13.04.2008
FLUG REVUE

2008-04-13 - News in BriefNews in Brief

Kurzmeldungen<br /> +++<br /> Solar Impulse, the Swiss solar-powered aeroplane project, was presented today to the European Parliament in Brussels within the framework of the "Towards a more sustainable aviation" seminar organised by Mrs Christine de Veyrac, a Member of the European Parliament.

The Vice-President of the European Commission with responsibility for Transport, Mr Jacques Barrot, publicly announced the European Commission's patronage of the Solar Impulse project, in the presence of Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg, President and CEO of Solar Impulse respectively. In a world dependent on fossil fuels, the Solar Impulse project is a wake-up call to industry to take up the challenge of clean mobility. The aim is to harness the power of the sun to propel an aeroplane, day and night by solar power around the world without fuel or polluting emissions. A goal that is inaccessible unless we push back the boundaries of today's technologies in all relevant fields. For the European Commission, Solar Impulse is an example of what industry and energy policy makers should be doing to foster energy efficiency and clean mobility. For Solar Impulse, the patronage of the European Commission serves as recognition of its action in favour of renewable energies.
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AERO Vodochody launched production of Embraer aircraft subassemblies for the French aerospace company Latecoere Toulouse. The contract on exclusive deliveries of hinges and inner structure of doors for the regional transport jet aircraft Embraer 170 and Embraer 190 in a total volume of around CZK one billion was signed on October 3, 2007. Representatives of AERO and Latecoere continue in negotiations on further extension of cooperation.  "The Latecoere Program has so far created more than thirty workplaces in AERO, which we have filled partially from inner resources, partially by new recruitment," said Peter Ondro, President of AERO, adding that "recruitment of employees continues for the Latecoere Program as well as other projects."
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Jet Asia of Macau is expanding its charter fleet this year with the addition of seven new aircraft to reflect the buoyant trend the private jet sector is experiencing in Asia.  Two new Hawker Beechcraft Hawker 900XPs and four Hawker 750s are on order for delivery from December 2007 through to September this year.  A Bombardier Challenger 605 comes on line in August 2009 replacing one of two earlier 601s and a Global Express 5000 will follow a year later, replacing the company's original 601. In addition, last week it was confirmed that Jet Asia will be the first operator in Asia to fly the Project Phoenix VIP-configured Bombardier CRJ-200 on behalf of Ritz Pacific Ltd.  This aircraft will join the fleet later this year.
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Garmin announced the G950 avionics suite, an all-glass avionics suite that is designed for aircraft manufacturers who want a standardized avionics configuration and will complete certification of their airframe's avionics panel on their own. Quartz Mountain Aerospace is the first manufacturer to select the G950 for its 11E aircraft, a four-seat, single-engine airplane that is newly in production. "The G950 is a step between the G900X and G1000," said Gary Kelley, Garmin's vice president of marketing. "The G900X is designed for non-certified kitbuilt planes and the G1000 is tailored to the specific aircraft that it will be installed on and generally includes the GFC 700 autopilot. The G950 fits a new niche -- one which we've received many requests for -- allowing OEMs with certified airframes to have the benefits of a proven, Garmin all-glass cockpit. Since the G950 isn't customizable and doesn't include the GFC 700 autopilot, OEMs will also have the benefit of a streamlined certification process." The G950 integrates all primary flight, navigation, communication, terrain, traffic, surveillance, weather, and engine sensor data on Garmin's high-definition LCDs. Manufacturers can select between a two or three display G950 system, and the TFT displays boast XGA (1,024x768-pixel) resolution with wide viewing angles. The G950 does not include Garmin's GFC 700 autopilot.
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As the cornerstone of their commitment to minimise their impact on the environment, airlines in the oneworld alliance are currently in the midst of modernising their fleets with the delivery of almost 1,200 of the latest, most fuel efficient and quietest aircraft, worth almost US$130 billion. Since the year 2000, they have taken delivery of 590 of these more environmentally friendly aircraft, worth in excess of US$50 billion, with outstanding orders for another 580 for delivery in the coming years, worth more than US$75 billion. Environmental performance is a key factor in each oneworld members' selection of new aircraft. These new aircraft, and a host of other measures, have helped the alliance's carriers improve their fuel efficiency markedly in the past decade - and will play a key part in enabling them to meet their stretching targets for further fuel efficiency in future years, of up to 25 per cent by 2025, while reducing noise and other environmental impacts.
