Bill introduced to protect FAA funding in future US government shutdowns
Two key US lawmakers overseeing federal transportation policy have introduced a bill that would keep the FAA fully funded during any future lapse in appropriations.
The Aviation Funding Stability Act, co-sponsored by Reps. Peter DeFazio (D-New York), chairman of the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, and Rick Larsen (D-Washington), chairman of the Committee’s subcommittee on Aviation, would draw from the Airport and Airway Trust Fund (AATF) to protect FAA programs and personnel from future government shutdowns.
ANALYSIS: New era for Bombardier Belfast?
Thirty years after its transition from one of the UK’s last aircraft builders into a unit of Bombardier, the one-time Shorts factory in Belfast may be about to reinvent itself again. The flagship of the Canadian firm’s aerostructures business – which includes facilities in Canada, Mexico, Morocco and Wichita – Belfast is Airbus’s only third-party wing supplier, after Toulouse took over the ailing CSeries programme from Bombardier in 2018. Now, a decline in Bombardier’s commercial aircraft activities means the European airframer could become even more pivotal to Belfast’s future.
VIDEO & PICTURES: Boeing's Jumbo jet celebrates golden jubilee
Fifty years ago (on 9 February), the first Boeing 747 (RA001) took to the air from Paine Field along a runway adjacent to the Boeing’s then-new Everett plant in Washington.
Following a flight-test programme of more than 1,400h involving five aircraft, the 747 was certificated on 30 December 1969 and entered service with Pan Am on 21 January 1970.
Leonardo picks GE CT7 engines for next-gen tiltrotor
Leonardo Helicopters has selected twin GE Aviation CT7 engines to power the Next-Gen Civil Tiltrotor (NGCTR) technology demonstrator it is producing under the EU's Clean Sky 2 initiative.
Talks with GE on the latest application for the powerplant began in October 2018, says NGCTR programme manager Andrea Artioli.
Bombardier insists it will still build Global 8000 business jet
Bombardier has reiterated its commitment to the stalled Global 8000 business jet and continues to re-evaluate the aircraft's potential performance, but will not commit to any timeline for development.
"We are still exploring options on the 8000. There are a number of items we are working on with an eye on what that would be," says Stephen McCullough, vice-president of engineering and product development for the Global 7500 and 8000.
OPINION: Bombardier answers regional riddle with CRJ550
For quite some time, there has seemed to be no question for which the appropriate answer is "more CRJs".
But in justifying the launch of its CRJ550 model, Bombardier appears to have crafted one.
It has identified a large pool of existing 50-seaters – mostly out-of-production CRJ200s and Embraer ERJ-145s – that require replacement in the coming years by something that offers passengers a roomier cabin.
ANA Holdings signs stake in PAL; eyes ASEAN market growth
Executives at All Nippon Airways Holdings (ANA HD) and Philippine Airlines (PAL) began their new strategic partnership Friday after completing signing ceremonies in Tokyo.
ANA HD has invested $95 million in PAL Holdings, giving it a 9.5% stake in the company. The investment was announced Jan. 29.
Flybe to wind up company if shareholders do not back takeover deal
UK regional carrier Flybe has told shareholders it had to sell off its operating companies, or face administration, adding that the empty holding company will wind up if shareholders do not back Connect Airways’ takeover offer.
AirBaltic eyes financing opportunities to firm A220 options
Latvian carrier airBaltic has appointed New York-headquartered investment bank Greenhill to advise on financing possibilities, which would be used to begin firming 30 Airbus A220 options by mid-2020. On Feb. 7, airBaltic announced that it had brought Greenhill in to evaluate financing options, including potential new investors. AirBaltic is 80%-owned by the Latvian state. The remaining 20% is held by Danish entrepreneur Lars Thuesen.
Panalpina’s largest shareholder rejects DSV approach
Ernst Göhner Foundation, which owns approximately 46% of Swiss freight-forwarder Panalpina, has rejected a Panalpina takeover approach from Danish freight-forwarder DSV.
In mid-January, DSV submitted an unsolicited, nonbinding proposal to acquire Panalpina for CHF170 ($172) per share, comprising a mix of cash and DSV shares.
Royal Jordanian, Etihad ink strategic codeshare agreement
Oneworld member Royal Jordanian (RJ) and Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways, will codeshare on routes to Asia, Australia, Europe, North Africa and Canada, from Feb. 15.
Both carriers offer multiple daily services between their hubs in Amman and Abu Dhabi.
AirAsia X to open fifth Australian destination
AirAsia X’s Thai affiliate is launching a route to Brisbane this year, giving the AirAsia X and AirAsia groups five destinations in Australia.
Thai AirAsia X intends to begin flying from its hub at Bangkok Don Mueang International Airport to Brisbane on June 25. The service will be 4X-weekly, using Airbus A330s. Thai Airways already operates a flight between Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport and Brisbane.
Air Senegal outlines A330neo routes, Dakar hub development
Air Senegal is set to take delivery of its first of two Airbus A330neos soon, and is targeting using its home base at Dakar Blaise-Diagne International Airport as a hub for Western Africa.
