Wednesday, August 17, 2011
AviTrader Daily Aviation News
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May 22, 2013
Rolls-Royce has won an order from US leasing company CIT Aerospace for Trent XWB engines, to power ten Airbus A350 XWB aircraft and Trent 700 engines to power 13 Airbus A330 aircraft. The Trent XWB engines will power ten CIT A350 aircraft that were announced in January 2013 which were in addition to five A350 XWB aircraft already on order. The Trent XWB, specifically designed for the Airbus A350, is the fastest selling Trent engine ever, with more than 1,200 already sold. The engine variant that will power the A350-800 and -900 was awarded European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) type certification in February. The engine will power the first flight of the Airbus A350 XWB this year and the aircraft’s first in-service flight in 2014.
June 26, 2013
Certification testing is underway on the first Passport development engine at GE Aviation’s Peebles Testing Operation in Ohio. The engine began ground testing on June 24th and ran for more than three hours, reaching more than 18,000 lbs. of standard day sea-level takeoff thrust. Eight Passport engines and one core will be involved in the engine certification program. Flight testing on GE’s flying testbed is scheduled for 2014. Engine certification is expected in 2015. The Passport engine certification program follows three years of validation testing. GE Aviation has conducted validation tests on the fan blisk design, including two fan blade-out rig tests, ingestion tests and a fan aero rig test to demonstrate fan efficiency. Testing is complete on the third eCore demonstrator, and GE has accumulated more than 300 hours of testing on eCore demonstrators to date.
July 5, 2013
Firefly, Malaysia Airlines’ subsidiary carrier has taken ownership of its first brand-new ATR 72-600. The aircraft is the first of 20 latest generation firm ATRs, plus 16 options, ordered by Malaysia Airlines in December 2012. Firefly currently operates 12 ATR 72-500s, and with the arrival of the new ATR 72-600s will almost triple its exclusively ATR 72 aircraft fleet, taking the total to over 30 aircraft.
January 9, 2014
The A350 XWB development aircraft, MSN3, is in Bolivia where it will perform a series of tests at the high altitude airfields of Cochabamba and La Paz. Cochabamba is around 8,300 feet above sea level, and La Paz is one of the world’s highest airports at 13,300 feet. Operations at such high altitude airfields are particularly demanding on aircraft engines, Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) and systems. The aim of these trials is to demonstrate and validate the full functionality of engines, systems, materials as well as to assess the overall aircraft behaviour under these extreme conditions. A number of take-offs with all engines operating and with simulated engine failures are being performed at each of the airfields to collect data on engine operating characteristics and validate the aircraft take-off performance. The autopilot behaviour will also be evaluated during automatic landings and go-arounds. Since the A350 XWB’s first flight with MSN1 on June 14th 2013, over 800 flight test hours have been performed in close to 200 test flights by both MSN1 and MSN3. In total the A350 XWB flight test campaign will accumulate around 2,500 flight hours with the fleet of five aircraft. The rigorous flight testing will lead to the certification of the A350-900 by the European EASA and US FAA airworthiness authorities, prior to entry into service in Q4 2014.
January 29, 2014
Boeing Commercial Airplanes fourth-quarter revenue increased to $14.7bn and full-year revenue increased to a record $53bn on higher delivery volume. Fourth-quarter operating margin improved to 10.3% and full-year operating margin grew to 10.9% on the higher volume, favorable delivery mix and continued strong operating performance. During the quarter, the company launched the 777X with 259 orders and commitments. During the year, the 787 program completed first flight of the 787-9, successfully launched the 787-10 and began operating at a 10 per month production rate in final assembly. The 737 program delivered at a record production rate of 38 per month and has won nearly 1,800 firm orders for the 737 MAX since launch. In 2013, a record 648 commercial aircraft were delivered. In January 2014, the company reached an eight-year contract extension through 2024 with the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers District 751 (IAM). Commercial Airplanes booked 465 net orders during the quarter and 1,355 during the year. Backlog remains strong with 5,080 airplanes valued at a record $374 billion.