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NASA engineers have adjusted the flight path of the Phoenix Mars Lander, setting the spacecraft on course for its May 25th landing on the Red Planet. "This is our first trajectory maneuver targeting a specific location in the northern polar region of Mars," said Brian Portock, chief of the Phoenix navigation team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. The mission's two prior trajectory maneuvers, made last August and October, adjusted the flight path of Phoenix to intersect with Mars. NASA has conditionally approved a landing site in a broad, flat valley informally called "Green Valley." A final decision will be made after NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter takes additional images of the area this month.
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Frankfurt Airport (FRA) served 3.6 percent more passengers in the first quarter of 2008. A total of 12,248,854 passengers used the FRA global air transportation hub during the first three months of the year. Airfreight throughput at FRA rose by 4.4 percent to 513,331 metric tons from January to March 2008. Airmail slipped, as expected, by one percent to 22,846 metric tons. The number of aircraft movements declined by 0.3 percent to 116,288 takeoffs and landings, while the accumulated maximum takeoff weights (MTOWs) increased by 1.7 percent to 6,749,557 metric tons. In the first quarter of 2008, the Fraport Group's majority-owned airports (Frankfurt, Frankfurt-Hahn, Antalya, Lima, Burgas and Varna) welcomed a total of 16,100,323 passengers (up 4.4 percent) and handled 615,915 metric tons of cargo (up 7.3 percent). The number of aircraft movements climbed by 2.8 percent to 160,423 takeoffs and landings.
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Cessna announced at the Sun 'n Fun Fly-In in Lakeland, Fla., that it has surpassed 500 orders for the Citation Mustang entry level business jet. "We were confident that once our customers started flying the Citation Mustang we would have very happy owners and accelerated orders. The response from the global market has been nothing short of exceptional," said Roger Whyte, senior vice president, Sales and Marketing, at Cessna. "The Mustang is now certified in 47 countries, and the fleet of approximately 60 aircraft has accumulated more than 10,500 hours so far. Customers are extremely pleased with the airplane, the only fully operational entry level business jet available."
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Cessna said at the Sun 'n Fun Fly-In in Lakeland, Fla., that it is closing in on certification of the turbo diesel model of its popular 172 Skyhawk. Cessna and Thielert Aircraft Engines GmbH have accumulated more than 200 hours on a prototype of the single-engine piston aircraft in efforts to achieve European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) certification for the supplemental type certificate (STC) that will allow Cessna to offer a factory-installed engine operating on Jet-A fuel. Once EASA certification is secured, Cessna will pursue type certification from the Federal Aviation Administration. Deliveries are expected to begin by mid-2008. "Market interest in the new Skyhawk TD is very high; we plan to increase production in 2009 to meet the demand," said John Doman, Cessna vice president of worldwide propeller aircraft sales. "Customers see exceptional value and productivity in an airplane combining the reliability of the Skyhawk with Jet-A fuel's wide availability and lower direct operating cost." The Skyhawk TD features a Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) equipped Thielert Centurion 2.0 liter engine. The DOHC (double overhead camshaft) in-line four-cylinder turbocharged engine develops 155 horsepower, is liquid cooled and drives a composite three-blade constant speed propeller. Benefits include reduced fuel consumption, lower direct operating costs, simplified engine operation and improved hot-and-high aircraft performance.
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Cessna announced at the Sun 'n Fun Fly-In in Lakeland, Fla., that it has achieved Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification to deliver its Caravan models with Garmin G1000 integrated avionics as standard equipment. Cessna customers now will find the G1000 package on every aircraft ranging from the Skyhawk single-engine piston through the Citation Mustang entry-level business jet. The Caravan transition is well under way to incorporate the new system on the assembly line while simultaneously increasing the production rate, and the first retail deliveries of the Garmin-equipped Caravans remain on schedule to begin by mid-year.
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Mechanics at Boeing began final assembly work on the first 777 Freighter at the company's Everett, Wash., facility this week. The new cargo airplane will roll out of the factory later this month, and work will begin to prepare the airplane for flight test this summer. Eleven customers around the world have ordered 78 777 Freighters.
