SpaceX trumps Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin as all-civilian crew orbit Earth

Falcon 9 ©SpaceX

Elon Musk’s SpaceX has successfully sent the first-ever all-civilian crew into orbit onboard the Crew Dragon Capsule which blasted off from Florida at 8.30 p.m. local time on Wednesday atop a SpaceX two-stage Falcon 9 rocket ship. The flight, estimated to cost US$200 million for the astronauts, will last three days while the capsule orbits the Earth at an altitude of 363 miles (585km), which is appreciably higher than the Hubble Telescope or the International Space Station. The capsule will orbit the Earth once every 90 minutes, travelling at a speed of 17,000 miles per hour (27,360 kph) or approximately Read more

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Rolls-Royce developing revolutionary digital system to improve U.S. Air Force air refueling efficiency

Jet Refueling ©Rolls-Royce

Rolls-Royce North America has been awarded a U.S. Transportation Command contract for the demonstration and continued development of a revolutionary new software system that will maximize efficiency in managing air refueling assets, improving mission availability and reducing cost for the U.S. Air Force. The Rolls-Royce Air Refueling Optimization and Planning System, or AROPS, is part of the new suite of digital services known as TwinAlytix® from Rolls-Royce Defense. TwinAlytix features the benefits of digital twins and digital analytics to improve customer services through advanced, secure software applications. The AROPS software package contract, valued at US$800,000, is intended to increase air Read more

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Collins Aerospace continues to advance actuation systems for Tempest

©BAE Systems

Collins Aerospace continues to make progress on actuation capabilities for the U.K.’s Tempest program. Under a contract with BAE Systems, Collins will develop a number of demonstration components as part of continuing technology de-risking work on the program. Collins will support the program from its Actuation Systems headquarters in Wolverhampton, U.K. Since announcing it had been selected to provide actuation systems for Tempest in 2020, Collins has begun producing components in preparation for testing later in the year. “Our systems will help protect the Tempest’s aggressive program schedule and cost targets, to help ensure the continued success and timely development Read more

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Leonardo and Northrop Grumman join forces on future rotorcraft UAS opportunities

Leonardo and Northrop Grumman have announced their intention to jointly pursue opportunities in the Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) Uncrewed Aerial Systems (UAS) domain. Drawing on Leonardo’s expertise in rotorcraft and Northrop Grumman’s capabilities in advanced aeronautics and next generation autonomous uncrewed aerial systems, the companies will focus on jointly addressing global opportunities in the VTOL UAS market. The companies will consider collaboration on air vehicle design, system architectures, payload optimisation and integration within next generation battlespace architectures, with a focus on customer requirements and mission-based Concepts of Operations.   The agreement is the latest development in a successful long-term Read more

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ATR and Braathens Regional Airlines partner with Neste to accelerate 100% SAF certification


As part of its commitment to meet the challenges of decarbonisation of the aviation industry, Swedish airline Braathens Regional Airlines (BRA), turboprop manufacturer ATR and Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) producer Neste will partner to achieve the collective aim of accelerating the certification of 100% SAF of ATR aircraft to fly with 100% Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel™ – a key pillar of the industry’s decarbonisation strategy, which has an immediate impact in reducing CO2 emissions. The companies aim to show a demonstration flight in 2022, with one of Braathens Regional Airlines’ ATR aircraft flying with 100% SAF in one engine Read more

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Boeing appoints Ziad Ojakli to head government operations

The Boeing Company has named Ziad S. Ojakli as the company’s executive vice president of government operations effective October 1, 2021. In this role, Ojakli will lead Boeing’s public policy efforts, serve as chief lobbyist for the global enterprise, and oversee Boeing Global Engagement, the company’s global philanthropic organization. He will report to Boeing President and CEO David Calhoun and will serve on the company’s Executive Council. In this role, Ojakli succeeds Marc Allen, Boeing’s Chief Strategy Officer, who has served as interim executive vice president of Government Operations since this past June. Most recently, Ojakli served as the managing Read more

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Eurowings opens base in Sweden


Eurowings is further developing its European network to Scandinavia with the opening of its new location in Stockholm. The popular German airline is offering new services in Scandinavia and will initially station five Airbus A320 aircraft in Stockholm by March 2022. This will be the eleventh Eurowings base of operations in Europe and the fifth outside its home market of Germany after Palma de Mallorca, Prague, Pristina, and Salzburg. For the first time, the Lufthansa Group value carrier will offer attractive direct connections from Scandinavia to business and vacation destinations throughout Europe. With its increased presence in the Nordics, Eurowings Read more

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Phoenix Police Department to upgrade fleet with five new H125 helicopters

Phoenix Police H125 Helicopter ©Airbus Helicopters

The Phoenix Police Department has signed a new order to upgrade its airborne law enforcement helicopter fleet with five new H125 helicopters. Deliveries are expected to begin next year. “We spent a lot of time analyzing which platform would best fit all of our operational needs as we began to renew our fleet, and the H125 met all of our requirements,” said Paul Apolinar, chief pilot at Phoenix Police Department. “Our responsibility is to protect and serve the Phoenix community, and these aircraft will allow us not only to protect from the skies, but to perform rescues in remote locations Read more

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China’s first COMAC C919 enters final assembly

C919 aircraft from COMAC ©AirTeamImages

China’s aviation regulators have confirmed that the country’s first narrow-body jet, the COMAC C919 which is scheduled for delivery to launch customer China Eastern Airlines by the year’s end is now entering final assembly. The Commercial Aircraft Corp of China (COMAC) hopes to obtain type certification for the jet by the end of 2021. According to Reuters news agency, The C919 program’s certification board met in Shanghai on September 10 and reviewed COMAC reports on batch production of the jet. The board also approved proposals to adjust the current plans for obtaining the aircraft’s production certificate, which is required for Read more

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Air New Zealand and Airbus to research future of hydrogen-powered aircraft in Aotearoa


Air New Zealand and aircraft manufacturer Airbus have announced a joint initiative to research how hydrogen-powered aircraft could assist the airline with reaching its goal of net zero emissions by 2050. Under the MoU, Air New Zealand will analyze the impact hydrogen aircraft may have on its network, operations and infrastructure, while Airbus will provide hydrogen aircraft performance requirements and ground operations characteristics to support Air New Zealand to develop its decarbonization roadmap. Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran says the MoU is an exciting step towards understanding how hydrogen-powered aircraft could become a reality in New Zealand. “This agreement brings us a step closer to Read more

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