22.06.2009
FLUG REVUE

News Update 22 June 2009 - News in Brief

Our weekly news roundup from around the aerospace industry.

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The Bell Boeing Program Office announced that it has been awarded Phase 1.5 of a two-phase Joint Performance Based Logistics (PBL) contract from the U.S. Department of Defense to support the V-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft for the Marine Corps (MV-22), and Air Force Special Operations Command (CV-22). Phase 1.5 of the contract, valued at $11 million, is a modification to an existing contract, designed to implement reliability improvements on a select number of aircraft components which have been determined to have a significant impact on mission readiness. Under the terms of the new contract, government is investing in non-recurring engineering costs to enable Bell Boeing engineers to design changes to certain key aircraft components to improve reliability.
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Boeing Company and the U.S. Air Force on June 13 successfully fired the high-power laser aboard the Advanced Tactical Laser (ATL) aircraft for the first time in flight. During the test, ATL took off from Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., and fired its laser while flying over White Sands Missile Range, N.M., successfully hitting a target board located on the ground. ATL, which Boeing is developing for the U.S. Air Force, is a C-130H aircraft equipped with a chemical laser, a beam control system, sensors and weapon-system consoles. "This successful test is a major step toward bringing directed energy capability to the warfighter," said Gary Fitzmire, vice president and program director of Boeing Directed Energy Systems. "We have demonstrated that an airborne system can fire a high-power laser in flight and deliver laser beam energy to a ground target. ATL's ultra-precision engagement capability will dramatically reduce collateral damage."
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Raytheon'sAIM-9X Sidewinder missile demonstrated surface-to-air capability when it engaged an unmanned aircraft vehicle target during a May 16 test. The AIM-9X is a fifth-generation, high off-boresight, infrared-guided missile developed and deployed for the air-to-air mission. This test marks the second time the AIM-9X was fired in a surface-to-air role. During the test a telemetered AIM-9X was cued by an off-board sensor. The missile, which was mounted on a LAU-7A/D launcher on a U.S. Marine Corps Humvee, tracked, launched and guided to within lethal range of the target.
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Pascal Sénéchal, Chairman & CEO, Messier-Dowty, representing also Messier-Bugatti (both SAFRAN Group companies), and XU Jun, President of LAMC, representing also Xian Aviation Brake Technology and First Aircraft Institute, signed on June 5th a LOI (Letter Of Intent) preparing a cooperation between these companies for the Chinese single aisle COMAC C919 program. The signature took place in Shanghai, in the presence of Mr. CHEN Fusheng, Vice General Manager of AVIC Aircraft.
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Rolls-Royce will power new Gulf Air aircraft in an order worth US$1.5bn at list prices. Trent 700EP (Enhanced Performance) engines will power 20 Airbus A330 aircraft, with deliveries beginning in 2012. The contract includes a TotalCare? long-term service agreement. In addition, Gulf Air also renewed TotalCare? on Trent 700s that power 10 A330s already in service. The Trent 700EP has the best performance, lowest emissions and lowest fuel burn on the A330. Rolls-Royce has secured more than 70 per cent of the A330 market over the last three years and eight of the nine Middle East A330 operators have selected Trent 700 engines to power their fleets. The contract was signed at the Paris Air Show by Gulf Air Chairman Talal Al Zain and Rolls-Royce Chief Executive Sir John Rose.
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Rolls-Royce announced that the German carrier Condor Airlines has signed a five-year extension to its existing TotalCare long-term services agreement. The contract covers the airline's fleet of Boeing 757s powered by RB211-535E4 engines. The new contract is worth around $150 million and extends the previous 10-year agreement that was signed in 1999. Uwe Balser, Condor Managing Director, said: “This agreement marks a further development in our valued relationship with Rolls-Royce. TotalCare? provides us with engine support services, which are tailored to our operation. This enables us to manage costs and focus on our customers' needs.”
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Rolls-Royce has signed a jointly funded research and technology contract for ENTAPS (Engine Technologies for Aircraft Persistence and Survivability) with the United Kingdom Ministry of Defence (MOD). The three-year contract is aimed at maturing key propulsion technologies for future Deep Persistent Offensive Capability concepts. The research programme will mature the highest risk areas of the engine to the Technical Readiness Level required for Initial Gate and will also contain studies which address the integration of these technologies within the engine. Graham Hopkins, Director of Engineering and Technology at Rolls-Royce Defence Aerospace, said: “The award of this contract is key to the continued development of our military engine technologies in the UK. It enables us to work on areas such as distortion-tolerant fans and high temperature combustion and turbine systems, which will potentially bring big capability benefits for UK defence operations in the future.
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A detailed, full-scale representation of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II stealth fighter rolled out of the Fort Worth factory today, with production-representative Very Low Observable airframe structure and coatings. Along with dedicated flight test aircraft, the model will be a key component in validating the F-35's radar-evading properties. "Today's milestone is the realization of an F-35 test schedule commitment we made more than two years ago," said Dan Crowley, F-35 executive vice president and program manager for the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike fighter program. "We continue to achieve outstanding progress in F-35 design, development, production, ground test and early flight test."
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AgustaWestland announced that the Government of the Arab Republic of Egypt through the Ministry of Defence has signed a contract for three AW109 Power light twin helicopters. The AW109 Power Helicopters will be operated by the Egyptian Air Force and used to perform emergency medical service (EMS) duties on behalf of the Ministry of Health. The Ministry of Defence is the first customer for the AW109 Power in Egypt.
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Eurocopter announced the deliveries of new EC135 helicopters to the Turkish operator Koçoglu Aviation, who has ordered a total of 12 helicopters. Koçoglu Aviation has been operating six aircraft since November 2008, and the remaining new aircraft will be delivered in August 2009. The helicopters will perform emergency medical services to and from hospitals equipped with helicopter landing facilities. The Turkish operator ordered 12 aircraft in 2008: Ten of the helicopters are EC135s with the last two being an EC145 and an EC155 operated on lease.
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At the Paris Air Show, Eurocopter's subsidiary Helibras delivers the very first EC145 Stylence in Brazil to a customer in the country. The new aircraft will transport VIP passengers between Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. The two cities are 350 km apart. The EC145 Stylence that will be delivered in Brazil offers passengers excellent flight visibility and has sophisticated equipment packages, such as a weather radar and a navigation system with integrated electronic cards and GPS. The EC145 also offers simplified maintenance and impressive flight endurance (up to 680 km). It merges ergonomics and advanced technology to provide fully-equipped in-flight offices for business executives and companies.
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Eurocopter and the National Research Council Canada (NRC) have signed a 10-year agreement to work together to develop innovative research, development and technology solutions for the aerospace industry. This new agreement is part of a Memorandum of Understanding signed between NRC and Eurocopter's parent company EADS in June 2008. “As a global company, EADS with all its divisions is entering into cooperation with high-skilled international partners such as the Canadian R&D community” said Jean Botti, Chief Technical Officer of EADS. “This network of partnerships is boosting the competitiveness of all participants.” Eurocopter and NRC will engage in a series of collaborative aerospace projects, including the development of innovative manufacturing technologies and high-tech flight tests for environmental investigations. Meanwhile, Eurocopter and NRC will also encourage participation from industry partners in Canada to promote competitiveness and share knowledge.