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Mexicana is to join oneworld. Mexico and Central America's leading airline accepted a formal invitation to become part of the world's leading quality airline alliance after being unanimously elected on board by the grouping's existing ten member airlines, which include some of the biggest and best names in the industry.Its subsidiary Click Mexicana will join at the same time, as an affiliate member of oneworld. Their joining process is expected to take 12 to 18 months to complete, with Iberia supporting Mexicana through these tasks, as its prime oneworld sponsor, assisted by American Airlines. So Mexicana and Click Mexicana will be flying as part of oneworld in 2009, when they will start offering the alliance's full range of services and benefits to their own customers and those from their new oneworld partners.
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Shandong Bin AO Aircraft Industries Comp., Ltd. (SBAAI), Diamond's first aircraft production facility in Asia, received the POA (Production Organisation Approval) in China for the DA40-TDI. This certificate was officially awarded on March, 17th 2008 by he EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) in cooperation with the CAAC (Civil Aviation Administration of China) and approved SBAAI for the production and delivery of the DA40-TDI to Chinese customers. "The Chinese market will quickly expand within the next few years", said Michael Feinig, managing director of Diamond Aircraft, "the largest Asian airlines will double their fleets, therefore our aircraft will be used for pilot trainings also in this area." The Binzhou facility with 30.000 m² was designed to produce up to 1000 aircraft per year and will deliver 80 Garmin G1000-equipped, DA40-TDIs in 2008 for the Asian market, before the facility is in full production.
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With ESA astronauts working in the Columbus laboratory onboard the International Space Station (ISS) and the first of ESA's new ATV cargo ships having delivered fresh supplies to the station, ESA's human spaceflight activities have entered a new era. It is now time for ESA to seek out new talent to bolster its Astronaut Corps for future manned missions to the ISS, the Moon and beyond. The European Space Agency entered the annals of human spaceflight for the first time in 1978 with its first astronaut selection, followed in 1983 by the first Spacelab mission. Preparations for ESA's Columbus laboratory project, meanwhile, involved a second selection of astronauts in 1992. The overall selection process will start on Monday 19 May.
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Aviation history was made when a Super Puma helicopter operated by Bristow Eastern Hemisphere departed from Aberdeen Airport this morning to various Shell installations in the East Shetland Basin with a Rockwell Collins' Traffic Alert Collision Avoidance System (TCAS II) operational. This the first time that a helicopter has gained operational approval for use of TCAS II equipment to provide the same level of enhanced safety that TCAS II normally provides to fixed wing aircraft. Rockwell Collins worked alongside the Aberdeen-based Bristow with the assistance of Shell Aircraft to install, test and certify TCAS II. The group was able to use Rockwell Collins' existing TCAS-4000 product line for fixed wing aircraft, without making any modifications to the system, and creatively apply it to a helicopter platform. This effort resulted in Bristow Eastern Hemisphere receiving the first ever EASA Supplemental Type Certification of TCAS II for rotary aircraft. The aircraft is currently flying with the system operational on routes from Aberdeen, Scotland around the North Sea. "This installation of TCAS II brings the proven safety benefits enjoyed by fixed wing aircraft to the rotary sector, further enhancing safety by significantly reducing the risk of airborne collision," said Denny Helgeson, vice president and general manager, Business and Regional Systems for Rockwell Collins. "The safety and operational benefits this brings will be appreciated by all rotary wing operators, especially those operating in IFR/IMC (Instrument Flight Rules/Instrument Meteorological Conditions) situations. We look forward to working together with Bristow and Shell Aircraft to apply TCAS II capability to other helicopter types."
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NASA is preparing to send a small spacecraft to the moon in 2011 to assess the lunar atmosphere and the nature of dust lofted above the surface.Called the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE), the mission will launch before the agency's moon exploration activities accelerate during the next decade. LADEE will gather detailed information about conditions near the surface and environmental influences on lunar dust. A thorough understanding of these influences will help researchers understand how future exploration may shape the lunar environment and how the environment may affect future explorers. "LADEE represents a low-cost approach to science missions, enabling faster science return and more frequent missions," said Ames Director S. Pete Worden. "These measurements will provide scientific insight into the lunar environment, and give our explorers a clearer understanding of what they'll be up against as they set up the first outpost and begin the process of settling the solar system."
