Volume 4 Issue 4 April 2017 The Kaplanian Report

ON THE BOEING FRONT 

The Boeing 777 Flies Seven of the World’s Ten Longest Routes

A new list of the world’s ten longest commercial airline routes shows the Boeing 777 maintains its strong position as the world’s favorite long distance aircraft.

The 777 flies seven of the routes and the Airbus A380 flies two. Two newer aircraft, the Boeing 787 and the Airbus A350, both fly the 10th route between San Francisco and Singapore. United began service in June 2016 and Singapore followed in October. (this is according to OAG)

Looking ahead, Singapore Airlines has said it will begin a 9,534-mile, eighteen-and-a-half hour Singapore-Newark flight in 2018, using an Airbus A350-900ULR. Singapore previously operated the route with a four engine-A340, but discontinued it in 2013.  Also, in 2018, Qantas plans to operate a 9,009 mile, 17-hour Perth-London flight with a Boeing 787-900.

John Grant, OAG senior analyst, said the two new aircraft types will allow airlines to open more ultra-long-distance routes because the lightweight planes are smaller than their wide body predecessors, but still carry sufficient fuel for trips.

“As more extended range-second generation A350s and 787s come to production and are delivered in the next few years, it will allow airlines to operate more flights in these sectors,” Grant said.

Grant foresees that as airlines begin to operate more ultra-long flights, they may add more first class and business class seating, not simply to boost per-seat revenue, but also reduce the number of passengers and weight of aircraft.

Source : Forbes

        ON THE AIRBUS FRONT

 Airbus A350-1000 Undergoes Low-Speed Take-off  Tests 

Airbus has been carrying out low-speed take-off tests with one of the A350-1000 development aircraft as it heads towards certification later this year.

The first of three A350-1000 test aircraft (MSN59) has a tail bumper installed, enabling its rear fuselage to be dragged along the runway in trials to establish VMU minimum unstick speeds. The tests, which took place in early March at Istres in Southern France, help to verify slat and flap settings and performance criteria.

Airbus is working towards certification of the A350-1000 this year, to clear the way for deliveries of the stretched A350 derivative to begin in the second half of this year with Qatar as the first recipient.

The flight-test trials involve a trio of Rolls-Royce Trent XWB-97 powered A350-1000s. The third test aircraft (MSN71) recently returned from cold-weather trains in Iqaluit, Canada, where it was exposed to temperatures as low as -37 degrees Centigrade during an overnight soak. The aircraft subsequently undertook high-altitude take-off and landing tests at LaPaz airport in Bolivia.

Source : Flightglobal/Airbus/Airbus Picture

                   

REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

Third and Final Pilatus PC-24 Enters Flight Testing

Pilatus Aircraft’s PC-24 business jet has entered the final stages of its certification program, following the maiden sortie of its third and final test aircraft.

Pilatus describes the debut flight as another important milestone in the PC-24’s development. It comes 22 months after the arrival of the first prototype kick started the validation program. Aircraft PO2 joined the campaign in November 2015, and the pair have since logged more than 1,350 flying hours, the airframer says.

Pilatus chairman Oscar Schwenk calls the results of the flight-test campaign ”very encouraging” and says the data collected so far indicates that the jet, the company’s first, exceeds published performance figures. These include a maximum cruise speed of 425kt (790m/h), a maximum range with six passengers of 1,800 nm (3,330km), and maximum take-off weight of 8,850kg (17,650lb).

Pilatus has secured 84 orders for the PC-24, equivalent to three years of production and is planning to reopen the order book following certification. PO3 will make its public debut in May at the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition in Geneva. The PC24 was unveiled at the industry gathering in 2013.

Source : Pilatus Aircraft/Pilatus Picture

 

Embraer Rolls Out E195-E2 its Largest Jet Aircraft

Embraer’s second E-Jet E2 variant, the E195-E2, was rolled out on March 7, 2017, marking the unveiling of the largest jet aircraft ever produced in Brazil.

According to CEO John Slattery, he believes the aircraft will be strongly considered as a replacement by mainline airlines flying the Boeing 737s and Airbus A319s and low-cost carriers(LCC) seeking a cost-efficient option.

“The first prototype E195-E2 will be used for aerodynamic and performance tests”, Slattery said. The aircraft’s first flight is officially scheduled for the second half of 2017, but rollout is occurring ahead of schedule. “I would not be surprised if the E-195-E2 does enter into flight testing in the first half of 2017,” Slattery said.

