NOV. 19, 2013
Sun shines on Dubai’s aerotropolis
More dismay due to UAE fighter delays by Chris Pocock The UAE is in no immediate hurry to acquire a new fighter, although it is anxious to fully contribute to the security of the Gulf countries, according to Major General (ret.) Khaled Abdullah Al Bu-Ainnain, former commander of the UAE Air Force. Khaled told AIN here yesterday that, “it takes years to negotiate
a new fighter contract.” His comments will dampen expectations of a nearterm order or MoU for the Eurofighter Typhoon that have been raised by the British diplomatic and industrial offensive here this week. Following the flying visit by UK Prime Minister David Cameron last Saturday, defense secretary Philip Hammond and defense procurement minister Philip Dunne both visited the Dubai Air Show to bolster the Typhoon sales effort and underline the UK’s commitment to boosting defense and industrial ties both here and in the wider Gulf region. Dunne told journalists here yesterday that the UK was, “pleased to be invited to participate in the UAE competition.” But he
Continued on page 29 u
Dubai World Central’s shiny new Al Maktoum International Airport offers plenty of space for as many aircraft of all types that manufacturers and operators wanted to bring to the 2013 edition of the world-class Dubai Airshow. No doubt the next show– scheduled for November 8-12, 2015–will feature more exhibitors, more aircraft and more excitement for show attendees.
At airshow’s world central by Matt Thurber All signs now point to the fact that the Dubai Airshow is number one on the list of must-attend and must-exhibit venues on the worldwide airshow circuit. Two key indicators this year are the Dubai show’s stellar new site at Dubai World Central’s Al Maktoum International Airport and the massive orders garnered by the top two airframers–Airbus and Boeing–during this year’s show. This is likely more than just good timing, but it’s an indication of the growing importance of the biennial Dubai event.
What is clearly apparent to Dubai Airshow attendees and exhibitors this year is the vastly improved elbow space at the new Al Maktoum Airport site, for which local aviation insiders have adopted the term “aerotropolis.” Even with more than 1,000 exhibitors and 150 aircraft on static display, the thousands of show attendees had plenty of room to enjoy the sights and meet face-to-face with key partners and future colleagues. Although some local Sharqi winds
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A380 Retirement Plans
Russian Diamond To Shine
UK Launches UAS Center
Strengthening Middle East Ties
Emirates Airline, operator of the largest fleet of Airbus A380s, will have some critical decisions to make when its first A380s begin to reach their 12-year lease expiration dates. Emirates has 14 A380s on lease from Doric GmbH. Page 16
Rostec and Diamond Aircraft are collaborating on a new jet-A-powered all-composite twin-engine replacement for the An-2. The twin will come in two versions, the nine-seat LMS-9 and 19-seat LMS-19. Page 20
Sanctions against Iran make it difficult for the country’s aerospace companies to obtain approved spares and to conduct international financial transactions, but somehow Iran makes it work and its airlines keep flying. Page 23
The National Aeronautical Center for the testing of unmanned aerial systems is the first non-governmental UAS testing facility in Europe. The facility is based at West Wales Airport in Aberporth and Newquay Airport in Cornwall. Page 26
The remarkably healthy UK aerospace industry is making strong headway in the Middle East, with many UK companies supplying key portions of major aircraft development projects that are seeing strong support by Middle East buyers. Page 28
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Personal space isn’t any less personal on a twelve hour long-haul ﬂight. Yet some aircraft manufacturers are dreaming about matching our economics by reducing the width of their standard economy class seat – in many cases less than the seat width found on many commuter aircraft. This shouldn’t be the standard for personal space. Thankfully, these days you have a choice. Demand the Airbus standard for personal space. With the 18 inch standard economy class seat on the A330 and A350 XWB and the 18.5 inch economy class seat offered standard on the A380, it’ll make a massive difference. So, the next time you’re feeling squeezed on a plane, at least now you’ll know why: It’s not you, it’s the seat.
Piaggio cheers first flight of HammerHead
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Piaggio Aero and Selex ES revealed here yesterday that the first flight of the P.1HH HammerHead Demo unmanned aircraft system (UAS) technology demonstrator took place on November 14 at Trapani air force base in Italy. The demonstrator took off at 110 knots rotation speed and flew over the Mediterranean Sea for approximately 12 minutes while being remotely piloted from a ground-control station. The flight was conducted with the aircraft in midflap configuration, with landing gear extended, with it reaching an altitude of 2,000 feet and a speed of 170 knots. Piaggio Aero (Stand 1906, Static P3) unveiled the P.1HH HammerHead UAS, a derivative of its P.180 Avanti II twin turboprop, at the Paris Air Show in June. The manufacturer is developing the aircraft as a medium altitude, long endurance (MALE) UAS designed for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions. At the Dubai Airshow on Monday, Piaggio Aero presented a video of the first flight at the exhibit space it shares with Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Development Company, which owns a 41-percent interest in Piaggio. A high-level audience attended the showing, including Italian Air Force chief of staff Lieutenant General Pasquale Preziosa; Italy’s undersecretary of defense Senator Roberta Pinotti; Piaggio Aero CEO Alberto Galassi; Mubadala CEO HE Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak; and Homaid Al Shemmari, Mubadala executive director
by Bill Carey
MD Helicopters regional director Perry Orr, left, shares a moment here at the Dubai Airshow with Quest Aviation’s Mike Creed after Quest was named sales agent for the manufacturer. Pictured: An MD Explorer, the first example in the Gulf.
of aerospace, communications technology and defense services. “We achieved the first flight one week before the show and we thought it was the best place to announce it,” Galassi told AIN. “Secondly, Mubadala is a very important shareholder that we have, and without the support of Mubadala we wouldn’t be here.” Galassi said there is no current requirement by the UAE armed forces for the HammerHead UAS. “First of all we need to certify it, and the Italian Air Force will,” he said. “Then it is designed to be a NATO program and then we’ll see what other countries are interested.” The level of commitment to the program by the Italian Air Force, which is the certifying authority for the aircraft, is “very strong,” he added. The P.1HH HammerHead is powered by twin Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A66B turboprop engines. It is designed to operate to a service ceiling of 45,000 feet and stay aloft for 16 hours with a
500-pound payload, or fly to a maximum range of 4,400 nm. The vehicle control and management system (VCMS), air data terminal and ground-control segment were developed and supplied by Selex ES (Stand 1933), which also provides the mission-management system. Based on its skyISTAR system, this fuses data from on-board sensors for display to the operator. Main sensors are the Selex ES SeaSpray 7300E active electronically scanned array (AESA) surveillance radar and the FLIR Systems StarSafire 380HD electro-optic/infrared sensor. The P.1HH Demo first test flight was mainly intended to validate the aircraft’s remote VCMS. “The flight controls were very good and behaved as expected,” Antonio Maglione, Piaggio Aero chief technical officer, told AIN. “We also have to consider that we used not only direct modes but also automatic modes. Also we introduced some automatic functions– auto braking, balanced braking.” o
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Shortly before it becomes subsumed into the larger Airbus Defence and Space division, Airbus Military is showing off the A400M airlifter here at Dubai for the first time, hoping to further strengthen interest in the type from air forces in the region. The company’s A330 MRTT tanker/transport is here, too, in the shape of a UAE Air Force aircraft, while Airbus’s light/medium transport family is represented by a Royal Air Force of Oman C295. With defense budgets in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region mostly growing, led by Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Algeria, Airbus Military is forecasting strong sales for its range in the next three decades. During that time the company hopes to secure at least half of a regional market that it predicts could be around 175 light and medium transports (including 30 ISR-optimized aircraft), 130 heavy airlifters and 25 tankers. Elsewhere, Airbus Military is hopeful of concluding a deal for six A330 MRTTs with India before the end of the year. –D.D.
4 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
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Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker said yesterday that his airline had negotiated jointly with Emirates Airline on orders for Boeing’s new 777X program, launched at the Dubai Airshow, in order to exploit the “benefits of economies of scale” provided by a united front. “We are the launch customer with Emirates on this program. We are very close to Emirates viz-a-viz relationships, [especially] at the management level. These were very successful negotiations for us.” Qatar Airways signed a letter of intent for 50 777Xs with Boeing here at the airshow on Sunday. –P.S.S.
the editorial team Rick Adams Bill Carey David Donald Thierry Dubois Ian Goold Reuben Johnson Kirby J. Harrison Mark Huber
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MENA looking good for Airbus Military
Qatar Airways, Al Baker, and a United Front
Dubai Airshow News is a publication of The Convention News Co., Inc., 214 Franklin Ave., Midland Park, NJ 07432; Tel.: +1 201 444 5075. Copyright © 2013. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission of The Convention News Co., Inc. is strictly prohibited. The Convention News Co., Inc. also publishes Aviation International News, AINalerts, AIN Defense Perspective, AIN Air Transport Perspective, AINmx Reports, AINsafety, Business Jet Traveler, ABACE Convention News, EBACE Convention News, HAI Convention News, LABACE Convention News, MEBA Convention News, NBAA Convention News, Farnborough Airshow News, Paris Airshow News, Singapore Airshow News. Printed in Dubai by Emirates Printing Press Computer Services: Smart AV, Dubai.
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Bombardier, CSeries, CS100 and The Evolution of Mobility are trademark(s) of Bombardier Inc. or its subsidiaries. * 4 times quieter, 20% fuel burn advantage and 20% less CO2 emissions vs. average in-production aircraft of 110-seat & 135-seat categories @ 500 NM. The CSeries aircraft program is currently in development phase and as such is subject to changes in family strategy, branding, capacity, performance, design and / or systems. All specifications and data are approximate, may change without notice and are subject to certain operating rules, assumptions and other conditions. The actual aircraft and configuration may differ from the image shown. ÂŠ 2013 Bombardier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Middle East nations mull centralized ATM by Aimée Turner The Middle East needs to prepare to handle increased air traffic congestion over the next few years, especially in the Gulf region; however, forming a central body to coordinate the necessary changes and harmonization is proving difficult. When a WizzAir flight carrying 100 passengers from Budapest, Hungary, touched down late last month at Dubai’s new airport, it marked the first-ever commercial service at Al Maktoum International and the beginning of a new era for growth. When complete, the airport is expected to cost more than $32 billion and will have five runways capable of handling 160 million passengers annually, two thirds of whom will simply be transiting, en route to their ultimate destinations. Aviation already comprises more than a quarter of Dubai’s gross domestic product, some $22 billion a year. Much of that comes from Al Maktoum’s older sister, Dubai International
In an attempt to address this, the Middle Eastern membership of the Civil Air Navigation Service Organization (CANSO) formed a working group, which–in 2010–established the MIDRAR (Middle East Regional Airspace Review) project to offer some short-, medium- and long-term airspace improvements. Working closely with ICAO and supported by many of the region’s air navigation service providers, the International Air Transport Association and airspace users, the project used passenger and traffic growth forecasts, data from previous regional studies and national plans, and input directly from stakeholders, to identify the most pressing operational challenges that could realistically be resolved through regional cooperation. Although its geographical scope deliberately extended beyond the CANSO membership to include the FIRs (flight
With airspace constraints looming, Middle East nations are looking to regional cooperations to improve capacity and efficiency.
