Video – The Making of Southwest Airlines Florida One

Southwest Airlines recently published this video, featuring the making of “Florida One”. N945WN, a Boeing 737-7H4, wears a special livery representing Southwest Airlines’ ties to the Sunshine State since beginning service in January of 1996. Southwest has been growing from 17 daily nonstop departures to 284 daily nonstop departures and now carries 20 percent of all air traffic to the state of Florida. And last Southwest will begin service to the seventh Florida city, Panama City Beach, on May 23, 2010.

The challenge of this plane was to recreate the Flag Logo without the use of tools, using only the drawing for reference and the stencils for outline, while at the same time making both sides exactly symmetrical.

Interesting facts:
Process time: 8 days
Number of People: 32 over 3 shifts
Paint colors: 16
Total gallons: Approximately 46
Premask (stencil outline): 15 boxes or approximately 150 different pieces to create the logo


Florida One joins thirteen other 737s in Southwest’s fleet that carry a unique paint scheme: Arizona One, California One, Illinois One, Lone Star One (Texas), Nevada One, New Mexico One, Maryland One, three Shamu aircraft (SeaWorld), Silver One (celebrating Southwest’s 25th anniversary), Triple Crown One (recognizing Southwest’s top rankings for ontime performance, baggage handling, and Customer satisfaction), and Slam Dunk One (tribute to our NBA partnership).

First USAF HC-130J Combat Rescue Tanker Rolls Out

Lockheed Martin rolled out the first of a new fleet of HC-130J combat rescue tankers for the U.S. Air Force’s Air Combat Command (ACC)

Lockheed Martin is contracted with the U.S. Air Force to build 21 C 130J Super Hercules to replace aging fleets of combat search and rescue HC-130s and special operations MC 130s. The U.S. Air Force is authorized to acquire up to 31 HC/MC 130Js (11 HCs and 20 MCs).

Lockheed Martin HC-130J Combat Rescue Tanker

The new aircraft, which is based on a KC-130J tanker baseline, will have the Enhanced Service Life Wing, Enhanced Cargo Handling System, a Universal Aerial Refueling Receptacle Slipway Installation (boom refueling receptacle), an electro-optical/infrared sensor, a combat systems operator station on the flight deck, and provisions for the large aircraft infrared countermeasures system.

Photo & Source: Lockheed Martin

Schedule – Lufthansa A380 Test Flights

Some news for our German visitors. 😉 Lufthansa’s new flagship, the Airbus A380, will undergo a number of test flights in early June.

Before the first Lufthansa Airbus A380 flies the German soccer team to Johannesburg (South Africa) for the Football World Cup on Sunday, 6 June, Lufthansa will carry out numerous flights. The flights – with no passengers on board – are required as part of the qualifications for pilots to acquire a licence to fly this aircraft type. In addition to take-offs and landings, the flight tuition includes line training on scheduled routes to prepare the pilots to operate scheduled services for the airline with the A380.

The Lufthansa A380, named “Frankfurt am Main“, will be seen at the following airports in Germany, Austria and Switzerland:

Monday, 31 May
Full-day flight training at Karlsruhe Airport.

Tuesday, 1 June
Full-day flight training at Leipzig Airport.

Wednesday, 2 June
Line training on the route Frankfurt – Stuttgart – Zürich – Vienna – Dresden – Linz – Munich – Frankfurt.

Thursday, 3 June
Line training on the route Frankfurt – Berlin-Tegel – Hanover – Hamburg – Bremen – Düsseldorf – Cologne/Bonn – Frankfurt.

The first Airbus A380 is scheduled for delivery to Lufthansa on 19 May.

Tupolev 154M Crashed in Russia – Killing Polish President

Polish President Lech Kaczynski was killed today, when his Tupolev 154M crashed on approach to Smolensk Airport (LNX) (Russia) in poor visibility. Already on the 4th landing attempt, the Polish Air Force flight, bound from Warszawa-Okecie Airport (WAW) (Poland), struck trees and broke up. All 88 people onboard have been killed.
According to weather reports at 08:00 CET indicated a temperature at Smolensk of 1°C, Dew Point:1°C, wind from 140 degrees at 6 knots, Pressure: 1026 hPa, heavy fog.


Video – A380 Tires Blow Out on Landing

During landing at Sydney-Kingsford Smith Airport (SYD / YSSY) today a left main gear tire blew out on a Qantas Airbus A380 (VH-OQC). Flight QF32 was arriving from Singapore Changi Airport (SIN / WSSS).

The video below shows some footage that was filmed by a passenger, including some pictures from the tail cam.