Aviation News in Brief 16 November 2020

OMGA, Pratt & Whitney, Honeywell, Dassault, Vietjet, UPS, Textron Aviation, Aireon, EME Aero, Rolls-Royce, Lufthansa Technik, MAC Aero Interiors, PhilJets


Use this oneOGMA becomes new Pratt & Whitney authorised maintenance centre: OGMA is a new authorised maintenance centre for Pratt & Whitney engines, one of the world’s largest aircraft engine manufacturers. This is the culmination of a project developed by OGMA, with the support of Embraer, over the past 12 months, which allows it to expand its scope of services in the area of engine maintenance, marking the entry of Pratt & Whitney maintenance, repair and overhaul in Portugal. The contract between Pratt & Whitney and OGMA was formalised recently. The industrialisation and training project to carry out the maintenance of Pratt & Whitney GTF PW1100G-JM engine is scheduled to start in 2021 and is expected to develop for the next two decades. Throughout the project, with higher incidence between 2022 and 2023, about 300 highly qualified direct jobs are expected to be created. OGMA will invest 74 million euros, mostly in the first four years of the project, in a strategic step that allows it to broaden its scope of activity in the area of engine maintenance and to achieve new business over the next decades, which will triple OGMA’s turnover and reach the level of 600 million euros annually.

Honeywell, Dassault, launch new FalconConnect portal: Honeywell has released a redesigned FalconConnect portal for Dassault FalconConnect customers. Via their current subscriptions with FalconConnect, current Dassault FalconConnect customers will have access to this expanded enterprise performance management offering powered by Honeywell Forge. The new FalconConnect dashboard brings together in-flight connectivity, flight planning/optimisation, and flight database services in a single platform for a seamless user experience. It provides high-speed in-flight Wi-Fi, hardened aviation cybersecurity, real-time data and alerts, aircraft tracking and monitoring, flight planning and efficiency tools, and always-on support. The FalconConnect dashboard will enable customers to use connected software to manage their connectivity services for the cockpit and cabin through one application. The powerful, insightful and flexible portal allows customers to use an intuitive dashboard to manage nearly every aspect of their business aviation operations.

Vietjet and UPS join hands for global cargo transportation from Asia: Vietjet and UPS have entered into a historic agreement to leverage each other’s global and regional network by further growing trade lanes from Asia to destinations in the US. The agreement provides Vietjet with access to UPS’s extensive global network via UPS’s “browntails” while UPS will be able to tap on Vietjet’s extensive reach within Vietnam, Thailand and all over Asia region, to serve businesses in more areas and at quicker speeds. UPS and Vietjet successfully operated a cargo flight from Hanoi to the US via Incheon (South Korea). The service has been operated with one service per week. Both sides have also conducted cargo flights between Ho Chi Minh City and Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) using UPS planes as well as joining hands for cargo transportation on Vietjet’s flights between Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. Prior to the agreement, Vietjet and UPS Express have previously collaborated to handle cargo on Thai Vietjet’s return COB (cargo on board) flights from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok.

Beechcraft King Air 360 enters into service: Textron Aviation celebrated the entry into service and first delivery of its Beechcraft King Air 360 turboprop aircraft. The event was commemorated in a special delivery to its launch customer – Stamoules Produce Company, Inc. The California-based business selected the flagship King Air 360 as its first-ever aircraft purchase due to its combination of outstanding performance capabilities, ease of operation and the enhanced passenger experience, all of which will help expand the company’s growing operations. Stamoules Produce Company is a family-owned business based in the San Joaquin Valley of central California, often referred to as the cantaloupe centre of the world. Specializing in growing and harvesting fruits, vegetables and nuts on its 17,000 acre farm, Stamoules Produce Company has steadily expanded its business since it began in 1927.

Aireon partners with FAA for space-based ADS-B data: Aireon announced a new partnership with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to explore innovative uses of space-based Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) across the entire air traffic management spectrum using a global dataset. Under the agreement, in which L3Harris Technologies is the prime contractor, the FAA will have broad, intra-agency access to Aireon’s high-fidelity, real-time air traffic surveillance data to support the FAA evaluation of a variety of applications, including validation and integration into air traffic control automation platforms, airspace safety analysis, accident investigation data analysis, airport surface applications, search and rescue, air traffic management support, remote situational awareness and commercial space. Aireon’s space-based ADS-B data will build on L3Harris’ efforts to improve and enhance operations and safety in US airspace by providing contiguous, enterprise wide air traffic surveillance services. The deployment of Aireon’s space-based ADS-B data will enable the FAA to develop use cases that ensure value and return on any future investments.