solutions might, on their own, not prove enough to satisfy the airspace users,” he added. Middle East airspace is becoming increasingly recognized as an important resource, especially for airlines transporting passengers and cargo to and between Africa, Europe and the Asia Pacific. The unprecedented capacity crunch threatens to restrict future growth beyond the Middle East and limit the region’s economic development. Corner said that while individual states have introduced measures to improve their own efficiency and are progressively doing more bilaterally to address specific issues –such as between
coordinate activities, integrating the master plans of individual states and identifying efficiencies and quick wins,” said Swift. While global aviation’s sovereign body, ICAO, engages with all Middle Eastern states and coordinates at policy level, an alternative forum to coordinate and support the actual implementation of regional airspace improvements emerged three years ago in the form of MEAUSE (Middle East Air Navigation Service Provider, Airspace User and Stakeholder Engagement), which CANSO hopes will become the focal point for developing solutions. Launched as a CANSO working group, MEAUSE has evolved to become a mechanism to facilitate addressing the
the UAE, Bahrain and Oman– without better cooperation and the development of a regional approach, future airspace capacity is unlikely to meet the growing demand of those airspace users. John Swift, regional managing director for UK air navigation service provider NATS, which has been operating in the Middle East for the past eight years, said the concept of a regional solution is essential. “Many of the issues being faced by Gulf Cooperation Council states cannot be completely addressed within their own borders. If one state invests heavily in new systems and training to raise the capacity of its airspace, it will not fully achieve the benefits unless enhancements are coordinated with its neighbors. “The first challenge for such a concept is for all stakeholders to acknowledge that a regional solution is required, and identify the appropriate body to
acute imbalance between traffic growth and airspace capacity. Its first tentative steps were taken to create an understanding–at the most basic level–about the need for cooperation if the region is to survive explosive traffic growth and maintain the economic benefits that aviation has brought. Much of the early focus has been on the fundamentals of “customer relationships,” signaling the realities of historically disjointed relationships between the various stakeholders. Even so, ICAO, has a potentially stronger role to play supporting developments in the region–recognized by the fact that ICAO has been commissioned to establish a Middle East airspace enhancement program that will consider the findings of the MIDRAR project along with other options, but under ICAO’s Middle East regional structure. The issue over whether national initiatives can really be
In the Middle East, airport infrastructure is keeping up with anticipated capacity growth, but airspace limitations remain a challenge to further development.
irport, which is the fourth A busiest airport in the world serving (in 2012) around 57 million passengers. However, that airport is expected to reach its full capacity of 90 million passengers by 2020, so the new airport is an attempt to retain Dubai’s edge in the market. Dubai Airports CEO Paul Griffiths, speaking at the inauguration of the new passenger terminal, said that while there are no plans to close Dubai International, the decision would be ultimately determined by airspace capacity. It is clear that this is becoming a critical factor in the region’s aviation ambitions– while the region is forecast to be one of the fastest growing in the world, and investment in airports has met the immediate demands of fast growing airlines, the capacity of its fragmented airspace has not grown at the same rate and is fast becoming a constraint to growth.
information regions) of Bahrain, Cairo, Amman, Muscat, Jeddah, Damascus, UAE and Kuwait, the exercise proved that there are no easy solutions to establishing a regional response to those airspace challenges. Each practical initiative that MIDRAR proposed would require the vital commitment of individual states supported by a regional coordinating effort. The fact is that the complexity of the airspace environment in the Middle East reflects the region’s varied geopolitical structure. Alan Corner of UK air transport consultancy Helios, which worked on the project, said that cost also emerged as an issue, especially within those states that may be asked to fund work that, while delivering benefits to the region as a whole, would not be of any use to them immediately. “And, set against the context of growing demand, these practical but fairly unambitious
8 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
implemented in parallel with the broader region’s needs was highlighted perhaps most recently by the completion of the UAE’s airspace and air traffic management system study, which was conducted jointly with Airbus ProSky in its quest to create “a sustainable aviation system.” “General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) is committed to making the difficult choices and putting forth effort to realize our ATM Strategic Plan for 2030,” said Ahmed Al Jallaf, GCAA executive director of air navigation services. “This study has produced extremely important research allowing us to be the Middle East ATM leader and set examples for other regions,” he added. While the study is crucial to ensure that the UAE’s airspace structure and the ATM system will be able to handle traffic growth, beyond the report’s 53 recommendations, the question remains: How will the UAE’s work be integrated with regional needs? Rivalries will undoubtedly persist but at least the Middle East can draw on the growing number of examples from around the world where cooperation has delivered tangible improvements to airspace efficiency and capacity. As CANSO’s Salem Al–Jahdli pointed out: “In much the same way that fragmentation forced the European region to adopt its ambitious Single European Sky initiative, the Middle East is recognizing that its own fragmentation is creating safety, efficiency and capacity challenges for the region that can be effectively tackled only through cooperation and planning.” Corner agrees. “The Middle East is different, but there is nothing to suggest that much of what is being done in other regions could not also be implemented in the Middle East. Regulators, ANSPs and airspace users now routinely engage in various regional forums, including MEAUSE, and there are a number of local initiatives…that have the potential to be expanded further.” o
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ExecuJet adding Riyadh to its area FBO network ExecuJet Middle East (Stand 2406), which opened an FBO in partnership with NasJet in Riyadh two months ago, is claiming it has brought a level of service that was previously lacking in the capital of Saudi Arabia. “We provide no additional service but it is a question of being responsive and timely and ensuring the customer experience is efficient,” ExecuJet
by Thierry Dubois team is focused on serving NasJet- and ExecuJet-managed aircraft but it is now opening to third parties. The staff of 24 may therefore increase slightly. In Dubai, ExecuJet Middle East is gearing up for the runway closures planned from May to July 2014 at Dubai International Airport (DXB). As traffic will be severely limited, the company is planning on continuing its maintenance activity here at Al Maktoum
The Skeldar integration team is seen aboard BAM Relámpago during integration trials. The UAS was deployed aboard BAM Meteoro (inset) for anti-piracy operations in September.
Saab’s Skeldar UAS joins anti-piracy effort
Here at the Dubai Airshow, ExecuJet Middle East has an impressive presence.
Saab’s Skeldar V-200 unmanned air system (UAS) has been undertaking anti-piracy patrols in the troubled waters off the Horn of Africa and southern Arabia. The rotary-wing, heavy fuel engine UAS has been flying from the Spanish navy offshore patrol vessel (OPV) BAM Meteoro, operating in concert with a manned helicopter to support the European Union’s Naval Force Somalia (also known as Operation Atalanta) anti-piracy mission. Saab (Stand 2324) earlier this year announced a contract to “deploy the Skeldar UAS for maritime operations,” but at the time did not name the customer. Spain is employing the Skeldar under a service provision
agreement with Saab. The operation is seen by the Armada Española as completing the first phase of a process to procure a UAS for shipborne use. Experience from the Skeldar deployment will feed directly into acquisition decision-making. Prior to its operational deployment, the Skeldar system underwent integration trials aboard Meteoro’s sistership, BAM Relámpago. The trials took place off the Canary Islands, and were completed in late August. The Skeldar system was then transported to Djibouti, where it embarked on the Meteoro on September 10. Meteoro is the first of a class of four modular OPVs that can
by David Donald
support helicopters of up to NH90-size. The vessel left its homeport of Las Palmas in the Canary Islands in July to begin initial operations in the internationally recommended transfer corridor in the Gulf of Aden. Operations were subsequently widened to include identification and recognition patrols along Somalia’s north and east coasts. The vessel has visited Salalah (Oman) and Fujairah (UAE) as part of the EU Naval Force’s engagement with regional states, as well as Djibouti. The vessel is due to return home in December after replacement on Atalanta duties by BAM Tornado. o
Middle East managing director Mike Berry told AIN. Passengers are a diverse mix, ranging from companies to wealthy individuals and companies, he said. Pilots benefit from their own private lounge. However, Berry and his team have limited influence on some aspects of their Riyadh operation. They are thus pushing for the passenger lounge in the central terminal to be refurbished, as it is a common area shared with other FBOs such as Arabasco and Jet Aviation. Moreover, the joint FBO with NasJet took a long time to establish (it was originally announced two years ago). ExecuJet Middle East expects to handle 3,000 aircraft in its first year in Riyadh. So far, the local
International Airport at Dubai World Central (DWC). It has secured GCAA approval for Bombardier, Embraer and Hawker jets and expects EASA approval by mid-December for the DWC facility. “In addition, we are looking at places like Sharjah and Abu Dhabi,” Berry said. In Istanbul, ExecuJet has extended its partnership with Bilen Air Service for their joint FBO at Atatürk airport. ExecuJet Middle East has recently received Turkish SHY145 and Afghanistan MoTCA AMO certification for work on Embraer Legacy aircraft and Bombardier CRJ200s. The company is now pursuing Turkish approval for the Hawker 700, 800 and 900. o
Operations at ExecuJet’s Riyadh FBO began two months ago.
Qatar’s 787 Represents a higher grade for business class “Our business class is as good as most [airlines’] first class,” said Madonna Walsh, of Qatar Airways, on board one of the airline’s Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners at the Dubai Airshow static display yesterday. Qatar has nine of the aircraft in its fleet and a further 21 on order. Walsh said the in-flight entertainment system offers 1,000 content choices, while lie-flat beds stretch to a horizontal length of 1.72 meters (5 feet 7 inches). Qatar flies the Dreamliners to Dubai, Frankfurt, Munich, Zurich, London Heathrow, Delhi and Bangalore.
10 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
by David Donald This month UTC Aerospace Systems will complete deliveries of new brakes and wheels for the U.S. Air Force’s entire Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules fleet. The brakes replace the
original equipment, offering significant performance improvements, enhanced maintainability and reduced life-cycle costs. Compared to the original steel brakes, the new brakes cool much quicker,
C-130’s cool new wheels
resulting in reduced time on the ground in “hot” landing zones. UTC’s Duracarb carbon disk technology is at the heart of the new brake. Compared to the standard steel brake, the Duracarb disk is good for 2,000 landings as opposed to 250, translating to a 10-year life with typical usage instead of 1.3 years. The wheels offer a 25,000-hour UTC Aerospace Systems’s new C-130 brake has three rotors. The number of brake pistons and actuators (six each) is half that of the standard Hercules steel wheel.
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12 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
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roll life instead of 4,200 hours. Impressive though these figures are, it is the reduction in cooling time after a heavyweight landing with anti-skid employed from 65 minutes to 15 minutes or fewer that provides the Hercules with enhanced survivability when operating into airfields that are under the threat of hostile fire. MERTO (maximum-energy rejected takeoff) tests of the standard steel brakes, conducted with a 155,000-pound load at 127 knots, resulted in potentially serious fires in the undercarriage area. However, a test conducted with the Duracarb brake resulted in nothing more than a glowing disk. Furthermore that test was conducted at a higher weight (175,000 pounds) and with a disk previously worn down so that just 10 percent of its life remained. Duracarb brakes are part of new wheels designed for the C-130 that include other advances. The brake pistons are fully sealed so that they do not leak potentially dangerous hydraulic fluid, as well as being protected against stone and dust damage. The wheel also features a simple boltless attachment that allows tires to be changed rapidly. A two-piece locking ring is quickly released to allow the tire to be removed and replaced. For a standard C-130 wheel the process takes around four hours and 15 minutes, whereas with the new system it takes just 52 minutes. Having re-equipped the U.S. Air Force fleet, UTC Aerospace Systems (Stand 1854) is in discussions with the U.S. Navy, Coast Guard and Marine Corps to retrofit their Hercules fleets, and is actively promoting the wheel in the export market. While UTC admits that the wheel is more expensive than the standard unit, it provides savings in terms of life-cycle costs in the longer term. The company has calculated that the cost differential typically evens out after five to seven years of service, after which the Duracarb brake is saving money. o
by David Donald
across much of the avionics suite. The most important difference is the addition of an air-to-air refueling capability. Block 2 will cover a further 50 aircraft and will complete the current firm orders from the PAF for 100 JF-17s. However, the eventual force requirement is considerably greater as the JF-17 replaces the F-5, F-7 and Mirage in PAF service. The factory is currently producing at a rate of 16 aircraft per year, but can increase to 25 if needed. All JF17s are assembled in Pakistan, but China retains around 40 percent of the total workshare. The JF-17 partnership is currently in the process of defining what the configuration of the Block 3 production aircraft will be, with the main aim of enhancing capability. This may include new weapons, from both Chinese and other origins, and possibly new radar and engine. The JF-17 already has the SD-10 (PL-12) active-radar air-to-air missile, and other weapons are being explored. PAC claims that integration of new weapons can be accomplished in a quick and cost-effective fashion. Chengdu has schemed a twoseat trainer version that may prove attractive to some customers.
of No. 16 ‘Black Panthers’ Squadron. PAC has sent three aircraft to the show to promote the JF-17 to potential buyers. The company suggests that there is a global requirement to replace up to 4,000 early-generation jet fighters, and it is pitching the JF-17 as a cost-effective aircraft that offers true multi-role capability. PAC reports that 11 countries are showing strong interest in the type. o
The T-50’s cockpit, as seen in the simulator here at Dubai 2013, is closely based on that of the latest F-16 versions. However, it is also applicable to training pilots of later fighters such as the F-35.
