The Kaplanian Report – January 2019

On the Boeing Front

                        GE Begins Second Round of GE9X Flight Testing                                  

GE Aviation’s GE9X turbofan returned to the skies on December 10, kicking off a second round of airborne testing during which the engine maker will evaluate the power plant’s software and performance in hot-and-high conditions.

The latest round of testing will involve roughly 18 flight of GE’s flying Boeing 747-400 testbed, which will carry the massive GE9X turbofan under its wing, GE says.

The 105,000 lb thrust (467kN) GE9X will power Boeing’s 777-9s and 777-8s.

GE9X flight tests will stretch into the first quarter of this year, bringing GE closer to achieving its goal of receiving certification of the engine by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), according to the Ohio-based engine maker.

“During the second round of testing, GE will continue software development testing that began in the first round, perform hot-and-high starts and fill in remaining gaps from the first round of testing,” says GE.  “Tests that remain include blade out, hailstone, bird ingestion and block or insurance testing,” GE Says.

The GE9X-105B variant of the engine will power the 777-9, which Boeing expects will achieve first flight this year and enter service in 2020.

GE aviation acquired its 747-400 flying testbed from Japan Airlines, then modified and strengthened the aircraft’s wing and strut to accommodate test engines, it says.

Source : GE Aviation/Picture GE Aviation

                      

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT

          Airbus Strategy Review Augurs Clean Break Under New CEO

Airbus has launched a strategic review to outline changes under the incoming chief executive, Guillaume Faury, as it faces industrial challenges and prepares to overdue modernization, industry sources said.

The “Airbus Next Chapter” review involves a team of planners working outside the normal strategy organization in pursuit of a break from years of industrial problems, management feuds and ongoing bribery scandal.

It is being led by investor relations chief Julie Kitcher, in what one insider described as a signal to financial markets that profits will be embedded in strategy’s as the one state sponsored European project marks its 50th anniversary.

Planemaking boss Faury, who becomes CEO when Tom Enders retires in April, ”wants to go fast and introduce a new state of mind: he wants to turn the page on the past”, a person familiar with the company said.

Founded in 1969, Airbus has risen to compete on par with Boeing and is one of Europe’s leading exporters. The review may address how Airbus can meet demand by sharply ramping up production of its jets like its A320. One previous taboo that may come for discussion is a fragmented production system securing jobs in The UK, France, Germany and Spain.

The A320 is the lifeblood of Europe’s largest aerospace group, described by operations chief Tom Williams, who retired in late 2018, as the “golden goose.”

Executives are warning Airbus must not find itself lacking in proven technology for the A320’s successor after 2030, as it had been in wide-bodies when Boeing launched the 787.

For now, Airbus is winning a bigger slice of the market on the A320 but some analysts say it has fallen behind Boeing in manufacturing techniques-a gap that could grow if Boeing launches a mid-market jet with a new factory system.

Source : Tim Hepher, Reuters

     

REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

      Boeing Business Jets Launches Longest-Range Jet with BBJ 777X

Boeing Business Jets is confident that its newly launched BBJ 777X will deliver significant sales in the Middle East, justifying the unveiling of the VVIP airliner at the Middle East Business Aviation Association(MEBAA).

“Our most exclusive customers want to travel with best space and comfort, and fly directly to their destination,” says Greg Laxton, head of Boeing Business Jets.  The BBJ 777x will be able to do this like no other airplane before it, redefining ultra-long-range VIP travel.”

He says the company has been touting the aircraft to customers ahead of its formal launch at MEBBA and has received positive feedback.

“The Middle East traditionally accounts for over 52% of our wide body BBJ sales and there is no reason why the breakdown won’t apply on the 777X, ”Laxton adds.

Like the commercial aircraft on which it is based, the BBJ 777X will be available in -8 and -9 variants and becomes the fourth current production wide body in the BBJ range, joining the 787-8/9,747-8 and 777-200 LR/300ER.

BBJ also announced a new order at MEBAA for a BBJ Max, bringing to 21 the total orders for the business jet version of the re-engined narrow body family: 14 Max 8s, three Max 9s and four Max 7s.

Source : Flightglobal/Boeing Business Jets

                                                                       

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

           Boeing Delivers the 787th 787-9 to AerCap and China Southern

On December 13, 2018, Boeing delivered the 787th 787 Dreamliner to come off the production line, marking a special milestone for the super-efficient airplane family and the fastest-selling twin-aisle jet in history.

Since its first delivery in September, 2011, the 787 family has flown nearly 300 million passengers on more than 1.5 million flights around the world, including more than 210 new nonstop routes made possible by the airplane’s superior fuel efficiency and range.

The airplane was delivered to AerCap, the world’s largest lessor and 787 customer. Sporting a special logo commemorating the production milestone, the airplane will be leased and operated by China Southern, which continues to expand its long-haul fleet of 787 Dreamliners, including 10 787-8s and eight 787-9s.

China Southern Airlines first ordered 10 787-8 Dreamliners in 2005 and further increased its capability on long-haul routes when they placed an order for 787-9s in 2016.

Source : World Airline News/Boeing/Boeing Picture

                    Boeing Delivers First China-Completed 737 Max

On December 15, 2018 Boeing marked a key milestone in its relationship with China’s aviation industry, delivering the first aircraft from its 737 completion and delivery center in Zhoushan.

The hand-over, undertaken in conjunction with joint-venture partner Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC), involved a 737 Max 8 for Air China, registration B-1178. The aircraft was built on Boeing’s 737 assembly line in Renton, Washington, but completion was undertaken at the Chinese facility in Zhoushan.

The milestone comes 20 months after construction began at the 100-acre site, says Boeing, which is its first such facility outside the USA. It was built in partnership with the Zhejiang Provincial and Zhoushan Municipal Governments and will become fully operational in phases as capacity increases, adds Boeing.

“This moment signifies our growing partnership with China that stretches back over nearly half a century,” says Kevin McAllister, president and chief executive of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

Source : Flightglobal/Boeing/Boeing Picture

                         Boeing 767 Era Ends at British Airways                                                         

On November 25th, 2018 British Airways flew its final Boeing 767 passenger flight revenue flight as it retires the type after almost three decades of service.

BA was the last customer for the Rolls-Royce RB211-powered version of Boeing’s wide body twin. This proved a relatively unpopular option, with just 31 delivered-28 to British Airways(BA) and three to China’s Yunnan Airlines.

The 767 was selected by BA in 1987 over Airbus’s pitch-A300-600R. BA said at the time of selection that, before deciding on the Boeing 767, it had “conducted a most careful study of the closely comparable Airbus A300”,but the final decision was based upon the 767’s commonalities with the 757 ( common type rating),and the availability of the RB211.

The first 767-300ER arrived in February 1990, and the twinge proved very agile throughout its 28 years, operating across its short-haul network as well as further afield to destinations in North America, the Caribbean, and Africa and the Middle East.

The last commercial flight took place on aircraft registration G-BZHA between Larnaca, Cyprus and London Heathrow. It first flew in 1998 and flew an estimated 23 million miles. It has visited Larnaca 900 times in its life, but its most popular route is actually to Athens, where it completed 1275 round trips. According to British Airways, its estimated that this specific aircraft has carried around 4 million customers across nearly 23,000 flights.

Source : British Airways/Photo Boeing

                 

LATEST NEWS

  • Air Kiribati Embraer signed a contract with the Government of Kiribati in partnership with their national airline, Air Kiribati, for two firm orders for the E190-E2 E-Jets and two purchase rights for the same model.                                                                                            
  • Bombardier has delivered the third and final Challenger 650 to Swiss rescue and medical services provider Rega. From a 2015 order for the large-cabin business jet.         
  • Azul firmed up an order for 21 Embraer E-195-E2s previously announced at the Farnborough air show in July 2018.                                                                                           
  • Flydeal Boeing and Flydeal announced on December the Middle East carrier is growing its fleet with 737 MAX aircraft, the airline committed to ordering 30 aircraft with options for 20 more.
  • Green Africa Airways Nigerian start-up carrier Green Africa Airways has committed to acquiring up to 100 Boeing 737 MAX 8 jets                                                                                                                                                                  
  • Easter Jet has become the first South Korean carrier to take delivery of a Boeing 737 Max 8. It is one of two that the leisure carrier is taking through VEB-Leasing, which will join its fleet of 19 737-800s.
  • Nordic Aviation Capital will lease seven new Embraer E190s to Air France regional subsidiary HOP!
  • Airbus delivered 89 aircraft (two A220s; 71 A320s; three A330s; 11 A350s; two A380s) in November 2018 vs 74 in November 2017.
  • Air Europa will begin phasing out its Embraer E195 aircraft in 2021 as part of a strategy to transition to an all-Boeing fleet in 2023.
  • Subaru Aerospace Company has moved up the value chain with its center wing-box work for the Boeing 777X, as it seeks to further improve efficiency and manage costs.
  • Middle East Airlines of Lebanon announced has announced plans to purchase four Airbus A330-900neos, with options on a further two.                                                                  

AIR CARGO

              Ethiopian Airlines Cargo Celebrates Liege Anniversary                                  

Ethiopian Airlines Cargo and Logistics Services has celebrated 10 years of cooperation with Belgian airfreight hub Liege. The anniversary was celebrated at the recent 2nd Africa Aviation summit, which was held in Nairobi, Kenya in late November 2018 at the Liege Airport.

The next summit, in 2020, is to be held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and will be hosted by Ethiopian Airlines Cargo and Logistic Services and Liege Airport.

Fitsum Abady, general manager Ethiopian Airlines Cargo and Logistics Services, said in Nairobi that the carrier’s choice of Liege in 2008 as its European hub has proved to be a wise choice.  The freight carrier has grown rapidly over the last decade: its freighter fleet has evolved from two leased MD11s to an inventory of eight brand-new Boeing 777 freighters—with more to come.

Ethiopian Cargo played a role in the creation of Liege Airport Cargo North as a gateway for flowers and other perishables, and is seen as an important partner for the future by Belgian gateway.

Source : aircargonews/Ethiopian Photo                                                                                                 

                        White-glove Service for Red-Carpet Event                                                

The Standard limousine wasn’t good enough to chauffeur government officials and corporate executives for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in November of last year in Papua New Guinea.

Kuwait-based Agility Logistics chartered two Boeing 747-8 freighters operated by Air Bridge Cargo, to fly 40 Maserati Quattroportes from Milan, Italy, about 8,500 miles to the event.

The Quattroportes were jacketed in protective covers as part of the white-glove treatment.

Source : Automotive News/Picture Air Bridge Cargo

 

Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul News

             Cold-Soak Software Fix Expanded to Leap-1B Engines                                               

European And US regulators have expanded a software-upgrade mandate to CFM International Leap-1B engines that ensures Boeing 737 Max-powered aircraft will not experience engine-fan-speed issues caused by extremely cold weather.

