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Saturday, September 28, 2013

AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert

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Emirates reject Delta’s apology regarding Anderson’s 9/11 comments

February 20, 2015 · 541 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 · 639 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 · 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.


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

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.


Air France-KLM selects GEnx engines for Boeing 787 fleet

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.


ILFC closes $1.5bn senior secured term loan

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.


Airbus Commercial reports another year of financial improvement

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).


Boeing Commercial Airplanes reports full year revenue of $53bn

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.


A350 XWB in Bolivia for high altitude testing

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.


Firefly welcomes first ATR 72-600

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.


GE’s Passport engine begins first full engine test

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.


Rolls-Royce wins order from CIT to power 23 aircraft

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.


AJW Aviation launches Fleet Management Services

September 26, 2013 · 36 Views

AJW Aviation is extending its capabilities to provide full fleet technical management as part of its comprehensive range of integrated aircraft support services. It has appointed CAMO4jets AG, the Basel based aircraft maintenance control specialists, to partner the Company in the delivery of a total support solution for existing and new customers. “The provision of FMS is a cornerstone of AJW’s expansion programme and it was vital for us to identify the right partner to match our current client’s requirements, and have the scope to fulfil some of the larger contracts that we have in the pipeline. CAMO4jets was chosen as our partner provider because of their wide-ranging expertise” explains Deepak Sharma, AJW Group Technical Director. “They enable AJW to offer our customers an expert service from day one with EASA Part M Sub Part G & Sub Part I approvals and their ability to issue certifications across a wide range of aircraft types up to Airbus A380 .” AJW Aviation is now able to offer a multi-specialist Fleet Management Service that offers Continuous Airworthiness Management of aircraft, airworthiness reviews, export/import registration, audits, inspections, preparation of work packs, full planning and maintenance control. It will meet the challenging demands of operators seeking to align costs with continuously improving the efficiency and reliability of global operations.


Globus entrusts Boeing 737 NG APUs to Epcor

September 26, 2013 · 14 Views

EPCOR, AFI KLM E&M’s pneumatic systems and APU subsidiary, has signed a contract with Russian carrier Globus. The long-term agreement covers the repair and overhaul of the GTCP 131-9B type Auxiliary Power Units (APUs) equipping the carrier’s fleet of Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft. Globus had already called on the services of AFI KLM E&M in the framework of an engine support contract for this same fleet.


AFI KLM E&M to maintain test aircraft for Safran

September 26, 2013 · 30 Views

AFI KLM E&M has been selected by Safran to support its test aircraft used to develop new systems. The contract includes maintenance of the aircraft during the test phases performed by Safran and all Part 145 modification embodiment and maintenance work.


Etihad Airways opens new European headquarters

September 26, 2013 · 14 Views

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has unveiled its new European headquarters in Berlin, enhancing the airline’s presence in the German domestic market and further cementing its strategic relationship with airberlin. Located in the heart of Berlin’s historic Potsdamer Platz, the new office houses both Etihad Airways’ European and Germany sales and marketing teams, and includes joint Etihad Airways-airberlin reservation and ticketing counters. In total, 35 Etihad Airways employees will work in the new facility, 25 of whom are German, with the rest coming from the UAE, the Netherlands, Egypt, India, Italy, Pakistan, Morocco, the UK, and Switzerland.


AEI redelivers fourth ASL B737-400SF 11 pallet conversion

September 26, 2013 · 18 Views

Aeronautical Engineers (AEI) reported the redelivery of the fourth B737-400SF aircraft to the ASL Aviation Group. The aircraft is being ferried to Dublin where it will enter service with Air Contractors. This is the fourth of six contracted freighter conversions undergoing modification at Commercial Jet’s (CJI) Miami and Dothan facilities. N286AL, MSN 25261 is a high gross weight B737-400SF 11 Pallet freighter and has a maximum range of about 2,800 nm and the ability to carry payloads of up to 48,000 lbs. ASL has reported exceptional in service reliability on the first three AEI B737-400SF’s.


Air Lease Corporation announces placement of one Boeing 737-800 with Ukraine International Airlines

September 26, 2013 · 30 Views

Air Lease Corporation announced a long term lease agreement with Ukraine International Airlines for one new Boeing 737-800 aircraft with winglets, “sky” interior, and powered by CFM56-7B engines, which is scheduled for delivery in April 2015.


EADS North America to provide support and service to four CN235 Maritime Patrol Aircraft for Mexican Navy

September 26, 2013 · 19 Views

EADS North America will deliver contractor logistics support and service (CLSS) to four CN235-300 Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) for Mexican Navy. The CLSS contract consists of one base year with four one-year options. The contract includes a field service representative to provide on-site technical support, management of parts and depot maintenance. EADS North America delivered the four Airbus Military CN235-300 MPAs to the Mexican Navy in 2011 and 2012 under a U.S. Coast Guard managed foreign military sales agreement. The CN235-300 MPAs enhance Mexico’s ability to support the Mérida Initiative, a cooperative security arrangement between the U.S., Mexico and Central American countries. The aircraft’s missions include homeland security, search and rescue, military readiness, cargo and personnel transport, drug interdiction and maritime environmental protection.


