Tuesday, May 13, 2014
AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert
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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
May 12, 2014 · 89 Views
BOC Aviation announced that Iberia, the Spanish carrier, has taken delivery of all 12 Airbus aircraft, comprising eight new A330-300 and four new A320 aircraft. All 12 aircraft were delivered to Iberia between February 2013 and April 2014.
Embraer and Boeing sign Memorandum of Understanding for implementing sustainable biofuels R&D center in Brazil
May 12, 2014 · 74 Views
Embraer and Boeing have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for creating a joint biofuels research center for the purpose of developing and maturing the knowledge and technologies that make it possible to establish a sustainable biofuels chain for aviation. The Center shall be installed in the Technological Park of São José dos Campos. The project shall now be structured via a Collaboration Agreement between the two companies. Provision has also been made for the possibility of other companies and institutions taking part in the Research and Development activities. “Boeing is working aggressively around the world to expand the supply of sustainable aviation biofuel and reduce aviation’s carbon emissions,” said Julie Felgar, Boeing Commercial Airplanes managing director of Environmental Strategy and Integration. “With our joint biofuel research center, Boeing and Embraer are making a strong commitment toward a successful, sustainable aviation biofuel industry in Brazil.”
May 12, 2014 · 113 Views
Frontier Airlines reported the appointment of James Dempsey as Chief Financial Officer. Dempsey brings more than 17 years of experience in aviation finance. Dempsey most recently served as Treasurer for Ryanair, one of Europe’s leading ultra-low cost carrier. In this role, Dempsey played a critical part in financing the airlines growth, managing fuel costs and in reducing operating costs, enabling the airline to grow to 81 million passengers annually.
May 12, 2014 · 106 Views
Air Lease Corporation reported its owned aircraft fleet has reached 200 aircraft. The milestone was achieved when Air Lease simultaneously delivered three new aircraft to three different lessees in three international cities on the same day. On Friday, May 9th, a new Boeing 737-800 was delivered to MIAT Mongolian Airlines in Seattle, Washington; a new Airbus A321 was delivered to Thomas Cook Airlines in Hamburg, Germany; and a new ATR 72-600 was delivered to Golden Myanmar Airways in Toulouse, France. These aircraft were all from ALC’s order book, and are all on long term leases with these airlines.
May 12, 2014 · 95 Views
Gogo reported record first quarter revenue of $95.7m, up 35% year-over-year. Adjusted EBITDA for Q1 2014 was $5.3m, up 87% from $2.9m in Q1 2013, driven by strong growth in CA-NA and BA segment profit, offset in part by increased segment loss in CA-ROW due to increased investment in it’s international expansion. Net loss attributable to common stock for Q1 2014 was $16.9m compared to net loss attributable to common stock of $32.5m in Q1 2013.
May 12, 2014 · 150 Views
SkyWest Inc., the holding company for SkyWest Airlines and ExpressJet Airlines announced the promotion of Russell “Chip” Childs to President, effective May 12th, 2014. Mr. Childs has been serving as President and Chief Operating Officer of SkyWest Airlines. In his new role at SkyWest Inc., Mr. Childs will oversee all activities of the holding company, as well as those of the operating airlines, with a focus on improved profitability, quality and value for all SkyWest Inc., stakeholders. Jerry C. Atkin will remain Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of SkyWest Inc.
May 12, 2014 · 442 Views
Bombardier Aerospace announced the achievement of key product development milestones on the Global 7000 and Global 8000 aircraft program, with the start of production and assembly of major structures for the first Flight Test Vehicle (FTV1) of the Global 7000 and Global 8000 aircraft program. Structural and system suppliers, as well as various Bombardier Aerospace manufacturing sites, are engaged in manufacturing parts and major structures for FTV1. The rear fuselage and cockpit are currently being assembled at Bombardier Aerospace’s manufacturing facilities in Querétaro, Mexico, and St-Laurent, Canada, respectively. The centre fuselage is being assembled at Aerolia’s manufacturing facility in Méaulte, France, and the wing is being assembled at Triumph’s facility in Red Oak, Texas. Set to enter-into-service in 2016 and 2017 respectively, the new Global 7000 and Global 8000 aircraft exemplify Bombardier’s visionary thinking. Both jets will have the ability to reach more destinations non-stop than ever before, delivering unprecedented levels of performance, flexibility and comfort.
May 12, 2014 · 135 Views
The static strength test aircraft of Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) was transferred from the final-assembly factory (Komaki South Plant of MHI’s Nagoya Aerospace Systems Works located in Aichi Prefecture) to the strength test station to start preparations for the static strength test. The test will start this summer 2014, after preparations have been completed. The static strength test is one of the airframe tests to inspect that the aircraft meets safety standards in strength. Two test aircraft are required for airframe tests, one is for the static strength test and the other one for the fatigue test. The airframe tests are necessary for Type Certificate and Airworthiness Certificate acquisitions, and will be conducted in the presence of the Civil Aviation Bureau.
May 12, 2014 · 411 Views
Singapore Technologies Engineering released that with effect from July 1st, 2014, Mr Chang Cheow Teck will step down from his position as President of ST Aerospace, to pursue personal commitments. Mr Tan Pheng Hock, the Group’s President and CEO, will oversee the business of ST Aerospace until a successor is appointed. To facilitate a smooth transition, Mr Chang will take on a role as Advisor to Mr Tan until December 31st, 2014.
May 12, 2014 · 223 Views
For the fiscal year ended March 31st, 2014, Triumph Group reported that net sales totaled $3.763bn, a 2% increase from fiscal year 2013 net sales of $3.703bn. Organic sales for the fiscal year decreased 6%. Net income for fiscal year 2014 was $206.3m, versus $297.3m for fiscal year 2013. The fiscal year’s results included approximately $72.4m pre-tax ($46.9m after tax) of non-recurring costs. Excluding the non-recurring costs, net income for fiscal year 2014 was $253.2m. For the fourth quarter ended March 31st, 2014, net sales were $936.4m, a 5% decrease from last year’s fourth quarter net sales of $986.3m. Organic sales for the quarter decreased 11% primarily due to production rate cuts on the 747-8 program, lower revenues on the 767 program and a decrease in military sales. Net income for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2014 was $42.3m, versus $65.6m for the fourth quarter of the prior fiscal year. The quarter’s results included approximately $48.1m pre-tax ($31.2m after tax) of non-recurring costs related to the Jefferson Street facility closure and start-up of the Red Oak facility, early retirement incentives offered to certain Triumph Aerostructures employees and a net curtailment gain related to the Triumph Aerostructures pension plan.