The European Aviation Safety Agency and the U.S. FAA mandates, issued

November 27 and December 11, 2018 respectively, mirror earlier requirements that covered Leap-1A engines that power A320neos. The latest directives require 737 Max-family operatives to upgrade full authority digital engine control (FADEC) and prognostic health monitoring (PHM) software within 60 days of their respective effective dates. The Boeing fleet upgrades were recommended in a CFM service bulletin issued October 24, 2018.

The Issue stems from engines cold-soaking after sitting at least six hours in temperatures well below freezing. Frontier Airlines reported six incidents when Airbus A320neo-family aircraft departing on their first flights of the day were forced to return to their gates when engines would not reach the required takeoff fan speed. In each case, water and ice was discovered in engine pressure-sensor lines affecting the sensor’s accuracy.

“While we have not received any reports of aborted takeoffs with the CFM Leap-1B model engine, the unsafe condition is likely to exist because of similarities in design and instances of ice and moisture found in the pressure sense subsystem lines,” FAA said.

Source : pro-network.com

 

Sources on Latest News: Airbus,World Airline News, Flightglobal ,Air Europa, Middle East Airlines & Bombardier.                

  • Sources of Header Pictures : Boeing Archives, Airbus & Embraer

 

 

 

Researched and Compiled by :

Ed Kaplanian    Commercial Aviation Advisor 

Contact – ekaplanian@msn.com

Editor:   Lee Kaplanian

 

Volume 5 Issue 10 October 2018

ON THE BOEING FRONT

             Boeing Making Steady Progress with 777X (Part 2)

In Everett, Boeing has begun construction of the second autoclave, scheduled to move into CWC (composite wing Center) later this year.

Now housing a single autoclave, the CWC will eventually need to reach three full rate. For spar production, Boeing has erected two fabrication cells, allowing it to build a front and rear spar simultaneously. While the CWC also makes composite panels, skins, and stringers—86 of which go into each wing—the wing’s aluminum ribs are made in other Boeing facilities.

In the meantime, at Boeing’s Seattle-area test facility, the company has completed more than 20 labs and has entered the lab-testing phase. One of the labs, called the integrated test vehicle(ITV), covers 12,000 sq ft and took about three years to complete.  It tests all of the hydraulics and actuators, as well as folding wing operation, flaps, landing gear and various other items. Also in the test building sits what Boeing calls (Airplane), which took 33 months to complete. It began testing avionics and systems integration in March. Covering 11,000 square feet, it includes all avionics boxes,55 bays of equipment and 3,700 instrumented cables.

Featuring 105,000-pound-thrust GE9x turbofans and structural improvements to the fuselage that will allow for a 6,000-foot cabin altitude, the airplane remain positioned to meet Boeing’s 2020 entry-into-service target, according to Boeing.

For the fuselage, after much deliberation, Boeing chose to retain the aluminum design, while still incorporating not only a lower cabin altitude but also higher humidity levels and larger windows. Boeing’s familiarity with the legacy 777 allowed it to create an environment comparable to that passengers enjoy in the all-composite 787. In the opinion of this writer it is going to be another awesome Boeing product.

Source : Boeing/Boeing Picture

 

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT

                                   Airbus Rolls Out First ACJ320neo

The first Airbus Corporate Jets ACJ320neo rolled off the production line in Hamburg, Germany, the company announced on August 16. Registered as D-AVVL, the airplane has been fitted with CFM International Leap-1A engines and painted in Airbus Corporate Jets’ house colors.

Following delivery to UK-based Acropolis Aviation in the fourth quarter, the aircraft will enter outfitting at AMAC in Basel, Switzerland, where an Alberto Pinto-designed cabin will be installed. It will be repainted in the customer’s colors.

Airbus ACJ320neo family aircraft feature new-generation engines and Sharklets, reducing fuel burn by about 15 percent and increasing range.

According to Airbus, the ACJ320neo can fly 25 passengers 6,000nm, 11,100 km, enabling routes such as London to Beijing or Cape Town and Moscow to Los Angeles, while the ACJ319neo can fly eight passengers 6,700nm/12,500 km.

ACJ320 family variants differ from their airliner counterparts by including a lower cabin altitude, build-in airstrips, and cargo hold that is reinforced to carry additional center fuel tanks. There are currently nine firm orders for the ACJ320neo family—three ACJ319neo and six ACJ320neo—according to Airbus.

Source : Airbus/Airbus Picture          

       

REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

                              Boeing Sells BBJ Max 7 to Seasons Trading

Boeing Business Jets has sold a BBJ Max 7 to Singapore company Seasons Trading.

Although Seacons Trading chief executive Duty Purwagandhi says the re-engined narrow body was selected “because it offers more room and more range” than the company’s current line-up, it is unclear if it will replace the current BBJ or Gulfstream G550 it operates.

“The BBJ Max 7 has features and capability that allow us to meet our very long-distance and demanding international flights with the best passenger comfort in its class,” adds Purwagandhi.

Green deliveries of the 7,000nm(12,950km)-range, CFM international Leap 1B-powered BBJ Max 7 are scheduled to begin in 2022, with Asian operator Orient Global Aviation the launch customer for the type.

Boeing says it has secured 20 orders for the BBJ Max family. The line-up includes the -8 and -9 variants—the re-engined variants of the BBJ2 and BBJ3, which are earmarked for green delivery in 2018 and 2020.

Boeing set up its dedicated division for business jets in 1996 and since then has taken 259 orders and delivered 233 aircraft.

Source : Boeing Business Jets

 

             Bombardier: Mission Accomplished for Global 7500 FTV1

As it nears certification for its new 7,700-nm flagship business jet, Bombardier Business Aircraft has retired the first 7500 flight-test vehicle—FTV1, dubbed “The Performer” — from flight-test duties, the Canadian aircraft manufacturer announced this week.  ”On November 4, 2016, the inaugural flight test vehicle took to the skies for the first time,” it said. On September 7, 2018 it has officially completed all of its flight testing and is going into retirement. Mission accomplished.

However, Bombardier said the aircraft itself is far from being retired. Instead, FTV1 has recently been painted at the company’s Global Completion Center, serving as a dress rehearsal for the paint shop, which was recently expanded to accommodate the larger model. The airplane will also be used as a demonstrator and appear at local company events ahead of the first production Global 7500’s expected service entry in the fourth quarter. In addition, Bombardier’s customer experience team is using FTV1 to validate all instruction manuals and procedural guidelines.

Meanwhile, the company said the rest of its Global 7500 flight-test fleet—FTV2 through FTV5—is wrapping up the final testing. To date test aircraft have accumulated more than 2,700 flight hours altogether.

Source : ainonline/Picture Bombardier

                                                                     

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

                       Narrowbodies Will Grow Their Share: Udvar-Hazy

Single-aisle aircraft will increase their dominance of global airline fleet as it grows over the next decade,AirLease executive chairman Steven Udvar-Hazy expects.

Speaking at an Aviation Club luncheon in London on September 13th, Udvar-Hazy said narrow bodies had upped their share from 70% to 75% of in-service commercial aircraft within a few years.” That trend will continue,” he predicts.

He singles out Airbus’s longest-range narrow body, the A321LR, as a crucial aircraft in the medium market, suggesting that “we will see a lot more of them on transatlantic routes” because the variant offers “ close to the Boeing 757 capabilities, but uses 30 to 35% less fuel”.

However, he says “the multimillion dollar question” is how Boeing responds with its New Mid-Market Airplane concept. Udvar-Hazy expects the airframe to make a final decision on The “797” by next summer.

He remains skeptical about the prospects of the Airbus A380.”It is ideal for about 50 to 60 city pairs, but its versatility is limited because of seasonal markets and airport infrastructure that makes it complex aircraft to support,”he says.Pointing to the fact that Emirates dominates the installed fleet and orderbook for the double-deck wide body, he adds “How do you estimate residuals when so much of the fleet sin the hands of one airline?”

Source : Flightglobal

         Ethiopian Defers A220 Decision Following Airbus Acquisition

Ethiopian Airlines has suspended its planned order for at least 20 examples of the former Bombardier C Series following Airbus’s acquisition and renaming of the program now known as the A220.The airline engaged in an evaluation of the former Bombardier program for more than two years. However, now that the European airframes controls the program’s marketing, Ethiopian has decided to wait and gain a better understanding of Airbus’s plans.

But just as Ethiopian concluded its evaluation, Airbus acquired the majority of the program and renamed the aircraft the A220. “The new owner has a new marketing strategy,” said CEO GebreMariam.“Thus we decided to give it time and see how the process is going to evolve.”

Now the airline is studying whether or not the Boeing 737Max aircraft order could eventually fit into the regional route network on which it intended the C Series to operate.

“We are closely studying the market if it can continue to grow to the level of the Boeing 737 Max, which is a 160-seater,” said GebreMariam, referring to the Max 8.”with the fast growth that we see in the African continent this market may grow to that level and we may not need to add additional complexity with a new model aircraft and the additional need for training of pilots and technicians.”

Source : ainonline/picture Ethiopian

           Virgin Australia Signs On As Latest Boeing Max 10 Customer

Boeing’s firm order total for the largest of its 737 Max line rose to 417 on Wednesday August 29, as Virgin Australia said it would convert delivery positions reserved for 10 of 40 Max 8s on order to Max 10 positions. Australia’s second largest airline expects to take delivery of its first Max 10 in 2022, some three years after it takes the continent’s first Max 8 in November 2019.

Brisbane-based Virgin Australia Group operates more than 130 aircraft, including more than 80 Boeing 737NGs.The addition of the Max jets forms part of a fleet modernization program expected to further boost prospects for a recovering domestic network.

The Max 10 incorporates a pair of fuselage plugs to extend the max 9’s length by 66 inches. Other changes include a levered main landing gear, minor changes to accommodate the 777-style landing gear and four-inch-wider mid-exit door to allow for extra 12 passengers, bringing maximum capacity to 230 passengers.

Source : Ed’s Research/Boeing/Virgin Australia Picture

     

 LATEST BRIEFINGS

  • Ural Airlines of Russia is to diverge from its all-Airbus fleet having reached an agreement to lease 14 Boeing 737 Max jets.                                                                                 
  • American Airlines CR Smith Museum reopened to the public on Labor Day following the successful completion of a redesign of its permanent exhibitions.
  • Gulf Air has received its first Airbus A320neo, the airline will eventually operate  12 examples.
  • First Airbus A380 has been dismantled and will be sold as spare parts as new lessee or buyer could not be found after a 10-year lease to Singapore Airlines.
  • Luxair Luxembourg’s national carrier plans to acquire two Boeing 737-700s in 2019 to expand its route structure.
  • Atlas Air has concluded a deal to acquire a Boeing 747-400 freighter from Lease Corporation International, increasing its fleet almost 40 examples.
  • Corendon Airlines will introduce three more Boeing 737 Max from the beginning of next year.
  • Ukraine International Airline continues its expansion program by acquiring seven new aircraft this year including a former Asiana Airlines Boeing 777-200ER.
  • Biman Bangladesh Airlines put its first Boeing 787-8 into service on September 1.                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Air Peace announces an order for 10 737 Max aircraft from Boeing to expand its regional network.                                                                                                                             
  • Brazil’s GOL unveiled its new Boeing 737 Max 8 at an event in Sao Paulo after taking delivery from Boeing.                                                                                                                       

 

 

AIR CARGO

                                The BMW Vision iNEXT World Flight

The BMW’s autonomous iNEXT electric crossover is no ordinary vehicle. And to launch it, BMW is taking to the skies. In a round-the-world sprint spanning Sept.9-11, BMW flew the iNEXT in a Boeing 777 Freighter to press events in Munich, New York, San Francisco and Beijing, before returning to Frankfurt.