February 26, 2014
In 2013, Airbus achieved a new industry record of 1,619 gross commercial orders (FY 2012: 914 gross orders) with net orders of 1,503 aircraft (FY 2012: 833 net orders), excluding ATR. Gross orders comprised 1,253 A320 Family aircraft, 77 A330s, 239 A350 XWBs and 50 A380s. Fourth-quarter orders included Emirates Airline’s agreement for 50 A380s and Etihad Airways’ order for 50 A350 XWBs, 36 A320neos and one A330-200F. Airbus Military (now part of Airbus Defence and Space) received 17 net orders (FY 2012: 32 net orders). Airbus’ net order intake increased sharply to €202.3bn (FY 2012: €88.9bn). At the end of 2013, Airbus’ consolidated order book was valued at €647.4bn (year-end 2012: €525.5bn). The Airbus Commercial backlog was worth €627.1bn (year-end 2012: €505.3bn), comprising 5,559 Airbus aircraft (year-end 2012: 4,682 units) and representing over eight years of production. Airbus Military’s order book was worth €20.8bn (year-end 2012: €21.1bn). Airbus series aircraft deliveries increased to 626 aircraft (FY 2012: 588 aircraft, including three A330s without revenue recognition). Airbus Military delivered 31 aircraft (FY 2012: 29 aircraft). Airbus’ consolidated revenues increased seven percent to €42,012m (FY 2012: €39,273m), reflecting higher commercial and military aircraft deliveries. The Division’s consolidated EBIT rose to €1,710m (FY 2012: €1,252m). Airbus Commercial’s revenues rose to €39,889m (FY 2012: €37,624m). The Airbus Commercial reported EBIT was €1,595m (FY 2012: €1,147m) with the EBIT before one-off at €2,216m (FY 2012: €1,669m). Airbus Commercial’s EBIT before one-off benefitted from the improved operational performance, including favourable volume, some better pricing and an improvement in A380 losses. It also included higher A350 XWB programme support costs. Revenues at Airbus Military rose to €2,893m (FY 2012: €2,131m), driven by the A400M ramp-up and higher volumes from both light and medium transport planes and tankers. The EBIT at Airbus Military was €166m (FY 2012: €93m).
March 7, 2014
International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) has closed a new senior secured term loan of $1.5 billion. The loan will bear interest at LIBOR plus 275 basis points with a 0.75% LIBOR floor, is priced at 99.5% of par value, and will mature in 2021. The collateral used to support the transaction has an initial weighted average age of 9.1 years. It will be secured primarily by a first priority-perfected lien on the equity of certain of ILFC’s subsidiaries, which directly or indirectly own a pool of aircraft and related leases. ILFC plans to use the proceeds for general corporate purposes, including purchasing aircraft and supporting the company’s liquidity cushion.
March 25, 2014
Air France-KLM selected the GEnx-1B engine to power its 25 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 12 leased 787 aircraft. The total engine order is valued at more than $1.7bn. Air France-KLM and GE Aviation have also signed an agreement that will allow Air France-KLM to offer maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services for the GEnx-1B engine. Under this agreement, Air France-KLM will be licensed to perform maintenance and overhaul work on the GEnx-1B engine and GE will provide technical support and assistance on overhaul workscoping and component repair licenses, comprehensive material support and training.
April 17, 2014
Snecma (Safran) and Mecachrome signed the procurement contract for titanium-aluminide (TiAl) blades on the low-pressure turbine of the CFM International LEAP engine. Titanium aluminide (TiAl), an alloy of titanium and aluminum, is a new-generation material with outstanding qualities. Standing up to very high temperatures (750°C), it will cut the weight of a blade in half compared with the nickel-based alloys traditionally used in low-pressure turbines. As part of the new LEAP engine, this alloy will be used for the first time on a single-aisle commercial jet. It will contribute to the excellent performance of this new engine, which offers 15% lower fuel consumption than the best engines now in service. Snecma and Mecachrome developed a special manufacturing process for TiAI blades, and even created a complete production facility. Located at Mecachrome’s plant in Sablé-sur-Sarthe, the new production line will require an investment of €60m and create 150 specific jobs. Volume production will kick off in 2015, with a sharp ramp-up already in 2016, on the way to achieving the planned production rate of one blade every three minutes in 2019.
August 15, 2011
Comlux Aviation Services, based in Indianapolis, announced the promotion of Stephen Law to Maintenance Supervisor. Stephen Law has over 23 years of aviation sales experience and held prior positions of A&P Mechanic for AMR Combs, Project Supervisor for Bombardier Aerospace and Maintenance Supervisor for Indianapolis Jet Center.
