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Flight International - 29 May 2018

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Think shrink
Mitsubishi will
accelerate work
on downsized
MRJ70 in bid
to beat scope
clause threat 10
Iran ban
How Trump?s
action against
nuclear pact
with Tehran will
hit commercial
backlogs 12
29 May-4 June 2018 Israeli campaign marks first offensive use of
stealthy F-35 as nation?s Adir fleet cuts its teeth
With Boeing?s
777X just one
year from flight,
we check out
GE9X engine
progress 34
flightglobal.com
COMBAT DEBUT
Lightning strikes
Big push
ISSN 0 0 1 5 - 3 7 1 0
�80
2 2
9
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CONTENTS
Volume 193 Number 5638
29 MAY-4 JUNE 2018
NEWS
Iran ban
How Trump?s
action against
nuclear pact
with Tehran will
hit commercial
backlogs 12
29 May-4 June 2018
THIS WEEK
8 Cuba begins probe into fatal 737 crash
9 Max deliveries soared during first year.
H160M set broad mission challenge to hit
French air force requirements.
Boeing folding wingtips up for scrutiny
by FAA
10 Mitsubishi shifts focus to MRJ70 as it targets
seat of scope clause flaw
flightglobal.com
COMBAT DEBUT
Lightning strikes
Big push
With Boeing?s
777X just one
year from flight,
we check out
GE9X engine
progress 34
ISSN 0 0 1 5 - 3 7 1 0
�80
2 2
9
770015 371303
Israeli air force
Israeli campaign marks first offensive use of
stealthy F-35 as nation?s Adir fleet cuts its teeth
FIN_290518_301.indd 1
24/05/2018 09:20
COVER IMAGE
Pictured arriving at Israel?s
Nevatim air base in late
2016, the ?Adir? has
become the first F-35 to
deploy its weapons in
anger, during strikes in
Middle East region P18
AIR TRANSPORT
12 Rethink required for Iran fleet renewal
13 Airbus claiming compliance with WTO.
Air Italy flies the flag as it reveals
ex-Qatar twin.
Flybe favours Q400 over big jets
14 A321 capacity hike needs exit strategy.
Boeing ramps up robots as it pushes
automation
NEWS FOCUS
16 SIA tightens ties with sluggish Silkair
BUSINESS AVIATION
22 First outing for Elbit-owned Universal
23 Zunum fired up with launch customer.
Interflight offers service to wow VIPs
as Voluxis.
Pilatus hands over third PC-24
Universal Avionics and Elbit go public at EBACE P22
COVER STORY
18 Strike one Lockheed Martin-produced F35I
Adir attacked targets for first time during
recent Israeli action, air force chief reveals
FEATURES
25 COMMERCIAL ENGINES
Power is pressing Good aircraft design starts
with the engine ? but modern turbofans might
be pushing their limits
26 Current affairs Rolls-Royce details its vision of a
hybrid electric-powered future
32 Powerbase Flight Fleets Analyzer details engine
selection balance for Airbus and Boeing types
34 Thrusting onwards GE Aviation is powering
ahead with its most advanced engine
REGULARS
7Comment
36 Straight & Level
37Letters
39Classified
41Jobs
43 Working Week
NEXT WEEK EBACE
We report from business
aviation?s Geneva special.
Plus, Bombardier lets us fly
its midsize Challenger 350
Airbus, US Navy
Linda Epstein
BEHIND THE HEADLINES
Dominic Perry (pictured)
visited the Czech Republic
capital Prague to attend a
military helicopter event
(P9). And Stephen Trimble
was in Seattle, where
Mitsubishi Aircraft revealed
its MRJ70 ambitions (P10)
DEFENCE
18 US Navy Hornets to get Raytheon sensor
boost
19 Gripen E testing heads for new phase.
Milestones speed UK?s training fleet
transition
20 Venom and Romeo near end of
the line.
H135 powers up for Sea Ranger replacement
bid
Universal Avionics
Think shrink
Mitsubishi will
accelerate work
on downsized
MRJ70 in bid
to beat scope
clause threat 10
What?s next for turbofans? P25. Raytheon given contract for US Navy Hornet sensor modernisation P18
Download the 2017 Commercial Engines Report
now with updated enhanced data and in-depth market analysis
flightglobal.com/commengines
CFM 2017 strip ad.indd 1
flightglobal.com
15/06/2017 08:52
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 3
19/07/2012 17:51
CONTENTS
Image of
the week
BOC Aviation has taken
delivery of its first Boeing
737 Max 8, with the aircraft
leased to Turkish carrier
Corendon Airlines. Flight
Fleets Analyzer shows that
the narrowbody, registered
TC-MKS, was originally
ordered by GECAS. BOC
has another 83 737
Max-family jets on order
AirTeamImages
View more great aviation
shots online and in our
weekly tablet edition:
flightglobal.com/
flight-international
The week in numbers
Question of the week
13%
Last week, we asked: World Trade Organization ruling? You
said:
Flight Dashboard
Total votes:
AirAsia X passenger numbers ?surged? to 1.59m, lifting the
Malaysian carrier?s Q1 operating profit by a fifth to $15.2m
$42.7m
1,318
Everyone loses
694 votes
52%
24%
Flight Dashboard
For Q1, privately held South Korean budget carrier T?way Air
posted record operating profit, on revenue up 50% at $189m
35,000
UTC
Number of people Pratt & Whitney parent United Technologies
wants to hire by 2022 as part of its $15bn investment plan
24%
Airbus the winner
312 votes
Boeing victory
312 votes
This week, we ask: MRJ70 prospects?
? Mitsubishi?s saviour ? Could hurt larger version
? Outsold by Embraer
Vote at flightglobal.com
FlightGlobal?s premium news and data service delivers breaking air transport stories with
profiles, schedules, and fleet, financial and traffic information flightglobal.com/dashboard
Download the Military
Simulator Census online now.
CAE ? Your worldwide training partner of choice
4 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
www.flightglobal.com/milisim
flightglobal.com
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COMMENT
Outmuscled?
Frequent development missteps have made Mitsubishi Aircraft?s attempt to enter the market
for regional jets much harder, and seismic shifts in the segment threaten more difficulty ahead
o sector of the aerospace industry is in more turmoil than the regional jet market.
Within weeks or months, the Bombardier CSeries
will likely become an Airbus-owned property. Embraer?s E-Jet family, including the second-generation
E2, could be absorbed into Boeing.
That leaves new entrants, such as Mitsubishi Aircraft, with its MRJ, in a precarious position.
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries is no corporate lightweight, but does that Nagoya boardroom have the financial and industrial muscle to take on Boeing in a head-tohead competition for regional jet orders? That story is
yet to unfold, but Mitsubishi?s options are limited.
Five delays in development have pushed entry into
service for the MRJ90 back by six years, and two US regional carriers that account for 70% of the backlog have
no place for the aircraft in their fleets without the increasingly distant prospect of scope clause relief.
Does Mitsubishi have the financial
and industrial muscle to take on
Boeing for regional jet orders?
The recent production go-ahead for the smaller
MRJ70 may provide a solution, as it sits below the
weight threshold for the scope clause limit. But that
strategy will only work if airlines accept a cabin that
can accommodate up to seven fewer passengers than
the maximum of 76 seats permitted.
The Mitsubishi Regional Jet may have a troubled origin story, but it is still a significant one. It was the
MRJ90 that launched the Pratt & Whitney geared turbofan engine family. The MRJ70 is the smallest airliner
Nils Jorgensen/REX/Shutterstock
N
Bigger might well be better
with fly-by-wire controls. Both aircraft represent Japanese industry?s most impressive attempt to enter the
passenger market since the ill-fated YS-11 in the 1980s.
Japan is not the only entity with something at stake
in the success of the MRJ. In a market that has been unable to support a successful new entrant since the creation of Embraer almost 50 years ago, the entire industry
benefits if a viable new competitor can survive.
Mitsubishi Aircraft now seems to be getting its act
together. A fifth schedule delay announced in January
2017 finally seemed to wake the company to the strong
possibility of failure. In the last 17 months, it has
launched a sweeping re-organisation, completed an urgent redesign of the MRJ90?s wiring and avionics and
continued to make progress in flight testing.
The odds against a new entrant in the regional jet
market have never seemed higher. Mitsubishi Aircraft?s
early mistakes made its position even harder. But the
company is clearly responding. It knows what is at
stake ? and it is not just the MRJ. ?
See This Week P10
Check your assumptions
T
Stay up to date with the latest
news and analysis from the
commercial aviation sector:
flightglobal.com/dashboard
flightglobal.com
he engines that power today?s airliners are things of
beauty: massive, powerful, reliable. They are even
quiet, clean and economical ? remarkably so, in fact.
By one widely marked measure of performance, today?s turbofans must stand as more or less the world?s
most reliable big machines. There is more to an airliner?s dispatch reliability than the engines, but nothing
can happen unless they start up and deliver, on cue.
Dispatch reliability of 99%-plus is today assumed.
But that is essentially perfection and, as everyone
knows, perfection is generally too much to ask for. Indeed, engine makers have recently been experiencing
some difficulty in delivering the near-enough-perfection that their customers have come to expect.
As our report on commercial engine programmes
notes, some of that difficulty may be nothing more than
the hiccups that come with new products. But some
may stem from the fact that the pursuit of more power
and better fuel economy has pushed jet engine design
to its engineering limits. Something, perhaps, has to
give: engine life, time between overhauls, even dispatch reliability.
For years, airlines have had the luxury of assuming
essentially perfect reliability from robust equipment
which operates comfortably inside its limits. If airlines
want to go on pushing the limits to fly further on less
fuel, they may have to abandon some assumptions. ?
See Feature P25
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 7
THIS WEEK
For up-to-the-minute air transport news,
network and fleet information sign up at:
flightglobal.com/dashboard
BRIEFING
AIR INDIA PRIVATISATION AT RISK
Xinhua/REX/Shutterstock
OWNERSHIP New Delhi could halt its planned privatisation of
Air India, aviation secretary R N Choubey has warned. ?If the
price is not appropriate, then government reserves the right of
not selling the airline,? he says. Expressions of interest are due
by 31 May, with the authorities hoping to sell a 76% stake in the
flag carrier. A new owner would also have to take on half of the
Star Alliance member?s Rs488 billion ($7.47 billion) debt, plus
about Rs88.2 billion in current liabilities.
IRKUT SEES SOARING INTEREST IN MC-21
SALES Eleven additional airlines are ?conducting in-depth
studies? of the MC-21 twinjet, according to Irkut, which has so
far secured firm orders for 175 examples. The company?s first
MC-21-300 test aircraft made its debut in May 2017, and was
recently followed by a second example. Meanwhile, Russian
trade and industry minister Denis Manturov says that certain
structures and avionics equipment on the Sukhoi Superjet 75
will be ?unified with the MC-21?.
EASA TARGETS PW1100G SOFTWARE GLITCH
PROPULSION The European Aviation Safety Agency has told
operators of Pratt & Whitney PW1100G-powered Airbus
A320neos to update, within 30 days, the software governing
the engines? FADEC system. Certification tests had revealed an
issue with the software logic that could prevent the restart of a
powerplant in certain high-thrust conditions, EASA says.
BAE SECURES F-35 SUPPORT DEAL
CONTRACT BAE Systems has received a contract from
Lockheed Martin worth more than $100 million to support the
maintenance and replacement of electronic warfare systems for
all operators of the F-35 Lightning II. The sustainment deal will
also include repair and upgrade work on the stealth fighter?s
ASQ-239 Barracuda electronic warfare suite, BAE says.
ALLEGIANT GOES MOBILE WITH NEW A320
HANDOVER Allegiant Air has taken delivery of its first Airbus
A320 to have been assembled at the airframer?s Mobile site in
Alabama. The narrowbody ? registered N256NV ? is aircraft 11
from an order that was recently expanded to total 13 units. The
acquisitions support the Las Vegas-based airline?s transition to
an all-A320 fleet from using Boeing MD-80s.
LATEST PHASE OF MH370 QUEST TO END
SEARCH The current search effort for missing Malaysia Airlines
flight MH370 will end on 29 May, the new government in Kuala
Lumpur says. ?We?re committed to continue the search to 29
May,? says transport minister Anthony Loke, with the activity
conducted using US specialist Ocean Infinity. ?We?ll make a
decision after 29 May, depending on the results of the search?
for the wreckage of the lost Boeing 777-200ER, he adds.
US MARINE CORPS WILL USE SWITCHBLADE
MUNITIONS The US Marine Corps has ordered its first batch
of AeroVironment Switchblade armed unmanned air vehicles.
Carrying a grenade-sized munition from Orbital ATK, the
Switchblade has an operating range of up to 5.4nm (10km). The
purchase forms part of a follow-on contract from the US Army.
8 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
Jet came down shortly after take-off from Havana, killing 111 people
ACCIDENT GHIM-LAY YEO WASHINGTON DC
Cuba begins probe
into fatal 737 crash
Aged aircraft wet-leased from Mexican charter airline after
parts shortage forced national carrier to ground An-158s
I
nvestigators in Cuba are trying
to determine what caused a
Mexican-owned and operated
Boeing 737-200 to crash in the
nation on 18 May, killing 111 of
its 113 passengers and crew. The
twinjet came down in Santiago
de Las Vegas, about 5.4nm
(10km) from Havana airport,
shortly after taking off while operating flight 972 to the Cuban
city of Holguin.
With the registration XA-UHZ,
the aircraft involved in the accident was owned and operated by
Mexican charter carrier Global Air
? also known as Damojh Airlines
? and was being flown under a
lease agreement with Cubana. Delivered in 1979 and first operated
by Piedmont Airlines, the 737 was
crewed by six Mexican nationals.
It is unclear how long Cubana
had leased the 737 for, but Flight
Fleets Analyzer shows that it had
also used the same aircraft for
about eight months in 2009. The
Cuban carrier has been wet-leasing
aircraft to operate flights after it
grounded its fleet of Antonov
An-158s earlier this year. This
�
move followed a struggle to obtain
spare parts for the twinjets, which
in turn impacted operational reliability. Cuba?s civil aviation author-
ity in mid-May formally grounded
the An-158, six of which had been
in Cubana?s fleet since deliveries
commenced in 2013.
Mexico?s transportation ministry says Damojh had a fleet of
three aircraft prior to the loss.
The Mexico City-based carrier,
which began service in 1990, had
undergone routine inspections in
November 2017 and had cleared
those checks, the ministry adds.
The airline also had the required
permits and approvals for the
wet-lease operations with Cubana, it confirms.
Investigators retrieved a cockpit voice recorder from the aircraft?s wreckage the day after the
accident, with Cuban transportation minister Adel Yzquierdo describing the unit as having been
in good condition.
A Boeing technical team is also
providing assistance, at the request of the US National Transportation Safety Board.
Fleets Analyzer records show
that the Pratt & Whitney JT8Dpowered aircraft had accumulated more than 62,000 flight hours
and 66,000 cycles during its operational life. ?
Additional reporting by
Jon Hemmerdinger in Boston
flightglobal.com
THIS WEEK
Mitsubishi shifts
focus to MRJ70
This Week P10
PROGRAMME STEPHEN TRIMBLE WASHINGTON DC
Max deliveries soared during first year
B
oeing has passed the one-year
delivery anniversary of the 737
Max with a large in-service fleet
that has fulfilled promises of improved fuel efficiency while battling normal teething problems.
The manufacturer says it delivered 130 aircraft representing two
versions of the 737 Max in the 12
months since handing over the first
Max 8 to Lion Air?s Malaysia-based
subsidiary Malindo Air in May
2017. That figure might have been
even higher, but engine supplier
CFM International fell several
weeks behind on a planned rampup of Leap-1B engine production.
The GE Aviation/Safran Aircraft
Engines joint venture plans to
catch up on deliveries during the
third quarter of this year.
In delivering 130 Max 8 and
Max 9 aircraft within the first year,
Boeing almost doubled the number of A320neo-family narrowbodies that Airbus handed over to
customers over its first 12 months
of shipments. Airbus also faced
supplier production shortfalls, involving cabin interiors and Pratt &
Whitney PW1100G engines.
So far, 28 737 Max operators
have logged 118,000h across almost 41,800 flights, and carried
6.5 million passengers, Boeing
says.
Flight Fleets Analyzer records
show that Southwest Airlines has
Boeing
With 130 aircraft transferred to 28 operators since debut with Malindo Air, Boeing hails performance of re-engined type
Leap-1B-powered narrowbody has met its fuel efficiency targets
series operates with a mission
dispatch rate of over 99.7%.
The in-service fleet now stands
at a mission dispatch rate of
99.4%, and Boeing expects this to
reach 99.7% by the end of 2018. ?
the largest current inventory,
with 15 737-8s in operation, followed by Air Canada, with 13.
The 737 Max family entered
the market facing a high bar for
reliability, as the mature 737NG
ROTORCRAFT DOMINIC PERRY PRAGUE
CERTIFICATION
STEPHEN TRIMBLE
WASHINGTON DC
H160M set broad mission challenge
to hit French air force requirements
Boeing folding
wingtips up for
scrutiny by FAA
T
?We want the H160M
to be capable of?
neutralising light
aircraft and UAVs?
Lt Col Eric Goffinon
Helicopters commander, French air force
flightglobal.com
T
Airbus Helicopters
he French air force has requested 38 Airbus Helicopters H160Ms as its share of the
country?s tri-service medium-category rotorcraft acquisition.
Paris has indicated a total requirement for 169 aircraft via its
h閘icopt鑢e interarm閑s l間er
programme, with deliveries to
begin around 2025.
All of the force?s H160Ms will be
capable of refuelling in flight, says
Lt Col Eric Goffinon, commander
of the service?s helicopter component, although it will not fit its entire fleet with refuelling probes.
The H160M must be able to receive fuel from Airbus Defence &
Space A400Ms and Lockheed
Martin KC-130Js. ?It is a chal-
Roles will include reconnaissance, interception and close air support
lenge for Airbus,? says Goffinon,
?but they are working on it.?
To replace the air force?s Airbus Helicopters H125M Fennec
and SA330 Puma rotorcraft, the
H160M will be equipped for a
broad range of missions, including search and rescue, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and close air support.
Armaments will include a
20mm cannon and guided rock-
ets, and for the air force potentially also a pilot-controlled
7.62mm gun, for use when intercepting light aircraft. If this cannot be achieved, it will continue
to deploy with a sniper on board.
?We want the H160M to be capable of finding and neutralising
light aircraft and UAVs,? Goffinon told SMi?s Helicopter Technology Central Europe conference in Prague. ?
he US Federal Aviation
瑼dministration has published
a final list of 10 special conditions
for certificating the airworthiness
of Boeing?s unique folding wingtips for the 777X family.
Boeing designed the 777-9 and
-8 with longer, carbonfibre wings
to improve on the aerodynamic
efficiency of the 777-300ER. To
keep the new family compatible
with airport gates and runways, it
has added a hinge mechanism
that allows the wingtip to fold
upward shortly after landing.
