Ryanair off the runway in Lodz (Poland)

Ryanair flight FR1624 from Lodz (Poland) to Nottingham East Midlands (England) skidded off the runway during taxi – the nose wheel of the aircraft sank into the soft stopway surface off the beginning of the runway. The aircraft, which is undamaged, was moving slowly and had not started its take off procedure.

All passengers disembarked normally from the aircraft using the front steps and were bussed to the terminal. The aircraft suffered no damage and engineers are on route to move the aircraft to the terminal building. Ryanair is currently arranging coaches to bring passengers to Warsaw where a spare aircraft will bring them to East Midlands.

Source: ryanair


Tunisair chooses A350s, A330s and A320s

North African airline Tunisair has signed a letter of acceptance of the Airbus proposal for the acquisition of three A350-800s, three A330-200s and ten A320s, as part of an important fleet development plan that will modernise and expand the fleet of this growing airline. With this acquisition, Tunisair is the third African airline to order the all-new A350 XWB. Tunisair currently already has 12 A320s, four A319s of which two with extended range capability and three A300-600s in operation.

The all-new, eco-efficient A350s will provide the right aircraft at the right time for the long-term development plans of Tunisair for long haul routes to North America and Asia. Meanwhile, the A330s will allow the airline to modernize its wide-body fleet and seamlessly enter the long haul market with new routes to North America in the near future with the most modern and cost efficient aircraft in the market today. Furthermore, the A320s will allow Tunisair to renew and expand its regional operations with more efficient and cost effective aircraft complementing its current fleet.

“This acquisition is part of a major fleet development that will allow Tunisair to prepare for the future and take up the market opportunities that exist for our airline,” said Mr. Chettaoui, President and CEO of Tunisair group. “The A330s and later on the A350 will really complement our A320 fleet which is already performing extremely well. This acquisition will provide Tunisair with the most modern, efficient and comfortable aircraft that perfectly respond to our needs in terms of range, passenger capacity and operational costs”, he continued.

The longstanding relationship started in 1980, when Tunisair placed its first order for an Airbus A300B4. It has built up its Airbus fleet from then onwards, with the first A320 order placed in 1988, one of the first orders for Africa. In another pioneering move, with the order in 2006 for the A319 Extended-Range, Tunisair was the first airline to start operating this aircraft type in Africa, benefiting from Airbus’ continuous efforts for innovation and technological advancements.

Source: Airbus

Lion Air – 10th 737-900ER Delivered

The Boeing Company and Jakarta-based Lion Air on Monday celebrated the delivery of the airline’s 10th Next-Generation 737-900ER (Extended Range) airplane. The airplane will be used by the airline to expand its service with new destinations throughout South and Southeast Asia. The airline’s 737-900ERs are equipped with performance-enhancing Blended Winglets, which improve fuel efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions by up to 4 percent.

Source: Boeing

Patent filed for diagonal seating rows

A patent for diagonal seating rows has been filed at the US Patent and Trademark Office. For wide-body aircraft, this arrangement allows a possible 12-abrest (3-6-3) configuration in Economy Class. Welcome to the slave ship! In addition, the drawing features triangular lavatories for optimal room usage.
Let’s hope that no carrier will adopt this strange seating configuration!

A seating arrangement for a vehicle, especially an aircraft, in which seats are arranged in a plurality of generally parallel ranks, each rank extending in a fore-and-aft direction, and in a plurality of rows, each row extending at an angle other than a right angle with respect to said fore-and-aft direction and wherein adjacent seats in a row overlap in a transverse direction. In the preferred embodiment, the seats of a row also overlap in said fore-and-aft direction and include a truncated armrest at one side of the seat arranged to fit behind an adjacent seat. The seats further include an armrest at the other side of the seat, the armrest comprising a bar which extends from the rear of the seat so that a portion of one seat is located beneath the armrest provided at said other side of an adjacent seat.

Patent for diagonal seat rows in airplanes

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office

Photo – 787 Dreamliner Static Test Airframe moved to Testing Rig

Boeing moved the 787 Dreamliner static test airframe from its Final Assembly facility in Everett to its structural test rig friday evening. The test rig is located only 1,000 feet away from Final Assembly at the Everett factory.
Some assembly remains to be completed on the static airframe. That work will be completed concurrently with test set-up. Test set up is expected to begin immediately, with tests commencing this summer.
“During static tests we apply loads to the airplane structure that simulate both normal operation as well as extreme flight conditions,” said Randy Harley, vice president of Engineering & Technology for the 787 program. “We monitor the airplane to confirm analytical predictions and make sure the structure holds up to these conditions.”
Movement of the static airframe clears the way to begin assembly of the third 787 to enter the flight test program. Most pieces of the third airplane arrived in Everett earlier this month. All assemblies for Airplane #3 are now in Everett, and the airplane will be loaded into the first position of Final Assembly early next week.

