20 September 2019 by David Kaminski-Morrow, London, FlightGlobal,com
Investigators are probing another serious engine failure on a Swiss Airbus A220-300, less than two months after a previous similar incident involving a sister aircraft on the same route.
The aircraft (HB-JCA) had been operating Geneva-London Heathrow on 16 September when the failure occurred in the left-hand Pratt & Whitney PW1500G engine during climb.
US National Transportation Safety Board investigators state that the incident took place just before the twinjet reached its cruising altitude of 35,000ft.
The crew returned to Geneva after carrying out quick-reference handbook procedures and declaring an emergency.
Inspection of the aircraft after it landed showed that the stage-one rotor in the low-pressure compressor had separated and there was a hole in the compressor case.
None of the 77 occupants was injured.
French investigators were already looking into the failure of the left-hand PW1500G on another Swiss A220-300, under similar circumstances, on 25 July.
The aircraft (HB-JCM) had departed Geneva for Heathrow and had been climbing through 32,000ft when the failure occurred.
Investigation authority BEA subsequently sought public assistance to find engine components which they believe were shed from the aircraft over France. The stage-one rotor of the low-pressure compressor was found to be missing after the jet diverted to Paris.
The aircraft involved in the latest incident was delivered to Swiss in May 2017. It had been operating the LX358 service while the earlier event occurred to flight LX348.
Investigation of both incidents has been delegated to the US NTSB.
Attention airline bathroom loiterers: The next generation of Airbus aircraft will track how long you’ve been in there.
It’s all part of an effort to make commercial cabins a digitally aware domain. The program is Airbus’s bid to raise the Internet of Things — that buzz-phrase for connected household gadgets — to cruising altitude.
The Airbus Connected Experience aims to give flight attendants a more detailed survey of the cabin, with sensors for such critical data as when bathroom soap is running low and how much toilet paper remains in each bathroom. But the rethinking of the passenger environment doesn’t just stop with the lavatory.
At each seat, your belt will signal red for unbuckled and green when fastened. The goal is faster boarding and departure, dispensing with those lap-scrutinizing walk-throughs flight attendants must perform. The crew will also have access to information on what’s onboard and where, like which galley carts contain specific meals, such as preorders or vegetarian selections.
“It’s not a concept, it’s not a dream: It’s reality,” Ingo Wuggetzer, Airbus’s vice president of cabin marketing, said Tuesday at an aviation trade show in Los Angeles. Airbus has begun flight testing the connected cabin on its A350 test aircraft and plans to introduce it on the A321 family in 2021, followed by the larger, two-aisle A350 series two years later.
As cool as all of this may seem to you, the passenger, it’s just another way for airlines to squeeze more profit out of operations. While data from these various areas will be sent to flight attendant tablets or smart phones in real time, the crunching of that data over time is where the real value lies. The connectivity Airbus envisions for its cabins will provide an enormous trove of information airlines can use to analyze and optimize in their never-ending quest for cost efficiencies.
From the time it takes a flight attendant to respond to a call button, to preferences for prosecco versus chardonnay, to which bathroom gets the most use — the information can help optimize all aspects of flight. “You can make the service more attentive,” said Ronald Sweers, an Airbus cabin-products director. While the digital doodads are expected to simplify flight attendant workloads, their true value may lie in giving airlines more insights about what happens in the cabin.
That space, Wuggetzer noted, is a virtual “black box” to carriers once the plane leaves a gate. But not for much longer.
Airbus also plans to offer airlines the option of cameras at each lavatory (on the outside, mind you) to count how many passengers are waiting, a feature which may help flight attendants redirect some of that traffic on larger jets. While certainly helpful to that man in 17C who had one too many sodas, the data will also show airlines the length of wait times on various flights, and on different aircraft types.
More seriously, it can also alert a flight attendant that someone inside may be ill or need assistance, Wuggetzer said.
The crew will also be able to control features such as window shades and public address volume from their mobile devices. The system will know which overhead bin spaces are open, with green lights along the cabin, much like the lighting schemes used in parking decks to signal drivers toward unoccupied spaces. That should, in theory, speed boarding, Airbus says.