Source : Embraer/Embraer Picture

                                                         

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

Argentine ULCC Startup Flybondi to Launch with Boeing 737-800s


Argentine ultra-low-cost carrier, (ULCC) startup Flybondi, has selected the Boeing 737-800 as its launch aircraft and ready to begin negotiations for up to 50 737 MAX 200s.

Giving a March 15 update, Flybondi said it had chosen the 737-800 over the Airbus A320 and honed its launch schedule to September.

The Startup had previously announced a start date in the second half of 2017.

“We are convinced the Boeing 737-800 is the right aircraft to develop the ULCC model in Argentina. We are very pleased with the level of support that Boeing has provided us with.” Flybondi CEO Julian Cook said.

The 737-800s, configured with 189 seats, were selected for their low operating cost. Flybondi also finalized the details of entry into service support agreement with Boeing.

No numbers were specified for the 737-800 acquisition, but Flybondi previously announced plans to operate four aircraft this year, adding six every year after that, to hit 30 aircraft by year five. Cook also said Flybondi will start negotiations for an order of up to 50 Boeing 737MAX 200s very soon.

Flybondi attracted seed funding from a series of well know veterans, including Ryanair board member and ex-COO Michael Cawley, ex-Air Canada CEO Montie Brewer and British Airways City Flyer Express founder Robert Wright alongside a group of Argentinian investors.

Source : ATW

 Southwest Unveils First 737 Max Routes

Southwest Airlines has unveiled its first Boeing 737 Max routes, as it prepares to take delivery of the re-engined jet that it was the launch customer.

The Dallas-based carrier will operate the 737 Max from October, with the inaugural flight departing Dallas Love Field at 7:00 for Houston Hobby. It will then continue to San Antonio before returning to Dallas.

The flight routing is similar to Southwest’s first flight back on June 18, 1971, – except the airline operated the 737-200 then and flown to Houston Intercontinental instead of Hobby. Southwest, along with United Airlines, were the first to operate the 737-200. However, in the case of Southwest, it continued to operate the 737 in all its variants.

Southwest says it will launch nine 737 Max 8 aircraft into operations on October, followed by the tenth about a week later. It will end 2017 with 14 737 Max 8 aircraft in its fleet.

The carrier will retire its remaining 737-300s from service before the 737 Max enters operations.

Source : Flightglobal/Southwest/Southwest Picture

 

 ANA Unveils Special Livery for its First A380

All Nippon Airways (ANA) has unveiled the livery that will adorn its first Airbus A380.

The ‘ Flying Honu ‘ livery , by Tokyo resident Chihiro Masuoka, was picked from an open design competition. It features the Hawaiian green sea turtle, which the airline says is a sign of prosperity and good luck.

The Star Alliance carrier says that it is moving ahead with the interior design of its A380s, which will offer new passenger services when it starts operation on the Tokyo-Honolulu route from the spring of 2019.

ANA has three A380s on order, which are due for delivery in May, June and September 2019 according to Flight Fleets Analyzer.

Source : ANA/ANA Picture      

LATEST NEWS

  • International Airlines Group(IAG) launched its long anticipated low-cost, long-haul carrier on March 17, naming it LEVEL. 
  • CDB Aviation Lease Finance Aviation announced an order for 30 737 MAX 8 airplanes, valued at $3.3 billion at current list prices.
  • Iran Air receives its first new A330-200, the first of 45 A330 family order, which was placed on December 2016.

  • KAIR Airlines New South Korean low-cost carrier has placed a firm order for 8 Airbus A320s and is aiming to launch operations in 2018.
  • Azul Airlines Brazil’s largest operator of the Embraer operator of the current generation Embraer 195, will be the launch operator of the re-engined E195-E2.
  • Aeromexico agreed to lease a second 787-9 from Air Lease Corp. for delivery in June 2018.
  • BOC Aviation took delivery of its 200th Boeing aircraft, a 737-800 for Malaysia’s Malindo Air.
  • Air Lingus will lease seven Airbus A321neos with 97-ton maximum take-off weight from Air Lease Corp.(ALC), with deliveries starting in 2019.
  • GreenPoint Technologies has secured a contract from an unnamed customer for the completion of a Boeing Business JET 787-9. The contract marks the first 787-9 completion project for the Kirkland, Washington-based company.
  • Gulfstream sells a G550 to Beijing 999 the Chinese medical evacuation provider Beijing Red Cross Emergency Medical Center (Beijing 999)
  • BOC Aviation Singapore-headquartered lessor has placed an order for 13 Boeing 737 MAX 8s.