Boeing must prove that the
power to the folding wingtips is
isolated in flight, so they cannot
rotate upward due to a hardware
or software malfunction. Multiple alerts must be provided to
flightcrew if they are not properly
secured before take-off, and they
must be safe in horizontal gusts
up to 65kt (120km/h) from any
direction and in any position, the
FAA says. ?
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 9
THIS WEEK
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network and fleet information, sign up at:
flightglobal.com/dashboard
DEVELOPMENT STEPHEN TRIMBLE SEATTLE
Mitsubishi shifts focus to MRJ70 as
it targets seat of scope clause flaw
Regional jet programme gets back on track after schedule slips and management reform
B
from a certification and entry-into-service milestone originally
scheduled for 2014.
There is no doubt competition
in the regional jet segment is hotting up: Airbus plans to finalise a
deal with Bombardier to take
control of the CSeries programme by mid-year and, Boeing is in advanced discussions
with Embraer and the Brazilian
government on a ?potential combination? with the S鉶 Jos� dos
Campos-based airframer.
TOUGH COMPETITION
While the MRJ90 does not compete directly with the currently
Bombardier CS100, the negotiations in Brasilia could see the
Japanese regional jet forced to go
head-to-head with Boeing.
Bellamy acknowledges the possibility, but insists it is not Mitsubishi?s focus at that moment.
?I think it?s an excellent longterm question. For now, from
where we stand, we have to
focus on making the best product, and what will happen in the
future will become apparent,?
Bellamy says.
?For me and the team that
works for me, our focus is not
worrying too much about the ex-
ternals, keeping the focus on delivering this aircraft on time.
That?s really all we can do and is
in our control at this time.?
That internal focus has led to
a thorough schedule overhaul
over the last 17 months, followed by a sweeping internal
re-organisation and a new emphasis placed on the smallest
variant of the family, the MRJ70.
The announced delay in January 2017 exposed flaws with the
design of the MRJ?s wiring and
avionics systems, but it was not
the only problem. The MRJ90 is
designed with a maximum takeoff
weight
of
39,600kg
(87,300lb), or slightly over the
scope clause-imposed limit of
39,000kg for US regional carriers. That means SkyWest Airlines and Trans States Holdings,
which combined account for
70% of the 213 firm orders for
the MRJ90, have no place for the
next-generation 76-seater in
their fleets.
But within the last several
weeks, Mitsubishi has decided to
open negotiations to convert SkyWest and Trans States? respective
orders for 100 and 50 MRJ90s to
the 69-seat MRJ70, Bellamy says.
Both carriers have contracts with
options to allow that conversion,
he adds.
?The MRJ70 is the product for
the United States market,? Bellamy says, adding, ?and it?s going
to be a killer product, we think.?
DOWNSIZING
Mitsubishi Aircraft
eyond the walls of Mitsubishi
Aircraft?s offices in Nagoya
and Seattle, a steady stream of
ominous events have followed
what executives on the MRJ programme describe as that ?dark,
dark day? on 23 January 2017,
when the company was forced to
announce a fifth delay for the entry-into-service date of the
MRJ90.
Over the proceeding 17
months, the first example of the
MRJ?s most significant competitor ? the Embraer E-Jet E2 family
? has been delivered to an operator, US airlines have become
even less likely to gain the scope
clause relief that once defined
the marketing plan for the
MRJ90 and, finally, Airbus and
Boeing have started pursuing
partnerships with Mitsubishi?s
competitors in the regional jet
market.
Despite all of those events, the
mood in Mitsubishi?s offices on
the southern outskirts of Seattle
feels light. Alex Bellamy, the
MRJ programme manager installed two years ago, does not
seem defensive or concerned
about the company?s position in
the market, even though the
MRJ90 remains two years away
Recent flight-test results have validated Mitsubishi Aircraft goal of introducing the MRJ90 from 2020
10 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
Indeed, the MRJ70 shares all of
the same technology ? Pratt &
Whitney PW1200G geared turbofan engines, fly-by-wire flight
controls and an advanced wing
design ? with the MRJ90. It suffers only from a fuselage which
is 1.4m (4.6ft) shorter than the
88-seat version.
Seat layouts are where the
MRJ70 fails to meet US standards. Mitsubishi advertises the
jet with 76 seats in a single-class,
31in-pitch layout. US carriers,
however, usually favour operating with 76 seats in two classes.
The airframer?s two-class configuration boasts a total of 69 seats:
nine in business class with a
36in pitch, and 60 in economy
class with a 30in pitch.
In a future regional market
without scope clause relief, the
MRJ70 is likely to compete with
two 76-seat products with a twoflightglobal.com
THIS WEEK
Rethink required
for Iran fleet
renewal
Air Transport P12
comply with certification requirements, so Bellamy called
in a team of engineering auditors from Seattle-based firm AeroTec. Three months later, Mitsubishi announced a two-year
delay for entry-into-service, to
redesign the wiring and the location of critical avionics systems.
Meanwhile, Bellamy re-organised the MRJ?s management
structure. In 2017, this was divided into functional areas, such
as engineering, supply chain and
customer service. The team has
since re-organised into 20 integrated product teams, with each
team leader given responsibility
for all aspects of their assignment.
Current 88-seat
model exceeds US
weight limitations
?We have to be a little
aggressive in our
targeting because the
market is the market?
Alex Bellamy
MRJ programme manager,
Mitsubishi Aircraft
class layout: the original E1 version of the E175 and the Bombardier CRJ900. With newer
engines and other technology
advances, Mitsubishi?s MRJ70
should be more fuel efficient in
absolute terms, but it may have
fewer seats, potentially eroding
any advantage on the cost per
available seat mile compared
with the Embraer and Bombardier alternatives.
Aware of that competitive
problem, Bellamy is already
working on a solution. An engineering team within Mitsubishi
is analysing options for increasing the number of seats within
the MRJ70, without changing the
exterior dimensions or sacrificing performance.
Meanwhile, the company is
looking at re-assigning producflightglobal.com
tion slots from the MRJ90 in the
short-term to start building more
flight-test vehicles for the
MRJ70, Bellamy says. The first
two MRJ70 test aircraft ? the
eighth and ninth MRJs to enter
final assembly ? are in the Nagoya factory. The goal now is to be
ready to deliver the first MRJ70
to a customer by the end of 2021,
or only one year after the entryinto-service of the MRJ90.
?We have to be a little aggressive in our targeting because the
market is the market,? Bellamy
says.
Mitsubishi approved the accelerated plan for the MRJ70 within
the last few weeks, he adds. But
the go-ahead decision only came
after the MRJ90 team got back on
track after several years of missed
deadlines, design mistakes and
flaws in the Japanese-run certification process.
Bellamy joined Mitsubishi to
manage the MRJ programme in
March 2016 immediately after
helping to guide the CSeries aircraft family through type certification. By October 2016, it had
become clear that certain aspects of the MRJ design did not
?We?ve taken an organisation
where maybe the problem was engineering and it had to go across to
supply chain and then it had to go
to customer support and maybe
that took a significant period of
time to transition through the hierarchy ? the ups and the downs
? to the point now where we?ve
got a 24h turn-around on a problem,? Bellamy says.
As the new structure started
hitting deadlines and solving
problems faster, confidence grew
in the MRJ programme?s ability to
rapidly introduce the MRJ70 a
year after certificating the MRJ90.
?We?re hitting the numbers,?
Bellamy says. ?They feel comfortable now that we?re able to
move on to the next thing.?
The first MRJ90 flight-test air-
Operator
SkyWest Airlines
On order
100
Trans States Holdings
50
J-Air
32
All Nippon Airways
15
Aerolease International
10
Air Mandalay
Total
6
213
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
craft have checked off all of the
most extreme areas of the flight
envelope, including speed, altitude and operating temperature
on the ground.
Meanwhile, the last stages of
final assembly will soon begin on
Aircraft 10, which will be the first
MRJ90 to be built with the new
avionics and wiring design. The
new wiring bundles supplied by
Lat閏o鑢e Interconnection Systems had arrived on the receiving
dock at the Nagoya factory by
mid-May, Bellamy says.
Aircraft 10 will be used to validate certification test points related to wiring and avionics systems, including high intensity
radiated field testing, environmental control systems and
human factors.
In the final stages of certification, it will be joined with a
completed Aircraft 7, which will
be devoted to functional and reliability testing.
?We?ve now got a really solid
basis for a schedule,? Bellamy
says. ?The good news for me is
we?re still tracking to 2020.? ?
AirTeamImages
Mitsubishi Aircraft
TRANSITION PHASE
Mitsubishi Aircraft MRJ90
firm order backlog
All Nippon Airways accounts for 15 of the programme?s 213 orders
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 11
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OPERATIONS DAVID KAMINSKI-MORROW LONDON & STEPHEN TRIMBLE WASHINGTON DC
Rethink required for Iran fleet renewal
Re-imposition of US sanctions could prompt airlines to consider Russian alternatives, with Airbus and Boeing ruled out
ranian carriers will again be
considering just how to renew
an airliner fleet with a collective
average age of more than 20
years, after the door closed on securing newly ordered aircraft.
US President Donald Trump?s
withdrawal from the multinational agreement on the Iranian nuclear programme ? the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action ? puts on
the back burner those deals Iran
had struck for its carriers to take
Airbus and ATR aircraft, and tentative moves to order and lease
Boeing types, as well as restricting
alternative options.
While there is a 10% US content threshold at which sanctions
kick in, since 2011, US companies have been prohibited from
selling anything to Iran Air.
That was lifted while the
璶uclear accord was in place, but
will revert back from 6 August,
meaning that essentially any
aircraft that has a certificated
�
component sourced from a US
company cannot be delivered to
Iran Air ? unless it is a foreign
OEM that has secured supplemental type certification to replace US-sourced components
for ones of foreign origin. In
practice, that is extremely hard
to achieve.
Iran Air?s chief executive has
stressed that the carrier will continue to face problems with modernising its fleet and securing sufficient spare parts as a result of the
US government?s withdrawal from
the nuclear agreement.
COMPETITIVE PRESSURE
Although possessing the youngest fleet in the country ? with an
average age of 21.5 years, against
23.5 years for the nation?s whole
commercial
inventory
?
璅arzaneh Sharafbafi says the carrier must continue to use older
aircraft, in spite of delays, adding that it faces unequal competition and that solving the airline?s problems requires an
updated fleet.
Airbus
I
Deliveries, including an A321, have helped lower fleet?s average age
The carrier has received three
Airbus aircraft ? including one
directly ordered ? since signing a
fleet-renewal agreement with the
airframer, plus eight ATR turboprops from a 20-unit order, but
none of the Boeing jets it had previously agreed to take.
Iran Air had ordered 98 Airbus
jets, encompassing 28 A330-900s
? some 13% of the entire A330neo backlog ? as well as 16 A3501000s, eight A330-200s, and 46
single-aisles. Its sister carrier Iran
Airtour had also tentatively committed to receive 45 A320neos.
With Boeing, Iran Air had
made moves to take 80 aircraft,
including 15 777s and 15 777Xs,
and to lease 37 more 737s. Deliveries were originally slated to
start in 2017, but were deferred to
this year. In addition, Iran Aseman Airlines had tentatively
signed for 30 737 Max-family jets.
Given the noises from the
Trump campaign about reversing
president Barack Obama?s Iranian deal, Airbus and Boeing both
appeared cautious on the prospects of delivering these aircraft
in the near term.
In contrast to its European
rival, Boeing no longer has any of
those aircraft in its backlog.
12 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
Any accident would be
more likely to affect
civilians... and could
simply hand a
propaganda victory to
the Tehran government
The sanctions on US-sourced
content delivered to Iran Air also
restrict further new aircraft options. Iran had previously been a
customer for Soviet-built aircraft
and also became a manufacturer
of licence-built Antonov An-140s,
an aircraft known as the IrAn-140,
at the HESA plant in Isfahan.
The Russian government?s strategy, particularly since the Ukrainian conflict, to reduce dependence
on foreign suppliers, including Antonov, could rekindle Iranian interest in certain Russian types.
SUKHOI POSITIONING
Sukhoi is pitching a ?Russified?
Superjet 100, designated the
璖SJ100R, manufactured with a
higher share of domestically
sourced content. Iran Airtour
and Iran Aseman have signed
preliminary deals to acquire SS-
J100Rs for delivery from 2020.
But several crucial development
decisions have yet to be made,
not least of which concerns the
choice of engine.
A troublesome issue for both
sides in the sanctions dispute is
Iranian air safety. While the US
government views air transport as
crucial to Iran?s economic development, and therefore a strong sanctions candidate, it also recognises
that passenger safety could be jeopardised if the Iranian government
opts to keep an ageing fleet operating with scarce resources.
Any accident would be more
likely to affect civilians ? not the
intended target of sanctions ? and
could simply hand a propaganda
victory to the Tehran government.
Previous US administrations
had approved the export of spares
and documentation to keep GE
Aviation-powered Airbus jets operational. The US government
pointed out, in 2006, that it was
committed to promoting international flight standards and ensuring the safety of all passengers, including Iranian citizens.
European safety authorities
took action in 2011 to blacklist
part of the Iranian fleet over concerns centred on maintenance and
airworthiness oversight.
Iran?s Civil Aviation Organization has worked to improve its
safety-management efforts, to the
point where the European restrictions on Iran Air have been partially eased, but a complete ban
remains in place for Iran Aseman.
Some Iranian operators have
previously managed to obtain
relatively modern aircraft from
third parties, but such efforts
have sometimes involved convoluted leasing structures ? as demonstrated when Mahan Air attempted to acquire several
ex-United Airlines 747-400s
through entities in Armenia and
the United Arab Emirates. ?
Additional reporting by
Graham Dunn
flightglobal.com
DELIVERY LEWIS HARPER LONDON
E195s will be
withdrawn from
operation
Air Italy flies the flag as
it reveals ex-Qatar twin
A
737s and 767s still bearing Meridiana?s livery. Those aircraft are
being phased out as the leased
A330s and 737-8s enter the fleet.
Flight Fleets Analyzer shows
Qatar Airways has 11 A330-200s
in service.
The A330s will eventually be
replaced in Air Italy?s fleet by 7878s, beginning in May 2019, the
carrier revealed earlier this year.
Fleets Analyzer shows Qatar Airways has 30 787-8s in service and
30 -9s on order.
Air Italy is aiming to expand its
fleet to 30 787-8s by 2022, alongside at least 20 Max jets. ?
STRATEGY DAVID KAMINSKI-MORROW LONDON
Flybe favours Q400 over big jets
U
Air Italy
ir Italy has unveiled the second aircraft to feature its
new livery: an Airbus A330-200.
In March, the carrier announced
that it would be adding five A330200s and three Boeing 737 Max 8s
to its fleet as the summer season
commenced. It took delivery of its
first 737-8 on 11 May.
The aircraft are being leased
from 49% shareholder Qatar Airways as the ex-Meridiana embarks
on a rapid short- and long-haul
expansion programme with Milan
Malpensa as its focus airport.
Flights under the Air Italy name
began on 1 March, operated with
Older aircraft will be replaced by jets sourced from 49% shareholder
K regional carrier Flybe is
still planning to take delivery
of four Embraer 175s next year,
but is not intending a replacement of its Bombardier Q400 turboprop fleet.
It states that as the Q400 fleet is
?relatively young?, with an average age of around 10 years, the
twin-turboprops will be retained
and their service lives extended if
it proves economical.
?This will save considerable
capital expenditure over the next
few years, by avoiding the requirement to acquire new aircraft,? it states.
Flybe had been assessing its
fleet requirements and analysing
regional aircraft options, but it
has decided that the Q400 is the
?best core aircraft? for its requirements.
?It will therefore remain as the
backbone of the Flybe fleet,? it
says. ?Flybe is not planning any
additional new aircraft orders for
the foreseeable future.?
Flybe says the Q400 is fuel-efficient and fast, and its performance is ?close? to that of jet aircraft over the carrier?s typical
short sectors.
It is aiming to reduce its overall fleet to around 70 aircraft by
early 2020, from the peak of 85
reached a year ago.
Flybe intends to withdraw all
nine of its E195s, but will retain
some E175s for specific routes. ?
FINANCIAL DAVID KAMINSKI-MORROW LONDON
Airbus claiming compliance with WTO
Amendments to launch investment funding for A380 and A350 form part of package to settle dispute initiated by USA
A
irbus and its four primary European partner countries
have agreed to amend A380 and
A350 launch investment loans as
part of compliance measures
linked to the World Trade Organization dispute over large civil aircraft financing.
The WTO had recently stated
that Airbus and the EU had
achieved compliance regarding
the ?vast majority? of support,
according to the airframer, but
that ?some? remaining obligations required ?minor adjustments?.
?Those have now been addressed by the EU,? says Airbus.
?The terms of these amendments
? like the terms of the original
flightglobal.com
[launch investment] contracts
themselves ? remain confidential,
but they are aligned with current
market conditions.?
In a compliance communication to the WTO?s Dispute Settlement Body, the EU says it has
?taken appropriate steps? to bring
measures ?fully into conformity?
with WTO obligations, and to
comply with the body?s rulings.
It states that the measures include agreements between Airbus
and the French, German, Spanish
and UK governments to ?achieve
prospective consistency with a
contemporaneous market benchmark? through amendments to
member state financing for the
A380 programme.
?In any event, the benefit from
the French, German, Spanish and
UK A380 [state financing] subsidies has been withdrawn through
amortisation or otherwise, achieving the withdrawal of these subsidies,? it adds.
Similar measures have been
undertaken with respect to launch
funding for the A350.
Airbus has concluded an
amendment to the German A350
state financing, through development bank KfW, and says that this
means the German subsidy ?is
withdrawn? as a result, and the
benefit of the loan has been ?substantially amortised?.
The communication to the
WTO adds that Airbus has ?re-
paid in full? amounts outstanding
under UK A350 financing agreements.
Benefits from French and Spanish loans have also ?substantially
been withdrawn? as a result of
amortisation, or otherwise, it says.
?We are confident that we have
now achieved full compliance in
the [large civil aircraft financing]
case as a clear demonstration of
the will to ensure a fair trade environment respecting international
trade agreements,? says Airbus
general counsel John Harrison.
?Airbus is looking forward to
seeing the same constructive attitude and actions of the [USA] and
Boeing in the upcoming [counterclaim] case.? ?
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 13
Lex Rayton/ImageBroker/REX/Shutterstock
AIR TRANSPORT
WestJet Swoops to
conquer Canada
Air Transport P14
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FLEET DAVID KAMINSKI-MORROW LONDON
A321 capacity hike needs exit strategy
Redesigned interior with up to 24 additional seats has been approved in principle by EASA, subject to location of doors
Airbus wants a regulatory exemption to maximise passenger numbers
The airframer had been seeking authorisation to make the
A321neo eligible, under US federal regulations, to carry a maximum of 235 passengers if fitted
with a derated mid-cabin exit.
Derating the mid-cabin door,
located just aft of the wing, from a
Type C exit to a Type III can allow
more flexibility in the interior
?A separate approval is needed
for the installation of the individual customised cabin layout and
the necessary cabin adaptations
up to 244 seats,? it adds.
