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Saturday, June 14, 2014

AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert

This is an overview of all articles linked within the selected daily newsletter.
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Emirates reject Delta’s apology regarding Anderson’s 9/11 comments

February 20, 2015 · 556 Views

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


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

February 20, 2015 · 655 Views

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


Design flaws led to 787 battery fire

December 2, 2014 · 197 Views

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


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

November 5, 2014 · 164 Views

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


Air France-KLM selects GEnx engines for Boeing 787 fleet

March 25, 2014 · 113 Views

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


ILFC closes $1.5bn senior secured term loan

March 7, 2014 · 80 Views

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


Airbus Commercial reports another year of financial improvement

February 26, 2014 · 80 Views

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


Boeing Commercial Airplanes reports full year revenue of $53bn

January 29, 2014 · 76 Views

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


A350 XWB in Bolivia for high altitude testing

January 9, 2014 · 67 Views

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


Firefly welcomes first ATR 72-600

July 5, 2013 · 66 Views

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


GE’s Passport engine begins first full engine test

June 26, 2013 · 42 Views

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


Rolls-Royce wins order from CIT to power 23 aircraft

May 22, 2013 · 55 Views

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


Crane Aerospace & Electronics selects Topcast Aviation as authorized distributor to APAC market

June 12, 2014 · 138 Views

Crane Aerospace & Electronics has appointed Hong Kong-based Topcast Aviation Supplies, a leader in the sales, distribution and maintenance of aircraft parts and systems, as an authorized distributor for the A320 Crane Landing Gear Control Interface Unit (LGCIU). Under the terms of the agreement, Topcast will serve as the exclusive distributor for the Crane LGCIU in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region, including China, Korea, India, Thailand and Australia. Crane’s A320 LGCIU senses and controls the position of the landing gear, landing gear doors, and cargo doors, and provides health monitoring status. The Crane LGCIU provides higher reliability and improved fault detection and fault isolation benefits, reducing maintenance costs and improving aircraft dispatch rates. The Crane LGCIU has been standard on all A320 family aircraft produced since October 2010. Topcast will offer the enhanced LGCIU as a retrofit upgrade to customers with aircraft produced prior to October 2010.


Microturbo (Safran) e-APU60 is certified by FAA

June 12, 2014 · 93 Views

Microturbo (Safran) reported that its new e-APU60 power system is certified by the American FAA (Federal Aviation Administration). The e-APU60 has been specially designed to meet the demands of new-generation more-electric aircraft. It is characterized by an excellent power-to-weight ratio and exceptional compactness. Tests performed last year on the new-generation AgustaWestland AW189 helicopter validated its excellent reliability and its endurance in extreme operating conditions, as well as its impressive performance in normal flight conditions. On May 31st of last year, the e-APU60 received the highest level of EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) civil certification (category 1 for essential use). In addition to ground starting the main engines, supplying power to the electrical systems and providing air conditioning for the AgustaWestland AW189, the e-APU60 is also capable of restarting the engines in flight and providing an additional source of power required to cover all electrical needs throughout the flight envelope. Flight safety is therefore optimized.


Precision Aircraft Solutions to begin first full freighter conversion of winglet-modified 757-200 aircraft

June 12, 2014 · 135 Views

Precision Aircraft Solutions has just signed an agreement with Canadian airline Cargojet to perform the world’s first 15-pallet passenger-to-freighter conversion of a winglet-modified 757-200 aircraft. The converted aircraft will fly long-distance routes in Canada, thereby benefitting from the fuel savings made possible by the winglets. The conversion will begin in June with redelivery later this year, and will take place in Goodyear, Ariz., at the facility of AeroTurbine, an esteemed Precision partner.


Boeing, Japanese partners reach agreement on 777X supplier work

June 12, 2014 · 115 Views

Boeing has reached an agreement with five key Japanese partners for significant work on the new 777X airplane. Japan Aircraft Industries (JAI) and Japan Aircraft Development Corporation (JADC) have signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to provide approximately 21% of the major airplane structure components for the 777X, including fuselage sections; center wing sections; pressure bulkheads; main landing gear wells; passenger, cargo and main landing gear doors; wing components and wing-body fairings. JAI is a consortium of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI), Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI), ShinMaywa Industries (SMIC) and NIPPI Corporation (NIPPI). JADC is a non-profit foundation established to enhance the competitiveness of the Japanese aircraft industry.


FLY Leasing sells four older aircraft

June 12, 2014 · 188 Views

FLY Leasing, a global lessor of modern commercial jet aircraft, has sold four aircraft from its portfolio. The four aircraft have an average age of 14 years and the sales will further reduce the age of FLY’s fleet. The sales generated a gain over FLY’s net book value. FLY has now sold five aircraft in the second quarter.


Kagoshima International Aviation orders one GrandNew EMS helicopter

June 12, 2014 · 135 Views

AgustaWestland and Kaigai Corporation of Japan released that Kagoshima International Aviation has placed an order for a GrandNew light twin helicopter to perform emergency medical service missions for Hakodate City Hospital in Southern Hokkaido. The aircraft, which is expected to enter service in early 2015, will be based at the Hakodate Airport. Kagoshima International Aviation already has a GrandNew in EMS configuration in service in the Kagoshima Prefecture.