“Our first A330neo will be flying the Dakar-Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) route on a daily basis. The second A330neo will fly to North and South America. Using Dakar as a hub for West Africa is indeed the vision,” an Air Senegal spokesperson in Dakar told ATW.
El Al Israel Airlines retires final Boeing 767
El Al Israel Airlines has retired its last Boeing 767-300ER, 36 years after the widebody aircraft entered service.
The Israeli flag carrier operated 13 767s, six 767-200s and seven larger -300s. The aircraft type has been used on both long-haul routes, to destinations such as Toronto or Hong Kong, and shorter sectors to European destinations since 1983.
Jet Airways confirms grounding of four aircraft on lease defaults
India’s Jet Airways confirms it has been forced to ground four aircraft because of defaults on lessor payments, as the airline continues to work on a bailout plan.
In a stock exchange statement dated Feb. 7, Jet said the aircraft are grounded because of “non-payment of amounts outstanding to lessors under lease agreements.”
Yamal Airlines SSJ100 hits lamppost after landing at Domodedovo
A Yamal Airlines Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ100) hit a lamppost while taxiing after landing at Moscow Domodedovo International Airport Feb. 6, at 8:30 p.m. local time. No injuries were reported among 58 passengers and five crew aboard the flight, which originated from Tyumen.
Brussels Airlines cancels all flights ahead of Belgium national strike
Lufthansa Group subsidiary Brussels Airlines has scrapped its entire schedule of 222 flights for Feb. 13 because of industrial action across various stakeholders operating at Brussels Airport, as part of a wider national strike in Belgium.
The strike action affects travel plans of more than 16,000 passengers.
Airbus A220 makes North American debut with Delta Air Lines
Delta Air Lines on Feb. 7 became the first airline in the Americas to debut the Airbus A220, operating flights between New York LaGuardia (LGA) and both Boston Logan and Dallas-Fort Worth International (DFW).
The A220’s debut—delayed a week when the partial government shutdown held up final FAA approvals—kicks off a major ramp-up in A220 services for both Delta and the region.
Kenya E190s collide during maintenance mishap
Two Kenya Airways Embraer 190s have been badly damaged during a ground collision following a mishap during maintenance.
The airline states that the accident occurred at night on 8 February, during a routine engine maintenance check at a Nairobi airport hangar.
VIDEO: Convair C-131B crashes into Atlantic east of Miami
The US Coast Guard has rescued one person from the Atlantic Ocean after a Conquest Air Convair C-131B aircraft crashed east of Miami on 8 February.
The Coast Guard is now searching for a second person who was apparently aboard the aircraft when it came down at about 12:15 local time, according to the Coast Guard and the US Federal Aviation Administration.
PICTURE: Schiphol hotel to exhibit ex-KLM 747-400
One of KLM’s former Boeing 747-400s has been transported to a hotel just outside Amsterdam Schiphol, where it will be converted into an exhibit about the iconic aircraft.
Transfer of the aircraft – formerly registered PH-BFB, and named Bangkok – coincided with the 50th anniversary of Boeing’s maiden flight with the 747 on 9 February 1969.
US carriers to gain 12 more daytime slots at Tokyo Haneda
The US Department of Transportation has started accepting applications from US carriers for up to 12 new daytime slot pairs that are expected to open up at Tokyo Haneda International airport.
An order by the department states that recently concluded negotiations on the USA-Japan bilateral are expected to see the additional slots become available to US carriers for the start of the 2020 summer scheduling season.
Birmingham Airport gets funding for electric busses
Birmingham Airport has been awarded £1.4 million in funding from the UK government to support the introduction of electric powered buses at the gateway.
The funding – courtesy of the Ultra Low Emission Bus Scheme administered by the Department for Transport (DfT) and the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) – will support the electrification of the airport’s landside bus fleet with ultra-low emission buses.
Passenger at CPH to assist in development of new security protocol
Passengers at Copenhagen Airport will be trialling new security features to ensure the longevity of the new technology, which will enable passengers to leave liquids in hand luggage.
Copenhagen Airport (CPH) has announced the beginning of the development planned for the current security protocols at the airport. These developments will improve the passenger experience by eventually ensuring that passengers can go through security without having to remove computers and liquids from their hand luggage.
USAF to struggle with novice aircraft maintainers for years
The US Air Force continues to struggle to keep and replace sufficient numbers of experienced and highly skilled aircraft maintainers.
That’s according to a Government Accountability Office report which said the USAF reduced the overall gap between actual maintainer staff levels and authorised levels from 4,016 maintainers in fiscal year 2015, to 745 in fiscal year 2017. But, in seven of the last eight fiscal years the USAF had staffing gaps of more-experienced maintainers, who are also needed to train new maintainers.
Raytheon looks to install F-35’s DAS on helicopters
After winning a contract in June 2018 from Lockheed Martin to develop and produce the F-35 Lightning II’s next-generation electro-optical Distributed Aperture System (DAS), Raytheon is looking at also installing the camera technology on helicopters.
As late as 2012, Raytheon had been developing a similar system tailor-made for helicopters as part of a US Army demonstration programme.
One peek is worth a thousand instrument cross-checks.
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