August 15, 2011
Kellstrom Defense Aerospace, a division of Kellstrom Industries, has been awarded a contract by Northrop Grumman Corporation to support its prime contract with the United States Air Force (USAF) for Total System Support Responsibility (TSSR), providing operational support for the 17 E-8C Joint STARS aircraft at Robins Air Force Base, Ga. This award is for a five year duration and will include yearly renewals. For the last ten years, Kellstrom has supported the T-3 test bed aircraft for Northrop Grumman under a similar program from its base in Melbourne, FL.
August 15, 2011
Air Lease Corporation (ALC) have finalized an order for 14 Next-Generation 737-800s, with options for four more, and five 777-300ER (extended range) airplanes. It was previously posted on the Boeing Orders & Deliveries website, attributed to an unidentified customer. The order marks the completion of part of an agreement announced during the Paris Air Show in June. At list prices, the order is valued at $2.5 billion.
August 15, 2011
Defence and security company Saab AB’s acquisition of the U.S. Company Sensis Corporation (Sensis), announced on 29 June 2011, is completed. The acquisition creates a stronger foundation for growth in the North American market for the Saab Group. Requisite reviews by the U.S. Trade Commission according to the antitrust laws as well as by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) have been accomplished and the former Sensis Corporation has been renamed to Saab Sensis Corporation. The company will continue operations in the U.S. as a subsidiary within the Saab Group.
Saab Sensis has a workforce of approximately 600 employees and services a global base of more than 60 customers located in more than 35 countries across six continents. Its customers include 54 of the world’s 100 largest airports. The company generated revenues of about US$173 million in fiscal year July-June 2009/2010 ($158 million in 2008/2009) and EBIT of about $4.0 million in fiscal year July-June 2009/2010 ($7.2 in 2008/2009).The consideration amounted to approximately $150 million (MSEK 975) and an earn-out fee of maximum $40 million (about MSEK 260) by 2014 which is dependent on the achievement of various conditions. The maximum total consideration amounts to approximately0 $190 million (MSEK 1,235). Saab will use existing cash to fund the acquisition.
August 15, 2011
AAR CORP. has been awarded an eighteen month contract from Virgin America to provide maintenance and installation services for the airline’s growing fleet of Airbus 320 series aircraft. Through its Aircraft Services facility in Miami, Fla., AAR will perform comprehensive heavy maintenance “D-Checks” on Virgin America’s existing fleet of aircraft and install seating and advanced in-flight entertainment systems (IFEs) on their upcoming aircraft deliveries from Airbus. The Virgin America aircraft feature some of the most sophisticated and feature-rich IFEs in use today, providing passengers with in-flight access to satellite TV, movies, games, Internet and personal mood lighting.
August 15, 2011
Sean O’Connor has been appointed General Manager for SR Technics America. He assumed his new position on August 1, 2011. As General Manager, Sean will be responsible for driving the expansion of SR Technics’ business in the Americas.
August 16, 2011
At the International Aviation and Space Salon MAKS-2011 Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company and Indonesian regional carrier PT Sky Aviation signed the contract for the purchase of 12 Sukhoi Superjet 100/95B aircraft. At this years Le Bourget Airshow Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company and PT Sky Aviation signed the Heads of Agreement (HOA). The order is valued at $379.2 million at list prices. Deliveries are scheduled to begin in 2012.
August 16, 2011
FL Technics is expanding its capabilities by launching cabin modification and reconfiguration services on two brand new long-range Boeing 737-800 and cabin refurbishment service on Boeing 737-300. Two Boeing 737-800 aircraft reached the FL Technics hangar straight from the manufacturer and underwent full cabin interior refurbishment on the 4th of August. FL Technics specialists equipped the aircraft with brand new business and economic class seats, installed an internal audio system (IFE) for the business class facilities, revised emergency floor path lighting and performed all other cabin refurbishment services. All modification and reconfiguration work was carried out in the FL Technics-owned facilities in Vilnius.
August 16, 2011
Boeing announced at the Moscow Air Show that it has signed Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) to cooperate toward increasing the efficiency and capacity of leading Russian airports. Boeing will work with the Basel Aero Company, operator of Sochi Airport in Basel and with Moscow State University of Geodesy and Cartography. The Boeing Flight Services Air Traffic Management (ATM) group and Jeppesen, a Boeing subsidiary, will help the airports analyze and optimize their ground operational plans and introduce new procedures with the goal of improving the safety and efficiency of Russian airspace.
Airport and airspace capacity can be significantly increased using the existing capabilities of the systems on-board today’s commercial jetliners combined with air traffic management technologies. Upon completing definitive agreements, Boeing’s skilled specialists will work with the Russian organizations in modernization initiatives including increasing the capacity of the largest Russian airports and transforming the overall design of the air navigation system in Russia prior to the Sochi Winter Olympic Games.
