AVITRADER - test system

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert

This is an overview of all articles linked within the selected daily newsletter.
Please scroll down to read the articles…

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.


Nexcelle provides first components for CFM International’s LEAP-1C engine

February 10, 2014 · 3 Views

Nexcelle – the joint venture of Aircelle (Safran) and GE Aviation’s Middle River Aircraft Systems for a new generation of engine nacelles on integrated propulsion systems – has delivered its first O-Duct nacelle to equip CFM International’s LEAP-1C engines for the COMAC C919 jetliner. Developed and manufactured by Aircelle, this innovative O-Duct marks a milestone in Nexcelle’s production hardware deliveries, and is to be used – together with other nacelle components – for engine flight test. Nexcelle has also delivered the first LEAP-1C air inlet from Middle River. The hardware has been installed on a LEAP development engine currently undergoing tests. The one-piece composite O-Duct delivered by Nexcelle is a technology breakthrough in nacelle design for integrated propulsion systems, replacing a traditional thrust reverser’s two-piece “D” doors. When deployed, the O-Duct moves aftward to the reverse thrust position, eliminating drag links in the engine’s secondary flow-path, enhancing the airflow path and improving fuel consumption, while also increasing thrust reverser efficiency.


Boeing selects Monarch Aircraft Engineering to provide GoldCare to Norwegian Air International

February 10, 2014 · 24 Views

Monarch Aircraft Engineering (MAEL) has been selected by Boeing to provide GoldCare support to Norwegian Air International’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner operation at London Gatwick Airport in the UK. MAEL’s experienced engineering team will commence support services in the second quarter of 2014 with the first of four Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft entering into an initial short haul flying programme from London Gatwick.


AJW Technique achieves ANAC Brazil Certification

February 10, 2014 · 16 Views

AJW Technique have achieved ANAC Brazil Certification. This endorsement by the Brazilian Civil Aviation Authority has been a priority for the AJW Group over recent months. “We have proactively targeted the Latin American region to offer an unparalleled breadth of service for an increasingly diverse number of operators,” commented Gavin Simmonds, General Manager at AJW Technique. “With new airports planned and in progress, as well as many new airlines operating under the ‘low-cost carrier’ business model, Brazil and the other South American countries are considered to be key areas of investment for AJW throughout 2014.”


Strong results for GE’s record-setting high pressure compressor rig testing

February 10, 2014 · 6 Views

Testing continues on the high pressure compressor (HPC) module for the GE9X engine that will power Boeing’s 777X aircraft. The tests began in September at a GE Oil & Gas testing facility in Massa, Italy, and the module has accumulated close to 300 hours of testing today. “The test results for the GE9X HPC rig are very promising as the module achieved the 27:1 pressure ratio—the highest pressure ratio for any commercial aircraft engine,” said Bill Millhaem, general manager of the GE90/GE9X Program at GE Aviation. “The testing has validated the efficiency and operability of the HPC module design well ahead of the entry into service and supports our plan to deliver a 10% fuel burn improvement over today’s GE90 engines.” The HPC module is a 90% scale of the full-size HPC with more than 1,000 pieces of instrumentation that enable GE’s engineer to collect the necessary data to optimize the HPC module design. A GE LM2500 engine generates more than 29,000 horsepower to drive the HPC module during the test. When the rig test is completed in March, the module will have accumulated 450 run hours. GE plans to begin testing a second HPC module at the Massa, Italy test facility later this year and a third HPC module prior to first engine to test in 2016. GE will spend a total of $300m in 2014 on maturation testing of technologies for the new GE9X engine. Testing will include the Universal Propulsion Simulator (UPS) fan performance tests that is underway at Boeing’s Seattle, Washington facility. This test will provide key data on the GE9X fan design, which will be the largest fan diameter of any commercial aircraft engine to date.


SuperJet International and PowerJet announce completion of first ever export credit financing for a Sukhoi Superjet 100

February 10, 2014 · 14 Views

The first ever export credit financing package for the Sukhoi Superjet 100 was completed in December 2013 at delivery of the fourth out of twenty Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ100) regional jets ordered by the Mexican airline Interjet. The aircraft was financed through a multilateral export credit guaranteed by Coface, SACE and VEB for the French, Italian and Russian partners, respectively. It represents one of the first financing transactions wholly guaranteed by Coface, the French export credit agency (ECA), for a regional aircraft. It is a first also for SACE acting as a direct guarantor for an aircraft with a 100% guarantee. At the same time, it is also a first for the Russian government, as VEB financed the Russian part in collaboration with the French and Italian export credit agencies and following OECD international rules for aircraft export credit financing.