As far as Airbus is concerned, the cabin’s platform is open so customer airlines can attach their own crew applications or other software, Sweers said. Many large carriers have customized or proprietary software for such onboard tasks as catering.
“The feedback we heard from airlines was, ‘OK, Airbus, we don’t believe you’re able to give us an application that will work with our systems,’” Sweers said on the trade show floor, discussing the galley equipment.
Throw into this mix what Air Canada will be able to accomplish as it adds the Air Transat fleet.
Air Canada has described the A220 as disruptive to their network as the 787 has been. With each new A220 delivered, US air travelers will have another option across the Atlantic. US carriers are likely to have a less compelling reaction, as the Canadian market is so much smaller.
The Montreal-Toulouse move has Airbus and its supply chain written all over. And, crucially, Air Canada made this move before Air France. The use of the A330 may be a tad large, but the service won’t be daily. However, this where the Air Transat fleet comes in handy. Air Canada can move an A321LR into this market for daily service. With Airbus related traffic probably filling the front cabin, the economics look promising. As traffic grows, the A330 for daily service becomes possible. The A330 obviously offering better cargo capacity. Being first to market means Air France has to catch up – a decision to unlock the behind Paris market to direct international service to Canada may not go down well on a “Paris-centric” network. Air France’s best response might be Toulouse-Washington to play a similar Airbus card. But Air France does not necessarily have the optimal tool for the route, yet. But like Air Canada selecting the A330 and not going daily provides a reasonable model to copy.
What we are seeing is the next step in the devolution of fortress hubs being used as staging places to disrupt international and overseas markets. Air Canada is moving quickly because first to market is a key step. Air Canada can disrupt Air France to Francophone Quebec. The A220 service from Seattle an San Jose to Montreal is also an aerospace play, connecting the #1 and #3 aeroclusters. San Jose to Toronto offers great onward connections to Europe for the tech industry.
Business yields drive route profitability, and Air Canada has chosen interesting business-centric markets for its latest routes that can siphon traffic from other hubs and should become successful.
Aerocycle Inc.’s latest work in progress doesn’t look like much. The 27-year-old Airbus A310 that’s sitting on the tarmac at Mirabel International Airport is missing both engines, the Air Transat logo has been almost entirely scrubbed off, and one of the cockpit windows is gone.
That’s just how Ron Haber likes it.
“Isn’t this cool?,” Aerocycle’s CEO says as he prepares to board the now-retired Air Transat jet for a quick tour of the interior. “We’ve been working on this aircraft for several months. It’s not a race, and we have to be very cautious as to how we remove parts. This is a very labour-intensive business.”
Haber, who founded St-Jean-sur-Richelieu-based Aerocycle in 2013 to dismantle and recycle planes for Air Transat as part of a pilot project, has reasons to be happy. He has two more planes coming in November and another two set for demolition next spring.
Last month, Aerocycle’s disassembly and demolition operations secured official accreditation from the Washington, D.C.-based Aircraft Fleet Recycling Association — a key seal of approval that allows the company to bid on plane-demolition contracts globally. Its aircraft-parts management operation received a similar nod from the Aviation Suppliers Association, ensuring Aerocycle can store, sell, ship and scrap parts under a strict process.
More than 15,000 aircraft globally will be need to be decommissioned — and dismantled — during the next 15 years because they’ve reached the end of their useful lives, Amsterdam-based SGI Aviation Services said in a May 2018 report prepared for the International Air Transport Association. While most of the world’s industrialized countries have certified companies that disassemble planes under so-called best practices, Canada had none until last month.
“(Certification) allows us to talk to the big boys,” Haber says. “Right now, we’re the only company in Canada that has this kind of accreditation.”
The big boys, in this case, include a quasi-neighbour: Montreal-based Air Canada, which Aerocycle is keen to sign up as a customer.
