Airbus celebrates a major milestone



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AirbusThe first Airbus aircraft, an A300B2, was delivered to Air France in 1974. Forty-five years on, Airbus is celebrating the delivery of its 12,000th aircraft.

The Airbus A220-100, previously known as the Bombardier CS100, was assembled in Mirabel, Canada, and handed over to Delta Air Lines on Monday.

Delta received its first A220 last October. The aircraft delivered on Monday was its 12th. The airline has placed a firm order for 90 A220s.


Images are courtesy of Airbus.


Coming soon: AS2 supersonic business jet

Aerion_AS2_NewYork_LRAerion Supersonic received a major boost on Tuesday when Boeing announced “a significant” investment in the company to bring the first supersonic business aircraft to the market.

The Aerion AS2 is designed to fly at speeds of up to Mach 1.4 or about 1,600 kilometers an hour, saving three hours on a transatlantic flight, the two companies said. First test flight is slated for 2023.

Aerion_AS2_Vertical1_LRThe 12-passenger jet was announced in 2014 by Aerion, a company founded in 2003. The aircraft will be powered by a GE Affinity engine.

“Aerion is the industry leader mapping out a successful, sustainable return to supersonic flight,” said Tom Vice, chairman, president and CEO.

“The AS2 is the launch point for the future of regulatory-compliant and efficient supersonic flight. Together with Boeing, we’re creating a faster, more connected future with tremendous possibilities for enhancing humanity’s productivity and potential.”

Steve Nordlund, vice-president and general manager of Boeing NeXt, called the agreement a strategic investment in further maturing supersonic technology.

“Through this partnership that combines Aerion’s supersonic expertise with Boeing’s global industrial scale and commercial aviation experience, we have the right team to build the future of sustainable supersonic flight.”


Images are courtesy of Aerion


Bombardier steals the show with new jets


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_DSC9351Bombardier has added two more aircraft to its Global family of business jets that the company says will deliver “unmatched total performance”.

The Global 5500 and the Global 6500 were launched ahead of this week’s opening of the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition, EBACE 2018, in Geneva.


David Coleal

“Bombardier’s two newest Global aircraft are the result of our unrelenting commitment to innovation, excellence and most of all, our desire to deliver unmatched capabilities to our customers,” said David Coleal, president of Bombardier Business Aircraft, as he unveiled the Global 6500 at a TAG Aviation hangar on Sunday.


The Rolls-Royce Pearl

The Global 5500 can connect Sao Paulo and Paris, and Moscow and Los Angeles while the Global 6500 can connect Hong Kong or Singapore and London, and Toluca and Madrid, the company said.

An all-new Rolls-Royce engine will power the aircraft. The jets are expected to enter service at the end of 2019.

All photos are by Abdul Latheef

‘JetBook is the jewel in our crown’


Antonia Lukacinova: Experiencing HondaJet

The Czech high-flier behind the Sapphire Pegasus business aviation awards is now making headlines as the author of JetBook.

The latest edition of the luxury aircraft and helicopter guide will be unveiled at the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition, EBACE 2018, in Geneva next week ahead of its official release in summer.

“Aviation has always been a huge passion of mine, and JetBook is a book that helps the industry by making it easier to fulfill people’s dreams of owning a private jet or helicopter,” Antonia Lukacinova said.

Book“There is no other guide on the market that offers such a comprehensive overview of the industry today.”

The 232-page book features 55 business jets and 20 helicopters as well as exclusive photos and interviews.

“JetBook is the jewel in our crown. We intend to support it with a wealth of up-to-date articles and information about the latest aircraft, along with lifestyle articles in our upcoming JetBook Life series,” said Lukacinova, who has been working in business aviation in the Czech Republic since 2004.

SaphireShe also founded the Sapphire Pegasus Awards, which honors outstanding performances by companies and individuals in business aviation.

This year’s awards will be announced at EBACE on Tuesday. The winners were chosen from 74 nominees via an online ballot by more than 60,000 voters.

