Hong Kong Airlines becomes new operator of the A350 XWB

15th carrier to fly world’s newest long haul aircraft

Hong Kong Airlines has taken delivery of its first A350-900, on lease from AerCap, making the carrier the 15th airline to operate the world’s newest and most efficient twin aisle airliner. Altogether Hong Kong Airlines will acquire 21 Airbus A350 XWB, including 15 purchased directly from Airbus and six on lease from third party lessors.

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The A350 XWB will bring unrivalled eco-efficiency and a superior passenger experience to the carrier’s network. Hong Kong Airlines has configured its A350-900 with a premium three-class layout with a total of 334 seats, comprising 33 in Business Class, convertible to fully lie-flat beds, 108 in the new cabin class “Economy Comfort” and 193 in Economy Class. The aircraft features the airline’s latest cabin products, including an all-new entertainment system and full in-flight connectivity. After an initial period flying on regional routes, Hong Kong Airlines’ A350-900 will begin long haul operations in December this year, flying on the carrier’s non-stop service to Los Angeles.

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The A350 XWB features the latest aerodynamic design, carbon fibre fuselage and wings, plus new fuel-efficient Rolls-Royce engines. Together, these latest technologies translate into unrivalled levels of operational efficiency, with a 25 per cent reduction in fuel burn and emissions, and significantly lower maintenance costs. As the founding member of “Airspace by Airbus” cabin brand, the A350 XWB cabin provides passengers and crews the best in comfort, well-being and technology.

To date, Airbus has recorded a total of 848 firm orders for the A350 XWB from 45 customers worldwide, already making it one of the most successful wide-body aircraft ever. With 287 firm orders for the A350 from carriers in Asia-Pacific, the region represents over a third of total sales for the type to date.

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Boeing, EL AL Israel Airlines Celebrate Delivery of First 787 Dreamliner

TEL AVIV, IsraelAug. 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Boeing [NYSE: BA], EL AL Israel Airlines and Air Lease Corporation are celebrating the delivery of the carrier’s first Boeing 787 Dreamliner today.

EL AL leased the airplane through an agreement with Air Lease Corporation.

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The 787-9 touched down in Tel Aviv today following a nonstop, 6,746 mile (10,856 km.) delivery flight from Paine Field, adjacent to Boeing’s factory in Everett, Wash.

“The arrival of the first Boeing 787 Dreamliner is a day of pride and joy to all of us at EL AL,” said EL AL Chief Executive Officer David Maimon. “It is the highlight in the ongoing renewal of the EL AL fleet, which started a year and a half ago when we decided to order 16 Boeing 787 Dreamliners. We are happy to embark on a new journey with our first Dreamliner.”

“The arrival of the new airplanes will create a revolution in the customer experience. We have set a very high standard of service and product excellence in order to maintain our position as the first and preferred choice for passengers, travelling both to and from Israel,” said Maimon. “I am convinced that this significant procurement of 787s is a great opportunity for us to meet the highest levels expected. The Dreamliner will ensure our customers receive exceptional comfort, innovative technology, advanced aircraft and quality service.”

The 787 is a family of technologically advanced, super-efficient airplanes with new passenger-pleasing features. In addition to bringing big-jet ranges to midsize airplanes, the 787 will provide EL AL with unmatched fuel efficiency and environmental performance, using 20 to 25 percent less fuel and with 20 to 25 percent fewer emissions than the airplanes it replaces.

“We are honored to deliver the first 787 Dreamliner to our great partners at EL AL,” said Ray Conner, vice chairman, The Boeing Company. “The 787 Dreamliner will play a key role in the renewal of EL AL’s fleet and growing its network worldwide as it ushers in a new era for the airline, its employees and its customers around the globe.”

EL AL has been an all-Boeing carrier since taking delivery of its first new Boeing airplane in 1961 and currently operates a fleet of more than 40 airplanes including Next-Generation 737s, 747s, 767s and 777s.

Copyright © 1995 – 2017 Boeing.

First Japanese-Built F-35A Officially Unveiled at Nagoya Facility

The first Japanese-assembled F-35A was unveiled at the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Komaki South F-35 Final Assembly and Check Out (FACO) facility here today. The Japan F-35 FACO is operated by MHI with technical assistance from Lockheed Martin  and oversight from the U.S. Government.

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Approximately 200 people attended the ceremony including Japanese and United States government and defense industry leaders. The ceremony highlighted the strong partnership between the Japanese Ministry of Defense, U.S. Department of Defense, MHI and Lockheed Martin.

Kenji Wakamiya, senior vice minister of defense; Gen. Yoshiyuki Sugiyama, Japan Air Self Defense Force (JASDF) chief of staff; Lt. Gen. Jerry Martinez, commander, U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force; Vice Adm. Mat Winter, F-35 Program Executive Officer; Vice Adm. Dave Lewis, Defense Contract Management Agency Director; Naohiko Abe, MHI’s senior vice president and Integrated Defense & Space Systems president, and Orlando Carvalho, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, attended the milestone event.

“Seeing the first Japanese built F-35A is a testament to the global nature of this program”, said Vice Adm. Mat Winter, F-35 Program Executive Officer.“This state of the art assembly facility, staffed with a talented and motivated workforce, enables us to leverage industry’s unique talents and technological know-how to produce the world’s best multi-role fighter.The F-35 will enhance the strength of our security alliances and reinforce long-established bonds with our allies through training opportunities, exercises, and military-to-military events.”

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The Japanese Ministry of Defense competitively selected the F-35A as the JASDF’s next-generation air defense fighter in December 2011, with a Foreign Military Sales program of record of 42 F-35As. The first four JASDF F-35As were previously delivered from the Fort Worth, Texas, production facility. Subsequent deliveries of 38 F-35A aircraft will come from the FACO here in Japan.