Four destinations on three continents in five days. The BMW Group teamed up with the Lufthansa Cargo  to present the BMW iNEXT World Flight as part of an event unparalleled in its execution.

Lufthansa Cargo and the BMW Group team have worked together closely to turn this extraordinary vehicle and technology presentation from idea into reality.

Preparation for the presentation event involved laying more than 7.5 km of wiring, while 78,000 LEDs in 165 Video LED modules and ten 13,000 ANSI lumen projectors will lit up a show inside the Boeing aircraft and that appealed to all the senses.

More than 120 specialists in exhibition stand constructions as well as experts from Lufthansa Cargo and the BMW Group have played their part in making the project happen.

Around 30 tons of material were used to construct a suitable platform on which to showcase the BMW Vision iNEXT.

Timings were tight, given the need to turn the entire set-up inside the 777F from presentation mode to flight mode and back quickly and securely.

The first guests were expected to arrive eight hours after the plane lands. And just four hours after the final presentation has been wrapped up at one venue, the 777 took off again for the next destination on its itinerary.

Source : Lufthansa Cargo/Pictures Lufthansa/BMW Automotive News

 

Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul News

  MRO’s Technological Shift

Aircraft maintenance is rooted in touch labor and is likely to remain so for many years. New tools and materials sometimes make life easier for engineers, but human input still is invariably required.

Threatening to shake things up, however, are new technologies such as robotics and artificial intelligence.

For example, Lufthansa Technik has developed an automated inspection and repair boot for combusted cracks, while several airlines have trialed drones for automated aircraft exterior inspections.

With the inspection drones an engineer is still needed to review the results, but fault recognition technology may soon remove the need for human eyes.

Most composite repairs are still done by hand, but automated processes will be an integral part of the aftermarket going forward—in part because of the imposition of stricter standards to inspection and repair procedures, which add to repair time if done by hand.

Many of these technologies do not threaten to replace human workers. Instead, they offer productivity gains, quicker turnarounds and more accurate inspections.

Looking ahead, a more interesting question is whether hardware or software improvements will offer the biggest gains for maintenance.

Source : pro-network/Picture Lufthansa Technik

 

LATEST MRO NEWS

  • Ameco launched Airbus A350-900 line maintenance services for air China.
  • IAI is considering resuming its Boeing 747-400 passenger-to-freighter conversion program.
  • KLM UK Engineering has an Alliance Airlines contract for Fokker 70/100 heavy maintenance.
  • MTU Maintenance has a 3-year Jazeera Airways contract for CFM56-5B maintenance/repair.

   

 

       Researched and Compiled by :

       Ed Kaplanian    Commercial Aviation Advisor

       Contact – ekaplanian@msn.com

        Editor:   Lee Kaplanian 

Volume 5 Issue 6

On The Boeing Front

                              Boeing Celebrates Flyaway of First BBJ Max

On April 16, Boeing celebrated the flyaway of the first BBJ MAX airplane, from the air-framer’s  facility in Seattle on the first stage of its journey to becoming a fully outfitted BBJ Max 8.

The plane was flown to Delaware Coastal airport. Local company Aloft AeroArchitects will now install Its PATS auxiliary fuel tank, which will boost the aircraft’s range to 6,640nm (12,230km)—some 3,000nm more than the standard Max 8, which entered service in 2017, and 800 more than the BBJ2 which it replaces.

The green BBJ Max 8 is scheduled to arrive for outfitting in the fourth quarter at Comlux Completions in Indianapolis. The finished aircraft will be handed over to its undisclosed customer in the second half of 2019.

“We are excited to see the first BBJ Max come to life and fly through the development milestone,” says Boeing Business Jets president Greg Laxton. ”In the past few weeks, the airplane has achieved factory rollout, first flight, multiple certifications, and now flyaway,” he adds.

The BBJ Max 8 was launched in 2014 as the first member of the re-engined BBJ family. This will be followed by the BBJ Max 7 and BBJ Max 9.

Source : BBJ/Picture Boeing

                      

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT

                          First A350-900ULR Starts Flight-Test Campaign

Airbus has conducted the maiden flight of its A350-900ULR, the heavier and longer-range variant of the twinge tailored to operate specialized long-haul routes. The initial aircraft, MSN216, departed the air-framer’s Toulouse headquarters on April 23rd.

It features three primary modifications, of which two will be applied to all new-build A350-900s.

Airbus has hiked the maximum take-off weight to 280t, and increase on the previous figure of 275t.It has also incorporated a series of aerodynamic changes which, it says, will contribute to a 1% fuel-burn saving.

These include a further slight twist of the wings taller winglet, trailing-edge extension and clean-up of the upper wing fairing. All these adaptations will become standard on the -900.

The ultra-long range-900ULR will have dedicated changes, primarily a higher fuel capacity. The center wing tank will not be increased in size but re plumbing of interior installations will provide access to another 24,000 liters ( 6,340 ) gallons of existing volume.

Airbus puts the reference range of the -900ULR at 9,700 nm compared with the standard 8,100nm of the basic -900. Singapore Airlines has ordered seven-900ULRs and is set to take delivery of the first -900ULR this year, although Airbus declines to narrow the handover window beyond a second-half timeframe.

The first A350-900 ULR) for Singapore Airlines has been revealed in the Airline’s livery following completion of painting in Toulouse.

The aircraft is now set to move to the next stages of production, including the installation of engines and cabin furnishing, before starting ground and flight tests.

The Aircraft is scheduled for delivery to Singapore Airlines after all the testing is completed.

Source : Airbus/Flightglobal/Picture Airbus

                    

REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

                              Pilatus Aircraft Has Delivered  its Second                                PC24 To Its US Dealer

Pilatus Aircraft delivered its second PC24 to its US dealer and maintenance provider Western Aircraft. The Handover  comes as the first production example enters service with fractional ownership company Plane Sense.

Pilatus plans to deliver 23 of the super tight business jets in 2018, from an order backlog of 84.

Western Aircraft says it has seen strong demand for the PC-24, ”With more than a dozen offers to buy the first aircraft”. Despite the demand Western plans the second aircraft to its inventory, where it will be used for ad hoc charter and for the coming year as a Company demonstrator.

PlaneSense, one of Pilates’s largest customers, has an order for six PC-24s, but is keen to acquire additional aircraft to bolster its fleet of 36 PC-12s.

Source : Pilatus                                                                                                                                          

                          American Orders 15 E175s and 15 CRJ900s

American Airlines has ordered 15 Bombardier CRJ900s and 15 Embraer E175 regional jets, deals with a combined list price value of roughly $1.4 billion.  Deliveries of the CRJ900s with 76 seats to American Subsidiary PSA Airlines will begin in the second quarter of 2019 according to Bombardier media release.

The Bombardier commitment, including an additional 15 CRJ900 options, has a value at list prices of $719 million. Bombardier stated that the aircraft will be outfitted with the Company’s new “Atmosphere” cabin, which includes overhead bins that can accommodate large roller bags.

Embraer will deliver the 15 E175s with 76 seats to American Subsidiary Envoy from March 2019 to November 2019, the manufacturer says.

That deal, including options for 15 more E175s, has a value at list prices of $705 million. It follows an order by American for 10E-Jets in October 2017.

Source : American/Bombardier/Embraer

                                                                     

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

                       ANA Unveils the Features of The New Airbus A380s 

All Nippon Airways (ANA) three A380s will be exclusively introduced to the Tokyo-Honolulu service and each cabin is specially designed to meet the passenger’s needs on this route.

Honolulu is loved by many Japanese families, couples, newlyweds and Hawaii is a popular destination for their vacations and honeymoons. With this in mind, ANA aims to make their experience onboard more comfortable by strategically designing the cabin features in order to meet their unique needs while providing them with a once in a lifetime experience.                       In March 2017, ANA announced the special livery motif FLYING HONU. At the time, the design ANA introduced was blue, an homage to the Hawaiian blue sky.

Since then ANA announced two more colors, green and orange. The emerald green is inspired by the crystal clear waters of the Hawaiian ocean and orange is a reference to the beautiful Hawaiian sunset.

In order to make this triad, the FLYING HONUs, more familiar to everyone, ANA has created a character for each aircraft. The blue character is named “Lani” meaning sky, while the emerald green character is named “Kai” meaning ocean, and the orange character is named “Ka La” from the Hawaiian word meaning sunset.

The Cabin interiors have also been strategically designed in order for the passengers to feel the spirit of Hawaii from the moment they board the aircraft.

The walls and lights have been arranged in such a way as to illustrate Hawaii’s enviable blue skies, sunrises, sunsets, night skies and iconic rainbows.

Source : ANA/Worldairlinenews/ANA Pictures                                                                                     

                              Air Italy Displays Livery on 737 Max 8

Air Italy has unveiled the first aircraft featuring its new livery. The first 737 Max 8 has been painted with the scheme, which incorporates the maroon shade prominent in the branding of shareholder Qatar Airways.

Air Italy, formerly Meridiana, had only previously shown the livery as a digital mock up.

In March, the full-service carrier announced that it would be adding five A330-200s and three 737 Max 8’s to its fleet as the summer season commences.

The aircraft are being leased from 49% shareholder Qatar Airways as Air Italy embarks on a rapid short-and long-haul expansion program with Milan Malpensa as its focus.

Flights under the new brand name commenced on March 1st, operated with 737s and Boeing 767s still bearing Meridiana’s livery. Those aircraft will be phased out as the A330s and 737 Max 8’s enter the fleet.

In May 2019, the airline is set to begin receiving Boeing 787s, also leased from Qatar Airways. Air Italy will have a fleet 50 aircraft by 2022.

Source : Flightglobal/Pictures Boeing                                                                                                  

                                  Worries Over Low-Cost Correction

A period of good economic conditions has led to complacency among low-cost carriers that is ripe for a “correction”, in the view of former EasyJet chief executive Ray Webster.

Speaking at the Routes Europe conference in Bilbao on April 23, Webster—who was chief executive of EasyJet between 1996 and 2006—said that outlook for low-cost airlines was “quite worrying” as they were unprepared for future economic shocks.

A period of “very good” economic conditions has been punctuated by the lack of a “serious downturn or runaway fuel prices”, he states.

As a result, carriers have not been put under”pressure” and so have “incrementally added Costs” and lost efficiencies over time, while not experiencing the typical “ Peaks and troughs” of the market.

Webster forecasts that oil producers could raise prices, which would have a “dramatic” impact on airline bottom lines.