Delta names Gil West executive vice president and chief operating officer

February 10, 2014 · 17 Views

Delta Air Lines’ (DAL) Board of Directors approved the appointment of Wayne Gilbert “Gil” West to executive vice president and chief operating officer effective March 1, 2014. West will succeed Stephen E. Gorman who will retire after leading Delta’s operations divisions since 2007.


Boeing forecasts $1.9 trillion 20-year market for new airplanes in Asia Pacific

February 10, 2014 · 18 Views

Boeing (BA) says strong economic and passenger growth will be main drivers of new airplane demand in the Asia Pacific region. Boeing estimates the region’s airlines will need an additional 12,820 airplanes valued at $1.9 trillion, representing 36% of the world’s new airplane deliveries over the next 20 years. “Asia Pacific economies and passenger traffic continue to exhibit strong growth,” said Randy Tinseth, vice president, Marketing, Boeing Commercial Airplanes during a media briefing before the opening of the Singapore Airshow. “Over the next 20 years, nearly half of the world’s air traffic growth will be driven by travel to, from or within the region. The Asia Pacific fleet will nearly triple, from 5,090 airplanes in 2012 to 14,750 airplanes in 2032, to support the increased demand.” Boeing’s data projects that passenger airlines in the region will rely primarily on single-aisle airplanes such as the Next-Generation 737 and the 737 MAX, a new-engine variant of the market-leading 737, to connect passengers. Single-aisle airplanes will represent 69% of the new airplanes in the region.


P&W marks opening of new MRO and engineering facility at Singapore Seletar Aerospace Park

February 10, 2014 · 17 Views

Pratt & Whitney marked the official opening of Pratt & Whitney Component Solutions, the company’s new repair and engineering facility at Singapore’s Seletar Aerospace Park. The new flagship facility performs certain PW4000 engine component repair and will house various office support departments, including the company’s recently established regional office, and Global Services Engineering – Asia, which provides highly skilled aftermarket repair design for the company’s businesses in the Asia Pacific region. The new Pratt & Whitney Component Solutions unit forms part of Pratt & Whitney’s US$110m investment in Seletar Aerospace Park, where the company is also building a new 180,000 ft² manufacturing facility to manufacture PurePower engine hybrid aluminum fan blades and high pressure turbine disks.


UTC Aerospace Systems awarded Royal Australian Air Force contract for C-130 wheels and carbon brakes

February 10, 2014 · 33 Views

UTC Aerospace Systems was awarded a contract to provide the Commonwealth of Australia upgraded wheels and brakes for their C-130 aircraft. The new UTC Aerospace Systems C-130 wheels and brakes feature the latest in technology and industry-leading innovation. The carbon brakes use proprietary DURACARB carbon heat sink material that provides eight times longer life than the current steel brake. The DURACARB carbon also provides significant performance improvement in brake cooling time that allows aircraft flight crews the ability to depart tactical areas more quickly after delivering cargo. The boltless wheels employ a lock-ring design, substantially lowering maintenance time and cost, in addition to reduced parts count, when compared to traditional bolted aircraft wheels.


American Airlines Group reports January traffic results

February 10, 2014 · 27 Views

American Airlines Group’s total traffic was up 3.8% versus January 2013, while total capacity was up 2.3% versus January 2013. Total passenger load factor was 80.3% for the month of January, up 1.2 points versus January 2013.


Volaris to lease 16 more new aircraft

February 10, 2014 · 23 Views

Controladora Vuela Compania de Aviacion (Volaris), the ultra-low-cost airline serving Mexico, and the US, has signed a letter of intent with a leading aircraft lessor for 16 aircraft, comprised of ten new A320neo and six new A321neo, driving fleet growth while significantly enhancing efficiency. These NEO aircraft, powered by Pratt & Whitney’s PW1100G engines, will be delivered between 2016 and 2018.


Virgin America reports January 2014 operational results

February 10, 2014 · 26 Views

Virgin America reported its preliminary operational results for January 2014. The airline’s January traffic rose 10.9% on 3.7% more capacity, compared with the same month in 2013. Load factor in January was 76.3%, up 5.0 points from the same month a year earlier.


Singapore’s A*Star and Airbus to collaborate on research in aviation

February 10, 2014 · 21 Views

The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) in Singapore inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Airbus at the 3rd Aerospace Technology Leadership Forum on February 10th. The MoU signed between Airbus and A*STAR will facilitate collaboration in areas of mutual interest, including data analytics. A*STAR’s extensive capabilities in data analytics solutions can be used for a wide array of applications, including more accurate prediction of flight arrival times to reduce passenger delays, which will translate to significant savings for the aviation industry.