Additionally, the U.S. Department of Defense selected the Nagoya FACO in 2014 for the North Asia-Pacific regional heavy airframe Maintenance Repair Overhaul & Upgrade (MROU) facility.

“Building upon our enduring relationship with Japanese industry, we are fully committed to our F-35 production partnership with MHI and our support to the Japan Ministry of Defense,” Carvalho said. “The skilled workers who achieved this milestone know firsthand the F-35’s capability and how this aircraft will only strengthen the U.S.-Japan Security Alliance, thereby building upon Japan’s strategic vision to ensure the Alliance remains strong for decades to come.”

©2017 Lockheed Martin Corporation

China Aviation Supplies Holding Company signs GTA for 140 Airbus aircraft

Airbus’ leading single- and twin-aisle aircraft meet the diverse needs of Chinese customers

China Aviation Supplies Holding Company (CAS) has signed with Airbus a General Terms Agreement (GTA) for the purchase of a total of 140 aircraft. The agreement comprises of 100 A320 Family aircraft and 40 A350 XWB Family aircraft, reflecting the strong demand of Chinese airlines in all market segments including domestic, low cost, regional and international long haul.

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The GTA was signed in Berlin by Tom Enders, Airbus CEO, and Sun Bo, Executive Vice President of CAS, in the presence of visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

“This is a great endorsement for our leading products in both single aisle and wide body segments”, said Tom Enders. “China is today one of the world’s most important markets for aviation, and we are honoured to support the development and rapid growth of China’s civil aviation with our competitive product portfolio.”

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The world’s passenger aircraft fleet above 100 seats is set to more than double in the next 20 years to over 40,000 planes as traffic is forecast to grow at 4.4 percent per year. Emerging markets such as China continue to be an engine for growth, with domestic traffic to become the world’s largest market, according to Airbus’ latest Global Market Forecast 2017-2036.

By the end of May 2017, the in-service Airbus fleet with Chinese operators totaled some 1,440 aircraft, of which nearly 1,230 are A320 Family planes. The A350 XWB has received valuable endorsements from several Chinese customers. The unrivalled operational performance and cabin comfort of the A350 XWB will give Chinese airlines a competitive edge to attract more passengers on international routes.

© Airbus S.A.S. 2017

Textron Aviation rolls out first production Cessna Citation Longitude

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WICHITA, Kan. (June 2017) – Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT) company, announced it has rolled out the first production unit of the Cessna Citation Longitude, the company’s latest clean-sheet design, super-midsize business jet. State-of-the-art assembly and fabrication tools and techniques bring exceptional quality and superior fit and finish to this revolutionary aircraft.

 “The Citation Longitude sets a new standard in the super-midsize segment, not only through the aircraft’s design and performance, but also in the way we are manufacturing it,” said Ron Draper, senior vice president, Integrated Supply Chain. “We’re incorporating a number of new and innovative fabrication and assembly techniques that will improve processes, reduce the number of parts and provide excellent quality and precision that will aid in the overall maintainability of the aircraft.”

 The Longitude production program takes advantage of new technologies such as monolithic machining where major assemblies are milled from a single piece of metal rather than assembled from smaller pieces, reducing the number of parts and resulting in more precise tolerances for easier assembly. Textron Aviation has also employed and expanded vertical tooling on the assembly line of the Longitude. First utilized on the Citation Latitude midsize jet, the vertical tooling stations provide enhanced ergonomics for employees and make more efficient use of factory space.

 “Careful attention to detail, combined with advanced manufacturing techniques results in a production process that greatly benefits our customers,” Draper said. “We are able to move more quickly from concept to delivery with a high-quality product that we know will exceed the expectations of our customers.”

 This aircraft will join the company’s demonstration fleet this summer and will travel the world to showcase the Longitude’s amazing capabilities and class-leading interior to customers.

 The first Longitude flew in October 2016 and to date, the flight test program’s four aircraft have accumulated more than 550 hours. A fifth aircraft will join the flight test program this summer, showcasing the company’s dedication and commitment to getting the aircraft in the hands of its customers. The Longitude is expected to enter the market by the end of the year.

 About the Citation Longitude

With a range of 3,500 nautical miles and full fuel payload of 1,600 pounds, the Citation Longitude is set to elevate passenger expectations in the super-midsize class by delivering the quietest cabin, lowest cabin altitude (5,950 feet), more standard features and a comfortable, bespoke interior. With seating for up to 12 passengers, including an optional crew jump seat, the Longitude features a stand-up, 6-foot tall flat-floor cabin. A standard double-club configuration allows the most legroom in the super-midsize class. Fully berthable seats are designed and manufactured in-house and a class-leading walk-in baggage compartment is accessible in flight. State-of-the-art cabin technology allows passengers to manage their environment and entertainment from any mobile device, while standard high-speed internet maximizes in-flight productivity.

 The clean-sheet design of the Longitude integrates the latest technology throughout the aircraft, bringing customers the lowest ownership costs in this class. It features the next evolution of the Garmin G5000 flight deck and is powered by FADEC-equipped Honeywell HTF7700L turbofan engines with fully integrated autothrottles. With Garmin’s new Head-up Display (GHD 2100) and enhanced vision capability, the Longitude facilitates eyes-up flying. The spacious cockpit incorporates easier access and an ergonomic design that fully focuses on crew comfort and efficiency.

 No super-midsize business jet offers more range, greater payload or higher cruise speed at a lower expected total ownership cost. The Longitude is designed to feature the longest maintenance intervals in its class – 800 hours or 18 months – expected to make it the most cost effective to operate in its category.

Copyright © 2017 Textron Aviation