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Lufthansa celebrated the “roll-in” of its new Airbus A350-900 aircraft, and was kind enough to invite AirInsight to its celebration.  Videos of the speeches and christening ceremony, in German, will be available in separate posts on our site.

The celebration was held in Munich because the first 10 of the 25 A350s Lufthansa has on order will be based in Munich, with initial flights starting this month to Boston and Delhi.  After experiencing the event, with more than 2,000 people in a Lufthansa Technik hangar that was noisy enough that you needed to speak loudly to your neighbor, the flight out of a quiet Munich airport, and how the A350 will reduce noise nearby the airport, will be striking. Continue reading

Talks between Lufthansa and pilot union Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) ended without agreement.  The latest talks, set to be completed by January 31, were led by mediator Gunter Pleuger. Herr Pleuger now will submit a conciliation recommendation to the parties by February 10.  Earlier talks seemed to go nowhere.  This is a long simmering disagreement.

The VC union said in a statement that both sides have “agreed on the content and course of conciliation”.  The union wants a 3.7% average pay increase for each of the last five years. Lufthansa has offered a 4.4% increase in two stages and a one-off payment equivalent to 1.8 months salary. VC previously turned that offer down. Continue reading

Lufthansa and CFM International are celebrating the achievement of 100,000 flight hours by one of the airline’s CFM56-5C engines more than 20 years after Lufthansa took delivery of its first Airbus A340-300.  The airline was the launch customer for the CFM56-5C-powered A340 and put the first aircraft into revenue service in February 1993.  Lufthansa currently operates 18 CFM-powered A340 aircraft.

The engine (ESN 740146) entered commercial service with Lufthansa on November 16, 1993 on one of the first Airbus A340 aircraft delivered.  Over the course of its service life, the engine has been fully overhauled four times at Lufthansa Technik. Lufthansa reports: “The engine with the serial number ESN 740146 began its career on November 16, 1993 on one of the first aircraft of the then newly developed long-haul type, the Airbus A340. The engine was first used in position 3 (inside right) on the Lufthansa A340-200 D-AIBF (“Bravo Foxtrott”, MSN… Continue reading

It has taken a long time to get here, but things may be moving faster than many realize.  Bombardier has, for a long time, spoken of bombardier_logothe CSeries target customers “waiting in the wings”.  It was an awkward statement, because those hiding in the wings did it very well and for far longer than anyone expected. Most of all Bombardier.

2016 has been a far happier time, even if it has been expensive.  Air Canada and then Delta selected the CSeries.  Meanwhile it appears Bombardier is going to get government support, even though this will attract the attention of competitors who will almost certainly reach for the WTO stick.

In 2015 Bloomberg had a story about a key CSeries target, jetBlue.  The story indicates the fragile nature of any discussions, with “no comment” from both sides.   Back in 2013, jetBlue had voiced concerns about their E-190 costs.  This concern points… Continue reading

There are two great Lockheed Constellation restoration projects being undertaken.  (Hello Red Bull, are you paying attention?) We are big Connie fans.

Project #1: Columbine

1143492391_4284f7ba61_mWe first got to see this magnificent aircraft (Columbine I) in August 2008 at the Pima Museum in Arizona.  If you have even a passing interest in aviation, put this place on your bucket list.    This aircraft was used by General Dwight Eisenhower.  Then came Columbine II, and was used by President Dwight Eisenhower.  This was the first Air Force One.  This aircraft is now on its way to Virginia for restoration.  Last year the process of engine tests was undertaken, as the next video shows. Continue reading

As Pratt & Whitney’s new engine starts to operate it is interesting to review its long gestation.   The start of the GTF goes far back to an engine few recall, named the “SuperFan”.  This engine was sold to Airbus for the first A340.  It is rare to find an image of the original SuperFan engine.  One of the original program’s members shared this drawing with us.


Early and critical work done by Howard Stryker and the IAE team on the SuperFan in the mid-80’s should not be forgotten.

In the early 1980s Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce entered into a joint venture, named International Aero Engines (IAE).  The goal of this JV was to develop an all new, mid-size, turbofan aero-engine.  The JV included Pratt & Whitney, Rolls-Royce, a consortium of Japanese companies, Fiat of Italy and MTU of Germany.  The headquarters of the new company was located in Pratt’s backyard,… Continue reading

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