plaintiffs in 2012, indicating that federal aviation law pre-empted price-fixing claims made against foreign carriers based on the State’s antitrust statutes. The class action suit has been brought by direct purchasers of air freight services, in other words those predominantly involved in offering freight-forwarding services. This settlement by Asiana, the Seoul, South Korean-based airline, is dwarfed somewhat by the earlier-this-year settlements of $90m from China Airlines Ltd, $115m from Korean Airlines, $92.4m by Singapore Airlines and also $65m from Cathay Pacific, agreed back in January. To date over $800m has been agreed in settlement figures while, according to Reuters, six defendants in the class action have not agreed to settle: Air China Ltd, Air India, Air New Zealand Ltd, Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Inc, Eva Airways Corp and Nippon Cargo Airlines Ltd.


Airbus to adjust A330 production rate to nine a month

October 17, 2014 · 179 Views

Airbus has decided to adjust the production rate for its A330 Family from the current rate 10 to 9 aircraft a month in Q4 2015 as it transitions towards the A330neo. Since 2013, Airbus has been building 10 A330 Family aircraft each month, the industry’s highest ever production rate for this aircraft size category, reflecting the strong success of Airbus’ market leading widebody family. “Our role as an aircraft manufacturer is to anticipate and adapt our output to ensure we continue to maintain a smooth production flow for Airbus and for our supply chain,” said Tom Williams, Airbus’ Executive Vice President Programmes. “With the recent commercial success we’ve seen following the launch of the A330neo, in addition to the new 242 tonne weight variant and the A330 optimised for regional routes, we are confident we will sustain a steady production towards the A330neo ramp up period.”


Pratt & Whitney announces ground breaking of customer training center at Hyderabad

October 17, 2014 · 94 Views

Pratt & Whitney announced the ground breaking of its customer training center in Hyderabad. The training facility, housed in United Technologies Corporation India Private Limited (“UTC India”), is expected to be operational by mid-2015. It will train aircraft engineers and technicians of Pratt & Whitney’s customers on current and new engine models. This Pratt & Whitney training center will be the third such facility in the world. The customer engine training facility is a Pratt & Whitney initiative that addresses the shortage of skilled manpower in India’s aviation industry. Initially, training would be provided on V2500 and PW1100G-JM engines, with scope for adding other Pratt & Whitney engines flying in the region and other models from the PurePower Geared Turbofan engine family. The facility will include specialized trainings such as general familiarization, line and base maintenance and borescope inspection. It will have a capacity of 5,000 student days per year, which would gradually increase to 9,000 student days per year.


Thales flies innovative flight control solutions onboard new Gulfstream G500 and G600

October 17, 2014 · 133 Views

Thales is designing and manufacturing advanced flight control solutions for the recently unveiled Gulfstream G500 and G600 aircraft programmes. The G500 and G600’s innovative Thales-designed flight control computers are at the core of their Fly-by-Wire (FBW) systems. They will use the latest design evolution architecture, specifically developed to ensure superior performance and safety whilst reducing weight and therefore fuel consumption, optimising volume and dispatch rate. The flight computers will also interface with active control sidestick, thus making the controls more pilot-friendly. The collaboration further consolidates the relationship between Thales and Gulfstream which has already seen the development of the highly integrated FBW flight controls on the G650 aircraft.


Avincis finalizes order for two EC135 T3s with Airbus Helicopters

October 17, 2014 · 140 Views

Airbus Helicopters is proud to build on its partnership with Avincis, a Babcock International Group company, with an order for two latest-generation EC135 T3s for emergency medical service (EMS) operations. Avincis’ subsidiary Bond Air Services will operate the two aircraft, which will be delivered in the summer of 2015.