Supersonic sim eyeing area contracts Lockheed Martin has brought its T-50 Golden Eagle simulator to Dubai to continue its promotion of the supersonic advanced trainer system in the region and particularly in the UAE. The T-50 was developed in Korea by Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) working in close partnership with Lockheed Martin and is now in service with the Republic of Korea Air Force (ROKAF) in the form of the T-50 advanced trainer and TA-50 lead-in fighter/weapons trainer versions. The fully combat-capable FA-50 is due to be delivered before the end of the year to begin the replacement of the ROKAF’s Northrop F-5s. Here in the UAE an advanced trainer requirement remains to be filled. In 2009 the Alenia Aermacchi M-346 Master was announced as the winner, but no final agreement was reached and the contest was reopened. The T-50 remains in the running for that order. Other nations in the region may also look to the
T-50 to meet advanced training demands as air arms increasingly move to fourth- and fifthgeneration frontline fighters. The TA-50 and FA-50 armed derivatives are also well-placed to answer any light attack/weapons training requirements, which were certainly an element of the UAE’s original specification. For now the most immediate opportunity for the T-50 is in Poland, where the final responses to a request for proposal was due on Wednesday this week. The T-50 is competing against the BAE Systems Hawk and M-346 in Poland, where the frontline fighter is the F-16. Lockheed Martin is leveraging its local F-16 experience and infrastructure to support its proposal. A decision is due in January or February. Of course, the T-50 is also in the running for the U.S. Air Force’s T-X advanced trainer requirement to replace the Northrop T-38. The Lockheed Martin/KAI T-50 team sees a bright future
for the aircraft, citing its high performance and sophisticated systems as vital attributes as air arms change the way they accomplish training to minimize costly flight hours from operational aircraft. In very broad terms, a T-50’s running costs are around half that of an F-16. The flexibility of the T-50’s systems allows it to accomplish many training tasks using synthetic elements, such as virtual radar. The aircraft can be configured so that its systems are kept simple for initial conversion, but can increase in complexity up to the point where they mirror that of the front-line aircraft. This is an attractive attribute as modern fighters increasingly move away from having two-seat trainers for pilot conversion. The ability to train in a supersonic high-g environment, employing systems that mirror operational types, not only makes the conversion to frontline fighters that much smoother, but is also very cost-effective. –D.D.
emirates is all things great and small Parked in the shadow (literally) of a massive Airbus A380, this student-built kitplane has provided invaluable experience for a group of 40 Emirates engineering students. Constructed over a two-year period, the Vans RV-12 is composed of 11,000 parts and, along the way, the students learned about aligning control surfaces, anti-corrosive treatment, painting, drilling, wiring and, most important, the processes of testing and approval. The two-seater is scheduled to make its first flight shortly after the Dubai Airshow.n
14 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
It is understood that the project remains an engineering study only for now, and any further development would depend on a customer requirement. Pakistan has no such need for a trainer for the time being, as it has found the JF-17 to be an easy aircraft to fly with an excellent human/machine interface. The development of capable simulators means that the conversion of pilots to the type can be accomplished without the need for a two-seater, even for ab initio pilots flying the JF-17 as their first operational type. However, the future development of a two-seat combat aircraft is a possibility. Here at Dubai the JF-17 is being displayed daily by Wing Commander Ronald, commander
Next month a ceremony will be held in Pakistan to mark the delivery of the 50th JF-17 multirole fighter from the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) factory at Kamra. The handover marks the completion of production of the first batch of aircraft for the Pakistan Air Force (PAF). Designed in China by Chengdu as the FC-1, the JF-17 Thunder is being jointly developed and marketed by the Chinese and PAC. With the first batch completed, the Kamra factory is gearing up to begin Block 2 production, with a gap of a few weeks to reconfigure the assembly line to provide for the new version. Block 2 JF17s differ by between 10 and 15 percent from Block 1 machines, with improvements implemented
Thunder over Dubai: JF-17 goes to Block 2
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Emirates ponders A380 retirement plan by Peter Shaw-Smith With 36 A380 aircraft in the fleet as of late September and a further 104 on order, the aviation community is trying to calculate what will happen to Emirates’s superjumbo fleet when the time comes to retire the type, at around halfway through its lifetime. Some analysts believe that, given a lifespan of 25 years, a proxy for the useful life of a modern widebody aircraft, the A380 will face problems in the secondary market when major leases come to an end after the standard 12-year term. In an interview ahead of the Dubai Airshow, Emirates president Tim Clark told AIN that he expects the carrier will take delivery by the end of the year of almost half of the 90 A380s it has ordered. “Seven more A380s being delivered between [late September] and December 21. That will take us to 43,” he said. Clark said no A380 in the fleet would be retired in less than 12 years. In the case of Germany’s Doric GmbH, lessor of 14 A380s to Emirates (as well as five to Singapore International Airlines), he said the lease term is the longest of any aircraft that Emirates operates. “After 12 years, the arrangement we have with Doric falls away and the aircraft will be returned to them. That’s the deal we have with [A380 lessors]. Our first lease [with Doric]…was in July 2008 [for retirement] in July 2020.” Low Average Age
Emirates has a reputation for having one of the lowest average-age fleets in the business, thought today to be around six years. “The [average fleet] age hovers around that. [The long A380 lease-span is] more driven by the terms on which the lessor was prepared to do the deal. It [wouldn’t] do it for less than 12 years. If you have windows that come in before then, it becomes very expensive to break out. Twelve years suits us. [Then, reallocating the aircraft] is their problem.”
“Emirates’s average fleet age today is 6.1 years,” said Rogério Leão, Emirates manager, route planning and analysis. “Current fleet projections indicate that the EK fleet average age should remain stable between six and seven years old between now and 2017, as a result of the net effect of retirements and the stream of new aircraft inductions.” In any event, it doesn’t appear likely there will be enough A380s in the fleet to dent Emirates’s record low average fleet age. “That depends on the rest of the fleet,” said Clark. “We have [B777-300]ERs coming until 2018, and A380s coming through until 2017. By 2020 we start retiring the old ones and we’ve got a bunch of new ones,
more than 200 aircraft at the time of Dubai Airshow 2013. “On 17 November we [will] have [a total of] 206-207 [aircraft].” Aviation analyst Richard Aboulafia of Teal Group, based in Fairfax, Virginia, is one of those who believe that the completion of 12-year leases on the A380 will then pose problems for their owners, when the time comes for the aircraft to find new homes. He wonders whether lessors like Doric have bitten off more than they can chew with the aircraft. The lack of operating lessors is an indication of a weak-tononexistent secondary market, he thinks. “They might retire them after 12 years in service. It raises one question: who takes responsibility for marketing the plane? There is no secondary mar-
By year-end, Emirates is to have taken delivery of 43 A380s of an order for 140, and by 2020 will have to begin considering retiring some of them.
advantage of stopping gets eroded.” If Gulf airlines go all out for the A380, he thinks they might be caught out. “Three things could derail the Gulf carriers: trade action–there’s no hope of that at all; political instability–probably not, but you never know; or the advent of more economic, very long-range aircraft,” he said. On the lessor side, he zeroes in on Doric. Its website claims to have 36 aircraft out on lease, 14 of them A380-800s to Emirates. “They don’t have much experience in this industry. There is a risk, not necessarily from Emirates, that everything could go horribly wrong. What do you do after they come off lease? There is no reason these aircraft shouldn’t last 25 years like any other widebody. This is wide open here. They could survive as Hajj carriers. The residual value is the same as the 747-400 [though].” Aboulafia puts the A380’s list price at $330 million. Straight-line depreciation would put the aircraft’s value at $172 million after 12 years. If Emirates were to then retire all its A380s, this would leave Doric with a rolling $3.5 billion of metal looking for an uncertain home. That would leave another 22 in-fleet planes today to be retired and accounted for, plus those from the airline’s recent orderfor 50 more A380s. Doric’s View
so the average is coming down. We’ve got A350s, we’ve got the 777X coming...but [as to] the fleet age, bear in mind that by that time, we will have rid ourselves of 64 of the old aircraft. If you’ve got A380s coming, you push the average age up, but then you’ve got a far greater number pushing the average age down.” Clark is coy about what the state of the industry will be in 2020, and how A380 lessors will fare when aircraft are returned to them. “Much will depend on what the market’s doing at that particularly time. We’re still seven years out. We need to know what will happen. It’s a difficult one,” said Clark. He said he expected the fleet to number
PK warns that rate rises could change market With major OEMs never busier, finance experts are warning of the dangers of a rise in interest rates. Airbus figures published in September, the month it exceeded its 2013 sales target, reveal it has an order backlog of 5,300 aircraft, or almost eight years of production. Boeing’s Current Market Outlook 2013-32 forecasts RPK (revenue passenger kilometer) growth at 5.0 percent, with 35,380 new airplanes to be built for growth and fleet replacement. But aircraft operators would do well to beware of today’s financing environment, which will not be benign forever. “It is a very difficult market right now. The cycle is different from previous ones in that we have both ample ‘metal’ supply and money supply. It’s hard to say how it will pan out,” said Nils Hallerstrom, president of Luxembourg-based PK AirFinance, a unit of GE Capital Aviation Services (Gecas). “Low interest rates mean new and efficient aircraft are favored over older and less efficient aircraft. Rising interest rates may turn this around. A new aircraft is not a safe haven.” PK was founded in 1988 by French bank Credit Lyonnais and sold to Gecas in 2000. It finances aircraft for airlines and lessors and owns a $7 billion portfolio, along with 540 mortgaged aircraft, Hallerstrom said. He warned that widebody aircraft owners and lessors could face particular challenges when they seek to place metal at the end of contracts out to new operators. Hallerstrom is hard-pressed to estimate the percentage of the global fleet which is leased. “[I think] it’s around 40 percent–but I don’t know if it is tail count or value,” he said. “[That share] may well increase. Operating leasing is obviously attractive for the airline when the market turns down, as it is attractive for the lessor when the market turns up. The key is to spread the ownership risk.” –P.S.S.
