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Saturday, May 17, 2014

AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert

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

February 20, 2015 · 542 Views

The bitter dispute between US- and Gulf-based airlines has reached a new level after Emirates flatly rejected an open apology made concerning what was seen as incredibly tactless and insensitive remarks made by Delta’s Chief Executive, Richard Anderson. The unfortunate incident relates back to comments made by a group of American airlines that a number of the larger Gulf carriers had benefited from state subsidies amounting to a figure in excess of US$40bn. As a consequence the American airlines either wanted to renegotiate or scrap the current Open Skies agreement.
Offended by such claims, the Gulf carriers retaliated by questioning whether or not US airlines had received government subsidies totaling US$5bn in the wake of 9/11. Unfortunately Delta’s Anderson, responding to this claim on CNN, said: “It’s a great irony to have the United Arab Emirates from the Arabian Peninsula talk about that, given the fact that our industry was really shocked by the terrorism of 9/11, which came from terrorists from the Arabian Peninsula.” While the UAE and Qatar, two of the States’ allies who have offered either military or logistical support for international operations were particularly upset by these comments, Delta simply made it clear that Anderson had been responding to claims regarding post 9/11 subsidies. “He didn’t mean to suggest the Gulf carriers or their governments are linked to the 9/11 terrorists. We apologize if anyone was offended.”
Unfortunately the largest of the three main Gulf carriers did not see this as acceptable. “We believe that the statements made this week by Mr. Anderson were deliberately crafted and delivered for specific effect,” it confirmed in a statement. However US airlines continue to complain that they have lost significant numbers of bookings since 2008 as a result of Gulf competition and cited documents they indicate demonstrate aid which has allowed their competitors to offer cheap fares. In retaliation, Gulf officials say that most US carriers do not fly the same routes and are losing business only because they offer an inferior service.
This is not a dissimilar situation to the one between Gulf airlines and European carriers, including Lufthansa, and coincidentally has come at the same time as US airlines are trying to have US Exlm Bank closed down. They believe Gulf carriers are benefitting to a greater degree from the export credit agency. The tit-for-tat dialog continues with Western airlines showing concern for the safety of thousands of service industry jobs, a complaint to which Gulf carriers have responded by making it very clear they support at least as many jobs in the aerospace sector with their huge orders for aircraft.


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

February 20, 2015 · 640 Views

Snecma (Safran), a leading manufacturer of aircraft engines, and Hindustan Aeronautics  (HAL), a leading aerospace manufacturer, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on January 28th, 2015 in Bangalore to explore establishing a joint venture in India for the production of aero-engine parts.  The proposed joint venture will initially focus on the manufacture of high-tech parts for the Dassault Rafale’s Snecma M88 engine, then subsequently contribute to other major aerospace projects of HAL & Snecma, in India and worldwide. Spanning over 30,000 m², the proposed joint venture’s new plant is expected to benefit from substantial investment by the two partners, providing it with state-of-the-art machinery and equipment. This agreement marks a major step forward in the long-standing collaboration between Snecma and HAL. The proposed joint venture will further broaden the scope of the excellent relations established over the past 60 years between Safran affiliates and the Indian aerospace industry. For example, Snecma manufactures the M53 engines powering the Mirage 2000H “Vajra” fighters operated by the Indian Air Force.


Design flaws led to 787 battery fire

December 2, 2014 · 195 Views

On the 7th January 2013 a fire was reported on board a Boeing 787 Dreamliner while parked at Boston’s airport in the USA. The fire was put down to a problem with one of the plane’s lithium-ion batteries. A week later an All Nippon Airways 787 Dreamliner had to make an emergency landing after smoke was discovered inside the plane which was subsequently traced back to another lithium-ion battery. As a consequence of this incident, all 787 Dreamliners were grounded until April of that year until further acceptable testing and improvements were carried out to the battery system on board the plane. The battery itself was manufactured by GS Yuasa and comprised eight individual cells making up a combined weight of 63lbs.
Nearly two years later and the results of the investigation into the first incident have concluded that the lithium-ion battery installed in the plane should not have received certification by the FAA. The National Transport Safety Board (NTSB) were also critical of Boeing who they believed had erroneously ruled out the chances of thermal runaway in its assessment of the battery’s safety. Boeing’s battery tests to obtain original certification included crushing battery cells, driving nails through them and deliberately introducing short circuits to cause failure. Boeing found “nothing adverse happened” while these tests were carried out, and so deemed the battery’s box and internal protection to be of an acceptable standard. Boeing stated that it had followed the certification process set out by the FAA. It would seem that while the cause of the fire has been clearly identified, responsibility for its occurrence has not been accepted in full by anyone.


