Wednesday, December 03, 2014
AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert
This is an overview of all articles linked within the selected daily newsletter.
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December 2, 2014 · 195 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.
February 20, 2015 · 542 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.
February 20, 2015 · 640 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.
November 5, 2014 · 162 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.
March 25, 2014 · 111 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.
March 7, 2014 · 78 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.
February 26, 2014 · 78 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).
January 29, 2014 · 74 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.
January 9, 2014 · 65 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.
July 5, 2013 · 64 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.
June 26, 2013 · 40 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.
May 22, 2013 · 53 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.
December 2, 2014 · 281 Views
OEMServices has launched an important extension program and has moved to a brand new facility of 6.500 m² (70,000 ft²) connected to CDG Airport. Fully adapted to OEMServices customer’s requirements, the new center integrates the AOG and distribution services, as well as customer front desk teams. “OEMServices has significantly grown over the past few years and has important ambitions for further development. This new innovating infrastructure enables us to enhance our development and will keep on bringing more flexibility and new solutions for our customers. In France, this center will be combined with the existing Paris centers facilities : our logistics office with direct access to CDG airside, for quick and efficient customs clearance and air transportation services, and our legacy service center at Orly Airport, dedicated to flow coordination and local services.” said Didier Granger, President of OEMServices. The company is a joint venture founded by four major OEMs: Diehl Aerospace, Liebherr Aerospace, Thales and Zodiac Aerospace. Since 1973, OEMServices has become a leader in AOG and logistic services dedicated to the aerospace industry, as well as component services dedicated to airlines. OEMServices is offering a wide range of solutions through its worldwide service centers network: Paris, Singapore, Dubai, New York and Moscow.
December 2, 2014 · 185 Views
Panasonic Avionics is providing critical communications on board a high-tech flying hospital used to transport Ebola patients from Africa to overseas care facilities. An Airbus A340-300 aircraft, which is chartered from Lufthansa by the German Foreign office, has been converted into a hospital aircraft with isolation chambers for patients diagnosed as suffering from the disease. The aircraft is equipped with Panasonic’s eXConnect system, offering the on-board crew and medical staff direct Wi-fi internet access and email services for essential air-to-ground communications during the emergency flights. The flights will be operated by volunteer pilots and flight attendants and will be available for any country which needs to transport Ebola patients. The aircraft is due to be available for its missions starting in December. The number of fatalities from the virus has now surpassed 5,400.
December 2, 2014 · 586 Views
Transaero’s financial results under Russian Accounting Standards for the first three quarters of 2014 saw revenue from air operations increase by 6% in comparison with the same period of 2013 and reach RUB84.8bn (US$2.4bn). The airline’s cost reduction programme adopted in 2012 has delivered savings in the first three quarters of 2014, with selling costs reduced by 8% and administrative costs reduced by 15%. Despite the negative external factors including the requirement to bypass Ukraine when operating transit flights, Transaero’s profit from sales increased by 63% and reached RUB6.7bn (US$188.8m). The airline’s net profit reached RUB130m (US$3.7m). The airline has reached this result despite the significant growth of foreign exchange and forward operations losses, which amounted to RUB1.6bn (US$46.8m) in the first nine months of 2014; as a comparison foreign exchange and forward operations losses in the first nine months of 2013 were 266 million RUB (US$8.4m). The balance-sheet total reached RUB123bn (US$3.1bn).
December 2, 2014 · 107 Views
The African Business Aviation Association, AfBAA, has signed a memorandum of understanding with Jet Support Services, Inc. (JSSI), the provider of hourly cost maintenance programs for the Business Aviation industry, to raise awareness of the importance of adopting best practices in aircraft maintenance. The strategic agreement, which was ratified at this year’s National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) meeting, will see both parties cooperating in promoting awareness of programme options to enable best practice across the aviation maintenance sector. Under the terms of the agreement AfBAA members will receive financial, educational and business benefits when enrolling aircraft onto JSSI Programmes. In addition JSSI will provide a variety of tools and incentives to promote the adoption of certain industry “best practices” including the adoption of hourly cost maintenance progammes for executive aircraft, engines and Auxiliary Power Units (APU). It is anticipated that through encouraging the adoption of hourly cost maintenance programmes, the perception of Business Aviation as an efficient and safe mode of transportation in Africa will be improved.
