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Saturday, February 08, 2014

AviTrader Daily Aviation News

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.


CIRCOR Aerospace selects Chris Reuther for Vice President of Finance

February 6, 2014 · 36 Views

CIRCOR Aerospace & Defense, a division of CIRCOR International, has selected Chris Reuther as Group Vice President of Finance based in Corona, CA. He will have division enterprise-wide oversight for controls and compliance, financial planning and analysis, strategic planning, operations planning, pricing and proposals, general accounting and financial reporting. Reuther joins CIRCOR with over 15 years of experience from United Technologies Corporation (UTC) where he worked within the finance organization for several different subsidiaries of UTC. In his most current role at Sikorsky Aerospace Services, he held the position of Lead Manager of Financial Planning and Analysis.


Pemco redelivers first of two 737-400 Combi aircraft to First Air

February 6, 2014 · 10 Views

PEMCO World Air Services (PEMCO) announced the redelivery of a 737-400 Combi aircraft to First Air, the first of two conversion projects for the Ottawa headquartered carrier. This versatile, PEMCO-built Combi will be used primarily within Northern Canada, providing a unique combination of cargo and passenger services. The 737-400 Combi is capable of simultaneously carrying four and a half pallets of freight and 72 passengers. The functional capability of this converted aircraft makes it ideal for accomplishing unique and difficult missions for First Air.


Air Canada reports January load factor of 80%

February 6, 2014 · 16 Views

For the month of January, Air Canada reported a system load factor of 80.0, versus 79.4% in January 2013, an increase of 0.6 points on a system-wide capacity increase of 3.0%. On this additional capacity, system traffic for January increased 3.7%.  Air Canada reports traffic results on a system-wide basis, including Air Canada rouge, which began operations on July 1, 2013, and regional airlines from which Air Canada purchases capacity.


Southwest Airlines reports January traffic

February 6, 2014 · 14 Views

Southwest Airlines released that traffic in January 2014 increased 2.2% compared to January 2013, while capacity decreased 2.6% from the January 2013 level. The load factor was 76.3%, compared to 72.7% in January 2013.


SAS posts traffic for January 2014

February 6, 2014 · 16 Views

SAS reported traffic increase of o.8%, compared to the previous year, while capacity was up 3.0%. The SAS scheduled load factor decreased 1.4 points to 63.6%.


Aviation Partners Boeing receives FAA certification for Split Scimitar winglets

February 6, 2014 · 60 Views

Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) has received Supplemental Type Certification (STC) from the FAA for Split Scimitar Winglets to be installed on Boeing 737-800 aircraft. The Split Scimitar Winglet 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 will develop and certify the Split Scimitar Winglet modification for all of the Boeing 737-700, 800 and 900 series aircraft including Boeing Business Jets. APB expects to start certification flight testing on the 737-900ER in mid-February achieving certification by late July 2014.


Delta appoints Luciano Macagno as Director for Brazil

February 6, 2014 · 17 Views

Delta Air Lines has named Luciano Macagno as Director for Brazil, responsible for leading Delta’s commercial operations in the fourth-largest global aviation market in the world. Luciano joins Delta from LATAM Airlines where, until recently, he served as Head of International Sales and Marketing for Brazil.


Fokker Services announces restructuring measures

February 6, 2014 · 26 Views

Fokker Services B.V. announced a package of restructuring measures to address the changing conditions of the Fokker aircraft maintenance, logistics and parts availability market it is operating in. The measures include a significant reduction of staff in The Netherlands, as well as cost reduction and operational improvements plans. The measures are designed to enhance growth in new (other than Fokker platform) segments and to increase efficiency. Fokker Services saw its operational EBIT decreasing in 2013 to €4m from €9.9m in 2012. The management of Fokker Services informed employees, the Works Council and the labor organizations about the restructuring, which includes a job loss of 200 FTEs divided over its Dutch locations Hoofddorp, Oude Meer and Woensdrecht. Fokker Services employs around 930 FTEs, of which around 730 in The Netherlands. All intended (200) redundancies will involve the Dutch organization.


