Opinion: Industry ignores passenger voices at its peril [feedly]

martes, 21 de mayo de 2019

Opinion: Industry ignores passenger voices at its peril

 -- via my feedly newsfeed



press release

SAVANNAH, Georgia, May 18, 2019 — Gulfstream Aerospace Corp., an industry leader in sustainability, today announced it has set another city-pair speed record on sustainable alternative jet fuel. The record, achieved Friday by the Gulfstream G550™, connected Charleston, South Carolina, with Farnborough, England, a distance of 3,591 nautical miles/6,651 kilometers, at an average speed of Mach 0.85 in 7 hours and 13 minutes.

The city-pair record, along with a G550 demonstration flight on SAJF today to Geneva for next week’s European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition, is part of a second industry event designed to promote the development and adoption of SAJF. The first took place in January in Van Nuys, California.

“Our record-breaking flight on the G550 is another example of our aircraft’s continued high performance with SAJF,” said Mark Burns, president, Gulfstream. “We first used SAJF in June 2011 to cross the Atlantic on a G450 and have used it since 2016 with our corporate, demonstration, Customer Support and flight-test aircraft. This is a fuel that we use in Savannah and the fuel that we recommend – and sell – to our customers in Long Beach, California. It is safe, approved, does not hinder aircraft performance and provides a long-term benefit to the environment.

“As an industry, we must continue to promote SAJF and its benefits and collaborate to find a solution for the infrastructure and economic challenges that impede widespread use of the fuel around the world.”

In February, Gulfstream had its first sale and delivery of SAJF to a Gulfstream operator. The customer, a U.S.-based multinational corporation, purchased 20,000 pounds of SAJF from Gulfstream’s Long Beach facility for its G550.

This month, Gulfstream is expected to begin regular sales of SAJF to customers in Long Beach. It will also start using SAJF to power large-cabin completion flights departing from Long Beach Airport. California-based World Energy, which has a refinery approximately 10 miles from Long Beach Airport, refines the SAJF provided by World Fuel Services.

The Federal Aviation Administration has confirmed SAJF is safe to use, and Gulfstream has proven that by flying nearly 800,000 nm/1.5 million km and setting five city-pair records on SAJF. SAJF meets the same fuel specification as conventional Jet-A and offers at least the same performance and safety standards. Each gallon of fuel burned achieves more than a 50 percent reduction in C02 emissions, relative to petroleum-based jet fuel, on a lifecycle basis.

Gulfstream’s sustainability strategy helps support industry goals established by the NBAA, the General Aviation Manufacturers Association and the International Business Aviation Council. In addition to the goal of carbon-neutral growth by 2020, the industry’s targets include an improvement in fuel efficiency and reduction in total carbon dioxide emissions.

Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), designs, develops, manufactures, markets, services and supports the world’s most technologically advanced business-jet aircraft. Gulfstream has produced more than 2,800 aircraft for customers around the world since 1958. To meet the diverse transportation needs of the future, Gulfstream offers a comprehensive fleet of aircraft, comprising the Gulfstream G280TM, the Gulfstream G550TM, the Gulfstream G500TM, the Gulfstream G600TM, the Gulfstream G650TM and the Gulfstream G650ERTM. We invite you to visit our website for more information and photos at www.gulfstreamnews.com.

More information about General Dynamics is available at www.generaldynamics.com.


EBACE 2019



Airbus Seeing Value of 3D Printed Parts [feedly]

Airbus Seeing Value of 3D Printed Parts

 -- via my feedly newsfeed


Rolls-Royce Now Training Engineers With VR [feedly]

Rolls-Royce Now Training Engineers With VR

 -- via my feedly newsfeed


ANALYSIS: Electric flight rules in cruise [feedly]

ANALYSIS: Electric flight rules in cruise

 -- via my feedly newsfeed


Air Force successfully tests Combat Support Innovation | Putin wants to buy 76 Su-57 by 2028 | China to commission New Aircraft Carrier [feedly]

Air Force successfully tests Combat Support Innovation | Putin wants to buy 76 Su-57 by 2028 | China to commission New Aircraft Carrier

 -- via my feedly newsfeed


Lilium reveals new air taxi as it celebrates maiden flight

press release & photos

Lilium Jet is the world’s first all-electric jet-powered five-seater air taxi
Capable of traveling up to 300km in just 60 minutes, with zero operating emissions
Lilium will manufacture and operate the Lilium Jet as part of a revolutionary on-demand air taxi service

Munich 16 May 2019: Lilium, the Munich-based startup developing a revolutionary on- demand air taxi service, today revealed its new five-seater air taxi prototype for the first time. The unveiling of the new Lilium Jet came as the all-electric aircraft completed its maiden flight in the skies over Germany earlier this month.

The full-scale, full-weight prototype is powered by 36 all-electric jet engines that allow it to take-off and land vertically, while achieving remarkably efficient horizontal, or cruise, flight. The simplicity of the aircraft design, with no tail, no rudder, no propellers, no gearbox and only one moving part in the engine not only contributes to the safety and affordability of the aircraft, but it has also allowed the design team to focus their efforts on creating a magical customer experience in the cabin, from panoramic windows to gull-wing doors.