 

AIR CARGO

   Amazon Sends Cargo Started Operations to Lehigh Valley Airport 

Air Cargo traffic at an American airport once classed as an airfreight no-hoper, has since soared since Amazon’s new cargo airline Prime Air began operating flights out of Allentown, PA . (LVIA)

The significant increase in air cargo business resulted in handling of some 57,000 tons of cargo last year, dramatically raising the cargo status of the east coast airport.

The rise in volumes at LVIA is quite remarkable, given it was formerly dubbed as a non-hub by the Federal Aviation Administration.  It managed less than 0.5 percent of the annual passenger boardings of all commercial service in the USA.

Currently, Prime Air operates 40 freighters, including 767-300s, after entering into two separate leasing deals in 2016.  One with cargo lease firm Air Transport Services Group – the parent company of freight airlines ABX Air; the other with Air Transport International – and Atlas Air Holdings.

Atlas Air Worldwide will acquire an additional Boeing 767 passenger aircraft for freighter conversion as part of a contract with Amazon, bringing to 21 the number of aircraft earmarked for service with the online retailer.

Speaking on a full-year earnings call on February 23rd, Atlas chief executive William Flynn said the carrier has signed contracts with Boeing and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) to modify the 767s.

Source : Air Cargo Eye/Ed’s Research

 

MAINTENANCE, REPAIR AND OVERHAUL NEWS

GE CF6-80’s Engine MRO Outlook Strong for a Few Years

The CF6-80’s longevity offers an interesting MRO lessons. Two of the big questions in commercial aviation today are “How long will low fuel prices continue?” and “What effect will they have on the longevity of mature equipment?”.  Only OPEC can answer the first question, but an analysis of the General Electric CF6-80 engine’s situation can provide a great deal of insight into the second.

This is because the GE engine first entered service in 1982, and is still flying on a wide array of senior and mid-life aircraft types. The 52,500-63,500-lb.- thrust CF6-80C2, for instance, is certified for the Boeing 747, 767 and MD-11; as well as the Airbus A300 and A310. Meanwhile, the 67,500-72,000-lb thrust CF6-80E1 has powered current engine options of the Airbus A330 family since 1994.

After a steady decline, the CF6-80C2 fleet stabilized in 2016,and 2,410 CF6-80C2 engines are in service, according to Aviation Week’s 2017 Commercial Aviation Fleet and MRO Forecast.

Most of the CF6-80C2s are flying on Boeing 767 and 747-400 wide bodies, which might offer a dim prognosis because some airlines are phasing out those types. Yet Aviation Week’s forecast data tells a different story, with usage of the CF6-80C2 projected to hold firm at least a couple of years. Subsequently, a slow decline is predicted, with the global CF6-80C2 fleet forecast to shrink by 8% by 2021.

MTU Maintenance is the biggest player in the CF^-80C2 aftermarket behind the engine’s manufacturers,GE Aviation.The German company completed 80 shop visits in 2016,up from 60 in each of the two previous years,and it expects demand to remain at least as strong in 2017.

Source : MRO-Network.com

 

MRO Latest News

  • UTC Aerospace Systems was selected by Lufthansa Technik to provide its Aircraft Interface Device (AID).  Lufthansa German Airlines has initially ordered AID for its Airbus A320 family of aircraft.
  • Ameco  plans to expand its component/landing gear maintenance business at Beijing/Chengdu.
  • GE Aviation selected Nantgarw, Wales, as its MRO facility for the GE9X jet engine.
  • Icelandair signed a TrueChoice Transitions agreement with GE Aviation for its custom-ordered CF6-80C2 spare engine.  This agreement follows a TrueChoice Transition agreement between Icelandair and GE, signed last year for the maintenance of CF6-80C2 engines that power the airline’s four Boeing 767s.
  • AFI KLM E&M has signed an Airbus A320 component support contract with Cambodia Angkor Air.

                      

Researched and Compiled by : Ed Kaplanian

Commercial Aviation Advisor

Contact – ed@kaplanianreport.com

                       

Volume 4 Issue 3 March 2017

ON THE BOEING FRONT

Boeing Launches New Nacelle & Flight-Control  Surface Exchange Program                             

On February 8th, Boeing announced the launch of a new Nacelle and Flight-control Surface Exchange Program. It provides airlines an integrated and economical solution, while building on Boeing’s successful history of exchange programs.

Under the program, customers can exchange nacelle and flight-control surface parts that need repair or overhaul from a certified pool that Boeing maintains throughout its global network. This eliminates the need for customers to contract, schedule, manage and own or lease these parts.

Parts distributed through the program represent all Boeing models and are updated to the latest configurations, incorporating all applicable service bulletins and airworthiness directives.

