Despite the torrential rain at Le Bourget yesterday, Airbus and Boeing both notched up some key commitments. While the latter edged closer to being able to launch the 787-10X, with interest from Gecas, its rival across the Atlantic also courted the world’s leading lessors, with ILFC ordering even more A320neos; and Doric placing an order for A380s.
The oft-critiqued Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental (747-8I) program appears finally to have found its stride following a series of development delays and struggles with performance shortcomings. Needing to adjust to soft demand in the very-large widebody market, however, Boeing (Chalets A324 and B321) recently cut 747-8 production rates from two to 1.75 per month and its 20-year projection for the large widebody market segment by 4 percent, leading to inevitable questions about the long-term viability of the latest iteration of the Queen of the Skies.
With increasing numbers of Airbus A380s in their fleets, Asian and Middle East airlines are growing impatient to start deploying the super-large widebodies on services to and from India. But the Indian government’s policy of sheltering national carrier Air India from competition is preventing carriers such as Lufthansa, Emirates and Singapore Airlines (SIA) from using aircraft larger than the Boeing 747 under the terms of existing air services agreements.
Bombardier has selected Lufthansa Technik’s nice HD cabin management and in-flight entertainment system for its upgraded Challenger 350, thus adding audio and video on-demand distribution to personal devices.
Lufthansa Technik said that its nice HD system has a flexible, open IP architecture, based on a wired and wireless broadband Ethernet network. The bottom line in the Challenger 350 will be that each passenger can watch individually chosen movies on an Apple, Android or Windows 8 device and also push content from the device to an embedded display.
Kellstrom Commercial Aerospace has acquired AirLiance Materials from Lufthansa Technik. Under the terms of the deal, AirLiance’s current CEO, Roscoe Musselwhite, will become president and CEO of Kellstrom Commercial Aerospace and a member of Kellstrom’s board of directors. His initial responsibility will be to integrate the two commercial operations into a single, integrated organization.
Cabin MRO, completions and refurbishment giant Lufthansa Technik (Booth 1031) is expanding its innovation engineering capability at its base in Hamburg, Germany. This year, according to Andrew Muirhead, who runs the Innovation Business Unit, the 55-person core team will be boosted by seven additional posts, and further staff positions will be required in 2014 and 2015.
At the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, Lufthansa Technik and Schott presented a new development in cabin lighting systems for aircraft. For the first time, aircraft owners can take advantage of LED technology while avoiding the color changes that occur when LEDs age. The new Nicemood system, which has already been approved for use in aircraft, mixes and regulates the light output of different diodes, for what the developers call significant cost savings compared with traditional lighting and a dramatic improvement in lighting quality.
Lufthansa Bombardier Aviation Services (LBAS) and tier-one cabin components supplier OHS Aviation Services have delivered their largest-ever single aircraft maintenance and refurbishment project.
The job, for an unidentified Asian client, included the first installation of Honeywell’s new Ovation Select cabin management system on a Bombardier airplane outside North America, according to LBAS parent company Lufthansa Technik.
Lufthansa Technik is offering a new product bundle for life-cycle support of large private and business aircraft. The service packages include access to a pool of highly qualified engineers and mechanics, worldwide material support through the Lufthansa Technik logistics network, and assured support in case of AOG incidents and other emergencies.
“Our customers will get 24/7 global free-of-charge troubleshooting hotline support for up to 10 man hours as an airside assistance regardless of where the aircraft operates,” said Walter Heerdt, senior v-p of marketing and sales. “This means that after signing a standby support agreement, no further fees or charges will apply until the customer requests additional service at prior agreed-to prices and conditions.”
Engineering and troubleshooting questions will be handled by Lufthansa Technik’s central maintenance control center.