EME Aero completes first series of Pratt & Whitney GTF shop visits: EME Aero, the engine services joint venture between Lufthansa Technik and MTU Aero Engines, has recently completed the first regular maintenance visits of Pratt & Whitney PW1100G-JM Geared Turbo Fan engines. Since January, when the first engine arrived in line with Pratt & Whitney’s low pressure turbine (LPT) retrofit programme, a total of 21 engines were successfully delivered back to different customers. Moreover, EME Aero has now become an official member in the Pratt & Whitney GTF MRO network. After completing the LPT retrofit programme, whose 15 engines were used to smoothly start operations in the facility, EME Aero has now already completed another six regular customer engine shop visits. The next step for EME Aero is the implementation of a high tech flow line planned for the end of this year and readiness for the induction of PW1500G engines in the middle of 2021.

Rolls-Royce looks to SAF: As part of its ongoing decarbonisation strategy, Rolls-Royce is to use 100 percent sustainable aviation fuel for the first time in engine ground tests on next-generation engine technology. The tests will aim to confirm that unblended SAF makes a significant contribution to improving the environmental performance of gas turbine engines. The SAF being used in the tests was produced by low-carbon fuel specialist World Energy in Paramount, California, sourced by Shell Aviation and delivered by SkyNRG. This unblended fuel has the potential to significantly reduce net CO2 lifecycle emissions by more than 75 percent compared to conventional jet fuel, with the possibility of further reductions in years to come. These tests aim to demonstrate that our current engines can operate with 100% SAF as a full “drop-in” option, laying the groundwork for moving such fuels towards certification. At present, SAF is certified for blends of up to 50 percent with conventional jet fuel and can be used on all current Rolls-Royce engines.

Lufthansa Technik reduces executive board numbers: As part of the restructuring programme RISE, Lufthansa Technik AG will change the structure of its executive board responsibilities. In future, the executive board will consist of a Chief Executive Officer (CEO), a Chief Operating Officer (COO) and a Board member for Finance and Human Resources. The COO will then carry responsibility for all operating divisions. As part of this reorganisation, Constanze Hufenbecher (currently Chief Financial Officer and responsible for the VIP & Special Mission Aircraft Services business unit) and Antonio Schulthess (currently responsible for human resources, lean and process management and the Engines and Aircraft Systems business units) have decided to leave Lufthansa Technik at the end of the year to pursue new entrepreneurial challenges.

MAC Aero Interiors finished Embraer Legacy 600 interior refurbishment: MAC Aero Interiors, subsidiary of a global provider of Total Technical Care for aircraft operators and lessors, Magnetic MRO, has completed a full VIP aircraft interior refurbishment project for a private charter flight management company. The Embraer Legacy 600 aircraft were delivered to Magnetic MRO hangars in Tallinn, Estonia, in September. The project scope followed from concept to completion and included the refurbishment of the seats, divan covers and cushions, including armrests, shroud and fairing covers in a design tailored specifically for the customer. In addition, it included lavatory refurbishments and carpet changes in the aircraft. New specially made perforated leather and fabric materials have been introduced and certified for this programme to create a top-notch interior. Prior to the interior refurbishment, the painting design concept was prepared and the aircraft has been fully repainted in VIP finish at the company’s painting hangar.

PhilJets takes delivery of new business jet: PhilJets in the Philippines has taken delivery of one more new business jet. PhilJets’ private jets fleet has increased by 100 percent in the last three years. It is the third business jet this year that joins PhilJets’ fleet. The Cessna Citation CJ4 with eight seats is the latest addition for PhilJets, the country’s second-largest fleet with 18 aircrafts under management. PhilJets will be operating its second new Citation CJ4 complementing its singular fleet of eight private jets, including brands and models such as Cessna Citation Latitude, Citation XLS, Beechcraft King Airs, Bombardier Challenger or Gulfstream.  In addition, the boutique private aviation company is managing and operating 10 helicopters, from Bell to Airbus rotary aircrafts, such as Bell 505 or Airbus H145.

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