Virgin Australia posts $45.0m loss for first quarter ending 30th September 2014

October 17, 2014 · 129 Views

Virgin Australia reported an underlying loss before tax of $45.0m for the first quarter of the 2015 financial year, representing an 18.3% improvement over the prior corresponding period. The first quarter is traditionally a seasonally weaker period for Virgin Australia. Revenue increased 1.3% on the prior corresponding period. Notwithstanding the growth in high yielding passengers, the continued weakness in leisure demand resulted in Group Yield in line with prior year. Revenue load factors for the first quarter were slightly lower compared to the 2014 financial year. The business incurred restructuring charges of $8.2m and hedging ineffectiveness costs of $14.3m, reflecting the realisation of gains recognised in prior periods. Underlying Cost per Available Seat Kilometre (CASK) increased by less than 1%, delivered on the back of strong cost programs implemented during the quarter.


Heathrow Airport Holdings to sell Aberdeen, Glasgow and Southampton Airports

October 17, 2014 · 173 Views

Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited has agreed to sell its 100% interest in Aberdeen International Airport Limited, Glasgow Airport Limited and Southampton International Airport Limited to a consortium formed by Ferrovial and Macquarie for £1,048m in cash and assumed debt, payable in full at closing. At closing, the sale consideration will be increased to compensate Heathrow for the time delay between today and the closing date. In addition, the sale is subject to EU merger regulation clearance. John Holland-Kaye, Chief Executive of Heathrow, said: “Aberdeen, Glasgow and Southampton airports and their people have been part of our company for a long time. They are great airports and we are proud of their achievements. We wish the new owners and our airport colleagues every success and are confident the airports will continue to flourish. This sale enables us to focus on improving Heathrow for passengers and winning support for Heathrow expansion. Heathrow is the UK’s only hub airport, connecting the whole of the UK to the world and bringing economic benefits locally and nationally.” The sale is expected to close no later than January 2015.


AHS Aviation Handling Services GmbH selects Rockwell Collins’ ARINC AviNet Enterprise Hub messaging service

October 17, 2014 · 148 Views

AHS Aviation Handling Services GmbH has selected the Rockwell Collins’ ARINC AviNet Enterprise Hub (eHub) as its cloud-based messaging service. AHS Aviation Handling Services GmbH, one of Germany’s leading agents, provides a full range of airline passenger handling and operations services for over 130 airlines in Germany. The company is using ARINC AviNet eHub as the message platform for all of its operational messaging needs. ARINC AviNet eHub meets all IATA standards for aviation messaging. As a cloud-based service, it requires no expensive internal server installation or software licensing fees and offers free local traffic routing, reducing operational costs.


Virgin Australia buys full control of ailing Tiger Australia Airways

October 17, 2014 · 168 Views

How times can change in just over 14 months. In June 2013 Virgin Australia paid the substantial sum of AUD$35m for a 60% equity stake in Tiger Australia Airways, then wholly owned by Tiger Airways Singapore, a 40% of which was then owned by Singapore Airlines. Move forward to today and the remaining 40% of Tiger Australia Airways has been sold to Virgin Australia for the princely sum of AUD$1.00. The reason? As described by Virgin Australia “ongoing subdued consumer demand in the Australian domestic market”.
Airlines operating in that region are losing money hand over fist and this move is not so that Virgin Australia can expand their fleet, but instead take control of the whole Tiger Australia Airways and streamline the operation. Over the year, Virgin’s holding in Tiger produced losses of AUD$46 million. For the quarter to September 30, Virgin’s losses from Tiger increased to AUD$11.6 million. At the same time, on Friday Tiger Airways Singapore also reported heavy losses, and said Singapore Airlines would be raising its stake to 55%.
In a curious twist of economics and the ‘supply and demand’ effect on prices, Virgin Australia and Qantas are adopting a clever new strategy after each successfully shot themselves in the foot during a recent price war while the economy faltered. After losing a combined AUD$2.63bn both carriers have decided to limit the availability of seats on domestic flights in an attempt to drive prices upwards – a clever tactic that neatly avoids any hint of ‘price fixing’. John Borghetti, Virgin Australia’s Chief Executive confidently stated: “Under this proposed transaction, we will benefit from the economies of scale and achieve profitability ahead of schedule by the end of 2016″.