Archive for November, 2007

KLM orders additional 777-300ER and 737-700

Following the Airbus announcement yesterday about an additional A330 order by KLM, Boeing counters with an KLM order as well.
According to Boeing, KLM has additionally ordered 3 Next-Generation 737-700s and 2 777-300ERs (Extended Range). KLM also took options on 1 additional 737 and 2 additional 777s. The order was previously posted to the Boeing Orders and Deliveries Web site attributed to an “unidentified customer”.
Including the recent orders, the airline has 6 777-300ERs on direct order with Boeing and is scheduled to take delivery of its first of this model in the first quarter of 2008. KLM currently operates a fleet of 15 777-200ERs in a combination of leases and direct purchases.

Source: Boeing

Further Airbus A330 orders announced

Airbus announced several new A330 orders. Following the orders in detail.

US Airways expands A330 order
US Airways is expanding its A330 fleet with the purchase of 5 more A330-200 aircraft. This firm order is in addition to the 92 Airbus aircraft, including 10 A330-200s ordered by US Airways in October of this year.

Doug Parker, chairman and CEO of US Airways said: “The A330-200 with its superior range relative to our existing fleet will allow US Airways to continue international expansion to new destinations across the globe from the Pacific to the Atlantic. We intend to use the A330s to expand our existing gateways as well as provide the potential to eventually add intercontinental service from our west coast hubs.”

“We are delighted that US Airways, our largest world-wide operator, continues to choose Airbus aircraft for its fleet. This additional order reaffirms the A330 as a superb performer for US Airways’ expanding international route network,” said John Leahy, Airbus’ Chief Operating Officer-Customers.

KLM signs follow-up contract for 2 A330s
KLM Royal Dutch Airlnes has signed a contract for the acquisition of two further A330-200s plus an option on two, herewith bringing their total A330 fleet to 12 aircraft. This acquisition is part of the longer term fleet renewal and expansion plans of KLM.
The A330s, powered by CF6-80E(1A3) engines, will mainly serve on intercontinental and will have a two-class configuration with 251 seats.

Source: Airbus

Lockheed P-38 Lightning found on UK beach

65 years after an American USAF Lockheed P-38 Lightning ran out of gas and crash-landed on a beach in Wales, the long-forgotten World War II relic has emerged from the surf and sand where it lay buried. The aircraft is believed to be P-38F USAAF serial number 41-7677 assigned to the 49th Squadron, 14th Fighter Group, 8th Air Force. Experts hope to recover the plane for a British military museum.

American Lockheed P-38 Lightning at UK beach

Sunbathers and swimmers often frolicked within a few yards of the aircraft, unaware of its existence until last summer, when unusual weather caused the sand to shift and erode.
The revelation of the Lockheed “Lightning” fighter has stirred interest in British aviation circles and among officials of the country’s aircraft museums, ready to reclaim another artifact from history’s greatest armed conflict.
Based on its serial number and other records, “the fighter is arguably the oldest P-38 in existence, and the oldest surviving 8th Air Force combat aircraft of any type,” said Ric Gillespie, who heads a U.S.-based nonprofit group dedicated to preserving historic aircraft. “In that respect it’s a major find, of exceptional interest to British and American aviation historians.”
Gillespie’s organization, the International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery, learned of the plane’s existence in September from a British air history enthusiast and sent a team to survey the site last month. The group plans to collaborate with British museum experts in recovering aircraft next spring. The aircraft is largely intact and remarkably free of corrosion.
“The difficult part is to keep such a dramatic discovery secret. Looting of historic wrecks, aircraft or ships, is a major problem, in Britain as it is worldwide,” Gillespie said.

British aviation publications have been circumspect about disclosing the exact location, and local Welsh authorities have agreed to keep the plane under surveillance whenever it is exposed by the tides of the Irish Sea, he said. For now, the aircraft is again buried under sand.
Officially, the U.S. Air Force considers any aircraft lost before Nov. 19, 1961 — when a fire destroyed many records — as “formally abandoned,” and has an interest in such cases only if human remains are involved.

The Wales Lightning, built in 1941, reached Britain in early 1942 and flew combat missions along the Dutch-Belgian coast. On September 27, 1942, fuel exhaustion during a training mission forced 2nd Lt. R. Frederick Elliott to land the large twin-engine fighter in shallow water near a beach in Wales. His belly landing sheared off a wingtip, but Elliott escaped unhurt. Less than three months later, the veteran of more than 10 combat missions was shot down over Tunisia, in North Africa. His plane and body were never found.