16 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
ket. What do you do with a retired A380? Who takes responsibility for used industry behemoths? It is very unlikely [Emirates] will have a fleet of 90 A380s at any given moment,” he said. “I am not so sure there’s much of a market for this plane. There is very little data for the in-service specific aircraft type. There are a couple of issues. One, there is absolutely no operating lessor that ordered this plane [and two] it is not suitable for cargo conversion. “Everyone involved has said that this is a long-range plane, restricted to longhaul carriers who don’t care about operating new aircraft; that’s a small number. The market is intra-Asia, Africa, Europe and transatlantic. The A380 makes sense only for very long ranges, to premium carriers that want a new jet. The only [second hand-market] fit is Delta in the U.S., which has shown no interest.” Aboulafia’s analysis makes the point that little traffic through Dubai is origin and destination (O&D). Some 70 percent of Dubai International passengers transit to a different type. “Their percentage of transit passengers is way, way up. It’s not O&D traffic. They have recognized the problem by targeting 20 million tourists in Dubai by 2020. Can you do that? What can you really do to grow? Baseball has a history of build it and they will come [but] history has proved that doesn’t always work. “On the point-to-point travel that passes by these hubs: I’m not stopping in Dubai. I am London to take-your-pick, say Perth. I am not stopping in Dubai. In terms of economics, a lot of gas weighs a lot. What if the next generation of longrange planes–the A350 or the 777X–are really good at this? What if they are really good at doing 8,000 nautical miles? The
Dr. Peter Hein, Doric’s managing director, admits the lessor’s A380 program faces “hard questions,” but expresses satisfaction with the aircraft to date. “With respect to our Airbus A380s under management, we only have excellent experience,” he said, before explaining the mechanics of his business. “Over the 12-year lease, the debt is fully amortized and the investors [get] more than 100 percent of the equity investment in distributions. The relevant amounts to pay debt service plus distributions result from the contractual monthly lease rents. At Year 12, investors have a positive return already, plus an unencumbered airplane with four engines. “Investors do not assume that the airplane including the four engines will be scrapped, but will create further income. [This] can result from re-leasing to the existing lessees for a couple of years; shorter term leases to other parties; sale of the aircraft; [or] scrapping. We also act as remarketing agent for third parties and have some recent experience there.” Hein admits that it is still early days to assess the A380’s future. “I think we cannot say much at this point in time. The aircraft is still in its infancy,” he said. He expects more lessors to enter the market and, to underline his optimism, cites data from a presentation by John Leahy, Airbus chief commercial officer for customers, showing the A380 outselling the Boeing 747-8 eight to one. “The broader the market becomes, the more lessors will enter the market. For sure there is substantial potential for the type.” He is not losing any sleep: “There is not much to be said at this point in time other than pure speculation. The first aircraft will only come back to the market in more than six years.” o
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Middle East market vital to AgustaWestland by Paolo Valpolini “The Middle East remains a very important market for AgustaWestland,” said CEO Daniele Romiti on the eve of this year’s Dubai Airshow. “It is a challenging market, where personal relationships have a great importance,” he added. For both civil and military segments, the key location for AgustaWestland in this region is Abu Dhabi, where the helicopter manufacturer established AgustaWestland Aviation Services in late 2011. The company is a joint venture with Abu Dhabi Aviation in which the local company holds a 70 percent stake while AgustaWestland holds the remaining 30 percent. Services include the sale of helicopter spare parts and accessories, helicopter and component repair and overhaul, customization, modification and upgrades. AgustaWestland has lowered its AOG case closure time by 10 percent in the past 12 months. While the cases were closed under the 24-hour limit,
the company is working towards a target of 12 hours. AgustaWestland’s new motto is “Think Customer,” and the company said that aftersales support is one of its key goals for achieving optimal customer satisfaction. Training is also of key importance, and AgustaWestland has partnered with Abu Dhabi Aviation and Mubadala to provide training services in the UAE. A CAE 3000 AW139 Level D full flight simulator will be available in the coming months. Meanwhile in Qatar, Gulf Helicopter is now an AgustaWestland authorized training center. Delivery of an AW139 Level B full flight simulator is expected soon, reflecting the high level of sales of the AW139 in the area. Here at the Dubai Airshow AgustaWestland is displaying mock-ups of its AW189 and AW169 helicopters. The AW189 fits the needs of oil and gas companies that need a helicopter capable of carrying a large
osprey over dubai The Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey tiltrotor is seen flying over Dubai with the sail-shaped Burj Al Arab hotel, known as the symbol of modern Dubai, in the background. A trio of V-22s is on display here at the Dubai Airshow.
number of passengers and flying to many rigs before returning back to base. Four AW189 prototypes and two pre-production versions plus the first production helicopter are flying in Italy. AW189 certification is imminent with deliveries expected to begin by the end of this year. The eight-ton helicopter has already garnered more than 80 orders, most of them from the oil and gas sector, with more than a quarter ordered by Middle East operators. As for the AW169, AgustaWestland considers that in the Middle East this machine is a perfect complement to the Grand/GrandNew in the VIP helicopter category. Certification should be obtained in mid-2014, and more than 100 AW169s have been ordered globally. The militarized version, the AW169M, could be the answer to a range of light military applications to replace aging singles and twins. The military AW149, also an eight-ton helicoper, should also be certified in 2014. Looking at higher weights, the three-engine AW101 is becoming popular in the VVIP market, and the Middle East is one of the areas with great potential for the AW101, believes the company. Tiltrotor Progress
AgustaWestland will install an AW139 simulator in cooperation with Abu Dhabi Aviation as part of the manufacturer’s commitment to customer service in the region.
The AW609 tiltrotor is progressing, with certification forecast in 2017, followed by entry into service in 2018. The AW609 was developed in a venture with Bell Helicopter but is now fully in the hands of AgustaWestland. The latest configuration was flown a few
18 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
days before the Dubai Airshow at AgustaWestland’s plant in Vergiate, Italy, in front of a delegation that seemed impressed by the AW609’s capabilities. Its capacity to fly at twice the speed, twice the height and twice the range of a standard helicopter puts it in a unique category, and this should be a strong selling point for VVIP/corporate transport in the Middle East. Certifying this new type of rotorcraft is particularly challenging and new requirements are being drafted to complement FAA Part 27 and Part 29 regulations. This will also need to be done for pilot certification. “We currently have two prototypes flying, number one in Texas to cope with FAA certification and number two in Cascina Costa,” said AW609 program manager Clive Scott. Components for aircraft number three at the Cascina Costa experimental hangar were slated to be moved to Vergiate, in line with the company philosophy of assembling final prototypes in the production facility to ease the transition to production. AW609 No. 3 will be used for icing trials and will fly in July 2014. No. 4 will be the production representative prototype and will be equipped with production avionics and should fly in 2015. Over the past two years the AW609 prototypes logged more 300 flight hours, which brought the total to some 870 hours. AgustaWestland intends to complete flight testing by the end of 2013; about 30 to 40 hours still need to be flown. Remaining tests that the U.S.based prototype will fly include autorotation trials.
After taking over the program, AgustaWestland engineers made some key modifications to the AW609 design. “The vertical fin has a reduced chord,” said AgustaWestland chief project engineer Silvano Scorbati, “while the engine exhausts were extended to modify the flow, and vortex generators were installed to reduce stall speed.” The current configuration delivers 10 percent less drag while structural weight was decreased by nearly 250 kilograms (550 pounds). The most significant change to the AW609 is the adoption of the new Rockwell Collins Fusion touch-screen flight deck, which adds commonality with other helicopters in the AgustaWestland family. “Operationally speaking,” said program manager Scott, “we do not consider the AW609 in competition with helicopters but rather a turboprop that does not need to operate from airfields.” The AW609’s maximum takeoff weight (mtow) is rated at 7,620 kilograms (16,800 pounds) in vertical mode, but in extremeshort takeoff mode the mtow can increase to 8,164 kilograms (18,000 pounds) with a takeoff speed of 40 knots. The AW609 carries nine passengers plus a crew of two in the standard configuration, or six passengers in the corporate version. For air-ambulance operations, two stretchers can be carried. Currently AgustaWestland has more than 50 purchase agreements for VIP, offshore, corporate and government configurations of the AW609 tiltrotor. o
Russian Diamond twin may replace the An-2 by Vladimir Karnozov Having teamed up earlier this year on a project to conceive lightweight multipurpose airplanes for passenger transportation, Russian and Austrian designers have recently revealed the first models of what they envision as low-cost nine- and 19-seat aircraft powered by two diesel engines. Rostec (the Russian Technologies state corporation) and Diamond Aircraft signed the agreement at the Paris Air Show in June, although at the time very little was said about the airplane itself. Two months later, when opening MAKS 2013 in Moscow, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev mentioned the project in his speech. “The use of new composite materials is centerpiece of the Russo-Austrian program on development of multi-role airplanes,” he remarked. At the same show, Rostec (Stand 669) displayed two scale models. Referred to as the LMS9 and LMS-19 (the Russian acronym suggesting “Lightweight multifunctional airplanes with nine and 19 seats”), these share common wing, nose and tail sections, while differing in fuselage length by the addition of plugs on the higher capacity model. Initiators and participants in the LMS-9/19 effort are Rostec, UZGA (the Urals Plant of Civil Aviation), Diamond Aircraft, RT-Khimkomposit
(Chem ical Composites) and TsAGI (the Central Aerohydrodynamics Institute). The 19-seater has a large door on the port side near the tail; its exterior resembles the Dornier 228. The new aircraft concept is based on the use of modern composite technologies in airframe manufacturing; a high degree of unification between the 19- and nine-seaters on components, subassemblies and onboard systems; and next-generation, highly fuel-efficient diesel engines. The airplanes must have low acquisition costs, which the Austro-Russian team estimates at 120 million roubles ($3.73 million) for the 19-seater and 80 million roubles ($2.48 million) for the nine-seater. Both should be able to operate in harsh climatic environments and use unpaved (soil/grass) runways in areas having limited ground infrastructure in Siberia, the Arctic and Antarctic. Versatile Landing Gear
The airplanes should be easy to maintain and have low lifecycle costs. Low-pressure pneumatics should facilitate operations from grass runways. Provision will be made for use of ski landing gear or ski/wheel combinations, or floats for operations from water. Certification trials are due to be completed in late 2016. In a brief interview with
AIN at the Paris Air Show, Diamond Aircraft CEO Christian Dries confirmed that his company is ready to expand cooperation with the Russians. “We are jointly developing future products with a considerable number of Russian engineers involved in the process. The work is active on both sides and involves some Russian specialists working with us in our locations and vice versa.” Touching on the proposed schedule, Dries said it would be two years before first flight is possible, followed by another two years to market entry. “These airplanes shall have turbocharged diesel engines that are able to use jet A-1,” he added. AIN spoke with Boris Aleshin, formerly Russia’s vice president (2003-2004) and now director of TsAGI. “Along with other Russian scientific and research establishments, TsAGI is taking part in this effort. We are responsible for a good portion of R&D work,” he said. The key thing is the new technologies that will enable cost-effective mass production of an airframe made of composite materials, he added. “Today, TsAGI is the frontrunner in the sphere of critical technological solutions applicable to composite structures. This mainly applies to the infusion methods of baking such structures without the need for large autoclaves. We have amassed considerable experience in this field through the work done on the MC-21 next-generation narrowbody jet. We have been responsible for testing of all the wing boxes made so far,” he said. “The infusion technologies are the main driver behind
To create a modern, twin-diesel-powered, composite replacement for Antonov An-2s Russia has enlisted the help of Diamond Aircraft, which is collaborating with the Urals Civil Aviation Plant to design a 19-seat transport resembling the Dornier Do 228.
An agreement between Diamond and Rostec, the Russian Technologies state corporation, calls for license production of the four-seat DA40 and DA42. Vadim Badekha, general manager, Urals Civil Aviation Plant (UZGA) with Christian Dries, Diamond Aircraft Industries president and CEO (left), and a model of the DA42.
the Rostec-Diamond aircraft project. These aircraft shall have most of their advantages [over existing aircraft] through the extensive use of these new technological solutions. It shall allow manufacture of monocoque structures with builtin force-bearing elements, all made of composites with a substantial cost reduction in the case of a relatively large production run.” Alexei Fedorov, formerly president of United Aircraft and now executive director for aviation programs at Rostec, said Russia needs a replacement to
the long-serving Antonov An-2, which was invented in 1946 and hundreds of which are still flying. “There are some people who want to give the An-2 a new lease on life through engine replacement. We think differently and believe that an all-new commuter airplane should be developed from scratch. It would use new, progressive technologies, with a wide application of composite materials and advanced powerplants. For the sake of making it, we have teamed up with Diamond Aircraft. Our common goal is to create a unified family of such aircraft.” o
Although it made its debut at the IDEX show earlier this year, the Aerostat-200 from Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments (Adasi) is being shown in its full inflated glory for the first time in public at the Dubai Airshow. The 200-cubic meter aerostat, which began operations this year, can carry a payload such as an EO/IR sensor up to more than 500 feet to provide non-stop surveillance. Adasi will soon introduce the more voluminous Aerostat-500, followed by the even larger Aerostat-900 with a 3,500-foot altitude capability. –D.D.
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Persistent overview from on high
z Ameco Beijing to Expand in Bizjet Completions
For VVIP service, Emirates Executive offers this Airbus Corporate Jet (ACJ) version of the A319. Airbus’s corporate jet division also touts the ACJ318 operated by Constellation Aviation Services, featuring a private office/bedroom with its own private bath.