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On June 19th, EADS Cognac Aviation Training Services celebrated with French Air Force authorities the support of 50,000 flight hours logged at the Cognac Air Base. EADS Cognac Aviation Training Services (ECATS) was inaugurated in April 2006 to provide means and services allotted to pilot basic training of the French Air Force. This outsourcing operation is unique in France and pioneers in terms of the service quality provided to the French Air Force with the installation and operation of a fleet of 18 GROB 120 aircraft equipped with a new generation of IFR instrumentation (Instrument Flight Rules) and therefore qualified as Flight and Navigation Procedure flight trainers. Thus, the French Air Force has significantly modernised its pilot training syllabus based on the services provided by ECATS.
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Raytheon delivered its first Miniature Air Launched Decoy initial operational test and evaluation unit to the U.S. Air Force. During IOT&E, the U.S. Air Force will conduct numerous flight tests on the MALD(TM) to evaluate the system in operationally realistic and demanding scenarios. MALD is a state-of-the-art, low-cost flight vehicle that is modular, air-launched and programmable. It weighs less than 300 pounds and has a range of approximately 500 nautical miles (about 575 statute miles). MALD protects aircrews and their aircraft by duplicating the combat flight profiles and signatures of U.S. and allied aircraft.
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Sikorsky Global Helicopters has opened a world-class facility custom-designed for customers as they take final delivery of their helicopters. Housed in a new 61,000-square-foot building located in Coatesville, Penn., the facility will serve as the Flight Test Hangar & Customer Delivery Center. The state-of-the-art structure incorporates three partial floors of administrative space along with dedicated hangar space for up to eight aircraft. The new facility is designed to provide exceptional customer service, with an individual suite for each customer, private conference rooms, a business center, kitchen area and lounge. Customers have secure, badge-controlled access to their assigned hangar to inspect their aircraft as it is presented for delivery. The program manager for each customer will work with the delivery center manager to assure an exceptional delivery experience.
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Boeing and MC Aviation Partners (MCAP), a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corp., have finalized an order for two Next-Generation 737-800s valued at $153 million at list prices. The order represents MCAP's first direct purchase of airplanes from Boeing. The Tokyo-based MCAP, which holds the largest aircraft lease assets in Japan, owns 60 airplanes worth more than $2 billion. MCAP also manages 60 other airplanes.
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Air Austral has selected Engine Alliance GP7200 engines to power its two Airbus A380 aircraft. Air Austral has also selected the Engine Alliance as its service provider to maintain, repair and overhaul the engines with a 10-year Fleet Management Agreement. The total value of the deal is worth $240M (USD) at list prices. Based in Saint Denis, La Reunion, Air Austral has provided service over the Indian Ocean since 1975. The airline flies to nearby Indian Ocean islands as well as locations in France, Australia, South Africa and Thailand. In January, Air Austral announced plans to have its new A380 aircraft operated in a single, economy class configuration on its high-density route from La Reunion to Paris, France, through a subsidiary airline working under a "low-cost" model.
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Magellan Aerospace has been awarded a contract this past month to produce F-35 Lightning II horizontal tail components in the third lot of Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP). It is the initial contract awarded to Magellan by BAE Systems for F-35 components, valued at $11M Cdn. over a two year period. Magellan has been participating on the F-35 Lightning II aircraft program from the earliest stages in 2001. Machined details and complex assemblies have been delivered throughout the System Development and Demonstration (SDD) phase. Magellan is currently producing components for all three of the F-35 variants. The horizontal tails produced at Magellan will be used on the Conventional Takeoff and Landing (CTOL) variant. Currently up to 1038 ship sets of horizontal tails are planned to be produced by Magellan over the life of the F-35 (also known as the Joint Strike Fighter) program.
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Final assembly has begun on the first Boeing 787 Dreamliner destined for delivery to launch customer ANA (All Nippon Airways) of Japan. ANA and Boeing launched the 787 program with a firm order for 50 of the all-new composite jetliner. Deliveries are scheduled to begin in the first quarter of 2010. Boeing and ANA celebrated the occasion with a traditional "Kagami wari" ceremony, the breaking open of a wooden "Taru" (sake barrel) lid with wooden mallets.
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SELEX Galileo and UOMZ (Urals Optical and Mechanical Plant) of Russia have signed a collaboration agreement for Electro-Optic systems for civil applications. Under the agreement, UOMZ will supply stabilised turrets to SELEX Galileo for their airborne surveillance solutions. "This agreement is a significant opportunity for SELEX Galileo to expand its industrial collaboration with Russian industry”, declared Marco Buratti, VP Marketing and Sales Electro-Optics and Naval at SELEX Galileo. “For UOMZ it represents an important opportunity for our growth in the export markets", said Mr Veniamin S. Elinson, Deputy General Director of UOMZ.
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The French private airline Aigle Azur has placed a firm order with Airbus for one new A319 aircraft. This is the first time the airline has purchased an aircraft directly from Airbus. The new A319 will be configured in a comfortable two-class layout and will be powered by CFM-56 engines from CFM International. Aigle Azur currently operates a fleet of ten A320 Family aircraft, comprising three A319s, three A320s and four A321s. Aigle Azur flies from several cities in France to various destinations including Algeria, Mali, Morocco, Portugal and Tunisia.
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L-3 WESCAM, a wholly owned subsidiary of L-3 Communications, announced that it has delivered its 1,000th MX-Series electrooptic/infrared (EO/IR) imaging turret to the Defence Equipment Support at the United Kingdom Ministry of Defence (U.K. MoD). The MX-15 will be installed on a Merlin HM Mk1. WESCAM MX systems are currently installed on ten different U.K. MoD platforms, including the Nimrod MR Mk2, Sea King, and Gazelle supporting the U.K. MoD missions throughout the U.K., Iraq and Afghanistan.
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The Government of Argentina has begun an extensive effort to modernize the national airline Aerolineas Argentinas and domestic carrier Austral. President Cristina Kirchner unveiled a new Boeing 737/700 last week, the first new airplane bought for Aerolineas Argentinas in 16 years. The airline and its sister airline Austral were nationalized in December 2008 to maintain the airline to high standards. The fleet, one of the oldest in the world, is being rapidly updated. A second Boeing 737/700 will be delivered the end of June and Aerolineas will soon count on nine other similar aircraft that will be leased, to be handed over before the end of the year. In addition, the Secretary of Transportation of Argentina has announced the purchase of 15-20 new Airbus A330 and A 340 aircraft for long-haul travel to improve connections with international markets. Domestic carrier Austral will be updated following the signing of an agreement in May with the government of Brazil to purchase 20 Embraer 190 aircraft, to be delivered at a rate of two a month starting in early 2010. The Embraer aircraft will be configured to Austral's specifications of 96 comfortably spaced seats in two classes. President Kirchner has made the modernization of the two airlines an important aspect in her governmental policy. As she announced the new aircraft purchases she said, "Today is a very special day. After 16 years, Aerolineas Argentinas is buying new aircraft. It is not just an economic story; it is also the restoration of national dignity." The Embraer aircraft will cost US$600 million (Euros 436 million), of which 85 percent will be financed through a loan from Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social (BNDES) of Brazil. As part of this agreement, Embraer will produce spare aircraft parts in the Military Aircraft Factory in the city of Cordoba. The new planes will replace B737 and MD80 aircraft, allowing Aerolineas Argentina and Austral to operate their fleets with greater operating efficiency, lower maintenance costs and reduce pollutant emissions.
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Israir, the second largest domestic airline in Israel, has selected International Aero Engines (IAE) V2500 engines to power three Airbus A320s. The order includes a long-term IAE Aftermarket Services agreement and is worth about $26 million to Pratt & Whitney. The agreement is for the latest V2500 SelectOne(TM) build standard. This represents the first order Israir has placed for the V2500 on the first A320s the airline has purchased.