Another benefit of an exchange is that customers only need to take an airplane out of service once, reducing maintenance needs. When a similar part is leased, the plane must be taken out of service for both removal and installation.

Boeing is a leader in providing 24/7 support and service to the global aviation industry. Boeing’s parts portfolio is the most complete in the industry, with total stock of over 400,000 part numbers and over 10,000 parts shipped daily.

Source : Boeing Commercial Services

                      

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT

A330neo First Flight Date is Still Not Set

Rolls-Royce is progressing with the assembly of the initial flight-test Trent 7000 engines for the Airbus A330neo, although a maiden flight date has yet to become clear.

The engine manufacturer, in its full-year financial presentation, gave the entry-into-service date for the aircraft as the first half of 2018.  TAP Portugal, the initial operator, has previously indicated that it expects to receive the first A330neo in the first quarter of that year.

Rolls-Royce has not clarified whether the difference in phrasing is indicative of a further slip to the schedule, but its use of “first half” for the entry-into-service timeframe is similar to that voiced by Airbus commercial aircraft chief Fabrice Bregier in January.

Bregier had mentioned that TAP planned services in “Spring 2018” and that the A330neo development effort was “compatible” with this.

Rolls Royce has already conducted ground tests of the power plant and says assembly of the first flight-test engines is continuing.

Chief Warren East stated, during a briefing on the company’s full-year results, that the Trent 1000-TEN for the Boeing 787 was on schedule for service entry in the second half of this year, as was the Trent XWB-97 engine on the Airbus A350-1000. As to the new A330neo with the Trent 7000 engine, that it is about six months behind.

The engine will not be installed on a testbed aircraft but fitted straight to an A330neo certification airframe.

Source : Airbus/Rolls-Royce/Picture Airbus           

        

REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

G500 & G600 Flight Test Campaigns Progress As G650/ER             Gets Chinese Approval                                                 

The flight-test campaigns for Gulfstream’s clean-sheet G500 and G600 are progressing well, with both models on course to meet their certification and entry-into-service targets.

The five aircraft in the G500 program have flown more than 2,000h across 500 flights, Gulfstream says. Customer deliveries of the large-cabin, long-range aircraft are scheduled to begin shortly after airworthiness certification, which is slated for the fourth quarter.

The larger and longer-range G600 is pegged for service entry about 12 months later. Since making its maiden sortie in December 2016, the first, and so far only, flight-test aircraft has accumulated more than 100h.  It will be joined in the next weeks by two additional prototypes.

Announced in 2014, the G500 and G600 designed with Gulfstream’s widest-ever cabin, Pratt & Whitney Canada PW800 engines, fly-by-wire controls and an industry-first application of active control sidesticks in commercial aircraft.

Meanwhile, Gulfstream has secured certification for its flagship G650 and G650ER from the Civil Administration of China (CAAC), allowing the US framer to start delivering B-registered versions of the ultra-long range business jets.

Source : Flightglobal/Gulfstream/Gulfstream Photo

                                                                       

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

JetBlue Introduces Special Embraer E190 Livery

JetBlue Airways has rolled out a special Embraer E190 livery and new tail fin design that will appear on multiple aircraft this year. The New York-based airline said is introducing the new paint schemes as it celebrates its 17th anniversary last month.

According to a JetBlue statement, the carrier “has a long tradition of adding unique, special liveries to its Airbus A320 fleet and that tradition is expanding to the E190 fleet.” The paint scheme showcases the so-called “bones” of the 100-seat aircraft.

“Drawing upon the styles of various aviation, nautical and space exploration vehicle cutaway diagrams, the Jet Blue design team created a mechanical x-ray of sorts infused with some JetBlue fun,” the carrier said in a statement.

Source : JetBlue/JetBlue Embraer E190

 

CFM International Bookings up 25% in 2016

CFM International booked orders for 2,677 engines in 2016, a 25.4% increase over 2,135 engines ordered in 2015.

Total value for CFM’s 2016 orders neared $36 billion at list prices, a 33.3% rise over 2015.

In 2016, CFM reported orders for 1,801 LEAP engines, including commitments and spares, up 28.7% from 1,399 orders of the engine type in 2015.Orders for CFM56 engines from Commercial, military and spare parts customers totaled 876, up 19% from 2015.

The Ohio-based manufacturer said it produced 1,665 CFM56 engines and 77 LEAP engines in 2016, with the Leap-1A making its entry into commercial service on an A320neo with Turkey’s Pegasus Airlines in August 2016.

CFM’s LEAP-1A is an engine option for Airbus A320neo family aircraft: the LEAP-1B is the sole engine behind Boeing’s 737 MAX aircraft: and the LEAP-1C is the sole Western engine for the COMAC C919.