Airbus displaying a pair of specialty ACJs here by Gregory Polek Airbus is highlighting two corporate jets, an ACJ318 and an ACJ319, in this year’s Dubai Airshow static display. Constellation Aviation Services operates the Airbus ACJ318, which features lounge areas at the front, plus a private office/bedroom with en-suite bathroom at the rear. Emirates Executive began offering VVIP charters earlier this year with the Airbus ACJ319, featuring private suites, lounge areas and a bathroom with a shower. “Airbus corporate jets have the widest and tallest cabin of
any business jet, without needing more ramp space, allowing customers to take more of their lifestyle with them when they travel,” said John Leahy, Airbus COO for customers. Airbus corporate jets historically have projected a strong presence in the Middle East, where both ACJ320 family airplanes and the larger, VVIP widebody category jets predominate. The Middle East ranks as the largest market for VVIP widebodies, and Airbus produced its first corporate jet in
the mid-1980s for a customer from this region. Today, Airbus offers a “Gala” cabin concept for widebodies such as the ACJ330/ ACJ340, which combines a VIP section with airliner-style seating to simplify and shorten outfitting. According to Airbus, its business jets’ ability to carry larger groups, such as extended families and government delegations, stand as particularly attractive features. Airbus also promotes the robust reliability that it attributes to the design’s airliner heritage and the ready availability of spares, support and training resulting from the airplanes’ widespread global presence. Airbus corporate jets fly on every continent, including Antarctica, and have won more than 170 sales. o
Ameco Beijing wants to increase its third-party workload for commercial aircraft maintenance and modifications and simultaneously expand into VIP and business jet completions, it announced here at the Dubai Air Show. This month, Ameco Beijing (Stand 2233) completed a modification on an Airbus for a Middle East carrier. The Ameco Air China-Lufthansa joint venture is at the show promoting its MRO services, especially airframe and engine overhaul. Thirdparty airframe overhaul revenues increased by an average 20 percent during the past five years. Between 2008 and 2012, the company expanded buildings, hangars and other infrastructure. Ameco Beijing offers its services on the entire Airbus and Boeing in-production aircraft, except the Boeing 787. In engines, it is approved for the Rolls-Royce RB211-535 E4 and the Pratt & Whitney PW4000-94. It opened a line maintenance outstation in Chengdu–the seventh in China–in September. Ameco is now striving to add luxury jet completion to its portfolio of capabilities. “We have our own designers, engineers and interior manufacture shop; it is no problem for us to get the
CAAC modification design approval; in addition, we are developing capabilities for EASA supplemental type certificates,” said head of VIP and business jet services Feng Bin. Ameco Beijing will first explore the Chinese completion market, while paying attention to the Middle East. For the latter market, Feng said, “we can expand our maintenance services to VIP and business jets to understand the demand of customers in this area.”
z A380 Door Training Device Made Here in UAE
Gulf Helicopters orders 15 AW189s AgustaWestland (Chalet P22) received an order for 15 of its new AW189 helicopters from Gulf Helicopters of Qatar here at the Dubai Airshow yesterday. The first two aircraft are due to be delivered in 2014 and all aircraft should achieve operational readiness in 2017. Gulf Helicopters is already an operator of AW139s. Mohamed Al Mohannadi, CEO of Gulf Helicopters, said, “The experience of operating, maintaining and managing the AW139 in the Middle East, Africa, South Asia and Europe over six years with 15 units in our fleets has helped [us] in taking the decision to purchase the AW189 eight-ton class.” He emphasised the longer range and “perfect size” of the AW189. First deliveries of the new type are due to begin later this year. Mohannadi is pictured with AgustaWestland CEO Daniele Romiti. Meanwhile another AW139 operator, Dubai Airwing, has ordered one AW189 for VIP transport, and the Dubai Police is to operate five AW169s for law enforcement, emergency medical services and as VIP transports. Both contracts were announced here at the Dubai Airshow yesterday. –I.S.
Being displayed here at the Dubai airshow is the first A380 door training device to be manufactured outside Europe. Constructed from advanced composites with carbon fiber reinforcement, the door trainer was built by Spatial Composite Solutions (Stand 2612) at its factory in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE. It was manufactured under license from Airbus. “We believe the A380 door trainer to be one of the most sophisticated Airbus training devices in the world, which was built in its entirety at our manufacturing facility here in the Emirates,” said Spatial CEO Joseph McKeever. “Downloading the design data from Airbus was a seamless operation, very straightforward and simple to control.” Advanced features of the door include visual simulation of fire, smoke and water hazards. Trainers are provided with an instructor’s operating station (IOS) that allows them to operate the system via a touch-screen computer or a portable tablet device. Spatial Composite Solutions manufactures advanced crew training equipment for the civil aviation industry, including full-scale replicas of Airbus and Boeing interiors for realistic cabin crew inflight safety and service training. The company boasts advanced 3-D design and engineering capabilities, with a five-axis CNC manufacturing capability that allows parts to be manufactured to aerospace tolerances. Among the company’s customers are Air Arabia, CAE, Emirates, Etihad, FlyDubai and Virgin America.
www.ainonline.com • November 19, 2013 • Dubai Airshow News 21
z Lufthansa Technik Offers Next-gen Stretcher Lufthansa Technik is developing a next-generation patient transport unit with accompanying oxygen supply and medical equipment interface, it announced at the Dubai Airshow. The company is also touting its “floor panel hard-points,” designed to enable heavy VIP cabin interiors in carbon-fiber fuselages. The litter was developed with Aerolite Max Bucher for intensive care treatment. It features an internal oxygen supply system with a breathing capability of 13,000 liters, a universal power supply for medical equipment and a control panel. Users can customize it thanks to drawers, racks and attachment rails for additional devices such as monitoring units or a defibrillator. Lufthansa Technik Lufthansa Technik is offering a new(Stand 1945) claims the generation stretcher with accompanying new patient transport unit oxygen supply. will be quicker to install, more robust, lighter and more comfortable for the patient. The medical crew should find it convenient to work with, too, as its dimensions are 6.5 feet long, 2.6 feet high and 2.1 feet wide. Lufthansa Technik also highlighted the quick-release system for easier installation and configuration changes. Lufthansa Technik has received one order from a commercial carrier and is in discussions with an undisclosed VIP customer for another two units. Fifty examples of the previous-generation stretcher have been sold.
z SR Technics Redelivers 100th Aircraft SR Technics (Stand 1906) has redelivered its 100th aircraft, an Airbus A319 belonging to easyJet, from its Malta MRO facility. The aircraft departed from Malta International Airport last week for London Gatwick after undergoing an immediate layover check (heavy maintenance). SR Technics started operations in Malta in 2010, and easyJet has been the facility’s main customer, along with Finnair, Portugal’s Orbest and France’s Aigle Azur. Together with Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies, SR Technics, which is 100 percent owned by Mubadala Aerospace, forms the Mubadala MRO network. In February, Russia’s Aeroflot launched an MRO joint venture with state corporation Rostech and SR Technics. “This is a milestone for our Malta team, most of whom were working for SR Technics when the first aircraft, easyJet’s ‘Pride of Malta,’ was redelivered on October 21, 2010,” said SR Technics president André Wall. Redelivery is the term used to refer to aircraft delivered back to an operator after modifications, with the aircraft coming from a former operator or direct from the manufacturer.
Embraer’s Lineage gets a makeover by Kirby J. Harrison With the number of Lineage 1000s already in service worldwide approaching a dozen, and more than a few in the Middle East region, Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer is at the Dubai Airshow with its new Lineage 1000E, an airplane that features a serious makeover from nose to tail. For business and private aviation travelers in this area, range is always a consideration and it likewise became a major consideration with the Lineage redux. After reducing the weight by 500 pounds, the ultra-large executive variant of the E190 airliner now has a range increase from 4,400 nm to 4,600 nm, putting within reach city pair nonstop connections that were once considered marginal. The Lineage 1000E can easily fly nonstop from Dubai to London or Tokyo, and from New York to Los Angles. “We found a lot of opportunities to save weight,” said Augusto Salgado da Rocha, manager of product strategy. “Every single piece of the interior had a design target theoretically calculated before the piece was complete, and every single piece was controlled very strictly to make sure we would get to our design target.” Further weight savings came in a redesign of the forward fuselage, removing an unused door and 12 to 13 unused “mirage” windows previously hidden behind cabinetry, as well as optimization of fuselage supports.
Embraer’s Lineage 1000 was already impressive, but the newest version is even better. The 1000E has more range and added cabin amenties, as well as improved avionics.
Even wiring harnesses and routing were redesigned. New Cockpit Features
Cockpit options now include auto-land, a combined head-up display and an enhanced-vision system with an infrared camera installed in the aircraft’s nose. The Lineage is already certified for operations at London City Airport, giving passengers quick access to central London. The cabin management system was upgraded to the Ovation Select digital system from Honeywell. A fully integrated media center concentrates multi-media devices and video inputs, such as Blu-ray players, iPod docks and HDMI or USB ports. The system delivers high-definition video and 5.1 surround sound on larger and slimmer monitors. The Apple TV device is “easily integrated,” allowing passengers to stream iPad content to other iOS devices and to the onboard entertainment system. The system will also hold other streaming boxes, including those that are Android-based. “It brings to the airplane the same convenience and functionality of the home entertainment experience,” the company says. High-speed Internet connectivity is via Inmarsat and voice
z Global Aerospace Summit Announces Speakers The Global Aerospace Summit, an Abu Dhabi-based aviation event that will take place for the second time in April, has announced speakers to take part on the first day of the summit. Hosted by Mubadala Development and organised by Streamline Marketing Group, the event will see James Hogan, president and CEO of Etihad Airways, Marillyn Hewson, president and CEO of Lockheed Martin and Tony Douglas, CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports, as opening speakers on April 7, 2014. The conference runs for two days through April 8. Mr. Hogan will address the topic of partnerships and collaboration as Etihad extends its business model of minority equity investments in airlines around the world. The inaugural event attracted 900 visitors from 52 countries in 2012. The summit team will be at Mubadala’s stand (1906) at the Dubai Airshow.
The enhanced cabin of the “ultra-large” Lineage 1000E is designed with five zones, among them a forward dining area, above, and an aft zone that can be converted for use as a private stateroom.