Airbus confirmed the maximum 244-seat capacity for the jet
in a communication to the US
Department of Transportation in
April.
WestJet
irbus?s reconfigured A321neo
has been cleared to operate
with up to 244 passengers, depending on the precise exit layout.
The reconfigured twinjet ?
which features a modified fuselage with repositioned exits ? enables the maximum seating
capacity to reach 244, according
to the European Aviation Safety
Agency.
EASA states that this requires
the aircraft to have ?overperforming? Type C exits in the forward
and aft fuselage and two Type III
overwing exits, plus a Type C
door for the repositioned midcabin exit.
These modifications allow the
maximum seating to be increased
from 220, the limit in the original
A321, to 244 in the reconfigured
A321neo.
But EASA states that the
change only defines a ?virtual envelope? and ?does not constitute
an authorisation? for installing
the additional seats.
Airbus
A
DEVELOPMENT STEPHEN TRIMBLE WASHINGTON DC
Boeing ramps up robots
as it pushes automation
A
BRANDING
WestJet Swoops to conquer Canada
WestJet has unveiled a Boeing 737-800 painted in the livery of
the company?s soon-to-launch ultra-low-cost subsidiary Swoop.
The Calgary-based airline had previously released only digitallyrendered images of Swoop-branded aircraft. The carrier is set to
take to the skies for the first time on 20 June, with initial flights
from Hamilton, a city southwest of Toronto, to both Abbotsford,
British Columbia and Halifax, Nova Scotia.
14 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
layout, says Airbus. But it also reduces the maximum permitted
capacity of the aircraft.
Derating the exit to Type III
would normally limit this capacity to just 200 seats ? a combined
credit of 65 each for the forward
and aft Type C doors, plus 70 for
the overwing exits.
Airbus says it is seeking a regulatory exemption to increase
the passenger limitation for all
the Type III exits from 70 to 105
passengers.
This 35-seat increase would
take the A321neo?s permitted capacity to 235 passengers.
Airbus states that its request is
justified by the results of intermediate-scale evacuation tests, performed to assess the various configurations of the A321neo.
The company says its evacuation analysis demonstrates that ?
for all possible configurations,
including the derated door ? an
?overall safety margin? of around
29% is achieved. ?
key piece of Boeing?s heavily
automated build-up system
for the 777X is ramping up production in Everett, Washington.
Wing sets for the first four 777X
aircraft, including one static test
article and three flight-test vehicles, have been loaded so far into a
newly designed horizontal build
line, Boeing tells FlightGlobal.
The first flight-test aircraft is
expected to make its maiden sortie next year. The first video of
the new build-up method in operation appeared on Boeing?s
Twitter account on 16 May.
It shows an automated guide
vehicle loading one half of the
71.8m (235ft)-length of the 777-9?s
unfolded wingspan into a horizontal tool. A fixed-bed robot beneath the tool drilled holes into
the bottom panel of the composite
wing. An overhead, robotic gantry
drilled and sealed fasteners on the
upper surface at the same time.
Boeing still builds the metallic
wings for the 777-300ER in the Seattle area, but it is the company?s
first brush with building large
composite wings since it was a
supplier to Northrop Grumman
on the B-2A bomber programme.
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
supplies the composite wings for
the 787 family, but Boeing took
that work in-house for the 777X
programme. ?
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NEWS FOCUS
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STRATEGY GREG WALDRON SINGAPORE
SIA tightens ties with sluggish Silkair
Regional unit?s 737 fleet will receive extensive cabin upgrade, aligning offering with that of sister carrier Singapore Airlines
IA Group is to bring together its
Singapore Airlines and Silkair
units as part of a transformation effort that will also see the latter?s
fleet of Boeing 737s receive a multimillion-dollar cabin upgrade.
The full merger of the two operations will take place after
2020, to allow time for the interior modifications to take place.
?The programme will comprise investment of more than
S$100 million [$74 million] to
upgrade the wholly owned subsidiary?s cabins with new lie-flat
seats in business class, and the
installation of seat-back in-flight
entertainment systems in both
business class and economy
class,? says SIA.
?This will ensure closer product and service consistency
across the SIA Group?s full-service network.?
The move reflects an effort by
the Star Alliance carrier to
streamline its portfolio of brands,
and follows the absorption of
low-cost carrier Tigerair by Scoot
in late 2016.
In addition, it is indicative of
the sluggish performance of
Silkair: in the year ended 31
March, the carrier was the only
SIA Group subsidiary, including
the cargo and maintenance arms,
to record a fall in operating profit,
down to S$43 million from
S$101 million a year earlier.
IDENTITY CRISIS
Group chief executive Goh Choon
Phong, announcing the change on
18 May, blamed the drop on the
carrier discounting in order to
boost load factors. Although convinced of Silkair?s viability, he
concedes that on certain routes,
low-cost Scoot is the better vehicle for SIA Group to deploy.
Part of Silkair?s problem is that it
is neither fish nor fowl: while it is a
full-service carrier offering a product that is superior to that of the region?s low-cost rivals, it is not in
the same league as SIA, although it
has a similarly high cost structure.
AirTeamImages
S
Boeing narrowbodies are to be fitted with lie-flat business-class seats and in-flight entertainment systems
For example, while it
� rovides meals, free drinks, and
p
limited in-flight entertainment
streamed through passengers?
own devices, it offers no seatback IFE. This is despite the fact
that most of its capacity and network growth in the last five
years has been to medium-haul
destinations.
According to SRS Analyzer,
powered by FlightGlobal Schedules, in May 2018 Silkair will operate 139,000 seats to destinations over 1,620nm (3,000km)
away, an increase of 136%
against the 59,000 seats it offered
in May 2013.
Growth on shorter routes was a
much more modest 19% over the
same period.
?We first want to
focus on getting
Silkair?s service and
product offering
closer to that of
Singapore Airlines?
Goh Choon Phong
Chief executive, SIA Group
16 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
Goh suggests that the decision
to move forward with the merger
has as much to do with technology as with the business challenges facing Silkair.
?One reason why we have decided at this point in time to [conduct the merger] is because we?re
seeing the availability of lie-flat
seats that are much more space
efficient. Therefore, we are able
to make use of that availability to
do the configuration without having to compromise too much in
the reduction of seat numbers.?
He believes there is sufficient
demand from premium passengers to warrant a high-quality
business-class experience on
Silkair flights.
Cabin upgrades to Silkair?s fleet
will commence in 2020, reflecting
the lead times required by seat suppliers and the necessary certification processes. The merger will be
concluded after modifications to a
?sufficient?, although unspecified,
number of Silkair jets.
?We first want to focus on getting Silkair?s service and product
offering closer to that of SIA,? says
Goh. ?That involves retrofitting
with new business-class products,
which is the lie-flat we mentioned
and also putting in place the inflight entertainment systems. That
takes time, particularly the availability of seats for narrowbody lieflat products.?
He adds that all of Silkair?s jets
will have lie-flat seats, as opposed to operating a sub-fleet
with an unique interior.
NARROWBODY SWITCH
Flight Fleets Analyzer shows that
Silkair operates 34 aircraft, comprising five 737 Max 8s, 17 737800s, three A319s, and nine
A320s, although the Airbus jets
are being phased out in favour of
Boeing narrowbodies. Silkair has
outstanding orders for 32 737-8s.
Both the 737-8s and -800s have
12 business-class seats, with capacity in the economy cabin for 144
and 150 passengers, respectively.
Silkair was launched in 1989
under the Tradewinds brand,
serving regional holiday destinations. It was renamed Silkair in
1992, and now serves 49 cities in
16 countries. SIA has not operated narrowbody airliners since it
removed a quartet of 757-200s
from its fleet in 1990. ?
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Split Scimitar� Winglets in China.
Hainan Airlines will be China?s first airline to operate the world?s most advanced technology winglet
on Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft. Split Scimitar� Winglets will cut Hainan?s annual fuel burn by
over 140,000 liters per aircraft, and reduce CO2 emissions by more than 350 tonnes per aircraft per
year. This is the new way to fly. Learn more at aviationpartnersboeing.com. The future is on the wing?.
DEFENCE
For insight and analysis of the latest
developments in the defence sector, visit:
flightglobal.com/defence
TECHNOLOGY GARRETT REIM LOS ANGELES
R
aytheon Space and Airborne
Systems is to upgrade the radars and infrared targeting equipment aboard the US Navy?s Boeing F/A-18 and E/A-18G fleets
under a contract from the US
Naval Air Warfare Center.
The navy has selected the company to upgrade the types? various
APG-65 and -73 mechanically
scanned and APG-79 active electronically scanned array radars,
plus the Advanced Targeting Forward-Looking Infrared (ATFLIR)
sensor. It also will improve the
strike aircraft?s electronic countermeasures and other tactical sensor
capabilities under the deal.
The pod-housed ATFLIR sensor can passively locate and designate targets by picking up their
heat signatures. The system has
a range of more than 40nm
(74km), and can function up to
altitudes above 50,000ft.
Separately, Boeing has been
awarded $41.3 million to acquire long-lead materials to support the production of 24 more
F/A-18-series aircraft which
were added to the USN?s fiscal
year 2018 budget, with deliveries to conclude by March 2022.
The airframer also has received almost $9.5 million to advance its work on adding the
US Navy
US Navy Hornets to get Raytheon sensor boost
F/A-18C?s radar will be enhanced under major modernisation deal
Tactical Targeting Network Technology to the F/A-18E/F Super
Hornet and EA-18G Growler
platforms.
Flight Fleets Analyzer shows
the USN has 978 F/A-18-series
aircraft, including 153 electronic
warfare-roled EA-18Gs. ?
COVER STORY STEPHEN TRIMBLE WASHINGTON DC
Adir strikes mark F-35?s combat debut
Lockheed Martin-produced fighter attacked targets for first time during recent Israeli action, air force chief reveals
sraeli air force F-35I Adirs have
participated in two air strikes in
the Middle East, making the nation?s recently-deployed, Lockheed Martin-made fighters the first
in the global fleet to see combat.
?The Adir aircraft are already
operational and flying combat
missions. In fact, we have performed the first operational F-35
strike in the world,? Israeli air
force commander Maj Gen Amikam Norkin announced on 22
May. ?We attacked twice in the
Middle East using the F-35,? he
told a convention of air force
commanders in Tel Aviv.
Israel?s air force declared its
140 Sqn initially ready for combat operations last December,
after having received F-35Is at
Nevatim air base.
Lockheed delivered the first
two F-35Is in late 2016 as part of
the eighth lot of low-rate initial
production, with the conventional take-off and landing aircraft featuring Block 3i-standard
software. Israel?s subsequent examples were delivered during
Lot 9 in the Block 3F standard,
allowing a broader set of weap-
ons options and a wider flight
envelope. Flight Fleets Analyzer
records the service as now having nine examples in use.
Israel also will integrate locallydeveloped weapons, including
Rafael?s Spice precision-guided
bomb. In February, the US Department of Defense awarded Lockheed a $147 million contract to
integrate Israeli-made weapons
with the F-35I, without disclosing
further details.
The F-35?s combat debut in Israeli hands recalls the early years
of the Boeing F-15 programme. In
1979, Israeli air force pilot Moshe
Marom-Melnik executed the first
air-to-air kill with the type, shooting down a Syrian air force
Mikoyan MiG-21.
Norkin?s disclosure about the
F-35I?s first offensive use came
during a convention held partly
to mark the 70th anniversary of
his service?s creation. This also
included a speech on fifth-generation fighter capabilities delivered by Lockheed chief executive
Marillyn Hewson.
Israeli air force
I
Nine examples of stealthy type are operational at Nevatim air base
18 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
In addition to confirming the
F-35I?s strike debut, Norkin also
detailed a significant operation
staged over the past several weeks
to counter what the air force
claims were attacks mounted by
Iran?s Quds special forces unit
from the T-4 air base in Syria,
about 135nm (250km) from Israel.
?They attempted to attack us
using a UAV [unmanned air vehicle] which infiltrated Israel a
number of months ago. After this
event, we saw that they continued to store munitions in this
base, including aerial defence capabilities which we attacked,?
Norkin says, referring to longrange missiles and rockets.
?The Iranians fired 32 rockets
towards Israel. We intercepted
four of them, while the rest fell
outside of Israel?s territory,? Norkin says. ?Afterwards, we attacked dozens of Iranian targets
in Syria.? More than 100 surfaceto-air missiles (SAM) were
launched against Israeli aircraft
by Syrian air defence units during this action, and he notes: ?In
response, we destroyed their
SAM batteries.? ?
flightglobal.com
DEFENCE
Venom and Romeo
near end of the line
Defence P20
FIGHTERS CRAIG HOYLE LONDON
Gripen E testing heads for new phase
First prototype readied to carry external stores, as airframer keeps target of launching production deliveries in 2019
aab?s Gripen E is set to start its
next major period of testing,
as the Swedish manufacturer
says its new-generation fighter remains on course for delivery from
next year.
?We are preparing for the next
phase of flight trials ? that is, external stores,? says Jonas Hjelm,
head of Saab?s aeronautics business unit. Since the first prototype?s flight debut in June 2017,
the programme has continued on
target, he says, with recent milestones including achieving supersonic flight.
?We are on track. We will deliver according to the contracts
that we have,? Hjelm confirms.
Saab has current orders from the
Swedish and Brazilian air forces
for a combined 96 E/F-model
fighters, with both expected to receive their first examples before
the end of 2019.
Speaking during the company?s annual Gripen seminar in
Stockholm on 16 May, Hjelm declined to reveal when the programme?s remaining two proto-
Stefan Kalm/Saab
S
New model will enter service with Swedish and Brazilian air forces
types will join the test fleet, but
says: ?They will fly in the not too
far future.?
Meanwhile, head of Gripen
marketing and sales Richard Smith
lists more than a dozen nations as
potential additional future operators for the C/D and E/F models.
?The success of Gripen in Brazil has really helped strengthen
the brand globally,? he says. ?We
see short- and near-term win possibilities for the Gripen C-series,
and are seeing increased market
interest for the E-series.?
Prospective buyers for the C/Dversion include Botswana, which
has shown interest in the type as a
replacement for its Northrop F-5s.
Despite a recent setback in Europe
when Croatia opted to acquire secondhand Lockheed Martin F-16s
refurbished in Israel, Smith says
Bulgaria and Slovakia remain firm
targets for Gripen deals via the
Swedish government. Indonesia
and the Philippines are also seen
as opportunities, although Jakarta
recently selected the Sukhoi
Su-30 for part of its fighter renewal process.
Saab is also eyeing ?Red Air?
requirements in the UK and the
USA with its proposed Aggressor
variant. Smith says the UK Royal
Air Force could require between
six and 10 such aircraft to support combat training, while the
US opportunity is for ?30,000h
per year across several bases?.
Gripen E/F prospects include
Austria, Canada, Colombia, Finland, India and Switzerland.
?The business model and industrial packages we?ve put forward in Brazil would be a perfect
template for India,? Smith
claims. Saab will respond to a request for information from New
Delhi seeking more than 100 light
fighters ?just before the summer
period?, he adds.
Saab recently completed an
upgrade activity to bring the
Czech air force?s Gripen C/Ds to
its latest MS20 operating standard, and Hjelm says Hungary is
?next in line? for the work. ?
PROCUREMENT CRAIG HOYLE LONDON
W
ith two of its new aircraft
fleets already complete, the
fixed-wing element of the UK
Military Flying Training System
programme recently passed two
major milestones, according to a
key service provider.
The first student pilots to fly
the Grob Aircraft G120TP Prefect
commenced training on the type
in April at the Royal Air Force?s
Barkston Heath base in Lincolnshire, Elbit Systems UK/KBR
joint venture Affinity says. The
company has acquired and supports the German-built elementary trainer for the UK Ministry of
Defence, with all 23 examples
now received as replacements for
the previous G115E Tutor T1.
flightglobal.com
One week after the Prefect?s
debut ab initio sortie, Affinity engineers supported the first flight
of the Embraer Phenom 100 in
UK military service from RAF
Cranwell, Lincolnshire. Five of
the adapted light business jets ?
the last of which arrived in the
UK in late January ? will deliver
tri-service pilot instruction for
multi-engine types including the
RAF?s Airbus Defence & Space
A400M tactical transport and future Boeing P-8 maritime patrol
aircraft. The Brazilian-built type
will replace the use of Beechcraft
King Air 200s, following the
completion of instructor training.
?These flights mark significant
steps in the progress of UKM-
Crown Copyright
Milestones speed UK?s training fleet transition
Student pilots have begun flying Affinity-sourced G120TP Prefect
FTS,? says Affinity managing director Iain Chalmers. The company has also received four of an
eventual 10 Beechcraft T-6C
basic trainers under its overall
38-unit fixed-wing service contract, signed in February 2016.
Replacing Shorts Tucano T1s,
the Texan T1s are based at RAF
Valley in Anglesey, Wales. ?
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 19
DEFENCE
For insight and analysis of the latest
developments in the defence sector, visit:
flightglobal.com/defence
ROTORCRAFT GARRETT REIM PHOENIX
Venom and Romeo near end of the line
With production backlogs waning, Bell advances major capability upgrade, while Sikorsky pursues further MH-60 sales
ell and Sikorsky are facing the
near-term completion of two
production programmes for the
US Marine Corps and US Navy in
the absence of follow-on orders
or commitments from international customers.
Deliveries of the Bell UH-1Y
utility helicopter are scheduled to
conclude for the USMC by the
end of this year, although the company will continue producing the
Venom?s sister aircraft ? the attackroled AH-1Z ? until 2022.
David Walsh, Bell?s UH-1 programme manager, says the company is focused on improving the
Marines? UH-1Y and AH-1Z fleets
with upgraded electronic warfare
systems, a Link 16 datalink, increased electrical power and
US Navy
B
US Marine Corps will complete its UH-1Y utility fleet late this year
structural improvements which
will enable them to carry new
weapons, including a future joint
air-to-ground missile and Raytheon?s AIM-9X Sidewinder air-to-air
missile.
Meanwhile, production of
Sikorsky?s MH-60 Seahawk is set
to conclude in the next 18 months,
as the USN completes its fleet. The
service is set to receive the last of
280 MH-60Rs in its programme of
record this June, followed by another eight next year, as additions
to its fiscal year 2018 budget. The
Royal Saudi Navy is also expected
to receive 10 of the type in July.
?The production line is still active. It is coming towards the end
of its life,? says USN programme
manager Capt Craig Grubb.
Australia and Denmark currently fly the ?Romeo?, but while
other potential customers have
expressed interest, they have yet
to make commitments. ?If you
want to buy MH-60s, this is the
time to act,? Grubb notes.
The USN also operates 275 Smodel MH-60s, which were delivered until 2016. The last of its
older MH-60Hs will be retired
from use early next year. ?
COMPETITION DOMINIC PERRY LONDON
A
irbus Helicopters will pitch
its H135 for the US Navy?s
forthcoming trainer replacement
programme. To be offered via US
subsidiary Airbus Helicopters
Inc, the light-twin would replace
the service?s current fleet of Bell
TH-57 Sea Rangers.
