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Thursday, April 21st, 2022

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Spirit Airlines to open Houston aircraft maintenance facility at George Bush Intercontinental Airport

Headquartered at Miramar in Florida, ultra-low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines has announced its intention to strengthen its ties with the Houston, Texas region with the creation of a new aircraft maintenance facility that will be located there at George Bush Intercontinental Airport.

The maintenance complex will comprise a large aircraft maintenance hangar, two aircraft bays and ramp space for up to four aircraft, plus offices and warehousing for the Technical Operations team of Spirit Airlines during the initial phase of operations. It is expected that the carrier will assemble a team of approximately 50 Houston-based team members to work at the new aircraft maintenance facility.

The location has been carefully chosen as it complements Spirit Airlines’ maintenance hub in Detroit and, as the carrier’s network expands, the maintenance facility will be located a short flight from several of Spirit Airlines’ busier stations.

"Maintaining our Spirit Fit Fleet® in top condition is a priority for us every day and we've picked the perfect additional location for our stellar Technical Operations team as they support our on-going growth," said John Bendoraitis, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Spirit Airlines.

"This will not only benefit passengers all over their network but will elevate the airport guest experience for those who fly out of Houston to the airline's multiple domestic and international destinations," said Director of Houston Airports Mario Diaz.

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Embraer delivers last modernised AF-1B fighter jet to the Brazilian Navy

Embraer has delivered the last modernised AF-1 fighter jet (AF-1B) to the Brazilian Navy. Under the AF-1 programme (the Navy designation for the McDonnell Douglas A-4 Skyhawk), seven subsonic fighter jets were modernised – five single-seater AF-1Bs and two two-seaters AF-1Cs.

The AF-1 is an intercept and attack aircraft operated from airfields or aircraft carriers as a vector for the fleet's air defence. The Brazilian Navy's modernised aircraft received new navigation, weapons, power generation, computers, tactical communication and sensor systems, including a state-of-the-art multi-mode radar and a new operating system. In addition to the modernisation, the revitalisation of the cell was carried out, increasing the aircraft’s useful life.

As part of the modernisation programme carried out by Embraer, a high-fidelity flight simulator was developed permitting the Brazilian Navy to carry out pilot training, thus increasing safety in its operations. Briefing and debriefing stations used in the training and proficiency of pilots were also provided to improve their use, to reduce costs and to bring greater effectiveness to mission planning and execution.

AFG sells Boeing 747-8JA to Boeing Company

AFG Aviation Ireland (AFG), a wholly owned subsidiary of Aircraft Finance Germany GmbH, has reported the sale of one Boeing 747-8JA bearing serial number 40065, to the Boeing Company. AFG ferried the aircraft on April 15, from Basel, Switzerland to Marana, Arizona. CEO Christian Nuehlen comments: “We are more than pleased that the aircraft has found such a good home at Boeing. I would like to thank both AFG’s team and the team at Boeing for their hard work and dedication to this project.”

“It was a pleasure to partner with AFG on this transaction,” said Thomas Hansen, vice president of asset management for Boeing Capital Corporation. “The AFG team are experienced and dedicated professionals and we look forward to continuing our successful relationship.”

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AvAir and Lufthansa Technik double down on aftermarket sales agreement

AvAir, the inventory solutions provider for the aviation aftermarket and Lufthansa Technik have signed an addendum to their long-term aftermarket sales agreement. This addendum includes a second large material takeover. The initial agreement between the two companies was reached in 2020, in which AvAir took over 9,000-line items from Lufthansa Technik’s worldwide material pools. The Arizona-based company has now acquired an additional 9,000 aircraft components.

This time, the agreement also includes as removed and unserviceable units in addition to serviceable and overhauled items. The agreement implies that Lufthansa Technik receives a share of the proceeds from resold components under a profit share agreement. The material is considered overstock and a majority of the parts come directly from the Lufthansa Technik material pool and aircraft teardowns. The sale significantly contributes to the optimisation of inventory at Lufthansa Technik’s warehouses in Germany, delivery of the components will commence immediately to AvAir facilities in Ireland and Chandler, Arizona, in the United States. Despite this major logistical endeavour for teams of Lufthansa Technik on both continents, the complete transfer of material is expected to be completed in the next 90 days.

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Finnair removes face mask requirement

Many countries are removing COVID-19-related restrictions due to the increasing vaccination coverage and the mild form of the recent virus variants. In line with this, Finnair is now lifting the requirement to wear a face mask on board all flights.  

