Tuesday, December 3rd, 2019

16 Airbus staff fired over alleged industrial espionage

It has been revealed that Airbus has dismissed 16 of its staff, without notice, after a comprehensive investigation into what has been described as involvement in industrial espionage concerning military contracts for the German Armed forces (the Bundeswehr).

The European aerospace giant is a major supplier of the Bundeswehr through the regular awarding of contracts to provide new airplanes and helicopters, as well as performing retrofitting services for existing equipment. In September this year Airbus advised German authorities of certain “irregularities” relating to the handling of sensitive military documentation back in the autumn of 2018.

The whole matter came to light when one airbus employee questioned the company’s legal and compliance department, as well as his supervisors, whether he should have been given access to a confidential document he had just received. Following this incident, an audit of some 1.5 million documents took place along with numerous staff interviews. Initially some 90 Airbus employees fell under suspicion for either illegally obtaining or possessing confidential documents, including some data on the Bundeswehr’s military contracts, such as those on communication systems for the troops.

Eventually, employees of the Munich-based Program Line Communications, Intelligence and Security (CIS) ended up being suspected of “misappropriation” and “abuse” of some customer documents. The Bundeswehr has confirmed it was aware of the situation and that it has taken a disciplinary measure against an unnamed person within the Armed Forces.


C&L Aerospace partners with Electromech Technologies

C&L Aerospace has partnered with Electromech Technologies, to serve as a provider for the company’s product offerings including blowers, motors, valves, and actuators for many aircraft types including Beechjet, King Air, Hawker, Premier, Learjet, Beech1900, Pilatus, and Cessna.

This partnership, which includes over 70 different line items, will bring significant cost savings to operators via volume pricing to OEM quality items that are available for immediate exchange.

In addition to providing the current Electromech offerings, C&L is working with Electromech to increase repair capabilities on items currently in the market to improve design, quality, and reduce lead times. These additional repair capabilities are being looked at on a per-part basis for aircraft in both the corporate and regional markets.


Virgin Galactic places Main Oxidiser Tank into its next spaceship

Virgin Galactic has completed a major milestone in the build of the next spaceship in its fleet. The team has placed the Main Oxidiser Tank (MOT) into the fuselage - moving this vehicle a step closer to beginning its flight test program.

The MOT forms part of the structure of the vehicle, connecting the forward and aft part of the spaceship. It also holds the oxidiser for the rocket motor which powers the spaceship to space. The Virgin Galactic rocket motor is a hybrid system which uses a solid fuel along with a liquid oxidiser and holds the record of being the most powerful hybrid rocket motor to be used in crewed flight. During a spaceflight, the oxidiser in the MOT allows the solid fuel to burn.

“To ignite the rocket motor and burn the fuel an oxidiser is needed,” explains Jose Stevens, Chief Engineer, Propulsion, at The Spaceship Company. “On Earth, most fuel burns using the plentiful supply of oxygen found in the atmosphere, but at very high altitudes and in space, the lack of oxygen means we have to bring an oxidiser along with us to allow the rocket motor fuel to burn and generate the required thrust.”

During the most recent Virgin Galactic spaceflight, the rocket motor burned for a duration of 60 seconds and created enough energy to propel the spaceship, VSS Unity, into space at almost three times the speed of sound.


Kellstrom Aerospace completes acquisition of Airbus A320 for teardown

Kellstrom Aerospace has acquired an Airbus A320-232, MSN 1648, for teardown. The 1994 A320 aircraft was acquired from Castlelake L.P. The airframe is currently undergoing disassembly at ECube’s facility in Wales, U.K.

This project will support Kellstrom Aerospace’s unique and innovative lifecycle solutions by supporting both Kellstrom Aerospace Asset Management division with additional short to mid-term lease assets and the aftermarket supply business.

Air Corsica takes delivery of first A320neo aircraft

Air Corsica, the airline company based on the Island of Corsica, has taken delivery of its first of two Airbus A320neo aircraft on lease from ICBC Leasing. With this delivery, the airline becomes the first French A320neo operator.

The highly-fuel-efficient single-aisle aircraft will help reduce Air Corsica’s operating costs. The airline’s A320neo is powered by CFM International LEAP-1A engines and is configured in a single-class cabin
layout, seating 186 passengers. The two Air Corsica A320neo aircraft will replace the older aircraft
in its fleet and will operate on the airline’s main domestic and European networks. Air Corsica is currently operating a fleet of six A320 aircraft.


DAE’s AIS reaches milestone in third party aircraft under management

Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) has reached a significant milestone in the growth of its managed aircraft portfolio, with current aircraft under management plus mandates to source and manage portfolios for third party investor customers reaching US$3.5 billion.

Since announcing the DAE Aircraft Investor Services (AIS) product in January 2018, DAE has grown its managed fleet to over US$2.5 billion today, managing four aircraft ABS securitizations as well as aircraft for several investor partners. Following the latest portfolio sale agreement announced in October, DAE’s managed fleet has grown to 75 aircraft. DAE will continue to build its managed fleet as it fulfills existing mandates from investor customers, growing the managed fleet to US$3.5 billion and well over 125 aircraft in the coming months.

DAE manages its aircraft for third parties using the full capability of its global and active platform but also offers investors an investor-focused service product in the form of its AIS team which provides investors with a single point of contact dedicated to championing their interests within the wider DAE platform.


FLYdocs appoints CTIO to lead innovation efforts

Aviation software company, FLYdocs, has announced another step forward in its investment towards a digital technology-enabled future with the appointment of Carl Davis as the company’s new Chief Technology Innovation Officer (CTIO).

Davis brings more than 10 years of experience as a Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and was recently nominated for the Digital Innovation Award 2019 by The Federation of Small Businesses.

His previous roles include the digitisation of leasing and lending platforms, delivering data-driven process automation and upscaling analytics teams. Additionally, he ran the risk and fraud programme at Santander Bank, was CTO of Bibby Financial Services (Verus360 division) and CTO for analytics company DC-Storm (a Rakuten acquisition).


Airbus A319neo with Pratt & Whitney engines receives type certification

Airbus has received EASA type certification for the A319neo with Pratt & Whitney PW1100G engines, the aircraft manufacturer has announced.

The CFM-Leap engine variant has already been certified. Now the A319 and the A320 and A321 in the neo-versions are certified with both engine variants.

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