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Friday, July 04, 2014

AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert

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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.


AviaAM Leasing delivers first Boeing 737-700 to SCAT Airlines

July 2, 2014 · 122 Views

AviaAM Leasing reported the delivery of a Boeing 737-700 to one of major Kazakhstan’s carriers – SCAT Airlines. The aircraft is the first Boeing 737-700 in the carrier’s fleet. Under the latest cooperation, AviaAM Leasing has conducted cabin renewal and livery change works, as well as increased the aircraft’s maximum take-off weight and enhanced the power of the engines. Following the customization works, the aircraft has been delivered to the SCAT’s base airport at Shymkent International Airport (CIT).


LATAM Airlines Group selects Flatirons for Boeing and Airbus fleets

July 2, 2014 · 112 Views

Flatirons Solutions released that LATAM Airlines Group, the leading airline in Latin America, has selected its manufacturer-independent, content lifecycle management (CLM) solution to manage LATAM’s maintenance and engineering documentation for the group’s Boeing and Airbus fleets of more than 300 aircraft. The choice of Flatirons’ suite of products enables LATAM to meet technical documentation requirements for its existing and new-generation aircraft, including Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner and the Airbus A350, in a single system.


Eija Hakakari appointed Finnair’s SVP Human Resources

July 2, 2014 · 81 Views

Eija Hakakari has been appointed Finnair’s Senior Vice President, Human Resources and a member of Finnair’s Executive Board. She will start in her new role by the end of 2014. She succeeds Finnair’s current SVP Human Resources Manne Tiensuu, who leaves Finnair on August 31st, 2014.


Delta reports operating performance for June 2014

July 2, 2014 · 100 Views

Delta Air Lines reported June 2014 system traffic increased 3.0% compared to the previous year, while system capacity for the month was up 3.1%. System load factor for June was the same as in June 2013, 87.5%.


Brazilian Navy signs contract for Lynx Mk21A upgrade

July 2, 2014 · 129 Views

The Brazilian Navy’s Naval Aviation has signed a contract for a major midlife upgrade of eight Lynx Mk21A helicopters. The contract, valued in excess of US$160m (€117m), includes replacement of the aircraft’s engines with the CTS800-4N product from LHTEC, navigation, displays suite and mission avionics. A comprehensive support and training package that includes a Flight Training Device is also included in the contract. The upgrade activities will begin in mid-2015 at AgustaWestland’s plant in Yeovil, United Kingdom, with the first helicopter scheduled to be delivered back to the customer in the Autumn of 2017. The complete batch of upgraded aircraft is planned to be delivered by early 2019.


Airbus’ first A320neo reaches completion

July 2, 2014 · 200 Views

The assembly of Airbus’ first A320neo has been completed following painting of the aircraft and the mounting of Pratt & Whitney PW1100G-JM engines. MSN6101, which will be the first A320neo to fly, will soon start its ground tests to prepare for first flight. The flight test campaign for the A320neo will kick-off in September 2014, paving the way for Entry Into Service in Q4 2015. The A320neo “new engine option” incorporates many innovations, including latest generation engines and large Sharklet wing-tip devices, which together deliver 1% in fuel savings and a reduction of 3,600 tonnes of C02 per aircraft per year. With a total of nearly 2,700 orders received from more than 50 customers since its launch in 2010, the A320neo Family has captured some 60% of the market.


VAS Aero Services signs parts management and distribution agreement with Southwest Airlines

July 2, 2014 · 314 Views

VAS Aero Services, a global leader in aviation logistics and aftermarket services, announced it has entered into a five-year surplus parts management and distribution agreement with Southwest Airlines to manage the airline’s surplus parts inventory from its fleet of Boeing 737 aircraft. This agreement will give VAS’s global 737 Classic and Next Generation customer base access to an expanded pool of surplus inventory, helping VAS further enhance its service and support to customers worldwide. The inventory distribution will be managed from VAS’s Seattle, WA facility, which also manages surplus inventory for The Boeing Company.


Nordwind Airlines partners with Fokker to introduce EFB for iPad on Airbus and Boeing fleet

July 2, 2014 · 152 Views

Fokker Services, part of Fokker Technologies, has received an order from Nordwind Airlines for the introduction of the Fokker Services EFB solution for iPad on Nordwind Airlines’ A320, B737, B757, B767 and B777 fleet. The Fokker Services EFB solution for iPad is a Class 2B, EASA-certified installation including mounting and power supply. Its simplicity allows the advantages of an EFB to be achieved at a fraction of the cost and downtime of other solutions currently being offered. The solution has been sold for nearly 500 aircraft.


