The intake of titanium by the global aviation industry is predicted to rise dramatically over this decade with the production of next-generation commercial jets made of advanced construction materials gearing up. Today, this industry consumes 40 percent of the world’s titanium supply. According to an independent analysis, demand for titanium in commercial aviation will increase from 42,000 metric tons in 2011 to more than 49,000 tons this year and then rise to 72,000 tons in 2016.
The aerospace and transportation systems division of the Liebherr Group represented only 11 percent of the multinational group’s 2011 turnover of €8.3 billion ($11.5 billion). And its customer service facility in Saline, Michigan, a city of 9,000 people near Detroit, is a long way from Liebherr’s headquarters in the picturesque town of Bulle, Switzerland.
Airbus plans to start building a new A320-family assembly plant in Mobile, Ala., next summer, the European airframer confirmed today, marking yet another expansion of its narrowbody production ambitions. Scheduled for completion at the beginning of 2016, the plant will produce between 40 and 50 A319s, A320s and A321s annually and employ 1,000, estimates Airbus.
EADS incurred a further charge of €158 million ($202 million) during this year’s first quarter due to higher-than-expected costs associated with retrofit repairs to cracks in wing rib feet of Airbus A380s.
Seca has launched its Global Engine Management Service (Gems), which is designed to support business aviation operators with services ranging from simple powerplant support to MRO, on-site consultation and maintenance, rental engines, and even purchase and sales support. Contracts for Gems can be pay-by-the-hour, by-the-event or time-and-materials–the operators decide what works best for them, said the company.
Anti-icing surfaces under development at GE and EADS could one day reduce and possibly even eliminate the need for existing anti-icing techniques. Research organizations at the two major aerospace companies are currently working on surfaces that would naturally repel ice without using energy.
Eurofighter signed a new, five-year support contract with NETMA, the NATO management agency that represents the four European partner nations in the combat aircraft program. As before, the Eurofighter industrial partners will deliver support to the individual air forces. Alenia values its part of the deal, to support the Italian air force, at more than $660 million. BAE Systems says its contract to support the UK Royal Air Force (RAF) is worth $708.5 million. EADS values its future support to the German and Spanish air forces at more than $1.1 billion.
In business since 1750, family owned and operated Catherineau has been in the aircraft completions game for only 50 years. That is a relatively short chapter in the Catherineau history but nevertheless not insignificant, considering that business aviation was only just coming into its own 50 years ago. In 1750, and for centuries thereafter, Catherineau built fine furniture.
Despite continuing problems with both the A380 and A350XWB airliner programs, Airbus still serves as the main cash cow at European aerospace group EADS.
Southeast Asia, rather than the behemoth economies of China and India, provided the bulk of the sales impetus for the 2012 Singapore Airshow. More specifically, it was from Singapore’s neighbor Indonesia that the latest wave of airline fleet modernization came when Lion Air confirmed a massive order for 201 of Boeing’s new 737Max-9 narrowbodies, plus 29 of the existing 737-900ERs.