Rolls-Royce forced to axe 2,600 jobs after second profit warning this year

November 5, 2014 · 162 Views

Back in February this year, Rolls-Royce, the FTSE-100 engine maker, lost over £3bn of its value after shocking the market with its first profits warning in a decade. To announce a second one this October has created considerable concern and Rolls-Royce has decided that over the next 18 months they need to reduce costs by up to £80m a year by axing 2,600 jobs, the majority of which will be in the aerospace sector in Britain and the United States. The focus is on Rolls-Royce’s key Trent engines as they move from the development to the production phase, which consequently requires fewer engineers.
Back in February John Rishton, Rolls-Royce group’s Chief Executive, had admitted that the future was “bumpier than I had expected”, while blaming the current problems on deteriorating economic conditions and a tit-for-tat trade war between the EU and Russia over the Ukrainian crisis which had affected its nuclear and energy business as well as its power-systems unit. This week Rishton has had to admit that “We are taking determined management action and accelerating our progress on cost. The measures announced today will not be the last; however they will contribute towards Rolls-Royce becoming a stronger and more profitable company.”
Another consequence of the situation is the unexpected departure of Finance Director, Mark Morris, leaving the company after 27 year without any explanation. He will be replaced by David Smith, who is being promoted from Finance Director of the Rolls-Royce Aerospace division. This second profit warning saw share value fall 11% to 832p, wiping a further £2bn off the company’s value. However, news of the redundancies was well received by investors and the share price rallied by 2%, currently standing at 832p. This is clear confirmation of comments made by Espirito Santo’s analyst, Ed Stacey, who indicated that investors would be expecting a clear message from the new Finance Director and tight control on all finances.


Air France-KLM selects GEnx engines for Boeing 787 fleet

March 25, 2014 · 111 Views

Air France-KLM selected the GEnx-1B engine to power its 25 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 12 leased 787 aircraft. The total engine order is valued at more than $1.7bn. Air France-KLM and GE Aviation have also signed an agreement that will allow Air France-KLM to offer maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services for the GEnx-1B engine. Under this agreement, Air France-KLM will be licensed to perform maintenance and overhaul work on the GEnx-1B engine and GE will provide technical support and assistance on overhaul workscoping and component repair licenses, comprehensive material support and training.


ILFC closes $1.5bn senior secured term loan

March 7, 2014 · 78 Views

International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) has closed a new senior secured term loan of $1.5 billion. The loan will bear interest at LIBOR plus 275 basis points with a 0.75% LIBOR floor, is priced at 99.5% of par value, and will mature in 2021. The collateral used to support the transaction has an initial weighted average age of 9.1 years. It will be secured primarily by a first priority-perfected lien on the equity of certain of ILFC’s subsidiaries, which directly or indirectly own a pool of aircraft and related leases. ILFC plans to use the proceeds for general corporate purposes, including purchasing aircraft and supporting the company’s liquidity cushion.


