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Tuesday, August 17th, 2021

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ADAC Luftrettung takes delivery of first two five-bladed H145s

ADAC Luftrettung, one of Europe’s biggest Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS) operators, has taken delivery of its first two five-bladed H145s. Furthermore, the German HEMS operator will upgrade its current fleet of 14 four-bladed H145s to the five-bladed rotor system.

The new version of Airbus’ H145 light twin-engine helicopter was unveiled at Heli-Expo 2019 in Atlanta. This latest upgrade adds a new, innovative five-bladed rotor to the multi-mission H145, increasing the useful load of the helicopter by 150 kg. The simplicity of the new bearingless main rotor design will also ease maintenance operations, further improving the benchmark serviceability and reliability of the H145, while improving ride comfort for both passengers and crew. The helicopter’s high-mounted tail boom and wide opening clam-shell doors facilitate access to the H145’s spacious cabin.

Powered by two Safran Arriel 2E engines, the H145 is equipped with full authority digital engine control (FADEC) and the Helionix digital avionics suite. It includes a high performance four-axis autopilot, increasing safety and reducing pilot workload. Its particularly low acoustic footprint makes the H145 the quietest helicopter in its class.

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Alaska Airlines continues fleet optimization with order of 12 additional Boeing 737-9 aircraft

 Alaska Airlines is accelerating its fleet growth by exercising options early on 12 Boeing 737-9 aircraft. The option aircraft are now firm commitments for 2023 and 2024. This additional commitment brings Alaska's total firm 737-9 order to 93 aircraft, five of which are currently in service.

Alaska announced a restructured agreement with Boeing in December 2020 to acquire 68 737-9 aircraft between 2021 to 2024, with options for another 52 deliveries between 2023 and 2026. This year, the airline has exercised 25 of the options, including 13 planes in May. As part of this transaction, Alaska will add 25 options to backfill the ones that have been exercised.

Alaska's 737-9s are configured to carry 178 guests with 16 First Class seats and 24 Premium Class seats. Alaska is the newest member of the oneworld global alliance. With oneworld and its additional airline partners, guests can fly to as many as 1,000 destinations around the world.

APOC chooses Miami for new warehouse facility in the U.S.

Alongside the recent announcement that APOC is trebling the size of its European facility to meet the expansion of its narrow-body inventory and consignment program, the company has just opened a new stock hub in Miami. This is the second part of its on-going strategic plan to expand its global footprint, and it follows the launch of its Singapore-base last November. 

APOC will be looking closely at developments in Miami and strengthening its sales team. “Additional warehouses will be considered as part of our initiative in North America,” said Karim Grinate, Vice President - Operations. “But for now, our focus is on Miami. Our stock is ready to go in SV/RP/OH and MOD conditions.”

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MRO Insider promotes Clovis Martins to Director of Sales, South America

MRO Insider has promoted Clovis Martins, formerly an Account Executive, to Director of Sales for South America. Martins has been working with the MRO Insider team since October of 2020, when he joined as an Account Executive managing Brazil. As South American traffic on the website increased, Martins’ territory expanded into the entire South American region.

Lindsay Nixon, Director of Operations, stated, “Clovis has done an incredible job in his role as account executive and this Director title is well deserved. He consistently goes above and beyond to assist both aircraft operators and service providers in getting registered, quoting, and communicating within the app. He has also taken the lead on marketing for our Latin America and South American teams, producing quality content and working tirelessly to grow our network.”

C&L Aviation Group completes first Saab 340B+ cargo conversion

C&L Aviation Services, a C&L Aviation Group company, has completed a cargo conversion on a Saab 340B+ at the company’s Maine-based MRO facility. This is the very first B+ model that has been converted for cargo operations. The operator, which has taken possession of this aircraft, has signed an agreement with C&L to complete an additional five conversions in 2021 and 2022.