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Aldus Aviation Limited ('Aldus') a newly established Shannon, Ireland-based international aircraft leasing company, has formally launched operations having completed the acquisition of an initial 11 Embraer E-Jets.  The company, which is headed by experienced aircraft leasing professionals, has recently concluded the purchase of these Embraer jets from GE Commercial Aviation Services (GECAS).  Under a committed umbrella debt facility provided by HSH Nordbank AG and Alliance and Leicester, Aldus will continue to grow the portfolio with additional aircraft. Aldus is poised to become an important strategic partner to Embraer as it intends to specialise in the ownership and leasing of the Embraer 70-120 seat E-Jet family (170, 175, 190, and 195 models) the world's leading large regional airliner family.
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Raytheon was awarded an $80 million U.S. Air Force contract March 31 for Phase II risk reduction of a radar-jamming variant of its Miniature Air Launched Decoy. MALD is a state-of-the-art, low-cost flight vehicle that is modular, air-launched and programmable. It weighs fewer than 300 pounds and has a range of approximately 500 nautical miles (about 575 statute miles). The new variant, known as the MALD-J, recently completed developmental flight testing and adds radar-jamming capability to the basic MALD platform. "MALD-J is a key component in a system of systems that will fill a critical capability in the airborne electronic attack arena," said Harry Schulte, vice president of Raytheon Missile Systems' Air Warfare Systems product line. "Like the baseline MALD, the J variant is modular and designed with growth in mind."
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Pratt & Whitney completed all altitude testing necessary for flight qualification of the F135 short-takeoff/vertical-landing (STOVL) propulsion system at the U.S. Air Force Arnold Engineering Development Center in Tennessee. As part of the F135 system development and demonstration (SDD) program, this test included more than 130 hours at various flight conditions demonstrating propulsion system performance, operability, afterburner capability and the ability of the engine control to detect and accommodate various simulated component faults. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company. "Our successful completion of altitude qualification testing brings us one step closer to STOVL flight qualification and powering the first flight of the STOVL variant of the F-35 Lightning II in up-and-away mode this May," said Bill Gostic, Pratt & Whitney vice president, F135 engine program.
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Pratt & Whitney's Geared Turbofan demonstrator engine has begun Phase II ground testing at the company's advanced test facility in West Palm Beach, Fla. Phase II of the ground test program will focus on engine performance and acoustic characteristics with a flight capable nacelle system prior to initiating flight testing mid-year. Pratt & Whitney is a division of United Technologies Corp. The Geared Turbofan demonstrator engine has logged a total of 130 hours since ground testing began in November 2007. Running from idle to full power, Phase I testing validated the design of the fan, low pressure compressor, fan drive gear system and thermal management system to demonstrate the Geared Turbofan engine's operational efficiency.
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Garmin International Inc. announced that it received FAA supplemental type certification (STC) for Garmin Synthetic Vision Technology (SVT), which is designed to integrate with the acclaimed G1000 avionics suite. Garmin's SVT presents a 3D depiction of terrain, obstacles and traffic on the G1000's primary flight-display (PFD) so that the avionics panel replicates what pilots would see outside the cockpit on a clear day. "Garmin's SVT brings an unprecedented level of integration and awareness to pilots of G1000-equipped aircraft," said Gary Kelley, Garmin's vice president of marketing. "SVT transforms the cockpit by accurately displaying synthetic terrain, flight hazards, flight path marker and highway-in-the-sky on the PFD so that the pilot maintains excellent airborne situational awareness even when flying in conditions of reduced visibility or darkness. This results in reduced pilot workload and safer flying." Garmin's SVT seamlessly blends information about the aircraft's position with topographic databases to create and display real-time 3D images. The information is presented on the G1000's large flight displays with XGA (1,024x768-pixel) resolution, superior sunlight readability and wide viewing angles. SVT presents the necessary information in ways that are easy to understand so pilots feel at ease interpreting the information.
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Experts from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the aviation authorities of the US and Canada, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA), met in Cologne for a two-day meeting on 1 and 2 April, to further improve harmonisation of rules. The transatlantic co-operation aims to align the authorities' rulemaking programmes by exchanging experience and agreeing on common priorities. Rules of common interest, which can be jointly developed by EASA, FAA and TCCA, will be identified in order to avoid unnecessary duplication of work and maximize available resources. Constant communication during the definition and implementation of the respective rulemaking programmes will ensure further harmonization. Rulemaking Director Claude Probst said: "We share common challenges, many of which require global action. We aim to create a level playing field to the benefit of our stakeholders".
