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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert

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

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.


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

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.


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.


GECAS delivers new leased Boeing 777-300ER to Ethiopian Airlines

January 27, 2014 · 25 Views

GE Capital Aviation Services delivered a new leased Boeing 777-300ER aircraft to Ethiopian Airlines. The new aircraft comes from GECAS’ existing order book with Boeing and is part of the airline’s ongoing ambitious fleet expansion plans.


SINTERS AMERICA receives AS 9100 C and ISO 9001:2008 Certificate of Registration

January 27, 2014 · 24 Views

SINTERS AMERICA has been audited and received AS 9100 C and ISO 9001:2008 Certificate of Registration in December 16, 2013. Headquartered in Boucherville and member of AéroMontréal and CRIAQ, SINTERS AMERICA INC. is an Automated Test Equipment integrator providing end-to-end solutions to the aerospace industry and a Ground Support Equipment (GSE) manufacturer providing tow bars, motor mounts and aircraft maintenance tooling (Airbus and Boeing).


Lion Group chooses CFM56-5B to power A320ceo fleet

January 27, 2014 · 12 Views

Lion Group has selected CFM International’s CFM56-5B engine to power 60 firm Airbus A320ceo (current engine option) aircraft. The agreement is valued at more than US$1.2bn at list price. The aircraft order was announced in March 2013. Jakarta, Indonesia-based Lion Group has been a CFM customer since the year 2000 and recently took delivery of its 100th CFM56-7B-powered Boeing 737 aircraft.


Flying Colours Corp. to achieve full CAAC approval

January 27, 2014 · 22 Views

Flying Colours Corp., the Canada-based maintenance, completions, and refurbishments specialists, reported that it has become the first Canadian MRO to receive complete airframe and specialized service CCAR 145 MOC, (China Civil Aviation Regulations 145 Maintenance Organization Certificate), approval from the Civil Aviation Administration of China, the CAAC. The certificate, which was awarded on January 10th, 2014, is awarded to foreign companies that already hold their own national CAA approvals and complements the growing list of approvals held by the Peterborough based business. The approval enables Flying Colours Corp. to conduct full airframe inspections, repairs and scheduled maintenance, along with specialised services including sheet metal work, composite repairs, paintwork, interior completions and modifications on Chinese registered aircraft at its expanding Peterborough, Ontario facility. The initial airframes approved for work include the complete family of Bombardier Global Express aircraft (BD-700-1A10), the Bombardier Challenger (CL 600-2B16) models, and the Challenger 850 type. Flying Colours Corp. will continue to add to the model types listed as customer demand requires.


Boeing, Modern Logistics sign agreement for flight solutions

January 27, 2014 · 16 Views

Boeing and Modern Logistics, a new integrated logistics services provider based in São Paulo, Brazil, have signed an agreement to provide Jeppesen flight solutions that will help the new company launch its air-cargo transport service this year. Modern Logistics has signed to use a full complement of services from Boeing subsidiary Jeppesen, a part of Boeing Digital Aviation. The services include electronic and paper charting, NavData, electronic flight bag, flight planning and OpsData. These tools will allow the company to efficiently schedule its flights, plan routes and calculate aircraft runway performance, providing flight crews more real-time digital access to key flight information and resources, such as dynamic charts and navigation utilities, which will reduce pilot workload, improve situational awareness, safety and operational efficiency.


AFI KLM E&M steps up cooperation with Myanmar Airways International

January 27, 2014 · 30 Views

Myanmar Airways International (MAI) recently inked an exclusive contract with AFI KLM E&M to provide engine support for the CFM56-5B power plants equipping its fleet of A320 family aircraft. MAI is part of Myanmar’s leading financial corporation KBZ Group, which also launched the domestic carrier Air KBZ in 2011. Partnership between the two companies dates back to July 2012, when MAI chose to entrust to the MRO the component support of its fleet of A320.


ATK and Airbus finalize agreement on A350 XWB-1000 variant

January 27, 2014 · 28 Views

ATK (ATK) has finalized an agreement with Airbus to manufacture and supply composite stringers and frames on the –1000 variant of the A350 XWB program. The contract expansion adds to the work already being performed on the A350 XWB program. This agreement is the next step in ATK’s valuable working relationship with Airbus and its partners, Aerolia SAS and Premium Aerotec GmbH. ATK is currently producing composite stringers and frames for the A350 XWB-900 and has successfully delivered more than 10,000 parts since the inception of the program. These parts – the equivalent of more than 15 ship sets – are a demonstration of ATK’s ability to meet customers’ high quality standards and delivery requirements, and ATK is ready to meet planned production rate increases. The A350 XWB work is performed at ATK’s Aircraft Commercial Center of Excellence (ACCE) facility in Clearfield, Utah. This contract expansion will allow ATK to hire additional professional and manufacturing employees, adding to Utah’s job market.


DHL Express extends Boeing 777 flying with Southern Air

January 27, 2014 · 18 Views

Southern Air is extending its partnership with DHL Express, a leading international air express delivery provider, through a new Flight Services Agreement for the continued operation of four 777 freighters that Southern Air currently flies in support of DHL’s international air express network. With this contract extension, in connection with DHL’s simultaneous 10-year aircraft lease agreement, Southern Air and DHL enter into a new, long-term cooperative agreement for the four 777 freighters.


