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Saturday, June 28, 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.


West Star Aviation welcomes Terry Lutrick as Regional Sales Manager

June 26, 2014 · 110 Views

Terry Lutrick has joined the team of West Star Aviation as Regional Sales Manager. Terry will be responsible for assisting West Star customers in California, Nevada, and Arizona. With nearly 44 years of experience in the aviation industry, Terry received his A&P Mechanic License in 1970, and has since gained extensive experience through the numerous positions he has held throughout his career. In 2013, Terry received NBAA’s “Maintenance Safety Award” for completing 43 years of safe maintenance practices.


PEMCO redelivers 737-400 freighter for Swiftair’s partner, Air Ghana

June 26, 2014 · 137 Views

PEMCO World Air Services (PEMCO) announced the redelivery of a 737-400 PTF (MSN 25163) for SwiftAir’s new partner in West Africa, Air Ghana. The freighter, which was delivered last month, has entered service and is the first of several converted freighters planned for delivery over the next three years for the new cargo operation. The 11-pallet freighter was converted at PEMCO’s headquarters in Tampa, Florida.


NHI delivers 200th NH90 Helicopter

June 26, 2014 · 87 Views

NHI announced  the 200th NH90 helicopter delivery. The 200th NH90, a TTH (Tactical Transport Helicopter) variant, was delivered officially to Belgian Defence and will be operated from Beauvechain Air Force Base by the 1st Wing. The handover ceremony took place during the annual NH90 Product Conference being held this year at the German Army Aviation School in Bückeburg, where the whole NH90 community of users and industry is gathered to share their experiences.


SR Technics and Swiss AviationSoftware offer joint AMOS interface solution

June 26, 2014 · 124 Views

SR Technics and Swiss AviationSoftware have jointly implemented integrated system interfaces between AMOS and SR Technics’ SAP. The new functionalities cover customer requirements for an “all in one” system solution and will improve efficiency, transparency and ultimately on-time-delivery. Four interfaces mark the start of further interface functionalities planned for upcoming AMOS releases between fall 2014 and spring 2015. All functionalities will provide enhanced levels of service to customers in areas extending from Component Services to Aircraft Services.


New ARC shop at Hawker Pacific Aerospace

June 26, 2014 · 152 Views

Hawker Pacific Aerospace opened its new ARC (Airframe Related Component) shop in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Thereby the landing gear specialist broadens its product portfolio by adding services for thrust reversers. The facility has already received the first five thrust reverser units (V2500) of launch customer Spirit Airlines.  Dedicated to ARC services, Hawker Pacific Aerospace’s Fort Lauderdale facility currently serves as the hub of thrust reverser services for Lufthansa Technik’s customers within the Americas. The new shop spreads over 12,000 ft² and can handle the concurrent servicing of six to eight thrust reversers. It is equipped with all state-of-the-art tooling and equipment necessary to perform customized thrust reverser overhaul workscopes. Hawker Pacific Aerospace plans to build up capability in California and Florida for further thrust reverser types including CFM56-5B/-7, CF34-10E as well as Trent 1000 and/or GEnx-1B.


Wizz Air to get new aircraft hangar at Budapest

June 26, 2014 · 5139 Views

Wizz Air will have a new aircraft maintenance hangar in Budapest within a year’s time according to the agreement signed on Tuesday, June 24th, by Budapest Airport and Wizz Air. The signing of the new lease agreement for 15 years was timed to coincide with the 10th anniversary of Wizz Air’s operations in Hungary and the arrival of the 8th aircraft to its base in Budapest. A new maintenance and overhaul hangar will be built exclusively for Wizz Air aircraft at Budapest’s Liszt Ferenc International Airport according to the lease agreement. Budapest Airport will build the new facility by summer 2015 for Wizz Air to lease for 15 years. The investment by Budapest Airport is over €3m (or 900 million HUF) and the new facility will be handed over by August 2015 to Wizz Air. The new hangar will be built in – between the existing aircraft maintenance hangars operated by Lufthansa Technik and Aeroplex, with direct access to the maintenance apron. The new hangar, approx. 2,000 m², will be able to accommodate one aircraft at a time and its size will allow the new, sharklet-equipped Airbus A 321 Neo type aircraft that might join the Wizz fleet in the coming years.


Belavia Airlines orders three Next-Generation 737-800s

June 26, 2014 · 127 Views

Boeing and Belarus flag carrier Belavia Airlines have reached an agreement on an order for three Next-Generation 737-800 airplanes. Valued at $272m at current list prices, this is the first direct purchase of Boeing airplanes for Belavia.


