Friday, May 17th, 2019

Lilium unveils on-demand all-electric jet-engine taxi after successful maiden flight

Munich, Germany-based Lilium has unveiled its latest all-electric jet-powered five-seat taxi which has the capability and range to enable it to fly up to 300km in just 60 minutes with zero emissions. The Lilium Jet has been developed as part of a revolutionary on-demand air taxi service. The prototype was shown off for the first time on May 16 after its successful maiden flight at its Munich headquarters at 8.03 local time, May 4, 2019.

Commenting on the successful first flight, Leandro Bigarella, Head of Flight Test, said: “While a maiden flight is always a moment of truth for a business, the Lilium Jet performed exactly as expected and responded well to our inputs. Our flight test program will now continue with increasingly complex maneuvers as we look towards our next big goal of achieving transition flight, which is when the aircraft moves seamlessly from vertical to horizontal flight.”

The new, larger prototype now has five seats as opposed to the original two, which will make it more cost effective to operate. There is no need for a pilot as the aircraft is operated remotely from
the ground. According to Lithium: “At the push of a button, passengers will be able to use the Lilium app to locate their nearest landing pad and plan their journey with ease. Choosing from a network of pads across cities and regions, passengers will enjoy journeys that are comparable in price with a taxi, yet four times faster.”

Unlike the majority of Lilium’s drone-style competitors, the Lilium Jet has a fixed-wing design and the propulsion system comprises 36 individual all-electric jet engines, which aside from being
ultra-efficient, are extremely quiet and avoid the sound characteristics associated with standard commercial jet engines. In addition, part of the Lilium Jet’s success where range is concerned is based on the fact that drone-based aircraft consume much of their energy keeping an aircraft in the air, the Lilium Jet can rely on the lift generated by the fixed wing to do this, meaning it will require less than ten percent of its maximum 2000 horsepower during cruise flight.


Air Canada enters into agreement to purchase all outstanding Transat A.T. shares

Air Canada has entered into an exclusive agreement with Transat A.T. (Transat) regarding the proposed purchase by Air Canada of all issued and outstanding shares of Transat and its combination with Air Canada. The proposed transaction, valued at approximately CA$520 million or CA$13.00 per share of Transat (on a fully-diluted basis), will create a Montreal-based global travel services company in leisure, tourism and travel distribution operating across Canada and internationally. Air Canada has all the necessary funding required to complete the transaction which is accordingly not subject to financing conditions.

The transaction remains subject to the finalization of definitive agreements, confirmatory due diligence, regulatory and shareholder approvals and other closing conditions usual in this type of transaction.

Pegasus Universal to debut new ‘vertical take-off’ business jet concept

Pegasus Universal Aerospace from South Africa is making its debut at EBACE 2019 (May 20 to 23) to showcase the pioneering work it has achieved with Pegasus One, its revolutionary Vertical-Business-Jet VBJ™. Founding Chairman and visionary Dr Reza Mia is showing a two-by-two metre model of the ground-breaking design, which combines the convenience of helicopters with the benefits of jet travel.

The all-composite airframe Pegasus One is targeted for certification and deliveries in five to seven years’ time from its Pretoria, SA facility, where it has engaged an engineering partner who will provide the engineers and designers.

In offering Pegasus One, Pegasus Universal Aerospace is pledging to bring speed, comfort and style to travellers looking for transportation between busy urban airports, small and unpaved landing
areas, yachts and regular helipads, amongst others.

Its jet design has the possibility of landing and taking off vertically in the same locations as a helicopter, but it can travel further, propelled like a jet, more quickly, presenting a unique offering for owners /operators.

Pegasus is targeting a 4,400 km range from runway take-off or 2,124 km in VTOL with a planned cruise speed of 796 km per hour. The aircraft will carry six to eight seats with power provided by two 2,300 shp (specific horsepower) turboshaft engines.

SR Technics

SIA Group posts lower profit for full year 2018/19

The SIA Group has reported a solid operating profit of S$1,067 million for the 2018/19 financial year amid a challenging market environment, with Transformation initiatives contributing to a record revenue performance.