If selected, the H135s would be
assembled in Columbus, Mississippi, where the airframer builds
UH-72A Lakotas for the US Army.
Flight Fleets Analyzer records
the USN as currently operating 113
of the Bell 206-based, single-engined TH-57. The navy has not yet
specified whether it wants a singleor twin-engined replacement.
However, Airbus Helicopters be-
lieves, based on a request for information published last July, that it
will call for an aircraft certificated
for single-pilot instrument flight
rules operations, which would favour a twin-engined model.
Airbus Helicopters points out
that its H135 already holds the
relevant approval from the US
Federal Aviation Administration,
but should the USN insist on a
single-engined solution it has
other options, the most likely of
which is the H125: already built
in Columbus.
The H135 will face competition from the single-engined Bell
407GXi and Leonardo Helicopters TH-119; a military version of
Airbus Helicopters
H135 powers up for Sea Ranger replacement bid
Twin-engined type would be assembled in Columbus, Mississippi
the AW119Kx.
According to its mid-2017 request, the USN will acquire 105
aircraft for the replacement effort. A draft request for propos-
Download the 2018
Wo r l d A i r Fo r c e s R e p o r t
als is anticipated ?in the autumn?, with a full contest to be
launched around one year later.
Deliveries would start in the
2020-2021 period. ?
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Ruag 2017 strip ad.indd 1
20 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
06/12/2017 11:25
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BUSINESS AVIATION
Keep up to date with business
aviation news and analysis at:
flightglobal.com/bizav
STRATEGY MURDO MORRISON LONDON
First outing for Elbit-owned Universal
US and Israeli teams begin effort to integrate avionics product lines, technologies, marketing and distribution channels
niversal Avionics is preparing for its annual trip to the
European Business Aviation
Convention and Exhibition ? the
largest industry showcase outside the USA. But this year?s
event ? to he held from 29-31
May in Geneva, Switzerland ?
will mark the family company?s
international debut under its
new parentage.
In April, Israeli defence and security specialist Elbit Systems
completed the acquisition of the
Arizona-based avionics house,
founded by the late Hubert Naimer in 1981. Although Universal
will retain its identity, location,
and management team as an Elbit
subsidiary, teams from both companies have begun to work on
ways of integrating product lines,
technologies, and marketing and
distribution channels.
PERFECT MATCH
For Paul DeHerrera, Universal
Avionics chief executive, the
marriage is a ?perfect match?,
bringing together Elbit?s portfolio
of ?head-up? avionics products ?
most of them in defence applications ? and Universal?s ?headdown? range, which is almost
exclusively pitched at business
and general aviation. Elbit ? a
$3.38 billion turnover group with
a history of expanding through
acquisition ? is also very strong
in the original equipment segment. Universal, by contrast, has
focused on the aftermarket.
?It?s very exciting because our
team stays together,? says DeHerrera. ?We will stick to the
commercial market, but we will
pick up some of the products that
Elbit offers ? such as HUDs
[head-up displays] ? and offer
them through our channels. In
turn, they have incredible channels to market via the OEMs,
which will open new paths to us.
Although we have a number of
original equipment deals with
Bombardier, Sikorsky and Honda
Aircraft, among others, we are
Universal Avionics
U
Combining systems will increase competition in flightdeck market
stronger in retrofit. That will continue to be our forte, but no-one
will complain if it gives us a
stronger position with OEMs.?
Elbit is one of the aerospace industry?s most prolific investors in
research and development, allocating 9% of its revenues to the
area. After just a few weeks of
being under new ownership, DeHerrera admits talk about launching products is premature. ?We?re
still drinking from the firehose,?
he says. However, he maintains
that the acquisition will give Universal access to funding for projects. ?They are very much an
R&D company and that philosophy will continue. There is more
to come and you can expect some
announcements soon on the R&D
side,? he says.
One of the reasons Elbit was attracted to Universal was the fact
that there was ?almost no overlap
in product?, says DeHerrera.
?Nothing collided. All the products we manufacture are ones
they wanted in their portfolio.?
As moves begin to merge Elbit?s
?incredible head-up technologies? with Universal?s headdown solutions, he says, one of
the priorities will be to ?get the
symbology between the two
groups of products synchronised? in order that they can be
jointly operated and marketed.
22 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
Other aspects of the US business also appealed to the Israelis
? who already had a Texas-based
subsidiary, Elbit Systems of
America, marketing a range of
cockpit avionics to the commercial sector, alongside more conventional air- and land-based defence products. ?We align
culturally,? says DeHerrera. ?We
had been chatting to them for
some time, and right away we
saw that the teams were going to
work very well together. They are
an innovative and motivated
group of individuals, like us.?
CONSOLIDATION TRAIL
The past decade has seen consolidation in avionics. Universal?s
absorption by Elbit follows the
still-to-be finalised merger of
Rockwell Collins with United
Technologies? UTC Aerospace
Systems division, while Esterline?s purchase of CMC ? one of
three other main players ? took
place in 2007. Elbit has been a serial acquirer since 2000, adding a
number of Israeli and foreign
businesses; a quarter of its workforce is overseas. Its latest target
is state-owned Israel Military Industries, with which it is ?in discussions?. A takeover would see
Elbit overtake Israel Aerospace
Industries as the country?s biggest
aerospace and defence company.
A focus for Universal at
EBACE will remain its push to
retrofit avionics equipment to
older aircraft, to make them compatible with US NextGen and the
EU?s Single European Sky regulatory mandates coming into force
in the next few years. The company says it saw a 40% growth
between the first and last quarters
of last year in upgrades of flight
management systems (FMS) to
meet satellite-based augmentation system requirements. Although the US regulations are
more urgent, DeHerrera says Europe?s congested airways mean
the region is always going to be a
prime market for on-board air
traffic management tools.
The divestment of their shares
to Elbit ends the involvement of
the Naimer family in Universal,
which moved to its present
home near Tucson International
airport from California in 1988.
The business began when Hubert Naimer came up with the
concept of a ?master navigation
system?, which led to the development of what Universal
claims was the world?s first
FMS. Since then, the company
has come up with a series of innovations, including a multisensor navigation system, an
80min cockpit voice recorder,
and a terrain awareness and
warning system with ?look
ahead? capabilities.
Aside from its FMS and flagship InSight flight display system, Universal?s products range
from its attitude heading reference system to its Vision-1 synthetic vision capability, and
cover 50 aircraft types, from the
Pilatus PC-12 single-engined turboprop to the Boeing 747 widebody airliner. With Elbit?s headup portfolio added, Universal
says ?the marketplace can expect
new commercial avionics technology offerings as two product
lines combine to create some of
the most forward-thinking technology in cockpit avionics?. ?
flightglobal.com
BUSINESS AVIATION
Power is pressing
Commercial engines P25
REBRAND KATE SARSFIELD LONDON
U
K charter operator Interflight
has been restructured and renamed, to create what its owner
calls ?a leading global brand in
boutique business aircraft charter
and management?.
Interflight was acquired by
London-headquartered private
equity firm Mountfitchet in late
2016, with a view to restyling the
40-year-old, London Biggin Hill
airport-based operation, now
known as Voluxis. ?We have
spent a lot of time creating the
new culture and strategy for
Voluxis, and now we are ready to
deliver,? says Sam Heather, commercial director for the relaunched company.
He notes that Mountfitchet spotted a gap in the market for a highend, bespoke service for business
aircraft owners and end-users.
This niche, Heather argues,
has been created following the re-
cent wave of consolidation in the
charter and management industry. ?This has produced a few
very large companies with big
global fleets; but they lack the
personal touch,? he says.
Heather attributes this slide in
service levels to the industry?s
drive to reduce costs for customers
and operators. ?To keep our service
as personal and hands on as possible, we won?t manage any more
than 10 aircraft at a time,? he says.
Voluxis owns two Hawker
800-series business jets. It will
eventually replace the midsize
pair with managed aircraft ? the
first example, an 800XP, is scheduled to arrive soon, says Heather.
Voluxis is now eyeing expansion, and plans to develop the
brand in Asia, Europe and the
Middle East, through a mix of organic growth and targeted acquisitions, says Heather. ?
Pilatus Aircraft
Interflight offers service
to wow VIPs as Voluxis
Airframer will supply 23 aircraft this year from an order backlog of 84
DELIVERY KATE SARSFIELD LONDON
Pilatus hands over third PC-24
P
turboprop ? to other European
travellers through a new venture
called Flying Club 24. The company is scheduled for launch in
the coming weeks.
The PC-24 secured European
and US type certification in December 2017, and entered service
with US fractional ownership operator PlaneSense in April. A second example was delivered to Pilatus?s US dealership Western
Aviation in March.
Pilatus plans to deliver 23 PC24s in 2018 from an order backlog of 84 aircraft. ?
ilatus Aircraft has delivered
the third PC-24 business jet to
Swiss businessman, pilot and
long-time PC-12 customer Peter
Brabeck-Letmathe.
The superlight twin ? serial
number 104, carrying the registration HB-VSE ? was handed
over on 23 May during a dedicated event at Pilatus?s headquarters
in Stans.
Brabeck-Letmathe will use the
PC-24 for corporate and private
travel. He will also make the
eight-seater available ? along
with his PC-12 single-engined
COMMITMENT STEPHEN TRIMBLE WASHINGTON DC
Zunum fired up with launch customer
Alternative power gets boost as JetSuite signs for up to 100 developmental six- to 12-seat hybrid electric commuters
remium US charter firm JetSuite has committed to become
the launch operator for a Boeingbacked, hybrid-electric aircraft
now in development by Seattlebased start-up Zunum Aero.
Irvine, California-based JetSuite
signed a memorandum of understanding on 21 May for up to 100
of the yet-to-be-named six- to 12seat commuter aircraft, which is
scheduled for US Federal Aviation Administration certification
and service entry in 2022.
The launch commitment demonstrates growing demand from
commercial operators for alternatives to conventional, gas-powered aircraft on short routes. JetSuite
provides
on-demand
charter with its fleet of Embraer
Phenom 100, 300 and Legacy 650
business jets. It also offers a
flightglobal.com
Zunum Aero
P
Deliveries to US charter company are scheduled to begin in 2022
scheduled public charter service,
known as JetSuiteX. This connects private airport terminals
across California and N
璭vada
with a fleet of 30-seat Embraer
ERJ-135LR regional jets.
In addition to Boeing?s financial
support, Zunum is also backed by
JetBlue Technology Ventures ? a
subsidiary of US carrier JetBlue,
which is a stakeholder in JetSuite.
The company plans to begin
flight tests in mid-2019 with a flying testbed, says chief executive
Ashish Kumar. The twin-engined
testbed will be converted to a hy-
brid-electric powerplant gradually, beginning with one electric
motor replacing one of the aircraft?s gas-powered engines. Both
engines will eventually be replaced with electric motors powered by electricity generated by a
1,450shp (1,080kW)-class turboshaft engine.
Bothell,
Washington-headquartered Zunum plans to select
a supplier for the turbogenerator
in the third quarter, Kumar says,
with GE Aviation, Honeywell,
Rolls-Royce and Safran Aircraft
Engines among the candidates.
By the early 2020s, the company plans to start producing a certificated aircraft with a 1MWclass propulsion system, putting
it in roughly the same size class as
the Cessna Denali turboprop. ?
See Feature P25
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 23
See the
future
from here.
Keeping passengers connected
and comfortable
A great flight experience starts when people are connected
and comfortable.
That?s why we?re helping airlines keep passengers connected
throughout their journeys, simply and seamlessly, via global
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� 2018 Rockwell Collins. All rights reserved.
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
POWER IS
PRESSING
CONTENTS
26Electric charge New technology
29Rolls-Royce Troubled Trent
32Sales Who propels the big two?
34Next big thing GE9X advances
Messe Berlin
An old engineering maxim says that the way to design a
really good aircraft is to start with the engine ? guidance
that seems particularly apt today, given the link between a
new generation of powerplants and a step-change in fuel
economy. But modern turbofans might be pushing their
design limits ? and what comes next poses new challenges
Rolls-Royce has a solid position with Airbus, as this Trent XWB-powered A350 illustrates; its only toe-hold at Boeing is on the 787
flightglobal.com
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 25
Airbus
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
Airbus E-FanX demonstrator will be a BAe 146 adapted to fly on three ordinary gas turbines and one nacelle-mounted electric fan
Current affairs
A future in which even large airliners are powered by hybrid and eventually all-electric
propulsion systems is becoming an industry expectation; Rolls-Royce details its vision
STEPHEN TRIMBLE LAS VEGAS
I
n Rolls-Royce?s vision of aviation?s future,
the entire market will shift to electric
power for propulsion in ways that will
disrupt business models and even the design of gas turbine engines. Says Rolls-Royce
Electrical global head Mike Mekhiche: ?It?s
not a matter of if. It?s a matter of when. The
entire aerospace business is going to be electrified.?
R-R has given itself a front-row seat as the
transformation unfolds. When the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
launched the (now cancelled) Aurora Flight
Sciences XV-24A Lightning Strike programme, R-R supplied the AE1107 gas turbine used to power the electric motors for the
turboelectric, unmanned air system. When
Airbus launched the E-FanX demonstrator
last year to replace one of the four turbofan
engines on a BAe 146 with a 2MW-propulsion system, R-R signed up to adapt the Sie26 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
mens-supplied electric motor to the existing
nacelle and supply a turbine engine to function as an electric power generator.
BRIDGE TO THE FUTURE
The company plans to continue to be an
active participant as the technology develops.
In a recent presentation, Mekhiche showed
an image of a new technology called the
Embedded Electric Starter Generator (E2SG).
Such a technology presents a bridging step
between today?s technology and an electric
future. Using an Adour engine demonstrator,
an R-R team installed a power-dense E2SG
into the inhospitable core of a jet engine, converting the shaft power directly into electric
power. By removing the need for a bleed-air
offtake from the compressor to an accessory
gearbox, installing the E2SG in a future
engine is another step in the electrification of
current aircraft systems, Mekhiche says.
?We?re looking at a variety of architectures
and systems solutions,? he says. ?We?re look-
ing into critical technologies: motors and batteries and most importantly the control system that allows us to optimise the power flow
between the engine and the loads. The [E2SG]
is one important programme. But it is not the
only one.?
R-R?s vision of the future is one that it largely shares with its peers. GE Aviation has already revealed details of an aggressive push
to develop new megawatt-class motors and
electrical systems for future military and commercial aircraft. Pratt & Whitney has also disclosed a similar effort, including a demonstration of a large electric motor driven by a
turbofan engine. Honeywell had signed up to
supply the 1MW-class electric motor for the
XV-24A, which was to be integrated with the
R-R turboshaft engine to power that aircraft.
R-R has not yet released similar details of
in-house demonstrations of megawatt-class
electric motors and integrated hybrid-electric
propulsion systems, but the company?s vision
for the technology seems consistent with a
flightglobal.com
large investment in research and development. In addition to electrifying current aircraft power systems, Mekhiche sees three
new classes of electric-powered air vehicles
for transportation.
First, a new class of on-demand mobility
platforms will provide intra-urban transports
for one to four passengers seeking to avoid
road traffic congestion. Aurora has pledged to
divert the XV-24A?s distributed electric propulsion system to this emerging market, with
a goal of fielding a commercial product as
soon as 2023.
A second category in the market is
20-40-passenger commuter aircraft with relatively short ranges, Mekhiche says. ?The opportunity there is to actually take away some
of the business jet or regional jet market. It is
very possible and plausible that an electrified
platform offers a much more attractive value
proposition than, say, a business jet or regional jet,? he says.
Finally, the large transport market is also a
candidate for electrification, at least on large
short-range trips with hybrid-electric propulsion systems.
INTEGRATED SYSTEMS
Urban transport vehicles like CityAirbus are the likely first application for breakthrough
ket, with small electric motors providing
back-up power in short bursts during, for
example, a situation with an engine failure.
The next stage of electrification is coming
soon, as suggested by Airbus?s plan to fly the
E-FanX demonstrator in 2020. It uses a turboelectric propulsion system, with a gas turbine
generating electricity for electric motors that
provide the thrust. ?Your propulsion and
your engine are now connected only by ca-
bles. They are not connected to mechanical
structures,? Mekhiche says.
A key limitation of a turboelectric system
is the absence of an integrated battery for energy storage, he adds. Pushing beyond a turboelectric system with integrated batteries
opens new paths to improving overall fuel
efficiency.
?We?re looking at what electrification
[means] to the engine design,? Mekhiche says. ??
Airbus
In the largest category, the transition will be
more gradual, but in many ways has already
started. By introducing new technologies
such as the E2SG, R-R can make today?s gaspowered aircraft produce electricity more efficiently, which allows designers to convert
more onboard systems to electric power.
Another upgrade exists in the rotorcraft mar-
Airbus
ELECTRIC PROPULSION
Airbus/Rolls-Royce e-Thrust hybrid concept combines gas turbine power generation and backup batteries with electric fans for thrust
flightglobal.com
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 27
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
?? ?How does the engine design change because it is now going to be part of an electric
powerplant? That is extremely relevant? to
understanding our value stream and how we
operate going forward in this electrified market. When we started doing electrification of
cars and heavy-duty vehicles, we realised a
lot of benefits. But actually, it was not until
we had engines that were designed to be optimised for an electric propulsion system that
we were able to realise the full capability of
that type of system.?
In what is called a parallel hybrid architecture, R-R envisions packaging a gas turbine
and batteries to deliver thrust to an electric
motor. By augmenting electric power with
batteries during take-off and step climbs, the
propulsion supplier is able to reduce the maximum thrust rating for the gas turbine without
sacrificing performance, he says.
?There?s an entire paradigm shift around
what the engine does and when does it do it
and how that can be realised,? Mekhiche
says. ?
STRATEGY STEPHEN TRIMBLE CHICAGO
European electric systems expertise makes transatlantic journey for Siemens
Anton and Botti were both amateur pilots filled
with dread about the future of gas-powered
aviation. As emission regulations become
more strict over the next four decades, Anton
could envisage a day when it would no longer
be possible to fly conventional aircraft on regional routes.
Current CFM56?s 5:1
power-to-weight ratio is
Siemens? benchmark
Boeing
SPARK OF AN IDEA
Since its founding 170 years ago, German conglomerate Siemens has built a global industrial
empire, making electric power components for
cars, hospitals and power stations. It has gained
a toehold in the aerospace industry as a provider of product lifecycle management (PLM)
software for aircraft designers and automated
systems for aircraft assemblers.
Now, Siemens has found a way to enter the
aviation market as a tier one supplier, leveraging
its decades-old expertise in electric power systems in an industry on the verge of a major transformation in propulsion system technology.
It began with a chance encounter between a
Siemens and Airbus executive in 2008. A decade later, Siemens has opened a US facility in
Waco, Texas, dedicated to introducing innovators in the US market to a potential new partner in several key systems for an
electric-powered aircraft.