Lion Group’s first Airbus aircraft rolls out of paintshop

June 12, 2014 · 159 Views

The first Airbus aircraft for Indonesia’s Lion Group has rolled out of the paint shop hangar in Toulouse, France. With the airline’s colourful livery, the aircraft will be delivered in Q3 2014 and will be operated by Lion Group’s full service unit Batik Air on its growing domestic and regional network. The aircraft is the first from a major order placed by the Lion Group in March 2013 for a total of 234 A320 Family aircraft (109 A320neo, 65 A321neo and 60 A320ceo).


Bombardier’s Challenger 350 jet receives Transport Canada certification

June 12, 2014 · 121 Views

Bombardier Aerospace announced that the Challenger 350 aircraft has been awarded Transport Canada (TC) certification. Bombardier expects certification from the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to be received shortly. “With Transport Canada certification of the Challenger 350 aircraft program in-hand, another significant milestone has been achieved,” said Stéphane Leblanc, Vice-President and General Manager, Challenger Programs, Bombardier Business Aircraft.


StandardAero Singapore signs agreement to become first independent Rolls-Royce authorized MRO facility for RR300 helicopter engines in Asia

June 12, 2014 · 152 Views

StandardAero has completed a license agreement with Rolls-Royce that designates the company’s Singapore facility as an Authorized Maintenance Repair and Overhaul Center (AMROC) for RR300 helicopter engines. This authorization, signed on May 16 of this year, follows StandardAero’s Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada RR300 AMROC agreement, signed in December, 2013. StandardAero’s Singapore repair shop is a state-of-the-art facility located at the Seletar Aerospace Park on a 32,300 square foot area with complete in-house capability. The new RR300 engine MRO line will run parallel to the facility’s Rolls-Royce M250 MRO line with full repair and overhaul and test capabilities. The Singapore license agreement will be in place through the end of 2021. As a result of this authorization, StandardAero is now open for business to serve RR300 engine operators and Robinson R66 helicopter dealers/distributors/service centers located in the Asia Pacific Region and Russia.


Airline Services Group appoints Mike Humphreys as CEO

June 13, 2014 · 167 Views

Airline Services Group, the Manchester-headquartered aviation services provider, has appointed Mike Humphreys as chief executive officer as the business looks to capitalise on continued growth in the commercial aerospace sector. Mr Humphreys replaces Bryan Bodek, who is stepping down to focus on other business interests. Humphreys joins Airline Services with nearly 30 years’ experience in international aviation services management, having held a number of senior roles in the industry, including CEO of FLS Aerospace, executive vice president of SR Technics, managing director of Oxford Aviation Academy and operations leader for Europe and Africa at CAE.


TIMCO secures CRJ200 interiors modification programme

June 13, 2014 · 184 Views

TIMCO Aviation Services began interiors modification work on the first CRJ200 aircraft in a fleet operated by a leading North American airline. TIMCO will retrofit more than three dozen of the same aircraft type, with all work being performed at the company’s Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul facility. The comprehensive programme involves a variety of updates to each aircraft interior, including recovering walls with new laminates, restoring overhead bins, adding lighting enhancements and refinishing passenger seats with new leather covers. TIMCO’s Cincinnati operation, an airframe MRO facility specialising in regional jet scheduled maintenance and modifications, will dedicate two continuous lines of work to the programme running through November.


Gogo receives STC from FAA and certification from the Japanese Civil Aviation Bureau

June 13, 2014 · 162 Views

Gogo, a leading communications service provider to the global aviation industry, has received an STC from the FAA and certification from the Japanese Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) – the aviation authority in Japan – to install Gogo’s Ku-satellite based connectivity service on Japan Airlines’ 737-800 aircraft. This is the fourth certification Gogo has received specific for JAL’s connectivity service and marks the last one needed to install JAL’s complete domestic fleet. Gogo has partnered with JAL to install connectivity service and Gogo Vision – Gogo’s wireless in-flight entertainment service – on JAL’s domestic fleet and the certification is a key milestone in the installation process.


Volaris selects Airbus as flight training provider

June 13, 2014 · 143 Views

Volaris, the low-cost airline serving Mexico and the US, has chosen “Training By Airbus” to provide A320 Family flight simulator training and courses in Miami and Mexico as part of an agreement which includes more than 25,000 flight training hours for 500 pilots. Volaris, an all-Airbus operator, has ordered a total of 74 aircraft to date and operates 47 A320 Family aircraft. Training of Volaris’ pilots has already begun at the Airbus Training Center in Miami, and in 2015, Airbus will provide the airline with flight training in Mexico City where it is based. With this new facility, Airbus plans to build on the expertise of its Miami Training Center to create a satellite flight training operation in Mexico City, which will also mark the opening of the first Airbus flight training centre in Latin America.


Ethiopian becomes largest African carrier by revenue and profit

June 13, 2014 · 229 Views

Ethiopian Airlines has become the largest African carrier by revenue and profit according to the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) latest airline ranking – published in the 58th edition of World Air Transport Statistics (WATS). With revenue topping $2.3bn in 2013, this is the first time Ethiopian Airlines has achieved such a ranking in its 69-year operating history. According to IATA, Ethiopian now ranks first in Africa and 37th in the world in terms of revenue and first in Africa and 18th in the world in terms of operating profit. The historical ranking achieved by Ethiopian in 2013 is a testimony to the confidence of its passengers; the soundness of its 15 year strategic roadmap of fast, profitable and sustainable growth, Vision 2025.


Avtrade acquires elusive Embraer stock

June 13, 2014 · 451 Views

Avtrade announced the acquisition of Embraer E-Jet inventory for E-170, E-175, E-190 and E-195 aircraft. Now available in the UK on sale, exchange or loan basis.