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Goodrich has been selected by Airbus to provide advanced cabin attendant seats for the new A350 XWB aircraft. The selection is expected to generate $100 million in original equipment and aftermarket revenue over the life of the program. With this new contract, Goodrich cabin attendant seats are featured on all Airbus aircraft including the A300, A320 A330, A340 and A380 Family aircraft. The seats will be produced by Goodrich's team in Colorado Springs, Colo. Design and development work will commence in the second quarter of 2009, and production deliveries are scheduled to start in the first quarter 2011. The advanced cabin attendant seats, referred to as “16G” seats, incorporate improvements in reliability and safety, and meet the most stringent government regulations for emergency landing protection.
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Goodrich has successfully completed flight testing of its Boeing Next-Generation 737 wheels and carbon brakes. Formal certification of the equipment is expected in the second half of 2009, and the brakes available for delivery on production airplanes in the first half of 2010. The new wheels and carbon brakes, which will be fully compatible with all Next-Generation 737 models, provide a weight savings of approximately 700 pounds (318 kg) per airplane compared to high capacity steel brakes and 550 pounds (250 kg) compared to standard capacity steel brakes. According to Jim Wharton, vice president of Commercial Aircraft Wheels & Brakes at Goodrich, “Because the weight saving reduces fuel burn and carbon dioxide emissions, Goodrich is seeing significant airline interest in the new wheel and carbon brake. Goodrich has both steel and carbon brakes available for this aircraft, allowing airlines to select the equipment best suited to their operational needs.”
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Honeywell announced today it has delivered its 30,000th Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS), more than 20 years after certifying the world's first safety system to prevent mid-air collisions, which provided the baseline for industry-wide requirements and system adoption. “Honeywell's invention of TCAS fundamentally improved the safety standard in aviation, with mid-air collisions three times less likely today than just 10 years ago,” said Rob Gillette, President and CEO, Honeywell Aerospace. “Honeywell's system is helping to save lives every day by providing improved situational awareness and timely traffic advisories.
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Bombardier Aerospace released its annual market forecasts for the business and commercial aircraft markets. “The financial turbulence being felt around the globe has placed a significant focus on the challenges facing the aviation industry, particularly within the business jet sector. The sharp downturn in global economies in late 2008 precipitated a sharp decline in demand that affected aircraft manufacturers, suppliers and operators. With demand for air travel closely linked to economic growth, we anticipate continued volatility in the aerospace industry in the near term. However, despite the current recession, the market fundamentals are strong in the long term. As the world begins to emerge from this economic crisis, demand should gradually return and future prospects remain solid,” said Mairead Lavery, Vice-President, Strategy and Business Development, Bombardier Aerospace. In the 10-year period from 2009 to 2018, the Bombardier Business Aircraft Market Forecast predicts that business jet manufacturers will deliver a total of 11,500 aircraft with revenues of approximately $256 billion US for the industry. While in the short term the industry faces such important challenges as high pre-owned inventories, negative public perceptions and a difficult economic climate, Bombardier remains confident that there is a strong potential for the business aircraft industry over the next 10 years. The anticipated return of global economic growth is expected to result in a strong recovery in the demand for business jets. Bombardier Commercial Aircraft Market Forecast has demand for 20- to 149-seat commercial aircraft at 12,400 new aircraft deliveries in the 20-year period from 2009 to 2028. Despite a slight adjustment in demand from last year's forecast, the long term fundamentals within the industry remain positive. The forecasted demand is valued at approximately $589 billion US. Continued downward yield pressure, projected fuel price increases and environmental concerns will reinforce operators' requirement for modern aircraft with low operating costs. As a result, we anticipate a trend towards the right-sizing of more fuel-efficient aircraft types and a significant number of retirements. Sixty per cent, or 6,900 units, of the current 20- to 149-seat market are expected to be retired over the period of the forecast.
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Airbus announced the signature of a cooperation agreement with Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) on the cooperative research activities in the field of composite materials.  An official ceremony was held at the Paris Air Show on Friday in the presence of Dr. Takashi Ishikawa, JAXA's Executive Director for Aviation Program Group, and Christian Scherer, Head of Strategy & Future Programs of Airbus.  This agreement marks the first ever research cooperation between Airbus and a Japanese aerospace agency. Two areas already identified are VaRTM (Vacuum assisted Resin Transfer Moulding) evaluation and NDI (Non-destructive inspection) new technology evaluation for composite materials. Once the first cooperation phase is successfully concluded, Airbus and JAXA intend to extend it further to other areas. Research areas may include the application of innovative breakthrough technologies in aerospace.
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United Technologies President and Chief Executive Officer Louis Chenevert and Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Greg Hayes will meet today with investors at the Paris Air Show. They will reaffirm UTC's expectations for 2009 revenues of approximately $55 billion, earnings per share in the range of $4.00 to $4.50, and cash flow from operations less capital expenditures equal to or in excess of net income attributable to common shareowners.
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The major components of the first S-70i BLACK HAWK helicopter have been joined at PZL Mielec in Poland, marking the first time a BLACK HAWK helicopter has been assembled outside the United States and signaling a major step forward in producing BLACK HAWK helicopters internationally, Sikorsky announced. The first major join of components was completed earlier this month when the first cabin produced at Mielec was fitted to a Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) tail cone and a cockpit section produced by Kaman Aerospace, Jacksonville, Fla., USA. First announced in 2006 at the Farnborough International Air Show, the S-70i BLACK HAWK helicopter will be produced utilizing a cost-effective global supply chain and delivered from outside the United States to international customers. The S-70i BLACK HAWK helicopter will provide multi-mission, 10-ton utility lift capability at a price comparable to helicopters in the 6-to-8-ton class.
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Sikorsky and Elbit Systems announced successful completion of the test phase for the Armed BLACK HAWK (ABH) demonstrator helicopter, also known as the BATTLEHAWK helicopter. Achieving this milestone clears the way for Sikorsky to begin offering production proposals for customers to convert existing BLACK HAWK helicopters or order new production aircraft in the armed configuration. The testing phase was conducted to establish the safe operation of the weapons and weapons management system, as well as to gather data on the systems. An optical missile, a laser-guided rocket, and a 20-mm turreted gun were all fired successfully. The demonstrator configuration also includes Elbit cockpit displays, a Mission Management system with Digital Map, Forward-Looking Infrared (FLIR) and ANVIS/HUD helmet systems with cueing capabilities integrated into the avionics suite. The demonstrator completed its first flight on Sept. 9, 2008 at the Elbit Systems' Cyclone facility in Israel.
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Sikorsky announced that it has delivered the first UH-60M helicopter to the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation. The delivery marks the first UH-60M aircraft to enter service outside of the U.S. Army. The FBI is expected to take delivery of a total of three UH-60M aircraft this year. The helicopters will allow the FBI to modernize its rotary wing fleet and achieve its agency mission requirements.
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Forecast International's "The Market for Large Commercial Jet Transports" predicts that 9,879 large commercial jet transports will be produced from 2009 through 2018. The Connecticut-based market research firm estimates the value of this production, as calculated in constant 2009 U.S. dollars, at some $1.16 trillion. The study indicates that yearly production of large jetliners will decline each year through 2012, but then rebound in 2013, kicking off a new recovery in airliner production. With the large airliner market essentially a duopoly, Airbus and Boeing are projected to account for nearly 99 percent of the forecast production. The study also examines market prospects for aircraft from other players in the market, including current and emerging competitors within the Russian and Chinese industries. According to Forecast International, large jetliner production by Boeing during the 2009-2018 timeframe will total 5,152 aircraft, worth $616 million. Airbus production during the same period is forecast to total 4,611 aircraft, valued at $539 million. The large commercial jetliner market is currently being battered by such factors as general economic decline, near-frozen financial markets, falling air traffic, slumping order rates, and mounting order cancellations and deferrals.