December 2, 2014 · 112 Views
NetJets, a Berkshire Hathaway company and the worldwide leader in private aviation, took delivery of its 50th Signature Series aircraft. This is the third Challenger 350 to enter the fleet since June – the first one was delivered on June 28th, 2014. NetJets has orders with several aircraft manufacturers for up to 670 new state-of-the-art jets– representing the largest purchase in private aviation history. All of these new custom aircraft will be NetJets Signature Series jets. With the delivery of the latest Challenger 350, NetJets will have accepted 16 Bombardier Global 5000s and Global 6000s, 31 Phenom 300s, and three Challenger 350s.
December 2, 2014 · 95 Views
Delta reported that November traffic increase 5% compared to the previous year, while capacity increased 3.6% year over year. The load factor for November was 80.6%, up 1.2 points, compared to November 2013.
December 2, 2014 · 128 Views
Azul, Brazil’s largest airline by number of cities served, commemorated its first international flight on December 2nd, landing at Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport. Fort Lauderdale, and the US itself, marks Azul’s first international route. Since its debut six years ago on December 15th, 2008, Azul has flown more than 100 million customers, changing the face of competition in the Brazilian domestic aviation market. The airline’s 145-aircraft fleet currently operates one-third of Brazil’s daily departures with more than 850 flights, serving 105 destinations throughout Brazil. From its new $1.5bn terminal at Sao Paulo/Campinas International Airport, located 60 minutes from the city, Azul conveniently connects to popular destinations including Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte, Brasilia, Salvador and Iguacu Falls.
December 2, 2014 · 548 Views
Avolon Holdings launched its initial public offering of 13,636,363 common shares. The initial public offering price is currently expected to be between $21 and $23 per share, which would result in a total offering size of between US$86m and US$314m. All of the common shares are being offered by the selling shareholders. The selling shareholders have granted the underwriters an option to purchase up to 2,045,455 additional common shares to cover over-allotments, if any. Avolon will not receive any of the proceeds from the offering. The offering is being made pursuant to a registration statement on Form F-1 filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). Avolon has been approved to list its common shares on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “AVOL”.
December 2, 2014 · 120 Views
Lufthansa is resuming flights to Florida from its Munich hub. Starting December 2014, the airline will operate five flights a week to the Sunshine State in addition to its daily A380 service from Frankfurt. During the winter months, Miami will be served by LH Flight 460, which will be operated with an Airbus A330-300 in the new First, Business and Economy Class layout, which can accommodate 217 passengers. “We are delighted to be able to offer our passengers our latest product in all travel classes on flights to and from Miami and to provide a high level of travel comfort,” says Thomas Klühr, member of the Lufthansa German Airlines Board, Finances & Hub Munich.
December 2, 2014 · 693 Views
Bell Helicopter named Matthew J. Hasik executive vice president, Commercial Business. Hasik will lead the combined Commercial Sales and Marketing and Commercial Programs organization. Hasik succeeds Danny Maldonado, a 24-year company veteran who has been selected to be president and CEO of Textron Financial. Additionally, Barry Kohler has been named executive vice president, Customer Service and Support, replacing Eric Cardinali who has been selected to lead global operations for Textron’s Kautex business unit. Kohler has led Bell Helicopter’s Mirabel assembly center as president of Bell Helicopter Textron Canada since 2009.
December 2, 2014 · 226 Views
Bombardier Commercial Aircraft extended its current ATP Agreement with FlightSafety International, for 10 years. Under the ATP Agreement, FlightSafety uses a Bombardier-approved syllabus to deliver high-quality flight and technical training to operators of Q100, Q200, Q300 and Q400 aircraft. For over 28 years, FlightSafety has been a dedicated training provider, collaborating with us to train our Q-Series aircraft customers – always upholding our mutual commitment to put customers first and provide non-stop care,” said Todd Young, Vice President, Customer Services, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. “We’re proud to confirm our long-term collaboration and are confident that FlightSafety’s global network of simulators will continue to offer operators Bombardier-approved training close to their home bases.” FlightSafety’s Toronto Learning Centre, which is co-located with Bombardier’s aircraft manufacturing site, continues to be the lead facility for Q-Series aircraft training with four simulators on hand. Other Q-Series aircraft simulators are located in Seattle, WA; St Louis, MO; Atlanta, GA; Farnborough, United Kingdom; Johannesburg, South Africa and Tokyo, Japan.