Source : Flightglobal     

      

LATEST NEWS

  • Southwest Airlines orders 40 more Boeing 737 MAX jets worth $ 4.68 billion.
  • Bombardier concluded a firm order with Ethiopian Airlines for 10 new Q400 aircraft, plus five options. Based on list prices, the order is valued at $332.
  • Qantas has firmed options on six additional Boeing 787-9s, once delivered, the new jets will take its 787 fleet to 14 aircraft and will be powered by GEnx engines.
  • Uzbekistan Airways finalized an order with Boeing for one Boeing 787-8, valued at $239 million at current list prices.
  • Primera Air European leisure carrier has taken delivery of its first Airbus A321neo is the first of three A321neos that Primera will lease from GECAS.
  • Taiwan’s Far East Air Transport will take the 11 Boeing 737 Max 8s it plans to acquire on operating lease.
  • Drukair of Bhutan has signed a purchase agreement with Airbus for a single A320neo.                                                                                       
  • Lufthansa orders up to 16 Airbus and Boeing aircraft. The orders include 12 A320 family aircraft and four 777s, two 777-300ERs for Swiss and two 777 Freighters for Lufthansa Cargo.                                  
  • British Airways has put its first Airbus A320neo into service with a flight to Lisbon, Portugal.                                                                                
  • Austrian Airlines modified its livery showing much larger Austrian titles on the fuselages well as red bleed from the flag scheme onto the aft fuselage on the first 777-200ER.                                                                                                                                                                                                

AIR CARGO

                            Boeing Delivers the First 737-800 Converted                                    Freighter

On April 19th Boeing announced the delivery of the first 737-800 Boeing Converted Freighter(BCF) to GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) and the freighter will be operated by West Atlantic Group, based in Sweden.

West Atlantic will receive four 737-800 Converted Freighters within the next 11 months, once delivered, the company will operate 23 Boeing 737 freighter aircraft.                                                                                                  

“We are very proud to be the launch customer for the 737-800BCF, and pleased to supply this inaugural aircraft to West Atlantic,” said Richard Greener, GECAS’ Senior Vice President & Manager, Cargo Aircraft Group”.

Boeing’s Current Market Outlook forecasts over the next 20 years, customers will need more than 1,100 standard-body converted freighters.

Boeing has received 45 orders and commitments, from seven customers including: YTO Airlines, based in Hangzhou, China; China Postal Airlines based in Beijing, China: GECAS, based in Ireland; Air Algeria, based in Algiers, Algeria; LAS Cargo, based in Bogota, Columbia; Cargo Air, based in Sophia, Bulgaria; and an unannounced customer.

The 737-800BCF has 12 pallet positions which provide 4,993 cubic feet(141.4 cubic meters) of cargo space on the main deck of the 737-800BCF.this is supplemented by two lower-lobe compartments, combined providing more than 1,540 cubic feet(43.7 cubic meters) of space for revenue-generating cargo.

Source : Boeing/GECAS/Boeing Picture

       

            Brazil-Based Cargo Carrier Modern Logistics & Harley-Davidson                                                

In April of this year Brazil Cargo carrier and motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson entered into a partnership that will help bikers get their motorcycles faster.                                                                                                 

Harley plans to increase output at its Manaus-area factory and use Modern Logistics’ road and airfreight network to transport bikes to 21 Brazilian dealerships.

The new bikes will be flown to Brasilia or Viacopos, and then trucked the rest of the way, reducing average delivery times by four days.

Modern Logistics uses 737-400SFs for the purpose.

Source : Air Cargo World/ModernLogistics Picture

   

  Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul News

                                  Engine OEMs Transition From Old to New

Engine OEM representatives discussed navigating challenges around support and spares when transitioning from old to new engine programs at Aviation Week Network’s Engine Leasing, Trading &Finance event in London.

GE aviation, Pratt& Whitney and Rolls-Royce have expressed overall satisfaction with their new-generation engine programs despite some growing pains related to entry-into-service phase and the transition from older programs to newer ones.

In a panel on new engine programs held at the event on May 2, Paul Finklestein, marketing director at Pratt & Whitney, acknowleged the struggles encountered by Pratt & Whitney on the PW1100G greed turbofan(GTF) program over the past few years.

Currently in operation on around 150 aircraft comprised of Airbusa320neo, Bombardier Series and as of early-May, Embraer E190-E2 aircraft Finklestein said the modifications have smoothed over some of the challenges with the engine program.

Meanwhile, Brian Ovigton, engine services marketing director at GE Aviation, said the OEM experienced a relatively smooth entry-into-service (EIS) of its new engine type—the CFM LEAP family for the 737 MAX and the A320 new narrow bodies and the GEnx, an option for the 787 and the 747-8.Both engines have yet to experience AOG incidents, he said. 

Alastair Knox, head of aircraft transitions at Rolls-Royce, said the British engine makers “very pleased” with the results of the Trent XWB, found on the Airbus A350 aircraft and the Trent 1000 powering the Boeing 787. 

Despite Rolls-Royce’s satisfaction with new engine types, Knox said there are some challenges to consider dependent on the size of the carrier awaiting new models to enter their fleets.

Source : Aviation Week

 

                                  MRO LATEST NEWS

  • Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company Celebrates a Milestone ( HAECO) Xiamen-based business unit has completed its 3000th maintenance check since it started operations in March 1996.To mark the occasion some of the firm’s staff posed in front of the milestone aircraft, Boeing 777-300ER before its redelivery to Cathay Pacific.                                                                                                                
  • Safran has an AirAsiaX contract to maintain Airbus A330 landing gear at Singapore through 2025.
  • GE Aviation Acquired a stake in Avionica as part of an agreement to form joint venture to provide wireless data collection and processing for connected aircraft.
  • All Nippon Airways (ANA) will bring its Boeing 737-500 out of retirement in July as a dedicated maintenance training jet to help assure its maintenance technicians have the best tools for training and to ensure the highest level of quality maintenance. ANA is the first Japanese airline to incorporate a non-operating fully functional jet into its training program.                  

 

 

 

 

Researched and Compiled by :

Ed Kaplanian    Commercial Aviation Advisor 

Contact – ekaplanian@msn.com

Editor:   Lee Kaplanian 

Volume 4 Issue 5 The Kaplanian Report

ON THE BOEING FRONT

      Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 TEN Powers Boeing 787 for the First Time 

The Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 TEN has powered a Boeing Dreamliner flight for the first time.  The flight, which took off and landed at Boeing Field in Seattle, marks the latest phase in the engine’s development program.

The Trent 1000 TEN has also been selected to power the first test flight of the Boeing 787-10 version of the Dreamliner, slated for the end of March, 2017.  This means the Trent 1000 will have powered the first flight of every version of the 787.

Tent 1000 Program Director Gary Moore said: “ Our first Trent 1000 TEN flight on the Dreamliner is another great milestone for our program.  I want to thank everyone at Boeing and Rolls-Royce who have worked hard to make this flight happen.  In addition, our selection to power the first flight of the 787-10 is a great honor, and reflects our commitment to supporting this aircraft as it continues to evolve.”

The Trent 1000 TEN has already powered tests earlier this year on the Rolls-Royce Flying Test Bed aircraft, a Boeing 747, at Tucson, Arizona.

The Trent 1000 TEN (Thrust,Efficiency and New Technology) will power all variants of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner family.  The engine draws on technologies from Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engine and advance engine program, delivering thrust and efficiency improvements.

Source : Rolls-Royce/Rolls-Royce Picture

                      

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT

A350 1000 Wraps Up High- Elevation Tests 

Airbus has wrapped up high-elevation airport testing of the A350-1000 following a 10-day campaign in South America.   Aircraft MSN71 undertook initial tests in Bolivia, operating to Cochabamba and La Paz.

MSN71 carried out several departures and landings at each airport for data-collection, says the airframe, operating at elevations of 7,546 ft – 13,123 ft.

The twin jet also carried out tests at the sea-level Colombian airport of Barranquilla.

“Early test results confirm the good performance and behavior of both the aircraft and its Rolls-Royce Trent XWB-97 engines,” adds Airbus.

“This is a major successful milestone in the aircraft certification flight-test campaign.”

The airframe typically carries out hot-weather tests in the Middle East, using Al Ain in the United Arab Emirates.

Airbus is aiming to deliver the A350-1000 for airline service later this year.  Three of the variant are involved in the certification effort.

Source : Flightglobal/Airbus

             

        

REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

               CSeries Completes London City Airport Validation Flights 

On March 23rd Bombardier completed CSeries validation tests at London City airport and expects to receive certification to operate commercial flights to the facility in as little as six to eight weeks.

“The aircraft flew flawlessly.  There were no issues,” Bombardier’s vice president of the CSeries program, Robert Dewar, told FlightGlobal.

Aircraft operating to London City require special certification largely due to the airport’s steep approach requirement.

Bombardier began London City certification tests for the CSeries months ago at other airports, performing approaches as steep as 7.5 degrees, says Dewar.  That’s steeper than London City’s %.5 degrees approach, he adds.

Following those trials, the Canadian airframe flew its second flight-test vehicle (C-GWYD), a CS100 variant to London Stansted airport on March 21st.

The aircraft landed for the first time at London City on March 22nd, completing four validation and demonstration tests that day and four on March 23rd, the company says.

Next, Authorities will review Bombardier’s test data, Dewar says.  The Company needs approvals from Transport Canada, The European Aviation Safety Agency and Switzerland’s Federal Office of Civil Aviation, according to Dewar.  Pilots must also complete London City specific training.

Bombardier designed the CSeries specifically for operation at London City, Dewar says.  For instance, engineers tailored the aircraft’s wing and flight control laws with London City’s operating requirements in mind, he adds

Source : Flightglobal/Bombardier

                                                                       

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

            “More comfortable” Economy Middle Seats To be Unveiled

Molon Labe has teamed up with BMW’s Designworks and Panasonic Avionics to create an economy-cabin design that would make the middle seat wider and more attractive.

A concept model of the novel design was unveiled at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, April 4-6.

The Stagger Seat, or S2, is a variation of Molon Labe Seating’s Side-Slip Seat, which is aimed at faster boarding and quicker turnarounds for time-sensitive short-haul flights.

The Colorado company is launching this new variation on the concept with quite a different goal – to improve economy class passenger comfort on long-haul flights.

The Stagger Seat takes the ergonomic features of the Side-Slip Seat and translates them into a reclining economy seat”like no other,” the company claims.  In the Side-Slip seat, the middle seat is offset, or staggered, downward and backward relative to the seats either side.  This allows the aisle seat to be slid over the middle seat during boarding, to increase aisle width and allow passengers to get past.

Faster turnarounds are not the main aim for long-haul airline, Molon Labe CEO Hank Scott said, so the stagger Seat does not slide, but it will recline.The offset is used primarily to increase space for the middle-seat passenger-and potentially generate more revenue for the airline.

By staggering the middle seat vertically and fore/aft, the arms, thighs and elbows of passengers are no longer adjacent.”The Stagger Seat offers more living space for all occupants,” Scott said. ”The middle seat is also 3inches wider, while the other seats maintain their standard width.”