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via Iridium. Honeywell’s highspeed data package is an option allowing data and voice service through the Inmarsat satellite network with speeds up to 864 kbps. Wireless handsets are also available for voice communication. Other enhancements include new seats, electric pocket doors (three separating the five cabin zones), refreshed galley and cabinetry design and automatic tables. Reconfigurable furniture features adjustable shelves and PC power outlets and pleated window shades are electrically operated. The standard galley appliances now include microwave, convection oven, coffee maker, ice drawer, two counter tops and increased storage space. The cabin environment is also quieter, thanks to improvements in the acoustics package from 3M. Changes included more efficient and balanced airflow, more effective damping materials and “optimized distribution” of thermal acoustic insulation in the cabin. Embraer claims the cabin noise has been reduced by about one third, or 2 dB (SIL), depending on the choice of materials, cabin layout and location within the cabin at which the readings were taken. The modular five-zone cabin, says Embraer, “provides the highest flexibility among interiors assembled by any OEM.” Within the zones, customers may have up to three lavatories, a shower, a safe, a bar, side-facing semi-private office, stone floors and stone galley countertops. The modular interior, according to the company, provides for “hundreds of cabin layout possibilities.” Among upgrades still be evaluated are the integration of audio/visual on-demand (AVoD) entertainment and a system to increase the cabin humidity. According to Salgado da Rocha, even with all the changes, the designers and engineers of the Lineage 1000E makeover managed to retain the open, spacious feel of the cabin. o
AeroEx lends a hand with TCO compliance by Thierry Dubois Switzerland-based AeroEx (Stand 3260), a firm that specializes in supporting operators for their back-office safety tasks, is offering help for compliance with the new Third Country Operators (TCO) rules (the so called “Part-TCO”) that will soon be enforced by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), subject to approval by the European Parliament and Council. If all goes to plan, from spring next year the new EASA rules will require all commercial TCOs to apply for authorization when flying into, within and/or out of the 32 EASA member states (EU member states plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland). The rules will also apply to other territories to which EC Basic Regulation 216/2008 applies (Gibraltar, the Azores, the Åland Islands, Madeira, the Canary
Islands, Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Réunion, SaintMartin and Mayotte). The idea is to harmonize and streamline the authorization process–TCOs currently have to apply to the national authority of the first European country they were flying to (they are not required for overflying). The advantage, according to EASA, is that once an authorization is acquired from one country in the group, it will be valid for all. Limited On-site Audits
The standard authorization process will validate the operator’s certificate, as granted by its own national authority, usually with only a desktop review. Onsite audits will only apply when the operator is deemed “critical” (such as being on the EU Safety List, or “Black List”) or after
Iran uses work-arounds to counter sanctions by Mark Huber
arrow-batics suspension of a TCO authorization. EASA and its member states will conduct inspections, exchange safety information and periodically review the authorization. A list of TCOs will be available on the Internet, said EASA, which says that applicants will need to apply for TCO authorization at least 30 days before the planned operation to Europe (a separate process is being developed for charter operators). Operators who fail to apply within six months after the regulation becomes effective may face delays in the authorization process, which could lead to a disruption of their operations, AeroEx warned. One-time ad-hoc authorizations are only envisaged for humanitarian, emergency or urgent flights. AeroEx therefore recommends that TCOs apply as soon as possible. o
licenses for additional designs, including the Chinese Comac C919 and the Russian Irkut MC-21. The first flight of an indigenous narrowbody could come as early as 2017. Evasion Strategies
Any potential thaw in U.S.Iran relations is unlikely to relax long-standing economic sanctions that have hobbled the latter’s commercial and defense aviation sectors for decades. Most recently, United Nations Resolution 1696, in force since 2006 in response to Iran’s nuclear ambitions, has limited Iran’s ability to obtain approved spare and replacement aircraft components and to conduct international financial transactions. Sanctions against Iran have also been imposed by the European Union and bilaterally by individual countries including the U.S. Even countries without a formal Iranian sanctions policy have honored sanctions imposed by other nations. U.S. sanctions prohibit exporting almost all goods and services, including U.S.-produced aircraft and components to Iran, and American citizens are barred from facilitating any prohibited transaction with Iran, regardless of country of origin or transit. The impact of sanctions on Iran’s aerospace sector has been particularly severe: Iranian
airlines operate one of the oldest commercial fleets in the world– with an average aircraft age of 22 years–and it was the last country with an airline with regularly scheduled Boeing 707 service. According to the country’s airline officials, at any given time 60 percent of the commercial fleet is out of service due to the maintenance issues. A rash of crashes over the past decade have killed more than 1,200, several of them blamed on maintenance-related causes. Iran’s current commercial fleet consists largely of ancient Boeing and Airbus aircraft– 747SPs, 727s and A300s. The country also manufactures the Russian An-140 turboprop under license and until recently operated Tu-154 aircraft. Iran has set an ambitious goal of more than doubling the size of its commercial aircraft fleet to 550 by 2025 and quintupling its export of aerospace parts to $500 million by 2017. Last month government officials said there were plans to develop indigenously manufactured narrowbody and widebody jets as well as gaining manufacturing
For now, Iran appears to be using a trio of strategies to circumvent sanctions relating to aerospace: smuggling, counterfeiting and indigenous production. Smuggling takes the form of outright violation of sanctions of use of third-party intermediaries as workarounds. Some of the schemes are very sophisticated and employ an international web of holding companies and middlemen who are able to obtain very high-profile items–so far this year Iran claims to have added 22 Airbuses to its commercial fleet, including a pair of A321s. An Airbus A310-304, once used by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, ended up in the fleet of Iranian airline Mahan after the German government sold it for 3.1 million euros to a Ukranian investor through a shell corporation in Gibraltar, transferred to a buyer in Kiev and then resold into Iran. However, not all such attempts are so elaborate and not all of them succeed. Some of the more recent documentedcases involving smuggling aerospace components and aircraft to Iran include:
The UK Royal Air Force Red Arrows jet demonstration team carves up the skies above Al Maktoum International Airport during the flying displays.
• In October, an American Airlines mechanic from Texas, Diocenyr Ribamar BarbosaSantos, was sentenced to two years in prison for trying to broker a deal, using Swiss and Chinese intermediaries, for the sale to Iran Air of seven used Airbus A300s and a C130 cargo airplane worth $136.5 million. • In March, Reza Olangian, an American citizen, was extradited from Estonia to the U.S. on charges of attempting to acquire and transfer anti-aircraft missiles and Bell 412 helicopters to Iran. • In December 2012, two German nationals were charged with attempting to smuggle 61 engines into Iran for its fleet of Ababil III military attack drones. • Also in 2012, Alfredo Guerrero Espartiro, 41, a Filipino national employed by a Florida aeroparts company, pleaded guilty to charges of attempting to illegally export parts for Iranian F-4 and F-5 fighters and C130 cargo aircraft–all airplanes of U.S. origin. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison. • In 2010, Balli Aviation in the UK was fined $17 million for illegally exporting three Boeing 747s to Iran in 2008. • On March 14, 2009, U.S. federal agents arrested Hossein Ali Khoshnevisrad, an Iranian citizen, and charged him with attempting to smuggle
17 Rolls-Royce 250 turboshaft engines, the same kind that power the Bell 206, into Iran. Federal agents also are investigating a plot to smuggle Bell 412s into Iran via Mexico and Italy. One of those helicopters was equipped with nightvision goggles. • A San Diego federal grand jury has indicted a pair of Belgians, Willy De Greef and Frederic Depelchin, of smuggling U.S. aircraft parts to Iran. Counterfeiting parts for a wide variety of aircraft also is a large component of Iran’s strategy to mitigate sanctions. For instance, since the 1990s, Iran has reverse-engineered parts, assemblies and, in some cases, whole aircraft, including the Bell 205, 206 and 214 helicopter. The work is being done by Iran Aircraft Manufacturing (HESA) and Iran Helicopter Support and Renewal (Panha). The knockoffs are being marketed under the names Shahed 276 and 278, and Shabaviz 275 and 2061 and Panha 2091, a remanufactured AH-1J Cobra. A light gunship derived from the Bell 206, the Shahed 285, was unveiled in 2009. Many of these helicopters use components manufactured in Iran and from a variety of Chinese and Russian sources. To the naked eye, the Iranian copies are virtually indistinguishable from the Bell originals. o
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AeroLease closes in on Superjet order
Sukhoi’s Superjet 100 flies the flag for Russia by Kirby Harrison and Gregory Polek The only aircraft to represent the Russian civil aircraft industry on static display here at the Dubai Airshow, the Sukhoi Superjet 100 is making an impression on both sides of the globe as Mexico’s Interjet prepares to press into service its third example of the 100-seat regional jet. Speaking with AIN last week at the Alta Airline Leaders Forum in Cancun, Mexico, Nazario Cauceglia, CEO of the SSJ100’s Western sales, support and marketing arm SuperJet International, addressed some
5-percent better fuel burn than competitors although it believes that “seven or eight percent is possible.” An early bottleneck created by fuselage- and wing-mating problems has been solved and the introduction of new efficiencies is already bearing fruit. Among them was a decision to provide each worker with his own kit and specified responsibilities, and digital photographs taken through the entire assembly process that allowed an easy review of what was right and what was wrong.
at Interjet, the company has announced a dispatch reliability better than 99 percent, and average daily utilization of nine flight hours. The fourth Interjet SSJ100 is now being prepared at the SuperJet International delivery center in Italy, and the airline has firm orders for a total of 20 aircraft, plus options for 10 more in 93-seat, 34-inch pitch configuration. Asked whether the North America market might already be saturated, Cauceglia pointed out that the SuperJet International competitors are all derivatives of older designs. “Our product is the only all-new aircraft in that market [and] I think there is room for another competitor.” Cauceglia said negotiations are continuing with regard to a restructuring of the Superjet
A Moskovia Airlines Sukhoi Superjet 100 is on display here at the Dubai Airshow. The Middle East is seen as one of the most promising markets for the 100-seat regional jet.
At the 2013 Paris Air Show, Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Co. (SCAC) and Bahrain-based leasing company AeroLease signed a Letter of Intent related to financing existing and prospective deals and/or leasing of Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft. Although no numbers were given on that occasion, the very signing enabled SCAC to assert that foreign lessors, especially those from the Middle East and Southeast Asia, have an interest in the company’s products. Masood Al Bastaki, who signed the deal with Sukhoi on behalf of AeroLease, said that the lessor has been keeping an eye on the Superjet since its first flight back in 2008, the year AeroLease was founded. At the Bahrain airshow early last year, a number of people from local airlines were able to inspect a Superjet prototype on display there. Masood Al Bastaki said, “That time our partners had an opportunity to fly that airplane. They found it to be a good aircraft. We think, too, that the Superjet is a good aircraft to serve domestic flights in our region and in other parts of the world. It is a product of the world-faMasood Al Bastaki (left) with SCAC president Andrey Kalinovsky mous manufacturer with many prominent western vendors present on it.” Because of the size of the aircraft and its performance, he said, the Superjet would be good for serving domestic flights in the Gulf region. AeroLease is expected to place a firm order for the Superjet soon. “We are in negotiations right now. We are a leasing company…talking to operators in a hope that once we have concluded our talks with the airlines, we will order some aircraft in order to place them with the carriers.” Al Bastaki added that, as a company with a global reach, AeroLease is not confining itself to the Arabian territories. “We’d rather start with the market that is close to us,” he said. Since the Superjet is “still very much a new aircraft,” the lessor wants to see first how the airplane proves its merits in the Gulf market. For that purpose, an agreement with Sukhoi is being arranged on “four to five examples.” “After a period of time, when the plane earns a reputation, we will place a larger order,” Al Bastaki said.–V.K.
PowerJet SaM146 ‘a strong part of the Superjet’
of the airplane’s early production rate issues. Cauceglia said he anticipates delivery of 25 aircraft in 2013 and an increase to 40 deliveries in 2014. He added that the production facilities in Komsomolsk-on-Amur, Russia, will cut the final assembly time per aircraft from 20 days to 10 days by 2015. He attributed the slow start in ramping up production in part to the fact that, unlike competitors, the Superjet 100 represented a clean-sheet design with anticipated growing pains. But the end result, he said, amounts to “a marriage of Russian design skills and Western technology.” One example is the Russian-made SaM146 PowerJet engines, a joint venture of engine manufacturers Saturn and Snecma–Russian and French, respectively. And the combination of the engine and wing design, said SuperJet International, has resulted in a
The first two customers for the Superjet 100 were Russia’s Aeroflot and Yakulia, and Cauceglia sees the start of deliveries earlier this year to Mexico’s Interjet as a foot in the door of the western market. The third Superjet 100 for Interjet landed in Toluca, Mexico on November 6. Based on activity of the first two SSJ100s in service
100 partnership but he denied suggestions that it might negatively affect the continued growth of sales. He likened it to the normal process of adjusting to a growing program. Pilot training is also becoming a priority as production and deliveries grow. “Pilots like this airplane, and to date we have trained more than 250 of them in the SSJ100.” o
Sukhoi Superjet Gets Middle East Boost Russia’s Sberbank, Sukhoi Civil Aircraft and Abu Dhabi Investment Company (Invest AD) yesterday signed a trilateral letter of intent to cooperate in the Middle East in marketing and promotion of the Sukhoi Superjet SSJ100. “In light of the recently adopted Sberbank development strategy for 20142018, we aim at becoming a global partner for our clients,” said Alexander Dementiev, Sberbank global head of financial institutions. “We are ready to support [Sukhoi Civil Aircraft] interests at any spot in the world.” Sukhoi Civil Aircraft president Andrey Kalinovsky characterized the Middle East as one of the SSJ100’s priority markets. “In this regard, today we signed the letter of intent in order to optimize funding proposals related to purchase of our aircraft by new customers in this region.”–G.P.