Rolls-Royce powers Cessna Citation X+ into service

June 26, 2014 · 135 Views

Rolls-Royce has powered the first delivery of the new Cessna Citation X+, with AE 3007C2 engines. The AE 3007C2 is the latest variant of the AE 3007C engine that powers more than 300 Citation X aircraft in service today. The engine is fully supported by the Rolls-Royce CorporateCare engine management and services programme, which now covers more than 1,500 aircraft. The AE 3007 family of engines has accumulated more than 50 million flight hours.


GA Telesis CRGSE expands electric power offerings to include A320 APU starter generator capability

June 26, 2014 · 143 Views

GA Telesis Component Repair Group Southeast has upgraded its state-of-the-art Avtron Model K838AT-500 IDG/Starter Generator test stand for use on the A320 APU Starter Generator. Upgrades were made as part of a continuing initiative to expand the shop’s testing capabilities for power generating components. “The flexibility of our Avtron test stand allows quick and easy set up for virtually any IDG or Generator in operation today,” said Nicholas Gimbel, Engineering Manager for GAT CRGSE. “With the addition of various adapters, harnesses and software upgrades we can easily add repair/overhaul capability to test new product more efficiently and with greater precision,” he added.


Condor announces interline agreement with Sun Country Airlines

June 27, 2014 · 177 Views

Condor has added Sun Country Airlines as an interline partner that expands its reach to popular American destinations through Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Condor passengers can now fly non-stop from Frankfurt to Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport Terminal 2 on Mondays and Thursdays, then take connecting Sun Country flights to cities such as Dallas/Ft.Worth (DFW), Seattle (SEA), Los Angeles (LAX) or Chicago (MDW). Further, expansion of markets is planned for the summer of 2015.


Aerial Power Lines pioneers aerial power grid services in Malaysia with Airbus Helicopters

June 27, 2014 · 130 Views

The delivery of Airbus Helicopters’ initial two rotorcraft to Aerial Power Lines Sdn Bhd (APL) will enable this Malaysian operator to offer competitive solutions for electrical power line construction, maintenance and surveillance – furthering the country‟s evolution as a developed nation. Provided to APL during a ceremony today at the Airbus Helicopters Malaysia subsidiary in Subang were an AS350 B3e and EC135 T2e, which are the evolved versions of the manufacturer‟s workhorse single-engine AS350 Ecureuil family and its popular twin-engine EC135 product line. APL is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sarawak Cable Berhad (SCABLE), and the only company approved by the Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia to perform aerial power line operations in the country.


Air France inaugurates first Boeing 777 equipped with new cabins

June 27, 2014 · 213 Views

Air France inaugurated its first Boeing 777 equipped with its new cabins. Flight AF008 took off from Paris-Charles de Gaulle on June 24th for New York. For the first time, customers were able to enjoy the new Economy cabin, offering optimum travel comfort, and Premium Economy, with 40% additional space. They also discovered the new Business class, a real cocoon in the sky. These cabins are being progressively installed on 44 Boeing 777, the heart of Air France’s long-haul fleet. The Group had already announced an investment of €700m in new cabins, including €500m for Air France and €200m for KLM. With the planned upgrading of both airlines’ Airbus A330 and Air France’s A380 over the next few years, the Air France-KLM Group will invest a total of more than €1bn by 2017 in the upgrading of its products and services for its customers.


Curtiss-Wright awarded contract by Aerolineas Argentinas

June 27, 2014 · 146 Views

Curtiss-Wright Corporation reported that its Sensors & Controls division has entered into a six-year comprehensive agreement with Aerolineas Argentinas to provide product support for multiple components used on Aerolineas Argentinas’ Boeing 737 New Generation (NG) fleet. Under the agreement, Curtiss-Wright will provide maintenance, repair and overhaul support for components manufactured by Curtiss-Wright for Boeing and additional products manufactured by other suppliers. The estimated potential lifetime value of the contract is approximately $1.5m. The support services provided under the agreement, which commenced in 2013, are scheduled to run through the end of 2019.


Premier Aviation Overhaul Center signs long-term heavy maintenance contract with Atlas Air

June 27, 2014 · 189 Views

Premier Aviation Overhaul Center and Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings announced the signing of a two-year Agreement plus options for the provision of airframe heavy maintenance on Atlas Air’s fleet of B767-200/300 and B747-400 aircraft.  The contract between Premier and Atlas Air follows a successful 2013 season with the delivery of 26 aircraft maintenance events and provides Atlas with secured hangar capacity at Premier’s Rome, New York facility for scheduled heavy maintenance and modifications into the foreseeable future.


Riku Aho appointed Managing Director of Finnair Aircraft Finance

June 27, 2014 · 228 Views

Riku Aho has been nominated as the Managing Director of Finnair Aircraft Finance and its subsidiary Finnair ATR Finance from July 1st, 2014. Mr. Aho has previously served as Assistant Vice President at Finnair Aircraft Finance. Finnair Aircraft Finance is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Finnair responsible for aircraft procurement and fleet asset management.