?What we really wanted to do here in the
USA is stand up a team. We need to be close to
innovators. If you?re not in the US aviation market, you?re not really in the market, so this team
was stood up to be extension of the European
28 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
team,? says Teri Hamlin, Siemens? vice-president
of electric and hybrid-electric propulsion.
The Waco-based team, which is co-located
with Texas State Technical College, is focused on
aircraft at the lower end of the power scale.
These include unmanned air vehicles for the defence market, auxiliary power systems for large
commercial aircraft and an emerging class of
electric-powered urban air taxis, Hamlin says:
?We?re on some projects right now that should
be announced real soon ? hopefully, by this summer.?
The US operation is building on a decade-long
pursuit by their colleagues in Europe of a new role
for Siemens in the aviation supply chain. As the
market electrifies, Siemens is attempting to take a
position now occupied by the likes of United
Technologies? UTC Aerospace Systems,
Honeywell and GE Aviation?s electric power systems division.
Siemens? quest to obtain this role began in
2008 during a chance encounter between
Siemens executive Frank Anton and then-Airbus
chief technology officer Jean Botti at a Siemens?
in-house innovation day. According to Siemens,
For Siemens, the only possible solution to the
problem called for electrifying aircraft propulsion systems. It seemed an impractical vision at
the time, given the state of electrical power
technology. At that time, the only electric motors on the market were used for terrestrial applications, lacking the aviation industry?s
demand for the lightest possible weight. A conventional electric motor produces about 1kW
for every pound of weight, resulting in a roughly
1:1 power-to-weight ratio. By comparison, a
CFM International CFM56-7B has a power-toweight ratio above 5:1.
As Siemens set out to conquer this problem,
it drew on its industrial digitalisation strategy.
The company?s PLM software allows designers
to create a virtual copy of a physical product,
using simulation tools and computational analysis to make rapid improvements.
The result of that approach led to the design
of a new 260kW motor for the aviation market,
boasting a 5:1 power-to-weight ratio. That improvement was possible because of advances
in the efficiency of the motor?s power cycle. It
was also enhanced by Siemens? use of its PLM
software suite to make certain components
substantially lighter. A bearing shield on the
front of the motor normally weighs 11.3kg
(25lb), but that figure was reduced to 4kg.
?Siemens is not intending to become an aircraft OEM. We have no intention to move into
that space,? Hamlin says. ?We?re focusing on
what we?re good at and that is the electric propulsion and the electrification of complex systems, including motors, generators, power and
signal distribution, inverters and complete endto-end drive trains of these electric components.
This is where Siemens shines. We have decades
and decades, 100-plus years of experience in
complex electrical systems. We?re coming at this
market from that level of expertise.? ?
flightglobal.com
TRENT 1000
High stakes
blade game
For Rolls-Royce, designing and delivering modifications
to resolve Trent 1000 reliability problems are a drain on
engineering resources, cash and customer confidence
MICHAEL GUBISCH LONDON
W
hat starts as a trickle can end
up a torrent: when, in 2016,
Rolls-Royce first announced a
durability issue with blades in
the Trent 1000?s intermediate-pressure turbine (IPT), there was no indication that the
modification programme would grow in
scope and complexity, causing significant
disruption for some Boeing 787 operators.
Airlines had to park Dreamliners as engines
required unscheduled maintenance to replace
IPT blades, and aircraft could not be returned
to service amid a shortage of available spare
Trent 1000s ? some carriers had to lease addi-
tional capacity. It became clear that on certain
Trent 1000s the durability issues also extended
to the high-pressure turbine (HPT) and intermediate-pressure compressor (IPC).
The costs are already mounting: R-R disclosed in March that in 2017 it incurred a
charge of �7 million ($311 million) related
to addressing technical issues on Trent
1000s and the Trent 900s powering Airbus
A380s. And the UK engine maker said that
this year, the upgrade programme?s annual
cash impact would ?broadly double? from
last year?s �0 million, before dipping in
2019 as work drops off.
However, that was before the revelation in
April of ?additional disruption? ? and higher
costs ? from further inspections required to
address IPC blade durability issues on Trent
1000 Package C engines.
Of course, previous engine programmes ?
of both R-R and other manufacturers ? have
required updates to address premature part
deterioration, particularly in the hot section.
And R-R says it is ?not uncommon for longterm engine programmes to experience technical issues during their life?.
??
Rolls-Royce
Trent 1000 modifications have disrupted
operations for multiple 787 customers
flightglobal.com
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 29
AirTeamImages
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
ANA grounded some of its 787s in 2016 due to corrosion-related part failures, prompting redesign of intermediate-pressure turbine blades
??
Teal Group vice-president analysis
Richard Aboulafia, however, considers the
Trent 1000 modification effort to be ?somewhat worse than normal?.
ENGINEERING RESOURCES
Aboulafia wonders whether R-R?s issues with
the Trent 1000 ? and Pratt & Whitney?s problems with its PW1000G-series geared turbofan ? might be a result of having ?greater ambitions than resources?.
The technical challenges and required engineering effort to develop more efficient engines have hugely increased from previous
generations of equipment. More broadly,
Aboulafia thinks the Trent 1000 problems
show that ?we are on the very limits of
squeezing performance improvement out of
existing turbine architectures? and that highly engineered parts come with a ?certain set
of vulnerabilities?.
Especially on Airbus and Boeing?s latest
aircraft programmes ? the A320neo, A330neo, 737 Max and 777X ? fuel-efficiency gains
have been mainly, if not entirely, achieved
through new engine technology. As a result,
the airframers have redistributed much of
the research and development effort, and
therefore risk, for new programmes to the engine manufacturers; at the same time, Airbus
and Boeing have put engine suppliers under
pricing pressure and driven production to
record levels.
?The ability to add resources at the engine
companies was constrained at exactly the moment when so much was expected of them,?
Aboulafia says.
Boeing 787 chief engineer Bob Whittington
revealed in January that ?all? operators of
Trent 1000-powered Dreamliners were affected by ?some of the wear-out issues in the
Rolls-Royce engine?, which entered service
in 2011.
30 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
The initial IPT blade replacement
� rogramme for the Trent 1000 was disclosed
p
after All Nippon Airways had t璭mporarily
grounded some of its 787s in 2016 as a result
of premature, corrosion-related part failures.
R-R redesigned the IPT blade and introduced it on the latest version of the Trent
1000, the 1000 TEN, and on the Trent 7000
derivative that powers the A330neo. The new
part is being retrofitted to earlier Trent 1000s
and, says R-R, should resolve the durability
issue. But the modification programme nevertheless caused a wave of shop visits as some
engines required urgent blade replacement.
There has been inevitable disruption for
operators: Air New Zealand temporarily
grounded several Dreamliners after experiencing in-flight failures on two of its 787-9s in
December 2017. The carrier resorted to wetleasing aircraft to support its schedule.
Virgin Atlantic in January disclosed plans
to add four A330s to its fleet and return to
service a stored A340-600 in a bid to
璱mprove the ?resilience? of its operation ?in
light of an industry-wide shortage of Trent
1000 engines?.
The IPC blade issue was first disclosed
after an engine failure aboard a Scoot 787-9 in
late 2016. Singapore?s Transport Safety Investigation Bureau determined that the failure
was caused by an IPC blade having broken off
? probably as a result of material fatigue ? and
linked two further shutdown events on Scoot
787-9s last year to the same issue.
R-R says the cracking problem applies to
the Trent 1000?s Package C configuration and
that neither the TEN nor the Package B version is affected. The manufacturer is in the
process of preparing redesigned blades for the
IPC ? and for the HPT where erosion is an
issue on existing blades.
The new parts are scheduled to become
available by year-end and will be retrofitted to
affected engines. R-R believes that the modification effort can be completed during
planned rather than unscheduled shop visits.
Whether that retrofit programme will
cover certain TEN engines is not entirely
clear. R-R says Trent 1000 TEN compressors
?are of different designs to the Package C?,
and that ?a new standard? HPT blade is installed on the TEN.
However, the manufacturer does not rule
out retrofitting a new IPC and the latest HPT
blades to the TEN. ?We will continue to positively confirm that none of the issues we are
experiencing on the Trent 1000 Package C engines will apply to the Trent 1000 TEN,? the
manufacturer says.
And earlier this year, R-R said it was ?possible that a population of early Trent 1000
TEN and Trent 7000 engines may benefit from
proactive maintenance to embody parts in
their first shop visit that weren?t available at
the point of production?.
ETOPS LIMITATIONS
Regulatory pressure is compounding the disruption for operators.
Following the April disclosure relating to
the IPC, the European Aviation Safety Agency
mandated that operators conduct repetitive
on-wing borescope inspections for all Package C engines, and introduced additional inspections for powerplants employed for extended twin-engine operations (ETOPS).
Meanwhile, the US Federal Aviation Administration more than halved the time that
Trent 1000 Package C-powered 787s can fly
under ETOPS regulations, to 140min, from a
previous maximum of 330min.
The US regulator says that if an engine were
to fail and the remaining powerplant already
had cracked IPC blades, the ?likelihood of the
remaining engine failing will further increase
before a diversion can be safely completed?.
flightglobal.com
Bloomberg Intelligence warns that the
ETOPS restriction could put R-R at a disadvantage on the 787 versus rival GE Aviation
and its GEnx engine.
In a research note, Bloomberg senior
璦erospace analyst George Ferguson asserts
that airlines will be required to ?adjust operations to remain closer to diversion
璦irports?, and that this ?reduces efficiency
and range, especially for extreme long-haul
operations, which are most appealing for
787 buyers?.
He describes the FAA directive as a ?blow?
to R-R and operators of Trent 1000 Package-Cpowered 787s, which will ?probably hurt
sales and value for the airplane?.
ANZ subsequently disclosed that it needed
to introduce refuelling stops on certain 787
flights as new weight restrictions apply to aircraft with affected engines. ANA and British
Airways, meanwhile, say the ETOPS changes
have had a minor effect on their operations.
Norwegian?s chief executive Bj鴕n Kjos acknowledged in April that the increased inspection regime will affect operations, but
says ?it is too early to predict the scale of the
issue?.
R-R?s effort to resolve the Trent 1000 problems and modify the in-service fleet ?takes an
awful lot of resources?, which will likely
have an impact on the company?s ability to
concentrate engineering staff on other projects like future engine development, Aboulafia suggests.
He says the development and implementation of modifications for issues on in-service
engines is ?fairly labour-intensive stuff?, while
the ramping-up of production for new engine
programmes, such as the Trent XWB for the
A350, is largely a matter of capital expenditure.
R-R says it had to redeploy ?engineering
resource? to tackle the Trent 1000 issues, but
notes: ?[We] expect this to be a temporary
measure.? The manufacturer says its devel-
Rolls-Royce
TRENT 1000
Engineers have been redeployed from other projects to help resolve Trent 1000 issues
opmental Advance and UltraFan engine programmes ?continue to progress as expected?.
Aboulafia does not believe that airlines and
aircraft manufacturers have lost faith in R-R
as a result of the Trent 1000 woes. Operators
which have ordered Trent 1000-powered
787s have not yet switched to the GEnx. But
he warns that the problems have not done R-R
?any favours? either and that ?a lot of it depends how quickly they can make it good?.
R-R concedes: ?Of course these issues must
affect perception of the Trent 1000 by customers.? But the engine maker says it is ?confident? that the family?s latest version and current production standard, the TEN, is a ?great
engine? for the 787.
Dreamliner is the only Boeing airliner
for which Rolls-Royce supplies engines
flightglobal.com
Rolls-Royce
SOLUTIONS
?It is our job to show them [airline and airframe customers] they can continue to trust in
us and the engine,? R-R says. It foresees that
solutions for the existing issues will be implemented throughout the fleet by 2022.
However, Aboulafia suggests the Trent
1000 problems could have an effect on future
orders: ?I think where it might hurt is where
people are looking at A350-1000 XWB versus
777X and... A330neo versus 787.? Both of the
Airbus programmes are exclusively powered
by R-R engines.
?The big issue here for Rolls-Royce is that
the 787 is their only connection with Boeing
right now,? says Aboulafia.
GE, P&W and R-R have all submitted engine proposals for Boeing?s proposed New
Mid-market Airplane (NMA), which could
enter service around 2025. If Boeing were to
launch the NMA programme without R-R on
board, it would leave the UK manufacturer
having almost the entirety of its large engine
business ? all in-production models except
the Trent 1000 ? tied to Airbus.
That is already the case today, as the Trent
700, 900, 7000 and XWB are exclusively employed on Airbus long-haul aircraft. But
Aboulafia thinks a further re-enforcement of
that alliance in the long-haul segment is a
?very risky concept? for R-R.
GE is, likewise, the sole engine supplier to
Boeing?s 777 and 747-8 programmes. However, the US engine maker also has, via its
CFM International joint venture with Safran,
a strong position in the high-volume narrowbody market. Since it withdrew from the International Aero Engines consortium with
P&W, Japanese Aero Engines and MTU, R-R
has no active participation in the single-aisle
segment.
R-R, for its part, argues that the prospect of
a potential selection as NMA engine supplier
is ?unrelated? to the Trent 1000 problems:
?We continue to invest in our future engine
programmes irrespective of this [Trent 1000]
challenge and will continue to evaluate any
opportunities to have our engines selected as
they come up.? ?
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 31
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
Powerbase
Boeing?s 777X family will use efficiency
gains from in-development GE9X
Engine options impact operating performance and airline
economics. We use data from Flight Fleets Analyzer to
detail the selection balance for Airbus and Boeing types
Airbus A320neo-family by engine manufacturer and region
2,000
1,500
1,000
Qatar Airways? A380 fleet is exclusively
driven by Engine Alliance GP7200s
500
0
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Latin America North America
Middle East
Africa
Unknown
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet and order backlog at 9 May 2018
CFM International
Pratt & Whitney
Unannounced
Boeing 787 by engine manufacturer and region
500
400
300
200
100
0
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
North America Latin America
Africa
Unknown
Delivered in March, 737 Max 8 is a great
Leap forward for Kazakh carrier SCAT
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet and order backlog at 9 May 2018
GE Aviation
Rolls-Royce
Boeing 787 by engine
manufacturer
Unannounced
Airbus A320neo-family by
engine manufacturer
33%
Total
39%
8%
29%
1,258
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet and order backlog at 9 May 2018
Rolls-Royce
5,003
32%
59%
GE Aviation
Total
Unannounced
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet and order backlog at 9 May 2018
CFM International
Pratt & Whitney
Unannounced
Xxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxx
746
413
99
1,936
1,465
1,602
32 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
flightglobal.com
FLEETS AND ORDERS
Airbus/Boeing order backlog by engine manufacturer
Airbus
Boeing
0
1,000
2,000
3,000
4,000
5,000
6,000
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer (May 2018)
CFM International
Pratt & Whitney
Rolls-Royce
GE Aviation
International Aero Engines
Unannounced
Airbus/Boeing in service fleet by engine manufacturer
Boeing
Airbus
Boeing
0
2,000
4,000
6,000
8,000
10,000
12,000
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet at 9 May 2018; Boeing data includes former MDC types
CFM International
Pratt & Whitney
Rolls-Royce
GE Aviation
International Aero Engines
Engine Alliance
Airbus
R Gnecco/Airbus
PW1100G is one of two options available
to customers for re-engined A320neo
flightglobal.com
Boeing
Paul Gordon/Boeing
Rolls-Royce has secured orders to equip
one-third of global Dreamliner fleet
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 33
GE Aviation
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
Installing the powerplant on inboard pylon of 747-400 flying testbed?s left wing ? carried out in record time ? was a major engineering feat
Thrusting
onwards
With its giant GE9X a critical element of the 777X update to
Boeing?s popular big twin, GE Aviation is powering ahead
with testing and production of its most advanced engine
STEPHEN TRIMBLE WASHINGTON DC
I
n the second week of May, the crew of an
Antonov An-124 operated by Russian cargo
airline Volga-Dnepr got to work on the
flightline at Victorville, California, loading
a pallet measuring 3.96m (13ft) wide and
7.77m long into the cargo bay of the chartered
widebody freighter for emergency shipment
to Columbus, Ohio. The size of the payload
and the route were dead give-aways: GE Aviation?s first GE9X flight-test engine was coming
home to Evendale, Ohio.
In early May, GE wrapped up the first phase
34 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
of a two-stage flight-test effort on the 105,000lbthrust (467kN) GE9X. Phase 1 included 18
flights on board the company?s Victorville-based
Boeing 747-400 flying testbed, GE9X programme manager Ted Ingling tells FlightGlobal.
GE is on a tight schedule. Boeing needs the
GE9X ready to begin flight testing for certification on board the first 777-9 in 2019, allowing
the aircraft to enter service in 2020. So the new
powerplant for the 777-9 needed to return to
Evendale to prepare for phase 2, which is
scheduled to begin in the third quarter.
?It will be months of work to bring the engine down and back up again. The majority of
the activities are around the instrumentation
that we have on this vehicle. There?s over 1,600
pieces of discrete information through sensors
that get bundled onto this engine and routed
into the aircraft,? Ingling says.
?We want to preserve that instrumentation
for the missions that follow. As a result, what
would normally be a quick turn-around for
incorporation of the hardware changes takes
us much longer to bring the engine down and
back up and make sure all the instrumentation is working,? he adds.
GETTING STARTED
The first phase of flight-testing with the GE9X
kicked off on 13 March, with the engine designated as No. 4 within the programme lifting
off in Victorville. In nearly two months, the
747-400 flying testbed logged 110h overall
during the 18 flights. ?A portion [of the flight
tests are reserved] for check-out of the aircraft
and systems and the rest of it was dedicated to
achieving the objectives of the flight test mission,? Ingling says. Flight-test crews also explored the high-altitude envelope for the
GE9X, evaluating how its cruise performance
compared with ground test data.
?We are very encouraged about the engine.
All indications from fight test is that the enflightglobal.com
First phase of flight testing with the GE9X-105B was launched from Victorville in March
using the existing configuration. The redesigned lever arms for the variable stator vanes
will be installed as part of the tear-down prior
to the restart of flight tests in phase 2, Ingling
says.
SECOND FRONT
Meanwhile, ground testing is continuing at
GE?s test centre in Peebles, Ohio. GE delivered
the first engine to test (FETT) for the GE9X
programme in 2016. This features its most advanced engine core, with a compression ratio
of 27:1, versus 23:1 in the GE90-115B. The
GE9X is loaded with new technology. Its $42
million list price makes a set of two engines
on each 777X nearly equal to the advertised
cost of a 737-700. For that price, GE has promised that the engine will burn 10% less fuel
than the GE90 in flight and 5% less than a
Rolls-Royce Trent XWB-97 on a test stand.
Driven by concerns about moving too
quickly, GE afforded itself a 13-month win-
GE Aviation
gine is doing exactly what we want it to do
and we?re on track to meet our objectives on
performance,? Ingling says. ?The engine is really performing well and we couldn?t be happier with that.?
The engine is installed on the inboard station of the left wing of the 747-400, which was
itself an engineering challenge, he adds. ?We
put the engine on wing in record time and
with little drama. Boeing designed the pylon
for us? and how it attaches to the engine is
really the same as how it would do on the
777X, so Boeing?s been involved in our [flying
testbed] since the beginning. The installation
was really remarkably quiet and flawless. Engine and instrumentation systems came together perfectly.?
