17.08.2008
FLUG REVUE

2008-08-18 - News in briefNews in Brief

Kurzmeldungen<br /> During the attempt to break the around the world speed record in an<br /> AgustaWestland Grand helicopter – pilots<br /> Scott Kasprowicz and Steve Sheik have set a new speed record on the<br /> first leg of their trip from New York City to London. This record<br /> setting flight covered 3,449 nautical miles and took the crew 40 hours,<br /> 41 minutes breaking the current record by over 35 hours.

The record of the flight will be submitted to the National Aeronautical Association for ratification. The pilots entered Russia on Sunday, the most challenging portion of their record attempt - dubbed the "Grand Adventure". They anticipate crossing the continent in 3.5 days and presently are on schedule to enter the United States through Nome, Alaska. They will travel through almost every state before landing back in New York next week.
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Lufthansa is expanding the services it offers to customers flying to Brazil and launching code share flights in partnership with the Brazilian carrier TAM. From 18 August, Lufthansa and TAM passengers will be able to book any of the flights operated jointly by either carrier between Frankfurt or Munich and São Paulo. Customers will then have a choice of 21 codeshare flights per week between Germany and Brazil. In addition, both carriers will offer connecting flights to their respective domestic destinations on a codeshare basis. Lufthansa passengers booked on flights to São Paulo will thus be able to travel seamlessly to a further four destinations in Brazil. Special transfer counters have been installed at São Paulo airport by TAM to make changing easier. Since February 2008, members of both airline's frequent flyer programmes – "Miles & More" and "Fidelidade" – have also been able to redeem miles with the partner airline and book award flights with either carrier.
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Boeing announced that it is ready to use a new "pulse line" process for assembling satellites in El Segundo, Calif. The new process is expected to shorten the time needed to build a space vehicle. The first satellites to be manufactured on the pulse line will be the Global Positioning System (GPS) IIF satellites Boeing is building for the U.S. Air Force. All Boeing's satellite production lines will adopt the new process over time. "With this new process, we are reducing the travel distance of a space vehicle from 12,000 feet to 10,000 feet," said John Duddy, director of GPS programs for Boeing. "We are really excited about this new build process for space vehicles and its impressive results, and our Air Force customer is pleased to have the GPS spacecraft used for this new process." The new process will move parts through 13 pulse positions. New work cells, new tooling, standard work-planning packages and Lean manufacturing processes will reduce the total build time per satellite and increase the number of vehicles moving through the line at one time. The line is intended to eliminate rework, allowing parts to flow continuously and smoothly through the process.
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The U.S. Government Accountability Office's decision to deny the protest of the U.S. Navy's Broad Area Maritime Surveillance Unmanned Aircraft System (BAMS UAS) source selection allows efforts to begin under Northrop Grumman Corporation's prime contract. The GAO's ruling underscores that the Navy conducted a fair and open competition to choose a provider for the service's newest UAS for intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance missions.
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Northrop Grumman has been awarded a contract to upgrade an E-2C airborne early warning and control aircraft for the Egypt E-2C Foreign Military Sales Program. The contract was awarded by the U.S. Navy. Under this $38 million contract, the aircraft will be refurbished and upgraded to the Hawkeye 2000 (HE2K) configuration to include upgrades to the radar, mission computer, tactical mission system displays and navigation system. This aircraft modification work will be performed at Northrop Grumman's St. Augustine Manufacturing Center (SAMC) facility in Florida while the engineering work will be conducted in Bethpage, N.Y.
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Boeing has successfully completed the first ground test of the entire weapon system integrated aboard the Advanced Tactical Laser (ATL) aircraft, achieving a key milestone in the ATL Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration program. During the test Aug. 7 at Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., the ATL aircraft, a C-130H, fired its high-energy chemical laser through its beam control system. The beam control system acquired a ground target and guided the laser beam to the target, as directed by ATL's battle management system. The laser passes through a rotating turret on the aircraft's belly. "By firing the laser through the beam control system for the first time, the ATL team has begun to demonstrate the functionality of the entire weapon system integrated aboard the aircraft," said Scott Fancher, vice president and general manager of Boeing Missile Defense Systems. "This is a major step toward providing the ultra-precision engagement capability that the warfighter needs to dramatically reduce collateral damage."
