Following the completion of an extensive R&T phase, an electric taxiing solution, called “eTaxi”, has received ‘Authorisation To Market’ approval by Airbus and Safran, for application on the A320 Family. Depending on the airline feedback, the actual program could subsequently be launched in the near future. eTaxi’s electric motors in the main landing gear, powered by electricity from the APU (auxiliary power unit), would allow an aircraft fitted with it to taxi without using its jet engines or requiring airport tractors or tugs. eTaxi would provide airlines with a sustainable solution which combines savings on operating costs (including a reduction of around four percent in fuel costs, equal to several hundred thousand dollars per aircraft annually), independent movement on the ground (saving around two minutes of time on pushback), as well as ecological advantages such reduced carbon and NOx emissions, and less noise during taxiing.
DHL Express has ordered an additional four firm and 10 optional A330-300 passenger-to-freighter (P2F) conversions from Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW), the joint venture between ST Aerospace and Airbus. This follows the launch contract for four similar A330-300P2F conversions that was also awarded by DHL Express in July last year. The first aircraft under the launch contract is currently undergoing conversion at EFW’s Dresden-based facilities, and is on track to be redelivered by the end of 2017. The A330P2F conversion programme, launched in 2012, is a collaboration between ST Aerospace, Airbus and EFW. ST Aerospace, as the programme and technical lead for the engineering development phase, is responsible for applying for the supplemental type certificates for the freighter conversions, from the European Aviation Safety Agency and the US Federal Aviation Administration. Aircraft OEM Airbus contributes to the programme with OEM data and certification support, while EFW leads the industrialisation phase and marketing for the freighter conversion programme.
Rockwell Collins has been selected by Airbus for the flight operations and maintenance exchanger (FOMAX) program on the Airbus A320 family of aircraft. FOMAX is a compact connectivity unit which collects aircraft maintenance and performance data and automatically sends it to ground-based operations and also to mobile applications used by flight crews. The unit also sends data automatically into efficiency applications such as weather, flight planning, logbooks, maintenance prediction and performance calculators, all of which bring improved new levels of productivity and value to airline operations. The FOMAX architecture facilities the Wi-Fi network for secure crew connectivity on the aircraft, as well as the cellular and terminal Wi-Fi equipment and interfaces with all major SATCOM connectivity types. FOMAX is a key airborne component of Airbus’ Skywise aviation data platform, launched at Le Bourget.
Inmarsat, the world’s leading provider of global mobile satellite communications, has signed a collaborative agreement for its new European Aviation Network (EAN) inflight broadband service with Airbus. Under the strategic partnership, Airbus will offer airlines a specialist retrofit solution to deploy EAN - the world’s first integrated satellite and air-to-ground network dedicated to providing a true in-flight broadband experience for the European aviation industry - on the entire A320 family of aircraft. The Airbus retrofit solution consists of modification kits with all cabin network equipment required for EAN deployment. It also includes service bulletins (SBs) that detail the tasks and materials needed for installation and also certify the airworthiness of related modification work.
Malaysia Airlines has selected Services by Airbus to provide Flight Hour Services (FHS) Components support for its new fleet of six A350 XWB and existing fleet of 18 A330s. These long-term agreements cover guaranteed spare parts availability through an extensive scope of A350 XWB and A330 Line Replaceable Units (LRUs), maintenance and logistics services at Malaysia Airlines’ main base and selected outstations. To ensure continuously the highest level of operational performance, Malaysia Airlines will fully benefit from the FHS pool located in Kuala Lumpur International Airport, managed by Airbus.
JetSMART, a new Chilean low cost airline based in Santiago, has signed a Flight Hour Services - Tailored Support Package (FHS-TSP) contract with Airbus for the provision of full components support and fleet technical management services for its brand new A320 family aircraft. This five-year FHS-TSP contract guarantees spare parts availability through an extensive scope of A320 line replaceable units (LRUs), components repair, transportation and expendables provisioning together with fleet technical management (FTM) services where JetSMART will benefit from Airbus’ experience and expertise to optimise their aircraft maintenance and engineering operations. This latest selection by JetSMART marks an important step in Airbus’ FHS strategy to deploy engineering expertise in Latin America. Airbus FHS contracts have now been selected to cover more than 372 aircraft from operators of A320, A330, A380 and A350 XWB. JetSMART is the Chilean-based, ultra-low-cost carrier that was developed this year by private equity investment firm Indigo Partners LLC. Indigo has over 15 years of experience in global aviation. Currently, it has investments in Wizz Air (Europe), Volaris (Mexico) and Frontier Airlines (United States).