Satena and Barfield extend ATR support agreement

January 27, 2014 · 21 Views

Barfield, a Sabena technics company, started supporting the SATENA ATR fleet in December 2010 through its Airline programs business unit, dedicated to full support contracts. The services provided to the Colombian airline include component and engineering support, pool access and Main Base inventory for a total fleet of 10 aircraft supported by Barfield. Within the scope of this extension, Barfield will increase the Main Base for components in order to fit SATENA’s requirements for its fleet expansion. For the past few years, SATENA, owned by the Colombian government, has been undergoing strong fleet modernization, integrating aircraft types such as ATR42-500 and ATR72-500.


Indian Ministry of Civil Aviation approves operations of Airbus A380 in India

January 27, 2014 · 19 Views

Airbus welcomes the news that the Indian Ministry of Civil Aviation has approved the operations of the Airbus A380 in India. A booming economy, a growing middle class, migration, urbanisation and tourism are all factors pushing India to become one of the world’s fastest growing aviation markets. Larger aircraft like the A380 combined with higher load factors make the most efficient use of limited airport slots and contribute to rising passenger numbers without additional flights to capture this growth. As recently confirmed by London’s Heathrow Airport, Europe’s busiest A380 airport, the Airbus A380 lets airports maximise efficiency and revenue potential by offering more passenger seats with the same number of flights.


Manoj Papa appointed CEO of Air Seychelles

January 28, 2014 · 22 Views

Air Seychelles reported the appointment of Manoj Papa as its new Chief Executive Officer. He succeeds Cramer Ball, who has tendered his resignation. Mr Papa joins from South African Airways, where he held the position of Acting General Manager Commercial, overseeing the entire commercial portfolio for the airline. As part of this, he was also instrumental in developing the long term turnaround strategy for SAA.


China Southern Airlines takes delivery of two leased Boeing 737-800s from GECAS

January 28, 2014 · 27 Views

GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) delivered two new leased Boeing 737-800 aircraft to China Southern Airlines. These are the first of 10 new Boeing 737-800s scheduled for delivery in 2014 on lease from GECAS as part of the airline’s fleet renewal program. The 10 aircraft come from GECAS’ existing order book with Boeing.


SSJ100 will start operations on US routes

January 28, 2014 · 23 Views

Mexican airline Interjet confirmed to have achieved all the necessary Authority approvals to fly the SSJ100 on routes from Mexico to North America, planning to serve new US destinations in the next months. “This is another brilliant achievement for Interjet and for the SSJ100. As promised, we are opening new routes taking advantage of the SSJ100 overall performances which will soon begin to fly to the US for the first time” says Mr. Miguel Aleman Magnani, Executive President of Interjet.


Air Transat orders Aviation Partners Boeing Split Scimitar Winglets for Next-Generation 737-800s

January 28, 2014 · 30 Views

Air Transat has ordered Split Scimitar Winglets for its fleet of Boeing Next Generation 737-800 aircraft. APB’s newest program is the culmination of a five year design effort using the latest computational fluid dynamic technology to redefine the aerodynamics of the Blended Winglet into an all-new Split Scimitar Winglet. The unique feature of the Split Scimitar Winglet is that it uses the existing Blended Winglet structure, but adds new strengthened spars, aerodynamic scimitar tips, and a large ventral strake. APB looks forward to receiving FAA certification for Split Scimitar Winglets within the next several days. APB will develop and certify the Split Scimitar Winglet System for several variants of the Boeing Next Generation 737 series of aircraft including the structurally provisioned and non-provisioned 737-700, 737-800, 737-BBJ, the structurally provisioned 737-900 and the 737-900ER.


American Airlines Group reports fourth quarter and full year 2013 results

January 28, 2014 · 17 Views

For the fourth quarter 2013, AAG reported a GAAP net loss of $2.0bn, which includes $2.4bn of net special charges. This compares to a net profit of $262m, which includes $350m of net special credits in the fourth quarter 2012. AAG’s GAAP financial results include the results for US Airways only for the period from the completion of the merger on Dec. 9, 2013 through Dec. 31, 2013. For full year 2013, GAAP net loss was $1.8bn, which includes $3.1bn of net special charges. This compares to a full year 2012 net loss of $1.9bn, which includes $1.7bn of net special charges.
Fourth quarter 2013 combined net profit was $436m on a non-GAAP basis excluding net special charges. This compares to a combined non-GAAP net loss of $42m excluding net special credits for the same period in 2012. For 2013, the company’s combined net profit was $1.9bn on a non-GAAP basis excluding net special charges. This represents a $1.5bn improvement over the company’s combined 2012 non-GAAP net profit of $407m excluding net special charges.


A350 XWB MSN3 commences cold weather testing in Iqaluit, Canada

January 28, 2014 · 33 Views

Airbus’ A350 XWB MSN3 development aircraft with a team of 48 Airbus specialists have arrived at Iqaluit, Canada for several days of cold weather trials. The various tests for the aircraft its engines and its systems include a ‘cold soak’ down to minus double-digit temperatures. The scope of the trials include: APU and engine starts after cold soak; verification of system behaviour; low-speed taxi and rejected take-offs; thrust-reverser tests with snow. This latest phase of the development test programme comes only days after MSN3’s completion of the “hot-and-high” tests in Bolivia. Since the A350 XWB’s first flight with MSN1 on June 14th 2013, over 890 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.