Source : ATW/ Molon Labe

 

               Avolon Becomes World’s Third Largest Aircraft Lessor 

Avolon, the international aircraft leasing company, announced the completion of the acquisition of the aircraft leasing business of CIT Group.

Avolon is now the world’s third largest aircraft leasing company, with a combined fleet as of December 31,2016, of 808 aircraft valued at over US$43 billion.

Transaction doubles Avolon’s size and creates the world’s third largest aircraft leasing platform; serves 149 customers in 62 countries with approximately one third of in-service aircraft leased into each of the Americas, EMEA and Asia-Pacific regions, providing balanced geographic exposure.

The combined business had an owned fleet of 551 aircraft with an average age of 4.7 years: the youngest owned, in service fleet among the world’s top three aircraft leasing companies.

Total orders and commitments for 301 aircraft include new technology aircraft comprising of 196 Airbus Aircraft (A320neo family,A330neo and A350); 61Boeing 737 MAX aircraft and 25 Boeing 787 aircraft.

Source : China Aviation Daily/Picture Airbus

     

LATEST NEWS

  • Iran Air has taken delivery of a second Airbus 330-200, two weeks after its first of the type arrived in Tehran.
  • China Aircraft Leasing Group has completed the deliveries of one Airbus A320 each to Air Asia Berhad and Thai Air Asia.
  • Porter Airlines Toronto City-based airport took delivery of its 29th Bombardier  Q400.
  • Airbus the first Airbus A319neo performed its maiden flight on March 31, powered by CFM International LEAP-1A engines.
  • MIAT Mongolian Airlines plans to lease two Boeing 737 MAXs from Irish lessor Avolon as it looks to bolster its single-aisle fleet.
  • Boeing Commercial Airplanes after a one-year pricing freeze, Boeing Commercial has raised list prices by a range between 2.16-2.23% across the product portfolio.
  • The Government of Poland announced an order for three Next-Generation 737s.  The order includes two new BBJ2 airplanes and one 737-800, which will be operated by the Government of Poland as head-of-state aircraft for the  president and top government officials.
  • Air Bridge Cargo(ABC) Airlines has taken delivery of the first two Boeing 747-8Fs under a long-term lease agreement with US-based lessor Intrepid Aviation.
  • All Nippon Airways (ANA) will lease four Boeing 737-800 aircraft while it awaited delayed deliveries of the country’s first commercial aircraft in 50 years, the 90-seat Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ)
  • Aseman Airlines of Iran signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) for 30 737 MAX aircraft, with a list price value of $3 billion.  The deal includes rights  purchase rights for 30 additional MAXs.

 

AIR CARGO

       Qatar Airways Cargo Takes Delivery of Its Twelfth B777 Freighter

Qatar Airways Cargo received its latest Boeing 777 Freighter in Doha recently, taking its total freighter fleet count to 21.   The addition marks the cargo carrier’s commitment to building its young and modern air cargo fleet to strengthen its growth trajectory.

Ulrich Ogiermann Qatar Airways’ Chief Officer Cargo said, ”The arrival of our newest Boeing 777 freighter comes at a time when we are consciously strategizing our freighter network expansion this year; above and beyond the unprecedented demand and growth in our charter services.”

The Boeing 777 freighter has the longest range of any twin-engined freighter and is based around the 777-200 LR aircraft operating on the ultra long haul routes.  It has a payload capacity of 102 metric tons.

The airplane’s range capability translates into significant savings for cargo operators: fewer stops and associated landing fees, less congestion at transfer hubs, lower cargo handling costs and shorter delivery times. The capacity of the Boeing freighters is unrivaled and the plane’s economics make it an attractive addition to the fleet.

Qatar Airways Cargo operates the Boeing 777 freighters on long-haul routes to the Americas, Europe, the Far East, Asia and some destinations in Africa.

The airline will receive another Boeing 777 freighter later this year, increasing its freighter fleet to a total of 22 aircraft by the end of 2017.

Source : Qatar Airways Cargo Press Release

Polar Express Delivery 

 

An Antonov Airlines An-124 and Air Charter Service delivered a GE90 jet engine for Swiss International Air Lines 777-300 that was forced to make an emergency landing on February 1 in the Canadian Arctic town of Iqaluit  after one of its engines shut down in mid-flight.

The GE90 arrived less than 48 hours later after the Swiss jet landed in Canada; the An-124 remained in Iqaluit for a toTal of five days, while the new engine was installed on the 777 and the unserviceable engine could be retrieved.

Fortunately,the 216 passengers on the Zurich-to-Los Angeles flight only had to wait half a day as the plane sat on the tundra until a replacement jet resumed the journey to Los Angeles.

Source : Air Cargo World

 

 MAINTENANCE, REPAIR, OVERHAUL

           Asia’s MRO Surge Could Outstrip Demand

The rapid growth of aircraft maintenance sector in the Asia-Pacific region is creating a significant risk of aver supply, according to some industry executives,  said speakers at Aviation Week’s MRO East Asia conference.

The MRO market is “reshaping itself” and has been “shifting to Asia”, saId Vehbi Ozer, Turkish Technic’s strategy planning and projects manager.  He predicts that in the near future, the Asia-Pacific region will represent the biggest MRO market.

This region now accounts for 28% of the global MRO market value of $64 billion, said Francois Dubrulle, president of asset management company The

Green Airliner Singapore, Asia has essentially caught up to Europe and North America in terms of market share.  The global total is projected to rise to $96 billion by 2025, with Asia-Pacific growth likely to exceed that of the more developed regions.

Rapid expansion is both a challenge and a danger for the MRO industry, said Daniel Stromski, Haeco’s GM for inventory technical management.  He likens the current situation to a “gold rush,” with a wide range of companies looking to set up new operations or joint ventures in Southest Asia and China.

Stromski said this is causing worries about the supply and demand balance.  While Asia represents a great opportunity for MRO providers, the “industry should be careful where it invests,” so it does not “create oversupply of MRO capabilities.”

Source : MRO Network

Latest MRO News

  • ASCO has a Boeing contract to supply had metal/aluminum structural components through 2024.
  • Fokker Services(GKN Aerospace) was named authorized service provider by Bombardier to provide Q400 component repair management under its Smart Parts program.
  • Astronics acquired operating assets of Pacific Northwest-based Custom Controls Concepts,which supplies cabin management and IFE systems for Airbus/Boeing VIP aircraft.
  • Pemco has an Air Incheon contract to convert one Boeing 747-400 to freighter.
  •  Aeromet  has a Boeing contract to supply 777X parts using its A20X aluminum alloy.

 

 

Researched and Compiled by : Ed Kaplanian

Commercial Aviation Advisor

Contact – ed@kaplanianreport.com







Volume 3 Issue 7 July 2016

ON THE BOEING FRONT

Boeing Selects iPad-Like Touch Screens For 777X Flight Deck

Future Boeing 777X airline pilots will be able to interact with their flight information displays in the same way that they use their smart phones and tablets.

Boeing has decided to integrate a multi-touch interface on the flight deck of the re-engineer wide body due to enter service in 2020, replacing a touch-pad based cursor control device (CCDs) mounted on the aisle-stand of the original 777, says Bob Feldmann, vice president and general manager of the 777X program.

The decision was made so recently that Boeing is not yet able to announce the supplier, as the contract had not been signed as of mid June, Feldmann says.

The new technology will be integrated as Boeing transitions from a standard layout of six displays in the 777 cockpit to the 787’s five display format in the 777X.  ”We think we are the first Commercial airplane to really make something that is like all our customers are used to doing in their daily lives,” Feldmann says.

In discussions with our 777X customers, Boeing received a clear preference for making the transition to multi-touch screens, Feldmann says.

The next milestone for the 777-9 development program is a critical design review scheduled earlier next year.  Production of the first test aircraft is expected to begin next June, with first flight following in 2018.

Cockpit touch screens are one of several key technologies Boeing is developing for the 777X.  The most visible innovation on the 777X is perhaps Boeing’s plan to integrate folding wingtips, a feature normally found on fighters based on space constrained aircraft carriers.

Source : Flightglobal/Boeing

                 

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT

Airbus Starting A330neo Final Assembly in October

Airbus is working through some high profile issues with the introduction of the A350 and the A320neo to market, but surely wishes those programs were low-profile as the A330neo.  The reengineer A330 program, is progressing more quietly and without major problems that have kept Airbus in the news.

The A330-900, the first reengineer version of the family, is due to enter service by the end of 2017, followed by the smaller -800 a year later.  Airbus hopes the program’s lower costs – combined with the fuel burn reduction the new engines are expected to provide and the new cabin designed to align it with the larger A350’s interior – will be sufficient to counter the Boeing 787.

Airbus is well on the way to producing the A330neo subassemblies. The first wing is essentially completed in the Broughton, England facility with only the sharklets missing, and the second is close behind.  Along with engines and the new cabin, the wing has seen the most modifications of the major components. At 64 m(210 ft), the A330neo wingspan has grown by 4 m (13.1 ft) over the the A330ceo’s and has been structurally reinforced to accommodate the Neo’s heavier engines. The wing-to-body-juncture also has been redesigned.

In parallel, the first A330neo nose section is completed at the Saint-Nazaire plant in France.  Airbus has a total of 186 orders for the two versions of the A330neo,10 for the A330-800 and the rest for the larger -900.  Hawaiian Airlines has ordered 6 -800s and 4 for TransAsia Airways

Source : China Aviation Daily/Airbus Photo

  

REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

 Mitsubishi Starts Final Assembly of First Delivery Jet

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries is set to begin final assembly of the first customer aircraft for the MRJ regional jet program, with various sections of the fuselage having been delivered to the MRJ final assembly hanger.In a newsletter, Mitsubishi Aircraft says it will work through the final assembly process, with an eye on delivery to launch customer All Nippon Airways in mid 2018. The Japanese airframe also gave an update of the MRJ flight tests, which are ongoing using two test aircraft.  It says valid results have been obtained from FTA-2, which started flying on May 31st, including the confirmation of emergency response measures – such as flying with one  engine, activation of emergency power units and stall tests.

Various tests are also being carried out as the program prepares for ferry flight to Moses  Lake, Washington State, this summer.

These include the expansion of its flight envelop to it’s design specifications of a maximum speed of Mach 0.78 and a maximum altitude of 39,000 ft, conducting instrument flights,plus checking on terrain awareness, warning system and collision avoidance system.

Its Moses Lake Flight Test Center meanwhile has been conducting flights using a small aircraft, rehearsing for the test missions ahead.

Mitsubishi adds that preparations are underway for FTA-3 and FTA-4 to take their first flights this summer.

Source : Flightglobal/Photo/Mitsubishi Aircraft

                                                                       

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

 First CSeries Aircraft is Delivered to SWISS

Bombardier delivered the first CSeries aircraft to Lufthansa subsidiary Swiss International Air Lines(SWISS), at ceremonies in Montreal on June 29th.

The delivery marks an important milestone in an aircraft program beset with technical problems, delays and difficulty securing customers.  Swiss originally ordered 20 CS100 and 10 CS300s, plus 30 options, but then converted five 100s to the 300 variant.

