Ernest S. Arvai
Britain, which by not adopting the Euro and not participating in the Schengen travel zone, was the most independent member of the EU, has voted to invoke Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and leave the EU. This certainly provides some uncertainty in the near term, as Britain will now need to make arrangements for economic and trade relationships bi-laterally, as they once were. This certainly shouldn’t become a problem, and Britain may, like Switzerland, be able to reach a free trade agreement with the EU without becoming a member.
Of course, there may be some short-term panic regarding the potential implications of Brexit, driven by speculation and fear-mongering, in the near and long-term, there shouldn’t be a substantial impact on aviation. Rolls-Royce will still be the sole provider of engines for the A350 and A330neo, as there are simply no alternatives in the near-term, and it… Continue reading
A mission to bring a sick worker at the Amudsen-Scott South Pole Station back from Antarctica for medical treatment was successful concluded. That patient, and another patient that while not in as serious condition was also evacuated to mitigate risk, arrived safely in Chile for medical treatment unavailable at the research station.
The aircraft used to complete this risky flight were DeHavilland Twin Otters, which are powered by the legendary Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6 turboprop engines. The aircraft were fitted with skis to land on the unimproved runway, where special precautions were taken during the long South Pole winter that provides complete darkness from March to September, and temperatures can reach 70 degrees below zero.
One Twin Otter remained at the Rothera British base 1,500 miles away from the pole on the Antarctic peninsula while the other flew the rescue mission. The reserve aircraft was there in… Continue reading
Brazil just approved 100% foreign ownership of airlines, up from the previous maximum of 20%. This presents an opportunity for foreign carriers to increase investment in a currently troubled economy with strong future potential. Currently the Brazilian airline industry is troubled, along with the Brazilian economy. Domestic air traffic declined by 8.2% during the first five months of 2016 when compared with 2015, and airline losses are mounting.
This combination of circumstances — airlines with lower values in a market that appears to be at a cyclical nadir — provides the opportunity to acquire strong assets at low prices. As an important node for global networks and alliances, this presents an opportunity for airlines looking to strengthen their presence in Brazil.
Domestically, the four major players account for nearly all of the traffic, as shown in the chart below:
Let’s examine the potential suitors and candidates.… Continue reading
Viking Aircraft, which currently produces the Twin Otter, has acquired the type certificate and production rights to the CL-415 Water-Bomber from Bombardier, as well as the aftermarket rights and type certificates for the earlier CL-215 and CL-215T water-bombers. This is an ideal fit for Viking, which earlier acquired the rights for multiple de Havilland models from Bombardier, ranging from the DH-1 Chipmunk to the DH-7 STOL commuter aircraft.
Currently, Viking produces the Twin Otter 400 and has delivered more than 100 aircraft to 29 countries since launching that model in 2007. Can it do the same with the water-bomber?
There is certainly a need for water-bombers, as forest fires continue to erupt annually in North America during the summer, and Australia during their summer. The advantage of the water-bomber is that it can quickly re-load by “scooping” water from a river or lake, mix that water with… Continue reading
With the recent first flight of the Embraer E2-190, it was an appropriate time to get update the progress of the E2 development program. We we fortunate to have an opportunity to speak with Luis Carlos Affonso, SVP – Operations and COO – Commercial at Embraer regarding the E2 program and its progress.
The company undertook what appeared to be a remarkable first flight – the E-190 E2 ticked a lot of boxes on that flight; maximum altitude, maximum speed and host of other items. In terms of first flight this may have been a unique activity. It certainly demonstrated remarkable confidence on the part of the company and its test crew.
- We began by asking Luis Carlos about his reaction to the first flight.
“We were very pleased that the first flight was able to complete 100% of the test cards successfully. This was the… Continue reading
Air travel is a very safe mode of travel, with few accidents and a trend line that points to increasing safety year by year. The following chart shows worldwide airline fatalities per million passengers from 1976 through 2014. The trend line shows that safety is continuing to improve for the industry as a whole. Continue reading