Russia’s UTAir plans to acquire as many as 24 Sukhoi Superjet 100-95s as replacements for its aged Tupolev Tu-134s, Sukhoi general director Mikhail Pogosyan confirmed during a late November press conference held at the airline’s headquarters in the western Siberian city of Khanty-Mansiysk. UTAir, Russia’s fourth largest airline, expects to take delivery of its first SSJ100 in 2013.
Aviation International News » January 2011
Azul Linhas Aereos, Brazil’s newest discount airline, registered a 79.71-percent load factor and carried 2.2 million passengers last year, its first full year of operation, and the fledgling carrier expects to turn a profit this year.
Swiss regional airline Baboo, based in Geneva, and Darwin Airline, headquartered at Lugano Airport in southern Switzerland, an-nounced in late November that they have decided to merge. In fact, the move looked more like a takeover by Darwin of a competitor plagued by a notorious lack of profits.
The October 1 merger of United and Continental Airlines has exhumed an old bone of contention between mainline pilots and their management that stands to profoundly affect regional airlines and the Air Line Pilots Association-represented brethren employed by them.
Delta Air Lines plans this month to start installing onboard Wi-Fi on 223 regional jets flown by Delta Connection carriers, making Delta the first U.S. carrier to deploy the service across its entire mainline and dual-class regional fleets.
The Teamsters-represented pilots of Seattle-based Horizon Air ratified a new five-year labor contract in late November, officially ending some four years of negotiations, the airline announced last month. Nearly 77 percent of Horizon’s 613 pilots voted, and some 59 percent of those voted in favor of the agreement.
Gurgaon, India-based SpiceJet placed a firm order last month for 15 Bombardier Q400 turboprops in a deal worth some $446 million, according to the Canadian manufacturer. The low-fare airline also took options on another 15 airplanes.
Lufthansa has placed a new firm order for eight Embraer E195s for use within the Lufthansa Regional system, the Brazilian manufacturer announced last month. The deal raises the total number of Embraer E-Jets ordered by the German airline to 38.
Eurocopter’s compound helicopter demonstrator, the X3 (“X cube”), met its first speed target on November 29 when it achieved 180 ktas in level flight at “reduced engine power.” The modified Dauphin has also expanded its flight envelope in altitude and bank angles. The X3 features a conventional main rotor and two propellers on stub wings.
Late last year the NTSB issued recommendations (A-10-124 through -128) in response to the 2009 fatal Hudson River midair between a Piper Lance and a tour helicopter that killed nine over New Jersey. Among those recommendations: the Safety Board wants the FAA to develop standards for, and then mandate installation of, electronic advisory systems for electronic news gathering, air tour and passenger charter helicopters.