Kaplanian Report – June 2023


          Boeing adds 787-10 to 2023 ecoDemonstrator Program

Boeing intends this year to operate a 787-10 under its ecoDemonstrator program using that jet and a 777-200ER to evaluate technologies intended to improve aircraft efficiency.  On April 27 Boeing disclosed details about its planned 2023 ecoDemonstrator flights, saying the 787 will be the first of what it calls “ ecoDemonstrator Explorer” jets.

Boeing will use Explorer jets to “focus tests on specific technologies” while plain ecoDemonstrators serve as test beds for multiple technologies, Boeing says.   The first Explorer, the 787-10, “will conduct tests this month from Seattle to Tokyo, Singapore and Bangkok”, Boeing adds.

Under Boeing’s plantar traffic controllers in USA, Japan, Singapore and Thailand “collectively sequence the airplane’s routes to achieve the optimal flight path across multiple regions, factoring in conditions such as weather, air traffic and airspace closures”. Boeing says such coordination can improve operational efficiency and reduce fuel burn by 10%.

Boeing also intends to continue flying a 777-200ER as part of its 2023 ecoDemonstrator program.It will use that jet to test 19 technologies, including a “fibre-optic fuel-quantity sensor compatible” with sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and a “smart airport maps” application supplied by Boeing-owned Jeppesen and displayed on electronic flight bags intended to make safer and more efficient.

Additionally, Boeing will use the 777-200ER to test cargo-hold wall panels made from “40% recycled carbon fibre and 60% resin made from bio-based feedstock”, it says.Boeing plans to fuel the 777 partly with SAF for ecoDemonstrator flights.

Source: Boeing, Boeing

Boeing Orders And Deliveries for April

Boeing orders for April included the following:

BOC Aviation ordered three 737 Max, Luxair ordered two.

Orders from Unidentified customer included 11 737 Max, one 777F, plus 17 787.

On the delivery side Boeing delivered the following:

Boeing delivered 17 Max aircraft, one 787-9 to Gulf Air, one 787-9 to Qantas, one 787-10 to British Airways, one 787-9 to Air Canada, one 787-10 to Singapore Airlines and one 787-10 to EVA  Air.

In addition the company delivered one 777F to CES Leasing Corp of China and one 767-300F to FedEx and and a couple of P-8s to the Korean Air Force.

Source: Boeing             



                Airbus Expands Aircraft Storage and Recycling in China

Airbus has established a Chinese joint venture to expand the aircraft storage and recycling capabilities of specialist affiliate Tarmac Aerosave.  The Chinese facility to be located in Chengdu will have storage capability for 125 aircraft and its creation follows a provisional agreement reached in January of last year.

To be known as Airbus Lifecycle Services, the venture will also conduct maintenance, conversion and dismantling operations in a single center.  “The new center in Chengdu fits perfectly into Airbus’ approach to environmental responsibility across the entire aircraft lifecycle”, says airframer’s senior vice-president of customer services, Cristina Aguilar.

Airbus says the center will be “embedded in a complete eco-system” with aerospace manufacturing and service firms located in an adjacent Chengdu business district.  Tarmac Aerosave already has three European aircraft storage facilities sited in Tarbes, Terual and Toulouse Francazal.  Three-quarters of the aircraft stored at Chengdu will transition to a second lifecycle, the company states, while the remaining ones will be dismantled.

Source: Airbus, Picture Airbus

                               Airbus Orders and Deliveries in April

Airbus delivers 54 airplanes in April, bringing its total for the year to 181, down 5% from the same period a year ago but enough to re-establish an industrial lead over U.S. rival Boeing.

Airbus also sold five planes in April, all of them to undisclosed companies or private customers.  That brought new orders so far this year to 161 planes, or a net total of 144 after cancellations.      


                                   REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

                             Textron Aviation Hands Over 400th Citation CJ4

Textron Aviation marked the delivery of its 400th Citation CJ4 aircraft on April 25, a milestone reached 13 years after the aircraft entered the market in 2010.  The 400th copy, a CJ4 Gen 2, went to Koch Holdings of Eastern, Pennsylvania, with representatives from both companies attending a special delivery ceremony at Textron Aviation headquarters in Wichita.

“Our customers appreciate the quality and reliability’s well as the comfort and flexibility provided by the Cessna Citation CJ4 Gen2,” said Lannie O’Bannion, senior v-p of global sales and flight operations for Textron Aviation.  “This aircraft is a direct response to continued conversations with our customers.  Their input, combined with the excellent work by our employees, helped create an incredible aircraft.”