Although a decline from last year’s operating profit of S$1,549 million (S$482 million lower or -31.1%), the Group’s underlying performance was strong against the backdrop of a S$1 billion increase (+25.1%) in fuel cost due largely to a 21.6% increase in fuel prices, and the absence of one-off revenue items recorded last year (-S$243 million). Flown revenue growth was up S$829 million, with passenger flown revenue improving S$784 million (+6.4%), lifted by traffic growth of 8.5%, on a 6.4% increase in capacity.

Group net profit for the financial year was $683 million, $619 million or 47.5% lower year-on-year. The reduction was primarily due to the lower operating profit (-$482 million), in addition to higher non-operating costs.

Aviation industry players collaborate on first regional aviation ‘Perfect Flight’ in Sweden

On May 16, a number of companies from across the aviation sector have risen to the challenge of turning a typical weekday service from Halmstad City airport (HAD/ESMT) to Stockholm Bromma airport (BMA/ESSB) into the ‘Perfect Flight’.

This is the first time that every element in the flight management process on a regional flight has been optimised to keep carbon emissions to a minimum and achieve the ‘Perfect Flight’ - in Sweden, a country that is aiming to be carbon neutral by 2045. A full flight of seventy two
passengers, including international media, were on board the Braathens Regional Airlines ATR 72-600 turboprop, the regional aircraft with the best environmental credentials, which took one hour to reach its destination.

According to ATR, the ATR 72-600 has an environmental advantage, in that it produces 40% fewer carbon emissions per trip compared with regional jets, saving 4,000 tonnes of carbon emissions per aircraft per year. ATRs can also take off and land where other aircraft cannot ensuring accessibility to all airfields, including those that are the most challenging. This helps connect more communities and provides more opportunities for people, wherever they live.

With the electrification of commercial aircraft thought to be decades away, advances in aircraft efficiency and the use of sustainable aviation fuel are likely to play a significant role in supporting the aviation industry to meet its ambitious target of reducing carbon emissions to half 2005
levels by 2050.

The Perfect Flight was powered by sustainable aviation fuel supplied by Air BP and produced by Neste. The fuel supplied will produce up to 80% fewer emissions over its life-cycle compared with conventional jet fuel and is produced from non-palm renewable and sustainable raw materials. In addition, Air BP’s operations at Halmstad City airport are one of their over 250 locations that have been certified as carbon neutral since 2016.

Following the flight, a responsible aviation seminar was held at Stockholm Bromma airport where the crew shared the results of how the ‘Perfect Flight’ had been achieved. A host of experts shared their views including Peter Larsson - CEO of Sweden’s Regional Airports, Jonas Bergman -
Mayor of Halmstad, Tom Anderson - ATR Senior Vice President, Programs and Customer Services, Anna Soltorp - Head of Sustainability, BRA and Tom Parsons, Air BP Commercial Development Manager, Low Carbon, and Andreas Teir, Neste's Vice President in Renewable Transportation, Nordics.


Alcoa and United Steelworkers union extend negotiations on labor agreement for five U.S. locations

Alcoa Corporation, a global leader in bauxite, alumina, and aluminum products, has agreed to extend the existing labor contract with the United Steelworkers to reach a new multi-year labor agreement covering approximately 1,700 active employees at five U.S. locations. The Company and the union have agreed to recognize the existing contract, which was set to expire on May 15, 2019, so negotiations can continue. A new deadline has not been set.

Employees represented by the United Steelworkers will continue to work under the terms of the extended contract at the five sites: Warrick Operations in Indiana; Massena Operations in New York; Gum Springs in Arkansas; Wenatchee Works in Washington and Point Comfort in Texas.

Most of those represented by the United Steelworkers work at Warrick Operations’ aluminum smelter and rolling mill and at the Massena Operations smelter. The Point Comfort alumina refinery and the Wenatchee Works aluminum smelter are both fully curtailed.