Airbus Commercial reports another year of financial improvement

February 26, 2014 · 78 Views

In 2013, Airbus achieved a new industry record of 1,619 gross commercial orders (FY 2012: 914 gross orders) with net orders of 1,503 aircraft (FY 2012: 833 net orders), excluding ATR. Gross orders comprised 1,253 A320 Family aircraft, 77 A330s, 239 A350 XWBs and 50 A380s. Fourth-quarter orders included Emirates Airline’s agreement for 50 A380s and Etihad Airways’ order for 50 A350 XWBs, 36 A320neos and one A330-200F. Airbus Military (now part of Airbus Defence and Space) received 17 net orders (FY 2012: 32 net orders). Airbus’ net order intake increased sharply to €202.3bn (FY 2012: €88.9bn). At the end of 2013, Airbus’ consolidated order book was valued at €647.4bn (year-end 2012: €525.5bn). The Airbus Commercial backlog was worth €627.1bn (year-end 2012: €505.3bn), comprising 5,559 Airbus aircraft (year-end 2012: 4,682 units) and representing over eight years of production. Airbus Military’s order book was worth €20.8bn (year-end 2012: €21.1bn). Airbus series aircraft deliveries increased to 626 aircraft (FY 2012: 588 aircraft, including three A330s without revenue recognition). Airbus Military delivered 31 aircraft (FY 2012: 29 aircraft). Airbus’ consolidated revenues increased seven percent to €42,012m (FY 2012: €39,273m), reflecting higher commercial and military aircraft deliveries. The Division’s consolidated EBIT rose to €1,710m (FY 2012: €1,252m). Airbus Commercial’s revenues rose to €39,889m (FY 2012: €37,624m). The Airbus Commercial reported EBIT was €1,595m (FY 2012: €1,147m) with the EBIT before one-off at €2,216m (FY 2012: €1,669m). Airbus Commercial’s EBIT before one-off benefitted from the improved operational performance, including favourable volume, some better pricing and an improvement in A380 losses. It also included higher A350 XWB programme support costs. Revenues at Airbus Military rose to €2,893m (FY 2012: €2,131m), driven by the A400M ramp-up and higher volumes from both light and medium transport planes and tankers. The EBIT at Airbus Military was €166m (FY 2012: €93m).


Boeing Commercial Airplanes reports full year revenue of $53bn

January 29, 2014 · 74 Views

Boeing Commercial Airplanes fourth-quarter revenue increased to $14.7bn and full-year revenue increased to a record $53bn on higher delivery volume. Fourth-quarter operating margin improved to 10.3% and full-year operating margin grew to 10.9% on the higher volume, favorable delivery mix and continued strong operating performance. During the quarter, the company launched the 777X with 259 orders and commitments. During the year, the 787 program completed first flight of the 787-9, successfully launched the 787-10 and began operating at a 10 per month production rate in final assembly. The 737 program delivered at a record production rate of 38 per month and has won nearly 1,800 firm orders for the 737 MAX since launch. In 2013, a record 648 commercial aircraft were delivered. In January 2014, the company reached an eight-year contract extension through 2024 with the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers District 751 (IAM). Commercial Airplanes booked 465 net orders during the quarter and 1,355 during the year. Backlog remains strong with 5,080 airplanes valued at a record $374 billion.


A350 XWB in Bolivia for high altitude testing

January 9, 2014 · 65 Views

The A350 XWB development aircraft, MSN3, is in Bolivia where it will perform a series of tests at the high altitude airfields of Cochabamba and La Paz. Cochabamba is around 8,300 feet above sea level, and La Paz is one of the world’s highest airports at 13,300 feet. Operations at such high altitude airfields are particularly demanding on aircraft engines, Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) and systems. The aim of these trials is to demonstrate and validate the full functionality of engines, systems, materials as well as to assess the overall aircraft behaviour under these extreme conditions. A number of take-offs with all engines operating and with simulated engine failures are being performed at each of the airfields to collect data on engine operating characteristics and validate the aircraft take-off performance. The autopilot behaviour will also be evaluated during automatic landings and go-arounds. Since the A350 XWB’s first flight with MSN1 on June 14th 2013, over 800 flight test hours have been performed in close to 200 test flights by both MSN1 and MSN3. In total the A350 XWB flight test campaign will accumulate around 2,500 flight hours with the fleet of five aircraft. The rigorous flight testing will lead to the certification of the A350-900 by the European EASA and US FAA airworthiness authorities, prior to entry into service in Q4 2014.