Garuda Indonesia starts taking delivery of new A330-300 fleet

September 26, 2013 · 23 Views

Garuda Indonesia, the national carrier of Indonesia, has taken the delivery of the first of its new fleet of 18 A330-300s at a special ceremony in Toulouse on September 26th. The new aircraft will form a major element in the airline’s fleet modernisation programme and are powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines. The airline’s new A330-300s feature a two class premium layout, with 36 seats that convert to full flat beds in Business Class and an extra spacious Economy cabin with an average seat pitch of 33-34 inches. Garuda Indonesia will operate the aircraft from its hubs in Jakarta and Denpasar (Bali) to destinations across Asia, the Middle East and the Pacific. The aircraft will join an existing Airbus fleet at the airline that currently includes 10 recently acquired A330-200s, used primarily on long range routes, and six early version A330-300s flying on domestic and shorter regional services.


PPG Aerospace names Scott and Hood to global transparencies posts

September 27, 2013 · 26 Views

PPG Industries’ aerospace transparencies group has named Arthur C. Scott global market director for commercial transparencies and Mark Hood global market director for general aviation transparencies, both based at PPG’s Huntsville, Ala., facility. Scott had been global director for general aviation transparencies since 2010 and succeeds James Romano, who was appointed business manager for the PPG Aerospace Los Angeles application support center (ASC). Mark Hood joined PPG in 1984 at the Huntsville production facility, where he worked in product support engineering before heading the assembly cell. Most recently he was OEM (original equipment manufacturer) market segment manager for commercial transparencies covering Canadian, South American and European airframe customers.


The SIMMAD awards maintenance contract for France’s Eurocopter Puma helicopters to Sabena technics

September 27, 2013 · 1 View

The SIMMAD (Integrated structure in charge of the Maintenance in Operational Condition of the Defense’s aeronautical equipment) announced that Sabena technics, a leading independent MRO provider, will carry out the periodic and major checks of France’s Puma helicopters. This contract is part of Sabena technics’ commitment to broaden its range of services, which until now were aimed at civil and military aircraft, to all types of helicopters. Benefiting from the experience of Sabena, AOM and TAT operators, which shaped Sabena technics Group, as well as from its knowledge of military needs, the company has implemented nose-to-tail solutions for its civil and military customers, based on economic efficiency and fleet availability. The Puma’s first major check will start in November 2013 on the site of Sabena technics DNR (Dinard, France) and eventually, this contract could involve over a hundred helicopters.


Avolon announces pricing of $636m Fixed Rate Asset Backed Notes by Emerald Aviation Finance

September 27, 2013 · 17 Views

Avolon Aerospace Leasing, the international aircraft lessor, announces that Emerald Aviation Finance Limited (the ’Issuer’), a newly established special purpose company, priced a total of US$636,210,000 of Fixed Rate Asset Backed Notes (the ‘Issue’), the proceeds of which will be used by the Issuer to acquire a fleet of 20 aircraft (the ‘Initial Aircraft’) from Avolon or certain of its affiliates. Avolon expects to use the net proceeds of the sale of the Initial Aircraft to refinance existing debt. The Issue will comprise US$546,000,000 of 4.65% Class A-1 Fixed Rate Asset Backed Notes and US$90,210,000 of 6.35% Class B-1 Fixed Rate Asset Backed Notes (together, the ‘Initial Notes’). Avolon will acquire the junior Class E Note issued by the Issuer. The transaction is expected to close on or about 16 October 2013. As of 15 September, 2013, the Initial Aircraft were leased to 15 lessees based in 14 countries. The Initial Aircraft will comprise a mix of narrowbody, widebody and regional jets with an average age of 3.07 years. Avolon will act as servicer with respect to the Initial Aircraft and any additional aircraft acquired by the Issuer.


Boeing Shanghai signs first 777 heavy maintenance contract

September 27, 2013 · 17 Views

Boeing Shanghai Aviation Services has been awarded its first 777 heavy maintenance contract through an agreement with Russia-based Orenair. Boeing Shanghai will perform a C-check on one of Orenair’s 777-200ERs in October 2013. Boeing Shanghai received U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and European Aviation Safety Agency authorization to conduct 777 maintenance services in 2012. The maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) company has previously completed several cabin reconfigurations and multiple A-checks on 777-300s for other customers.


WestJet finalizes definitive purchase agreement for Boeing 737 MAX aircraft

September 27, 2013 · 22 Views

WestJet has entered into a definitive purchase agreement for 65 737 MAX aircraft from Boeing. This order was previously announced on August 29, 2013 as a letter of intent to purchase. This purchase agreement includes commitments for 25 MAX 7 and 40 MAX 8 aircraft with substitution rights to the 737 MAX 9, with deliveries scheduled from 2017 through 2027. As previously announced, the airline will substitute 15 of its existing Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft orders currently scheduled to deliver between December 2014 and 2018, with Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, for a net increase of 50 committed deliveries to its fleet plan.


AAR to add third line of maintenance at Duluth MRO

September 27, 2013 · 24 Views

AAR has ramped up a third line of maintenance to support Air Canada’s fleet of commercial aircraft as part of a multiyear agreement to perform maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) at its Duluth repair station. The expansion solidifies AAR’s position in the region and moves the Company closer to its goal of employing as many as 225 people at the facility. The Company currently employs 276 and has 40 openings. AAR reopened the once-abandoned hangar last November with one line of maintenance and added a second line of maintenance in March for the commercial carrier.