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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

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.


Finnair traffic performance in February 2014

March 10, 2014 · 15 Views

In February, Finnair traffic decreased by 3.5% and the overall capacity decreased by 2.0% year‐on‐year. Passenger load factor decreased by 1.2 points and was 79.4%.


Constant Aviation adds operational management

March 10, 2014 · 27 Views

Constant Aviation, a Directional Aviation Capital company offering full-service maintenance capabilities with a nationwide network, announced Darren Fronk as Operational Manager, Cleveland.


American Airlines and JetBlue Airways discontinue partnership

March 10, 2014 · 23 Views

American Airlines and JetBlue Airways plan to terminate their interline traffic agreement and reciprocal frequent flyer program accrual agreement, which includes select routes from Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) and New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). Beginning March 10th, each airline will no longer accept new interline sales for travel on the other carrier. Effective April 1, customers will no longer earn miles or points when traveling on eligible routes operated by the other airline.


Singapore selects Airbus Defence and Space A330 MRTT Multi Role Tanker Transport

March 10, 2014 · 64 Views

Airbus Defence and Space has been selected by Singapore to supply six A330 MRTT new generation air-to-air refuelling aircraft for the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF). The aircraft will be delivered under the terms of a firm contract which has already been signed. Singapore’s choice of the A330 MRTT makes it the sixth nation to select the type following Australia, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom which have ordered a total of 28 aircraft, and India which is in the final stages of contractual negotiations for six aircraft. A total of 17 aircraft are currently in service with the first four nations.


Bombardier inaugurates Regional Support Office in Toluca, Mexico

March 10, 2014 · 35 Views

Bombardier Aerospace continues to enhance its aftermarket support worldwide by opening a new Regional Support Office (RSO) in Toluca, Mexico. The office will anchor regional support capabilities for Bombardier business aircraft customers throughout Mexico, and surrounding areas. The new RSO is located alongside Bombardier’s new business aircraft sales team within the modern Assertec fixed based operation (FBO) at the Toluca airport. The office will be home to three field service representatives (FSR), one sales director, one RSO administrative assistant and one RSO Manager. This local presence provides customers with an additional level of support in conjunction with Bombardier’s extensive parts and maintenance network of wholly owned service centres and authorized service facilities (ASF), as well as its expert in-service engineering teams and 24/7 Customer Response Centres.


Rolls-Royce to build new facility in Dahlewitz, Germany

March 10, 2014 · 62 Views

Rolls-Royce will expand its aerospace research and technology capabilities in Dahlewitz, building a new test-bed for power gearboxes which will support the development of next generation aero-engine designs. Close to 20% of the total investment of €65m in the new test-bed will be funded by the German and the Brandenburg government. The investment in the facility by Rolls-Royce is part of the company’s existing mid to long-term technology investment plans. Rolls-Royce recently shared details of its next generation engine designs, one of which, called UltraFan, includes a geared engine design, which will use components of the type that will be tested at the new Dahlewitz facility. Rolls-Royce has a long heritage of gear design capability from turbo-shaft, turbo-prop and LiftFan gearbox designs and will use that knowledge and capability to develop technology for the very high bypass ratio designs of future engines. The UltraFan design, with a variable pitch fan system, is based on such technology and could be ready for service from 2025. It will offer at least 25% improvement in fuel burn and emissions compared with the first generation of Trent engines. Rolls-Royce Germany has acquired exceptional engineering capability over the past 20 years and has already implemented development packages for the Trent engine family. A new test-bed for the most powerful version of the Trent XWB, the world’s most efficient engine flying today, and the newest Trent engine, will be inaugurated in Dahlewitz in the second half of this year.


First delivery from new GKN Aerospace business jet engine integration facility

March 10, 2014 · 27 Views

On March 4th, 2014, just 6 months after construction began, GKN Aerospace’s new bizjet engine integration facility, in Phoenix, Arizona has made its first delivery. The facility supplied Honeywell HTF7250 engines, fully integrated into GKN Aerospace designed and manufactured nacelle systems, to Gulfstream for its newest aircraft – the G280 super mid-sized business jet. Today the new 24,000 ft² facility which is situated alongside Honeywell’s Arizona operation employs 30 people. At capacity it will employ 50 and assemble 28 complete power systems per month. By mid-2014, it will be performing all podding of HTF7000 engines into GKN Aerospace nacelles, delivering each complete propulsion system, on Honeywell’s behalf, directly to the airframe end customer assembly line for business jets such as the G280 as well as the Bombardier CL350 and the Embraer Legacy 450/500.