Following the accident, 8th Air Force authorities disarmed, but did not salvage, the aircraft which was soon covered by the shifting sand beneath the surf. At the time of Lt. Elliott’s mishap, few civilians in the local area were aware of the accident because the beaches in the United Kingdom were closed to the public during World War II and the press was not allowed to print stories about Allied wrecks. After the war, recreational use of the beaches resumed but the Lightning remained hidden.

The twin-engine P-38, a radical design conceived by Lockheed design genius Clarence “Kelly” Johnson in the late 1930s, became one of the war’s most successful fighter planes, serving in Europe and the Pacific. First delivered to the U.S. Army Air Corps in June 1941, the Lockheed P-38 was the only American fighter to remain in continuous production for the entire duration of the United States’ involvement in the Second World War. A total of 10,037 examples were built. An estimated thirty-two complete or partial airframes survive in museums and private collections worldwide. Approximately ten aircraft are reportedly airworthy. A similar number are displayed as extensively restored non-flying aircraft. The remaining airframes exist only as wreckage or parts to be used in rebuilds. Only one Lightning, the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum’s P-38J 42-67762, a former training aircraft, survives as an original, unrestored example of the type.

The P-38F was the first model to see combat but no original example of the mark survives in any collection. Nearly all existing P-38s are late-production G, H, J and L models. In Papua New Guinea, components from four P-38F hulks (42-12647, 42-12652, 42-13084, and 42-13105) are reportedly being used to re-construct a single composite aircraft. Another P-38F, 41-7630, was recovered from under the Greenland icecap in 1992 and subsequently re-manufactured as “Glacier Girl” to create an airworthy P-38F. While attractive and evocative, the flyable aircraft is essentially a new P-38.
Developed to a United States Army Air Corps requirement, the P-38 had distinctive twin booms and a single, central nacelle containing the pilot and armament. The aircraft was used in a number of different roles, including dive bombing, level bombing, ground strafing, photo reconnaissance missions, and extensively as a long-range escort fighter when equipped with droppable fuel tanks under its wings. The P-38 was used most extensively and successfully in the Pacific Theater of Operations and the China-Burma-India Theater of Operations, where it was flown by the American pilots with the highest number of aerial victories to this date. America’s top ace Richard Bong earned 40 victories (in a Lightning he called Marge), and Thomas McGuire (in Pudgy) scored 38. In the South West Pacific theater, it was a primary fighter of United States Army Air Forces until the appearance of large numbers of P-51D Mustangs toward the end of the war.

Source: Yahoo News & TIGHAR
Photo Credit: TIGHAR
Link: The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery

3rd C-40C delivered to U.S. Air Force

The Boeing Company Friday 16th November delivered the third of three C-40C transport aircraft to the U.S. Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC), providing a critical airlift asset to government leaders on official business.
Maj. Gen. Robert Duignan, commander, 4th Air Force, accepted the aircraft at Boeing facilities in Seattle and flew it to Scott Air Force Base (AFB), Ill., where it will begin service with the AFRC.

U.S. Air Force Boeing C-40C (NG 737-700)

The 932nd and 375th Airlift Wings, units of the AFRC and Air Mobility Command respectively, will use the Next-Generation 737-700 Boeing Business Jet derivative to provide congressional delegations and senior government personnel safe, secure and reliable transportation — often to remote locations around the world — while supporting their need to conduct in-flight business.
Aircraft modifications include military avionics that augment the 737’s commercial flight deck; satellite communications equipment for passenger use; a reconfigurable interior that comprises 40 business-class seats, two work areas with conference table or divan and accommodations for 11 crew members; and auxiliary fuel tanks that extend the aircraft’s range to approximately 4,400 nautical miles.
The airplane joins a family of 18 C-40s already in service with the U.S. government: three C-40Cs with the Air National Guard at Andrews AFB, Md., as well as the two already delivered to AFRC at Scott AFB; four Air Force C-40Bs supporting the U.S. Combatant Commands at Andrews, Ramstein AFB, Germany, and Hickam AFB, Hawaii; and the U.S. Navy Reserve’s nine C-40As stationed at Naval Air Stations North Island, Calif., Fort Worth, Texas, and Jacksonville, Fla.

Source: Boeing
Photo Credit: Boeing - Jim Coley

FAA Report - 11/19/2007

Date & Time: 11/19/2007 00:25
Location: Denver, CO
Aircraft Type: Airbus A300B4-622R Registration: N740FD
Airline: FedEx
Phase: Landing
Damage: None
Injuries & Fatalities: none
Description: Tailstrike at landing in Denver

Date & Time: 11/17/2007 21:10
Location: Dallas, TX
Aircraft Type: Boeing 737 Registration: N/A
Airline: Southwest Airlines Flight: 438
Phase: Take-off
Damage: Unknown
Injuries & Fatalities: none
Description: Southwest Airlines flight 438, a Boeing 737, on departure experienced a vibration in the number 2 engine, engine sustained unknown damage, aircraft returned and landed without incident.
UPDATE: Visit: Follow-up - Southwest Engine Failure

Source: FAA
Correctness of this posting is not guaranteed & completeness not intended. This posting is just for informational purpose.

