Wednesday, November 20th, 2019

Greater interest shown in the Boeing 737 MAX on day three of the Dubai Airshow

After two relatively quiet days for Boeing at the Dubai Airshow, the U.S. planemaker has announced that Kazakhstan flag-carrying airline Air Astana has signed a letter of intent for an order of 30 737 MAX8 jets for its low-cost subsidiary FlyAristan, while a further undisclosed carrier has signed a firm order for ten 737 MAX7s and ten 737 MAX10 jets. No indication has been given as to what discounts were obtained, though at book price the deals are worth approximately US$6 billion.

This is good news for Boeing considering the 737 MAX has been grounded since March and is unlikely to be cleared for flying until late in December or early in 2020. Discussing the Boeing order, Air Astana Chief Planning Officer Alma Aliguzhinova told reporters: "We are making flying affordable for the people of Kazakhstan," adding that he expects deliveries to commence in late 2021. Air Astana, which flies Airbus and Embraer jets in its main network, said it was confident in Boeing's ability to resolve the MAX problems and that it will likely hold 15 of the ordered jets directly and finance the remaining 15 jets through lease transactions. With regard to the letter of intent signed by IAG at the Paris Airshow for 200 737 MAX jets, this has yet to be finalized as the European holding company discusses the prospective fleet change with subsidiaries that currently use Airbus jets for their medium-haul routes.

In the meantime, there are still no signs that Dubai’s Emirates was ready to finalize a deal to purchase 40 787 Dreamliners. The Gulf carrier has indicated it wants to restructure a previous deal for the larger 777X jet owing to current delays on delivery. Not to be outdone on day three of the airshow, Airbus announced that Saudi budget carrier Flynas was looking to convert some, or all of its options to purchase 40 A320 narrow-body jets, while also revealing that Air Senegal has made a provisional order for eight of the smaller A220 narrow-body aircraft. easyJet has exercised options for 12 more A320neo aircraft.

Component Control

Boeing 787-10 to take to the skies with British Airways

British Airways will take delivery of its first brand new 787-10 Dreamliner in January 2020, with its first route being Atlanta in February next year.

This state-of-the-art, Boeing 787-10 aircraft has a carbon fibre fuselage which allows the pressure to be maintained at a lower level in the cabin. The internal cabin altitude is the equivalent of 6,000 ft, offering a better level of humidity, reducing the drying effect of the cabin air, so customers arrive feeling more refreshed. The aircraft is also more fuel efficient and quieter than its predecessors.

British Airways will take delivery of 12 787-10 Dreamliners, with six arriving in 2020.

easyJet to become first major airline to operate net-zero carbon flights

easyJet has announced that it will become the world’s first major airline to operate net-zero carbon flights across its whole network. The airline will achieve this goal by offsetting the carbon emissions from the fuel used for all of its flights, starting Novemer 19.

easyJet will undertake carbon offsetting through schemes accredited by two of the highest verification standards, Gold Standard and VCS. They will include forestry, renewable and community based projects.

Carbon offsetting is only an interim measure while new technologies are developed, so the airline will continue to support innovative technology, including the development of hybrid and electric planes, working with others across the industry to reinvent and de-carbonise aviation over the long-term. The aim will be for easyJet to reduce the amount of carbon offsetting undertaken as new technologies emerge.

As part of this goal, easyJet has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Airbus related to a joint research project on hybrid and electric aircraft. The MoU is an important step towards furthering the industry’s understanding of the operational and infrastructure opportunities and challenges of plug-in hybrid and full electric aircraft.

easyJet and Airbus will cooperate on three distinct work packages set to define the impacts and the
requirements necessary for the large-scale introduction of next generation sustainable aircraft on infrastructure and every-day commercial aircraft operations.

easyJet has been supporting Wright Electric over the last two years, which is aiming to produce an all-electric ‘easyJet sized’ plane which could be used for short haul flights. The airline is also working with Rolls Royce and Safran on new technologies to reduce the carbon footprint of flying.

easyJet will also aim to stimulate innovation in carbon reduction by supporting the development of technologies which will enable hybrid electric and electric planes and championing advanced carbon capture technologies. The carrier will look to use these technologies as well as sustainable aviation fuels (SAFs) as they become available and commercially viable.