“Now that we are accredited and certified, it opens up a lot of doors for us,” Haber says. “We’re in discussions with Air Canada for the first time. We’re right in their backyard. I’m anxious to see how this goes.”
This fall, Haber says he plans to travel to Atlanta to meet executives of Delta Air Lines, the second-largest North American carrier by passengers.
“We deal in Canadian dollars, which means a 30-per-cent cost advantage vis-à-vis the U.S., even if you add the fuel and the crew for the ferry flight to Mirabel,” Haber says. “Thankfully, we have a lot of room to expand at Mirabel. This airport is huge. It would be impossible for us to do this in Dorval.”
How does one dismantle an aircraft? In a word, slowly. Haber estimates it takes six to nine months for Aerocycle and its full-time staff of about 15 to take apart a widebody jet such as the Airbus employees are working on now. Up to 93 per cent of the contents of a jet can be recycled, he says — either reused, refurbished or, in the case of metal parts, melted.
The engines are the first to go, usually within the first 10 days, in part because they often belong to a leasing company that wants them back.
“Engines are worth a lot of money,” Haber says. “So that’s the first thing that’s removed, along with the auxiliary power unit at the back. After the engines are gone, we remove the fuel.”
Seats, bins, wires, electronics — everything will be removed until the stripped-down plane is ready to be demolished. At that point, it can be broken up into pieces: first the wings, then the fuselage.
“Every job is unique,” Haber says. “We’re not going to remove the same parts from every aircraft. Maybe one of the engines is not worth sending back because it can’t be reused.”
The upcoming wave of aircraft retirements has got Haber dreaming of expansion. Aerocycle’s medium-term goal is to process at least 15 to 20 aircraft a year, up from a handful now, according to the CEO.
“We figure we will have 60 to 70 employees at that point,” Haber says. “We’ll need to hire like crazy.”
As an aviation fan, Haber also has a more personal objective in mind: serving the Queen of the Skies.
“One of my goals is to get a Boeing 747 in here,” he says. “I’ve been wanting one for a while. We’re currently in discussions for a couple of 747s, which would be fantastic.”
23 August 2019 by Alfred Chua, Singapore, FlightGlobal.com
Rolls-Royce has signed the first Trent 700 engine operator under its hours-based TotalCare Flex support programme.
The agreement with Air Canada covers the airline’s Airbus A330-300s under the hours-based MRO programme developed specifically for mature aircraft owners.
This means the Trent 700 will be the third engine type to come under Roll-Royce’s TotalCare Flex programme, after the Trent 800 and Trent 500 engines.
Cirium fleets data indicate that the Star Alliance carrier has 10 A330-300s in operation. Its oldest aircraft are about 20 years old, and the youngest about 10 years old. Rolls-Royce adds that Air Canada’s Trent 700s have achieved more than 700,000 flying hours.
TotalCare Flex is based on Rolls-Royce’s regular TotalCare support programme, and aims to give aircraft owners and/or leasing owners greater flexibility and control over the engine’s technical support through, for example, employment of used material to reduce maintenance cost as equipment nears the end of its service life.
The first Airbus Defence & Space C295 aircraft due for Canada’s Fixed Wing Search and Rescue Aircraft Replacement (FWSAR) programme has had its maiden flight.
Airbus says that this places the aircraft on track for delivery by the end of 2019, whereupon it will begin operational testing.
The flight took place from Seville, Spain on 4 July, and lasted 1hr 27m.
The 2016 contract covers 16 aircraft as well as support, training, and engineering.
An additional five aircraft are in various stages of assembly. Seven simulators and training devices are also undergoing testing. The first Royal Canadian Air Force crews will head to Spain in the coming months to commence training.
The C295 won the FWSAR deal in December 2016 after a 14-year process. The Airbus type defeated the Leonardo C-27J Spartan and the Embraer KC-390 for the deal. Lockheed Martin had considered proposing the HC-130J, but decided not to enter the final round of the competition.
The 16 C295s will replace six de Havilland Canada CC-155 Buffalos and 13 CC-130H Hercules at four bases spread across Canada, providing search and rescue services from the Arctic to the southern border with the USA.