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Rockwell Collins and Optical Air Data Systems have teamed to introduce a new solution called LandSafe to help helicopters navigate and land safely in degraded visual environments, especially brownout conditions. The LandSafe solution was developed through an exclusive licensing agreement between the two companies and incorporates commercial-off-the-shelf fiber optic laser technology to "sense through" particulate matter such as dust, snow, rain, smoke or fog while providing altitude, groundspeed and airspeed information to the flight crew. LandSafe is being evaluated by the U.S. Marine Corps for the CH-53E helicopter for possible inclusion in Rockwell Collins' Common Avionics Architecture System upgrade. "This system will help bring a whole new level of safety to helicopter crews by addressing one of the greatest hazards they face," said Phil Jasper, vice president and general manager of Mobility and Rotary Wing Solutions at Rockwell Collins. "We look forward to working with OADS to quickly bring this technology to our military customers."
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Alenia Aermacchi, a Finmeccanica company, unveiled today the first M-346 new generation advanced trainer in the baseline industrial configuration. The aircraft was rolled out from the Alenia Aermacchi factory at Venegono Superiore, in the presence of top-level military and industrial leaders. The first pre-series M-346 simultaneously bears witness to and reinforces the great maturity of the program which - thanks to the intensive development work performed on the two prototypes - has allowed the design to be optimised and industrialized. The design effort for the baseline industrial configuration aircraft has concentrated on structural optimisation, with additional benefits in terms of improved maintenance. The goal has been achieved by rationalizing the distribution of wing spars and fuselage frames, together with a more widespread use of composite and titanium parts. Together with the integration of the new main landing gear and the standardization of general mission systems, this has brought about a considerable reduction in the empty weight, in the order of about 700 kilos.
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AgustaWestland, in support of its increasing business activities in Japan, is pleased to announce the opening of its new regional business headquarters in Tokyo. The opening ceremony was attended by Finmeccanica Chief Operating Officer Giorgio Zappa, AgustaWestland Chief Executive Officer Giuseppe Orsi, Italian Ambassador Mario Bova and British Ambassador Sir Graham Fry. Giuseppe Orsi, CEO, AgustaWestland commented "We are proud to announce the opening of our new business headquarters in Tokyo to support our expanding and already significant presence in Japan. AgustaWestland has seen its position and share of the Japanese helicopter market steadily increased in recent years to become a major supplier of helicopters to both the commercial and government markets. The new headquarters will play an important role to further expand our business in Japan where we see significant future business opportunities." AgustaWestland has a longstanding and successful presence in Japan. Several partnerships involving primary players including Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Mitsui Bussan Aerospace, Marubeni, Kaigai Aviotech and Kanematsu have further reinforced AgustaWestland's role in the country.  
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Boeing's CH-47F Chinook helicopter has been fielded by Bravo Company, 2nd General Support Aviation Battalion, 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, based at Fort Hood, Texas. This is the second U.S. Army unit to field the CH-47F since the aircraft was certified combat-ready in July 2007. "This aircraft is light-years ahead in flight-management systems compared with our older aircraft," said Col. Patrick Tierney, commander, Combat Aviation Brigade. "The F-model Chinook has the same systems as the latest civilian aircraft." Lt. Col. Dave Fleckenstein, commander, 2nd Battalion, 4th Aviation Regiment, Combat Aviation Brigade, Huntington, W.V. -- who pilots one of the new Chinooks -- noted that the aircraft's radar altitude hold "keeps the aircraft a set number of feet off the ground and negates making multiple passes to land. Also, the all-digital cockpit gives us five displays, with each capable of showing several different pages of flight plans, alternate routes and data from different sources processed by the central processing unit."
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As the Swedish Air Force prepares to modernize its first C-130 aircraft, members of Sweden's C-130 program and Boeing's C-130 Avionics Modernization Program (AMP) are working together to ensure success. "We have a very big job ahead of us, but based on what we've seen so far, I am very confident with how the team is moving forward," said Fredrik Edh, Sweden's C-130 program manager. Edh and other members of Sweden's C-130 program recently visited Boeing Support Systems facilities in Long Beach, Calif., and San Antonio. Under a $19.8 million contract signed in August 2006, Boeing will complete engineering manufacturing development for one Swedish aircraft. The aircraft is scheduled to arrive at Boeing's San Antonio facility in September for modifications and upgrades. A production contract to modify six additional Swedish Air Force C-130s is in the planning stages.