Interjet has become customer for Airbus’ “Maintenance Mobility” including electronic Job Cards and “Predictive Risk Management” services following a contract recently signed with Airbus. Maintenance Mobility with electronic Job Cards allows the airline mechanics to have all of the technical information they need on iPads as well as full electronic job cards with electronic signature, hence effectively eliminating paper in maintenance operations. “Maintenance Mobility” and “Predictive Risk Management” are part of several services in the Smarter Fleet™ cloud-based services platform developed by Airbus. The agreement with Interjet covers the integration of the services into the airline’s information systems, including the maintenance information system (MIS), as well as the software and data hosting. The deployment will be accomplished step-by-step with Airbus experts working on-site with Interjet in order to spread the integration and manage change gradually.
French aviation school ENAC, together with Institut MERMOZ are partnering to provide a single theoretical ATPL (Airline Transport Pilot Licence) offer, for phases 1 & 2 of a cadet’s flight training curriculum, a major part of the flight training. The agreement supersedes their previously individual ATPLs textbooks collections with one brand new collection, taking the best practices from both. ENAC and Institut MERMOZ will also offer fully fledged e-learning services for theoritical ATPL. Airbus provides its aircraft images, logos and schemas within this ATPL, and has demonstrated its support by allowing them to state ‘in co-operation with Airbus’ and use the Airbus logo on the cover.
On the occasion of the annual Airbus Suppliers Awards ceremony at the Paris Air Show, Airbus distributed Awards and Certificates to Systems & Equipment suppliers. Five suppliers obtained the top award: Airbus (avionics), Rockwell Collins (avionics), Thales avionics, Airbus (cabin electronics) / Kid-Systeme and Crane Aerospace. Their respective high performances were identified through Airbus’ annual Supplier Support Rating process, which this year captured in-service feedback from over 150 Airbus customers. Airbus takes the rating feedback as a basis to drive the suppliers’ support improvements by ensuring dedicated actions are launched by the suppliers. This benefits the operators of Airbus fleet all over the world. The next rating cycle will be launched in January 2018.
Services by Airbus has launched a new dedicated portal designed for customers, available from any devices at the following address: services.airbus.com. Complementing Services by Airbus’ portfolio of products and services and the latest news, the portal allows customers to request a booking of a dry Full-Flight Simulator session or e-training. In the future the portal will also offer a private function to optimise services delivery by enabling eCommerce and a dashboard capacity.
With the upcoming ICAO mandate leading to full Global Aeronautical Distress Safety System (GADSS) capability by 2021, NAVBLUE, the Airbus Flight Ops and ATM services company, reinforces its partnership with Flightradar24, following the last two years successful collaboration together, to provide aircraft operators with an innovative flight tracking solution, called N-Tracking. N-Tracking integrates different sources of information to track aircraft in the world based on the Flightradar24 ground receivers and ACARS. The solution will provide alerts in case of critical aircraft operations and a collaborative decision making information system for dispatcher to manage airport congestions, delays and turnarounds. NAVBLUE offering and all the industry will benefit in the near future from the Airbus collaboration with Spire and Flightradar24 to develop a surveillance digital eco-system fusing space and ground data to provide near real time global data.
NAVBLUE has signed a MoU with Aviolinx, a Swedish-based company specialised in software, communications and services to the airline industry, to appoint NAVBLUE as an exclusive resell partner for its solution called “RAIDO” – an airline management system. RAIDO covers aspects of airline management processes and handles the entire end-to-end planning and operation process in one single application using multi source of information and one database. RAIDO caters to types of airline business models, from national to low cost carriers, enabling airlines to efficiently manage operations and crew resources in both the long and short term. With RAIDO as a complement to NAVBLUE’s crew and flight-planning applications, NAVBLUE offers the state-of-the-art applications for Operation Control Centers to manage efficiently operations and giving operators the edge over the competition.
NAVBLUE has signed a MoU with OpenAirlines, a Toulouse-based company, to become a reseller partner for its solution called Skybreathe, a comprehensive fuel preservation solution for airlines. Skybreathe uses Big Data algorithms and automatically analyses the large amount of available data in flight data recorders to assess flights’ efficiency. Results of the analysis are displayed into an intuitive interface accessible from desk computer, laptops, tablets and mobile. Skybreathe will constitute the Optimize module of the Analytics by NAVBLUE suite, which will help operators to save more than two percent of fuel.