Tuesday, July 22, 2014
AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert
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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
July 21, 2014 · 113 Views
Avia Solutions Group, a WSE listed global provider of one-stop-shop aviation business solutions, and Kaunas Free Economic Zone Management UAB have signed a memorandum of cooperation with regard to the development of a new Aviation Park in the territory of the Kaunas Free Economic Zone, Lithuania. Upon the successful implementation of all project stages the local economy will be infused with almost US$40m and the new Aviation Park will become the largest and most innovative centre of aviation services in Lithuania. The new Aviation Park in Kaunas is a major project aimed at attracting various local and foreign companies engaged in providing a wide spectrum of aviation related services, such as maintenance and repair of aircraft engine, landing gear and other components, aircraft tear down and sales as well as aviation-related scientific researches. The new centre is planned to occupy the territory of up to 100 ha, located next to Kaunas International Airport.
July 21, 2014 · 361 Views
For MTU Aero Engines, this year’s Farnborough International Airshow was a big success: Germany’s leading engine manufacturer has announced around €1.3bn in orders, with new business being at the same level as at the last Farnborough Airshow. The largest share of new orders came from the GE9X for the Boeing 777X, in which MTU has recently announced its stake. Emirates and Qatar Airways from the Gulf region are the biggest customers, who placed firm orders for GE9X engines to equip 200 Boeing aircraft and took out options for 100 more GE9X-powered jets. MTU also profits from orders for Boeing 787s: Lessor ALC has selected the GEnx engine to power 30 Dreamliners. A similarly high volume of orders was received for the geared turbofan (GTF) engines. The largest GTF order was received from Mexican carrier VivaAerobus, and another deal was signed with Philippine Airlines, with a total order tally of 50 aircraft with PurePower PW1100G engines for the carriers’ A320neo fleets. The PW1500G, which is the GTF variant to power Bombardier’s CSeries, also scored big. The Canadian aircraft manufacturer racked up firm orders and inked letters of intent for a total of 67 aircraft from United-Kingdom-based Falko Regional Aircraft, China-based Zhejiang Loong Airlines, Jordan-based Petra Airlines, Abu Dhabi-based Falcon Aviation Services and two unidentified customers. Agreements for firm orders and purchase rights were also signed for 50 of the Japanese Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ), which is powered by the PW1200G geared turbofan, the customers being U.S. start-up Eastern Air Lines and regional carrier Air Mandalay in Myanmar. The PW1700G and PW1900G, the latest additions to the GTF family of engines, will power airframer Embraer’s new E2 jets. Trans States Holdings has placed orders and taken out options for 100 E175 E2 jets equipped with PW1700G engines. The Brazilian Azul Airlines has selected the PW1900G engine for the 50 E195 E2 jets the carrier has on firm order or option. Demand for the engine powering the current A320 family of aircraft, IAE’s V2500, continues to be strong. At the Farnborough Airshow, Singapore-based aircraft leasing company BOC Aviation and the airlines Vueling, VivaAerobus and Saudi Gulf placed orders for this type of propulsion system.
July 21, 2014 · 150 Views
Tianjin Airlines announced an order for 20 CF34-10E-powered EMBRAER E190 aircraft. The engine order is valued at more than $300m list price. As the largest regional airlines in China, Tianjin Airlines already have an extensive fleet of CF34-powered EMBRAER E190s in service that have proven themselves as exceptionally durable and reliable.
July 21, 2014 · 72 Views
Mechanics and Related, Fleet Service, and Maintenance Training Specialists workgroups at US Airways, represented by the International Association of Machinists (IAM), ratified three collective bargaining agreements on July 19th, covering more than 11,000 employees. The agreements will remain in effect for the US Airways employees until a joint collective bargaining agreement covering the 30,000 employees of the new American Airlines has been reached.