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Vision Systems International (VSI) has received several new contracts with a total value of $54.1 million. Lockheed Martin awarded VSI a contract for the delivery of 52 F-35 Gen II Helmet Mounted Displays and 30 aircraft shipsets in support of the F-35 Lightning II Helmet Mounted Display System (HMDS) program. VSI also received contracts for production tooling and initial funding for the Pilot Fit Facility Standup at Eglin Air Force Base for the HMDS program. Under the low rate initial production (LRIP) contract, VSI will provide HMDS hardware and production tooling for the LRIP 1, 2 and 3 acquisitions. This procurement fills initial U.S. government domestic requirements for the U.S. Air Force F-35A, U.S. Marine Corps F-35B and U.S. Navy F 35C platforms, as well as some foreign military sales production commitments. LRIP deliveries will commence this year and continue through 2012. "With this first HMD LRIP contract for the F-35, VSI is now delivering the world's most advanced helmet display for the latest fifth generation fighter," said VSI President Drew Brugal. "The system provides the F-35 warfighter with unmatched situational awareness throughout the operational profile of the jet. By keeping 'eyes out' while viewing all critical information and video on the helmet visor, the pilot has a significant advantage in both air-to-air and air-to-ground mission execution." The F-35 Gen II HMDS displays biocular video and symbology information on the helmet visor providing the pilot with all information necessary to execute both day and night missions under a single integrated configuration. The system enables the pilot to accurately cue onboard weapons and sensors by looking at enemy aircraft and ground targets with the helmet display. The HMD also allows the aircraft systems to alert the pilot of potential threats and hazards, significantly improving situational awareness. Advanced night imagery is provided by the helmet mounted night camera and aircraft Distributed Aperture System (DAS). The F-35 Gen II HMDS's accuracy and very low latency allows it to become the HUD replacement. The F-35 is the first front line tactical aircraft in decades that does not have a traditional HUD. The HMDS is the "virtual" HUD of the aircraft, reducing aircraft weight and improving aircraft affordability.
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Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has signed a contract to supply a HAROP Loitering Munition (LM) system to a foreign customer. The contract is estimated to be worth over $100 million. Itzhak Nissan, President and CEO of IAI said: "HAROP is an extremely impressive system, and everyone at IAI is proud of this accomplishment. This is a state-of-the-art loitering munition system, which features accurate detection capabilities and minimizes collateral damage to the surrounding area." Separately, the German Armed Forces and the German Ministry of Defense (MOD) have approved an operational requirement utilizing IAI's HAROP system. The project will be implemented in cooperation with Rheinmetall Defense as the prime contractor. The German MOD has already invested funds for the adaptation of HAROP to its specific requirements. Part of the adaptation was successfully performed by a joint IAI/Rheinmetall Defense team, and a follow on contract is planned for this year. This activity is a reflection of the successful cooperation between IAI and Rheinmetall Defense, which has also included projects involving Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).
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Rafael Advanced Defense Systems released the Recce-U, persistent, unmanned, surveillance and reconnaissance system at the Paris Air Show next week. Recce-U is a self-contained, multi-sensor ISR system for the UAV platform, based on the RecceLite tactical reconnaissance pod for combat aircraft. Recce-U simultaneously collects high-resolution infrared and visual digital images, day and night, within a very wide field of regard, in accordance with an automatic mission plan and/or manual operation, and transmits the images, which are then viewed and interpreted in real time at the ground exploitation station. The Recce-U system comprises a persistant ISR payload, Ground Data Link Station (GDLS) and Ground Exploitation Station (GES). The Reccu-U system is revolutionary in that the inertial LOS control enables routine scanning of extremely wide areas irrespective of the UAVs maneuvers and facillitates IED detection as well.
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The Annual Report on offset performance for 2008 has been approved by the Czech Ministry of Defence. The report concluded that the Gripen industrial co-operation programme in the Czech Republic generated CZK 4.94 billion in export value for the country. This accounts for 19 percent of the total offset obligation. Since the start of the programme in 2004, the cumulative offset value generated reached CZK 16.24 billion as of 31 December 2008. This signifies a 63.5 percent completion of the total offset obligation contracted.
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Delta Air Lines has signed a 10-year OnPointSM solution agreement with GE Aviation for the maintenance and overhaul of the GE90-110B1L2 engines, powering its entire Boeing 777-200LR fleet. "We are pleased to enter this agreement with General Electric," said Bob Currey, Delta TechOps Managing Director - Supply Chain. "GE is an established engine maintenance provider that has partnered with Delta to help us maintain a safe and reliable 777-200 LR fleet."
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Bombardier Aerospace announced another 17 suppliers for the CSeries aircraft program. These suppliers join others which were previously announced, and will contribute significantly to the development of the CSeries aircraft which are optimized for the longer range, single-aisle, 100- to 145-seat market. The CSeries aircraft is scheduled to enter service in 2013. CAE of Montreal, Canada will first provide a comprehensive suite of engineering services and simulation-based technology tools to support the design, testing and certification of the CSeries aircraft platform as part of Bombardier's Complete Integrated Aircraft Systems Test Area (CIASTA) program. Thereafter, CAE will build prototype CSeries aircraft Full Flight Simulator and CAE Simfinity devices. Esterline Control Systems-Korry of Bellevue, Washington, USA will provide integrated cockpit control panels for the CSeries aircraft. Goodrich has been selected to provide its next-generation SmartProbe(TM) air data system, ice detection system and external, cockpit and maintenance lighting systems for the CSeries aircraft. Hamilton Sundstrand will be providing the electrical system for the CSeries aircraft. As such, Hamilton Sundstrand will be responsible for designing and qualifying the electric power generation system, as well as the primary and secondary power distribution systems. Honeywell will provide the inertial reference system (IRS) and the auxiliary power unit (APU) for the CSeries aircraft. Kidde Aerospace & Defense, a Hamilton Sundstrand business will be responsible for the integrated fire protection system for the CSeries aircraft. L-3 Aviation Recorders (L-3AR), a division of L-3 Communications, will design, develop, qualify and manufacture the state-of-the-art voice and flight data recording system for the CSeries aircraft. Liebherr-Aerospace Lindenberg GmbH of Germany will be responsible for the design and manufacture of the complete landing gears system which includes the main and nose landing gears, the landing gear control and indication system, the alternate release system, the proximity sensing system and the steering control system. Magnaghi & Salver will provide composite inboard/outboard flaps, spoilers and main landing gear doors for the CSeries aircraft. Meggitt Aircraft Braking Systems (MABS) will be responsible for the design, development and manufacture of the wheels, electro-mechanically actuated carbon brakes, and the brake control system for the CSeries aircraft. Panasonic Avionics has been selected to supply the Cabin Management and Passenger Address System (CMS). Parker Air & Fuel Division will be responsible for the design and manufacture of the fuel tank inerting system. Senior Aerospace BWT will be responsible for the design and manufacturing of the low pressure air distribution systems for the CSeries aircraft cabin and cockpit environmental control systems (ECS). Senior Aerospace SSP will be responsible for the design and manufacturing of the high pressure (HP) bleed air and ram air ducting systems for the CSeries aircraft. Sonaca of Gosselies, Belgium will supply the fixed leading edges, slats and tracks for the CSeries aircraft wings. Spirit AeroSystems will be responsible for the design, manufacturing and testing of the complete pylons for the CSeries aircraft program. Woodward MPC will be responsible for the design and production of the throttle quadrant assembly (TQA) which acts as the direct link for the control of the engine thrust and is located in the cockpit suite.
