Thursday, December 11, 2014

Airbus: upgrade or stop A380 Superjumbo

Airbus will have to install more seats in the A380 and at some moment have to decide whether to upgrade the A380 with new engines or stop production of the Superjumbo.

On Wednesday Airbus Chief financial officer Harald Wilhelm was quoted in the media that Airbus might decide to stop production at the end of the decennium. According to Airbus CEO Fabrice Brégier today the A380 will break even during the next few years and that the aircraft manufacturer will have to decide between an upgrade or production stop.

First delivery of A350 delayed

The delivery of the first Airbus A350 XWB to Qatar Airways, planned for 13 December, has been delayed.

The carrier said in a statement: "Qatar Airways announces that the Airbus A350 aircraft ceremonial transfer of title has been postponed until further notice." The airline didn't give a reason for the delay, but delays are far from unusual for first deliveries to Qatar Airways. The airline was also very critical before accepting its first Airbus A380, recently, and this resulted in a three-month delay. The reason for the A380-delay were concerns about the quality of the cabin interior.

Qatar Airways has ordered 80 A350s: 43 -900s and 37 -1000s. (Photo: Airbus)

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Saturday, December 6, 2014

Airbus A330-200s for long-haul Eurowings

Lufthansa launches a new low-cost long-haul airline under the Eurowings brand. The renewed subsidiary airline will start operations in late 2015 from Cologne/Bonn Airport. Lufthansa will lease up to seven Airbus A330-200 aircraft for the new operation.

First delivery of A350 on 13 December

The first delivery of the Airbus A350 to Qatar Airways is scheduled for 13 December. The official handover will take place in Toulouse, France.

Qatar Airways, the global launch customer for the A350, has ordered a total of 80 A350 XWB Family aircraft, including 43 A350-900s and 37 of the longer-fuselage A350-1000.

The carrier plans to commence commercial service with the A350 XWB between its Hamad International Airport hub in Doha, Qatar, and Frankfurt, Germany, in January.

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Finnair orders extra Airbus A350s

Finnair has ordered eight additional A350-900s. The airline has now a total of 19 A350-900s on order. In 2007 Finnair became a launch customer of the A350 when it placed an order for 11 A350-900s, including an option for a further eight.

The airline currently operates a mix of 15 Airbus A330s and A340s, which fly long-haul routes to Asia and America from its Helsinki hub. Finnair will be the first European airline in autumn 2015 to receive the new Airbus widebody jet. Finnair’s A350 XWBs will seat 297 passengers in a two class configuration. (Image: Airbus)

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CIT firms up A330neo order

Aircraft leasing company CIT Aerospace has firmed up its order for 15 A330-900neo aircraft. CIT became one of the launch customers of the A330neo after signing its initial agreement in July 2014, at the Farnborough International Airshow. CIT also ordered five A321ceo narrowbody aircraft. (Image: Airbus)

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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Airbus A330 MRTT for French air force

The French government has announced an order for twelve Airbus A330 multirole tanker and transport aircraft for its military services.

The first aircraft will be delivered in 2018, the second in 2019 and then two per year until the order is complete. The aircraft will replace obsolete Boeing C-135FR tankers in use since the 1960s.

Main task of the A330 MRTT is in-flight refueling of other aircraft. Air forces already using the A330 tanker-transport version, are those of the UK, Australia and the United Arab Emirates.

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Friday, November 21, 2014

Kuwait Airways wants Boeing 777-300ER

Kuwait Airways has announced the intention to purchase 10 Boeing 777-300ER (Extended Range) aircraft.

Boeing responds that it "appreciates the start of a new partnership with Kuwait Airways", but first wants to finalise the deal before it will post the order on its Orders & Deliveries website.

Kuwait Airways currently flies fifteen widebody aircraft, including two 777-200ERs, one 747-400, four Airbus A340s, three A310s and five A300s.

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Delta orders 50 Airbus widebodies

The champagne glasses in Toulouse, Hamburg and other places with Airbus-plants can be filled. Delta Air Lines has placed a firm order for 50 new Airbus widebody aircraft: 25 A350-900 XWB and 25 A330-900neo aircraft.

The A330neo jets will be powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines and the Trent XWB will power the A350 XWBs.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Airbus launches A330 Beluga

Airbus has launched the development and production of five new Beluga aircraft. The new Belugas will be based on the A330 with a large re-use of existing components and equipment.
The first of the five new Belugas will enter in service in mid-2019. The existing Beluga fleet will operate in parallel, and will be progressively retired through to 2025.

Boeing starts ecoDemonstrator 787 tests

The ecoDemonstrator Boeing 787 has begun flights to test more than 25 new technologies aimed at improving aviation's environmental performance through every phase of flight. The Boeing ecoDemonstrator Program is intended to accelerate the testing, refinement and use of new technologies and methods that can improve efficiency and reduce noise. This new round of testing, using 787 Dreamliner ZA004, will evaluate software and connectivity technologies related to operational efficiency; remote sensors to reduce wiring; aerodynamic and flight control improvements for greater fuel efficiency, and icephobic wing coatings to reduce ice accumulation.

Airbus A350 XWB makes Asian tour

An Airbus A350-900 has taken off from Toulouse for an 11-day demo tour in Asia. Airbus is going to show its newest airliner in South Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia.

The Asian Demo Tour follows the completion of the A350-900 flight test campaign which recently led to the EASA and FAA type certification. The tour is performed by test aircraft MSN5, which has a fully functional cabin (42 business class and 223 economy class seats).

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Airbus A350-900 receives FAA Type Certificate

The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has granted Type Certification for the Airbus A350-900 on 12 November. The certification follows the A350-900 Type Certification awarded by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) on 30 September.

The A350-900’s respective FAA and EASA certification awards come after Airbus successfully finished a stringent programme of certification trials. A fleet of five test A350-900 aircraft completed the certification flight test campaign, on time, in more than 2,600 flight test hours.

At the end of October 2014, the A350 XWB had won 750 orders from 39 customers worldwide.

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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Air Canada orders extra Boeing 777-300ERs

Air Canada has ordered two additional 777-300ER (Extended Range) airplanes. The order was previously listed as unidentified on Boeing’s Orders & Deliveries website.

Air Canada currently operates 23 777s, including 17 777-300ERs and six 777-200LRs (Long Range).

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Tuesday, November 4, 2014

787 Dreamliner to Museum of Flight

The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is already ripe for the museum. The US aircraft manufacturer donates the third Dreamliner built to the Museum of Flight, located at nearby Boeing Field in Seattle, on Saturday 8 November.

The Museum organises a complete "Dreamliner Day" on Saturday around its newest treasure. The aircraft will be placed in the museum's Air Park, where it joins aircraft types like Concorde, Constellation, Boeing 747, Boeing 727, Boeing 737, an ex-presidential Boeing 707 and a Lockheed Super Constellation.