737 MAX software upgrade to be tested in simulator by new FAA chief

New Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) chief Stephen Dickson is heading to Seattle this week to visit Boeing and fly in a Boeing 737 simulator. The simulator will incorporate Boeing’s latest software‘fix’ which will receive input from both angle-of-attack sensors in the 737 MAX’s MCAS anti-stall system. However, this is not part of any certification process which will be required by Boeing before the beleaguered aircraft can once again take to the skies. Neither the FAA nor Boeing have yet given any clear timeline for the likelihood of such an event. According to Reuters news agency, Boeing has said it planned Read more

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Virgin Galactic announces major milestone in manufacture of next spaceship

©Virgin Galactic

Virgin Galactic released that it has mated the fuselage and cabin of its next spaceship to the completed wing assembly. In addition, the two tail booms have been mated to the spaceship’s rear feather flap assembly. The completion of these two milestones brings assembly of the next SpaceShipTwo, planned to enter service after VSS Unity, a major step forward. With these milestones, the part fabrication of the wing, fuselage, cabin, nose and feather flap primary structures is now complete for the second commercial spaceship. In addition, the majority of systems integration for the wing is complete, as well as the Read more

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AAR wins parts supply contract with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Aero Engines

AAR has signed its largest commercial deal in Japan to date, a multimillion dollar parts supply agreement with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Aero Engines. AAR will begin work immediately as the parts supplier for MHIAEL’s PW4000 engine maintenance with international commercial airlines. AAR will supply parts for MHIAEL’s demand of PW4000 94-inch fan engines used in thousands of commercial aircraft and will also have the capability to provide solutions from original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), including Unison and Eaton, for engine technological platforms. This announcement follows AAR’s recent completion of its certification from the Japanese Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) allowing the company Read more

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Bombardier delivers first of three Global 6000 business jets to Luftwaffe fleet

Global 6000 ©Bombardier

Bombardier has delivered the first of three Global 6000 business jets destined for use by the Luftwaffe, Germany’s air force. The Luftwaffe, a longtime Bombardier aircraft operator, will use the Global 6000 business jets to fulfill political and parliamentary transport requirements. Powered by Rolls-Royce BR710 engines, developed and manufactured by Rolls-Royce Deutschland in Dahlewitz, Germany, the Global 6000 aircraft has enough range for non-stop flights between continents, which is ideal for political and parliamentary transport requirements.

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Boeing and Safran to invest in Electric Power Systems

Boeing and Safran have announced a joint investment in Electric Power Systems (EPS), a company offering a suite of safe, certifiable and lightweight energy storage products that provide high-quality power for aerospace and other markets. The joint investment will help EPS develop a highly automated industrial base capable of producing aviation-grade energy storage systems at an unprecedented scale. The investment will also support the advancement of technologies to further reduce the costs of battery systems for electric airplanes. Boeing HorizonX Ventures and Safran Corporate Ventures jointly invested in EPS during this Series A funding round. EPS is the second advanced Read more

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ST Engineering acquires Satcom Anti-Jamming capabilities

Singapore Technologies Engineering has released that its U.S. subsidiary iDirect Government has acquired 100% ownership in Glowlink Communications Technology. This acquisition was carried out by way of a merger through a newly-incorporated special purpose vehicle, Intrepid Merger Sub and Glowlink, with Glowlink being the surviving entity. The aggregate purchase consideration was US$20 million on a cash-free and debt-free basis plus employment based retention payment of up to US$5 million subject to fulfilment of certain conditions.

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NR Investments highlights plans for Chisinau International Airport

©Chisinau International Airport, Moldova's international gateway

NR Investments, has recently acquired the controlling interest in the operation of Chisinau International Airport.  On September 17, NRI reiterated its commitment to direct a significant percentage of this year’s pledged funding towards a new runway and to further enhance its modern terminal to create a world-class airport. Concession holder Avia Invest needs to fund approximately €72 million in capital expenditure by the end of this year.  A further €83.9 million will be required when passenger numbers surpass €3.2 million per annum. Total investment (under the concession agreement) will amount to €242 million, a significant sum to support and grow Read more

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Austrian Airlines using Donecle’s automated inspection drone

drone inspection on Austrian Airlines' aircraft ©Donecle

Donecle has signed on Austrian Airlines, member of the Lufthansa Group, for its automated drone inspection solution. Donecle is excited to partner with Austrian Airlines to help the airline optimize their maintenance process by reducing time of aircraft inspection while increasing reliability, safety and traceability of airframe checks. Donecle not only provides an automated drone which scans the complete external surface of the aircraft, but also delivers analysis software which assists the inspector to visualize and detect defects on the images, evaluate paint quality or check regulatory markings. All images are stored on a secure cloud platform to build a Read more

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FAA’s 737 MAX certification process to be heavily criticized by JATR

A soon-to-be-finished report produced by the Joint Authorities Technical Review (JATR) has been reported by the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) as criticizing the U.S. approval process for Boeing’s 737 MAX jet. It is understood that the panel, which includes air-safety regulators from Canada, China, Indonesia, the UAE, the EU, Brazil and the U.S., will call out the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for what it says is a lack of clarity and transparency in the way it delegated authority to Boeing to evaluate certain flight-control features. In addition, the FAA appeared to pay insufficient attention to a number of essential Read more

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Air Belgium renews contract with Rusada

Air Belgium A340 ©Rusada

Air Belgium has signed a multi-year contract extension for Rusada’s MRO and Flight Operations software, ENVISION. Air Belgium operates a mixture of scheduled and ACMI services using a fleet of Airbus A340’s. Its scheduled flights serve the Caribbean islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique, while its ACMI customers include British Airways, Air France and LOT Polish Airlines. The airline initially signed up for ENVISION in September 2016, and after a successful initial term has elected to renew its agreement with Rusada for a further 3 years. The carrier uses ENVISION’s Fleet Management module for the continuing airworthiness management of its aircraft.

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