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Raytheon, with its teammate XRDi, completed testing of its KillerBee unmanned aircraft system heavy fuel engine. KillerBee's purpose-built HFE is highly efficient and reliable compared with conventional gasoline engines converted to burn heavy fuels. The KillerBee UAS features a blended-wing body design and systems for launch, recovery and ground control on land and sea. It has the ability to insert persistent intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance into the battlespace and is ideally suited for force protection in an expeditionary environment.
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Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC) announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Swiss-based rotary engine manufacturer MISTRAL Engines. The agreement indicates MISTRAL's commitment to expand its production and development capacity including, flight test programmes, within the new aerospace cluster at Al Ain, the second largest city in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The ceremonial signing took place in front of a number of dignitaries at the Paris Air Show, Le Bourget. Earlier this week, ADAC announced a landmark agreement to develop a major aviation and aerospace centre at Al Ain International Airport in the Middle East. The MOU between ADAC and MISTRAL Engines establishes the framework to allow the two parties to explore opportunities for the development and production of MISTRAL's products in Al Ain. It is anticipated that this MOU will lead to the establishment of a research centre and production facility at the new Al Ain Aerospace Cluster.
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Elbit Systems inaugurated the Beechcraft King Air B200 "Tzofit" training center for Israeli Air Force (IAF) pilots. At the heart of the training center is the advanced flight simulator. The new training center is operated through a PFI (Private Financing Initiative) program, with an inclusive Elbit Systems solution that includes the establishment of the training center, its operation, and the supply of trainers and training services, as well as maintenance for a 10-year period. The Israel Ministry of Defense will purchase training hours for the IAF from Elbit Systems. As the IAF's pilots commence training at the facility, Elbit Systems is planning an extensive training program that will also include civil aviation pilots, both from Israel and from abroad. Elbit Systems expects in the near future to conclude the licensing process for the training of civil aviation pilots, the highest FAA licensing level for flight trainers (Full Flight Simulator – Level D).
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Aero Vodochody made its highest profit in the last six years, USD 23.6 million. The revenue of Aero was approximately USD 250 million. "In 2008, Aero made a higher profit than in 2007 which confirms that the privatization and the following stabilization of the Company in 2007 were successful. Now we focus on our strategic aim: to be the preferred partner in first-class projects of leading aerospace manufacturers, to participate in risk-sharing projects and offer reliable services and advanced products in the global aerospace and defense industry," says Igor Hulak, President of Aero. "Aero will keep developing its current potential organically, by innovation and investment in advanced technologies, as well as through international acquisitions. Through acquisitions, we are going to build a new European aerospace group in the CEE region," adds Igor Hulak. The revenues in 2008 were mainly influenced by the aerostructures programs, especially the production and sale of the Sikorsky helicopters: more than 50 S-76C++ helicopters and one S-76D prototype were delivered to Sikorsky Aircraft. The companies also together celebrated a jubilee delivery of the 250th helicopter produced by Aero. As for the other aerostructures programs, the Alenia Aeronautica C-27J Program, producing the whole center wing box, the F/A-18 Program (gun bay door for Boeing), subassemblies of Airbus aircraft for EADS or Embraer door subassemblies for Latecoere played the major part in the revenue generation. The Military Program contributed 12 % of the revenue. This was generated mainly through our unique position in supporting the Czech Air Force in its successful L-159 operation as well as continued support of Aero military aircraft in service worldwide.
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Frankfurt Airport's (FRA) traffic development during the past three months - especially compared to figures at the beginning of the year - continues to provide optimism. In particular, the decline in aircraft movements as well as airfreight and airmail continued to slow slightly. Aircraft movements dropped only 4.4 percent year-on-year to 40,666 takeoffs and landings. With 146,259 metric tons in May 2009, FRA's airfreight slowdown narrowed to 17.1 percent. At 2.37 million metric tons, maximum takeoff weights (MTOWs) were only 4.8 percent below the comparable month last year. FRA served a total of 4.4 million passengers last month, down 6.3 percent year-on-year.
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A Search and Rescue (SAR) S-92 helicopter operating in the United Kingdom has reached the operational milestone of 1,000 flight hours as the SAR services provided by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) and under the operation of CHC Helicopter Corp. continue to operate at availability levels of 98 percent. CHC Search and Rescue operates four SAR S-92 helicopters from two bases covering territory in the North Atlantic and the North Sea. In Stornoway, Western Isles, Scotland, the fleet has conducted 244 rescue missions, while missions flown out of Sumburgh, Shetland Isles, Scotland, have totaled 150 to date. Aircraft technical availability at both bases has been 98 percent, said Ian McLuskie, UK SAR Manager, CHC Search and Rescue.
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Teal Group forecasts production of 2,909 regional aircraft worth $65.9 billion between 2009 and 2018. This includes 1,732 regional jets worth $46.9 billion, and 1,177 turboprops worth $19 billion. These numbers are all in 2009 dollars. "These numbers represent 8% shrinkage relative to the previous ten years (1999-2008), which were basically the glory days for this market," said Richard Aboulafia, Teal Group's Vice President - Analysis. "Production during that time totaled 3,563 aircraft worth $71.7 billion, comprising 2,791 regional jets worth $61.1 billion, and 772 turboprops worth $10.6 billion." Again, these figures are all in 2009 dollars.
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Embraer and KLM Cityhopper, KLM's regional subsidiary, signed a contract for another seven EMBRAER 190 jets, confirming the options in the original contract, announced in August 2007. The Dutch airline still has 11 options to buy Embraer jets. The initial deliveries of this new order should take place during the first semester of 2010. "We could not be more honored and proud than we are of this confirmation by KLM Cityhopper and the AIR FRANCE KLM Group," said Mauro Kern, Embraer Executive Vice President, Airline Market. "With this deal, KLM, which is one of the world's most admired and respected airline companies, confirms that the E-Jets are the aircraft of choice for modernizing its regional fleet."
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A new generation of greener, quieter and more efficient aircraft moved a step closer, when the Clean Sky initiative launched a call for proposals for aeronautical R&D for a total value of over €25 million. Clean Sky is a first-of-its-kind EU wide collaborative private-public partnership, including the participation of SMEs, universities and research centres as well as of leading aeronautics manufacturers. This call is the first in what will be one of Europe's biggest ever research projects, with €1.6 billion to be invested up to 2014. “The new step taken today by Clean Sky highlights the joint commitment of the European Commission and the European air transport industry to develop breakthrough technologies to significantly reduce the impact of air transport on the environment and strengthen the competitiveness of this vital sector for Europe's economy,” stated EU Commissioner for Research Janez Potoènik. Through the Clean Sky initiative the European Commission and the EU air transport industry have joined forces to resolutely address the challenges of air pollution, noise and climate change. Clean Sky's objective is to demonstrate and validate the technology breakthroughs needed to reach Europe's key environmental goals for air transport for 2020: these are 50% reduction of CO2 emissions through drastic reduction of fuel consumption; 80% reduction of NOx (nitrogen oxide) emissions; and 50% reduction of external noise.