Air Canada in the first-half of 2020 scheduled Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner service on Toronto – Dublin route, replacing A330-300. From Toronto, the Dreamliner is scheduled to operate from 28 MAR 2020 to 30 APR 2020, once a day.
AC842 YYZ 2255 – 1030+1 DUB 788 D AC843 DUB 1225 – 1450 YYZ 788 D
Airline also boosts TV and movie content by 50 per cent on select aircraft types
New, easy-to-navigate in-flight entertainment system interface, will enable customers to browse in 15 languages, and discover more than 1,000 hours of high quality entertainment – more than any other airline in the Americas
MONTREAL, June 20, 2019 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada announced today that it is expanding its popular in-flight entertainment selection through unique partnerships with Bell Media’s premium entertainment service, Crave, and Canadian-based multi-platform audio service, Stingray. The new offerings are part of an enhancement of the airline’s entertainment system that will increase the content selection by 50 per cent on certain aircraft types, including many of its longest-haul wide-body Boeing 777s and 787s, as well as Air Canada Rouge’s A319s, A321s and Boeing 767s, offering enough content that a customer would have to fly around the world 22 times to consume it all.
Now, customers flying on Air Canada and Air Canada Rouge can enjoy premium Crave content including Vida and The Girlfriend Experience from STARZ, SHOWTIME’s Billions, Ray Donovan, and The Affair, the Crave original comedy Letterkenny and Comedy Central’s Broad City. From Stingray comes a wider range of music content, including concert and music documentaries, music video playlists, artist interviews, award show coverage and introducing Stingray Ambiance, featuring videos of gorgeous destinations set to soothing soundtracks to encourage relaxation. On Air Canada mainline, Stingray audio content will be available in a variety of genres, including pop, country, hip-hop and wellness. As a special introductory offer, Air Canada customers can take advantage of a free three-month trial of Stingray Music, using promotional code AirCanada at www.stingray.com/promo until the end of September.
“Recently, Air Canada was voted the Best Airline for Onboard Entertainment by readers of Global Traveler yet Air Canada’s commitment to service excellence demands that we continually elevate the customer experience. For this reason, we are pleased to announce new partnerships with Crave and Stingray that will significantly enrich our video and music offerings. Air Canada will be the only carrier to offer full seasons of Crave programming, while music lovers will be able to enjoy a much wider array of songs and genres from top artists through Stingray,” said Andrew Yiu, Vice President of Product at Air Canada.
“Additionally, Air Canada is significantly boosting the selection of movies and television shows it currently offers on its newest mainline wide-body and narrow-body aircraft types. These upgrades will give customers, including those on our longest flights, greater choice than ever before, with access to full season boxsets of shows such as How I Met Your Mother, full collections of movie franchises including Harry Potter and the Matrix, more new releases from Disney and expanded content from HBO. To help customers select and manage their entertainment options, we are also progressively introducing a new user interface that will be easier to navigate and available in 15 languages.”
Later this year, increased content will also come to Air Canada’s Airbus A330 fleet with the addition of upgraded servers.
Fun facts about Air Canada’s In-Flight Entertainment System:
To consume all the in-flight entertainment on board Air Canada in June, customers would have to fly Toronto to Hong Kong 72 times or around the world 22.5 times
Over 90 per cent of passengers engage with our in-flight entertainment.
At over 4 hours, the longest movie we have onboard is Cleopatra (1963)
The most watched movie of the year thus far is Bohemian Rhapsody.
About Air Canada
Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline serving nearly 220 airports on six continents. Canada’s flag carrier is among the 20 largest airlines in the world and in 2018 served nearly 51 million customers. Air Canada provides scheduled passenger service directly to 62 airports in Canada, 54 in the United States and 100 in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, Mexico, Central America and South America. Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, the world’s most comprehensive air transportation network serving 1,317 airports in 193 countries. Air Canada is the only international network carrier in North America to receive a Four-Star ranking according to independent U.K. research firm Skytrax, which also named Air Canada the 2019 Best Airline in North America. For more information, please visit: aircanada.com/media, follow @AirCanada on Twitter and join Air Canada on Facebook.