The CJ Gen2, the largest of Cessna’s light aircraft line, can seat 10 passengers and has a 1,040-pound baggage capacity.  Certified for single-pilot operations, the aircraft has a 2,165-nm range, can fly at speeds of 451 ktas, takeoff from 3,410-ft runways, and used for a range of missions from business and air ambulance operations to maritime patrol, search and rescue, and aerial survey.

Source: Textron Aviation                 

                              Pilatus Delivers 2,000th PC-12 TurboProp

Pilatus celebrated with the delivery of the 2,000th aircraft in its PC-12 family.  During a ceremony at the company’s headquarters in Stans, Switzerland, the turboprop single was handed over to long-time U.S. PC-12 operator PlaneSense.  The New HamShire-based fractional ownership provider has operated an all-pilates fleet since the delivery of its first PC-12 in 1995 and now has a fleet of 43 PC-12s and 11 PC-24 light jets.

“ This unique aircraft constitutes the backbone your operation and has been an important part of the success of the PlaneSense program,” said PlaneSense president and CEO George Antioniadis.

“Our clients have enjoyed the aircraft’s versatility, reliability, comfort, and efficiency for 28 years.  Our partnership with Pilatus has been incredibly valuable and we look forward to expanding it further in the years to come.”

Since its introduction in 1994, the aircraft has been continuously upgraded.

The latest version, the PC-12NGX, was launched in 2019.  Pilatus delivered 80 of the type last year-end the global PC-12 fleet has amassed more than 10 million flight hours.

Source: Pilatus, Picture Pilatus


                                    OTHER AVIATION NEWS

     Oman Air Equips Training Center with 737 Max Simulator

Middle Eastern carrier Oman Air has equipped its training center with a Boeing 737 Max 8 simulator.  The airline says the system has been acquired from specialist CAE, and installed in the flight-training center at Muscat.  Oman Air has 13 Max 8s in its fleet of 45 aircraft.

“The MAX 8 is the mainstay of our fleet, and the new simulator will enable us to optimize our operational efficiency and ensure significant cost sayings,” says chief operating officer, Capt. Nasser Al Salmi.

Oman Air has been pursuing an ‘ Omanisation’ program to attract nationals of the sultanate to the carrier and says this has reached a level of 81% for its pilots.

Source: Oman Air, Picture Oman Air

                      WestJet Completes Acquisition of Sunwing Airlines

WestJet Group has acquired competing carrier Sunwing Airlines, completing a deal that had raised competitive concerns but that WestJet insists will benefit travelers.  Calgary-based WestJet Group, owner of low-cost airline WestJet, disclosed on May 1 that it closed the purchase, roughly one year after announcing its intention to acquire Sunwing, in March 2022.  The deal also brings Sunwing’s vacation business into WestJet portfolio.

The Acquisition “ combines the two Canadian aviation and Leisure travel success stories and will bring greater choice, competitive airfares and increase direct access to sun destinations to Canadian traveler”, WestJet says. 

“It positions Sunwing to continue its growth across Canada and permits the newly merged company to protect jobs.”  WestJet and Sunwing will initally operate separately, while “maintaining a sharp focus on providing an exceptional guest experience and ensuring safe operations”, WestJet says.  The deal gives WestJet a stronger presence in eastern Canada.  WestJet’s flight network is heavily weighted toward flights of western Canada.  

Founded in 1996, WestJet has long been Canada’s second-largest airline by various measures, behind Air Canada.It has 14,000 employees and 175 aircraft, including seven 787-9s and 105 737s operated by main subsidiary WestJet, 16 737s in the fleet of ultra-low-cost subsidiary Swoop and 47 De Havilland Canada Dash 8-400 turboprops operated by regional-airline subsidiary Encore.  Sunwing operates 32 737s, including 737 Max 8s, and has another three in storage, according to Cirium data.

Source: WestJet, WestJet

    Qatar Airways Aims to Receive All 737 Max 8s End-July

Qatar Airways has introduced a second Boeing 737 Max 8, and will bring in another seven of the type by the end of July.  The Middle Eastern carrier took delivery of its first in mid-April after taking advantage of an opportunity to introduce a batch of the twinsets to its fleet.  Qatar Airways says it has since installed streaming in-flight entertainment and undertaken pilot-training programs with the jet.

“Utilization of the Max 8s will add capacity to help drive future growth, especially in short-haul markets,” says the carrier.  It says the type, used on Doha-Kuwait route, will be deployed on other sectors primarily operating to Gulf Co-operation Council states.  “These efficient and modern aircraft are a welcome addition to the narrowbody fleet to support our sustainable expansion plans,” it adds.