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The latest version of the Royal Navy's Tomahawk land attack missile (TLAM) has been declared operational - three months earlier than planned. Used to arm submarines, the new Tomahawk Block IV missile is considerably more capable than its predecessors. It has a significantly reduced response time and can fly further, striking land targets from the sea up to one thousand miles away with even greater precision. They are able to re-target or safely abort in flight and can relay images en route. The missile was first successfully test fired from a Royal Navy submarine last June. Baroness Taylor, Minister for Defence Equipment & Support, said "These missiles extend the Royal Navy's world class capability to deliver long range precision attacks covertly from submarines. This is a real boost to the Navy's firepower, and it is a testament to the hard work of MoD and industry that we are able to bring this into service early and within budget."
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A combined U.S. Air Force/Lockheed Martin team has completed a rapid on-orbit deployment of the modernized Global Positioning System Block IIR (GPS IIR-M) satellite launched on March 15 from Cape Canaveral. The spacecraft, which includes new features that enhance operations and navigation signal performance, has been declared operational for military and civilian navigation users worldwide. Lockheed Martin's operations team assisted Air Force Space Command's 2ndSpace Operations Squadron (2 SOPS) and its Reserve associate unit 19 SOPS based at Schriever Air Force Base, Colo., with the launch and early orbit maneuvers. The record on-orbit deployment and checkout of all spacecraft systems and subsequent payload initialization was completed in just over nine days, allowing 2SOPS to set the spacecraft healthy for users around the globe.
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The involvement and commitment of the military is crucial for the success of SESAR, but additional resources must be allocated for this according to a recent meeting of the Military ATM Board (MAB). The meeting, which was held on 1 April at EUROCONTROL, agreed that a close relationship with the SESAR JU at strategic and technical level will be necessary. However, funding mechanisms must be found that would allow the military to invest resources beyond the envelope of national security and defence. "Military forces across Europe are well aware of the importance of SESAR and of their involvement in it," said Mr Jean-Robert Cazarré, Director of Civil-Military Coordination at EUROCONTROL. "We are addressing the military-military and civil-military coordination at European level through EUROCONTROL and in particular the MAB - but we must also recognise the importance of additional funding in order for us to be fully integrated and contribute to SESAR and Single European Sky activities.
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A newly released report from the U.S. Department of Defense shows that estimated acquisition costs dropped by nearly $1 billion from 2006 to 2007 for the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II program. The Selected Acquisition Reports estimate that F-35 program costs over the aircraft's three-decade production run decreased by $981 million (-0.3 percent), from $299.8 billion to $298.8 billion. The F-35 cost reduction was attributed in part to lower material costs related to agreements made by Lockheed Martin and its subcontractors, and revised estimates of support costs.
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SES S.A. announced that SES AMERICOM, its North American subsidiary, has declared to insurers that its recently launched satellite – AMC-14 – is now considered a total loss, due to a lack of viable options to reposition the satellite to its proper geostationary orbit. "SES and Lockheed Martin have carefully examined all the available options for repositioning this satellite into its intended geostationary orbit," said Edward Horowitz, President and CEO of SES AMERICOM. "Unfortunately, none of those options would allow effective use of the spacecraft. The various repositioning scenarios presented carry unacceptable risks, and would result in a severely shortened life of the satellite. Therefore, we have no choice but to claim a total loss of the satellite with our insurers." AMC-14 was built by Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems, and launched on a Proton/Breeze M rocket provided by ILS (International Launch Services) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.  
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Close on the heels of floating multi-billion dollar global tenders for buying long-range artillery guns, India plans to invite international bids for purchase of 312 light helicopters. The tenders for these helicopters, 197 for the army aviation and another 115 for the air force, are expected to be floated in the next few days and are estimated to be worth over two billion dollars. India plans to buy these helicopters to give its forces capability of rapid deployment and for logistics support on the icy heights of Siachen glacier. Textron-based American helicopter major Bell, European arms major EADS, Russia's Kamov and Italian Augusta Westland are expected to be the main bidders for the Indian tenders. The four helicopter manufacturers were also the bidders in the Indian army request for proposals for 197 helicopters, which was cancelled at the last moment after government said rules of procurement had been flouted by a bidder.  