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Premium AEROTEC delivered the door frame shell for the CFRP fuselage demonstrator from Nordenham to Airbus Operations GmbH in Hamburg for structural testing today on schedule. This marks another major milestone on the way towards serial production for the A350 XWB at Premium AEROTEC. The aerospace supplier, founded in January 2009, is the main aerostructure supplier for this new family of Airbus aircraft. The complex shells will be certified for the A350 XWB program together with the CFRP barrel. In addition to the structural test, this project serves to bring the production processes and the staff qualifications to industrial maturity. Innovative technology, proved skills and know-how are key to successful production of the fuselage sections at Premium AEROTEC for this new Airbus program.
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The German aerostructures supplier Premium AEROTEC succeeded in 20 months to develop and deliver the first Barrier Wall for the new Airbus A330-200 freighter version. This complex structure, to be installed between freight compartment and the cockpit, is safeguarding the aircraft's crew in case of a shifting load. Having a weight of 430 kilograms only, the Barrier Wall is able to catch load impacts of up to 340 tons. Premium AEROTEC has completed this structure in the record time of 20 months between order and delivery; now completely installed, it will be shipped to the Airbus assembly line.
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At the 2009 Paris Air Show, European Investment Bank Vice President Philippe de Fontaine Vive and SAFRAN Chief Executive Officer Jean-Paul Herteman signed a contract to provide 300 million euros in financing to the SAFRAN group for the development of a new generation of cleaner aircraft engines. The EIB loan will be used to finance Research & Development on aircraft engines that use less fuel and are friendlier to the environment. SAFRAN group company Snecma is aiming to develop a successor to the CFM56 engine (jointly produced with General Electric), designed for single-aisle commercial jets with 110 to 210 seats, that will offer a 16% reduction in fuel consumption, 15 to 20 decibel decrease in noise, and 60% reduction in oxides of nitrogen (NOx). At the same time Snecma is also working on a new technology, the open rotor configuration, that would eventually reduce both fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by more than 25%. The total cost of the R&D project is estimated at 600 million euros.
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As in 2008, Munich Airport has again achieved the number five position in the World Airport Awards 2009, securing its status as one of the world's best airports. In the global rankings, only Seoul, Hong Kong, Singapore and Zurich scored higher than Munich. With this result, the Bavarian hub was outranked by another European airport for the first time since it began its reign of four consecutive years as the European champion. The survey, which was conducted by Skytrax, a London-based independent aviation research institute, had a total of 8.6 million respondents – more than in any previous year. "We are very pleased to see that we have obviously been successful in maintaining our high service and quality standards even when measured against the world's best," commented Dr Michael Kerkloh, the CEO of FMG, the Munich Airport operating company. He added, "I'd like to extend my congratulations to our colleagues in Zurich for their strong performance. Naturally this is an incentive for us to take the title back to Bavaria again next year."
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The Swedish Chief Prosecutor Christer van der Kwast has decided to close the preliminary investigation into Saab concerning alleged illegal methods in connection with the sale of Gripen. “The decision is fully in line with what we have claimed all along”, says Cecilia Schön Jansson, Communications Director at Saab. “No illegal methods have been forthcoming from Saab, and this is strengthened by the fact that the Chief Prosecutor now decided to close the investigation.” Saab says that the laws and regulations in connection with the sale of Gripen have been followed by the company. Business ethics is a matter of great relevance to Saab. For example Saab's employees have been trained in Saabs Code of Conduct. “We now can put this behind us, and we want to convey this message to all our customers, employees and shareholders, says Cecilia Schön Jansson.
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Lockheed Martin has successfully fired the DAGR rocket system from an AH-64D Apache helicopter. The testing marked the first airborne platform tests for DAGR, demonstrating its ability to engage targets in both day and night conditions. The testing was conducted at U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground, AZ, by a combined team of Lockheed Martin, Boeing and U.S. Army Aviation Technical Test Center personnel. During testing, three rockets were fired from the Apache helicopter; two successfully impacted the targets within minimal distance of the designated aimpoint. DAGR is now 10-for-11 in guided test flights and 14-for-15 overall.
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Bombardier Aerospace announced that MIG Aviation 3 Limited, a subsidiary of Marfin Investment Group Holdings S.A. of Greece, has signed a firm order for eight Q400 aircraft, including five Q400 NextGen airliners, and has taken options on an additional eight Q400 NextGen airliners. Based on the list prices for the Q400 and Q400 NextGen airliners, the value of the firm order contract is approximately $224 million US and could increase to $468 million US if the eight options are exercised. The Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft will be operated by Pantheon Airways under the Olympic Air brand name. Pantheon Airways acquired certain assets of Olympic Airlines and Olympic Airways from the Government of Greece earlier this year.
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The new Euroflir 350 optronic observation system made by Sagem (SAFRAN group) has been selected by Eurocopter for the EC725 Caracal helicopters deployed by French armed forces. The Euroflir 350 system for the Caracal is designed for the most demanding missions. It is coupled with the Sigma navigation system, also supplied by Sagem. The Euroflir 350 comprises: latest-generation Matis high-resolution infrared imager, high-definition color nighttime channel, eye-safe laser rangefinder and laser pointer, along with tracking, automatic search and geo-location functions. The Euroflir 350 will expand the EC725 Caracal's day/night operational capabilities to carry out various missions, including transport, medical evacuation, combat search & rescue, intelligence, ground target designation and positioning.
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NASA postponed the launch of space shuttle Endeavour's STS-127 mission Wednesday because of a leak associated with the gaseous hydrogen venting system outside the shuttle's external fuel tank. Endeavour's next launch opportunity is July 11. This date comes after the end of an orbital sun-angle condition called a beta angle cut-out, which occurs between June 22 and July 10. The cut-out creates a thermal condition that prohibits shuttle and space station docked operations. The gaseous hydrogen venting system is used to carry excess hydrogen safely away from the launch pad. Wednesday's leak is similar to one that prevented Endeavour's launch on June 13.
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Chennai based Paramount Airways, one of India's leading domestic premium airlines has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to buy ten A321 aircraft with an option for an additional ten. The agreement was concluded at the 48th Le Bourget air show outside Paris. Mr M Thiagarajan, Paramount Airways Managing Director said,” today marks an important and strategic landmark in our expansion plans and in particular our goal to become a leading international carrier. The Airbus A321 will help us realise these ambitious and attainable goals and we are delighted with our aircraft choice.”
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Airbus and Condor have announced the first ever contract to retrofit for A320 Family currently in operation the new Enhanced Cabin – only previously seen inside aircraft recently delivered fresh from the production line. The Condor fleet of 12 A320s will be the first in-service to benefit, with first installations planned for the fourth quarter of this year. The Enhanced Cabin provides 10 per cent greater stowage volume for overhead baggage, more shoulder-level room for passengers, a fresh modern ambience using LED lighting, and all while making best use of latest technologies, materials and design. As an added bonus it also brings a weight reduction. Charles Champion, Executive Vice President of Customer Services says: “It is great to design innovative new solutions that can also benefit our in-service aircraft. In a very challenging market we are always pleased to offer something for our customers to gain a competitive edge”. To consolidate the new cabin experience, Airbus will also integrate the installation of the innovative CIDS (Cabin Intercommunication Data System) and a new in-flight entertainment system on the 12 Airbus A320 Family aircraft including video and audio services.
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The French Ministry of Defence appointed the DIRISI (Joint Directorate for Defence Infrastructure Networks and Information Systems) late in April to notify the whole ASTEL-S market to Astrium services. his 4-year contract is meant to supply French forces worldwide with tailor-made civilian (Ku, Ka, C) and military (UHF, X) satellite communications complementary to Syracuse. All demands will be processed by a single interlocutor, 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. This market follows the first ASTEL-S market notified in May, 2005 by the Ministry of Defence. According to the DIRISI's appraisal, the Ministry of Defence's requirements could amount to 100MHz in space capacity. This new ASTEL-S market includes the furniture of space capacities in UHF and Ka bands as well as supplementary teleport services worldwide and the possibility to redirect data streams towards metropolitan MoD sites.