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Boeing Integrated Defense Systems (IDS) and Boeing Commercial Airplanes (BCA) employees gathered today in Renton, Wash., to celebrate the completion of final assembly on the first P-8A Poseidon for the U.S. Navy and its move to preflight work. IDS and BCA are building the P-8A, a military derivative of the 737-800, on a third final assembly production line in Renton. The third line takes advantage of the proven efficiencies, manufacturing processes and performance of the highly reliable Next-Generation 737. IDS will now focus on calibrating the flight-test instrumentation onboard the aircraft before moving it to Boeing Field in Seattle early next year for systems integration and additional testing.
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Goodrich and Rolls-Royce announced that they have signed a Letter of Intent proposing the formation of a joint venture company, which would develop and supply engine controls for Rolls-Royce aero engines. If the proposed joint venture goes ahead, it would enable the two companies to integrate their engine controls activity more closely. It would combine Goodrich's existing UK-based engine controls design and manufacturing business and Rolls-Royce's expertise in the integration of controls into the engine. Goodrich would retain the aftermarket products and services business associated with the joint venture's products. Under the proposals, each of the contributing companies would own 50 per cent of the joint venture company. Both companies will begin discussions with employee representatives on proposed timescales for consultation.
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Singapore Airlines has launched new all-Business Class services from Los Angeles to Singapore with the departure of SQ37 from LAX at 9:15PM on Sunday, August 10th. This is the second all-Business Class route Singapore Airlines offers from North America, bringing the reinvented product to the West Coast after the strong performance of its initial launch in New York (Newark) on May 15, 2008. The newly reconfigured Airbus A340-500 replaces the two-class, 181-seat configuration with 100 of the Airline's new award-winning Business Class seats. Singapore Airlines is the first to operate an all-Business Class service on the transpacific route. Each leather-upholstered Business Class seat measures 30 inches (76 cm) in width, almost 50 percent wider than most products in this class. Providing customers with more personal space and privacy, the seats are arranged in a 4-abreast, 1-2-1, layout, with every seat having direct access to the aisle. When it is time to sleep, the new Business Class seat converts into a fully-flat bed.
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Bell Helicopter announced a major expansion during ground-breaking ceremonies at its Military Aircraft Assembly Center located at Amarillo's Rick Husband International Airport.  In preparation for a ramp-up in production of both the H-1 helicopter program and the Bell Boeing V-22, an additional 176,000 sq. ft. of floor space will be constructed.  This brings the total size of the Bell facility to 1,095,000 sq. ft. under roof. The expansion, scheduled for completion in July 2009, is primarily driven by the Bell Boeing V-22 Multi-Year Production contract signed in March 2008.  This contract provides 167 aircraft to the US Marine Corps and Air Force Special Operations Command over a five year period, with an annual option for adding up to five additional aircraft.  The new space allotted from the expansion provides room to build the additional aircraft. 
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Thales UK confirmed a further key milestone for the WATCHKEEPER programme has been met, with the validation of Thales's automatic take-off and landing system, MAGIC ATOLS. This trial is one of a comprehensive set of trials taking place over the next year and follows on from the first successful flight trials of the WATCHKEEPER unmanned air vehicle (UAV) in April 2008. On 23 July 2008 automated take-off and landing flights of the WATCHKEEPER UAV using Thales's MAGIC ATOLS were successfully performed and validated in the presence of the UK Ministry of Defence at Megido airfield in northern Israel. The WATCHKEEPER system has been designed for automatic take-off and landing, without the need for pilots during this phase. Thales's MAGIC ATOLS is an accurate, automatic, compact system ensuring maximum safety, day, night, and in all weather conditions during the critical take-off and landing phases of fixed-wing UAV operations. It is GPS independent. WATCHKEEPER air vehicles have both a MAGIC ATOLS and a GPS-based system to give redundancy in automated take-off and recovery eliminating the need for pilot skills.
