Tag / Airbus

The weekly rollerboard 12 January

AA’s inaugural A321T service. Image: Edward Russell.

This week Australia’s mantle for offering the best transcontinental airline product in the world – which Australian’s unjustifiably love to pick apart as woefully inadequate – was challenged for the first time in perhaps two decades as American Airlines launched its new premium A321T service from New York JFK to Los Angeles.

Compared with the past decade of woefully inadequate product offer onboard American carriers, the product reinvention is a welcome return to the days of glamorous transcon air travel. There will be a 30 per cent increase in the number of first class seats AA offers as business class and economy decline by 13 per cent and 27 per cent respectively. Continued capacity rationalisation carries through to the strategic relaunch with AA’s total New York-Los Angeles capacity decreasing in favour of frequency growth from ten to thirteen services daily.

Continue reading “The weekly rollerboard 12 January” »

Looking to the sky in 2014.

Our 2013 retrospective, and Airbus breaking with tradition on A350 MSN2 , inspired me to take a look at what this dynamic industry might have in-store for 2014:

A350 MSN2 the first test aircraft to be fitted with a full cabin interior in its new carbon fibre scheme. Image: Airbus SAS.

CASA Regulation
Some big regulatory changes will take place in 2014. In particular, CASA will need to guide the Australia’s airlines on the use of Personal Electronic Devices (PEDs) following changes to regulatory legislation by the FAA in the US and EASA in Europe. Currently Australian carriers are self regulating in this respect, but moving independently as a way to gain competitive advantage will only create headaches for crew in enforcing use on-board.

 

Image: Graham Cook

Domestic capacity
The war will continue until the end of the first half, bringing further revenue pressure to the Qantas and Virgin groups. Qantas has invested too much the public rhetoric behind in its strategy, to back away now would look like it was giving in. Not the best market image to present given its current financial position. Expect the Federal Government to make small changes to the level of single foreign ownership to the Qantas Sale Act.

 

 

 

Sydney Airport
The political future of Tony Abbott’s Government depends on their ability to deliver a courageous bipartisan policy decision. With a promise of a decision, a ‘government of no surprises’ will now need to deliver with a real commitment on Badgery’s Creek. This will come as a stage 1 single runway development, with no rail connection, because Abbott’s made it clear he doesn’t like trains. Also expect a change to the slot caps at Sydney Airport, starting with the 05:00-06:00am landing window.

Continue reading “Looking to the sky in 2014.” »

A350XWB takes to the skies on its maiden five hour long sortie.

Second A350 takes to the skies.

Sometimes I manage to come across the most random stories, while the Xtra large ones fly under the radar. A350-900 MSN3 has officially joined MSN1 in the sky on the A350 test programme after completing its maiden five hour long sortie earlier this week.

Both aircraft are fitted with a heavy flight test instrumentation package and will continue to be used for aircraft aeroelasticity, handling and performance testing. Since it’s first flight in June MSN1 has accumulated 330 flight test hours devoted to the identification and freeze of all flap and slat configurations, loads and aeroelastic testing and evaluation of the aircraft’s handling characteristics and systems’ operation throughout the operational envelope. Continue reading “Second A350 takes to the skies.” »

Rendering of Lufthansa's 777-9X. Image: Deutsche Lufthansa AG

Boeing’s 777-9X is almost go as Lufthansa commits to order for 34.

Lufthansa has become a launch customer for the yet to be launched next generation Boeing 777X project ordering 34 777-9Xs in addition to 25 Airbus A350-900s, with options and purchase rights for an additional 60 aircraft – 30 each of the 777-9X and A350-900.

The 777-9X will be powered by the General Electric GE9X and feature a new advanced composite wing, which at 71 metres will be the longest aircraft wing Boeing has produced. The result? An estimated 20 per cent better fuel efficiency and a 15% reduction in operating costs over the 777-300ER resulting in the lowest seat kilometre costs in the industry.

Continue reading “Boeing’s 777-9X is almost go as Lufthansa commits to order for 34.” »

MSN1 powers up for the first time. Image: Airbus SAS.

Next steps for the next generation.

With the worst news for airlines behind them, Airbus and Boeing are now making fast tracks in the development of their next generation aircraft families. On May 30 in Everett, Boeing commenced final assembly – the process of joining the wings, fuselage sections, and integrating systems – of the first Boeing 787-9 on the former 767 […]

Image: Airbus SAS.

Ain’t she pretty? Airbus rolls out painted A350XWB.

Airbus has rolled out its first Airbus A350-900 MSN001 in its full paint scheme at its Toulouse production facility. Airbus is yet to set an official date for the maiden sortie of the prototype flight test aircraft. Fitted with Rolls Royce Trent XWB engines the aircraft has spent close to a week in the paint […]

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Airbus’ future of flight

For an industry so focused on innovation and efficiency, commercial aviation is seemingly on an eternally long, straight taxiway to deliver the next great fuel saving. Important in an industry facing extreme operational pressures, but what comes next? Airbus’ 2050 Concept Aircraft and Smart Skies are more than just a funky conceptualisation, Airbus sees them […]