But the start of testing was delayed by more
than two months, after GE engineers made a
late discovery. Inside the compressor of the
GE9X are 11 stages of rotating blades, with
stationary vanes located in between each set
of spinning rotors. These stator vanes slow
down the airflow, thereby raising its pressure
as it moves upstream to the combustor. To optimise the pressure of the airflow in take-off
and cruise conditions, the engine?s computeroperated controls can adjust the position of
the stator vanes relative to the airflow.
Lever arms mounted externally on the engine case set the pitch of the vanes, but GE
discovered a problem last December. The mechanical design and materials used to build
the lever arms were correct, but the device
wore out faster than it had expected.
?We didn?t alter the material of the lever
arms or anything,? Ingling says. ?It was just
the design was not as robust as we needed it
to be. It didn?t affect the engine from a [specific fuel consumption] standpoint.?
It was too late to incorporate the new lever
arm design in the first GE9X flight-test engine,
so the first phase of flight tests began in March
GE Aviation
GE9X
An array of instrumentation captures performance information across 1,600 parameters
flightglobal.com
dow between delivering the FETT and the
second engine to test (SETT) with certification-ready hardware. Since entering ground
testing at Peebles 12 months ago, the SETT
has been joined by four more test engines.
?We?ve made some fantastic progress on
the certification programme,? Ingling says.
?We?re through a little more than 25% of all
required certification testing. Icing tests were
completed in the first quarter. We completed
all the crosswind testing, [as well as] inlet
compatibility, aero-mechanics of the fan and
booster, and aero-mechanics and thermal surveying of the high-pressure turbine.?
The GE9X actually represents an entire
family of engines. The 777-9 will be powered
by the version designated GE9X-105B, with
the numeral in the suffix representing the
105,000lb-thrust power rating. GE also plans
to develop a 102,000lb-thrust version of the
engine, along with another with a 93,000lbthrust output, according to a regulatory document filed with the US Federal Aviation Administration in November 2017. The reduced
ratings will likely power future variants of the
777X family, including the long-range 777-8
and a potential freighter version.
For now, however, GE is focused on getting
the GE9X engine certificated.
?We?re in the middle of building the very
first compliance engine in Durham, [North
Carolina]. The long-lead hardware on production engines are coming in,? Ingling says. ?So,
we?re ramping the production process using
the Durham facility. The development engines are built in Evendale. Compliance and
production [engines] will be assembled in
Durham and tested out of Peebles.
?We?re building the very first compliance
engine and we?re accumulating hardware up
to the third engine, so more than 50% of
hardware is accumulated depending on
�
which engine you?re looking at,? he adds. ?
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 35
STRAIGHT&LEVEL
From yuckspeak to tales of yore, send your offcuts to murdo.morrison@flightglobal.com
Reflight Airworks
C-47 makes its
passage to India
The Indian air force?s vintage
flight squadron has inducted a
restored Second World War-era
C-47 military transport, after a
six-year restoration effort in the
UK by Reflight Airworks.
The aircraft is an ex-RAF
example that entered service in
1944 and later operated in
civilian hands in the UK.
A military variant of the
Douglas DC-3 Dakota, C-47s
were operated by India?s air
force from the 1940s until 1988,
and were were instrumental in
newly independent India?s
defence of Srinagar in 1947-1948.
The service has plans to add
five aircraft to its vintage flight
fleet, which comprises three
aircraft at Hindan air base near
New Delhi. Future restoration
projects include a Spitfire Mk
VIII and possibly a Hindustan
Aeronautics Hindustan Trainer
2 (HT-2).
No-gateau area
The long-suffering souls who
staff airport security have a new
concern every 17 May ? in
Norway at least. National day
sees many adopt traditional
dress ? for women, the bunad.
Oslo airport operator Avinor
had advice for bunad-wearers:
brooches, buttons and jewellery
should go in hand luggage, but
knives must be checked in.
The disclosures made in the
Report of the Select
Committee on
National
Expenditure,
relative to the
waste of public money at
Loch Doon, amount to a
scandal of the first
magnitude.
Night flying
Transported from the past: the restored Dakota rolls out
of retirement ahead of the ceremony
And the famous bl鴗kake, as
much part of the celebrations as
the garb? ?Travellers cannot
bring cream cakes through
security, as cream is classified as
spreadable/liquid.? However:
?Cakes don?t travel well as
checked luggage either.?
But you can have your cake
and eat it. ?Previously,
passengers have shared cakes
they have been unable to bring
through security with other
passengers and employees. This
has lightened the atmosphere at
the security checkpoint.?
That can only be a good thing.
The write stuff
Ladd Company/Warner Bros/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock
They led... thousands followed
Loch Doon scandal
With his white suits, fedora
hats, and debonair manner, the
late New York journalist and
novelist Tom Wolfe was an
unlikely inspiration for
generations of pilots.
Yet The Right Stuff, his 1979
account of the aviators who took
part in the USA?s early test
flights on experimental highspeed aircraft and the Project
Mercury programme ? later
made into a film ? has been
avidly read by many who have
gone on to have a cockpit career.
Wolfe, an icon for many in the
scribbling trade too, conducted
extensive research and
interviews with pilots and their
families, capturing the warrior
spirit, mental and physical
36 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
Bright moonlight may,
when nature elects to
provide such
illumination,
reduce the
difference to
some extent, but even so
the pilot depends far more
upon what he can see and
hear inside his ?office? than
what he may be able to
discern beyond the Perspex
windows of the cockpit.
Apollo situation
attributes ? ?the right stuff? ? of
the pioneers who pushed the
boundaries of human
achievement in the skies.
Aero-knowledge
Valerio Francati has written a
very different tome for those
aspiring to a future in the
flightdeck. A simple ? without
being dumbed-down ? roadmap
for pilots preparing for
interviews, The Pilot?s Guide
contains a sample CV and
covering letter, glossary of terms
with 80 illustrations, tables of
formulae, and mental maths tips
for quick metric conversions.
The 204-page book is also
suitable for enthusiasts looking
to hone their aeronautical
knowledge, and is available on
Amazon and eBay.
Three sets of three-man
Apollo crews are training for
definite missions
and, for the first
time, they know
what rockets and
spacecraft they will ride. The
astronauts for the actual
lunar mission have yet to be
named, but their landing
sites on the surface of the
Moon have been selected.
Remote control
The UK Defence Research
Agency is testing a system
which could
ultimately put
the control of
airliners into the
control of air-traffic
controllers on the ground.
The DRA is working on the
man-machine interface
aspect of air-traffic
management by datalink.
100-YEAR ARCHIVE
Every issue of Flight
from 1909 onwards
can be viewed online at
flightglobal.com/archive
flightglobal.com
LETTERS
flight.international@flightglobal.com
The opinions on this page do not
necessarily represent those of the editor.
Letters without a full postal address supplied may not be published. Letters may
also be published on flightglobal.com
and must be no longer than 250 words.
A Rolls-Royce
of gambles
Regarding your article: ?R-R
breaks back of urgent checks on
787 engines? (Flight International, 8-14 May), the problems
with the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000
engine on the Boeing 787 will be
long-term and massively costly.
They are due to a fundamental
flaw in the basis of OEMs? understanding of the associated
operational risks.
In the 1980s and 1990s, R-R
instigated a policy to capture the
large engine maintenance,
璻epair and overhaul market.
They restricted authority to independent MROs that wished to
start this activity, thereby limiting competition and encouraging a monopoly.
Their next idea was to offer
full on-wing support for large-fan
engines, from shop visits to spare
engine cover, all supposedly
carefully monitored by ECM [engine condition monitoring].
This removed the risk from the
operator for day-to-day operations, but came at a cost dictated
by the OEM and removed any
opportunity for the operator to
reflect true engine operating
Siegfried Kuttig/REX/Shutterstock
We welcome your letters on any
aspect of the aerospace industry.
Please write to:
The Editor, Flight International,
Quadrant House, The Quadrant,
Sutton, Surrey, SM2 5AS, UK
Or email:
flight.international@flightglobal.com
Fresh ideas needed to raise public awareness over compliance
REGULATION
Reaching out to all drone fliers
Your special report on unmanned systems (Flight International,
24-30 April), shows the field is rife with new TLAs (three-letter
acronyms) ? UAV, UAS, CTT, CCD, ATC, UTM, TCL? and the
technologies behind them.
What is not apparent is how the increasingly top-down
璻egulatory framework will assess and influence the blithely
璾nknowing, or the wilfully anti-compliant drone flier.
Here in New Zealand, a major need for education has been
identified, so our regulator appears to be setting up for tighter
regulation and registration. And that worked for gun control,
right? Certainly the fresh ideas the final article alludes to should
include reaching out to all fliers and the public.
Allen Reynolds
Auckland, New Zealand
costs, influenced by the type of
operation and the value that
璦irline engineering departments
added. R-R bases all its charges
on removal rates of engines during the life cycle of the contract
with the operator.
If the operator removal rate
changes as a result of flight
hours or cycles, the OEM is
璦llowed to amend the contract.
In the case of the Trent 1000, the
engines need to be removed
璸rematurely because of hardware failures. There are insufficient reserves for the engine
shop visits or loan engine costs.
In the normal life cycle of an
engine, the first-run shop visit interval is always longer than the
subsequent ones; shortening the
shop visit intervals because of
hardware failures means that
until the end of the contract, the
OEM will always be out of pocket, as the removal rate on which
the contract is calculated ? and
on which spare engine and spare
parts provisioning is based ? is
corrupted. The operator delegating too much risk to the OEM is
long-term short-sightedness. An
operator?s accountant will rub
their hands with glee at the prospect of the OEM taking on all the
risk, but will quickly blame their
engineering/technical experts for
failures when the resultant spare
parts shortages occur, or aircraft
are grounded.
The gamble for the OEM was
fine if all went well, but we all
know that hardware failures do
happen with high-thrust engines.
Did the operators really understand the real risk to the operation? The OEM has even run out
of spare engines and spare parts
to support the removal
璸rogramme. The additional cost
of loss of extended twin-engine
operations must be staggering.
It appears that R-R management did not fully understand
the potential risks in providing
this kind of support. Can they
璦bsorb the staggering cost of this
failure? Or will the operators,
shareholders and staff pay the
璾ltimate price, whatever that
may turn out to be?
Don Landsborough
via email
Losing appeal
Regarding your comment: ?Fly
with us: please? (Flight International, 10-16 April) and subsequent letters by Peter Bishop
and Frank Kristensen (Flight International, 8-14 May), a lack of
candidate pilots may not be an
issue of a generational mind or
skill set, but rather the result of
commercial airline flying losing
its appeal.
Other than earning a living,
the attraction for those minded to
enjoy it is that of flying an
璦ircraft. Each time I read accident
reports and note the pilot?s
hours, I am left wondering how
many of those hours were spent
with hands on the controls, and
as a result, how prepared the
pilot was for the unexpected.
The industry has failed this
generation of pilots by making
modern airliners inhuman and
uninteresting in the questionable
name of safety and efficiency.
Richard Chandless
Cr阠hes-sur-Sa鬾e, France
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29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 37
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RECRUITMENT
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WORKING WEEK
WORK EXPERIENCE GEMMA DENDURENT
Matching talent with requirements
What is your educational
background and how did it help
you get where you are today?
During my studies for a degree in
strategic communications, I
learned how to actively listen to
what people are saying ? and also
hear what they may not specifically be saying, which is often
more telling. In terms of providing the right people for the right
roles this is an invaluable skill,
and one that I use on a daily basis.
What has your career path been?
After time spent working with a
large corporation, I was invited to
help start the US division of MSB
Global Resources. I was interested
in the MSB philosophy, which
seemed to empower employees
and embrace personnel, as if part
of the family. Having used their
resources for years, I feel so fortunate to be part of the development
of a company from the ground up,
yet have the backing of the parent
company, Sogeclair. It?s a really
great position to be in.
What does your typical working
week look like?
I don?t believe there is a typical
day when you are involved in a
new company, and I?ve quickly
learned that the day you plan for
yourself rarely happens. The underlying focus is to ensure that
MSB Global Resources is known
as the company that retains
highly qualified and experienced team members, that can
creatively solve staffing concerns
for aerospace companies all over
the USA. This means during a
single week I may participate in
executive meetings, make�
MSB Global Resources
As the operations director of rapidly expanding aerospace recruitment and contract placement business
MSB Global Resources, Gemma Dendurent solves staffing concerns for aerospace firms across the USA
Dendurent says growing skills shortages will need creative solutions
� perational decisions, source,
o
recruit and place engineers,
work on external HR-related
items with our staff, file for state
璴icences as we expand into
璬ifferent locations, as well as
make coffee for the team so we
can keep going with smiles on
our faces. There is nothing that I
璭xpect from the team that I
wouldn?t do myself.
What is the most challenging
part of your work?
The most challenging aspect of
my role is ensuring we remain
ahead of the curve with regards
to staffing shortages. A large
amount of my time is spent gathering trends information to anticipate and understand shortfalls
in the engineering market. The
real challenge is to find solutions
to bridge those gaps.
What valuable lessons have you
learned?
Early in my career I worked with
a flight-test centre, and was blessed with fantastic mentors who
taught me everything I needed to
know about hiring for every position ? from telemetry, avionics,
mechanical, project management
and flight-test engineers through
to pilots. It was intriguing to learn
how the functions combined to
ultimately support the safe flight
of experimental aircraft. I haven?t
forgotten that each role is part of a
network; that is important to remember.
What has been one of your more
challenging positions to fill?
For me every position is interesting and sometimes a seemingly
simple role may turn out to be the
most complex. It is our responsi-
bility to investigate and establish
what a company really needs. Recently we had the challenge of
finding a Japanese technical
translator/interpreter position for
one of our clients. Finding a candidate who can speak perfect
technical Japanese and translate
that into perfect technical English
is not easy, especially as we don?t
have a Japanese speaker on the
team. I was proud that we could
meet the needs of our clients by
thinking laterally.
What are the greatest challenges
facing aerospace recruitment?
I believe that companies are
going to have to get creative with
workforce solutions due to skills
shortages in the aerospace industry. MSB understands where
the gaps are, as we are finding
solutions for our clients on a regular basis. However, we anticipate that as the industry continues to grow at such a quick pace
there will continue to be a gap
between available experts and
the number of roles to be filled.
璅inding solutions to fill the
voids will need creative teams,
with 璭xcellent international networks. That?s what we?re aiming
to 璫reate with MSB Global Resources here in the USA. n
Looking for a job in aerospace?
Check out our listings online at
flightglobal.com/jobs
If you would like to feature in
Working Week, or you know
someone who does, email
your pitch to kate.sarsfield@
flightglobal.com
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PlaneCutaway.indd 1
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09/02/2017 12:28
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 43
More uptime,
less downtime.
More ?ights, more revenue. That?s great for business.
Utilization de?ned.
www.cfmaeroengines.com
CFM International is a 50/50 joint company between GE and Safran Aircraft Engines
eplace the midsize
pair with managed aircraft ? the
first example, an 800XP, is scheduled to arrive soon, says Heather.
Voluxis is now eyeing expansion, and plans to develop the
brand in Asia, Europe and the
Middle East, through a mix of organic growth and targeted acquisitions, says Heather. ?
Pilatus Aircraft
Interflight offers service
to wow VIPs as Voluxis
Airframer will supply 23 aircraft this year from an order backlog of 84
DELIVERY KATE SARSFIELD LONDON
Pilatus hands over third PC-24
P
turboprop ? to other European
travellers through a new venture
called Flying Club 24. The company is scheduled for launch in
the coming weeks.
The PC-24 secured European
and US type certification in December 2017, and entered service
with US fractional ownership operator PlaneSense in April. A second example was delivered to Pilatus?s US dealership Western
Aviation in March.
Pilatus plans to deliver 23 PC24s in 2018 from an order backlog of 84 aircraft. ?
ilatus Aircraft has delivered
the third PC-24 business jet to
Swiss businessman, pilot and
long-time PC-12 customer Peter
Brabeck-Letmathe.
The superlight twin ? serial
number 104, carrying the registration HB-VSE ? was handed
over on 23 May during a dedicated event at Pilatus?s headquarters
in Stans.
Brabeck-Letmathe will use the
PC-24 for corporate and private
travel. He will also make the
eight-seater available ? along
with his PC-12 single-engined
COMMITMENT STEPHEN TRIMBLE WASHINGTON DC
Zunum fired up with launch customer
Alternative power gets boost as JetSuite signs for up to 100 developmental six- to 12-seat hybrid electric commuters
remium US charter firm JetSuite has committed to become
the launch operator for a Boeingbacked, hybrid-electric aircraft
now in development by Seattlebased start-up Zunum Aero.
Irvine, California-based JetSuite
signed a memorandum of understanding on 21 May for up to 100
of the yet-to-be-named six- to 12seat commuter aircraft, which is
scheduled for US Federal Aviation Administration certification
and service entry in 2022.
The launch commitment demonstrates growing demand from
commercial operators for alternatives to conventional, gas-powered aircraft on short routes. JetSuite
provides
on-demand
charter with its fleet of Embraer
Phenom 100, 300 and Legacy 650
business jets. It also offers a
flightglobal.com
Zunum Aero
P
Deliveries to US charter company are scheduled to begin in 2022
scheduled public charter service,
known as JetSuiteX. This connects private airport terminals
across California and N
璭vada
with a fleet of 30-seat Embraer
ERJ-135LR regional jets.
In addition to Boeing?s financial
support, Zunum is also backed by
JetBlue Technology Ventures ? a
subsidiary of US carrier JetBlue,
which is a stakeholder in JetSuite.
The company plans to begin
flight tests in mid-2019 with a flying testbed, says chief executive
Ashish Kumar. The twin-engined
testbed will be converted to a hy-
brid-electric powerplant gradually, beginning with one electric
motor replacing one of the aircraft?s gas-powered engines. Both
engines will eventually be replaced with electric motors powered by electricity generated by a
1,450shp (1,080kW)-class turboshaft engine.
Bothell,
Washington-headquartered Zunum plans to select
a supplier for the turbogenerator
in the third quarter, Kumar says,
with GE Aviation, Honeywell,
Rolls-Royce and Safran Aircraft
Engines among the candidates.
By the early 2020s, the company plans to start producing a certificated aircraft with a 1MWclass propulsion system, putting
it in roughly the same size class as
the Cessna Denali turboprop. ?
See Feature P25
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 23
See the
future
from here.
Keeping passengers connected
and comfortable
A great flight experience starts when people are connected
and comfortable.
That?s why we?re helping airlines keep passengers connected
throughout their journeys, simply and seamlessly, via global
broadband connectivity and future-focused IFE systems. And our
world-class interior solutions ? including cabin seating, lighting,
oxygen systems, galleys, inserts and lavatories ? blend comfort and
award-winning innovation to enhance every passenger?s experience.