Firefly welcomes first ATR 72-600

July 5, 2013 · 64 Views

Firefly, Malaysia Airlines’ subsidiary carrier has taken ownership of its first brand-new ATR 72-600. The aircraft is the first of 20 latest generation firm ATRs, plus 16 options, ordered by Malaysia Airlines in December 2012. Firefly currently operates 12 ATR 72-500s, and with the arrival of the new ATR 72-600s will almost triple its exclusively ATR 72 aircraft fleet, taking the total to over 30 aircraft.


GE’s Passport engine begins first full engine test

June 26, 2013 · 40 Views

Certification testing is underway on the first Passport development engine at GE Aviation’s Peebles Testing Operation in Ohio. The engine began ground testing on June 24th and ran for more than three hours, reaching more than 18,000 lbs. of standard day sea-level takeoff thrust. Eight Passport engines and one core will be involved in the engine certification program. Flight testing on GE’s flying testbed is scheduled for 2014. Engine certification is expected in 2015. The Passport engine certification program follows three years of validation testing. GE Aviation has conducted validation tests on the fan blisk design, including two fan blade-out rig tests, ingestion tests and a fan aero rig test to demonstrate fan efficiency. Testing is complete on the third eCore demonstrator, and GE has accumulated more than 300 hours of testing on eCore demonstrators to date.


Rolls-Royce wins order from CIT to power 23 aircraft

May 22, 2013 · 53 Views

Rolls-Royce has won an order from US leasing company CIT Aerospace for Trent XWB engines, to power ten Airbus A350 XWB aircraft and Trent 700 engines to power 13 Airbus A330 aircraft. The Trent XWB engines will power ten CIT A350 aircraft that were announced in January 2013 which were in addition to five A350 XWB aircraft already on order. The Trent XWB, specifically designed for the Airbus A350, is the fastest selling Trent engine ever, with more than 1,200 already sold. The engine variant that will power the A350-800 and -900 was awarded European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) type certification in February. The engine will power the first flight of the Airbus A350 XWB this year and the aircraft’s first in-service flight in 2014.


JorAMCo performs C-checks for Jazeera Airways aircraft

May 15, 2014 · 92 Views

JorAMCo signed a contract with Jazeera Airways to provide the Kuwait-based low-cost carrier with ‘C’ check for Three A320s aircraft of its fleet, that are due for maintenance services this year. Two of these aircraft are redelivery checks leased to TAP Airlines, including other maintenance services to be provided by JorAMCo such as: C5 tasks, cabin modifications, full exterior paint in addition to SBs and Ads.


AerCap completes acquisition of ILFC from AIG

May 15, 2014 · 160 Views

AerCap Holdings has completed its previously announced acquisition of International Lease Finance Corporation (“ILFC”) from American International Group, (“AIG”). Under the terms of the agreement, AerCap paid AIG $3.0bn in cash and 97,560,976 AerCap ordinary shares, which represents an approximately 46% ownership position in AerCap’s ordinary share capital. In connection with the acquisition, AerCap Ireland Capital Limited and AerCap Global Aviation Trust, each a wholly-owned subsidiary of AerCap, completed their previously announced offering of $2.6bn aggregate principal amount of senior notes (the “Notes”), consisting of three tranches of varying tenor in a private placement. The Notes are fully and unconditionally guaranteed on a senior unsecured basis by AerCap and certain of its subsidiaries. The net proceeds of the private placement were used to finance part of the consideration payable in connection with the acquisition. AerCap’s new $2.75bn four-year unsecured revolving credit facility became available as of the closing of the acquisition, replacing ILFC’s $2.3bn unsecured revolving credit facility. Additionally, as part of the transaction, AerCap procured from AIG a committed five-year $1.0bn unsecured revolving credit facility.


Air Côte d’Ivoire extends A319 maintenance contract with AFI KLM E&M

May 15, 2014 · 98 Views

Air Côte d’Ivoire has added a third A319 to its contract with AFI KLM E&M, including component and engine support, exclusive aircraft inspections, engineering and line maintenance. Air Côte d’Ivoire benefited from AFI KLM E&M support, particularly in terms of skills management for line maintenance. In 2013, seven French technicians were sent to Abidjan to train Air Côte d’Ivoire teams, which are now self-reliant.