AeroCentury sells one CRJ900 aircraft to ASI Aero

AeroCentury, an independent aircraft leasing company, has sold one Bombardier CRJ900 to Aeronautical Support International (ASI Aero), an aircraft and aircraft engine components supplier based in Boynton Beach, Florida, through its affiliate, Cloud Investment Partners. 

“The CRJ900 that we sold to ASI Aero is one of the four aircraft we repossessed from Adria Airways, the Slovenian flag carrier, shortly before it entered insolvency proceedings,” explained Michael Magnusson, President of AeroCentury.  “As it became apparent that Adria Airways was having financial difficulties, we commenced remarketing efforts for those CRJ aircraft,” Magnusson continued.  “This allowed us to expeditiously close this sale in little over a month after the aircraft’s return. We believe that the market for CRJ900s is healthy at the moment and are already exploring several lease and sale opportunities for the other three aircraft returned to us from Adria Airways.”

GECAS places orders for 32 Airbus aircraft

GECAS has entered into an agreement to purchase twenty A321XLR and twelve A330-900 aircraft from Airbus, with all 32 aircraft slated for delivery prior to the end of 2026.

With more than 150 medium-haul operators facing a significant replacement need— forecasted by Airbus to impact over 2,700 wide- and narrowbodies in the coming 20 years and most of these by 2030 — each of these new types from Airbus are ideally suited to the medium-haul market. Prior
to this order, the A330-900 aircraft, which does not compete with a GE-powered product, has garnered more than 270 orders for the type. As previously disclosed, GECAS’ fleet has been roughly 85% GE/CFM-powered for many years.

TP Aerospace

SAFAIR expands GE's TrueChoice Overhaul agreement for CFM56 engines

SAFAIR has extended and expanded its TrueChoiceTM Overhaul agreement with GE Aviation for the maintenance, repair and overhaul of its CFM56-7B engines that power its fleet of Boeing 737-800 aircraft. The new agreement is valued at more than US$70 million over the life of the agreement.

Tunisair Express takes delivery of first ATR 72-600

Regional aircraft manufacturer ATR has delivered the first of three ATR 72-600 aircraft to Tunisair Express. The Tunisian airline will use these aircraft to renew its regional fleet providing passengers with essential connectivity both domestically and internationally.

By upgrading to the ATR -600 series, the airline has also chosen to prioritise the comfort of its
passengers, introducing the latest generation 18” wide seats and the Cabinstream In-Flight Experience, allowing passengers to access a variety of content on their personal electronic devices.


Etihad Engineering, SCHOTT, jetlite and Lufthansa Technik to cooperate on Human-Centric Lighting development

SCHOTT, jetlite, Etihad Engineering and Lufthansa Technik have signed a ceremonial letter at the Dubai Airshow, expressing co-operation in further exploring and promoting a new “Human-centric Lighting” technology and bringing it to the market. The collaboration aims at combining SCHOTT’s expertise in cabin lighting systems, jetlite’s holistic and scientifically-proven solution for jetlag reduction, Etihad Engineering’s and Lufthansa Technik’s expertise for aircraft systems integration, design certification, and innovation capabilities. The result is an effective system for automated cabin lighting scenarios that will positively affect air travelers’ well-being on multi-timezone flights by reducing jet lag and headaches, and enabling higher concentration and energy levels.

The jointly developed system makes use of SCHOTT’s HelioJet® LED cabin illumination technology that enables a homogeneous light distribution as well as a high color stability throughout the cabin. It is combined with jetlite’s intelligent automation software integrated into Lufthansa Technik’s »nice« cabin lighting control system. The new lighting-pilot technology permanently calculates and executes the optimum illumination sequence for any flight route and phase or any desired lighting choreography, without the need for cabin crew to intervene. Etihad Engineering and Lufthansa
Technik bring decades-long experience with aircraft and systems integration, certification, and validation into the partnership, contributing to development capabilities in design and parts manufacturing (EASA Part 21-J and 21-G).

