Emirates Aviation University signs MoU with Lufthansa Technik Middle East

Emirates Aviation University signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Lufthansa Technik Middle East to collaborate on opportunities in the aviation sector.

Under the MoU, Emirates Aviation University and Lufthansa Technik Middle East will spearhead initiatives that provide work experience opportunities within the field of engineering and aircraft maintenance.  Lufthansa Technik Middle East will work with Emirates Aviation University’s (EAU) School of Engineering to develop cooperative learning objectives, facilitate student learning through guest speaking opportunities and seminars, share industry


MEKCO partners with Donica

Miami-based MRO provider MEKCO Group has entered a strategic partnership with Donica to become its dealer and authorized repair facility for in-flight entertainment and connectivity (IFEC) equipment sales and repairs.

MEKCO will install, distribute and provide repair management for Donica’s product line, including ‘plug and play’ products for legacy aircraft, which the company says will help customers avoid costly aircraft modifications.

The company's existing capabilities include IFE and IFEC repairs, in-cabin electronics & electromechanical repairs along with  in-cabin interiors services for plastics, composites and panel adjustments.


Turkish Technic wins UIA, NordWind MRO contracts

Turkish Technic, a supplier of aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services, and a subsidiary of the country’s flagship carrier Turkish Airlines, has won new contracts from Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) and Russia’s NordWind.

For UIA, the maintenance provider will carry out MRO work on the airline’s two Boeing 767 wide-bodies. The Ukrainian carrier currently operates four aircraft of the type, but plans to dispense with them when their lease terms expire from 2019. UIA has already begun replacing them with Boeing 777s, and says it is considering setting up capabilities for maintaining that type in-house.



SR Technics expands its line maintenance capabilities in the UK

SR Technics, a world leading MRO service provider, recently announced that it has expanded its line maintenance capabilities at its line stations in the United Kingdom to support the latest Airbus A330neo and Airbus A350 types.

 In addition, SR Technics line stations at Belfast, Bristol, Edinburgh, Glasgow, London-Gatwick, London-Heathrow, London-Stansted and Manchester, have now been joined by East Midlands airport, further expanding the MRO’s portfolio to meet customer’s flight network. 


Raytheon to develop US Army laser

Raytheon Company is developing a 100 kW class laser weapon system preliminary design for integration onboard the Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles. This is a $10 million U.S. Army's High Energy Laser Tactical Vehicle Demonstration program contract.

HEL TVD, a U.S. Army science and technology demonstration program, is part of the Army's Indirect Fire Protection Capability Increment 2 initiative.


Australia to purchase six military aircraft worth $5b

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced recently that the Australian government would purchase six Northrop Grumman MQ-4C Triton unmanned surveillance aircraft.

The initial investment in the Triton capability is AU$1.4 billion (US $1.03 billion), which includes AU$200 million to enter into a cooperative development program with the US Navy; and AU$364 million for major infrastructure works at two Royal Australian Air Force bases.

The total cost of the deal, including whole of life sustainment costs, is estimated to be AU$6.9 billion Australian dollars (US $5.1 billion).

The first aircraft will be delivered in 2023 and the last in 2025. They will be based at RAAF Base Edinburgh in South Australia and at Tindal in the Northern Territory, but are also likely to be forward deployed to other airfields around the continent, including a string of bare bases to the north and northwest.


South Korea unveils preliminary designs of KF-X aircraft

Korea’s arms acquisition agency unveiled recently the preliminary design of the KF-X fighter aircraft, nearly 30 months after the launch of the indigenous fighter development program in January 2016.

The disclose of the preliminary KF-X design came after the Defense Acquisition Program Administration, or DAPA, held a preliminary design review, or PDR, between June 26 and June 28 of the 4.5-generation twin-engine jet to decide whether to proceed to the next phase of critical design review, or CDR.


Lockheed Martin’s JAGM achieves milestone C

Lockheed Martin's Joint Air-to-Ground Missile (JAGM) system has successfully passed its Defense Acquisition Board review and achieved milestone C. The signed Acquisition Decision Memorandum approves the JAGM system to enter into Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP).

JAGM is a multi-sensor air-to-ground missile that is the successor to the combat proven HELLFIRE Romeo and HELLFIRE Longbow missiles. Backward compatible with all rotary wing and fixed wing platforms that fire the HELLFIRE® family of missiles, JAGM employs a multi-mode guidance section that offers enhanced performance on the battlefield. The multimode seeker combines improved Semi-Active Laser and millimeter wave radar sensors providing precision strike and fire-and-forget capability against stationary and moving land and maritime targets in adverse weather and obscured battlefield conditions.


Nepal Airlines takes delivery of its first wide-body aircraft

Nepal Airlines has taken delivery of the first of two A330s, which it will lease from Portuguese lessor Hi Fly. These will be in addition to its two existing A320ceos, and will be one of the largest aircraft operating out of Tribhuvan International Airport.  Situated at high altitude, only the most sophisticated of aircraft are capable of operating from this location, which is Nepal’s gateway to destinations in the rest of Asia and beyond.  