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The first single-seat Gripen C destined for the South African Air Force flew for the first time on Thursday 11th June. The aircraft, number 39.2101, was flown by Saab test pilot Richard Ljungberg. It took off from Saab's facility at Linköping in Sweden at 13.00 and touched down safely back at Linköping at 14.03 in the afternoon. The aircraft will undergo a short flight test programme ahead of delivery to South Africa. South Africa has ordered 17 Gripen C and 9 dual-seat Gripen D fighters under a comprehensive military transformation and modernisation programme.
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After analyzing more than 2,000 data points from more than 400 hours of testing, Pratt & Whitney confirmed that the PurePower PW1000G demonstration engine met all program objectives including performance, efficiency, acoustics and overall operational characteristics. The PW1000G engine, with Pratt & Whitney's patented Geared Turbofan(tm) technology, targets double-digit reductions in fuel burn, environmental emissions, engine noise and operating costs. "The PW1000G demonstrator successfully completed a comprehensive four-phase test program, validating laboratory results obtained in 2007 and 2008," said Bob Saia, vice president, Next Generation Product Family, Pratt & Whitney. "We ran a very challenging test program subjecting this engine demonstrator to the same tests required for airplane flight certification. This unprecedented demonstration program provides critical engine data prior to the PW1000G engine entering detailed design later this year."
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AirAsia X, the long haul low cost affiliate of Malaysia's AirAsia Group, has placed a firm order with Airbus for 10 A350 XWB aircraft. The airline will use the aircraft on a network linking its Asian hub in Kuala Lumpur with destinations worldwide, especially in Europe and Australia. AirAsia X has selected the A350-900 variant for its fleet, which will be configured to seat more than 400 passengers in a two-class layout.
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Consolidation of the Russian helicopter industry has entered its final stage. The Russian Helicopters managing company is aggressively developing its research and production capacity. It is finishing its own R&D centre in Moscow's suburban Panki. Its new engineering centre, test production line, and research centre are nearing completion. "We are objective in our evaluation of all that has happened to the Russian economy in recent years, particularly in helicopter manufacture," Andrei Shibitov, CEO, Russian Helicopters, said. "Plenty of Russian-made helicopters that are being operated around the globe were manufactured in the distant times when the Soviet helicopter industry blossomed. Even now modifications of these helicopters still cover certain market segments. We are working on identifying the product line we be working with. We realize it's difficult to compete with helicopter manufacturers on the global market without light and medium models in our product line." The company has developed a production pattern, modernization program and identified its business approach in terms of areas of expertise and competence of production units. The new industry pattern envisions that production facilities will ensure competitive advantages of the Russian industry both now and in the future. In expanding the product line, the company is poised for breakthrough with its new high-speed helicopter concept and the concept's development and marketing programme. This will be an advanced product backed by key technologies within the 2015-2020 timeframe.
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MTU Aero Engines will take a stake in Saudi Arabia-based Middle East Propulsion Company (MEPC). The deal was announced by Germany's leading engine manufacturer at the Paris Air Show in Le Bourget. According to MTU CEO Egon Behle, a contract has already been signed: "This is a first important step for us towards building a presence in the Middle East, considering that this is a region of growing importance. With this development in mind, we have decided to acquire a stake in MEPC." MEPC is a joint venture between United Technologies International Corporation a subsidiary of United Technologies Corporation of which Pratt and Whitney is a division, Saudi Arabian Airlines and Shomoukh al Hemman for Communication and Information Co. Ltd.. It specializes in the maintenance of aircraft engines. Its major customer is the Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF), which has the Pratt & Whitney F100 engines powering its Boeing F-15 fighter jets maintained by MEPC. The company plans to expand its maintenance portfolio to include modules of the Tornado's RB199 engine and the Eurofighter's EJ200 engine as well as the T56 for the Hercules C-130 transport aircraft and the PT6 that powers various helicopters and propeller aircraft. Another new stakeholder alongside MTU is U.S.-based Wamar International.
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Boeing will dedicate funding to further development of the F-15 Silent Eagle program, with the goal of a flight demonstration in the third quarter of 2010. The announcement came at the Paris Air Show following meetings with potential customers and reaffirmed a commitment to the prototype program made by Boeing Integrated Defense Systems President and CEO Jim Albaugh at the air show on June 14. The F-15 Silent Eagle, which Boeing launched in March, advances the most modern variants of the F-15 multi-role strike fighter with enhanced survivability. Features include a digital electronic warfare suite coupled to an Advanced Electronically Scanned Array radar for enhanced situational awareness, aerodynamic improvements and cost-effective radar cross-section reduction technologies.
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Boeing and a team from across the aviation industry released high-level elements of a study that shows that sustainable biofuels analyzed in a series of pioneering test flights performed favorably in comparison to petroleum-based fuel. According to the study, Evaluation of Bio-Derived Synthetic Paraffinic Kerosene (Bio-SPK), a series of laboratory, ground and flight tests conducted between 2006 and 2009 indicated the test fuels performed as well as or better than typical petroleum-based Jet A. The testing included several commercial airplane engine types using blends of up to 50 percent petroleum-based Jet A/Jet A-1 fuel and 50 percent sustainable biofuels. In addition, the study showed the Bio-SPK fuel blends used in the test flight program met or exceeded all technical parameters for commercial jet aviation fuel. Those standards include freezing point, flash point, fuel density and viscosity, among others. The tests revealed that using the Bio-SPK fuel blends had no adverse effects on the engines or their components. They also showed that the fuels have greater energy content by mass than typical petroleum-derived jet fuel - which potentially could lower fuel consumption per mile. Renewable jet fuels from bio-derived sources are being considered because of their ability to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.
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As part of the International Paris Air Show, the Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company and the Investment Financial Company Avialeasing announced the signature of the contract for the delivery of 24 Sukhoi Superjet 100/95B aircraft. The contract, fixing agreements reached last year at Farnborough, is valued at 715 mln. USD in catalogue prices. Under the Contract signed by Victor Soubbotin, President of Sukhoi Civil Aircraft, and Victor Novikov, Vice-president of Avialeasing, SSJ100s will be delivered through 2011-2013. Currently the firm order portfolio for the Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft totals 122 units.
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Thales is developing a new version of its multifunction targeting pod, Damocles XF, to provide air and naval air forces with a solution boasting unparalleled performance. This new version is expected to be up and running in 2012 and will incorporate, in particular, new communication means and an enhanced identification system, thereby improving its effectiveness irrespective of the environment. The development of the Damocles XF benefits directly from investments and state-of-the-art technologies in software and optronics components. For this, Thales is relying in particular on Advanced Research Programs (ARP) like AIDA and MASTRID, financed by the French Defense Procurement Agency.
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The European Commission has authorised, under the EC Treaty rules on state aid, a repayable advance of SEK 304 million (approx. EUR 33 million) that Sweden intends to grant to Volvo Aero Corporation for the research and development of GEnx aircraft engine components. The GEnx engine is being developed by General Electric for the Boeing B787 and B747-8 aeroplanes. After an in-depth investigation, launched in July 2008, the Commission found that the project complies with the requirements of the EU framework for state aid for Research, Development and Innovation. In particular, the aid addresses a market failure, it enables Volvo Aero to carry out additional research and the aid amount is proportionate to the nature of the market failure.