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American Airlines announced it will take delivery of another six Boeing 737-800 aircraft in 2010, bringing the total of 737-800s to be delivered to American in 2009-2010 to 76 aircraft. American signed an amendment to its purchase agreement with Boeing under which, among other things, American exercised its rights to purchase 20 737-800 aircraft for delivery in 2009 and 2010 as part of its previously communicated fleet plan. In addition, American will accelerate the replacement of its MD-80 aircraft by taking delivery of six additional 737-800s in 2010. American now has committed to take delivery of 36 737 aircraft in 2009 and 40 in 2010. The total of 76 737-800 deliveries in 2009-2010 compares to 70 aircraft as announced previously. Beyond this, American still has firm commitments that were made previously for 11 737s in 2013. American continues to evaluate opportunities to accelerate MD-80 replacement with additional 737s. American also said that it has arranged backstop financing for approximately two-thirds of its Boeing 737-800 deliveries in 2009 and 2010. All of American's 2009 deliveries may be financed under this agreement should American elect to do so. Additional details of the financing arrangement are confidential and are not being disclosed at this time.
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The oneworld global airline alliance has warmly welcomed and strongly supports the application for anti-trust immunity filed today by its members American Airlines, British Airways, Finnair, Iberia and Royal Jordanian. The filing was made as American Airlines, British Airways and Iberia signed a joint business agreement covering their flights between North America and Europe and unveiled plans for further co-operation oneworld Managing Partner John McCulloch said: "oneworld has for many years been the only global alliance without the benefit of anti-trust immunity between its key transatlantic partners.  This has put oneworld at a considerable disadvantage.  We've had to work a great deal harder and smarter than our competitors to deliver the alliance services and benefits that our customers have come to appreciate so much.
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A Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile configured with a National Nuclear Security Administration, or NNSA, test assembly was launched from North Vandenberg at 1:01 a.m. Aug. 13. The launch was an operational test to determine the weapon system's reliability and accuracy.
The missile's three unarmed re-entry vehicles traveled approximately 4,220 nautical miles to pre-determined targets in the Pacific Ocean. "The unique part of this mission was the incorporation of a maintenance task force from an operational missile wing," said Capt. Steve Bonin, launch director for the mission.
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Cessna announced at the Latin American Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition it has completed a series of seven wind tunnel tests as part of the design phase of the new Citation Columbus, Cessna's largest ever business jet. The testing was done at three locations in the U.S. and Europe by Cessna's Aerodynamics Group. Results from tests at the low-speed wind tunnel in San Diego, Calif., the ONERA French Aerospace Lab near Toulouse, and the high-speed wind tunnel at the Aircraft Research Association in Bedford, England, will be analyzed in the coming months, though preliminary data analysis revealed no surprises. "Low speed wind tunnel testing has allowed us to optimize flaps and slats for making our landing and low speed goals achievable," said Cessna Senior Manager, Aerodynamics and New Product Analysis Greg Rincker. "Much of this data will allow the slat and flap structure, including actuators, to be optimized to meet the loading needs without being excessively heavy. In the high speed tests, we have been fine tuning the wing airfoils and planform for more efficient manufacturability, lighter weight and the needs of systems like landing gear and anti-ice protection."
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Boeing recently completed work on the first BBJ 3. The BBJ 3 is a new, larger business jet based on the Boeing Next-Generation 737-900ER (Extended Range). The BBJ 3 has 1,120 square feet (104 square meters) of floor space, and provides 35 percent more interior space and 89 percent more luggage space than the BBJ 2. The BBJ 3's range is between 5,435 nmi (10,066 km) and 4,725 nmi (8,751 km) depending on the number of passengers flown. The airplane is now at DeCrane Aircraft in Georgetown, Del., where it will receive its long-range auxiliary fuel system and a Head-up Display. The fuel system, new for the model, will undergo a two-month certification process at DeCrane. The airplane's final stop is at a completion center of the owner's choosing, where it will receive a custom interior. The un-named customer will receive the completed airplane in 2009.
