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Tuesday, September 23, 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.


Ethiopian Airlines signs order with Boeing for 20 737 MAX 8s

September 22, 2014 · 91 Views

Boeing and Ethiopian Airlines announced an order for 20 737 MAX 8s. The order, previously unidentified on the Boeing Orders & Deliveries website, is worth more than $2.1bn at list prices and also includes options and purchase rights for a further 15 737 MAX 8s. The order represents the largest single Boeing order by number of airplanes from an African carrier. “Today’s order underlines our commitment to our 15-year strategic plan, ‘Vision 2025′, in which Ethiopian will strive to become the leading airline group in Africa carrying 18 million passengers per annum,” said Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO of Ethiopian Airlines, during a visit to the Association for the Promotion of Tourism to Africa National Forum in Chicago. “The 737 MAX will form a key component of that strategic vision, enhancing our single-aisle fleet and keeping us at the forefront of African aviation.”


Liebherr-Aerospace Toulouse SAS inaugurates new logistics center

September 22, 2014 · 88 Views

Liebherr-Aerospace Toulouse SAS, center of excellence for aerospace air management systems within the Liebherr Group of Companies, has added a new logistics center to the infrastructure of its site in Toulouse (France). Many guests, including representatives from institutions and industry, were present at the inauguration ceremony on September 19, 2014. The new logistics center, which represents an investment of €11.5 million, houses all functions of the supply chain on 6,300 m² of floor space – incoming goods, incoming goods inspection, stores, outgoing goods inspection and shipping. Also, the building provides office space for purchasing, supplier quality control and other logistics support functions as well as for sales administration. Outfitted with the latest technologies, the logistics center is able to process 130,000 components and several hundred thousand spare parts annually, thus meeting the highest requirements of quality, traceability and on-time delivery. Moreover, the building is made of materials that meet the highest standards of thermal performance, and water solar energy is used to heat water. With its new facility, Liebherr-Aerospace Toulouse SAS is not only responding to growth in its markets, but also to increasing customer demands regarding industrial performance.


Recycled cooking oil powers Finnair flight to New York

September 22, 2014 · 118 Views

Finnair will operate its flight from Helsinki to New York on September 23rd, with an Airbus A330 using environmentally sustainable biofuel, coinciding with the UN Climate Summit taking place in New York on the same day. As a leader in the sustainable development of commercial aviation, the airline believes strongly in proactive measures to manage environmental performance. Most of an airline’s environmental impact arises from aircraft emissions during flight, and switching to a more sustainable fuel source can reduce net CO2 emissions by between 50 and 80%. The biofuel mixture powering the flight to New York, provided by SkyNRG Nordic – a joint venture between SkyNRG and Statoil Aviation – is partly manufactured from cooking oil recycled from restaurants, an example of a biofuel alternative to ordinary jet fuel that significantly reduces net greenhouse gas emissions while also being sustainable in its own right. Finnair and its partners insist on the cultivation of biofuel sources that neither compete with food production nor damage biodiversity. Aviation biofuel is a proven and exhaustively tested technology – Finnair first flew with biofuel in 2011 – but at more than twice the price of conventionally produced jet fuel, it is not yet economically viable for any airline to operate with exclusively. This demonstration flight is made possible thanks in part to cooperation with Airbus and SkyNRG Nordic. Along with its partners Finnair is also currently investigating the possibility of establishing a biofuel hub at Helsinki Airport. Finnair is active as well in the Nordic Initiative for Sustainable Aviation, a group of airlines, airport operators, manufacturers and government ministries working to accelerate the development of sustainable biofuel for aviation in the Nordic countries.


AMAC Turkey broadens MRO capabilities

September 22, 2014 · 93 Views

AMAC Aerospace, a leading provider of corporate aviation maintenance and completion services, is returning to the 10th AIREX Istanbul Air Show, the international civil aviation and airports exhibition at Ataturk Airport (September 25th to 28th) with a raft of new maintenance approvals. AMAC Turkey, created two years ago, recently achieved approval from The Directorate General of Civil Aviation Turkey (DGCA) to perform base and line maintenance up to C Check on Dassault Falcon 900Ex Easy, 2000 and 2000Ex EASy models. Hard on the heels of this, the company, hopes to add European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) approval for all these Dassault models in November as an extension of its current EASA part-145 certificate coverage. In addition, AMAC Turkey expects to achieve EASA and DGCA approval for line maintenance up to A Check for the Dassault Falcon 7x in 2015 Q1. AMAC is currently working with the US FAA to obtain FAR 145 approval in order to serve customers with US ´N´ registered Dassault Falcon and Pilatus PC-12 turboprop aircraft which require maintenance when coming in and out of Turkey. AMAC Turkey at Ataturk Airport has enjoyed a successful 12 months, with highlights including approval as a Dassault Falcon Authorised Service Centre in April, plus maintenance approvals for the Falcon 900B and Falcon 900EX EASy from the DGCA in October 2013 and from EASA in January 2014.