As of April 25, customers and crew are no longer required to wear a face mask onboard Finnair flights, unless it is specifically required by the authorities of the destination or origin country. Those who wish to continue to wear a mask when travelling are naturally welcome to do so.

Many countries still require that masks are worn onboard flights to and from the destination. On such flights, both crew and customers are required to wear a face mask throughout the flight. Customers can check the list of countries requiring masks onboard on the Finnair.com travel updates page or check the local authorities’ web pages for details. Masks are not, for example, required on domestic flights and on flights to and from Scandinavia, whereas on flights to and from Asia and many European destinations masks are still required.

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Eve and Thales enter partnership to develop eVTOL aircraft

Eve UAM, an Embraer company, and Thales, a global technology leader providing solutions, services and products in the defence, aeronautics, space, transportation, digital identity and security markets, have teamed up to support the development of Eve’s electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft (eVTOL) in Brazil. The strategic partnership involves a series of joint studies over a twelve-months period, which started in January 2022, on the technical, economical and adaptable feasibility of a 100% electrically powered aircraft. Thales will also contribute with its expertise in developing avionics, electric, flight control, navigation, communication and connectivity systems.

“Thales is actively engaged in Urban Air Mobility emergence. We are particularly proud to take a new step in Brazil, joining Eve in a project that can be a game-changer for sustainable urban mobility worldwide,” said Yannick Assouad, Executive-Vice President, Avionics, Thales. “This industry is coming to stay and will bring many advantages to the country, particularly concerning the environment, due to the use of clean energy.”

Both Thales Technological Space Centre, in São José dos Campos and its recently opened Avionics Centre, in São Bernardo do Campo, will provide support to Eve’s and Embraer’s teams working on the project, which will also rely on Thales’ engineers from France, Canada and the United States.

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Marsh Brothers expand into Europe with Aviation Parts Services Partnership

Marsh Brothers Aviation, one of Canada's leading suppliers of advanced polymer bearings and seals to the general aviation sector, has signed an authorised distribution agreement with aps Aviation Parts Services (aps), a European sales and service distribution company.

Under the terms of the agreement, aps will market and sell to end-users and maintenance service providers all Marsh Brothers’ product lines to the EU general and regional aircraft market. aps is headquartered in Germany with facilities in Belgium and Serbia.

Marsh Brothers Aviation's first-ever launch in Europe aligns with its growth strategy to expand into the European aviation market. Until now, Marsh Brothers focused on the Canadian and U.S. markets. The company recently expanded its product lines to support Mooney, Cirrus, Cessna, King Air and Beech 1900 platforms, offering these aircraft owners the opportunity to reduce maintenance time and costs.

Since 2002, aps has supplied aircraft spare parts worldwide to the general aviation industry. The company specialises in the rapid procurement of high-quality spare parts and accessories including hard-to-find parts, rare aircraft types and discontinued aircraft. aps also offers services to repair and replace aircraft components.

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DAS welcomes Brian Goddard as new Sales Manager, Commercial/Regional Aviation Component Repairs

Dallas Aeronautical Services (DAS) has welcomed Brian Goddard as the new commercial/regional component repairs sales manager.

Goddard has been in the aviation industry for his entire career starting as an A&P, working previously in various roles with an array of MROs as well as GE, AirReady and Nordam.

“Brian has established strong industry relationships and has a proven track record of providing outstanding customer service and technical support which will benefit DAS and its customers.” said Mike Ward, Sales and Marketing Manager.

Dohop and Air Transat add three new carriers to connectair by Air Transat

Dohop partner Air Transat has announced the arrival of three new partner airlines to connectair by Air Transat. By connecting Air Transat to Azores Airlines, Loganair, and SKY express, passengers can now book and travel to more than 240 additional destinations.

Launched in November 2021, connectair by Air Transat is Dohop’s latest airline-owned virtual interline platform. Thanks to partnerships with other carriers such as easyJet, Vueling, Avianca and Pascan, the platform already offers a wide selection of connected journeys throughout Europe, North Africa, the Middle East and the Americas.

Passengers can book connecting flights across airline networks, including ancillaries, in a single booking process. Dohop services the connection in case of delays and disruptions, while airlines retain customer ownership.
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Tamar Jorssen
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Email: tamar.jorssen@avitrader.com
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Tamar