At Rockwell Collins, we are transforming the future
passenger experience ? every day.
rockwellcollins.com/see-the-future
� 2018 Rockwell Collins. All rights reserved.
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
POWER IS
PRESSING
CONTENTS
26Electric charge New technology
29Rolls-Royce Troubled Trent
32Sales Who propels the big two?
34Next big thing GE9X advances
Messe Berlin
An old engineering maxim says that the way to design a
really good aircraft is to start with the engine ? guidance
that seems particularly apt today, given the link between a
new generation of powerplants and a step-change in fuel
economy. But modern turbofans might be pushing their
design limits ? and what comes next poses new challenges
Rolls-Royce has a solid position with Airbus, as this Trent XWB-powered A350 illustrates; its only toe-hold at Boeing is on the 787
flightglobal.com
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 25
Airbus
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
Airbus E-FanX demonstrator will be a BAe 146 adapted to fly on three ordinary gas turbines and one nacelle-mounted electric fan
Current affairs
A future in which even large airliners are powered by hybrid and eventually all-electric
propulsion systems is becoming an industry expectation; Rolls-Royce details its vision
STEPHEN TRIMBLE LAS VEGAS
I
n Rolls-Royce?s vision of aviation?s future,
the entire market will shift to electric
power for propulsion in ways that will
disrupt business models and even the design of gas turbine engines. Says Rolls-Royce
Electrical global head Mike Mekhiche: ?It?s
not a matter of if. It?s a matter of when. The
entire aerospace business is going to be electrified.?
R-R has given itself a front-row seat as the
transformation unfolds. When the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
launched the (now cancelled) Aurora Flight
Sciences XV-24A Lightning Strike programme, R-R supplied the AE1107 gas turbine used to power the electric motors for the
turboelectric, unmanned air system. When
Airbus launched the E-FanX demonstrator
last year to replace one of the four turbofan
engines on a BAe 146 with a 2MW-propulsion system, R-R signed up to adapt the Sie26 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
mens-supplied electric motor to the existing
nacelle and supply a turbine engine to function as an electric power generator.
BRIDGE TO THE FUTURE
The company plans to continue to be an
active participant as the technology develops.
In a recent presentation, Mekhiche showed
an image of a new technology called the
Embedded Electric Starter Generator (E2SG).
Such a technology presents a bridging step
between today?s technology and an electric
future. Using an Adour engine demonstrator,
an R-R team installed a power-dense E2SG
into the inhospitable core of a jet engine, converting the shaft power directly into electric
power. By removing the need for a bleed-air
offtake from the compressor to an accessory
gearbox, installing the E2SG in a future
engine is another step in the electrification of
current aircraft systems, Mekhiche says.
?We?re looking at a variety of architectures
and systems solutions,? he says. ?We?re look-
ing into critical technologies: motors and batteries and most importantly the control system that allows us to optimise the power flow
between the engine and the loads. The [E2SG]
is one important programme. But it is not the
only one.?
R-R?s vision of the future is one that it largely shares with its peers. GE Aviation has already revealed details of an aggressive push
to develop new megawatt-class motors and
electrical systems for future military and commercial aircraft. Pratt & Whitney has also disclosed a similar effort, including a demonstration of a large electric motor driven by a
turbofan engine. Honeywell had signed up to
supply the 1MW-class electric motor for the
XV-24A, which was to be integrated with the
R-R turboshaft engine to power that aircraft.
R-R has not yet released similar details of
in-house demonstrations of megawatt-class
electric motors and integrated hybrid-electric
propulsion systems, but the company?s vision
for the technology seems consistent with a
flightglobal.com
large investment in research and development. In addition to electrifying current aircraft power systems, Mekhiche sees three
new classes of electric-powered air vehicles
for transportation.
First, a new class of on-demand mobility
platforms will provide intra-urban transports
for one to four passengers seeking to avoid
road traffic congestion. Aurora has pledged to
divert the XV-24A?s distributed electric propulsion system to this emerging market, with
a goal of fielding a commercial product as
soon as 2023.
A second category in the market is
20-40-passenger commuter aircraft with relatively short ranges, Mekhiche says. ?The opportunity there is to actually take away some
of the business jet or regional jet market. It is
very possible and plausible that an electrified
platform offers a much more attractive value
proposition than, say, a business jet or regional jet,? he says.
Finally, the large transport market is also a
candidate for electrification, at least on large
short-range trips with hybrid-electric propulsion systems.
INTEGRATED SYSTEMS
Urban transport vehicles like CityAirbus are the likely first application for breakthrough
ket, with small electric motors providing
back-up power in short bursts during, for
example, a situation with an engine failure.
The next stage of electrification is coming
soon, as suggested by Airbus?s plan to fly the
E-FanX demonstrator in 2020. It uses a turboelectric propulsion system, with a gas turbine
generating electricity for electric motors that
provide the thrust. ?Your propulsion and
your engine are now connected only by ca-
bles. They are not connected to mechanical
structures,? Mekhiche says.
A key limitation of a turboelectric system
is the absence of an integrated battery for energy storage, he adds. Pushing beyond a turboelectric system with integrated batteries
opens new paths to improving overall fuel
efficiency.
?We?re looking at what electrification
[means] to the engine design,? Mekhiche says. ??
Airbus
In the largest category, the transition will be
more gradual, but in many ways has already
started. By introducing new technologies
such as the E2SG, R-R can make today?s gaspowered aircraft produce electricity more efficiently, which allows designers to convert
more onboard systems to electric power.
Another upgrade exists in the rotorcraft mar-
Airbus
ELECTRIC PROPULSION
Airbus/Rolls-Royce e-Thrust hybrid concept combines gas turbine power generation and backup batteries with electric fans for thrust
flightglobal.com
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 27
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
?? ?How does the engine design change because it is now going to be part of an electric
powerplant? That is extremely relevant? to
understanding our value stream and how we
operate going forward in this electrified market. When we started doing electrification of
cars and heavy-duty vehicles, we realised a
lot of benefits. But actually, it was not until
we had engines that were designed to be optimised for an electric propulsion system that
we were able to realise the full capability of
that type of system.?
In what is called a parallel hybrid architecture, R-R envisions packaging a gas turbine
and batteries to deliver thrust to an electric
motor. By augmenting electric power with
batteries during take-off and step climbs, the
propulsion supplier is able to reduce the maximum thrust rating for the gas turbine without
sacrificing performance, he says.
?There?s an entire paradigm shift around
what the engine does and when does it do it
and how that can be realised,? Mekhiche
says. ?
STRATEGY STEPHEN TRIMBLE CHICAGO
European electric systems expertise makes transatlantic journey for Siemens
Anton and Botti were both amateur pilots filled
with dread about the future of gas-powered
aviation. As emission regulations become
more strict over the next four decades, Anton
could envisage a day when it would no longer
be possible to fly conventional aircraft on regional routes.
Current CFM56?s 5:1
power-to-weight ratio is
Siemens? benchmark
Boeing
SPARK OF AN IDEA
Since its founding 170 years ago, German conglomerate Siemens has built a global industrial
empire, making electric power components for
cars, hospitals and power stations. It has gained
a toehold in the aerospace industry as a provider of product lifecycle management (PLM)
software for aircraft designers and automated
systems for aircraft assemblers.
Now, Siemens has found a way to enter the
aviation market as a tier one supplier, leveraging
its decades-old expertise in electric power systems in an industry on the verge of a major transformation in propulsion system technology.
It began with a chance encounter between a
Siemens and Airbus executive in 2008. A decade later, Siemens has opened a US facility in
Waco, Texas, dedicated to introducing innovators in the US market to a potential new partner in several key systems for an
electric-powered aircraft.
?What we really wanted to do here in the
USA is stand up a team. We need to be close to
innovators. If you?re not in the US aviation market, you?re not really in the market, so this team
was stood up to be extension of the European
28 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
team,? says Teri Hamlin, Siemens? vice-president
of electric and hybrid-electric propulsion.
The Waco-based team, which is co-located
with Texas State Technical College, is focused on
aircraft at the lower end of the power scale.
These include unmanned air vehicles for the defence market, auxiliary power systems for large
commercial aircraft and an emerging class of
electric-powered urban air taxis, Hamlin says:
?We?re on some projects right now that should
be announced real soon ? hopefully, by this summer.?
The US operation is building on a decade-long
pursuit by their colleagues in Europe of a new role
for Siemens in the aviation supply chain. As the
market electrifies, Siemens is attempting to take a
position now occupied by the likes of United
Technologies? UTC Aerospace Systems,
Honeywell and GE Aviation?s electric power systems division.
Siemens? quest to obtain this role began in
2008 during a chance encounter between
Siemens executive Frank Anton and then-Airbus
chief technology officer Jean Botti at a Siemens?
in-house innovation day. According to Siemens,
For Siemens, the only possible solution to the
problem called for electrifying aircraft propulsion systems. It seemed an impractical vision at
the time, given the state of electrical power
technology. At that time, the only electric motors on the market were used for terrestrial applications, lacking the aviation industry?s
demand for the lightest possible weight. A conventional electric motor produces about 1kW
for every pound of weight, resulting in a roughly
1:1 power-to-weight ratio. By comparison, a
CFM International CFM56-7B has a power-toweight ratio above 5:1.
As Siemens set out to conquer this problem,
it drew on its industrial digitalisation strategy.
The company?s PLM software allows designers
to create a virtual copy of a physical product,
using simulation tools and computational analysis to make rapid improvements.
The result of that approach led to the design
of a new 260kW motor for the aviation market,
boasting a 5:1 power-to-weight ratio. That improvement was possible because of advances
in the efficiency of the motor?s power cycle. It
was also enhanced by Siemens? use of its PLM
software suite to make certain components
substantially lighter. A bearing shield on the
front of the motor normally weighs 11.3kg
(25lb), but that figure was reduced to 4kg.
?Siemens is not intending to become an aircraft OEM. We have no intention to move into
that space,? Hamlin says. ?We?re focusing on
what we?re good at and that is the electric propulsion and the electrification of complex systems, including motors, generators, power and
signal distribution, inverters and complete endto-end drive trains of these electric components.
This is where Siemens shines. We have decades
and decades, 100-plus years of experience in
complex electrical systems. We?re coming at this
market from that level of expertise.? ?
flightglobal.com
TRENT 1000
High stakes
blade game
For Rolls-Royce, designing and delivering modifications
to resolve Trent 1000 reliability problems are a drain on
engineering resources, cash and customer confidence
MICHAEL GUBISCH LONDON
W
hat starts as a trickle can end
up a torrent: when, in 2016,
Rolls-Royce first announced a
durability issue with blades in
the Trent 1000?s intermediate-pressure turbine (IPT), there was no indication that the
modification programme would grow in
scope and complexity, causing significant
disruption for some Boeing 787 operators.
Airlines had to park Dreamliners as engines
required unscheduled maintenance to replace
IPT blades, and aircraft could not be returned
to service amid a shortage of available spare
Trent 1000s ? some carriers had to lease addi-
tional capacity. It became clear that on certain
Trent 1000s the durability issues also extended
to the high-pressure turbine (HPT) and intermediate-pressure compressor (IPC).
The costs are already mounting: R-R disclosed in March that in 2017 it incurred a
charge of �7 million ($311 million) related
to addressing technical issues on Trent
1000s and the Trent 900s powering Airbus
A380s. And the UK engine maker said that
this year, the upgrade programme?s annual
cash impact would ?broadly double? from
last year?s �0 million, before dipping in
2019 as work drops off.
However, that was before the revelation in
April of ?additional disruption? ? and higher
costs ? from further inspections required to
address IPC blade durability issues on Trent
1000 Package C engines.
Of course, previous engine programmes ?
of both R-R and other manufacturers ? have
required updates to address premature part
deterioration, particularly in the hot section.
And R-R says it is ?not uncommon for longterm engine programmes to experience technical issues during their life?.
??
Rolls-Royce
Trent 1000 modifications have disrupted
operations for multiple 787 customers
flightglobal.com
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 29
AirTeamImages
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
ANA grounded some of its 787s in 2016 due to corrosion-related part failures, prompting redesign of intermediate-pressure turbine blades
??
Teal Group vice-president analysis
Richard Aboulafia, however, considers the
Trent 1000 modification effort to be ?somewhat worse than normal?.
ENGINEERING RESOURCES
Aboulafia wonders whether R-R?s issues with
the Trent 1000 ? and Pratt & Whitney?s problems with its PW1000G-series geared turbofan ? might be a result of having ?greater ambitions than resources?.
The technical challenges and required engineering effort to develop more efficient engines have hugely increased from previous
generations of equipment. More broadly,
Aboulafia thinks the Trent 1000 problems
show that ?we are on the very limits of
squeezing performance improvement out of
existing turbine architectures? and that highly engineered parts come with a ?certain set
of vulnerabilities?.
Especially on Airbus and Boeing?s latest
aircraft programmes ? the A320neo, A330neo, 737 Max and 777X ? fuel-efficiency gains
have been mainly, if not entirely, achieved
through new engine technology. As a result,
the airframers have redistributed much of
the research and development effort, and
therefore risk, for new programmes to the engine manufacturers; at the same time, Airbus
and Boeing have put engine suppliers under
pricing pressure and driven production to
record levels.
?The ability to add resources at the engine
companies was constrained at exactly the moment when so much was expected of them,?
Aboulafia says.
Boeing 787 chief engineer Bob Whittington
revealed in January that ?all? operators of
Trent 1000-powered Dreamliners were affected by ?some of the wear-out issues in the
Rolls-Royce engine?, which entered service
in 2011.
30 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
The initial IPT blade replacement
� rogramme for the Trent 1000 was disclosed
p
after All Nippon Airways had t璭mporarily
grounded some of its 787s in 2016 as a result
of premature, corrosion-related part failures.
R-R redesigned the IPT blade and introduced it on the latest version of the Trent
1000, the 1000 TEN, and on the Trent 7000
derivative that powers the A330neo. The new
part is being retrofitted to earlier Trent 1000s
and, says R-R, should resolve the durability
issue. But the modification programme nevertheless caused a wave of shop visits as some
engines required urgent blade replacement.
There has been inevitable disruption for
operators: Air New Zealand temporarily
grounded several Dreamliners after experiencing in-flight failures on two of its 787-9s in
December 2017. The carrier resorted to wetleasing aircraft to support its schedule.
Virgin Atlantic in January disclosed plans
to add four A330s to its fleet and return to
service a stored A340-600 in a bid to
璱mprove the ?resilience? of its operation ?in
light of an industry-wide shortage of Trent
1000 engines?.
The IPC blade issue was first disclosed
after an engine failure aboard a Scoot 787-9 in
late 2016. Singapore?s Transport Safety Investigation Bureau determined that the failure
was caused by an IPC blade having broken off
? probably as a result of material fatigue ? and
linked two further shutdown events on Scoot
787-9s last year to the same issue.
R-R says the cracking problem applies to
the Trent 1000?s Package C configuration and
that neither the TEN nor the Package B version is affected. The manufacturer is in the
process of preparing redesigned blades for the
IPC ? and for the HPT where erosion is an
issue on existing blades.
The new parts are scheduled to become
available by year-end and will be retrofitted to
affected engines. R-R believes that the modification effort can be completed during
planned rather than unscheduled shop visits.
Whether that retrofit programme will
cover certain TEN engines is not entirely
clear. R-R says Trent 1000 TEN compressors
?are of different designs to the Package C?,
and that ?a new standard? HPT blade is installed on the TEN.
However, the manufacturer does not rule
out retrofitting a new IPC and the latest HPT
blades to the TEN. ?We will continue to positively confirm that none of the issues we are
experiencing on the Trent 1000 Package C engines will apply to the Trent 1000 TEN,? the
manufacturer says.
And earlier this year, R-R said it was ?possible that a population of early Trent 1000
TEN and Trent 7000 engines may benefit from
proactive maintenance to embody parts in
their first shop visit that weren?t available at
the point of production?.
ETOPS LIMITATIONS
Regulatory pressure is compounding the disruption for operators.
Following the April disclosure relating to
the IPC, the European Aviation Safety Agency
mandated that operators conduct repetitive
on-wing borescope inspections for all Package C engines, and introduced additional inspections for powerplants employed for extended twin-engine operations (ETOPS).
Meanwhile, the US Federal Aviation Administration more than halved the time that
Trent 1000 Package C-powered 787s can fly
under ETOPS regulations, to 140min, from a
previous maximum of 330min.
The US regulator says that if an engine were
to fail and the remaining powerplant already
had cracked IPC blades, the ?likelihood of the
remaining engine failing will further increase
before a diversion can be safely completed?.
flightglobal.com
Bloomberg Intelligence warns that the
ETOPS restriction could put R-R at a disadvantage on the 787 versus rival GE Aviation
and its GEnx engine.
In a research note, Bloomberg senior
璦erospace analyst George Ferguson asserts
that airlines will be required to ?adjust operations to remain closer to diversion
璦irports?, and that this ?reduces efficiency
and range, especially for extreme long-haul
operations, which are most appealing for
787 buyers?.
He describes the FAA directive as a ?blow?
to R-R and operators of Trent 1000 Package-Cpowered 787s, which will ?probably hurt
sales and value for the airplane?.
ANZ subsequently disclosed that it needed
to introduce refuelling stops on certain 787
flights as new weight restrictions apply to aircraft with affected engines. ANA and British
Airways, meanwhile, say the ETOPS changes
have had a minor effect on their operations.
Norwegian?s chief executive Bj鴕n Kjos acknowledged in April that the increased inspection regime will affect operations, but
says ?it is too early to predict the scale of the
issue?.
R-R?s effort to resolve the Trent 1000 problems and modify the in-service fleet ?takes an
awful lot of resources?, which will likely
have an impact on the company?s ability to
concentrate engineering staff on other projects like future engine development, Aboulafia suggests.
He says the development and implementation of modifications for issues on in-service
engines is ?fairly labour-intensive stuff?, while
the ramping-up of production for new engine
programmes, such as the Trent XWB for the
A350, is largely a matter of capital expenditure.
R-R says it had to redeploy ?engineering
resource? to tackle the Trent 1000 issues, but
notes: ?[We] expect this to be a temporary
measure.? The manufacturer says its devel-
Rolls-Royce
TRENT 1000
Engineers have been redeployed from other projects to help resolve Trent 1000 issues
opmental Advance and UltraFan engine programmes ?continue to progress as expected?.
Aboulafia does not believe that airlines and
aircraft manufacturers have lost faith in R-R
as a result of the Trent 1000 woes. Operators
which have ordered Trent 1000-powered
787s have not yet switched to the GEnx. But
he warns that the problems have not done R-R
?any favours? either and that ?a lot of it depends how quickly they can make it good?.
R-R concedes: ?Of course these issues must
affect perception of the Trent 1000 by customers.? But the engine maker says it is ?confident? that the family?s latest version and current production standard, the TEN, is a ?great
engine? for the 787.
Dreamliner is the only Boeing airliner
for which Rolls-Royce supplies engines
flightglobal.com
Rolls-Royce
SOLUTIONS
?It is our job to show them [airline and airframe customers] they can continue to trust in
us and the engine,? R-R says. It foresees that
solutions for the existing issues will be implemented throughout the fleet by 2022.