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FMV, the Swedish Defence Material Administration, has responded to a request from the Croatian government for information regarding the supply of twelve (12) new Gripen fighters to meet Croatia's national, European and NATO needs. "FMV is pleased to be part of the ongoing procurement process in Croatia and we believe the proposal we have submitted is very competitive" says Jerry Lindbergh, Sales Manager for Central and Eastern Europe at FMV. This response, which was submitted on 27 March 2008 in close co-operation with Saab AB, includes offers for support, training and an extensive industrial offset package.  
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The Target Drone "Turna," which was developed by Turkey's aerospace center Turkish Aerospace Industries, Inc. (TAI), realized its first test flight with the turboprop engine, which was developed by Turkish Engine Industries Inc. (TEI), which designs, develops and manufactures engines for air platforms in Turkey, on April 4, 2008. Under the Collaboration Agreement signed between TAI and TEI on September 11, 2008, regarding the intention to provide the maximum local benefit in order to initiate the model for "local platform-local engine", the indigenous Target Drone System, which was indigenous, except its engine, acquired a complete "national product identity" with the integration of the turboprop engine developed by TEI. Following the safety tests, the turboprop engine, which has 90 libre propulsion power and 6500 maximum propeller speed, is foreseen to be the standard engine for the first national air platform "Turna" in the inventory of the Turkish Armed Forces. Turna, which is being used for the training of air defense forces since 2001, has successfully realized over hundreds of flights.  
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A press website has published and put online an extract of the AMF inquiry report on the financial communications of EADS, which has not been delivered to us yet by AMF, including a list of names of persons accused of alleged insider trading. This is the second time after leaking the intermediate report to the Figaro on 3 October 2007 that confidential AMF documents are leaked to the public. EADS is not only surprised but really shocked to see how this is contrary to legal procedures and how the rights of defence are simply ignored. Obviously, the company is not able to give any comment as long as it has not read and evaluated the full document and its conclusions, and keeps its official request to AMF that individuals can preserve their presumption of innocence and not being publicly accused without their own access to the files.  
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EADS Astrium has entered into an agreement to acquire the innovative University of Surrey spin-out company Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL), which specialises in the design and manufacture of small and micro satellites. This landmark deal provides the financial and industrial resources required for SSTL's expansion and future development. Completion of the acquisition is subject to obtaining the relevant regulatory approval. "In the UK we are renowned for our design and manufacture of telecommunications satellites, interplanetary spacecraft and satellite services provision. SSTL is one of the great success stories of the UK space industry and will be a substantial complement to what we can offer customers around the world with its expertise in small and micro satellites and their innovative approach to developing new markets for space," said Colin Paynter, CEO of Astrium in the UK.  
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The Cabinet of Ministers (CoM) Regulation "On Memorandum of Understanding on Strategic Airlift Capabilities between the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Latvia, Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic, Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Estonia, Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Finland, Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Hungary, Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Italy, Ministry of National Defence of the Republic of Lithuania, Ministry of Defence of the Kingdom of Netherlands, Ministry of Defence of the Kingdom of Norway, Ministry of National Defence of the Republic of Poland, Government of Romania, Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Slovenia, Government of the Kingdom of Sweden and Department of State of the Unites States of America" submitted by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) was proclaimed at the CoM State Secretary Meeting on 3 April. The elaborated CoM Regulation will allow Latvia to become a full member of the Strategic Airlift Capabilities (SAC) programme and will create a legal base for the Latvian participation in the implementation of SAC programme.  
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Deutsche Lufthansa AG is going to sell indirectly through a holding company its stake in the ground handling company, GlobeGround Berlin GmbH, to nationally employed WISAG group. The disposal reflects Lufthansa's portfolio management strategy of focusing on the company´s core business segments. Deutsche Lufthansa AG is going to sell 49 per cent of the shares in GlobeGround Berlin GmbH. The Berlin airports are also going to sell their majority shares in the ground handling company to WISAG group. The price of the transaction has not been disclosed. The transaction is still subject to regulatory approval. After its sale to WISAG group, the GlobeGround Berlin company will continue providing its high-quality passenger, cargo and ground handling services to Lufthansa in Berlin.