August 16, 2011
SuperJet International (SJI) and Volga-Dnepr Technics, part of Russia’s Volga-Dnepr Group, have signed a Letter of Intent for the provision of maintenance services for the Sukhoi Superjet100 (SSJ100) aircraft. The agreement was signed during the International Aviation and Space Salon MAKS 2011 in Zhukovsky, Moscow Region. This LoI confirms the partnership established between SJI and Volga-Dnepr Technics that with its certified aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facility at Ulyanovsk Vostochny airport has joined the SJI’s MRO network of Authorized Service Centers to provide maintenance services to SSJ100 Operators. In Ulyanovsk, Volga-Dnepr Technics is establishing a state-of-the-art multi-functional MRO facility to meet current international operating standards also benefiting from its location within a Special Economic Port Zone.
August 16, 2011
The Qantas Group released that it would acquire up to 110 Airbus A320 aircraft, plus 194 purchase rights and options, to support fleet renewal and growth for the next 10 to 15 years. Smart investment in aircraft is part of the Qantas Group’s five-year plan to build a truly modern, customer-focused and competitive global airline business.
The Group has committed to order up to 110 A320s (106 confirmed from Airbus and four additional aircraft, either purchased or leased, subject to availability). These aircraft will facilitate capacity growth across Jetstar’s domestic and international operations, the launch of Jetstar Japan and the establishment of Qantas’ new premium Asia-focused airline – while the purchase rights and options provide the Group with significant flexibility to pursue further growth opportunities on favourable commercial terms.
In addition, as a result of the new strategy and network changes for Qantas international announced on August 16th, Qantas will defer the delivery of its final six Airbus A380s by up to six years, driving substantial capital cost savings. Qantas’ A380 fleet will reach 12 aircraft by the end of 2011 and 14 aircraft by mid-2013. The remaining six A380s will be delivered to coincide with the retirement of Qantas’ last six Boeing 747ER aircraft.
Qantas also announced that it will invest almost $400 million in new international lounges, new inflight entertainment and aircraft refurbishment to improve the customer experience.
August 16, 2011
The Qantas Group, Japan Airlines (JAL) and Mitsubishi Corporation announced the launch of Jetstar Japan – a new domestic airline that will bring more low airfares to customers in Japan. The Qantas Group, JAL and Mitsubishi Corporation will each hold 1/3 share in the new company (voting-rights-basis). Jetstar Japan will commence domestic operations by the end of 2012 and expects to fly from Tokyo (Narita) and Osaka (Kansai International), with other destinations under consideration including Sapporo, Fukuoka, and Okinawa. Jetstar Japan also plans to ultimately offer short haul international services to key Asian cities making travel more accessible and appealing to millions more people. The airline will launch with an initial fleet of three new Airbus A320 aircraft, configured for 180 customers in a single class, growing to 24 aircraft within its first few years. Total capitalization commitment for the new airline is up to JPY 12 billion.
Jetstar Japan was officially launched in Tokyo on August 16th by the President of Japan Airlines, Mr. Masaru Onishi, Executive Vice President & Group CEO, Industrial Finance, Logistics & Development Group Mitsubishi Corporation, Mr. Hideshi Takeuchi, and Jetstar Group Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Bruce Buchanan.
August 16, 2011
Airbus, Goodrich Corporation and VSMPO-AVISMA Corporation, the Russian titanium manufacturer, have signed a long-term agreement for the supply of titanium forgings used for the manufacturing of the A350-1000’s main landing gears. The contract will cover supply until 2020. Goodrich is to develop and provide the main landing gear, based on its experience in incorporating the latest technologies and materials, especially VSMPO’s high-strength titanium alloy. VSMPO has been awarded 100% share in the titanium forgings supplies. VSMPO-AVISMA Corporation will potentially also machine the related titanium forging in the future in order to develop a vertically integrated titanium supply chain, starting from raw materials to finished products.
August 16, 2011
Sigma Labs received a fourth contract from Messier-Bugatti-Dowty (MBD) to apply Sigma Labs’ In-Process Quality Assurance (IPQA) software to certain critical aspects of MBD’s landing gear manufacturing. This recent contract from MBD’s Canadian division follows three previous contracts from MBD’s UK Division to further introduce our IPQA to specifically address MBD’s next-generation manufacturing needs.