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COMMERCIAL AVIATION Airbus hopes to deliver the first A320neo to launch customer Qatar Airways by year-end following joint European and U.S. type certification of the initial Pratt & Whitney PW1100G-powered variant on Nov. 24. Approval follows a 350-flight, 1,070-hr. test program including 300 hr. in airline-like operations (page 13).
The expansion of Tianjin Airlines, Airbus’s commitment to set up an A330 completion center in China, and the country’s bulk orders for the Airbus widebody aircraft are connected. The common element is the Tianjin city government.
In November, ESA handed NASA the first tangible evidence of its contribution to the Orion development, a structural test article of the European Service Module (ESM) that in the coming months will undergo rigorous environmental trials.
Poland may upend tenders for Raytheon’s Patriot, Airbus helo; KRET to upgrade Tupolev Tu-160 bomber avionics; U.S. Navy wraps up Fire Scout assessment, demos targeting comms integrated among multiple aircraft.
HNA is the parent of Hainan Airlines and several other carriers in China. It is also the largest private airline group in what many believe will soon be the world’s largest single air transport market. Therefore any HNA acquisitions need to be taken seriously.
The FireSat system will result in revisit times about every 15 min., which begins to approach the warning an experienced firewatcher in a tower can provide firefighters by scanning forest treetops for smoke.
Dearth of AW609 accident coverage noted; skepticism regarding interdependency of P-8A systems; hidden costs of Long-Range Strike Bomber; investment more in hypersonic research; uneven competition has felled many airlines, big and small
Eurofighter has chosen Volker Paltzo (see photo) as its next chief executive officer. Paltzo will take over Jan. 1, 2016, from Alberto Gutierrez, who will now head the Airbus Defense and Space Eurofighter program. Paltzo is currently CEO of Atlas Elektronik based in Bremen, Germany, and was chief operating officer for capabilities at Eurofighter in 2009-11.
Jan. 4-8—AAIA/ASCE/AHS/ASC Structures, Structural Dynamics and Materials Conference. Manchester Grand Hyatt. San Diego. See aiaa-scitech.org/SDM Feb. 2-4—The Unmanned Systems Conference and Exposition. World Forum. The Hague, Netherlands. See tusexpo.com