Photos are courtesy of Media Tribune and Sapphire Pegasus.

EBACE static display to feature 55 aircraft


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PalexpoEbGeneva hosts the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition, or EBACE, later this month.

One of the world’s biggest business aviation shows, it opens at Palexpo on May 29.

Eb2More than 400 exhibitors will showcase their latest products and services at the three-day event.

The static display will feature 55 aircraft. The organizers say 13,000 aviation professionals will attend the show.

Photo courtesy: EBACE, Palexpo

Bombardier CSeries finally takes off


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CS8The world’s newest commercial aircraft is being delivered on Thursday.

After years of delay and billions of dollars in budget overruns, Canadian manufacturer Bombardier will hand over the first CSeries aircraft to launch customer Swiss International Air Lines at a ceremony in Montreal.

The airline, widely known as SWISS, has ordered 30 CSeries aircraft. The airplane being delivered on Thursday is a 125-seat CS100, the smaller of the CSeries family.

The bigger aircraft, the CS300 with a seating capacity of up to 150, is expected to be certified soon. Air Baltic is the launch customer of that airplane.

“SWISS is proud to be the first airline to take title of the CSeries. The aircraft performed exceptionally well during its acceptance flight, as expected,” said Thomas Kluhr, chief executive officer of SWISS.

“Along with the CS300 aircraft that we’ve also ordered, the CSeries fleet will allow us to perfectly tailor our capacity to demand on various European routes, while providing an excellent travel experience for our passengers.”

Fred2Fred Cromer (right), president of Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, called it the first “right-sized aircraft in the 100- to 150-seat market segment in nearly 30 years.”

“Today is a significant moment for Bombardier, SWISS and their employees – many of whom have dedicated years to designing, building, marketing and defining the flight network for the C Series aircraft,” Cromer added.

The maiden commercial flight of the CS100 will take passengers from Zurich to Paris on July 15. SWISS will gradually replace its Avro RJ100 fleet with the CSeries aircraft. The airline is a subsidiary of Deutsche Lufthansa AG.

In all, Bombardier has won 370 firm orders and 252 options and purchase rights for the CSeries aircraft. Delta Air Lines Inc. is the biggest customer, with an order for up to 125 aircraft.

“A new aircraft program like the CSeries comes around once in a lifetime and it’s a proud achievement that belongs to many,” said Rob Dewar, vice-president of the program.


All photos are by Abdul Latheef



ANA celebrates a Dreamliner milestone

anaJapan’s biggest airline has been celebrating a milestone – its 100,000th revenue flight with the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

The launch customer of the Dreamliner, All Nippon Airways is also the first airline in the world to reach 100,000 787 flights. 

“The 787 Dreamliner has played an important role especially in forming the backbone of our international fleet,” said Osamu Shinobe, president and CEO of ANA, as the airline and Boeing held a ceremony at Seattle’s Sea-Tac International Airport to mark the occasion.

“As the largest customer of the 787, we look forward to introducing the entire family of Dreamliners into our fleet as we aim to celebrate another 100,000 flights and beyond.” 

ANA started operating the Dreamliner In 2011. With 44 aircraft, it has the world’s largest Dreamliner fleet. Another 39 are on order. 

“We are honoured to celebrate this important milestone with ANA, especially here in Seattle,” said Ray Conner, president and CEO, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

“This milestone demonstrates the strength of our long-standing relationship and we look forward to celebrating many more milestones with ANA going forward.”

The image is courtesy of Boeing.


Emirates keeps its fleet young

EK2Twenty Airbus A380s and 16 Boeing 777-300ERs will join the Emirates fleet next year as part of a fleet renewal program, the airline announced Monday.

Some of these airplanes will replace 26 retiring aircraft, including 12 A330-300s, 4 A340-300s, one A340-500, six Boeing 777-200ERs, two Boeing 777-300s and one Boeing 777-300ER, the company said.