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Three C-17 Globemaster IIIs are only three signatures away from finding a new home at Papa Air Base, Hungary. After years of planning, NATO members and partners are only a few signatures away from gaining access to the C-17s to share for their national requirements, to include NATO missions in Afghanistan. "Some countries don't have enough [need for] airlift to purchase their own C-17s," said Peter Flory, the assistant secretary general for NATO's defense investment. NATO officials said the solution is to share the C-17s. The initiative, called Strategic Air Capability, or SAC, allows 12 NATO members and 2 partners to draw on the aircraft's capabilities at a fixed rate. First, all the nations must sign a memorandum of understanding. Then they pay the acquisition cost. After that, they only have to pay the operating cost at the end of each year. The nations then request flight hours with an operations team located at Papa AB. The team at Papa factors in time between aircraft usage for emergency use. The officials also can trade their flight hours with other nations in the group. If maintenance is required, the consortium will pull the costs from their operating budget to make the repairs.
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At its meeting held on March 27th 2008 the Hungarian Offset Committee, headed by the Hungarian Ministry of Economy and Transport, approved the final offset achievements submitted by the Saab/Gripen team. The remaining 2% of the offset obligation that was approved comprised the balance of the investment element of the offset contract. The total value of the Gripen offset delivered is 7419 million SEK (789 MEUR). "The Hungarian government is highly satisfied with Gripen International's commitment in fulfilling the Gripen offset obligation. They have delivered according to the contract and ahead of time. We will continue discussions between ourselves and Gripen International on future collaboration for the mutual benefit of Hungary and Sweden, taking advantage of the momentum of the offset programme" says Dr.Sándor Szabó, Director General of Investment and Defence Coordination ,Hungarian Ministry of National Development and Economy (legal successor of the Ministry of Economy and Transport).
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A long-awaited clarification of rules governing the export of civil aviation items, which was finalized today, will be a shot in the arm for the aerospace industry and American exports, AIA President and CEO Marion Blakey said. The State Department issued the final rule to eliminate ongoing confusion over implementation of section 17(c) of the Export Administration Act. While the act gave the Commerce Department export control jurisdiction over civil aviation parts, it has been unclear which parts could still be labeled "military" and subject to more stringent rules. Congressional attention to the matter, led by Reps. Don Manzullo and Brad Sherman and the Congressional Export Control Working Group, helped result in Thursday's move, Blakey said. "The administration and Congress have both demonstrated real leadership on this matter," Blakey said. "Resolving this confusing issue will help cement one of our industry's great strengths, our $60 billion foreign trade surplus."
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Boeing delivered a detailed proposal July 30 offering its advanced F/A-18E/F Super Hornet to the Brazilian Air Force as part of Brazil's F-X2 fighter competition. "International interest in the combat-proven Super Hornet continues to increase, and Boeing is honored Brazil is considering the Super Hornet to meet its near-term defense requirements," said Bob Gower, F/A-18 and EA-18 Programs vice president, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems. Boeing received a Request for Information from the government of Brazil on June 12. The stated initial requirement is for 36 aircraft, with the potential for up to 120 aircraft.
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The tough and prestigious Exercise red flag formally began at Air Force Base Nellis, Nevada USA on 10 Aug 08 with inaugural briefings & mission planning by the participating Air Forces. 09 Aug was the day of lead in preparations. The Red Flag 08 has the participation of IAF with eight Su-30s, two IL-78 tankers an IL-76 aircraft & 247 Air Warriors along with the French Air Force with Rafale, South Korean Air Force with F-15s & US AF with F-15s & F-16s. IAF & other visiting Air Forces along with a large USAF element would be part of the Blue Forces (friendly) which would engage in combat with the Red Forces. The Red Forces are the "Aggressors" with F-15s & F-16s aircraft of 64th & 65th Aggressor squadrons of USAF based at Air Force Base Nellis. Exercise Red Flag provides a realistic war situation in which the Blue Force pilots will have all possible odds 'thrown' at them. Availability of a large air to air range with threat replication contributes to the tremendous training value of the exercise. The replication of the air war would see the IAF's Su-30 aircraft participating in suppression of enemy air defence (SEAD) air to air & air to ground missions. The IL-78 tankers and USAF AWACS would be in active support role. The IL-76 would undertake tactical transport operations & large force engagements operations.