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While Sukhoi (Stand 1178) and some vendors on the Sukhoi Superjet 100 have been criticized for reliability issues, Powerjet insists that its engines escape unscathed. “I believe that the SaM146 is a strong part of the Sukhoi Superjet 100 when it comes to comparison with other in-service aircraft,” Claude Poulain, the newly appointed chairman and CEO of PowerJet, told AIN. “We know that fact very well because we are supporting Sukhoi in the worldwide sales campaign,” he added. Statistics released at the MAKS 2013 event in Moscow in August showed that the SaM146s logged more than 35,000 in-flight hours in 23,000 cycles, demonstrating 99.89 percent flight readiness (a less than 15-minute delay) of the powerplants. What is Powerjet’s secret that sets it apart from other less fortunate manufacturers? “There is no secret,” Poulain replied. “We have developed a sound engine with the CFM56-proven architecture and have been demonstrating high reliability from the beginning. It is true to say that we do not create any operational problems to the airlines flying the Superjet.” Comlux, launch customer for the Sukhoi Business Jet (SBJ) on the Superjet platform, intends to fly the plane from Paris to the U.S. nonstop. “For my part, I am confident that we can meet all the necessary standards for the cross-Atlantic flights,” Poulain told AIN. The engine has “a very good EGT margin, even better than we anticipated. With specific fuel Claude Poulain consumption we were at the specification on entry-into-service and now, some 2.5 years later, we are even better than the spec.” “Because the Superjet is a regional aircraft, we focus on the maintenance costs,” added Poulain. Compared to the engine (GE CF34-10) powering the competing Embraer and Bombardier products, the SaM146 uses fewer parts, due to a reshaped high-pressure compressor with only six stages. “Besides, we have higher margins for the noise and emissions because the SaM146 was developed later and took advantage of the new technologies available at the time,” said Poulain, who was previously a long-time executive of GE-Snecma joint venture CFM International. He added that while it is already capable of producing 15 engine sets a month, PowerJet “can do more if necessary.” –V.K.
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UK launches first UAS testing center by Ian Sheppard Two UK airports announced earlier this year the creation of a National Aeronautical Centre (NAC) for the testing of unmanned aerial systems (UAS), the first such nongovernment venture in Europe. West Wales Airport at Aberporth and Newquay Airport in Cornwall, southwest England, have linked up to jointly offer to UAS developers (Unmanned Vehicles area, Stand 645) their facilities and runways, along with access to large offshore testing areas. Speaking at the NAC launch in London on September 9, managing director of West Wales Airport (WWA) Ray Mann said the worldwide market for such systems is set to grow from £3 billion ($5 billion) today to “more than £30 billion [$50 billion] for military and £100 billion for civil applications by 2020.” He said that the two centers would enhance the offering for
“testing and training for civil and military systems,” extending what has been achieved at WWA “in the past 10 years” in becoming a UAV center of excellence to Newquay. The latter offers a longer runway (10,000 feet compared with WWA’s 4,000 feet) and additional offshore test airspace (enhancing the 2,000 sq mi at WWA with a further 3,000 sq mi offshore and from 5,000 feet to FL660). This, he said, would create a capability to test “anything developed by the aerospace industry over the next 20 years.” This would be particularly useful in areas where “confidence is still lacking, [such as] command and control.” Newquay has also launched an Aerohub as “England’s only aerospace enterprise zone,” said Mann, so there is 283 acres available for development, “and half of that has airside access.” This is in addition to
The UK has established two centers for testing unmanned aerial systems. The center at Newquay Airport (above) is larger than that at West Wales Airport, offering a 10,000foot runway versus 4,000 feet and an additional 3,000 sq mi of offshore test space.
One artist’s concept depicts a future cargo UAV, which is projected as one use for unmanned aircraft in commercial air transportation.
the ParcAberporth Technology Park at WWA. Mann admitted that military budgets account for most of the NAC activity at present, “but now we want to encourage a focus on civil applications,” he said. Watchkeeper To Fly
Richard Deakin, CEO of UK air navigation service provider NATS, said preparations are being made to fly the Thales Watchkeeper UAV in controlled airspace, which he said would be “a world’s first.” The Watchkeeper will be flown remotely by a pilot, something done only in nonsegregated/uncontrolled airspace to date, apart from using an “optionally” piloted aircraft– such as the ASTREA program’s BAe Jetstream (part-funded by BAE Systems) that was flown from Prestwick to Inverness last year with a pilot on board as a safety backup. Deakin added that funding has now been secured from the European Union’s Single European Sky ATM Research (Sesar) project, which would lead to Watchkeeper flights in “the summer of 2014,” following simulations outside controlled airspace next April. Mann added that the Watchkeeper has already been flying for four years at WWA and that it has accumulated in excess of 300 flights. “Many others have used us,” he added, including Selex ES with its Falko UAS. He also noted that the GE EMCAT electromagnet launcher system is available as a support facility. Deakin said, “New realms are opening up,” such as the use of UAVs for search and rescue, and, he said, “perhaps cargo UAVs will be the first step” in unmanned commercial air transportation. He added, “There is some way to go before we see remotely piloted passenger
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flights, but I am confident that perceptions will change.” Remote Pilots a Problem
He admitted, however, that there is much work to be done. For example, he said, “Remote pilots are not subject to [formal] licensing at present.” Surprisingly, Deakin commented, “I am confident that we could integrate UASs into controlled airspace, so the door is open and I’m looking forward to the first team coming through that door.” However, there are many caveats to his comments: to date regulators have flatly refused to countenance such flights without a pilot onboard, as Gary Clayton, chairman of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Systems Association (UAVS), pointed out at the NAC launch event. Neither, it appears, are there any clear regulations yet. “CAP 722 [a CAA publication giving guidance on unmanned aircraft system operations in UK airspace] is the key document,” said Clayton. “It is the most advanced document at the moment but it is only guidance.” The UK took the lead in establishing CAP722, alongside updates to its Air Navigation Order (ANO), and, according to Clayton, it has been used around the world as a blueprint. He added that the industry has reached an understanding with regulators that there would be a principle of “equivalence” as far as ATC goes. Deakin agreed that NATS would not ask anything more of UAVs than already asked of manned aircraft, something the CAA has also stated. Mann pointed out that it is other regulation that is underdeveloped at present. “UAV manufacturers don’t have a clear mandate on what regulations to adhere to…It is still not clear.” Clayton said that
“equivalence” in this case is hard to identify because the regulations refer again and again to “the pilot shall.” Asked what the “equivalent” of a pilot is (CAP 722 refers to “equivalent and transparent” with regard to manned aircraft), Deakin said that “sense and avoid” is easier in controlled airspace because radars and transponders show where the aircraft is, but he admitted that there would have to be a pilot talking back to controllers to accept instructions. “You don’t have to invent a robot pilot,” said Mann, as the ground-based remote pilot can talk to the controllers. Difficulties arise, however, when it comes to dealing with emergencies and failures, for example, in the datalink–and convincing regulators that a pilot is not required in the aircraft to handle this in controlled airspace. “It is recognized at the moment that you will always have to have a man in the loop,” said Mann. He added, “The question facing the industry and regulators is what kind of redundancy and fail-safe procedures and technology are required to see UAVs unsegregated from commercial air traffic without a pilot on board “just in case.” UK company Qinetiq is also very much involved at WWA and reported at the DSEi event in London in September that it was seeking opportunities for UAS development in the Middle East, where, in particular, it sees the oil-and-gas sector as potentially a very large market. Until recently the company operated the Aeronautics Aerostar UAV in Afghanistan for the Royal Netherlands Army. o
sakhir airbase 16-18 Jan 2014
UK aerospace industry looks to strengthen MidEast ties
diversify the global customer base; and to develop greener aircraft by focusing on the complex, high-value parts of an aircraft, such as the engines, wings, advanced systems and aerostructures. The industry aims to accomplish this through a £40 million fund to increase innovation and collaboration in the supply chain; funding to support 500 Masters graduate places; and the creation of an Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI), using £2 billion of matched industry and government funding. Included in this is the creation of the National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP), which aims to mature 100 underdeveloped aerospace technologies and create jobs in the supply chain. According to ADS, the AGP has been given “significant support” from the British Prime Minister, David Cameron; the Chancellor, George Osborne; and the Secretary of State for Business, the Rt. Hon. Dr. Vince Cable MP. It is cochaired by the Minister of State for Business and Enterprise, Michael Fallon MP. Adding his support to the initiative is Her Majesty’s Consul General to Dubai, Edward Hobart, who will be co-hosting the ADS UK industry reception on Monday evening, November 18. The event, which is sponsored by BAE systems, will take place at the UK pavilion and will recognize the many achievements of the UK aerospace industry. –J.H.S. MIFFLIN-SCHMID DESIGN
Middle Eastern investors have every economy needs,” said Paul Everitt, CEO reason to turn their attention to the UK, of ADS Group. Furthermore, the industry is “very according to ADS, the UK trade organization for the aerospace, defense, security well established, with the skills and knowledge shaped over 60 years of commercial and space industries. The UK industry is in a “remarkably air travel,” said a spokesperson for ADS, strong position,” according to ADS: Not adding that it has contributed to “many, only does it boast a 17-percent global if not all, of the biggest aircraft developmarket share, second only behind the ment projects, from Frank Whittle’s invenU.S., but it also has a strong global foot- tion of the turbojet to the design and print. Around 75 percent of the industry’s development of the Concorde.” Today it revenue, which in 2011 totaled $39.13 bil- is a major supplier to many of the aircraft lion (£24.2 billion), comes from exports. that Middle Eastern airlines are purchasMoreover, there is a 50/50 split between ing, including the Airbus A380, Boeing civil and defense sales, despite tightening 787 and Airbus A350XWB. The future, meanwhile, is promisdefense budgets throughout Europe. This highlights the “remarkable strengths” of ing. With an expected global demand of 29,000 large commercial aircraft, 24,000 the UK industry, according to ADS. Locally, the industry supports more business jets and 12,800 regional aircraft than 230,000 jobs, both directly and indi- between now and 2030, the UK market rectly, and has the potential to secure up share has the potential to reach $352 bilto 115,000 additional jobs over the long lion, estimates ADS. term. “From the depths of the recession, Global Competition the industry has grown by over 40 percent and is one of the few sectors in the Although the industry is doing well, economy generating highly skilled, well- it is facing increasing competition from paid jobs, significant investments in inno- both established and developing aerovation and the high-tech exports the UK space manufacturing nations. There is 105.1897_AIN_Dubai13_Charter_254x165 07.11.13 11:25 Seite 1
also pressure to make aircraft leaner and greener, thus satisfying public demand as well as regulatory requirements. The key, according to ADS, is a focus on research and development. “[The industry] has to invest in research and development, which will allow the UK to meet global demand and develop the radically different technologies that are likely to be at the forefront of aero-engineering in the coming years,” a spokesperson for ADS said. Fortunately, many of the industry’s strengths already lie in R&D, engineering and manufacturing, according to ADS. A spokesperson for the trade organization noted that the wings of the A380–“one of the most significant aircraft development programs of the 21st Century”–were developed and are manufactured in the UK. The industry also specializes in the design and manufacture of other highvalue, high-technology areas, including aero-engines, helicopters and advanced systems, such as landing gear, fuel, avionics and electrical power. One of the ways in which the industry intends to support R&D projects, thus maintaining its market position and momentum, is through the Aerospace Growth Partnership (AGP), a joint industry/government commitment to protect, exploit and position the UK aerospace industry over the next 20 years. Among the goals of the AGP are: to develop a world-class supply chain;
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28 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
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by Chris Pocock The path to a fully multi-role Eurofighter Typhoon is finally becoming clear. At a media briefing here tomorrow the company hopes to announce the first test flight in Italy of an aircraft carrying the MBDA Storm Shadow missile. The jet’s full operational clearance to drop smart bombs came recently. Meanwhile one of the prototypes will fly next spring with the Selex AESA radar. Neither the Storm Shadow nor the AESA radar is yet under contract. There have been reports that Saudi money is funding the work but Laurie Hilditch, Eurofighter capability manager, told AIN Monday it was being funded by industry. The four European partner nations have agreed the scope of “evolution packages” (EPs); EP2 was signed recently, for delivery by the end of 2015. It contains various avionics and other upgrades, including modifications to the jet’s current CaptorM radar to allow firing of the MBDA Meteor BVRAAM.