The handover should begin a process in which SWISS will receive nine aircraft by year end, taking one aircraft per month this month, August and September.  After that, deliveries will increase to two aircraft per month.  The first aircraft will enter service this month.

On June 23, Bombardier signed a definitive agreement with the Quebec government for $1billion investment in the CSeries program.  The assets, liabilities and obligations of the program have been transferred to the CSeries Aircraft Limited Partnership(CSALP) of which 50.5% is owned by Bombardier and 49.5% by the provincial government through Investment  Quebec.

The money will be used for cash-flow purposes, representing half of the $2 billion Bombardier says is required to take the CSeries program to cash-flow positive production in 2020.

The $2 billion includes funds to cover losses on discounted sales to marquee customers, including Air Canada and Delta Air Lines deals which Bombardier will record a $500 billion this quarter to cover “onerous contract provisions.”

The Canadian federal government, meanwhile, confirmed it is continuing negotiations with Bombardier about investing in the CSeries partnership.

Source : ATW/Bombardier Photo

 Pratt & Whitney to Invest $65m in Georgia GTF Maintenance Site              

Pratt & Whitney will invest $65 million in maintenance site near Columbus, Georgia, where the company maintains and overhauls PW 1000G geared turbofans (GTFs).  The investment, which comes as the company embarks on massive GTF production ramp up, will help P&W ensure it has infrastructure in place to meet increasing maintenance demand, P&W said in a media release.

Also, later this year the company expects construction will begin on an additional engine test facility at the site in Columbus, which is about 90 miles(145km) south of Atlanta, P&W says.

The company has orders for more than 7,100 GTFs, executives have said.  P&W will manufacture about 200 of the engines this year, but the company forecasts production will hit 400 in 2017, 600 in 2018 and 1,200 annually by 2020, executives have said.

The Columbus maintenance site is also where P&w is modifying a number of in-service PW 1100Gs to address a slow-engine-start issue, P&W aftermarket president Matthew Bromberg has told Flightglobal.

Source : Flightglobal/P&W

Air Lease Corp. Names New CEO;  Udvar-Hazy to Be Executive Chairman

Air Lease Corp.(ALC) has appointed John Plueger as president and CEO, effective July 1, as current CEO Steven Udvar-Hazy assumes the role of Executive chairman of the board, a full-time officer role.

Steve Udvar-Hazy started ALC in February 2010, the company owns and manages 268 young and in-demand jet aircraft on lease to 88 airline customers around the world.  It has an order book of 386 new jet aircraft to be delivered from Airbus and Boeing through 2023.

Plueger joined ALC as president, COO and board member in March 2010, shortly after the company was formed.  Plueger has more than 30 years of aviation experience, 24 of which were with International Lease Finance Corp.

Udar-Hazy said, ”John and I have worked together for over 30 years and I am extremely proud of what we have accomplished in six short years at ALC.  I look forward to continuing to partner with John in my new role”.

Source : ATW

                 

LATEST NEWS

  • Emirates  took delivery of its 80th A380 to join the Emirates the A380 fleet and the airline has another 62 on order including 21 to be delivered this year.
  • Gulfstream  G500 business jet program has reached another milestone with the completion of the ultimate load testing on June 16.
  • Irkut Corporation Russian aircraft manufacturer rolled out its MC-21-300 on June 8 at its factory in Irkutsk.
  • Chengdu Airline made its first commercial flight with China’s home grown ARJ21 on June 28 with 70 passengers on board.  Chengdu is the launch customer for the ARJ21.
  • Alaska Airlines took delivery of a 737-900 painted in a special livery to celebrated Boeing’s 100th Birthday.

  • Bombardier Commercial Aircraft has announced that an unidentified customer has signed a firm purchase order for 10 CRJ900 aircraft.  The agreement is valued at $472 million at list prices.
  • HNA Group (Hainan Airline mother company) will become the biggest customer of both Airbus and Boeing aircraft within the next 10 years.  Hainan Airlines welcomed its first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner on June 10.
  • Ethiopian Airlines took delivery of the first of 14 Airbus A350 XWBs on June 28, making it Africa’s first operator of the type.

  • Embraer E190-E2 has achieved first flight in Sao Jose dos Campos, Brazil, earlier than expected.
  • Xiamen Airlines will be the sixth airlines to fly from Seattle to China using the Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner.  The three-times weekly service will connect to Xiamen, a city 360 miles to the northeast of Shenzhen.
  • Nile Air, Egyptian based carrier, began operations from Cairo to  Al Ain international airport in Abu Dhabi located on the Omani border.

AIR CARGO

 FedEx’s 270 Boeing Planes

Package delivery company, FedEx Corp, owned 582 airplanes at the end of May 2015 and leased another 65 for a total fleet of 647 planes.  Of the planes owned,241 were manufactured by the Boeing Company or by McDonnell Douglas prior to its merger with Boeing in1997.  Another 29 Boeing planes were leased, bringing FedEx’s total Boeing fleet to 270 planes.

The most popular Boeing aircraft in the FedEx fleet is now the 757-200, a dual-engine narrow body that Boeing configured as a cargo plane.  The plane can carry 63,000 pounds of cargo with maximum range of 3,625 miles.  The average age of these planes in FedEx fleet is nearly 25 years.  Boeing sold more than 1,000 of the planes and delivered the last new 757 in 2004.(it went to Shanghai Airlines in China)

Boeing had also supplied FedEx with 21 767-300 cargo freighters at the end of May 2015 (the end of the most recent fiscal year for which the company has produced an annual report).  FedEx ordered 50 more of the wide body planes last July with an option on 50 more.  At list price of $199.3 million per plane, the order was valued at nearly $20 billion.

Why buy an old design? it is simple to replace even older ones and reduce the variety of planes in FedEx’s fleet.  FedEx’s 767s average less than three years old.  The 767 is also more fuel efficient and shares many parts with the 757s in the fleet; plus it is a great aircraft.

Because Boeing is building the Air Force tanker, The KC-46A, on the 767 airframe, FedEx is assured of spare parts for at lease another 40 years, the expected life of the tanker.

Finally, FedEx reported 27 Boeing 777 freighters in its fleet at the end of November 2015, and in January the company said it had committed to another 16 at a list price of $318.7 per plane,for an order totaling more than $5 billion.

Source : 24/7 Wall St/ Boeing Photo/Ed’s Research.

 

  MILITARY NEWS

China’s New Y-20 Is the Largest Military Aircraft Currently in Production 

The Y-20 is China’s version of the C-17 Globemaster.  The first Xian Y-20 military transport aircraft was delivered to the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) on June 15. Developed by Xian Aircraft Corporation, the Y-20 has an empty weight of 110 short tons, making it the largest military aircraft currently in production – larger than Russia’s Ilyushin Il-76.  Boeing’s C-17 Globemaster III is bigger than the Y-20, the C-17’s empty weight is about 60,000 pounds more than the Y-20.  Its payload capacity is 25,000 pounds more, but production stopped in 2015, making the Y-20 the biggest that currently rolling out of factories.

The Y-20 has the official codename “Kunpeng” after a mythical Chinese bird, though it is nicknamed “Chubby Girl” for its appearance.  The Y-20 is remarkably similar to the C-17.  Currently the Y-20 uses four Russian made Soloviev D-30 turbofan engines; however, plans are to replace the engines with Chinese-made Shenyang WS-20 turbofans by 2020 to give the plane short takeoff capabilities and a greater range.

Source : Popular Mechanics/AIN Online

 

 

Researched and Compiled by : Ed Kaplanian

Commercial Aviation Advisor

Contact – ed@kaplanianreport.com

Volume 2 Issue 10 The Kaplanian Report

ON THE BOEING FRONT

 The Venerable Boeing 767 Lives on as a Freighter

Boeing is planning to increase production of its wide-body 767 aircraft to 2.5 a month in 2017. The proposed plans come after American courier delivery major FedEx signed a $10 billion deal to purchase 50 additional 767-300F airliners in July.

Boeing currently produces the 767 at a monthly production rate of 1.5, which will be increased to two in early 2016.

gallery-full-05

Since 1981, the company has built passenger and freighter versions of the jet at its Everett assembly line. It was the second twin-aisle aircraft designed to accommodate up to 290 passengers and the second twin-aisle aircraft to be built at the Everett site after the 747.

A Boeing spokesman was quoted by The Wall Street Journal as saying: ”Increasing the production rate in 2017 provides flexibility needed to address additional commercial orders while meeting all our customer requirements.” According to reliable sources Boeing is negotiating with FedEx rival UPS for another large order and there is a Chinese express-cargo carrier considering a move into the wide-body market, with the 767 as a likely candidate.

In addition, Boeing is preparing to commence production of a modified version of the 767, which will serve as the future refueling tanker for the US Air Force (the KC-46) and had it first flight on September 25th, 2016.

Source : Aerospace-Technology/Ed’s Research/Photo Boeing

 

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT 

 Airbus Details Dimensions of A330-Based Beluga

Airbus’s new Beluga XL transport will be some 4.3 m (14.1ft) longer than the A330-200 on which the aircraft is based.

The Beluga XL, which will succeed the smaller A300-600ST within the airframe’s logistics fleet, has reached design freeze.

Airbus has disclosed that it will be 63.m (207 ft) in length while its wing span will remain  unchanged from the A330-200’s at 60.3m (97 ft)

The Aircraft’s next development stage will be the detailed design freeze.

Airbus says a review has shown that the Rolls-Royce Trent 700-powered jet is sufficiently “robust and mature” to move out of the concept phase. Final assembly is scheduled to begin in 2017.

The Beluga XL will be around 1.5m (4.9 ft) taller at fin than the A330 counterpart.

Airbus projects that it will have a maximum take-off weight of 227t compared with 155t for the current A300-600ST.

The XL, with an 8.8m-diameter fuselage, will be able to transport a maximum payload of 53t over a range of 2,200nm.   Airbus expects to put the Beluga XL, of which it will construct five, into service in 2019.

Source : Flightglobal

 

BUSINESS/REGIONAL NEWS

 Embraer Begins Assembling the First E190-E2

Two years after the launch of the program at the Air Show in Le Bourget, Paris, the first E-Jets E2 family, an E190-E2, is beginning to be assembled at the company’s factory in Sao Jose dos Campos.  Embraer has already received the first sub-assemblies from suppliers in several countries and the assembly of the first prototype is moving forward as planned.

“It is exciting to see the E2 taking shape with the large amount of sub-sets arriving to our Sao Jose dos Campos facility, where the final assembly will soon begin,” says Luis Carlos Affonso, Senior Vice President & COO, Embraer Commercial Aviation.

At Embraer’s plant in the city of Evora, Portugal, the first sub-assemblies for the wings and central fuselage are ready. In Spain, Aernnova AEROSPACE S>A. is finishing the assembly of the vertical empennage; the company will also supply the horizontal empennage. In the Czech Republic, Latecoere finished the baggage doors and they have already been sent to Brazil to be installed in the aircraft.