For the conversion, C&L utilized an EASA- and FAA-approved conversion kit provided by Sweden-based Täby Air Maintenance’s (TAM’s), C&L’s partner in conversions since the two companies signed an agreement in 2018.

“We have been pleased with the way this first B+ model project has come together”, said C&L CEO Chris
Kilgour. The Saab 340B+ models are aircraft with production serial numbers from 340-360 to 340-459. With low
acquisition costs, and a maximum cargo volume of 1,280 cu ft, and a maximum payload of 9,325 lbs., the Saab
340B+ is an ideal aircraft for cargo operation.

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German government to offload total investment in Lufthansa by 2023

The German government has announced its intention to immediately sell of 25% of its stake in Lufthansa, the country’s flag-carrying airline, with the intention of divesting itself of the total investment by 2023.

The original €300 million investment came from Germany’s Economic Stabilization Fund (WSF) which was set up in March 2020 to aid struggling major German companies in an attempt to save jobs. The total bailout package was €9 million, €5.7 billion of which was a silent capital contribution by the state and a €300 million share package, along with a €3 billion loan from state-owned bank KfW which, in June 2020, effectively saved the struggling carrier from bankruptcy.

The move comes as part of a joint decision for Lufthansa to regain financial independence as soon as possible, especially in light of the carrier halving its losses in 2021 compared to the same period in 2020, mainly as a result of over 30,000 job cuts and an easing of travel restrictions. Lufthansa is also looking to pare back its fleet of aircraft from 800 to 650 by 2023. (€1.00 = US$1.18 at time of publication.)

BBAM and EFW sign agreement for Airbus A320/A321P2F conversions

Aircraft leasing company BBAM Limited Partnership (BBAM) and Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW), a joint venture of
ST Engineering and Airbus, have signed an agreement for Airbus A320/A321 Passenger-to-Freighter (P2F) conversions including options. The new orders by BBAM bring the total number of its A320/A321P2F conversions to 20, with the conversions to be carried out by EFW through 2025. The agreement comes with the option to add new conversion slots every year starting in 2026.

“With this latest order, BBAM is now the largest aircraft lessor for the A320/A321P2F program, and one of the top P2F customers of EFW,” said Andreas Sperl, Chief Executive Officer of EFW. “The order volume by BBAM translates into a full conversion line with a minimum of five slots per year, with many of the conversions to be carried out at the airframe facility of our parent company, ST Engineering, in the U.S. When combined with top-notch conversion standards, our A321P2F solution offers unique benefits for air freight activities, including best-in-class economics, reduced noise, lower carbon footprint, real-time health monitoring and the highest level in reliability.”

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Startup Aerit awarded thumbs-up from Transportstyrelsen to conduct drone delivery

Aerit, the sustainable drone delivery startup based in Stockholm, Sweden, has received operational authorization from Transportstyrelsen, Sweden’s national transportation agency, to pilot last-mile drone delivery in Sweden.

Aerit’s operational authorization is made possible by the Specific Operations Risk Assessment (SORA) process provided by the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) that came into effect in January, 2021.

“Drone delivery will soon be a part of everyday life, improving sustainable access to goods and services regardless of time, location, or personal ability. Transportstyrelsen has been an outstanding resource for the development of our drone platform, Nimbi, and procedures to ensure the safety and robustness of our operations. We look forward to working with them on our path to an LUC," said Aerit CEO and Co-founder, Alexander Perrien.

An LUC, or light UAS operator certificate, enables drone operators to self-authorize operations across the European Union without applying for further operational authorization.

Nimbi is capable of autonomous pick-up and delivery of up to 4kg of goods and requires no additional infrastructure for senders or receivers.

Aerit is a sustainable drone delivery startup based in Stockholm, Sweden, and part of KTH Innovation, The Innovation Growhouse Stockholm, and the European Institute of Innovation and Technology Urban Mobility Accelerator.
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Tamar Jorssen
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Email: tamar.jorssen@avitrader.com
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Tamar