Investigation Report - Nationwide 737-200 Accident at CPL

Nationwide Airlines and South African Civil Aviation Authority published details about the investigation of the Nationwide Boeing 737-200, flight CE723, accident at Cape Town. On 7th November flight CE723 lost engine number 2 during departure from Cape Town. See: 737-200 Looses Engine at CPT (Pictures)

As a result of this incident, the South African Civil Aviation Authority released an Airworthiness Directive which required the inspection of certain components of the engine mounts to the aircraft. Effectively, this grounded all Boeing 737-200 aircraft operated in South Africa until compliance with the Airworthiness Directive could be accomplished.

It has been determined that during the take off roll an object which is yet to be defined was ingested into the engine which caused a catastrophic engine failure. The subsequent forces experienced by the engine supporting structure caused this to fail and for the number two engine to detach from the wing. The engine-to-wing supporting structure is designed to release the engine when extreme forces are applied to prevent any structural damage to the wing that may impair the aircrafts ability to fly.

The engine on this particular aircraft, a Pratt & Whitney JT8D-15, was fitted in March 2005 after a major overhaul by an approved Federal Aviation Authority Facility in the USA and has since accumulated 3,806 hours. These engines typically achieve 10,000 hrs between major overhauls.

SERIES OF EVENTS

* On Friday evening a total of 3 aircraft were inspected and released by the CAA back into service.
* During the course of Saturday 10th November 7 additional aircraft were inspected and released by the CAA back into service.
* During the course of Sunday 11th November the last of Nationwide Airlines’ B737-200s was inspected and released by the CAA back into service.
* Nationwide Airlines has proposed more stringent inspections of the Boeing 737-200 fleet of aircraft than originally required by the Civil Aviation Authority. Such inspections require more than twenty four hours per aircraft to complete and are therefore ongoing.
* On Monday 12th and Tuesday 13th November, the Maintenance Organization operated by Nationwide Airlines underwent further inspection by the Civil Aviation Authority as part of the routine incident investigation. The inspection was completed without any findings of non-conformance or non-compliance.

Source: Nationwide Airlines

First AirBridgeCargo 747-400 Freighter Delivered

On 16th November, Boeing delivered the first Boeing 747-400 Freighter to enter the fleet of AirBridgeCargo, a subsidiary of Volga-Dnepr Group, under lease from GE Commercial Aviation Services (GECAS).
The new airplane is the sixth 747 freighter in the AirBridge fleet, joining five 747-200/-300 Freighters. It is also the first of two 747-400 Freighters that AirBridgeCargo will lease from GE Commercial Aviation Services, and the carrier will take an additional 747-400F on lease in the second quarter of 2008. The Volga-Dnepr Group has also ordered five of Boeing’s new 747-8 Freighters, the next model in the 747 freighter family.
GECAS has another 747-400F delivery in early 2008; which also will be leased to AirBridgeCargo.
The new airplane will be used on AirBridgeCargo’s routes worldwide. AirBridgeCargo’s new Boeing 747-400 Freighter is powered by General Electric CF6-80C2 engines.

AirBridgeCargo 747-400 Freighter (Volga-Dnepr Group)

Source & Picture: Boeing

Airbus A340-600 Ground Test Accident

An accident occurred at Airbus Saint-Martin site in Toulouse yesterday 15th November at 5 pm local time, when engine-run-ups were being carried out on an A340-600, MSN 856 (to be A6-EHG), which was due to be delivered to Etihad in the coming days.
The A340-600 jumped its chocks during an engine test and the nose went up and through a blast fence. The airplane has been substantial damaged.

There were nine persons on board out of them five people sustained injuries. There are no fatalities.
Airbus reports that of the five injured people, three remain in hospital. Two were released between yesterday night and this morning. Of the three persons remaining in hospital, one is an employee of Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies (ADAT), a service provider for Etihad Airways, and two are Airbus employees. Airbus and ADAT are providing all necessary support to the persons involved and their families.
An investigation has started yesterday night and Airbus is providing full support to the official investigation authorities in France.

Pictures

Etihad Airbus A340-600 Ground Test Accident
Ethiad Airbus A340-600 Ground Test Accident

Credit: TF1
Source: PPrune

Dubai Airshow 2007 - Airbus Orders Overview

Airbus S.A.S. LogoAirbus ended the 10th Dubai Airshow with major orders, re-enforcing customer confidence in its leading product range. During the show, Airbus received 163 firm orders valued at US over $28 billion at catalogue prices, from 10 customers. Airbus also won its largest ever order in terms of value for 70 A350 XWBs and 11 A380s from Emirates Airline. In addition, it received 132 commitments from three customers.