“At the end of 2016, the aircraft retirements and new deliveries will put Emirates’ average fleet age at 5.6 years, dramatically younger than the global average,” the airline said.

It noted that the average fleet age for the top five airlines in North America is 13.6 years, while the average fleet age for the top five airlines in Europe is 10.7 years.

The airline will retire 13 more aircraft in 2017 and another 13 in 2018.

EK3“We are fully committed to flying a modern fleet that is better for the environment, and provides our customers with a superior level of comfort and safety,” said company president Sir Tim Clark (left).

“With the retirement of older aircraft and the introduction of new, more fuel efficient aircraft in 2016, Emirates will continue to lead the industry in reducing the age of our fleet, while at the same time defining new levels of service that our customers have come to expect.”

The world’s largest international airline, Emirates currently has 243 airplanes, including 26 it received this year. It has an additional 263 aircraft on order.

The images are courtesy of Emirates.


Plan unveiled to make jet fuel from Canadian forestry waste


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ForestThe world’s largest aircraft manufacturer is collaborating with Canada’s aviation industry, the University of British Columbia and Amsterdam-based SkyNRG to turn forestry waste into sustainable aviation biofuel.

The project was announced Wednesday at the 2015 Canadian Bioeconomy Conference in Vancouver.

Boeing has in the past partnered with the Abu Dhabi-based Masdar Institute and the Brazilian aircraft maker Embraer to advance sustainable aviation biofuel development.

ubcUnder the latest initiative, a consortium that includes Boeing, BombardierAir Canada, WestJet, research institutions and industry partners will assess whether forestry waste could also be harnessed to produce sustainable aviation biofuel, Boeing said.

Thermochemical processing will be used for this, the company added.

b2“Sustainable aviation biofuel will play a critical role in reducing aviation’s carbon emissions over the long term,” said Julie Felgar, managing director of environmental strategy and integration at Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

“Canada is in a terrific position to leverage its sustainable forests to make environmental progress for its aviation industry and other transport sectors.”

Boeing said a 2015 company-sponsored study by UBC had found that aviation biofuel made from forest waste could meet 10 per cent, or about 175 million liters, of British Columbia’s annual jet fuel demand.

greenThe Green Aviation Research and Development Network of Canada is funding the project as part of a portfolio of investments in technologies to reduce aviation’s carbon emissions.

The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that using sustainably produced biofuel will reduce lifecycle carbon dioxide emissions by 50 to 80 per cent compared to conventional petroleum fuel.

The images are courtesy of Boeing, UBC and GARDN.

Shaesta Waiz sets sights on global solo flight


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pilotShaesta Waiz is already famous as Afghanistan’s first certified civilian female pilot.

The 28-year-old Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University student is now setting her sights on a bigger feat – to become the youngest female to fly solo around the world.

Her 90-day, 33-city, 19-country, five-continent flight is scheduled to take off form Daytona Beach, Fla., on June 2, 2016.

The 43,964-kilometre flight was announced Wednesday at the National Business Aviation Association annual convention in Las Vegas.

pilot2Waiz will fly a Beechcraft Bonanza A36, being provided by High Performance Aircraft.

“As a pilot, I have this passion for aviation that I want to share. But it’s more than that. I want to show women that they can succeed in anything, including flying around the world,” Waiz said.

logoShe is currently completing a master’s degree in business administration at Embry-Riddle, the world’s largest and oldest university specializing in aviation and aerospace studies.

“To have my university and the aviation industry support me and make this come true speaks volumes not only to their belief in me and this ground-breaking journey, but every young person with a dream,” Waiz said.

Also participating in the project are the Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation, Bose Corp., American Bonanza Society, Avfuel, Florida Aviation Business Association, MSK Concepts, Beeline, ICAO, UNDP and various individuals.

In 2014, 19-year-old Matt Guthmiller of South Dakota became the youngest person to fly solo around the globe when he completed his 46,570-kilometre journey, also in a Beechcraft Bonanza A36.

The images are courtesy of Embry-Riddle.