Airbus continues to consider stretched, longer-range and cargo versions of its A380 very large airliner, but is no longer studying shortbody or combination passenger/cargo variants, according to Richard Carcaillet, head of A380 marketing.
Rapid economic growth in the United Arab Emirates is fueling the expansion of Dubai-based helicopter operator Helidubai. Less than two years after its inception, the company, owned by the government of Dubai, has embarked on a fleet expansion with both passenger and aerial-work aircraft. In addition, it is also striving to help create dedicated heliports and helipads in the burgeoning city.
Emirates-CAE Flight Training has signed a three-year contract to provide helicopter training for Indian-based offshore helicopter operator Global Vectra Helicorp. Global Vectra flight crews will undergo training on a Bell 412 full-flight simulator at ECFT’s facility in Dubai. The agreement covers recurrent and initial type training.
United Arab Emirates-based Prestige Jet has signed an agreement to provide EMS flights for Flight Ambulance International (FAI). The company will operate a fleet of Bombardier Learjet 55s from bases in Abu Dhabi and Al Ain. FAI is based in Nuremberg, Germany, and provides evacuation flights out of Africa. The Middle East is a growing part of its business, already accounting for 8 percent of operations.
Jet Aviation announced last month it has begun construction of its new FBO and maintenance facility at the Dubai International Airport, United Arab Emirates. Expected to be operational in January, the new facility will offer scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, aircraft modifications and avionics installations and retrofits for a range of business aircraft.
The Airbus A380 powered by Engine Alliance GP7200 engines received joint European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and FAA type certification last Friday. The approval came a year and two days after the EASA and FAA issued the Rolls-Royce-powered A380 its certification, on Dec. 12, 2006. MSN009, Airbus’ test aircraft powered by the Engine Alliance turbofans, completed nearly 800 hours of test flying.
Anyone with even a superficial knowledge of the stratospheric ambitions of the Middle East air transport sector generally, and mind-boggling wealth of the Arabian Gulf states in particular, had expected the 2007 Dubai Airshow to be an epic event. But it is doubtful that anyone outside the top tiers of the region’s airline managements really anticipated the volume of business announced over just five days (November 11 to 15).
Two years after 9/11, Dubai’s biennial air show will declare itself to be firmly back to business as usual when it opens next month (December 7 to 11) in the United Arab Emirates. Last time, the event convincingly put on a brave face in the wake of 9/11 and the U.S.-led war against Al Qaeda and its Taliban allies in Afghanistan (just 500 miles north).
Dubai may harbor ambitions of one day hosting an airshow to outshine those held in Paris and Farnborough, but on one score the Gulf emirate is already well ahead. The nearly $80 billion worth of aircraft sales commitments announced through the first two days of the show smashed all-time records and easily surpassed even an impressive tally recorded at June’s Paris Air Show.
Emirates Airlines has decided to add a Honeywell safety upgrade intended to prevent runway incursions to its fleet of more than 100 airliners. The Runway Awareness and Advisory System (RAAS) is a software upgrade of the airplanes’ existing ground-proximity alerting system that warns pilots of potentially dangerous situations on runways and taxiways.