News in Brief Dubai Airshow Day 1

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2023-11-13_01_Emirates-Airbus-A380_Copyright-Emirates
(PHOTO: Emirates)

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Lufthansa Technik to provide additional 23 C-checks for Emirates: Lufthansa Technik and Emirates have signed a Base Maintenance Services (BMS) contract for Airbus A380s during the Dubai Airshow. By October 2026, another 23 of the world’s largest passenger aircraft will undergo C-checks performed by Lufthansa Technik Philippines (LTP) in Manila. With the agreement now signed, the Dubai-based airline is once again entrusting heavy checks for this fleet type from its own in-house MRO capacities to the world’s leading MRO provider. Lufthansa Technik’s competence center for Base Maintenance Services on the double-decker long-haul aircraft in Manila has already carried out several heavy checks for Emirates’ A380s since January this year. As soon as the ten A380s covered by the very first agreement have undergone the checks, additional 23 aircraft will follow. By October 2026, LTP will have performed base maintenance checks for 33 Emirates’ Airbus, which is over a quarter of the world’s largest A380 fleet.
Emirates orders 202 additional GE9X engines and services for Boeing 777X fleet: Emirates announced an order for 202 GE9X engines and spares to power its upcoming fleet of Boeing 777X family of aircraft. The order also includes a long-term services agreement. This brings Emirates’ total order for GE9X engines to 460. The 777X will be the world’s largest and most efficient twin-engine jet, delivering 10% better fuel consumption, emissions, and operating costs than any aircraft in its class. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group, said: “Emirates has a long and strong working partnership with GE, and we are pleased to extend this relationship with additional orders of the GE-9X to power our expanded Boeing 777X fleet. Today’s deal also involves many other related services over the life-span of the aircraft, which ensures the Emirates fleet remains one of the most modern and efficient in the sky. It is a long-term commitment and investment that generates and sustains jobs throughout the aviation supply chain.” “GE Aerospace is excited to be ramping up to introduce the power and efficiency of the GE9X for Emirates’ Boeing 777X fleet,” said Larry Culp, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of GE and Chief Executive Officer of GE Aerospace. “Today’s order builds upon decades of partnership with this future-focused airline, including our multi-faceted collaboration across engines with the GE90 and GP7200 [i], engineering and maintenance with the Emirates Engineering & Maintenance Centre, and sustainability and entrepreneurship initiatives.”

Falcon Aviation Services to double its helicopter tours business: Falcon Aviation Services, a leading Business Aviation Services operator in the Middle East and Africa region, is set to elevate the aerial tourism experience after receiving five cutting-edge Airbus H130 helicopters in 2023. Renowned for its extensive range of Operational and Aviation Support Services, Falcon, through its subsidiary “Falcon Tours,” offers captivating Helicopter Sightseeing Tours from some of the UAE’s most iconic destinations, including Atlantis Hotel, The Palm, Abu Dhabi Ports, and Expo 2020. Positioned among the top five helicopter tour operators globally, the company currently serves 70,000 sightseeing passengers annually. With the addition of the new fleet, Falcon aims to double this number within the next three years. The first ordered H130, operational since February, has already logged an impressive 768 flight hours. Captain Ramandeep Oberoi, Chief Operating Officer of Falcon Aviation Services, expressed enthusiasm about the H130, stating, “We are just thrilled with our H130; it really fits the bill with the incredible visibility that it offers passengers. It has been specifically selected to provide the best sightseeing experience, the H130 boasts large panoramic windows, air conditioning, luxurious and spacious interiors, along with accessories for a remarkable adventure. Not to mention the low sound levels that enable us to perform our missions seamlessly in the urban environment.”

AirBaltic to become largest Airbus A220 customer in Europe: AirBaltic will become the largest A220 customer in Europe after confirming an incremental order for an additional 30 A220-300s. This new order will take the airline’s total firm orderbook to 80 aircraft. Already operating a 44 strong fleet of A220-300s, airBaltic is currently the largest A220-300 operator in the world. The airline’s history with the Airbus A220-300 dates back to 2016 where it was the launch customer, and in 2020, it refreshed its fleet to solely operate this aircraft type. “This day marks a significant milestone in the history of airBaltic – our plans for the first time ever to operate a fleet of 100 aircraft by 2030. For almost seven years already, the Airbus A220-300 has been the backbone of our operations and has played an integral role in the international success story of airBaltic”, said Martin Gauss, President and CEO of airBaltic. “Being the global launch customer of the Airbus A220-300, we continue to be a proud ambassador of it. We are grateful to our partners at Airbus for the incredible support, trust, and collaboration over these years.”

Leonardo highlights AI, Space and Cyber Security at Dubai: Leonardo has a 50+ years  in the UAE, one of the largest export markets for the company, and with a highly diversified range of products, services, and collaborations, both in the civil and defence sectors. More than 100 helicopters are used in the country for VIP transport, energy industry support, rescue and security, with one of the leading logistics centres established by Leonardo with the local partner Abu Dhabi Aviation. Moreover, 45 ships are in service with the Navy’s feature systems, radars, communication systems, and artillery supplied by Leonardo. Notably, the Aermacchi MB-339 trainer and the relevant training capabilities have been provided to the Al Fursan aerobatic team. Leonardo now aims to strengthen the strategic partnership with the country, expand the collaboration with local companies and institutions, both industrially and technologically, and deliver training for highly skilled professionals. As an example, in the space sector, Leonardo’s industrial expertise in general terms covers the entire value chain: satellite and orbital infrastructure manufacturing, equipment and high-tech sensor production, satellite service management, propulsion and launcher systems. Therefore, with this expertise, Leonardo is well-positioned as an ideal partner for initiatives in the space sector. Cyber Security can be another vital area of interest. Together with the recent cooperation with Khalifa University to offer certification and training programs in Abu Dhabi, the company is ready to provide the country with its know-how in digital infrastructure resilience against cyber-attacks and response capability. Cyber Security increasingly involves all sectors and will be even more so in the future. This will require a solid effort to secure not only digital and physical infrastructures but also systems and platforms, communications, and mobility since their early design stages. An Italian Guardia di Finanza’s AW169 helicopter is on static display, featuring one of this type’s most recent, complete, and sophisticated configurations with several proprietary technologies in integrated sensors and mission equipment. This aircraft will carry out a demonstration tour in the country over the next few weeks. The introduction of skids, the performance increase, and the certification of dedicated SAR – Search and Rescue modes, together with the future advantages of an increased gross weight and larger capacity, will make the AW169 the ideal solution to modernise the fleets used in the region for public services and energy industry support.

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