To date, CFM is reporting more than 12,200 LEAP engine orders and commitments (excluding options), valued at over $170 billion at list prices.

Source : CFM International/Flightglobal

 

Air Lease Corp. 2016 Net Profit Up 48% to $375 million

Los Angeles-based commercial aircraft lessor Air Lease Corp.(ALC) posted a 2016 net profit of $374.9 million, up 48% from $253.4 million net income in 2015.  ALC’s total revenues for the year were $1.4 billion, up over $1.2 billion in 2015.

The company’s expenses totaled $838.8 million, up 1.1%; operating income was $580.2 million, up 47.7% over $393 million in 2015.

In 2016, ALC signed lease agreements for 122 aircraft with 39 customers, ending the year with a net book value of $12 billion in aircraft with a weighted average age of 3.8 years and weighted average lease term remaining of 6.9 years.

As of December 31, 2016, ALC’s fleet totaled 237 owned aircraft(three less than 2015), and 30 managed aircraft (up one from 2015).  During the year, ALC took delivery of 43 aircraft from its order book and sold 46 aircraft from its operating lease portfolio.

By the end of the year, ALC had sold all 19 of its remaining ATR 42/72-600 aircraft, plus 15 Embraer E190s and five E175s, to Danish regional lessor Nordic Aviation Capital(NAC) for $1.2 billion. The remaining five E175s will be sold to NAC during the first quarter of this year.

Source : ATW     

LATEST NEWS

  • Korean Air has taken delivery of its first Boeing 787-9, making it the first airline in the country to operate the type.

  • Qantas has unveiled the new premium economy seat that will fitted on its Boeing 787-9s, which it says offers more recline and width over its current product.

  • China Eastern Airlines will add four Boeing 777-300ERs and seven Airbus A330-300s to its fleet this year.

  • China Southern has agreed to lease five Boeing 787-9s from Air Lease Corp.(ALC), the Los Angeles -based Lessor said.
  • Boeing Rolls Out First 787-10 February 23rd was a momentus day for Boeing. It has rolled out its first 787-10 from the paint hanger at Boeing South Carolina. The Dreamliner has booked 1,207 from 67 customers around the world taking only 13 years to do it. Over 140.2 million have flown the aircraft and opened 120 routes.

  • Juneyao Airlines has finalized its order for five 787-9 Dreamliners valued at about $1.32 billion at current list prices.The order also includes options for five more 787-9s.

  • CFM International named Gael Meheust president and CEO, from Feb.1. The Ohio-based commercial engine manufacturer is co-owned by GE and Safran Aircraft Engines.
  • Singapore Airlines has announced its commitment to purchase 20 777-9s and 19 787-10 Dreamliners.
  • Airbus A380 two of Airbus’s A380 test aircraft are to be transferred to museums  along with two other testbeds including the first A320.

 

AIR CARGO

   Asia-Pacific Air Cargo Markets Start 2017 on Strong Footing

Preliminary January traffic figures from the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) showed strong traffic volumes in both international air passengers and air cargo markets. International air cargo demand, measured in freight ton kilometers (FTK), grew by 4.7 percent.  Offered freight capacity expanded by 3.8 percent, resulting in a 0.5 percentage-point rise in the international load factor to 59.4 percent for the month.

That said, January cargo traffic is an unreliable indicator of larger trends, the combined January/February results will be better indicative of underlying demand.

Andrew Herdman, AAPA’s director general said, ”The year started on an encouraging note for Asian carriers, with both international air passenger and cargo markets growing strongly, boosted by the timing of the lunar New Year holidays.”

Herdman also noted that the outlook for the rest of the year looks “broadly positive, against a backdrop of renewed optimism”.

Source : Air Cargo World

 

Lockheed Rolls out First LM-100J Super Hercules Commercial Freighter

On February 9, 2017, Lockheed Martin officially the world to the latest member of the C-130J Super Hercules family: the LM-100J commercial freighter.

Employees who designed and built the aircraft celebrated this new Super Hercules with a traditional “rollout” ceremony held at the Lockheed Martin Aeronautics facility located in Marietta, Ga. Team members walked the LM-100J out of the building that is the home to the Super Hercules production line. The  next stop for this milestone Super Hercules is the flightline, where it will prepare for its first flight this spring.

Lockheed Martin announced its intent to manufacture and market the LM-100J in February 2014. Lockheed Martin has filed for an FAA civil type certificate update and this first LM-100J will participate in flight test activity to support this process.