Associated Aircraft Group adds fifth S-76 Helicopter to aircraft fleet

July 2, 2014 · 117 Views

Associated Aircraft Group, the East Coast’s premier executive helicopter service, has announced the addition of its fifth Sikorsky S-76 helicopter to its fleet of managed aircraft. The addition of this helicopter increases the total AAG fleet to nine aircraft throughout the Northeast. AAG has the largest fleet of Sikorsky S-76 aircraft available for charter and fractional ownership in the Northeast. The latest S-76 helicopter in AAG’s fleet is a modern Sikorsky executive-configured VIP helicopter, with a finely appointed and spacious eight passenger luxury interior.


Precision Aviation Services names Adrienne Robinson VP, Business Development

July 3, 2014 · 124 Views

Atlanta-based Precision Aviation Group has named Adrienne Robinson Vice President, Business Development. Prior to her new appointment, Robinson served PAG in dual roles: She joined the company as Vice President, Business Development in 2012 and three months later was asked to take on the additional role of President, Precision Aviation Services (PAS) in Peachtree City, GA.


E195 starts operation with Aurigny Air Services

July 3, 2014 · 98 Views

Expanding Guernsey, Channel Islands-based regional carrier Aurigny Air Services took delivery of an E195 which will be used to add capacity on the carrier’s Guernsey – London Gatwick route. The E195 is configured with 122 slim seats in a single-class layout and is the first commercial jet for the airline. Aurigny will fly up to four daily return flights with the E195 between Guernsey and London Gatwick.


TRU Simulation + Training acquires ProFlight

July 3, 2014 · 90 Views

TRU Simulation + Training, a Textron company, has acquired ProFlight, a leader in innovative and advanced pilot training. Based in Carlsbad, Calif., ProFlight is an FAA-approved Part 142 training center specializing in Cessna Citation CJ Series training, Cessna Conquest Series training, and offers an innovative continuous currency program that provides pilots greater training flexibility and year-round proficiency. Founded in 1988 by professional pilot instructors who saw a need for high-quality flight training at a lower cost, ProFlight has trained thousands of pilots and continues to grow as its innovative training model appeals to a broad range of pilots – from owner operators to corporate aviation departments. ProFlight will continue to operate from its Carlsbad facility.


Etihad Regional becomes launch customer for ATR’s iPad mount system with power interface

July 3, 2014 · 141 Views

Darwin Airline, recently rebranded Etihad Regional has become a launch customer for ATR’s optimal onboard tablet-based system for the airline’s electronic flight bag (EFB) initiative. The adaptable ATR iPad mount system with the integrated power interface module will be deployed to provide an installed platform for holding the Apple iPad device, as well as supply certified connectivity to aircraft power for device charging. The integrated system will allow Etihad Regional to realize maximum functionality of the iPad Air tablet as a deployed EFB platform. The Etihad Regional EFB program will be implemented on all ATRs in its fleet with installations planned to take place in second half of 2014.


ThyssenKrupp Aerospace opens new office in Singapore

July 3, 2014 · 152 Views

ThyssenKrupp Aerospace has again expanded its Asian/Pacific presence. Besides its locations in India, China, Taiwan and Australia, the aerospace specialist has now opened a sales office in Singapore. “The new office in Singapore is another step toward expanding our Asian/Pacific operations,” explains Greg Shanley, Vice President, Asia Pacific. With now five locations ThyssenKrupp Aerospace has a unique network within the region.


Air France launches new private jet service

July 3, 2014 · 212 Views

Air France is offering its La Première customers with connections at Paris-Charles de Gaulle a new way to travel which is faster and easier. An exclusive trip from departure to destination with attention to detail: an exceptional offer. Air France, in partnership with Wijet, is offering a new range of private jet services. This service is exclusively dedicated to connecting passengers at Paris-Charles de Gaulle, before or after their long-haul flight on Air France in the La Première cabin and their travel companions traveling in the Business cabin. The private jet services are operated by Wijet in Cessna Citation Mustang-type aircraft, which can take-off from or to 1,200 airports in France in Europe within two and a half hours of Paris, an ideal solution for flying to a destination which is not served by a major airport or which is closer to home. Customers can also choose their own departure time. At the jet’s departure airport, departure procedures are simplified. There are no check-in formalities and boarding is immediate. At the arrival airport, customers disembark with their baggage without waiting.


IAG reports June traffic results

July 3, 2014 · 133 Views

International Airlines Group reported June 2014 traffic increase of 5.9% versus 2013, while Group capacity increased by 8.5% year over year. Group load factor was down 2.1 points to 82.7%.