Unionized pilots with Lufthansa-owned low-fare carrier Germanwings staged a six-hour strike on Friday after negotiations between the airline and pilots over early retirement benefits broke down. The Vereinigung Cockpit union representing pilots with Lufthansa, Lufthansa Cargo and Germanwings said it would continue planning industrial actions “until the point of agreement.”
Malaysian Airlines (MAS) is to lay off just over 30 percent of its workforce in a restructuring that will see it brought under the full ownership of state-backed sovereign wealth fund Kazanah Nasional Berhad.
Boeing won a $9.36 million contract modification from the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa) to refine its concept for a radically improved vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft to the preliminary design review stage. Three other contractors have proposed concepts for the program.
Denver-based air charter firm Mountain Aviation was acquired by an unidentified private investment group earlier this week. Rich Bjelkevig, who founded the turboprop and jet charter firm in 1993, will continue to serve as the company’s president. Cam Kenyon, previously the executive vice president of operations at WestJet Airlines and the president of Lynx Aviation in Denver, has been appointed Mountain Aviation’s executive director.
Announcing a record statutory after-tax loss of A$2.8 billion ($2.6 billion) on August 28, Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said that the Australian flag carrier has “come through the worst” as it navigates an aggressive cost-cutting program announced in February 2014.
Columbus, Ohio-based Spirit Aeronautics is introducing a new level in its AOG and on-site service capabilities. “Customers don’t always have the choice of bringing us the aircraft or have time to wait for service,” said Tony Bailey, president of Spirit Aeronautics. With that in mind, the company created its Aircraft-on-Demand Service Program to support customers who cannot move the aircraft for physical or financial reasons. “We will provide avionics, interior and maintenance service at their location, when they need it,” he added.
HungaroControl, the air navigation service provider of Hungary, said it has started a €6.8 million ($9 million) program to implement data communications between controllers and pilots. The company plans to introduce controller-pilot datalink communications (CPDLC) next February as required by Single European Sky regulation.
The FAA has granted Colorado Springs-based Trine Aerospace & Defense certification that enables it to perform maintenance, repair and overhaul services on rotary-wing aircraft.
“Trine is one of the few facilities in our region with helicopter repair station certification,” said Britt Ham, the company’s president and CEO. “The certificate enables us to serve our customers better by providing in-house repair and replacement of non-warrantied parts as well as avionics and installation repair.”
Pilatus Aircraft has signed a 10-year contract with Tata Advanced Systems (TASL) for the Indian company to supply PC-12 NG aerostructures. Tata will replace existing supplier PZL-Swidnik of Poland. This is India’s first major private partnership, and results from the 30-percent offset obligation (worth about $165 million) that Pilatus incurred in its sale of 75 PC-7 Mk II trainers to the Indian Air Force (IAF).
Launch customer Qatar Airways released photos of the first Airbus A350-900 it expects to receive this year, freshly painted at the manufacturer’s assembly plant in Toulouse, France. The airline has ordered 80 of the new widebodies: 43 A350-900s and 37 -1000s.
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