The LM-100J is the updated version of the L-100 Hercules, which was built by Lockheed Martin from 1964-1992.  More than 100 L-100s were delivered to both commercial and government operators, supporting cargo delivery requirements in almost every operating environment in the world. At the Farnborough Airshow in 2014, ASL Aviation Group signed a letter of Intent with Lockheed Martin to order up to 10 LM100J Super Hercules commercial freighters.

Source : Lockheed Martin/Lockheed Martin Photo

       

 

       MAINTENANCE, REPAIR, OVERHAUL

A European First For Icelandair

Icelandair has become the first airline in Europe to install and operate Aviation Partners Boeing’s Scimitar Blended Winglets (SBWs) on Boeing 757-200s.

Icelandair is retrofitting the SBWs to its 757-200s as an enhancement to the 757-200 blended winglets which are already installed on its aircraft.

The Carrier expects the new winglets to increase savings in block fuel, to reduce engine maintenance, to improve take-off performance and reduce engine emissions, as well as to provide other benefits, according to Aviation Partners Boeing (APB), which is the Seattle based joint venture of Aviation Partners Inc. and The Boeing Company.

Icelandair is now working on its fourth Scimitar Blended Winglet modification and plans to have a total of 17 aircraft in service with the new mods retrofitted before the 2017 summer season.

Source : MRO Network/Icelandair Photo

Safran Nacelles Establishes MRO Center of Excellence

Safran subsidiary, Safran Nacelles, has established an MRO Center of Excellence at its Pont-Audemer facility in the Normandy region of France. It will strengthen its expertise in and capabilities for maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) of complete nacelle systems and nacelle components.

The New Center of Excellence will be responsible for managing Safran Nacelles’ global network of MRO facilities. It will serve as the company’s operational reference for repair procedures and MRO industrialization for all of Safran Nacelles’ facilities.

The MRO Center of Excellence’s expertise will cover complete engine nacelle systems, including complex structural repairs, line replaceable units, engine sub-assemblies, outlet guide vanes and on-site support, according to Safran Nacelles.

Behind UTC Aerospace Systems, Safran Nacelles is the world’s second largest supplier of aircraft engine nacelles, boasting more than 17,000 nacelle systems in service, which accumulate more than 100,000 flight-hours each day.

Source : Avweek.com

 

MRO Short News

  • STS Repair and Modification was formed by STS Aviation Group and Cannon aviation to provide aircraft structural repair and modification services.
  • Lufthansa Technik and MTU Aero Engines finalized a previously announced deal to set up a joint venture for PW1000G(GTF) maintenance, repair and overhaul starting in 2020, at a yet-to-be announced location.
  • Magnetic MRO acquired an AirBaltic contract to provide Bombardier Q400/CS300 wheel and brake maintenance.

          

Researched and Compiled by : Ed Kaplanian

Commercial Aviation Advisor

Contact – ekaplanian@msn.com

Volume 4 Issue 1 January 2017 Kaplanian Report

ON THE BOEING FRONT

The Boeing 787-10 ZC001 in Final Body Join 

Boeing in early December began to assemble the first 787-10, the second stretch variant of the family, at its facility in Charleston, South Carolina.  The 787-10 has the potential to take a significant slice of the replacement market for the Airbus A330-300s and the 777-200s.  With 323 seats, and at the same time, give the twin jet program a strong push toward profitability.

So far, the 787-10 is coming together smoothly and ahead of schedule. Spurred on predominantly by Singapore Airlines in early 2013, Boeing has won orders and commitments for 154 aircraft from nine airlines and leasing companies.

The 787-10 is 18 feet longer than the 787-9; 10ft of that is made up of the midbody, which is extended to 114ft overall. As they are for all 787s, the midbody and aft-fuselage sections for the 787-10 are assembled in South Carolina.

Design work for the 787-10 stayed in Seattle, where the challenge was maximizing commonality with the 787-9. Designers targeted a goal of 90% commonality between the 787-9 and the -10, a big leap over the 50% achieved between the 787-8 and the 787-9.

The first aircraft is expected to make its maiden flight early this year. Following initial checkout, it will be ferried to Seattle along with the other test 787-10s for completion of the certification campaign. The first and third 787-10s will be powered by Rolls-Royce’s new Trent 1000 TEN engine, while the second will be powered by the competing GEnx1B. Flight tests of the TEN began on a 787 early in December, the initial 787-10 is scheduled to enter service with Singapore Airlines in mid-2018.