GECAS completes purchase and leaseback with Philippine Airlines for two Airbus A321s

September 22, 2014 · 121 Views

GE Capital Aviation Services Limited (GECAS), the commercial aircraft leasing arm of GE, today announced the completion of a purchase-and-leaseback transaction with Philippine Airlines involving two new Airbus A321 aircraft. The two aircraft — one delivered in August, and the other earlier this month — will be used to expand the airline’s fleet. Philippine Airlines, the flag carrier of the Philippines, operates a fleet of some 50 aircraft to more than 40 destinations.


AIM Aviation acquires Altitude from Air New Zealand

September 22, 2014 · 138 Views

AIM Aviation, the UK-based leading designer of custom cabin interiors for the world`s major airlines, acquired Altitude Aerospace Interiors from Air New Zealand. Altitude Aerospace Interiors, based in New Zealand, is a leading designer of custom cabin interiors and is ideally situated for the Far East and Australasian markets, thereby complementing AIM’s strong presence in Europe, the Middle East and North America. The market-leading services of AIM and Altitude cover the entire cabin interior from cockpit to rear pressure bulkhead, including premium monuments and bar units, lounges, seat modules, galleys and stowages. All inspirationally designed, meticulously engineered and beautifully crafted. With aircraft manufacturers’ backlogs at an all-time high, the global commercial aviation industry is expected to benefit significantly from the increase in air traffic anticipated in the next few years. With its strong reputation for engineering capabilities and customer service, Altitude’s addition to the AIM ‎Aviation group strengthens its position in this exciting and rapidly growing market.


Airstream arranges purchase and onward lease of one ATR42-500

September 22, 2014 · 127 Views

Airstream International Group has arranged, in collaboration with a large US based lessor, the purchase and onward lease of one ATR42-500 to Hevilift Group. MSN497, previously owned and operated by Danish Air Transport, Denmark, will be used on dedicated mining contracts in Papua New Guinea. This is the second ATR aircraft transaction that Airstream has completed involving both DAT and Hevilift. The aircraft will shortly ferry to Cairns, Australia where it will undergo pre service modifications before joining the Hevilift operation.


Steven Boecker joins AerSale as Vice President Sales

September 22, 2014 · 241 Views

Steven Boecker has joined the AerSale team as Vice President Sales to augment the Company’s global engine and aircraft marketing efforts. Boecker’s appointment will further enhance AerSale’s global reach within the aviation aftermarket services and materials industry. Boecker most recently served as Sales Director – Global Leasing Team for Pratt & Whitney / International Aero Engines.


IAG converts eight A330-200 options into firm orders

September 22, 2014 · 122 Views

IAG has decided to convert eight A330-200 options, previously announced, into firm orders for Spain’s flag carrier Iberia, which will become a new operator of the A330-200. The aircraft will be delivered from the end 2015 and will be equipped with GE CF6 engines. Iberia’s all Airbus fleet already includes eight A330-300s.


Airbus Group and Aerion announce technology collaboration

September 22, 2014 · 121 Views

Airbus Group and Aerion Corporation have agreed to collaborate on technologies associated with the future of high-performance flight. To further their mutual objectives, both companies will exchange knowledge and capabilities in design, manufacturing and certification. For Aerion, this means collaboration to advance the development and commercialization of the Aerion AS2 supersonic business jet. Under the agreement, Airbus Group, through its Defence and Space division, will provide technical and certification support, which will include the assignment of senior engineering staff to Aerion’s expanding development organization. Aerion and Airbus Defence and Space professionals will work together at Aerion’s new and larger engineering offices in Reno, Nevada. Over the longer term, Aerion will provide proprietary technology and assistance to Airbus Group in its high-performance aircraft technology development. These technologies include Aerion’s extensive research, its proprietary design tools and patented aerodynamic designs. The joint effort provides expanded engineering capabilities to Aerion as it enters a design phase in which propulsion systems, structures, avionics and equipment are specified and sourced. Under the current timeline, Aerion is targeting first flight of the AS2 in the 2019 timeframe. Initial collaboration activities have commenced between engineering teams from Aerion and Airbus Defence and Space, which is Airbus Group’s principal liaison organization for AS2 development.