In the United States, Triumph Aerostructures, which is also responsible for the rudder and elevator, is assembling section three and the aft of the fuselage; these are the only large segments that will not be manufactured by Embraer.

Eleb, an Embraer wholly owned subsidiary, with 35 years of experience in designing and manufacturing landing gear, was chosen to supply the landing gear of the second-generation E-Jets, and it is working to conclude the first sets.

The first delivery of an E-Jets (the E190-E2 is planned for the first quarter of 2018.  The E195-E2 is scheduled to enter service in 2019 and the E175-E2 in 2020.

Source : Embraer

 

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

Lufthansa Technik Completes First BBJ Split Scimitar Winglet Modification 

German maintenance, repair and overhaul provider Lufthansa Technik has become the first European company to install Aviation Partner(API’S) new split scimitar winglets(SSW) on a Boeing Business Jet.

The modification took 10 days to complete and comes on the heels of EASA approval for the aerodynamic wingtip-developed jointly by API and Boeing.

The SSW retrofit involves replacing the BBJ’s current winglet tip caps with an aerodynamically shaped similar tip cap, and adding a smaller, similar-shaped vertical strake.

Lufthansa Technik said that in order to install the winglets, its engineering team were required to “reinforce various areas on the inside of the aircraft structure, particularly in the wing tanks”. The project also in evolved “complex painting tasks…to match the aircraft’s current paint  scheme”, it adds.

API launched the retrofit program two years ago for owners and operators of BBJ, BBJ2 and BBJ3 VIP airliners (BBJ is based on the 737-700, BBJ2 is based on the 737-800 and the BBJ3 is based on the 737-900 airliners)

According to Seattle, Washington-based API, the new winglet helps to reduce drag on long-range flights and boosts range by around 2%-or as much as 120nm ( 220km).

Lufthansa Technik is now in talks with other BBJ owners looking to modify their aircraft with the SSW adaption.

Source : Flightglobal / Lufthansa Technik

 

Rizal Ramli Urges Garuda to Cancel Airbus A350 Purchase Plan

After being on the job one day, recently appointed Coordinating Maritime Affairs Minister Rizal Ramli has made news by requesting national flag carrier Garuda Indonesia cancel its fleet expansion plan.

“I made the request to President Jokowi. I don’t want Garuda to go bankrupt again. In July it agreed to buy 30 Airbus A350 using $44.5 billion loan from China Aviation Bank. The aircraft is only suitable for Jakarta-North America and Jakarta-Europe route.” said Rizal.

According to Rizal, the international routes planned by the carrier are unprofitable. Airlines in Southeast Asia that offer similar routes, such as Singapore Airlines, have poor financial performance, he pointed out.

Rizal added that Garuda’s routes to Europe only had a 30 percent passenger load factor. Instead of expanding its international routes it would be better if Garuda concentrated on the domestic and regional markets.

“We can rule the regional market in five to seven years. When we are strong enough, then we can go onto the next step. The President has agreed to the cancellation of the purchase of the Airbus 350 and we will summon the Garuda management to change its plans,” said Rizal.

Separately, Garuda Indonesia vice president for corporate communication M.Ikhsan Rosan said the carrier had not made a final decision on the purchase of the Airbus A350. Ikhsan said the carrier was considering whether it would use Airbus A350 or Boeing 787.

“It is true there was a signing ceremony in Paris with Airbus in June, but it was a letter of intent,” said Ikhsan.

Source : Jakarta Post

 

Bombardier Seeking Investors for all Business Units : Sources

Canada’s Bombardier Inc is exploring the sale of a stake in any of its business areas, not just its rail unit, to ensure it can finish development of its delayed C Series jet, according to sources familiar with the situation.

The Montreal-based company has hired investment bankers to look at a variety of financing options, the sources said, including selling aerospace or rail assets in full or in part, forming joint ventures or bringing in private equity investors. One source familiar with the company’s thinking said Bombardier hoped to secure some additional source of cash, through the sale of a business unit or another arrangement, perhaps with Canadian government, before its third-quarter earnings report on October 29th.

A banking source said the company is not desperate for cash but wants to be proactive and shore up its stock, which has dropped more than 50 percent in the last year as it pushes to bring the new C Series jet into service, years late and billions over budget.

In May, the company said it planned to file late this year to launch an initial public offering for a minority stake in its rail unit, Bombardier Transportation. Spokeswoman Isabelle Rondeau said that the plan had not changed.

“Everything is on the table,” said the source familiar with the Company’s thinking.

“They’re aggressively looking worldwide for some sort of capital infusion. At the end of the day, they need more cash to keep the C Series going, because the future of the company depends on that Plane”

“We are in constant contact with Bombardier and won’t comment on rumors,” a spokeswoman for Quebec’s economy minister said.

Source : The Globe And Mail

 

LATEST NEWS IN BRIEF  

  • British Airways receives the first 787-9, and will enter service on the 25th of this month.
  • Aeroflot drops plans to acquire Transaero. The Russian government will allow Transaero to enter bankruptcy placing the carrier’s future in serious doubt.
  • Mitsubishi Aircraft has narrowed the target schedule for the first flight of the MRJ to the last week of this month. Between Oct. 26th and Oct. 30th.
  • Blue Air(Romania)  is set to establish a base in Turin, Italy with effect from 26th of this month. The airline has a fleet of Boeing Classic aircraft composed of 737-300, 400s and one 737-500.

yrbac

  • Airbus flies the second CFM International Leap-powered A320neo into the type’s flight-test campaign.
  • Alaska Airlines has become just the second North American carrier to achieve Fast Travel Platinum status, which is awarded by IATA to airlines that offer four or more Fast Travel compliant options to at least 80% of their passengers.
  • Boeing employees in Renton, Wash. have started the final assembly of the first 737 MAX 8,  the first member of Boeing’s new single-aisle family, on schedule.  More Detailed report on this aircraft will be coming in my next report.
  • Emirates celebrated the Boeing 777 fleet completing 859,000 flights while logging over 4,720,000 flight hours since its first delivery in 1996.
  • Scandinavian Airlines has taken delivery of its first 242t Airbus A330-300; making it the first carrier in Europe to receive the higher-weight, longer-range-300 variant.
  • Flybe UK regional introduced its first ATR 72-600 series aircraft into its fleet, on lease from Aviation PLC. It will operate from Sweden in the livery of Flybe’s new partner in Northern Europe, Scandinavian Airlines (SAS)

  • Jetstars transition to an all Boeing 787-8 long-haul fleet is almost complete after the low-cost carrier’s 11th and final Dreamliner on firm order entered revenue service in mid September.

 

AIR CARGO

Atlas to Operate B767 Converts for DHL

US aircraft lessor Atlas Air will operate two Boeing 767Fs leaded by its Titan Aviation arm to DHL Express.

Atlas Air will operate the aircraft, which are being converted from passenger to freighter configuration, through sister company Polar Air Cargo Worldwide, linking the flights with Polar’s existing services for DHL and other customers.

The new operation represents a continued expansion of Atlas Air’s crew, maintenance and insurance(CMI) service. The operation is expected to begin in late 2015 and early 2016 following the conversion of the two 767s.

“By growing our CMI operations, we continue to diversify our business mix and to drive more predictable revenue and earnings streams,” said William Flynn, president and chief executive of parent group, Atlas Air Worldwide.

The company will operate 20 aircraft in its CMI operations when these units commence service.

Source : aircargonews/Atlas Air

 

MILITARY NEWS

Boeing to Lead $ 4 Billion F-15 Jet Fighter Contract 

An aging but formidable fighter jet is being given new relevance in a bid to fill the gap created by delays in the world’s most expensive new generation combat aircraft program.

Boeing was named the first week of this month as prime contractor on a $4 billion contract to install a new, all digital electronic warfare and threat detection system on the F-15 fighter, which made its first flight more than 40 years ago and was never been defeated in air-air combat.

Often described as the backbone of the US Air Force’s air superiority, the F-15 tactical fighter jet was due to be replaced in the 2020s by more advanced fifth generation aircraft such as the F-35.

However delays in developing and fielding the F-35, and cutbacks in the procurement of another fighter-the F-22- prompted the USAF to extend the life of the F-15 until 2040.

BAE Systems of the UK will develop the electronic warfare suite in a deal worth some $1 billion over 10 years, of which $67 million will be booked this year. BAE said the contract was significant milestone in the group’s plan to extend the electronic combat solutions business. The new system will replace the current Tactical Electronic Warfare Suite developed by Northrop Grumman, which has been in use since the 1980s.

The new threat detection system will be installed on more than 400 F-15 Es and F-15 Cs.

Source : Financial Times

 

          Boeing’s KC-46 Pegasus Hits a Key Milestone 

Boeing seems to get a bum rap from the so-called analysts, who think that they know better what happens at Boeing with every product they come up with.  The same applies to the KC-46 tanker.

Fortunately, the project is back on track, on September 25th Boeing completed an initial four-hour test flight for the first KC-46 tanker. There is plenty of testing left to do, but Boeing will salvage the KC-46 program and turn a decent profit as Boeing know how to build airplanes.

The initial flight conducted last month checked the plane’s basic systems. According to the company, ”Boeing test pilots performed operational checks on engines, flight controls and environmental systems and took the tanker to a maximum altitude of 35,000 feet prior to landing.”

Boeing still expects to be able to test the refueling system and then do aerial refueling trial runs before the end of the year.

In the opinion of this writer and shareholder of The Boeing Company the KC-46 program will be a great success, the same as the 787 program, which got its share of bad publicity from the so-called financial experts

Source : Ed’s opinion/Picture Boeing

 

 

Researched and Compiled by : Ed Kaplanian

Commercial Aviation Advisor

Contact – ekaplanian@msn.com

 

Volume 2 Issue 7 July 2015

ON THE BOEING FRONT

Boeing 757 ecoDemonstrator Embarks on Final Test Run 

Energy-harvesting windows, green diesel biofuel and a 3D-printed flight deck monument are three technologies that will be tested on the last series of flights of T U I  G r o u p – b r a n d e d 7 5 7 ecoDemonstrator; destined to be dismantled by the end of this month. Boeing has partnered with the  Aircraft  Fleet  Recycling  Association  to  disassemble the 757 at the conclusion of the tests.  In the pioneering spirit of the ecoDemonstrator program; however, the disassembly will serve as an opportunity to validate a variety of new options for recycling the various materials and systems.

yourfile

“We are going to recycle the heck out of the airplane”, says Jeanne Yu, Boeing’s environmental performance director, in a recent interview. “Boeing will look to recycle some components in the existing fleet or recycle pieces to be used in other ways on flying aircraft”, she says. Until then, the 757 ecoDemonstrator will continue a new series of flight tests after a first series concluded two months ago.

The 757 ecoDemonstrator follows a series of tests in 2012 on an American Airlines 737-800 and in 2014 a former 787 test aircraft. The first series of flights on the 757 focused on several drag-reducing technologies; such as an active flow control system mounted on a tail fin, bug “phobic” coatings on the leading edge of the right wing and a laminar flow-protecting Krueger flap on the left wing. Finally, the 757 ecoDemonstrator flight deck also features an aft aisle stand made using scrap carbon fiber material from the 787 production system.  A3D printer was used to transform the crap material into the aisle stand.