However, Aboulafia suggests the Trent
1000 problems could have an effect on future
orders: ?I think where it might hurt is where
people are looking at A350-1000 XWB versus
777X and... A330neo versus 787.? Both of the
Airbus programmes are exclusively powered
by R-R engines.
?The big issue here for Rolls-Royce is that
the 787 is their only connection with Boeing
right now,? says Aboulafia.
GE, P&W and R-R have all submitted engine proposals for Boeing?s proposed New
Mid-market Airplane (NMA), which could
enter service around 2025. If Boeing were to
launch the NMA programme without R-R on
board, it would leave the UK manufacturer
having almost the entirety of its large engine
business ? all in-production models except
the Trent 1000 ? tied to Airbus.
That is already the case today, as the Trent
700, 900, 7000 and XWB are exclusively employed on Airbus long-haul aircraft. But
Aboulafia thinks a further re-enforcement of
that alliance in the long-haul segment is a
?very risky concept? for R-R.
GE is, likewise, the sole engine supplier to
Boeing?s 777 and 747-8 programmes. However, the US engine maker also has, via its
CFM International joint venture with Safran,
a strong position in the high-volume narrowbody market. Since it withdrew from the International Aero Engines consortium with
P&W, Japanese Aero Engines and MTU, R-R
has no active participation in the single-aisle
segment.
R-R, for its part, argues that the prospect of
a potential selection as NMA engine supplier
is ?unrelated? to the Trent 1000 problems:
?We continue to invest in our future engine
programmes irrespective of this [Trent 1000]
challenge and will continue to evaluate any
opportunities to have our engines selected as
they come up.? ?
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 31
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
Powerbase
Boeing?s 777X family will use efficiency
gains from in-development GE9X
Engine options impact operating performance and airline
economics. We use data from Flight Fleets Analyzer to
detail the selection balance for Airbus and Boeing types
Airbus A320neo-family by engine manufacturer and region
2,000
1,500
1,000
Qatar Airways? A380 fleet is exclusively
driven by Engine Alliance GP7200s
500
0
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Latin America North America
Middle East
Africa
Unknown
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet and order backlog at 9 May 2018
CFM International
Pratt & Whitney
Unannounced
Boeing 787 by engine manufacturer and region
500
400
300
200
100
0
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
North America Latin America
Africa
Unknown
Delivered in March, 737 Max 8 is a great
Leap forward for Kazakh carrier SCAT
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet and order backlog at 9 May 2018
GE Aviation
Rolls-Royce
Boeing 787 by engine
manufacturer
Unannounced
Airbus A320neo-family by
engine manufacturer
33%
Total
39%
8%
29%
1,258
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet and order backlog at 9 May 2018
Rolls-Royce
5,003
32%
59%
GE Aviation
Total
Unannounced
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet and order backlog at 9 May 2018
CFM International
Pratt & Whitney
Unannounced
Xxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxx
746
413
99
1,936
1,465
1,602
32 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
flightglobal.com
FLEETS AND ORDERS
Airbus/Boeing order backlog by engine manufacturer
Airbus
Boeing
0
1,000
2,000
3,000
4,000
5,000
6,000
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer (May 2018)
CFM International
Pratt & Whitney
Rolls-Royce
GE Aviation
International Aero Engines
Unannounced
Airbus/Boeing in service fleet by engine manufacturer
Boeing
Airbus
Boeing
0
2,000
4,000
6,000
8,000
10,000
12,000
Source: Flight Fleets Analyzer
Note: In-service fleet at 9 May 2018; Boeing data includes former MDC types
CFM International
Pratt & Whitney
Rolls-Royce
GE Aviation
International Aero Engines
Engine Alliance
Airbus
R Gnecco/Airbus
PW1100G is one of two options available
to customers for re-engined A320neo
flightglobal.com
Boeing
Paul Gordon/Boeing
Rolls-Royce has secured orders to equip
one-third of global Dreamliner fleet
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 33
GE Aviation
COMMERCIAL ENGINES
Installing the powerplant on inboard pylon of 747-400 flying testbed?s left wing ? carried out in record time ? was a major engineering feat
Thrusting
onwards
With its giant GE9X a critical element of the 777X update to
Boeing?s popular big twin, GE Aviation is powering ahead
with testing and production of its most advanced engine
STEPHEN TRIMBLE WASHINGTON DC
I
n the second week of May, the crew of an
Antonov An-124 operated by Russian cargo
airline Volga-Dnepr got to work on the
flightline at Victorville, California, loading
a pallet measuring 3.96m (13ft) wide and
7.77m long into the cargo bay of the chartered
widebody freighter for emergency shipment
to Columbus, Ohio. The size of the payload
and the route were dead give-aways: GE Aviation?s first GE9X flight-test engine was coming
home to Evendale, Ohio.
In early May, GE wrapped up the first phase
34 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
of a two-stage flight-test effort on the 105,000lbthrust (467kN) GE9X. Phase 1 included 18
flights on board the company?s Victorville-based
Boeing 747-400 flying testbed, GE9X programme manager Ted Ingling tells FlightGlobal.
GE is on a tight schedule. Boeing needs the
GE9X ready to begin flight testing for certification on board the first 777-9 in 2019, allowing
the aircraft to enter service in 2020. So the new
powerplant for the 777-9 needed to return to
Evendale to prepare for phase 2, which is
scheduled to begin in the third quarter.
?It will be months of work to bring the engine down and back up again. The majority of
the activities are around the instrumentation
that we have on this vehicle. There?s over 1,600
pieces of discrete information through sensors
that get bundled onto this engine and routed
into the aircraft,? Ingling says.
?We want to preserve that instrumentation
for the missions that follow. As a result, what
would normally be a quick turn-around for
incorporation of the hardware changes takes
us much longer to bring the engine down and
back up and make sure all the instrumentation is working,? he adds.
GETTING STARTED
The first phase of flight-testing with the GE9X
kicked off on 13 March, with the engine designated as No. 4 within the programme lifting
off in Victorville. In nearly two months, the
747-400 flying testbed logged 110h overall
during the 18 flights. ?A portion [of the flight
tests are reserved] for check-out of the aircraft
and systems and the rest of it was dedicated to
achieving the objectives of the flight test mission,? Ingling says. Flight-test crews also explored the high-altitude envelope for the
GE9X, evaluating how its cruise performance
compared with ground test data.
?We are very encouraged about the engine.
All indications from fight test is that the enflightglobal.com
First phase of flight testing with the GE9X-105B was launched from Victorville in March
using the existing configuration. The redesigned lever arms for the variable stator vanes
will be installed as part of the tear-down prior
to the restart of flight tests in phase 2, Ingling
says.
SECOND FRONT
Meanwhile, ground testing is continuing at
GE?s test centre in Peebles, Ohio. GE delivered
the first engine to test (FETT) for the GE9X
programme in 2016. This features its most advanced engine core, with a compression ratio
of 27:1, versus 23:1 in the GE90-115B. The
GE9X is loaded with new technology. Its $42
million list price makes a set of two engines
on each 777X nearly equal to the advertised
cost of a 737-700. For that price, GE has promised that the engine will burn 10% less fuel
than the GE90 in flight and 5% less than a
Rolls-Royce Trent XWB-97 on a test stand.
Driven by concerns about moving too
quickly, GE afforded itself a 13-month win-
GE Aviation
gine is doing exactly what we want it to do
and we?re on track to meet our objectives on
performance,? Ingling says. ?The engine is really performing well and we couldn?t be happier with that.?
The engine is installed on the inboard station of the left wing of the 747-400, which was
itself an engineering challenge, he adds. ?We
put the engine on wing in record time and
with little drama. Boeing designed the pylon
for us? and how it attaches to the engine is
really the same as how it would do on the
777X, so Boeing?s been involved in our [flying
testbed] since the beginning. The installation
was really remarkably quiet and flawless. Engine and instrumentation systems came together perfectly.?
But the start of testing was delayed by more
than two months, after GE engineers made a
late discovery. Inside the compressor of the
GE9X are 11 stages of rotating blades, with
stationary vanes located in between each set
of spinning rotors. These stator vanes slow
down the airflow, thereby raising its pressure
as it moves upstream to the combustor. To optimise the pressure of the airflow in take-off
and cruise conditions, the engine?s computeroperated controls can adjust the position of
the stator vanes relative to the airflow.
Lever arms mounted externally on the engine case set the pitch of the vanes, but GE
discovered a problem last December. The mechanical design and materials used to build
the lever arms were correct, but the device
wore out faster than it had expected.
?We didn?t alter the material of the lever
arms or anything,? Ingling says. ?It was just
the design was not as robust as we needed it
to be. It didn?t affect the engine from a [specific fuel consumption] standpoint.?
It was too late to incorporate the new lever
arm design in the first GE9X flight-test engine,
so the first phase of flight tests began in March
GE Aviation
GE9X
An array of instrumentation captures performance information across 1,600 parameters
flightglobal.com
dow between delivering the FETT and the
second engine to test (SETT) with certification-ready hardware. Since entering ground
testing at Peebles 12 months ago, the SETT
has been joined by four more test engines.
?We?ve made some fantastic progress on
the certification programme,? Ingling says.
?We?re through a little more than 25% of all
required certification testing. Icing tests were
completed in the first quarter. We completed
all the crosswind testing, [as well as] inlet
compatibility, aero-mechanics of the fan and
booster, and aero-mechanics and thermal surveying of the high-pressure turbine.?
The GE9X actually represents an entire
family of engines. The 777-9 will be powered
by the version designated GE9X-105B, with
the numeral in the suffix representing the
105,000lb-thrust power rating. GE also plans
to develop a 102,000lb-thrust version of the
engine, along with another with a 93,000lbthrust output, according to a regulatory document filed with the US Federal Aviation Administration in November 2017. The reduced
ratings will likely power future variants of the
777X family, including the long-range 777-8
and a potential freighter version.
For now, however, GE is focused on getting
the GE9X engine certificated.
?We?re in the middle of building the very
first compliance engine in Durham, [North
Carolina]. The long-lead hardware on production engines are coming in,? Ingling says. ?So,
we?re ramping the production process using
the Durham facility. The development engines are built in Evendale. Compliance and
production [engines] will be assembled in
Durham and tested out of Peebles.
?We?re building the very first compliance
engine and we?re accumulating hardware up
to the third engine, so more than 50% of
hardware is accumulated depending on
�
which engine you?re looking at,? he adds. ?
29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 35
STRAIGHT&LEVEL
From yuckspeak to tales of yore, send your offcuts to murdo.morrison@flightglobal.com
Reflight Airworks
C-47 makes its
passage to India
The Indian air force?s vintage
flight squadron has inducted a
restored Second World War-era
C-47 military transport, after a
six-year restoration effort in the
UK by Reflight Airworks.
The aircraft is an ex-RAF
example that entered service in
1944 and later operated in
civilian hands in the UK.
A military variant of the
Douglas DC-3 Dakota, C-47s
were operated by India?s air
force from the 1940s until 1988,
and were were instrumental in
newly independent India?s
defence of Srinagar in 1947-1948.
The service has plans to add
five aircraft to its vintage flight
fleet, which comprises three
aircraft at Hindan air base near
New Delhi. Future restoration
projects include a Spitfire Mk
VIII and possibly a Hindustan
Aeronautics Hindustan Trainer
2 (HT-2).
No-gateau area
The long-suffering souls who
staff airport security have a new
concern every 17 May ? in
Norway at least. National day
sees many adopt traditional
dress ? for women, the bunad.
Oslo airport operator Avinor
had advice for bunad-wearers:
brooches, buttons and jewellery
should go in hand luggage, but
knives must be checked in.
The disclosures made in the
Report of the Select
Committee on
National
Expenditure,
relative to the
waste of public money at
Loch Doon, amount to a
scandal of the first
magnitude.
Night flying
Transported from the past: the restored Dakota rolls out
of retirement ahead of the ceremony
And the famous bl鴗kake, as
much part of the celebrations as
the garb? ?Travellers cannot
bring cream cakes through
security, as cream is classified as
spreadable/liquid.? However:
?Cakes don?t travel well as
checked luggage either.?
But you can have your cake
and eat it. ?Previously,
passengers have shared cakes
they have been unable to bring
through security with other
passengers and employees. This
has lightened the atmosphere at
the security checkpoint.?
That can only be a good thing.
The write stuff
Ladd Company/Warner Bros/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock
They led... thousands followed
Loch Doon scandal
With his white suits, fedora
hats, and debonair manner, the
late New York journalist and
novelist Tom Wolfe was an
unlikely inspiration for
generations of pilots.
Yet The Right Stuff, his 1979
account of the aviators who took
part in the USA?s early test
flights on experimental highspeed aircraft and the Project
Mercury programme ? later
made into a film ? has been
avidly read by many who have
gone on to have a cockpit career.
Wolfe, an icon for many in the
scribbling trade too, conducted
extensive research and
interviews with pilots and their
families, capturing the warrior
spirit, mental and physical
36 | Flight International | 29 May-4 June 2018
Bright moonlight may,
when nature elects to
provide such
illumination,
reduce the
difference to
some extent, but even so
the pilot depends far more
upon what he can see and
hear inside his ?office? than
what he may be able to
discern beyond the Perspex
windows of the cockpit.
Apollo situation
attributes ? ?the right stuff? ? of
the pioneers who pushed the
boundaries of human
achievement in the skies.
Aero-knowledge
Valerio Francati has written a
very different tome for those
aspiring to a future in the
flightdeck. A simple ? without
being dumbed-down ? roadmap
for pilots preparing for
interviews, The Pilot?s Guide
contains a sample CV and
covering letter, glossary of terms
with 80 illustrations, tables of
formulae, and mental maths tips
for quick metric conversions.
The 204-page book is also
suitable for enthusiasts looking
to hone their aeronautical
knowledge, and is available on
Amazon and eBay.
Three sets of three-man
Apollo crews are training for
definite missions
and, for the first
time, they know
what rockets and
spacecraft they will ride. The
astronauts for the actual
lunar mission have yet to be
named, but their landing
sites on the surface of the
Moon have been selected.
Remote control
The UK Defence Research
Agency is testing a system
which could
ultimately put
the control of
airliners into the
control of air-traffic
controllers on the ground.
The DRA is working on the
man-machine interface
aspect of air-traffic
management by datalink.
100-YEAR ARCHIVE
Every issue of Flight
from 1909 onwards
can be viewed online at
flightglobal.com/archive
flightglobal.com
LETTERS
flight.international@flightglobal.com
The opinions on this page do not
necessarily represent those of the editor.
Letters without a full postal address supplied may not be published. Letters may
also be published on flightglobal.com
and must be no longer than 250 words.
A Rolls-Royce
of gambles
Regarding your article: ?R-R
breaks back of urgent checks on
787 engines? (Flight International, 8-14 May), the problems
with the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000
engine on the Boeing 787 will be
long-term and massively costly.
They are due to a fundamental
flaw in the basis of OEMs? understanding of the associated
operational risks.
In the 1980s and 1990s, R-R
instigated a policy to capture the
large engine maintenance,
璻epair and overhaul market.
They restricted authority to independent MROs that wished to
start this activity, thereby limiting competition and encouraging a monopoly.
Their next idea was to offer
full on-wing support for large-fan
engines, from shop visits to spare
engine cover, all supposedly
carefully monitored by ECM [engine condition monitoring].
This removed the risk from the
operator for day-to-day operations, but came at a cost dictated
by the OEM and removed any
opportunity for the operator to
reflect true engine operating
Siegfried Kuttig/REX/Shutterstock
We welcome your letters on any
aspect of the aerospace industry.
Please write to:
The Editor, Flight International,
Quadrant House, The Quadrant,
Sutton, Surrey, SM2 5AS, UK
Or email:
flight.international@flightglobal.com
Fresh ideas needed to raise public awareness over compliance
REGULATION
Reaching out to all drone fliers
Your special report on unmanned systems (Flight International,
24-30 April), shows the field is rife with new TLAs (three-letter
acronyms) ? UAV, UAS, CTT, CCD, ATC, UTM, TCL? and the
technologies behind them.
What is not apparent is how the increasingly top-down
璻egulatory framework will assess and influence the blithely
璾nknowing, or the wilfully anti-compliant drone flier.
Here in New Zealand, a major need for education has been
identified, so our regulator appears to be setting up for tighter
regulation and registration. And that worked for gun control,
right? Certainly the fresh ideas the final article alludes to should
include reaching out to all fliers and the public.
Allen Reynolds
Auckland, New Zealand
costs, influenced by the type of
operation and the value that
璦irline engineering departments
added. R-R bases all its charges
on removal rates of engines during the life cycle of the contract
with the operator.
If the operator removal rate
changes as a result of flight
hours or cycles, the OEM is
璦llowed to amend the contract.
In the case of the Trent 1000, the
engines need to be removed
璸rematurely because of hardware failures. There are insufficient reserves for the engine
shop visits or loan engine costs.
In the normal life cycle of an
engine, the first-run shop visit interval is always longer than the
subsequent ones; shortening the
shop visit intervals because of
hardware failures means that
until the end of the contract, the
OEM will always be out of pocket, as the removal rate on which
the contract is calculated ? and
on which spare engine and spare
parts provisioning is based ? is
corrupted. The operator delegating too much risk to the OEM is
long-term short-sightedness. An
operator?s accountant will rub
their hands with glee at the prospect of the OEM taking on all the
risk, but will quickly blame their
engineering/technical experts for
failures when the resultant spare
parts shortages occur, or aircraft
are grounded.
The gamble for the OEM was
fine if all went well, but we all
know that hardware failures do
happen with high-thrust engines.
Did the operators really understand the real risk to the operation? The OEM has even run out
of spare engines and spare parts
to support the removal
璸rogramme. The additional cost
of loss of extended twin-engine
operations must be staggering.
It appears that R-R management did not fully understand
the potential risks in providing
this kind of support. Can they
璦bsorb the staggering cost of this
failure? Or will the operators,
shareholders and staff pay the
璾ltimate price, whatever that
may turn out to be?
Don Landsborough
via email
Losing appeal
Regarding your comment: ?Fly
with us: please? (Flight International, 10-16 April) and subsequent letters by Peter Bishop
and Frank Kristensen (Flight International, 8-14 May), a lack of
candidate pilots may not be an
issue of a generational mind or
skill set, but rather the result of
commercial airline flying losing
its appeal.
Other than earning a living,
the attraction for those minded to
enjoy it is that of flying an
璦ircraft. Each time I read accident
reports and note the pilot?s
hours, I am left wondering how
many of those hours were spent
with hands on the controls, and
as a result, how prepared the
pilot was for the unexpected.
The industry has failed this
generation of pilots by making
modern airliners inhuman and
uninteresting in the questionable
name of safety and efficiency.
Richard Chandless
Cr阠hes-sur-Sa鬾e, France
Check out Flight International?s Image Store
Browse or customise a gift or memento from our CUTAWAY ARCHIVE
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29 May-4 June 2018 | Flight International | 37
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