Qatar Airways has 25 of the larger 737 Max 10 on order, and the airline says the jets have a number of operational synergies notably pilot training and ground-handling with the Max 8s.  The airline says the Max 10s will have alternative amenities including a different in-flight entertainment system.

Source: Qatar Airways, FlightGlobal, Picture Qatar Airways

 Air New Zealand Make Multi-Billion Investments In New Jets

Air New Zealand is set to make significant investments in its fleet, capacity and marketing over the next five years as the airline closes in on pre-pandemic recovery.  Airline chief Greg Foran says the airline will invest about $2.2 billion dollars in new aircraft and cabin retrofits.  The new jets comprise 8 Boeing 787s comprising a mix of -9s and -10s, as well as five Airbus A320neos, all of which are in its existing orderbook.

Foran also discloses that Air New Zealand is in final negotiations to lease a 777-300ER to beef up capacity, bringing its fleet of 777s to eight examples.  The investment also covers ongoing work to update its cabin products, which was first announced in June 2022.  The new products, which cover all cabin classes and includes a sleep-pod concept in economy class, are set to debut in 2024 on its 787s.

Foran, who was speaking at tourism business event in Christchurch, says the airline’s international capacity is making good recovery and is now around 91% pre- pandemic levels.

On the domestic network, the airline has fully recovered to pre-pandemic capacity, and is looking to add more seats.

Source: Air New Zealand      

                                                LATEST NEWS

  • Luxair Luxembourg’s flag-carrier, is to purchase another pair of Boeing 737 Max 8s, taking its overall commitment to four of the type.

  • Lessor BOC Aviation has agreed to purchase 7 AirBus A320neo-family jets, with deliveries commencing this year.

  • Philippine Airlines has committed to 9 A350-1000s that it will use on ultra-long-haul flights to North America and Europe.
  • Air Algérie has reached an agreement with Boeing to acquire eight 737 Max 9 aircraft powered by CFM International Leap-1B engines.
  • Ryanair reaches a deal with Boeing for 737 Max 10, taking up to 300 Max 10s with deliveries et to begin in 2027.  About half of these will replace older 737s in its fleet, while the rest will be used for expansion.

  • Lessor BOC Aviation has agreed to purchase seven more A320-family jets with deliveries commencing this year.
  • Irish-Based Lessor Avolon is intending to order 40 Boeing 737 Max jets, for delivery over the course of 2027-30.

  • China Airlines will exercise options to purchase 8 more Boeing 787-9 aircraft, adding to an existing order for 16 examples first announced in August 2022 and firmed up a month later.

  • Royal Jordanian Airlines has firmed-up orders for eight Embraer E2-family jets following a memorandum of understanding signed with Embraer in October last year.

Sources: Ryanair, Lessor BOC Aviation, China Airline, Lessor Avolon, Air Algerie, Luxair.

    Air Cargo

                  Airbus A350 Freighter Service Date Slips to 2026

Airbus has shifted the entry into service for the A350 freighter into 2026, but is more broadly maintaining its industrial targets for other programs.  Airbus, which has disclosed first-quarter results, says the industrial planning for the freighter is being “slightly adjusted” as its initial milestones are reached.

Chief executive Guillaume Faury, speaking during the results briefing, said the slip was a “few months” from the previous end-2025 timeframe.  But he insists it does not amount to a “re-baselining” of the schedule, and states that the shift relates to overall program execution.   Airbus recently produced the first components for the freighter at its Airbus Atlantic plant in Nantes.

Source: Airbus, Picture Airbus

                     Mammoth 777 Conversions Feature Personnel Area

US aerospace firm Mammoth Freighters has detailed plans for a personnel area behind the cockpit of its converted Boeing 777 cargo aircraft.  The company, which is aiming to offer conversion of 777-200LR and-300ER is seeking US FAA approval for the four-person zone.  This will bring maximum occupancy to eight, because Mammoth is designing the aircraft to accommodate two observers in the cockpit as well as the two pilots.

Its conversion involves installing a main-deck Class E cargo compartment and large freight door in the left side of the aft fuselage.  Rigid 9G barriers will be fitted to protect the occupied areas from fire or cargo shift.  The area will have four business-class seats, a new galley and a two person crew rest.

It also features the retained forward left-hand lavatory, the left-and right-hand passenger exit doors-along with their emergency slides and miscellaneous storage compartments.  All the other passenger doors will be de-activated as part of the conversion.

Mammoth is requesting, in its regulatory filling, that up to three personnel be permitted to enter the cargo compartment during the flight to attend to the freight.

Source : Mammoth Freighters.



Researched and Compiled by :

Ed Kaplanian    Commercial Aviation Advisor 

Contact – ekaplanian@yahoo.com

Editor:   Lee Kaplanian 

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