Bob Sanchez joins Universal Avionics as Program Development Manager, Military and Government

March 11, 2014 · 22 Views

Scott Campbell, Universal Avionics’ Director of Airline and Military Sales, announced that Mr. Bob Sanchez has been appointed to the newly created position of Program Development Manager, Military and Government. In this new role, Mr. Sanchez will be responsible for maintaining Universal Avionics’ existing programs and relationships within the Government and Military market segment, as well as seeking out and developing new programs both domestically and internationally.


Aeronaves TSM orders third AEI MD80SF 12 pallet conversion

March 11, 2014 · 8 Views

Aeronaves TSM has ordered one more AEI MD80SF passenger to freighter conversion. The aircraft is a high gross weight MD82 (MSN 49558) and was built in 1988. The aircraft will be modified at Commercial Jet’s Miami Florida facility starting in July 2014. This order will bring Aeronaves TSM’s MD80SF freighter fleet to three, with two AEI MD82SF’s and one AEI MD83SF.


Chad Engelking joins Werner Aero Services as VP of Business Development

March 11, 2014 · 20 Views

Werner Aero Services released that Chad Engelking has joined the company as Vice President of Business Development. Chad comes to Werner Aero Services with over 15 years of aviation industry experience ranging from direct airline, OEM and MRO sales, as well as development of asset management for structural components in the after-market segment. In his new role at Werner Aero Services, Chad will be leading Werner Aero Services structural assets division to service airline, OEM and MRO customers. Chad will also be instrumental in developing new relationships and expanding Werner Aero Services’ customer footprint with new airline, OEM and MRO accounts.


HAECO 2013 final results announcement

March 11, 2014 · 25 Views

The HAECO Group reported an attributable profit of HK$625m in 2013, 24.0% lower than that in 2012. Earnings per share decreased by 24.0% to HK$3.76. Turnover increased by 26.7% to HK$7,387m. Demand for line maintenance services in Hong Kong remained stable. 2.8% more aircraft movements were handled in 2013 than in 2012. Airframe maintenance and component overhaul services in Hong Kong were adversely affected by shortages of skilled and semiskilled labour, which resulted in a significant reduction in capacity. 13.5% fewer manhours were sold by HAECO for airframe maintenance in 2013 than in 2012.


SMBC Aviation Capital choose AerData’s STREAM and GEARS software

March 11, 2014 · 16 Views

AerData, a provider of software and services for the aviation industry announced that SMBC Aviation Capital (SMBC AC), has licensed STREAM aircraft records software and GEARS asset review system. STREAM (Secure Technical Records for Electronic Asset Management), a web-based solution used by some of the world’s largest airlines, lessors and MROs to manage aircraft and engine records. GEARS (Global Electronic Asset Review System), is a total asset review management tool designed with in-field experience and IT to ensure quality, consistency and efficiency in any asset review.


Dr. Srinivasan Dwarakanath appointed CEO of Airbus India

March 11, 2014 · 46 Views

Airbus is grouping its activities in India through the creation of a fully owned subsidiary called Airbus India to manage the company’s significant Indian footprint spread across several sites. Dr. Srinivasan Dwarakanath (Dwaraka) has been appointed Airbus India CEO and Mr Charles Champion, EVP Airbus Engineering and member of the Airbus Executive Committee is appointed the Chairman of Airbus India. The existing Delhi Airbus liaison office will remain under the leadership of Ajay Mehra. The new Airbus India organisation will have customer facing centres in Delhi and Mumbai. Building on the success of the Airbus Engineering Centre India (AECI) in Bangalore, Airbus India will also include strategy, customer services and procurement teams under one organisation. A Maintenance Repair and Overhaul (MRO) capability will be established, at a later date.


Tigerair Australia expands partnership with BAE Systems

March 11, 2014 · 27 Views

Tigerair Australia has expanded its partnership with BAE Systems, creating up to 40 new jobs at three airports. BAE Systems is now delivering line maintenance services for Tigerair’s fleet of A320 aircraft at Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane airports for the next five years. Line maintenance provides overnight checks on terminating aircraft and 24 hour coverage for any engineering requirements. This work builds on the overnight base maintenance services BAE Systems has been delivering for the airline at Melbourne airport since October 2013.


Air Namibia und Lufthansa Technik continue cooperation

March 11, 2014 · 21 Views

Air Namibia und Lufthansa Technik continuing their cooperation. The technical support provided since the airline began operating in 2006 is now being continued through a Total Technical Support TTS contract valid through 2018. As part of its comprehensive supply of the airline’s current long-haul fleet of two factory new Airbus A330s, Lufthansa Technik has been contracted to provide services for the components, engineering and line maintenance. In addition, Lufthansa Technik will take over the complex support of the customer’s lease returns for the former A340 fleet.