July 21, 2014 · 101 Views
American Airlines promoted Don Casey to Senior Vice President – Revenue Management, responsible for all of American’s passenger pricing and yield management activity for the worldwide network of approximately 6,700 daily flights and more than $40bn in annual revenue. Casey will continue to oversee the pricing of fare and merchandising products, inventory management, upgrades, frequent flyer redemption, the revenue management activities for joint business agreements and the development of industry-leading revenue management tools and systems.
July 21, 2014 · 145 Views
Pratt & Whitney has signed a depot activation contract with Aerospace Industrial Maintenance (AIM) Norway to establish a Maintenance, Repair, Overhaul, & Upgrade (MRO&U) capability for the F135 engine which powers the F-35 Lightning II fighter aircraft. This initial contract will include planning and management activities required for depot activation in 2018. Follow-on contracts are expected in support of the establishment of F135 depot capabilities, including assembly, disassembly, cleaning, inspection and testing at the AIM Norway facility located in Gardermoen, Norway.
July 21, 2014 · 212 Views
AAR, a leading, global aerospace and defense company, reported fourth quarter and full Fiscal Year 2014 consolidated results. Fourth quarter consolidated sales were $505.4m versus the prior year level of $553.8m. Sales in the Aviation Services segment declined 10% to $373.8m mainly due to softness at the Company’s MRO facilities and fewer expeditionary airlift flying positions. Sales in the Technology Products segment declined 4% to $131.6m, primarily due to lower sales of commercial cargo systems. Consolidated gross profit margin for the fourth quarter on a reported basis was 17.0%, an improvement over the adjusted gross profit margin of 16.3% in prior year period.
Full Fiscal Year 2014 consolidated sales were $2.04bn. Aviation Services segment sales declined 3% to $1.56bn as a result of lower airlift support and lower activity in MRO. Technology Products segment sales declined 9% to $475.0m driven by an expected decline in demand for mobility products and lower commercial cargo sales. Sales to commercial customers were 59% of total sales as compared to 61% in fiscal 2013, with remainder of the sales to government and defense customers.
July 21, 2014 · 148 Views
Fokker Elmo, a business unit of Fokker Technologies and SASMOS HET Technologies have signed agreements for producing electrical wiring interconnection systems in Bangalore, India. Recognizing the Indian aviation market is one of the fastest growing and most dynamic aviation markets in the world, aircraft manufacturers have the need for Indian Industrial Participation, presenting an excellent business development opportunity for Fokker Elmo and SASMOS. Over time, this Indian business model is expected to grow to attractive values for both companies.
July 21, 2014 · 149 Views
Héroux-Devtek, a leading Canadian manufacturer of aerospace products, has renewed an important multi-year contract with Bell Helicopter for the manufacturing of components and assemblies for several helicopter programs. Under the terms of the agreement, Héroux-Devtek will manufacture the main rotor hub and the tail rotor hub for the new Bell 505 Jet Ranger X, as well as for the Bell 206B and Bell 206L helicopter models. Héroux-Devtek will also manufacture tail rotor hubs, as well as other drive system components, for the Bell 212, Bell 407 and Bell 412 aircraft. The contract renewal spans a five-year period ranging from calendar year 2015 through calendar year 2019 and calls for the production of components for new aircraft and the aftermarket. Based on current program expectations, the total value of this multi-year agreement could exceed $46m.
July 21, 2014 · 262 Views
LOT Polish Airlines has selected Liebherr-Aerospace Lindenberg GmbH, to overhaul the main and nose landing gear systems of their Embraer E-Jet E1 fleet, which comprises E170 and E175 aircraft. The contract was signed at the Farnborough International Airshow. In addition to MRO services, it includes an integrated support solution, which covers spare parts and engineering services and enables partial risk-sharing between Liebherr-Aerospace and LOT. LOT, the launch customer of the Embraer E-170 aircraft, has the first scheduled E-Jet landing gear overhauls in Europe. Following the successful overhaul campaign Liebherr perfomed for LOT’s ERJ 145 aircraft, and based on Liebherr’s experience, support package and the companies’ existing business relationship, LOT has again chosen Liebherr.