By the end of the year, CFM (OE 22) plans to have put together and tested around 20 Leap-1A/B/C turbofans, in preparation for their first flights next year and in 2016 on their respective application airframes. The Franco-American engine manufacturer is also gearing up for a swift production ramp-up, planned to reach an annual 1,700 engines by the end of the decade. The Leap will power the Airbus A320neo (Leap-1A), the Boeing 737 Max (Leap-1B) and Comac C919 (Leap-1C) narrowbodies.
Airbus A320 family
Certification in hand, Airbus Helicopters is endeavoring to ensure a faultless entry into service of the EC175 medium twin, a critical product for the company in the highly competitive offshore oil-and-gas market. The first delivery, to Belgium-based operator NHV, is slated for the second half of this year, almost five years after the type first flew.
Embraer’s preliminary design review of the E190-E2 at the end of May marked the completion of the project’s joint definition, the company announced on Tuesday. Embraer has also completed wind tunnel tests on the 106-seat jet, scheduled to enter commercial operations before July 2018. Development continues with the critical design review, meant to validate product maturity ahead of prototype production.
CFM International has begun ground testing of the first Leap-1B engine developed to power Boeing’s new 737 Max family of narrowbody airliners. The joint venture between Snecma and GE announced today that ground tests began three days ahead of schedule on June 13 and that the 23,000- to 28,000-pound-thrust turbofan already has achieved full takeoff thrust.
Airbus A350-900 flight test aircraft MSN3 has completed hot weather testing in Al Ain, in the United Arab Emirates, Airbus announced Wednesday.
Pratt & Whitney’s launch on Tuesday of a 35,000-pound-thrust version of its Geared Turbofan extends the family’s power range by another 2,000 pounds, giving Airbus A321neo customers enough range and payload capability to effectively operate from such hot and high locations as Mexico City and Bogota. Dubbed the PW1135G-JM, the engine gets its extra thrust from leftover development margin extracted from the design of the family as a whole, thereby requiring no hardware or design changes, explained Pratt & Whitney vice president of engineering Tom Prete.
Stuttgart, Germany-based DC Aviation, an EASA Part 145-certified maintenance operation, has acquired Cayman Island OTAR-145 certification. DC Aviation has been offering both line and base maintenance services for various types of executive jet and the Airbus A320 series since 1999. Cayman Island certification will allow the MRO to expand its services to VP-registered aircraft effective immediately.
UK carrier EasyJet said it will apply new technologies, including operating small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), to maintain its Airbus fleet. The airline is also developing 3D virtual reality and augmented reality technology, customized engineering applications and early fault prognosis. It is installing Panasonic Toughpad tablets in cockpits fleetwide.
Alpha Star Aviation Services, the newest player in the Saudi private aviation market, provides flight operations, technical support, VIP flight-support services and administration, with a focus on air ambulance flights after being set up in 2010.
Statistics released this week by Airbus showed that commercial aircraft bookings for 78 airplanes in April increased its net order total for the year to 142, while Boeing’s order total for the month stood at 70, raising its 2014 net total as of May 6 to 291.