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Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala), the development and investment company that is a catalyst for the economic diversification of the emirate of Abu Dhabi, today announced that construction of its Abu Dhabi Composites plant will start within two weeks and that the plant will be operational next year. The development of a thriving international aerospace hub in Abu Dhabi, with a focus on knowledge-transfer, technology and innovation, is a key element of the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030. Mubadala is bringing together existing aerospace assets and forming industrial partnerships to build a high technology knowledge intensive aerospace industry for Abu Dhabi. The new plant will be called Strata and construction of phase one - a state of the art, 21,600m_ facility - will commence on June 29th 2009, with the manufacturing of advanced composite aerostructures beginning in Q4 2010. Subsequent phases of expansion are planned to provide a total facility in excess of 60,000m_ over the next few years.
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Patria delivered the first serial production upgraded Hawk to the Finnish Air Force (FINAF) on 16 June 2009 at the Paris Air Show at 11 am Static Display area A116. The FINAF has decided to upgrade part of its Mk51 fleet and the program is centred on an aircraft glass cockpit systems integration solution designed and implemented by Patria. The FINAF Hawk fleet consists primarily of Mk51 series aircraft which were supplemented by purchasing eighteen pre-owned Mk66s with plenty of flight hours remaining from the Swiss Air Force in 2007. The FINAF is planning to use Hawks for fast jet training for another two decades. The upgrade involves the merging of several modern computer-based systems and equipment with the existing avionics and other hardware. The glass cockpit modification will improve the quality of fighter pilot training significantly. All required validation and verification flight tests have been successfully executed as planned and the serial production is now ongoing.
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On the occasion of a press conference held today at the Paris Air show, Stéphane Mayer, ATR Chief Executive Officer, announced ATR orders for 28 new aircraft in the first half of 2009, thus bringing to 998 the total of new ATRs booked since the beginning of the programme. Commenting on the orders, Stéphane Mayer declared: “The announcement of bookings for 28 new aircraft in the first half of the year is a clear message of confidence of our customers in the ATR product, and underlines that our aircraft are optimally positioned to answer the current and future needs of regional operators”. He also noted that the new -600 series order book stands already at 59 orders and the customer response has been very positive to the new developments. Stéphane Mayer also underlined the stabilization of the annual delivery rates, with a forecast of over 50 aircraft to be delivered in 2009. He said: “We have decided to stabilize our annual deliveries, which are already at a historically high level, to optimally answer to the present context and to optimize our production costs. We are secure with a very healthy backlog of 170 aircraft on order, thus ensuring 3 years of production. We have experienced a very strong industrial development in the last few years in order to answer to the revival of the demand for turboprops. Despite today's market difficult situation, we know the demand is here for the long term, and we are ready to continue our growth and to further increase our production once the economy will recover.”
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Sikorsky Global Helicopters announced preparations for delivery of the first two military S-434 helicopters to the Saudi Ministry of Interior (MOI). These two aircraft signify the beginning of the Saudi MOI light helicopter fleet, which will total nine aircraft upon contract completion. In addition to the aircraft, Sikorsky Global Helicopters will provide a complete logistical support package including spare parts, special tools, factory training for pilots and mechanics and in-country technical support and pilot instructor. The procedural IFR-equipped aircraft will be configured for both training and patrol missions. “With these deliveries, the S-434 helicopter will turn a page in its early history, since these are the first military versions of this aircraft,” said David Horton, General Manager of Sikorsky Global Helicopter's Light Helicopter Division, located in Horseheads, N.Y. “We are proud to begin this partnership with the MOI and look forward to the further growth of this product line.”
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Doha-based national carrier, Qatar Airways, has signed a firm contract for 24 Airbus A320 Family aircraft. The agreement includes the firming up of a contract for four A321 aircraft announced at the Farnborough Air show in July 2008. Qatar Airways currently operates 19 A320 Family aircraft, the Middle East's largest fleet. The new aircraft configured with a two-class cabin will be deployed to enhance and expand services on regional, Eastern European and south west Asia services.
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On June 15th 2009 at the Paris Le Bourget Air Show Mr. Dmytro Kiva, General Designer of Antonov ASTC (Ukraine) and Mr. Mick Milne, Marketing and Business Development Director of Marshall Aerospace (England) signed a Teaming Agreement. Under this agreement the parties will combine their respective and complementary skills, capabilities and expertise, initially in the field of Antonov aircraft modifications to meet customer requirements. The initial joint project will address the provision of an in-flight refuelling capability for AN-74 aircraft. In addition, the Companies will interact in the organisation of maintenance and integrated operational support of Antonov aircraft.
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Securing deliveries, assisting customers and managing the order book are Airbus' priorities for 2009 according to President and CEO Tom Enders, who briefed international reporters during the company's traditional Paris Air Show press conference. Enders said the future for Airbus is good, with sufficient ongoing demand to fill orders for its eco-efficient aircraft - which will be supported by prudent adaptations in aircraft production output. For 2009, the company is expecting to make approximately the same number of aircraft deliveries as last year, with the production rate currently standing at 34 single-aisle A320s per month, 8.5 widebody A330s/A340s monthly, and 14 A380s to be built during the 12 months. Airbus' current focus is on transitioning its order backlog into deliveries, and Enders expressed confidence the air transport sector will remain a long-term growth industry with strong underlying demand.
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ARINC Direct and Rockwell Collins announced the successful integration of their broadband solution for business jets—eXchange with Service by SKYLink—on a customer's Bombardier Challenger 604 business jet. Xchange with Service by SKYLink includes Rockwell Collins eXchange avionics, coupled with SKYLink Ku-band satellite service from ARINC Direct. The Challenger 604 installation was performed at the ARINC Direct aircraft maintenance and integration facility in Colorado Springs (COS), using an STC developed under ARINC's ODA (Organization Designation Authorization). This first-of-type STC was completed April 11, 2009, for ARINC customer Servicios Aéreos Denim, S.A. de C.V., based in Mexico.
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Northrop Grumman's E-2D Advanced Hawkeye has received approval to enter low-rate initial production after successfully completing a Milestone C review. The Acquisition Decision Memorandum (ADM) was signed June 11 by Mr. Ashton Carter, Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics. This decision confirms that the program has demonstrated it has met all acquisition milestone criteria, including successful completion of an Operational Assessment (OA) test phase, and is poised to enter the production phase. During OA, conducted last fall while flying out of the Northrop Grumman East Coast Manufacturing and Flight Test Center in St. Augustine, Fla., all test objectives were executed on schedule with an aircraft availability rate of over 92 percent. Since entering flight test in August 2007, the program has accumulated more than 1,000 flight hours, over half involving in-flight radar testing. With the successful completion of Milestone C, the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye is on track to enter Operational Evaluation (OPEVAL) in Fiscal Year 2012.
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Lufthansa is expanding its services in West and Central Africa and adding another new destination to its network. From 15 July 2009, the airline will fly five times per week from Frankfurt via Accra, Ghana, to Libreville, the capital of Gabon. The route will be operated by Airbus A340 and A330 aircraft with a First, Business und Economy Class cabin. “With the latest addition of Libreville, Lufthansa now offers customers flights to 16 destina-tions across Africa,” says Karl-Ulrich Garnadt, Executive Vice President Lufthansa Passen-ger Airlines. “We are thus continuing to pursue our strategy of integrating all the key growth markets in Africa into our network.”
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FLUG REVUE 12/2016

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07.11.2016

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