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The European Union took a decisive step forward in the realisation of the Galileo project, which represents the greatest technological challenge in the history of the Union in terms of ensuring its own satellite-navigation system. It is also a major boost to the European industry in this field. EU Transport Ministers today supported the text of the proposal of the so-called Galileo Implementation Regulation, which represents the legal basis for the implementation of the budget and sets out a new management structure for the project. "Today, we sent a clear signal to Europe and the whole world that we are still firmly committed to provide all European citizens and enterprises with a high-quality satellite-navigation service by 2013. We will create new jobs and Europe will claim its rightful place side by side with the technologically most developed world powers," stated the President of the Transport Council of the EU, the Slovenian Transport Minister, Radovan Žerjav. The budget for the implementation of the entire programme of the European global satellite-navigation system (the European GNSS programme) amounts to EUR 3.4 billion for the period 2007-13.  
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The T-37 Tweet formally retired April 3 from Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training here after 39 years of service as the gateway to the sky for more than 10,000 Air Force aviators. Columbus Air Force Base was the last Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training base flying the T-37, but the T-37 will continue to be used at Sheppard AFB, Texas, in the Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training program. Vance AFB, Okla., and Laughlin AFB, Texas, phased out the T-37 from their pilot training programs in 2007. "If you are a flier or a maintainer of any airplane, there is an emotional attachment," said Maj. Gen. Irving L. Halter Jr., the 19th Air Force commander. "The T-37 is a part of the fabric of Air Force aviation as well as American aviation." The first T-37 arrived at Columbus AFB in 1969 in preparation for the base's realignment from Strategic Air Command to Air Training Command in 1970.  
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The programme to re-equip all 52 aircraft of SWISS's European fleet with new seats has now been completed. As a result, passengers on all SWISS flights within Europe can now enjoy the greater legroom and seating comfort offered by the new high-quality seats.  It was back in mid-October 2006 that SWISS launched the seat refurbishment programme for its European fleet, beginning with its Airbus A320 family. Since then, not only its entire short-haul Airbus fleet but also all the Avro RJ100s of its Swiss European Air Lines subsidiary have been equipped with the new seats. The innovative Recaro seats, with their carbon frames and leather upholstery, have proved very popular among SWISS customers. Indeed, the airline was voted number-one for cabin comfort on its European services in January by the readers of Business Traveller magazine.
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Aer Lingus, Ireland's national carrier, has become the latest airline to place a firm order for the all-new A350 XWB. In its biggest ever acquisition for long-haul aircraft, the Irish airline has received shareholder approval to purchase six A350-900s, along with six additional A330-300s, confirming its earlier placed contract. This latest contract brings total firm orders for the A350 XWB to 362 from 22 customers.
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Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne has been awarded a contract extension by NASA to continue development of the Common Extensible Cryogenic Engine (CECE). The CECE is advancing technology readiness to support future lunar lander development. "Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is pleased that NASA has continued development of the CECE," said Graham Webb, general manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Florida & Mississippi operations. "We look forward to competing to power the first lunar landing of the 21st Century." The CECE development contract, which was originally awarded in June 2005, extends through March 2009. During this next phase of the program, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne will design, manufacture and test a new, enhanced injector to support stable combustion at very low thrust.
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International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) General Vice President Robert Roach, Jr. issued the following statement on current airline industry maintenance and customer service concerns: "The recent grounding of aircraft and stranding tens of thousands of passengers due to maintenance compliance issues are just symptoms of a much larger industry problem. Airlines are increasingly outsourcing critical aspects of their maintenance programs, replacing customer service representatives with computers and failing to provide passengers with the service they pay for. The airline industry is providing the worst customer service in its history after slashing jobs and cutting employee wages. Consumer complaints were up 60 percent last year, and more than a quarter of all flights experienced delays. This is all occurring while executives at major airlines are considering mergers to create even larger, more unmanageable carriers, producing bigger headaches for passengers. The Machinists Union is urging executives at all airlines to refocus their efforts to provide superior safety and customer service to passengers. This industry is in chaos and senseless mergers will only make things worse."
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FLUG REVUE 12/2016

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12/2016
07.11.2016

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