Boeing (Booth U23) has secured a launch customer for the new version of its electronic logbook (ELB): Singapore Airlines (SIA). Developed with Albuquerque, New Mexico-based Ultramain Systems, the ELB is designed to improve communications between pilots, ground crews, maintenance technicians and engineering personnel. SIA will install the ELB on its Boeing 777s.
Mubadala Aerospace and several of its subsidiaries are at the Singapore Airshow (Booth No. D11). Much of the emphasis for the fast-growing Middle East group is on opportunities for it to develop its maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) business in the Middle East.
Lufthansa Technik Philippines (LTP) has opened a $30 million widebody hangar at Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport, joining two others at the site. The 91,500-sq-ft building has a 115-foot ceiling and has space for a widebody and a pair of narrowbodies to be worked on simultaneously.
The supply of parts, assemblies and services for Boeing products has created valuable new economic opportunities in Southeast Asia in recent years. In fact, since 2009, Boeing suppliers have established aerospace manufacturing centers for commercial aircraft production in five Southeast Asia countries: Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore. Meanwhile, Boeing suppliers in other countries, including Australia and Malaysia, have added new commercial or defense manufacturing capacity to their portfolios.
The entire 68-strong Airbus A380 fleet must be inspected for new cracks in wing-rib feet after the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) today extended an earlier requirement limited to 20 airframes.
This month’s Singapore Airshow (February 14 to 19) is on track to surpass the previous 2010 event, with more than 900 exhibitors booked to participate from some 50 countries. What many observers will be keen to gauge is the extent to which the Asia-Pacific’s air transport and defense markets are holding up in the face of continued Western decline.
The antagonists in the long-running trade dispute over government subsidies to Boeing and Airbus are awaiting World Trade Organization (WTO) comment on the latest U.S. call for sanctions against the European Union.
Three weeks of fruitless negotiations between Qantas and three of its employee unions have forced the government’s workplace labor tribunal to arbitrate new labor agreements. The Australian flag carrier has warned that the dispute could result in a dip in its profits for the last six months of 2011 of up to 66 percent.
With engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce, Airbus is developing an enhanced A350-1000 variant with “outstanding [increased] payload and long[er] range, the best economics and 25-percent lower fuel burn and carbon dioxide emissions than [the Boeing 777-300ER].”
While Qantas participates in a series of negotiating sessions with three of its employee unions, it appears the threat of low-fare competition in the region won’t soon abate, raising tensions between the Australian flag carrier’s management and workers who fear losing their jobs to overseas “outsourcing.” The airline drew the ire of its employee groups when it announced in August plans to open a new airline based in Asia “with a new name, new aircraft and a new look and feel,” along with a new low-fare venture with Japan Airlines and Mitsubishi called Jetstar Japan.