SR Technics opens for business in Malaysia

February 6, 2014 · 28 Views

SR Technics has successfully ramped-up the start of operations at its new Center of Excellence for component maintenance in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The first components to undergo repair include hydraulic pumps, ballscrew actuators, power drive units and audio control panels. The repair facility will initially support around 300 part numbers, rising to 1,200 by the end of 2014. It will be equipped to handle many labor-intensive repairs, covering five main product areas: avionics panels, hydraulics, mechanical, pneumatics and electrical. The location will initially operate under European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) approval. Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) Malaysia approval should be secured in February and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval is planned for April. Further approvals from other national aviation authorities will be secured later this year. In addition, Malaysia will also become the base for the company’s Regional Customer Service and Distribution Centers for its Asia Pacific-based Integrated Component Services (ICS) customers, managing all their component supply needs. These are scheduled to become operational in Q1 and Q2 respectively. The new set-up in Kuala Lumpur is part of the overall strategy to develop a comprehensive global operational footprint, designed to place the company close to its customers.
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New additions at Pacific Aerospace

February 6, 2014 · 30 Views

PART (Pacific Aerospace Resources and Technologies), an ARC Aerospace Industries Company, began hiring A & P mechanics, structure specialists, and avionics personnel in January and into the month of February. As their hangar space fills up, PART is eager to expand their work force into multiple shifts. PART is in the process of a complete composite and accessory shop overhaul. They are adding filtered air, positive pressure, temperature and humidity control, and drop-down vacuum lines. Furthermore, their NDT capabilities have expanded into those of a level 3 facility to include liquid penetrant, di-penetrant, eddy current, and ultrasound testing. PART, located in Victorville, California was acquired by ARC Aerospace Industries, in 2013. PART provides Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul services for Airbus, Boeing, Embraer, and other leading manufacturers.


HAECO completes acquisition of TIMCO Aviation Services

February 7, 2014 · 9 Views

Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company (HAECO) has completed its previously announced acquisition of TIMCO Aviation Services (TIMCO). With the completion of the transaction, TIMCO will be a wholly-owned subsidiary of HAECO, creating one of the world’s leading airframe MRO service providers based on scope of services and products offered. HAECO and TIMCO together will provide customers with an enhanced range of capabilities and will be uniquely positioned to capitalise on significant growth opportunities, particularly in the aircraft interiors engineering and manufacturing market segments. “This is a truly exciting day for HAECO and TIMCO as our companies embark upon a new chapter of global growth,” said Augustus Tang, Chief Executive Officer of HAECO. He added, “TIMCO’s strong reputation for quality aircraft care and customer services fits well with the HAECO family of companies. We are looking forward to continuing to grow TIMCO’s capabilities and reach, especially in the delivery of aircraft interiors products and services.”


Finnair traffic performance January 2014

February 7, 2014 · 33 Views

Finnair traffic decreased by 3.0% and the overall capacity decreased by 2.4% year‐on‐year. Passenger load factor decreased by 0.4 points and was 77.5% compared to the same period in 2013.


Volaris reports 19% increase in January traffic

February 7, 2014 · 20 Views

Volaris, the low-cost airline based in Mexico, reported that traffic in January 2014 increased 18.9%, compared to the same period in 2013. Capacity increased 18.0% year over year and the load factor was up 3.1 points to 81.6%.


IAG reports Group load factor of 77.1% for January

February 7, 2014 · 14 Views

IAG reported that January Group traffic increased 11.1% compared to the same period in 2013, while Group capacity increased 11%. Group load factor increased 0.1 point to 77.1%.


Norwegian reports continued passenger growth and higher load factor in January

February 7, 2014 · 18 Views

Norwegian released that traffic for January 2014 increased 50% year over year, while capacity increased 45%. The load factor for January increased 2.6 points to 74.8%.


Ryanair January traffic grows 5%

February 7, 2014 · 12 Views

Ryanair posted 5.0% traffic increase for January 2014 and a load factor of 71%, the same as in January 2013.