The A330 is the most popular wide-body aircraft ever, having won over 1,700 orders from 119 customers worldwide. Today, over 1,300 A330s are in service with 124 airlines, flying on everything from high-density domestic and regional operations to long range intercontinental routes.


Vallair leases three Airbus A321s to Onur Air

Vallair, the aircraft trading, leasing and specialist MRO organization has completed lease transactions for three Airbus A321 aircraft with Onur Air in Turkey.

The first of these three aircraft (MSN 974), purchased from AerCap together with its engines, was delivered to Onur Air in May with a lease term of 18 months. The second aircraft (MSN 968), also purchased from AerCap, is being leased as an airframe only and was delivered to Turkey at the start of June. The final aircraft (MSN 835), purchased from Aviation Capital Group (ACG), was also leased to Onur Air as an airframe only and is part of an acquisition release novation contract completed in April with a short-term lease of 6 months. In addition to these three aircraft, Onur Air are also in possession of a V2500-A5 engine under lease with Vallair.


TrueNoord closes purchase of two Embraer aircrafts from GECAS

TrueNoord, the regional aircraft lessor, has closed the purchase of two Embraer E190 aircraft from GECAS.  These aircraft are under lease with and operated by Mandarin Airlines. This pair of aircraft increases TrueNoord’s Embraer fleet under lease to seventeen globally operated E190s.  The purchase was partially financed under a finance facility by BNP Paribas and DVB Bank. Pillsbury and Stek acted as legal advisers for TrueNoord throughout the transaction.

Mandarin Airlines is based in Taipei, Taiwan and operates domestic and regional international flights.  It introduced the Embraer E190 to its fleet in June 2007 and currently operates six E190s on domestic, cross-strait and international routes delivering state of the art services to their customers with modern flight systems, cabin comfort and space, and a quiet flight experience.


Textron completes sales of tools and test businesses to Emerson

Textron recently announced that it has completed the sale of its Tools & Test businesses and brands to Emerson, a global technology and engineering company, for approximately $810 million in cash. Included in the sale were all the Textron Tools & Test businesses and brands – Greenlee, Greenlee Communications, Greenlee Utility, HD Electric, Klauke, Sherman+Reilly, and Endura. Proceeds from the sale are expected to be used to fund additional share repurchases to offset the earnings impact related to the sale.


New PC-24 private jet designed for short runways

PlaneSense has been offering fractional ownership of aircraft for more than two decades.

But this year, it became the first company to offer a PC-24, an eight-seat private jet that can land on some of the shortest runways in the USA. It can get into the smallest airports in the country.

“We can get the closest to any destination while at the same time offering the speed and comfort of a mid-size or larger jet,” says George Antoniadis, the CEO of PlaneSense.



Seagrim, Walter launch Planet Nine

James Seagrim and Matt Walter have launched Planet Nine a new on-demand private- jet charter company operating Dassault Falcon 7X. It will start with one aircraft and aims to have four 7Xs by the end of the year. It will also manage other types for aircraft owners.

“We have been supporting their team closely over the six months since the company’s formation and are thrilled that their mainstay aircraft choice is the Falcon 7X,” said Jean Rosanvallon, CEO of Dassault Falcon Jet.

Walter and Seagrim ran Advanced Air Management in California before it was acquired by Zetta Jet in 2016. The pair then fell out with Zetta Jet’s co-founder Geoffrey Cassidy which led to the operating filing for bankruptcy.


Developing first-class MRO solutions in the industry

Risto Mäeots, CEO of Magnetic MRO, has been in the MRO industry for 11 years now, excluding his education years in aviation. He had graduated from Estonia Aviation Academy, followed by MSc in Engineering at Tallinn Technical University. His professional career includes different positions at Magnetic MRO, varying from aircraft technician to several post-holder positions. Risto Mäeots has been involved in many historical projects in the company, including the expansion of capabilities and infrastructure, establishment of new approvals, development and execution of strategy.

“One of the recent accomplishments which brought a certain ‘sense of achievement’ was the successful completion of Magnetic MRO shares sales from private equity owner to Hangxin. It was an intense process; in terms of transaction size it was the biggest Chinese investment in Estonia and most importantly, it paved a road for further growth potential.” Mäeots told Aviation Guide.


Thales wins ESA study contract to investigate the history of Universe

Thales Alenia Space, the joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), announced recently that it has won a contract from the European Space Agency (ESA) for the Phase A study of LISA (Laser Interferometer Space Antenna), the third ‘large-class’ mission in ESA's Cosmic Vision 2015-25 Program.

LISA will be the first space-based gravitational wave observatory. Its major aim is the detection of gravitational waves, ripples in the fabric of space-time created by large and dense celestial bodies with very strong gravity – such as black holes – that move with accelerated motion, as predicted by Albert Einstein's theory of general relativity. The mission will give scientists a completely new view of the cosmos compared with traditional observation techniques, and will hopefully help unveil some of its many mysteries.