Airbus Group delivers 300th UH-72A Lakota helicopter to U.S. Army

May 15, 2014 · 805 Views

Airbus Group delivered to the U.S. Army the service’s 300th UH-72A Lakota helicopter. Every Lakota has been delivered – on time and on budget – by an American workforce that is more than 50% U.S. military veterans. The Lakota is manufactured at the company’s Airbus Helicopters facility in Columbus, Miss.


Allen Paxson named new CFM Executive Vice President

May 15, 2014 · 137 Views

CFM International announced that Allen Paxson has been named executive vice president, replacing Chaker Chahrour. Mr. Chahrour, who had served in the role since February 2009, has been appointed vice president of Sales & Marketing for GE Aviation. As part of the CFM Executive Team, Mr. Paxson is responsible for overseeing programs carried out by CFM. Along with his counterpart at Snecma, Cédric Goubet, he also serves as the primary interface between the two companies. Mr. Paxson is also general manager of the CFM project department for GE Aviation. Most recently, Mr Paxson served as general manager for the Regional Engines & Services where he was responsible for development, production, product support and services for GE’s CF34, Passport 20 and CT7 engine families, as well as the CFE738 engine built by a joint venture between GE and Honeywell.


Evergreen Apple Nigeria to launch new name and branding

May 15, 2014 · 89 Views

Evergreen Apple Nigeria will be presenting a new look and feel for the company at this year’s European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition (EBACE). It will be announcing a new name, “EAN Aviation” and promoting a revamped brand. Initially known as Evergreen Apple Nigeria, the brand refresh has been implemented following an expansion in the type of aviation services offered by the company, and the need to have the name reflect the core business activity. With the clarification of identity, EAN Aviation will be well positioned to continue to develop an internationally recognised aviation business.


AeroCentury posts first quarter 2014 net income of $0.4m

May 15, 2014 · 134 Views

AeroCentury, an independent aircraft leasing company, reported its operating results for the first quarter ended March 31st, 2014. The Company reported net income of $0.4m for the first quarter of 2014, compared to net income of $3.8m for the first quarter of 2013. Total revenues were $8.0m for the first quarter ended March 31st, 2014, compared to total revenues of $12.2m for the same period a year ago. Operating lease revenue was higher in the first quarter ended March 31st, 2014, compared to the same period a year ago primarily as a result of increases in operating lease revenue from assets purchased during 2013 and 2014.


GOL reports 1Q14 operating income of R$144m

May 15, 2014 · 110 Views

GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes reported its results for the first quarter of 2014. Operating income totaled R$144m in 1Q14, 43% increase versus 1Q13, with an operating margin of 5.8%. In the last 12 months, GOL achieved an EBIT of R$309m and a margin of 3.3%. Net revenues reached R$2.5bn, 20% or R$411m, up year over year and the Company’s highest ever first-quarter figure.


Air Canada reports first quarter 2014 results

May 15, 2014 · 141 Views

Air Canada reported first quarter earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization and impairment, and aircraft rent (EBITDAR of $147m compared to EBITDAR of $145m in the first quarter of 2013. Air Canada’s EBITDAR of $147m was consistent with the EBITDAR projection provided in the airline’s news release dated April 3rd, 2014 which forecasted EBITDAR in the first quarter of 2014 to be in line with last year’s level. An operating loss of $62m in the first quarter of 2014 reflected a $44m improvement from the same quarter in 2013. On a GAAP basis, in the first quarter of 2014, Air Canada reported a net loss of $341m compared to a net loss of $260m in the first quarter of 2013. The net loss in the first quarter of 2014 included foreign exchange losses of $161m versus foreign exchange losses of $40m in the first quarter of 2013. On an adjusted basis, the airline reported a net loss of $132m compared to a net loss of $143m in the first quarter of 2013, an improvement of $11m.