Source : Aviation week/Boeing/Boeing Picture

                     

ON THE AIRBUS FRONT

Airbus to Slow A380 Production in 2017 in Accord with Emirates

Airbus will put off a dozen deliveries of the A380 plane in the next two years following agreement with Emirates, its largest customer for the model, as demands continues to fade for the A380.

Handovers of six A380s a piece that were originally planned for 2017 and 2018 will be shifted to a year later following an agreement with Emirates and engine supplier Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc. The Toulouse, France-based plane maker said on Tuesday, December 27th, in an e-mailed statement.

Airbus still plans to deliver 12 A380s per year as of 2018, and will seek to accelerate cost savings to minimize the effects on the break- even target for 2017.

Airbus has already been reducing production of the A380, which costs $433 million at list prices, as demand for large airliners has dried up.  In the meantime, Emirates and Rolls-Royce reached a settlement earlier in December over the airline’s A380 engine performance and maintenance concerns.

Dubai-based Emirates is by far the biggest buyer and operator of the A380, with orders for more than 140 of the plane. The carrier recently switched to Rolls-Royce engines for its latest batch of A380s, after relying on General Electric Co,’s Engine Alliance venture for the four power-plants that propel the airliner.

Source : Bloomberg/Airbus

                   

REGIONAL/BUSINESS JETS

  Bombardier Global 7000 Takes to the Skies 

Bombardier Business Aircraft has successfully flown its new flagship business jet, the Global 7000.  Flight test vehicle 1(FTV1), C-GLBO (c/n70001), took off from the manufacturer’s Toronto Downsview facility on November 4, 2016.

It flew for 2 hrs 27 mins. During the maiden flight, the crew tested the basic system functionality of the jet and assessed its handling and flying qualities.

The pilots conducted a gradual climb to 20,000 ft and the aircraft reached a planned test speed of 240 kts.

All flight controls were exercised during the sortie and Bombardier reports that all systems and aircraft performed as expected. The flight signifies the start of the jet’s flight test program, ahead of scheduled entry into service in the second half of 2018.

Bombardier says the jet will offer a 7,400 nm(13,705km) range at Mach .85 carrying eight passengers.

Source : Bombardier/Photo Bombardier

Boeing Business Jets, GKN Aerospace Introduce Skyview Panoramic Window

Boeing Business Jets announced in early December that it will work with GKN Aerospace’s Fokker business to develop, produce, and offer support for the Skyview Panoramic Window. It is the largest window available on any passenger jet offered today.

The window will be available as a feature on BBJ, BBJ2, and all three members of the BBJ MAX family, including the new BBJ MAX 7 with scheduled entry-into service in 2018.

The Skyview Panoramic Window, measuring approximately 4.5 feet by 1.5 foot(1.4×0.5 m), is created by effectively joining three existing 737 windows together.  Situated aft of the wing with multiple potential locations based on the airplane type, it offers customers an unparalleled perspective of the world.

Source : Boeing Business Jets

OTHER AVIATION NEWS

Argentina’s Aerolineas to Buy 11 New Boeing 737 MAX Aircraft

State-run airline Aerolineas Argentinas said on December 19, 2016, that it will buy 11 new Boeing 737 MAX aircraft and nine 737-800 NG planes in a deal based on revising a sales contract signed by the previous government.

President Mauricio Macri took office a year ago to reduce government spending. The previous administration had signed a contract with Boeing for 20 737-800 NGs, but no payments or deliveries were made under the deal.

“Aerolineas will be the first operator in Latin America to have a 737 MAX, which is a new plane globally,” the airline’s finance chief Pablo Miedziak told Reuters after signing the new contract with Boeing’s vice president for sales in Latin America Van Rex Gallard.

Miedziak said the airline is increasing its capacity by replacing planes with a capacity of  128 seats for new ones that can seat 170 passengers.

Source : Reuters

 

COMAC C919 Starts Ground Taxi Tests

The COMAC C919 narrow body passenger jet moved under its own power for the first time on December 28, 2016, initiating the last series of tests before the C919’s maiden flight.

The low-speed taxi trials are being carried out from the company’s facility in Shanghai  Pudong International Airport. The China-made C919 is scheduled to make its first flight in the first half of 2017.

CFM International, the largest jet engine manufacturer worldwide is the exclusive engine supplier for the C919, the first C919 engines (CFM Leap 1C) last July but run for the initial time until November 9, 2016.

Shanghai-based China Eastern Airlines will become the first customer to take delivery of the C919.  So far COMAC has received 570 orders for the C919 from 23 customers, including Air China and China Southern Airlines.