Boeing 787 Dreamliner Static Test Airframe
Boeing 787 Dreamliner Static Test Airframe

Boeing 787 Dreamliner Static Test Airframe Boeing 787 Dreamliner Static Test Airframe

Photo Credit: The Boeing Company

See more pictures at Flickr: Boeing 787 4-25-08 Set by moonm

Source: Boeing

Biman Bangladesh orders 777s and 787s

Biman Bangladesh Airlines and Boeing yesterday announced the airline’s order for four 777-300ER (Extended Range) and four 787-8 Dreamliner airplanes at a signing ceremony in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh.
Biman Bangladesh Airlines, which began as a government-owned national carrier in 1972, became Bangladesh’s largest public limited company in 2007. The order for new Boeing airplanes represents a major step forward in the airline’s reorganization and growth plans. The airline also has purchase rights for four 777s and four 787s.
“Clearly, Biman needs modern, fuel-efficient and reliable airplanes to move forward with our expansion and better serve our country’s growing travel needs,” said Dr. M. A. Momen, Biman’s managing director. “Our competitive assessment of both the 777-300ER and the 787-8 Dreamliner was extensive and has led to our making the very best decision based on our own defined operational parameters. We have selected the best airplanes to fulfill our mission requirements – and that mission is the continued growth and success of Biman Bangladesh Airlines.”
Biman currently connects Bangladesh with 18 countries around the world, and has agreements in place that will allow it to serve a total of 42 countries as it implements its growth plan.

Source: Boeing

Red Bull Gives Canadians Wings

Red Bull Air RaceDetroit, MI (USA) & Windsor, ON (Canada) will be the third stop on a ten city worldwide tour to make up the 2008 Red Bull Air Race World Series schedule. On May 31 and June 1, twelve of the world’s best pilots will introduce Canadians to a new dimension in motorsport. The pilots will pull up to 10 Gs with unprecedented skill and precision in their high-performance race planes just feet above the Detroit River in a captivating race against the clock.

The Detroit-Windsor race will follow the San Diego stop on May 3 and 4, and the 2008 season opener that took place in Abu Dhabi, UAE on April 10 and 11 where British racer Paul Bonhomme brought a first-place finish back to Great Britain. In 2007, 4.5 million spectators attended 10 stops worldwide.

2008 Red Bull Air Race World Series - Abu Dhabi
Red Bull Air Race 2008 season opener in Abu Dhabi

The Detroit-Windsor race will be staged along the Detroit River, which is one of the world’s most trafficked international shipping lanes. There will be two ticketed areas on both the Detroit and Windsor sides of the river that will offer all the necessary amenities and services including Jumbotron screens to get a birds-eye view of the race action.

Windsor’s rich knowledge in the automotive industry as well as its abundance of sports fans make it an ideal stop for the Red Bull Air Race World Series. The city shares an international border with the US and is located on the other side of the Detroit River. This race will mark the first time the Red Bull Air Race will take place between two countries at the same time, making world history for the Series and for the cities of Windsor, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan.

“This is a world class event, an event that is so large that I don’t think people from Detroit or Windsor have truly grasped how significant it is,” said Windsor Mayor Eddie Francis at the official launch of the event today at the Detroit City Airport. “We are very proud to be part of this unique opportunity: the first time the Red Bull Air Race has taken over two countries at the same time. Once again building on that wonderful legacy of two nations working together, two regions working together, and two cities providing the event, providing the fans, providing opportunity.”

“The city of Detroit is proud to welcome the Red Bull Air Race World Series on our international waterfront this May,” added Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick. “This is yet another example of how Detroit is an ideal host for premium sporting events like the Red Bull Air Race, which will help further place our fine city on a global stage.”

This will be the first year a Canadian city is included in the Red Bull Air Race Series. The 2008 Series returns to London, Budapest, Porto, and Perth, which all held races in 2007. Tickets to the Detroit-Windsor race can be purchased at www.redbullairrace.com.

Each race will comprise two days of competition: Qualifying Day and Race Day. The overall series points leader will be crowned Red Bull Air Race World Champion after the season finale in Perth, Australia in November. In the Red Bull Air Race, the world’s best pilots race at speeds reaching 260 mph, enduring forces of up to 10 Gs as they navigate a low-level, aerial race track made of air-filled pylons.

Source: Red Bull

Airbus and Pratt & Whitney to test Geared Turbofan concept

As part of Airbus’ routine and on-going research into new technologies for the long term, Airbus and Pratt & Whitney announce an agreement to flight test a technology demonstrator version of Pratt & Whitney’s new Geared Turbofan™ engine. The tests will be performed on Airbus’ own A340 Flight Test aircraft during the fourth quarter of 2008.

The Geared Turbofan engine is one option Airbus is testing and the results will contribute to Airbus’ overall assessment of the different new engine technologies proposed by the engine manufacturers and the benefits they could bring for the future. At this point in time, the tests do not imply either a technological or a business decision on future product developments.

The Pratt & Whitney Geared Turbofan (GTF) is a high-bypass geared turbofan engine currently selected as the exclusive engine for both the Mitsubishi MRJ and Bombardier CSeries regional jets. The project was originally known as the Advanced Technology Fan Integrator (ATFI). The GTF allows the low-pressure section of the engine to rotate at a different frequency to that of the fan, enabling both components to operate at their most efficient speeds.

Pratt & Whitney claims the GTF will be 10% to 15% more fuel efficient than current engines as well as being substantially quieter.

Source: Airbus & Wikipedia

Aviation Capital Group orders 17 737

The Boeing Company and U.S.-based commercial airplane leasing company Aviation Capital Group today announced an order for 17 Next-Generation 737 airplanes. This order was previously accounted for on Boeing’s Orders and Deliveries Web site attributed to an unidentified customer. The airplanes will be equipped with performance-enhancing Blended Winglets, which improve fuel efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions by up to 4 percent.

Aviation Capital Group Next-Generation Boeing 737
Photo Credit: The Boeing Company

Source: Boeing