Orders in detail

  • C Jet Limited of Hong Kong has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for the first VIP Airbus A350XWB, becoming a new customer for the type. Called the Airbus A350XWB Prestige the aircraft will feature a VIP cabin customised to C Jet Limited’s needs.
  • New Egyptian airline Nile Air has agreed to buy 9 Airbus A321 aircraft. The privately owned regional carrier signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Airbus to base its future fleet on the A321 aircraft.
  • Airblue, Pakistan’s fastest-growing airline has signed a firm contract for eight Airbus A320s, taking their total order for the A320 Family to 14. In late November 2006, Airblue signed firm contracts for six Airbus A320s. The aircraft will be configured to seat 157 passengers in two classes.
  • Al Jaber Aviation, a member of the Al Jaber Group, has placed a firm order for two Airbus A318 Elites and has signed a letter of interest for two Airbus A380s. Al Jaber Aviation is the first company to purchase the Airbus A318 Elite in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The aircraft will be powered by CFM International CFM56-5B9/P engines.
  • Oman Air has signed a firm contract with Airbus for 5 new aircraft from the A330 Family. The order is for 3 A330-300s and 2 A330-200s. No engine choice has been made.
  • Yemenia, the official carrier of the state of Yemen, based in Sanaa, has signed a firm contract for ten Airbus A350 XWB aircraft as part of its long haul fleet modernization programme. Yemenia’s A350 XWBs will be configured in a comfortable two-class configuration with seating for 18 passengers in First Class and 265 in Economy.
  • DAE Capital, the aircraft leasing and financing division of Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE), has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to buy 100 aircraft from Airbus. The order is for 70 A320 Family and 30 A350 XWB Family aircraft.
  • Prince Alwaleed bin Talal bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, Chairman of Kingdom Holding company, has signed a firm order with Airbus for an A380 Flying Palace, becoming the first customer for the VIP version of the new double-deck airliner. … more
  • Air Arabia, the first and largest low cost carrier in the Middle East and North Africa, has signed a firm contract for 34 Airbus A320 aircraft with an option for 15 more. … more
  • Saudi Arabian Airlines, Saudi Arabia’s national airline, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for 22 Airbus A320 aircraft as part of the fleet modernisation plans. The agreement allows Saudia to increase the order by eight further A320s. … more
  • Dubai based Emirates Airline has signed a firm contract for 81 Airbus wide-body aircraft - 50 Airbus A350XWB -900 plus 20 -1000, and 11 additional A380s - in an agreement which could eventually rise to 131 aircraft. According to Airbus, this is largest ever order in terms of value. … more
  • Riyadh based National Air Services (NAS) has signed a firm contract to buy 20 Airbus A320 Family aircraft for the company’s budget airline arm, nasair, following an earlier agreement signed at the 47th International Paris Air Show in Le Bourget. The agreement includes 18 purchase rights.
  • C Jet Limited, has placed a firm order for an Airbus Corporate Jetliner (ACJ), becoming a new customer. …more

Source: Airbus

Dubai Airshow 2007 - Boeing Orders Overview

Boeing Logo Boeing could not announce as many new orders as Airbus at Dubai Airshow 2007, however some big orders have been signed.

Orders in detail

  • Royal Jordanian signed an order for two additional 787 Dreamliners. The airline also has announced an agreement to take two more 787s on lease from CIT Aerospace.
  • Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) signed a proposal acceptance at the Dubai Air Show for 100 airplanes that includes four of Boeing’s production models (70 737s and a mix of 787s, 777s and 747s). This agreement follows a memorandum of understanding to forge a strategic partnership signed by Boeing and Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) in Paris on June 18, 2007.
  • The leasing company, LCAL, has placed an order for six additional 787-8 Dreamliners, expanding its fleet to 21 aircraft. The deal, worth approximately $972 million at list prices, previously was listed on the Boeing Orders and Deliveries Web site and attributed to an unidentified customer.
  • Qatar Airways ordered 30 787 Dreamliners and five 777 Freighters. The airplane deal is valued at over $6.1 billion at list prices. The airplanes were previously listed on Boeing’s Orders & Deliveries Web site as unidentified.
  • Emirates announced an order for 12 777-300ERs on the opening day of the Dubai Air Show. The approximate value of the airplane deal is $3.2 billion at list prices. The airplane order was previously listed on Boeing’s Orders & Deliveries website as unidentified.

Source: Boeing




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