Inmarsat CEO reappointed to UN Broadband Commission: Rajeev Suri, CEO of Inmarsat, has been reappointed as a commissioner to the UN Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development. Founded in 2010 by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and UNESCO, the commission was established to bring the goal of universal broadband connectivity to the forefront of policy discussions. The commission examines and advises on what steps need to be taken to shore-up digital networks, strengthen capacity at critical connectivity points like hospitals and transport hubs, and boost digital access and inclusivity. The work is particularly relevant in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the increasing frequency of natural disasters. Suri was first appointed to the Broadband Commission in 2016. During his time in the role, he has co-chaired the Digitalisation Scorecard group and also the Digital Health group. With his reappointment, Suri will continue to focus on ways to improve connectivity globally, especially in more remote and underserved areas, as well as through the use of technologies including satellite communications, which can help deliver services to these hard-to-reach locations.
DART Aerospace receives approval for night refill ops: In partnership with Talon Helicopters, DART Aerospace recently received Transport Canada approval for Talon to perform night hover refill operations with its DART AS365 Fire Attack System (FAS). The approval is the first step in pursuing a full FAA STC update to allow night vision goggles (NVG) aided and unaided night hover refill operations on all DART AS365 Fire Attack Systems. This move comes as demand for night firefighting increases around the globe to help battle the world’s growing number of devastating wildfires. Certified tanks like DART’s fire attack system are the only firefighting tool for night VFR flights. The original AS365 FAS STC only allows ground fill operations at night. After purchasing the FAS-equipped aircraft, Richmond, B.C.-based Talon Helicopters requested DART’s support in removing night hover refill restrictions. DART worked with Transport Canada and Talon, arranging NVG-aided and unaided flight tests to demonstrate the safety of night hover refill operations. DART submitted the flight test report and other certification documentation to Transport Canada.
AerAdvise gets nod to manage airworthiness of aircraft internationally: Dublin-based AerAdvise has received EASA Part-CAMO authorisation from the Irish Aviation Authority to provide Airworthiness Management services for aircraft operators and owners. The new authorisation will allow AerAdvise to manage the ongoing airworthiness of individual aircraft and the import, export and storage of aircraft around the world on behalf of airline operators and aircraft leasing companies. AerAdvise is an independent technical consulting and asset management company working with aircraft leasing clients around the world. The company is the first company to receive this authorisation from the IAA without having any pre-existing approval in place. Clients of AerAdvise include investment funds, banks and aircraft leasing companies as well as airlines.
Demand solid for private spaces at Doha and Dubai sleep lounges: New figures from lounge and airport experience company Airport Dimensions suggest how some elements of the non-aeronautical revenue mix will remain strong performers in a post-COVID era, and how spending patterns may change as the airport business begins to recover. Occupancy levels at the company’s new sleep ‘n fly Sleep Lounges at Doha’s Hamad International Airport (DOH) and Dubai International Airport (DXB) are exceeding expectations and even pre-COVID levels of occupancy. The 50-bed Sleep Lounge at DOH has grown occupancy every month to record levels, just six months after opening in September 2020. Meanwhile, the 22-bed facility at DXB Terminal 3 Concourse C – which launched in late November 2020 – is also trading well, with occupancy levels in line with pre-COVID expectations. Combined, both Sleep Lounges have already provided for in excess of 100,000 guest hours of rest or social distancing to travellers at these two Gulf mega hubs, which continue to reliably connect the world even in times of COVID.
Airways International completes Norway simulation project: A fully remote installation of 12 air traffic control simulator sites throughout Norway is now complete, ending a complex eight-month project for Airways International (AIL) and Avinor. AIL says it reinvented its TotalControl ATC simulator delivery process to remotely install and site test the suite of simulators for Avinor Air Navigation Services. The project’s scale of six large tower cabs (four with dedicated surveillance sims), six mobile simulators and 17 aerodrome environments, along with the tight timeframe was already a challenge. Overlaying COVID-19 border and travel restrictions created the right opportunity to adapt a reasonably standard sim commissioning process to be more dynamic, efficient and flexible, which increased feedback loops and collaboration between AIL and Avinor. The AIL and Avinor teams worked thousands of kilometres apart during the project, creatively using technology to undertake remote factory acceptance testing of the simulators from New Zealand, and remote site acceptance testing led by Avinor in Norway.
TOPCAST names Tony Lameri as MD for Oceania: Hong Kong-based TOPCAST announced that Tony Lameri has joined the group as managing director for Oceania. Based in Australia, Lameri will be responsible for sales growth and increase product penetration within the region. He will lead the Oceania team for customer excellence to deliver exceptional product support with reliable lead times and competitive pricing. Most recently, Lameri served at Flite Path Proprietary Limited as Director – Business Development and Logistics. In this role, he successfully gained new businesses with major airlines and commercial/military MRO by presenting stocking solutions to reduce the end users’ initial outlay for spares. He also achieved a smooth transition to a more robust Quality Assurance System to meet the latest customer needs and expectations. Lameri joins the group with more than 35 years of leadership experience in aviation sales, procurement, operations, business development and MRO operations for various spare parts distributors and regional airlines. He gained diverse and hands-on experience at Honeywell Aerospace, Aeromil Pacific, ExecuJet Australia, Cartech Services and Regional Express.