Eastern Air Lines announces Boeing 737 Next Generation aircraft order

May 15, 2014 · 5238 Views

Eastern Air Lines Group has signed an initial order and placed deposits with Boeing for 10 firm Next Generation 737-800 aircraft and purchase rights for 10 Boeing MAX 8 aircraft. Eastern Air Lines Group was formed to re-launch Eastern Air Lines, which formerly operated from 1930 to 1991, as a passenger airline using the Boeing 737NG aircraft from its main base of operations at Miami International Airport.


Rolls-Royce dispatches first Trent XWB for entry into service

May 15, 2014 · 197 Views

Rolls-Royce dispatched the first production Trent XWB that will power the Airbus A350 XWB’s entry into commercial service with Qatar Airways later this year. The Trent XWB, the most efficient aero engine and specifically designed for the A350 XWB, is the fastest-selling civil large engine ever, with more than 1,600 already sold to 40 customers. Qatar Airways has ordered 80 of the aircraft (43 A350-900s and 37 A350-1000s). The engine powered the A350 XWB’s first test flight in June 2013 from Toulouse, France. Since then the aircraft has carried out a variety of test flights, including high altitude testing in Bolivia, hot weather testing in Al Ain, UAE, and cold weather testing in Iqaluit, Canada. The engine also powered the A350 XWB’s visit to the Singapore Airshow in February 2014.


GA Telesis announces disassembly of A320 aircraft

May 16, 2014 · 255 Views

GA Telesis has started the disassembly of one Airbus A320 (MSN 245) powered by CFM56-5A engines. The ex-All Nippon Airways aircraft has entered the GA Telesis disassembly production line in California. The remarketing of the removed parts is being directed by both Aircraft Systems and Turbine Engine groups at GA Telesis, LLC in Fort Lauderdale.


Boeing, Scoot sign 787 pilot training agreement

May 16, 2014 · 158 Views

Boeing and Scoot announced a five-year pilot training agreement to support the Singapore-based airline’s fleet transition to 787 Dreamliners. Under the agreement, Boeing Flight Services, a business unit of Boeing Commercial Aviation Services, will provide 787 flight training to Scoot pilots at Boeing’s Singapore training campus. In 2014 alone, an anticipated 32 Scoot pilots will undergo training.


Airbus A400M makes first visit to Mexico

May 16, 2014 · 192 Views

The Airbus A400M new generation airlifter landed for the first time in Mexico on May 15th, where the aircraft will show its performance in a series of demonstration flights. The aircraft landed at Mexico D.F. International Airport at 13.50 (local time) and will stay in Mexico until the 23rd of May.


Jetcraft Avionics names new executive Director

May 16, 2014 · 204 Views

Jetcraft Corporation, a global leader in business aircraft sales, acquisitions and trades, hired Stedman Stevens as Executive Director of Jetcraft Avionics. Mr. Stevens’ responsibilities include supporting Jetcraft’s executive management team in a strategic advisory role and taking a hands-on-approach to the business and sales operations of Jetcraft Avionics.


Avianca Holdings reports operating profit of $57.2m for first quarter of 2014

May 16, 2014 · 204 Views

Avianca Holdings reported first quarter 2014 adjusted net income of $31.6m, excluding special items. Adjusted net income margin came in at 2.9%. Operating revenues amounted to $1.099bn, down 1.7% over 1Q 2013, mainly due to a 2.2% decrease in passenger revenues, driven by a yield decline of 4.4%, which was partially offset by a 3.3% growth in passenger carried. In line with its cargo capacity expansion and improved capacity utilization, Cargo and other revenues increased by 0.5%. As a result cargo load factor increased by 100 basis points. Adjusted cost per available seat kilometer (CASK) for the period dropped by 2.7%, reflecting the successful implementation of the cost control initiatives. Adjusted EBITDAR was $166.5m, while the EBITDAR margin reached 15.2%. Operating income excluding special items (EBIT) totaled $57.2m, as a result the operating margin for 1Q 2014 was 5.2%.