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Embraer delivered the 25th Super Tucano turboprop to the Colombian Air Force (FAC) in a ceremony held at the Company's headquarters, in São José dos Campos, Brazil. The event marked the conclusion of the deliveres that began in December 2006 to the aircraft's first foreign customer. The Super Tucano went into operation with the Brazilian Air Force (Força Aérea Brasileira – FAB), in December 2003, for pilot training and for operational missions. Two years later, Embraer signed a contract with the Colombian Air Force for 25 airplanes. The agreement included an advanced training system and operational support, with TOSS (Training and Operation Support System) ground stations, and was the first export of this aircraft.
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A competition for providers of communication services via satellite across Europe has been launched by the European Commission. Satellite operators will for the first time be able to offer services such as high speed data, mobile TV, disaster relief and remote medical services under a single European selection procedure instead of under 27 different national systems. This is made possible by a new EU decision on mobile satellite services that entered into force this July. Mobile satellite systems use radio spectrum to provide services between a mobile earth station and one or more stations either in space or on the ground at fixed locations. They have the capability to cover a large territory and reach areas where such services were economically unviable before. The new European selection procedure could allow companies to offer innovative wireless services throughout Europe over a specifically reserved spectrum as of 2009. "Mobile satellite services have the tremendous advantage of being able to cover most of the EU's territory thereby reaching millions of EU citizens across borders. They represent an unprecedented opportunity for all Europeans to access new communication services, and this not only in metropolitan areas, but also in rural and less populated regions," said EU Telecoms Commissioner Viviane Reding. "However, these satellite services depend on substantial investment and therefore need simple and swift procedures as well as long-term legal certainty.
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NASA has concluded that corrective action is appropriate in the Government Accountability Office bid protest of Exploration Systems & Technology, Inc. NASA determined that a compliance issue requires the termination of the contract for the Constellation Space Suit System with Oceaneering International, Inc. of Houston for the convenience of the government. NASA anticipates that corrective action will involve reconsideration of its procurement decision. The pending protest litigation is subject to a Government Accountability Office Protective Order. NASA had awarded the contract on June 12. The spacesuit will protect astronauts during Constellation Program voyages to the International Space Station and, by 2020, the surface of the moon. The Constellation Space Suit System contract is for design, development, test, evaluation and production of equipment to support astronauts aboard the Orion crew exploration vehicle, the Altair lunar lander, and during human exploration of the surface of the moon.
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Embraer and the Chilean Air Force (FACH) signed a contract today for the sale of 12 Super Tucano aircraft. This is the end result of a public bid held by FACH, which chose the airplane manufactured by Embraer as the best solution for the tactical training of its pilots. The first Super Tucano should be delivered in the second half of 2009. The Super Tucano is currently operated by the Brazilian and Colombian Air Forces for successfully training pilots and high-precision light attack procedures on internal security missions. The Embraer proposal chosen by the FACH includes a broad Integrated Logistic Support (ILS) package and an advanced Training and Operation Support System (TOSS), covering not only the aircraft, but also ground support stations. The TOSS package for the Chilean Air Force will consist of three systems: navigation and attack Mission Planning Station (MPS), Mission Debriefing Station (MDS), and Flight Simulator (FS).
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Jet Aviation and Tropic Air of São Paulo, Brazil recently signed a partnership agreement under which the two companies will work together to provide aircraft management and charter services in Brazil and Latin America. Announcement of the agreement came at this year's Latin American Business Aviation Conference and Exhibition (LABACE) in São Paulo. The new strategic partnership will support Jet Aviation and Tropic Air's common goal of increasing market share in the Latin American market for aircraft management and charter services. The agreement allows Jet Aviation to supplement its existing aircraft management and charter support services within the Latin American market, while offering Tropic Air administrative and sales support, as well as customer services training through the existing Jet Aviation structure and resources. Jet Aviation's worldwide buying power for insurance premiums and fuel discounts as well as its global network of FBO and maintenance facilities will further facilitate the partnership. Tropic Air will continue to hold its Aircraft Operating Certificate, and maintain full operational control of its current fleet and any additional managed aircraft that may be secured in the region through the agreement with Jet Aviation.
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FLUG REVUE 12/2016

FLUG REVUE
12/2016
07.11.2016

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