Source: Boeing/Flightglobal /Photo Boeing

 

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT 

Airbus A380 Shows Off Illuminated Decal Technology 

One of Airbus’s A380 test aircraft has demonstrated a new electro-luminescent display technology designed for external use on the aircraft.

yourfile

The technology developed by Safran division Aircelle, comprises thin markings which can be applied to the fuselage skin and engine nacelle to provide illuminated branding and logos using on-board electrical power.

Initial airborne tests using A380 MSN1 were carried out at night on June 8th, with the aircraft featuring an Airbus logo on its outboard left-hand Rolls-Royce tent 900 power plant.

Aircelle says the flight was able to demonstrate the “brightness, clarity and readability” of the marking in various lighting conditions.

Aircelle showed the development at the Paris Air Show last month, Aircelle says that the display can be placed “almost anywhere” on the aircraft, including the underside of the fuselage and the tail.

Source : Flightglobal/Picture Airbus

 

BUSINESS/REGIONAL NEWS

Gulfstream Boosts Connectivity for G450 and G550 

Gulfstream has received Us Federal Aviation Administration approval for a modification that allows operators of G450 and G550 aircraft to benefit from enhanced connectivity.

Gulfstream_G450_G550

Covering the installation of the Satcom Direct Router, (SDR) the enhancement simplifies cabin communications on the two twin jets.

“This equipment elevates the airborne office to a new level,” says Mike West, vice-president product support sales and new business development, Gulfstream.

“The addition of a smart router allows for more communications options in the cabin, including Satcom Direct’s GlobalVT, which allows passengers to use their personal smartphones to call and text in flight.”

The SDR also supports mobile applications for onboard cabin services, including moving map and flight tracker, command and control of satellite links and real-time connection status reporting.

Installation of the SDR and accompanying software is standard on new G550 and G450 aircraft and available as a retrofit for in-service examples.

Gulfstream is pursuing similar supplemental type certificates from the FAA to add the enhancement to G650/G650ER, GV and GIV aircraft.

Source: Flightglobal/Gulfstream

 

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

 

Lufthansa Technik Partners with GE for GE9X and GEnx-2B Overhaul

Lufthansa Technik is building a joint-venture overhaul shop with General Electric to service the engines powering Boeing 747-8s and the in development 777X.

The two partners signed a tentative agreement at the Paris Air Show last month, though the closing of the deal will depend on regulatory approval, says the German MRO group. Lufthansa operates 747-8s and has 777Xs  on order, but third-party clients’ engines will also be supported from the European facility.

While the precise location of the operation has still to be decided, a 2018 opening is targeted.

Lufthansa Technik’s own engine overhaul facilities – except for regional aircraft power plants – have traditionally been at its base in Hamburg. It has a shop for CFM International CFM56s and international Aero V2500s; plus a separate facility for large legacy types such as the CF 6.

Capability to overhaul the 777X-powering GE9X promises to give the new joint venture access to a large party customer market, but there appears to be limited potential for services on the GEnx-2B, which equips the 747-8.

The site will form part of GE’s network of international repair facilities, and the two partners will cooperate on development of repairs and on-wing support services.

Source:Flightglobal/GE Aviation

 

Royal Jordanian Eyes North America After European Traffic Decline

Royal Jordanian Airlines is planning to expand its transatlantic network as traffic from Europe has declined as a result of political crises in the Middle East and North Africa.

The airline lost “most” of its tourist traffic originating from European countries because travel packages often combined Jordan with Syria and Egypt, fleet and network planning director Eyad Birouti told Flightglobal at the Connect conference in Killarney in Ireland.

Washington DC and Toronto could be served nonstop from Amman with the airline’s five Boeing 787 fleet. But 787-8 flights to Los Angeles, with full payload, would require a fuel stop in Europe, said Birouti. Amsterdam, Dublin and Vienna are among the cities being investigated as potential stopover points.

The carrier is also planning network expansions in Africa and Asia to compensate for declining traffic from Europe, said Birouti. Connecting flights to the Asia-Pacific region could be a way of filling aircraft on existing routes from Europe.

Source : Royal Jordanian

 

Rolls-Royce Makes Progress on Testing 787 Engine Upgrade

Rolls-Royce is close to completing a round of testing on the latest version of the Trent 1000 engine for the Boeing 787, according to the Arnold Engineering Development Center (AEDC) in the USA.

Since earlier this year, AEDC has hosted an R-R team performing altitude operability performance and icing tests on engine serial number 11003, one of several prototypes developed to certificate the Trent 1000-TEN upgrade.

The tests on engine 11003 have been “fantastically successful”, according to Tom Schmidt, a project manager for Aerospace Testing Alliance, which was overseeing the testing by AEDC.

That echoes comments by R-R executives last month, who said the then-ongoing testing at AEDC had shown better fuel efficiency for the Trent 1000-TEN at higher altitudes.

The TEN upgrade migrates several features developed for the Trent XWB engine back into the lower-thrust engine for the 787. The new features include a rising-line compressor and a three-stage blisk at the front of the high-pressure compressor section.

Rolls-Royce has predicted that the Trent 1000-TEN upgrade will provide a 3% advantage on fuel consumption on short flights to 3,000nm; compared to the competing GE Aviation GEnx-1B engine.

Source : Flight Global /Rolls- Royce

 

GE Aviation, Woodward Form Fuel Systems Joint Venture

GE Aviation and Woodward Inc. have formed a 50/50 venture to design, develop, source, supply and service fuel systems for GE90,GEnx, GE9X and future GE large commercial engines.

GE Aviation president and CEO David Joyce said the joint venture will “further strengthen both companies’ capabilities and secure a high quality fuel systems supplier for GE’s record production volume on large commercial engines.”

According to GE Aviation, production rates for its jet engines and components have increased significantly over the last five years; with large commercial engine production more than doubling to close to 500 engines in 2015.

GE Aviation said that under the terms of the joint venture agreement, Woodward will receive $250 million in cash, and the parties will participate jointly in the operating results of respective programs.

Source : ATW/GE Aviation

 

LATEST NEWS IN BRIEF  

  • United Airlines will spend $100 million to acquire a 5% stake in Azul Brazilian Airlines. The two carriers have entered into a strategic partnership that will include code-sharing and reciprocal loyalty program benefits.
  • GE Capital Aviation Services Limited (GECAS) has completed a purchase-and-leaseback transaction with Lion Group subsidiary PT Batik Air Indonesia for four new Airbus A320s.
  • Avolon delivered a Boeing 737-800 to Hainan Airlines. This delivery is Avolon’s first aircraft on lease to Hainan Airlines.
  • Bombardier has delivered its 500th Q400 turboprop aircraft to Calgary-based WestJet Encore.
  • Enter Air announced an order for two 737MAX 8s and two Next-Generation 737-800s.  It is the first direct order for Boeing from the Polish charter carrier.

  • Vietnam Airlines took delivery of its first Airbus A350-900, becoming the second operator of the type.

vietnamairlinesa350xwb-usethisone

  • Transaero Airline has expanded its European Aviation Safety Agency’s (EASA) certificate to include performing C checks on Boeing 737 Classic and 737NG aircraft.
  • Swiss International Air Line has confirmed that it will be the first operator of the Cseries, with service entry slated for the first half of 2016.
  • Embraer has secured firm orders from three airlines and one aircraft lessor for a total of 50 E-Jets, evenly split between the current generation and the E2 variants.
  • Saudia became the launch customer for the A330-300 Regional with a firm order for 20 of the aircraft plus a firm order for 20 A320ceos.

 

Air Cargo

CAL Cargo Air Lines to Transport Aircraft Engines

CAL Cargo Air lines has launched “CAL Express”, service specifically designed for the transportation of aircraft engines.

Under the new service, the carrier will transport every size and type of aircraft engines around the world, using 747-400s.  CAL is also qualified to deal with dangerous goods, so the carrier will be able to transport non-purged engines as well.

This new service also includes ground-handling, storage and road-feeder services.  In the case of aircraft on the ground, CAL is including expedited customs clearance and transit time, as well as charter options.

According to Eyal Zagagi, CEO of Cal Cargo Airlines, one of the reasons CAL Engines was created in response to a 25% per year increase in engine transport business over the last few years.

Source: Air Cargo World / CAL Photo

 

DHL Expands Global Reach with Cincinnati Upgrade

It is no surprise that DHL’s largest U.S. hub is in Cincinnati.  Its central location allows the express carrier to best reach the U.S. East and West coasts from a flight timing perspective.

Since its exit from the US domestic express market in 2009, DHL has set its sights on growing in international service to/from that country.  DHL invested US$108 million to upgrade and expand its American hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport (CVG).  Travis Cobb, DHL’s senior vice president, network operations Americas, said part of the investment would be for a new apron to accommodate an additional 18 aircraft. The remainder would be used for infrastructure, including warehousing and automation.

The Cincinnati hub is one of three global DHL hubs – the others are Leipzig,Germany and Hong Kong. Globally, Cincinnati is second in size and volume only the Leipzig hub, processing approximately 46 million international shipments annually.

Source:   Air Cargo World/DHL

 

                                         MILITARY

Boeing Shifts toward Full-Rate Production of Navy Submarine Hunter

Workers assembling Boeing’s biggest Puget Sound area military contract are preparing to lift its production rate; now that the first group of P-8A  submarine hunter aircraft have proved to be a good investment for the government.

The planned increase to 1.5 aircraft monthly will be dwarfed by the 42-monthly rate for the civilian version from the same Renton site.  It is a significant step for the P-8A.

The P-8A Poseidon is an important contract for Boeing’s military side, and it is also important for the Puget Sound area.

In February 2014, Boeing won a $2.4 billion contract for the first 16 of the full-rate jets. Eventually, the Navy wants 117.

The P-8A contract is important for Boeing and the region; partly because of the revenue it’s pulling in, partly because the program is running so smoothly.

Source : Puget Sound Business Journal

 

Canada Accepts First Six Sikorsky CH-148 Cyclones

The Royal Canadian Air Force has accepted delivery of its first six Sikorsky CH-148 Cyclone maritime patrol helicopters, making a major step forward for the Sea King replacement program.

The Total value of the Cyclone acquisition is $7.6 billion,including $1.9 billion for development and production of 28 helicopters and$5.7 over 20 years for service contractor support.

The twin-engine, medium-lift Cyclone is derived from Sikorsky’s civil S-92 and is designed for shipboard maritime surveillance and rescue operations on Canada’s east and west coasts.

The cyclones will replace 27 long serving Sikorsky CH-124 Sea Kings that have been in constant operation since 1963 and are the oldest aircraft in the RCAF inventory.

Source : Flightglobal/Picture Canadian Armed Force

 

Researched and Compiled by : Ed Kaplanian

Commercial Aviation Advisor

Contact – ed@kaplanianreport.com