Briefs From Farnborough—Day One

Credit: Boeing

Boeing Wins RAF Air-Transport Optimization Contract

The Royal Air Force's air transport fleet will have access to Boeing's integrated suite of digital flight-planning, performance and management tools under a new deal announced at the Royal International Air Tattoo. C-17, Lockheed Martin C-130J and Airbus A400M crews will be able to access electronic flight bags hosted on MODNet iPads, running Boeing's Jeppesen FliteDeck Pro X application, as the RAF continues its push toward a paperless cockpit. The technology is already being used by the RAF's A330 Voyager fleet and by the Red Arrows team, and enables crews to optimize flight operations and use less fuel.  

Airlines Could Cut Costs with Carbon-Free Taxiing System

Airports can cut carbon emissions by 10%, saving airlines millions in fuel bills annually, if they install a new system being developed by Oklahoma-based Aircraft Towing Systems Worldwide (ATS). The company is proposing an electric system where pilots would engage the nosewheel in a dolly, which then moves the aircraft to its gate via a below-ground monorail channel. The modular system can be used for pushback, between points on an airfield, or as a full system taking airplanes between runway and gate. Citing figures from Chicago O'Hare International Airport, ATS says installing its system there would save operators $460 million per year. ATS is in the Oklahoma Pavilion, Hall 2, stand 3422.

PPG Partners with Aerobrand for One-Stop Design-and-Paint Solution  

British consultancy Aerobrand and U.S.-headquartered coatings specialist PPG (stand 1140) have announced a partnership that combines paint supply with livery design, enabling customers to increase speed, reduce cost, and integrate custom colors into their preferred designs when giving aircraft a new coating. The service will be provided at PPG's Livery Lab facilities in Burbank, California, and Shildon, England. "Our partnership with Aerobrand will prove invaluable for our customers on many levels," says Sam Millikin, PPG's global director for aerospace coatings and sealants. Other benefits will include cost estimates with paint volume requirements included, leading to reduced waste and cost.

Big-Hearted Aerospace Firms to Give Chalet Experience to Ill Children

A number of the Farnboroush Airshow's hospitality chalets will be turned over to ill and disabled children and their families on Friday, July 22, when the Barrie Wells Trust brings its Box4Kids initiative to Farnborough for the third time. The UK-wide scheme secures executive and hospitality boxes from donor firms at major entertainment events, and gives families struggling with life-limiting conditions "the chance to feel like a VIP for the day," the charity says. Companies participating include Accenture, Embraer, ATI and Deutsche Aircraft.   

L3Harris Selected as Training Provider for New Bangladesh Airline

Bangladeshi startup Air Astra has selected L3Harris Technologies as its pilot training provider. The carrier plans to start domestic commercial operations across its network in September. L3Harris Technologies will provide type-rating and recurrent certification training for the airline’s ATR 72-600s through 2026. The training will be undertaken at L3Harris’ Bangkok Training Center. "As a new airline, ensuring the highest quality of training and safety across our operations couldn’t be more important," says Air Astra CEO Imran Asif.  

Blue Bear Partners with Arqit to Demonstrate Quantum Encrypted UAV Comms

British uncrewed and autonomous systems specialist Blue Bear has announced the successful demonstration of quantum-encrypted communications between multiple aircraft during two mock ISR (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) missions flown June 28 and July 12. Arqit's QuantumCloud technology was hosted on Blue Bear's Smart Connect avionics system. "With authentication on a continuous basis, even if an asset becomes compromised it can be deactivated in real time. This has not been seen before," says Blue Bear CEO Yoge Patel. "Our demonstration with Arqit represents a milestone development in the security of crewed and uncrewed applications."  

Thales Supplies First High-Speed WiFi on a U.S. ULCC  

Thales's FlytLIVE has been installed by U.S.-based ultra-low-cost-carrier (ULCC) Spirit Airlines across its Airbus A320 and A321 fleets. The carrier says this marks the first time an airline in its market segment has offered these amenities to passengers, and that, when its network is connected to the SES-17 satellite in September, it will offer the fastest Wi-Fi service of any U.S.-based airline. "The system's reliability and performance is getting rave reviews from Spirit's passengers, who can now stream to their heart's content," says TK Kallenbach, Thales' InFlyt Experience CEO.  

Orbis UK Selected as FIA2022 Charity Partner  

The Farnborough Airshow has made Orbis UK, the international sight-loss charity, its charity partner for 2022. The charity offers treatment for avoidable sight loss and blindness through hospital-based work and also operates the Orbis Flying Eye Hospital (FEH), a state-of-the-art ophthalmic training facility onboard an MD-10 aircraft. The FEH first flew 40 years ago, but Orbis has continued to innovate. During the air show the charity will showcase surgical simulation technology from FundamentalVR, and Cybersight, its telemedicine platform. Demonstrations take place on stand 3926 on Monday and Tuesday, July 18 and 19.     

Alan Dron

Based in London, Alan is Europe & Middle East correspondent at Air Transport World.