HOP! selects Turbonycoil 600 for its fleet of Embraer, CRJ and ATR

HOP!, Air France regional subsidiary, has selected Turbonycoil® 600, a synthetic standard turbine oil, for use in its mixed fleet.

HOP!’s current fleet consists of 13 Embraer 170 and 10 Embraer 190 powered by GE- CF34 engines, 13 Embraer 145 powered by Rolls-Royce AE3007A, 11 CRJ 700 and 14 CRJ 1000 also powered by GE- CF34 engines, and 5 ATR-45 and 7 ATR-72 powered by P&WC 120 family engines.

Approved against demanding specifications, including SAE AS 5780 SPC Class and MIL-PRF-23699 STD Class, Turbonycoil® 600 has received certification for use by all major engine manufacturers. It has logged more than 30 years of experience in jet engines of military and commercial aircraft.


Rotable Repairs completes relocation of new wheel and brake facility

Wheel and brake MRO services provider Rotable Repairs, has completed the move into the new 49,000 ft² wheel and brake facility in Essex, United Kingdom.

With the CAA’s oversight, the phased transition went without a hitch or without impacting production. The company is now set to take triple its capacity, strategically planned the wheel and brake facility now houses a flowed and intuitive production line, new spring testers, wheel greasers, nitrogen system, inflation cages, automatic wheel inflation and new spray shop/oven eight times the size of their original. This equipment complements the company's existing build up rigs and torque loader which all adds to the workshop’s ability to process volume.

Already with a healthy worldwide customer base, the support of the wheel and brake
manufacturers and substantial investment in material by Desser for pooling and consignments the maintenance at Rotable Repairs is set and ready to go.

With Watts Aviation having an additional 40,000 ft² of tyre storage and with both companies supporting all platforms from general aviation, corporate and commercial Rotable Repairs can claim to be a true aviation wheel and brake specialist based on diversity and scope. Training and Technology have also seen investment as the management team feel it’s important that an influx of new staff should see benefit from training and from its experience gained over time.

AviaAM Financial Leasing China adds Emirates to client portfolio

AviaAM Leasing, a global aviation holding company engaged in tailored aircraft leasing and trading services, has announced that its joint venture with the Henan Civil Aviation Development and Investment Company (HNCA) – AviaAM Financial Leasing China – has recently acquired one more Boeing 777-300ER. The aircraft equipped with GE90-115BG03 engines joined the fleet with a lease agreement attached to the current lessee – with the world’s largest international airline – Emirates.


Finnair starts codeshare cooperation with Juneyao Air

Finnair and Shanghai-based Juneyao Air have agreed on a new codeshare cooperation on the route operated by Juneyao Air and Finnair between Helsinki and Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG), as well as on selected Juneyao routes in China and selected Finnair routes in Finland.

The new codeshare agreement adds eight new destinations to Finnair’s network in China. From June 28, 2019 onwards Finnair customers can connect with Juneyao Air from Shanghai to Harbin, Shenyang, Dalian, Qingdao, Xi´an, Chongqing, Kunming, Xiamen and Fuzhou. In addition, the Finnair code will be added on Juneyao Air routes between Nanjing and Xi´an, Chongqing and Zhangjiajie. At the same time, Juneyao Air code will be added to Finnair´s route between Shanghai and Helsinki, and to Finnair’s domestic routes from Helsinki to Ivalo, Rovaniemi, Kemi, Kuopio and Oulu. The Finnish Lapland has become a popular destination for Chinese tourists.

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ap&m Europe 2019 - The Global MRO Procurement Expo
June 4 - 6, 2019 – Maritim Hotel Frankfurt and Messe Frankfurt, Frankfurt, Germany

Managing Technical Aspects of a Leased Asset & Maintenance Reserves Seminar Training Seminar
June 11 - 12, 2019 – Novotel Barcelona City Hotel, Barcelona, Spain

Paris Air Show 2019
June 17 - 23, 2019 – Le Bourget, Paris, France