Source : China Aviation Daily

 

LATEST NEWS

  • Yangtze River Airlines HNA subsidiary looks toward international expansion in this year. The Shanghai-based carrier plans to take delivery of two Boeing 787 aircraft for that specific use.
  • Air Tanzania has been revealed as the previously unidentified customer for a single 787-8 valued at $224.6 million at list prices.
  • Philippine Airlines has confirmed an order for five Bombardier Q400 turboprops, with purchase rights for an additional seven aircraft.
  • Qatar Airways is in talks with Airbus to convert its order for up to 80 A320neos to the larger A321neos.
  • Delta Airlines has cancelled its order for 18 787-8 aircraft, a commitment that it assumed from Northwest Airlines when the two merged in 2008.
  • Azur Air Russian charter carrier has taken delivery of its first 189-seat 737-800, which will be operated on routes to Spain and the United Arab Emirates this month.
  • Trujet South Indian regional carrier has taken delivery of its first ATR 72-600 turboprop, which is leased from Dubai Aerospace Enterprise. 
  • ANA has taken delivery of its first Airbus A320neo, ANA has six more A320neos on order, and 26 A321neos.
  • Gulfstream has kicked-off the certification campaign for its new G600 business jet, following first flight of the large-cabin, long-range twin on December 17, 2016.
  • Island Air the Honolulu-based airline will acquire three new Bombardier Q400 turboprops. The aircraft will have 78 seats and enter service early this year. 

 

AIR CARGO

Boeing Selects Evergreen Aviation Technologies for 767-300                                             Passenger-to Freighter Conversion

Boeing announced on December 13, 2016, that Evergreen Aviation Technologies Corp (EGAT) will perform passenger-to-freighter conversions for the 767-300 Boeing Converted Freighter(BCF) program.  Boeing received 27 firm orders from customers worldwide for the 767-300 BCF. 

The 767-300 BCF conversion entails the modification of a passenger airplane to the cargo configuration. Converted 767-300BCFs have about the same cargo capability as the 767-300 production freighter with approximately 52 metric tons, with structural payload at a range approximately 3,000 nautical miles (5,930 km) and 412,000 lbs (187,270 kg) maximum takeoff weight.  There are 24 pallet positions on the main deck.

Evergreen Aviation Technologies has successfully carried our complex airframe conversions that built up the fleet of Boeing Dreamlifters- converted 747 airplanes used to support the 787 program-since 2005, as well as a 747-400 Propulsion Test Platform for GE Aviation in 2014.

Source : Boeing/Boeing Photo

     

  Maintenance & Repair Organization News

ATSG Subsidiary Swoops on MRO and Conversion Firm Pemco

Aircraft conversion firm Pemco has been bought by Airborne Maintenance and Engineering Services, a subsidiary of Air Transport Services Group (ATSG).

ATSG, which runs an air cargo operation for Amazon through its ABX subsidiary, said the acquisition will allow for a number of strategic benefits by combining operational strengths, expanded capabilities and cost savings related to shared services between the companies.

Services will be offered from multiple locations, including Wilmington and Tampa for heavy maintenance and modifications, and Tampa, Central America and Asia for passenger-to-freighter conversions.

Additional service offerings of aircraft-on-ground field teams, line and turnaround maintenance, component repair and overhaul, engineering repair and design, plus extensive manufacturing and kitting capabilities will be extended from various locations.

ATSG President and chief executive Joe Here said : “Based on PEMCO’s existing domestic and international scale, this acquisition will expand access to maintenance service for customers of ATSG’s expanding fleet of Boeing 767 cargo aircraft.

Source : MRO News

 

Lufthansa Technik Extends Warehouse Capacities in the USA

Lufthansa Technik AG has now opened a new warehouse in the USA, close to the Fort Lauderdale airport in Florida. This represents a significant expansion of the site, ensuring stable supply for customers in this growing region into the future.

The Fort Lauderdale site serves a connecting point for North, Central and South America.  It was therefore chosen as the primary storage facility for the American market and central gateway for the extensive customer supply network in the region.

The state-of-the-art facility, in operation around the clock all year, and the seamlessly integrated transport network allow the company to even better fulfill the high quality expectations of its customers. Customers benefit from the personal contact and from the fact that their contact person is in the same time zone.

The New warehouse has the capacity for around 9,000 components. It also houses more than 10,000 items of consumables and expendables. Various models of aircraft can be supported from the facility.

The warehouse is operated by Lufthansa Technik Component Services(LTCS), making use of the logistic processes and  IT systems of Lufthansa Technik Logistik Services.

Source : Lufthansa Technik

                         

Researched and Compiled by : Ed Kaplanian

Commercial Aviation Advisor  

Contact – ekaplanian@msn.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 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