Republic of Ghana to order GEnx engines for Boeing 787-9 aircraft

The Republic of Ghana announced its intent to purchase GEnx-1B engines for its three Boeing 787 Dreamliners that will be used to re-launch an airline in the African nation. The engine order is valued at more than US$150 million list price.


Ken Sain named CEO of Panasonic Avionics

Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic Avionics), a world leader in inflight entertainment and communications (IFEC) solutions for the world’s foremost airlines, has named Ken Sain as chief executive officer.

He succeeds Hideo Nakano, who has served as Panasonic Avionics CEO since 2017 and as deputy CEO prior to that.  Nakano will now serve as Special Advisor for Panasonic Avionics. Sain, who most recently served as vice president of Digital Solutions and Analytics for Boeing Global Services and as CEO of Boeing subsidiary Jeppesen, will join Panasonic Avionics on December 2, 2019.

Hawker Pacific provides Royal Jordanian's Embraer fleet with landing gear services

Royal Jordanian Airlines has entrusted Hawker Pacific Aerospace, a subsidiary of Lufthansa Technik, with landing gear services for the airline's regional aircraft fleet of Embraer E-Jets.

The three-year contract encompasses landing gear overhauls for one Embraer 195 and two Embraer 175s. In addition, Hawker Pacific will support Royal Jordanian with landing gear spares on a loan- and exchange-basis. The first overhaul of the aircraft's landing gears in Hawker Pacific's Sun
Valley facility is scheduled for November 2019.

Lufthansa Technik already has a decades-long business relationship with Royal Jordanian, that in addition to the new contract emcompasses both landing gear services as well as a Total Component Support (TCS®) for the airline's Airbus A320 fleet.


NAC purchased and leased back one ATR 42-500 to Compagnie Aérienne Inter Régionale Express

Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC) has confirmed that it has purchased and immediately leased back one ATR 42-500, MSN 831, to Compagnie Aérienne Inter Régionale Express.

Compagnie Aérienne Inter Régionale
Express is a French airline company which operates two brands, in French Guiana
as Air Guyane and in Caribbean islands as Air Antilles. This aircraft will be operated by Air Antilles flying from Pointe a
Pitre, Guadeloupe, to other Caribbean destinations.

Boeing directors now subject of shareholder lawsuit concerning 737 MAX 8

While Boeing Co. is the subject of numerous claims from victims’ families over the fatal Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines crashes which both involved the now-grounded Boeing 737 MAX, a new lawsuit filed in Delaware - Kirby Family Partnership LP v. Dennis Muilenburg, 2019-0907, Delaware Chancery Court (Wilmington).

The lawsuit claims that Boeing Co. directors were careless in their oversight of the troubled 737 MAX 8 jet and that they failed to react promptly after the two crashes. It also claims the directors missed repeated red flags during development of the aircraft’s automated flight-control system, while also delaying investigation of potential design flaws after the first crash involving a Lion Air jet. The lawsuit alleges that in a rush to get the 737 MAX to market, Boeing failed to properly test the new flight-control system or train pilots adequately.

Beyond the consequent grounding of the 737 MAX 8 jet, the suit also claims the board’s actions hurt the company “through loss of credibility in the marketplace, a damaged reputation and billions in potential business costs and liability,” according to Kirby, which says it has owned Boeing shares since 2018.


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Dubai Airshow
November 17 - 21, 2019 – DWC, Dubai, UAE

EyeforTravel Revenue Optimization and Marketing Summit
November 26 - 27, 2019 – Hotel Novotel Amsterdam City, Amsterdam, NL

Manufacturing World
February 26 - 18, 2020 – Makuhari Messe, Chiba-city, Japan