LONGUEUIL, QC, June 17, 2019 /CNW Telbec/ – As a leader in air medical transport across Quebec, Airmedic continues to grow thanks to the purchase of three new fully equipped EC145e® helicopters. The company will rely on the expertise of Airbus, a global leader in aeronautics, and the know-how of Metro Aviation, who will be in charge of the aircrafts’ interior configuration for medical emergency services. Above all, the close to $30M investment will enable Airmedic to deploy aircrafts that have been tailored for air medical transport, known for their versatility and reliability, to support lifesaving missions throughout Quebec.
“We have always been striving to set the standards of our industry, to build a culture of excellence and to capitalize on the most advanced equipment and technologies. Today, we are improving on an already highly performing aircraft fleet with the world’s best aircrafts in order to provide better coverage of the territory, even more strategic dispatching and enhanced services to our clients“, mentions Sophie Larochelle, Executive Vice-President of Airmedic.
“Thanks to the delivery of these Airbus twin-engine EC145e’s, Airmedic will have the additional support required to assist it highly skilled team in providing safe, rapid and extremely specialized emergency medical transport for the critically ill and injured,” said Romain Trapp, President of Airbus Helicopters Canada. “The EC145 family of aircraft has built a reputation as the most proven solution for emergency medical services worldwide. We are very proud of this new partnership and we look forward to supporting the important mission of Airmedic, to provide vital lifesaving services to the residents of Québec.“
Prior to delivery of the aircrafts, Metro Aviation ensured the training of Airmedic pilots and instructors thanks to its flight simulator, which is unique worldwide.
Airmedic has carefully chosen the EC145e® helicopters, which will bring to nine Airmedic’s total number of aircrafts entirely dedicated to emergency medical services. Clearly suited to Quebec’s conditions, these aircrafts particularly stand out for their great flight autonomy that enables them to travel a longer distance without refueling, hence reducing response times. They are recognized for their safety and their larger cabin space that can accommodate two patients at the same time and seat up to 4 passengers, enabling the medical personnel to provide high-quality care.
Aircrafts will be used for both for pre‑hospital and inter‑hospital transport. Their commissioning is scheduled in the next weeks. This major investment is in addition to the 55 million dollars already injected in assets and equipment since 2012.
“We are pleased to participate in the financing of our clients’ projects in the crucial phases of their development. Airmedic continues its impressive trajectory and is investing to further professionalize its practice, increase its efficiency and its deployment, and enhance services to its clientele of individuals, corporate clients and health facilities,” concluded the Assistant Vice President, Business Development at the Business Development Bank of Canada, Mr. Hugo Bisaillon.
Change from C Series Aircraft Limited Partnership (CSALP) reflects Airbus’ majority stake in the A220.
MIRABEL, QC, May 31, 2019 /CNW Telbec/ – The change of name of CSALP to Airbus Canada Limited Partnership, which was announced in March 2019, will come into effect on June 1, 2019.
The new name reflects the majority interest of Airbus in the partnership since July 1, 2018. The partnership is adopting the Airbus logo as its single visual identity.
Over the course of the coming weeks, the new name will be applied to the limited partnership’s documentation, materials and branded items. The Airbus and Bombardier logos will continue to be displayed side-by-side on the building exteriors in Mirabel, reflecting production activities on the site for both the Airbus A220 and Bombardier CRJ aircraft families.
About the limited partnership Headquartered in Mirabel, Québec, the limited partnership is responsible for the development and manufacturing of the Airbus A220 family of single-aisle passenger aircraft. Majority owned by Airbus SE, partners include Bombardier Inc. and Investissement Québec (acting as mandatory for the government of Québec). The limited partnership employs approximately 2,200 at its headquarters and manufacturing facilities in Mirabel. The second A220 manufacturing facility in Mobile, Alabama will start production in the third quarter of 2019.