The Storm Shadow integration will likely form part of the Phase 2B Enhancement Package (P2E-B) for delivery by 2017. The equivalent German weapon–the KEPD 350 Taurus–will also soon fly on a test aircraft (IPA7 in Germany). The full-scale Eurofighter model on the static display line is sporting conformal fuel tanks (CFTs) for the first time. These are being proposed to export customers, rather than the four European partners, although the latest-production Tranche 3 jets for Germany, Italy, Spain and UK do make structural provision for their carriage. According to Hilditch, the CFTs provide weapons carriage flexibility as well as longer range in air-surface missions. “Our preferred longrange attack configuration is two Storm Shadows, one on each center-wing pylon, plus CFTs and a supersonic fuel tank on the centerline. That allows us to retain the full air-to-air missile set for the swing role.”
Eurofighter is showing conformal fuel tanks for the first time on the full-scale model here at the Dubai Airshow. The company described the addition of new weapons and avionics that will make the aircraft truly swing-role in the future.
Aero Mod Adds Apex Strake Airframe modifications intended to improve the aerodynamic performance of the Eurofighter have been revealed by EADS Cassidian. The Aero Mod Kit consists of a leadingedge root extension, also known as an apex strake; a triangular modification of the fuselage strake; and a new set of extended trailing-edge flaperons. The modifications have been tested in high- and low-speed wind tunnels and by test pilots in a flight simulator using modified flight control software. Flight testing could begin in June 2014. Cassidian said that the modifications would “push the Eurofighter’s performance at lower speeds well beyond current levels and provide a robust platform for weapon integration in the future.” n
Making the case for a UAE fighter uContinued from page 1
Forming up on the mother ‘bus Multicolored smoke streams from the tightly formed Al Fursan MB-339s as they play chase with a massive Emirates Airline Airbus A380 during the Dubai Airshow 2013 flying display.
Airshow central uContinued from page 1
associated with the seasonal summer-winter transition blew some fine sand into the air during the show, the temperatures on the static display have been moderate, and the show site offers plenty of refreshment opportunities with delicious and healthy local foods. However, most visitors to the
show are here to do business, and a great deal of business activity ensued during the early days of the show. Record-breaking orders for new airliners will keep Airbus and Boeing assembly lines busy for many years, and other OEMs also announced significant aircraft purchase plans. Bigger and better is a constant theme in Dubai, and there’s no question that this year’s
Dubai Airshow stepped up and exceeded expectations. Of course, this means that expectations will be even higher in 2015 (November 8-12), and it will be interesting to experience the contrast when that show rolls around. o
also noted that, “any fast jet purchase is a lengthy process.” Khaled told AIN that, “the UAE has excellent defense and commercial relationships with both the UK and France.” But the UK “has come with an industrial program,” he added. Hammond told journalists here Sunday that the UK was building partnerships and having “comprehensive discussions with the UAE across a whole range of technologies.” He declined to elaborate, except to note that the talks were not about simple equipment deals. Throughout this week’s British charm offensive, the French have maintained a diplomatic silence. Nobody from Dassault or the rest of Team Rafale was prepared to comment on-the-record to AIN. French defense minister JeanYves Le Drian visited the show Sunday, but his diary of meetings with UAE officials was not disclosed. French media reported that he met here with the Saudi vice-minister of defense, Prince Salman bin Sultan. Le Drian flew on to Qatar– another country where the
Eurofighter and the Rafale are in competition, along with American warplanes. Meanwhile, Hammond disclosed that he had met here with the King of Bahrain, and enjoyed “fruitful discussions…we hope that Bahrain will decide soon to join the Typhoon family.” It has been reported that Saudi Arabia would fund any Typhoon purchase by Bahrain, and that the Kingdom has been providing interim funding for two upgrades to the Typhoon that are seen by most observers as essential, if the jet is to secure further orders in the Gulf region, namely an AESA radar and integration of the Storm Shadow cruise missile. At the same time, and in seeming contradiction to this reported Saudi generosity, BAE Systems has been obliged to note in its financial reports to shareholders, that the Saudis have still not agreed prices for their own Typhoons, although some 30 aircraft have already been delivered. Dunne declined to comment on these reports yesterday, except to note, “We enjoy a constructive relationship with the Royal Saudi Air Force and discuss capability enhancements with them as they come on stream.” o
www.ainonline.com • November 19, 2013 • Dubai Airshow News 29
Path becoming clear for multi-role Eurofighter
A Lockheed Martin Sniper targeting pod is displayed below the model here, although the partner nations chose the Israeli Litening pod so the alternative Thales Damocles pod was integrated as part of the Al-Salam contract for the Royal Saudi Air Force (it already flies the Sniper pod). Debate rages between the radar houses about repositioning AESA arrays.” Eurofighter is planning to fly two jets with the E-scan radar, the single-seat IPA5 and the twin-seat IPA8. “The E-scan radar will be available to the market when our current and potential customers need it,” the company said. Eurofighter has made only passing reference to the electronic attack (EA) possibilities that are an inherent capability of AESA radars. The UK is known to be funding research into the waveforms required for EA under the Bright Adder program. This capability would likely be added as part of a Phase 3 Enhancement (P3E) package sometime after 2017. P3E could also include antiship missiles (AShMs). At the last Dubai Airshow, Eurofighter displayed a Marte AShM, but the Saab Rbs15 was in the offer Eurofighter made to the Indian air force. o
z Sagitta UAV Approaches Design Review
z Falcon Aviation Signs LOI for Pilatus PC-24 Jet Abu Dhabi-based Falcon Aviation Services inked a letter of intent (LOI) for the Pilatus PC-24 business jet yesterday afternoon here at Dubai 2013. The new jet was launched in May at the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition (EBACE) in Geneva. While Pilatus said it will not open the PC-24’s order book until EBACE 2014, this is the first reported LOI for the new aircraft, potentially placing the UAE aircraft and charter management firm as one of the launch customers when orders are officially taken. Signing the tentative deal for the PC-24 yesterday at the Pilatus chalet were HH Dr. Sheikh Sultan Bin Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahayan, chairman of Falcon Aviation Services, and Pilatus vice president of government aviation Jim Roche. The LOI is for an unspecified number of the twinjets.
z Modified Air Tractor Makes Dubai Debut Making its public debut at the Dubai Airshow is the Air Tractor AT-802i, an agricultural aircraft heavily modified for counter-insurgency/light attack/ISR missions. The aircraft were purchased by the UAE with a mission system integrated by Iomax, and it is believed that a batch of 24 is nearing the end of delivery after the first arrived at the end of 2010. A variety of weapons is available for the AT-802i, the aircraft on display here being shown with GBU-12 laser-guided bombs on two of its six under-wing hardpoints. A centerline fuselage hardpoint carries a FLIR Systems EO/IR (electro-optical/infrared) turret on Iomax’s flexible pod system. Here at the show the AT-802U is displayed alongside a Cessna AC-208 Combat Caravan, which is also outfitted for light attack/ISR duties. It is armed with Hellfire missiles, of which up to four can be carried. Both AT-802i and AC-208 are part of an impressive display of UAE military aircraft that range in size from the Boeing C-17 transport to the Grob G115TA Acro primary trainer.
Yesterday, Alenia Aermacchi and the Italian air force signed an agreement for development, testing, certification and support of the Praetorian version of the MC-27J. Signing the agreement were (l-r) Ben Stone, head of Aermacchi U.S.; Italian air force Lt. Gen. Pasquale Preziosa; Italy undersecretary of defense Roberta Pinotti; Alenia Aermacchi CEO Giuseppe Giordo; and Bill Kasting, GM ATK Defense Electronic Systems.
Engine manufacturers score big airline orders by Bill Carey Engine manufacturers reaped the rewards of the airline order bonanza at this year’s Dubai Airshow, led by GE Aviation (Pavilion A9), which logged $26 billion in engine orders and service agreements from Emirates, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways. Collectively, the three Gulf carriers placed orders for 450 new GE9X engines now under development for the new Boeing 777X widebody. GE also received orders for Boeing 787 GEnx engines and 777 GE90 engines. With Emirates’s commitment for 150 Boeing 777Xs, including 300 GE9X engines valued at $11 billion at list prices, GE Aviation secured its largest-ever engine order from an airline. “The confidence placed by Emirates in GE Aviation is almost overwhelming,” said David Joyce, GE Aviation president and CEO. “Emirates is critical in enabling GE to demonstrate and improve upon its high-thrust engine technologies.”
Emirates also placed an order for 50 additional four-engine Airbus A380 superjumbos, which are powered by Engine Alliance GP7200 engines. The value of the engine order was not immediately available. Engine Alliance (Stand 1963) is the 50/50 joint venture of GE Aviation and Pratt & Whitney. Rolls-Royce (Stand 1845) won a $5 billion order from Etihad Airways for Trent XWB engines to power Etihad’s 50 newly ordered Airbus A350 XWBs. The order, which includes long-term “TotalCare” support, increases the total number of Etihad A350s on order to 62, all powered by the Trent XWBs. Etihad has also ordered Trent 700 engines to power one Airbus A330 freighter. The airline has 28 A330s in service powered by Trent 700s and 11 in-service A340s powered by Trent 500s. “This is a significant order for the Trent XWB from a valued customer,” said Tony Wood,
Rolls-Royce president for aerospace. “We look forward to developing our relationship further.” CFM International (Stand 1881), the joint venture of GE Aviation of the U.S. and France’s Snecma, finalized an earlierannounced $4.3 billion order for Leap-1A engines from Turkish carrier Pegasus Airlines, to power 100 Airbus A320/A321neos. The Istanbul-based, low-cost airline currently operates a fleet of 45 CFM-powered Boeing 737s. Etihad Airways announced a $2.8 billion order with CFM International for 52 Leap-1A engines to power 26 new Airbus A321neos, scheduled to begin delivery in 2018. The order includes a 15-year support agreement. “We are happy to welcome Etihad Airways as a CFM customer,” said Jean-Paul Ebanga, CFM International president and CEO. “We think this engine is going to be the best we’ve ever built, and Etihad Airways will realize the benefits from day one, (with) lower fuel burn, lower noise and emissions.” Deutsche Lufthansa selected CFM’s CFM56-5B engine to power 30 Airbus A320ceos (current engine option), an agreement valued at $610 million at list prices. o Tecnam twin joins eagle team
z Jetex Opens FBO at Dubai World Central Jetex Flight Support (Chalet A29, A30) opened its full-service FBO for business aircraft here at Dubai World Central/Al Maktoum International Airport last week in a temporary facility. The company is offering a VIP lounge, ground support, fueling, handling and security services. Other amenities include hotel accommodations, catering and limousine services. The flight support firm plans to build a three-story standalone terminal, due for completion in 2015, at the general aviation zone in DWC’s Aviation District, an area that also includes the Dubai Airshow site.
Early next year Cassidian’s Sagitta unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) research project should reach its critical design review. A range slot has already been booked for an August 2015 first flight, and the clock is ticking as the Sagitta team prepares to meet that deadline. The reference point for the program is a notional nine-meter span tailless UAV, and the team has decided to build a 1:4 scale flying demonstrator to validate the new technologies. Sagitta is to be powered by two 600-Newton jet engines, with vectorsteering being one of the technologies to be investigated in the flying program. With a maximum takeoff weight of 125 kg, the Sagitta Sagitta will start flying as a quarter-scale will have a 5 kg payload demonstrator to validate new technologies. capability and a top speed of 200 knots. The vehicle will feature autonomous takeoff and landing capability, but there will also be a safety operator/ pilot capability built in. Sagitta was launched officially at the end of 2011. After the first flight in 2015 Cassidian expects the air vehicle to fly for at least two years in the initial phase of trials, but that could be extended.
30 Dubai Airshow News • November 19, 2013 • www.ainonline.com
Yesterday Eagle Aviation took delivery of this Tecnam MMA light surveillance platform here at the Dubai Airshow. The MMA is the Italian Tecnam P2006T light twin outfitted with a special mission suite by systems integrator Airborne Technologies. Celebrating the delivery of the San Marino-registered MMA were Aftab H. Shah (left), finance manager of Eagle Aviation, Wolfgang Grumeth (center), CEO and managing director of Airborne Technologies and Manuel Garbaccio (right), Eagle Aviation’s chairman.
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AIN Dubai Airshow News 11-19-13 Day 3 Issue