Celebrating the landmark, Daniel Wiegand, co-founder and CEO, said: “Today we are taking another huge step towards making urban air mobility a reality. In less than two years we have been able to design, build and successfully fly an aircraft that will serve as our template for mass production. Moving from two to five seats was always our ambition as it enables us to open up the skies to many more travelers. Whether its friends or families flying together or business travelers ride-sharing into the city, having five seats delivers an economy of scale you just can’t achieve with two. The Lilium Jet itself is beautiful and we were thrilled to see it take to the skies for the first time. With the perfect balance of range and speed, our aircraft has the potential to positively impact the way people choose to live and travel, all over the world.”

With a top speed of 300 km/h and a range of 300km, the Lilium Jet is capable of completing much longer journeys than the majority of its competitors. This is, in part, thanks to the fixed wing design of the aircraft. While drone-based aircraft consume much of their energy keep- ing an aircraft in the air, the Lilium Jet can rely on the lift generated by the fixed wing to do this, meaning it will require less than ten percent of its maximum 2000 horsepower during cruise flight. This efficiency, which is comparable to the energy usage of an electric car over the same distance, means the aircraft would not just be capable of connecting suburbs to city centers and airports to main train stations, but would also deliver affordable high-speed connections across entire regions.

The Lilium Jet first took to the air at 08.03 local time on 4th May 2019, having completed extensive ground testing at Lilium’s HQ in Munich, Germany. The prototype aircraft, which is controlled remotely from the ground, has since begun a rigorous flight test campaign that will prove its capability and lay the foundations for certification of the aircraft to safety standards comparable to those of large commercial aircraft.

Commenting on the successful first flight, Leandro Bigarella, Head of Flight Test, said: “While a maiden flight is always a moment of truth for a business, the Lilium Jet performed exactly as expected and responded well to our inputs. Our flight test program will now continue with increasingly complex maneuvers as we look towards our next big goal of achieving transition flight, which is when the aircraft moves seamlessly from vertical to horizontal flight.”

Lilium plans to manufacture and operate the Lilium Jet as part of a revolutionary on-demand air taxi service. At the push of a button, passengers will be able to use the Lilium app to locate their nearest landing pad and plan their journey with ease. Choosing from a network of pads across cities and regions, passengers will enjoy journeys that are comparable in price with a taxi, yet four times faster. Lilium expects to be fully-operational in various cities around the world by 2025, although trial services will start earlier than this in several locations.

Commenting on Lilium’s vision for urban air mobility, Wiegand added: “We dream of a world where anyone can fly wherever they want, whenever they want. We’ve invested a tremendous amount of thought and care into designing an aircraft and a service that will let us deliver this, meeting society’s demands for urban air travel that is quiet, safe and environ- mentally positive. Getting to this point has meant tackling some of aerospace’s greatest challenges, but now we’re here we can focus on bringing our vision to life and connecting communities in ways they have never been connected before. Whether it’s reducing the need for investment in ground-based infrastructure like road or rail, or opening up new areas to economic opportunities, we believe that urban air mobility has the potential to be a remarkable force for good in society and we look forward to working across our sector to achieve this.”

The latest five-seater Lilium Jet builds on the successful flight testing of a two-seater prototype in 2017. The two-seater prototype provided proof of concept for Lilium’s signature transition flight maneuver, where the aircraft shifts from vertical to horizontal flight, and laid the groundwork for today’s prototype.

The five-seater prototype will now enter a rigorous flight test campaign that will see it demonstrate its full range of capabilities.


A tiny four-winged robotic insect flies more like the real thing




Transcend Air and Lily Helipads team up to build eco-friendly "vertipads" for air taxis

US firms plan to build floating landing pads for plane-copter hybrid by 2024

Aiming to give travellers an alternative to airports, two US companies, Transcend Air Corporation and Lily Helipads, have teamed up to offer floating landing pads for Transcend’s vertical take-off air taxis, which are in development.
read more

Transcend Partnering With Lily on Barge Vertiports

Transcend Air and Lily Helipads are partnering to build barge-based vertipads adjacent to city centers including Boston, New York, Montreal, and San Francisco. Formed in 2017, Transcend plans to build and fly the $3.5 million, six-seat Vy 400 vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft and launch service in 2024 from markets including Boston and New York.
read more

Transcend Air and Lily Helipads team up to build eco-friendly "vertipads" for air taxis

It was about a year ago that we first heard about Transcend Air Corporation's Vy 400, a planned vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) six-seater aircraft that will ferry passengers in and out of cities. Now, the Boston-based company has announced plans for floating environmentally-friendly landing pads for the aircraft.
read more

Transcend Air and Lily Helipads announce zero-emission landing spots

A network of low-impact vertipads will be located on the water adjacent to city centers, including in Boston Harbor, around the island of Manhattan, on Montreal’s riverfront, and in San Francisco Bay. It is all part of Transcend Air’s plan for sustainable mobility.
read more

Zero-Emission Landing Spots Announced by Transcend Air and Lily Helipads

"Transcend Air will address multiple problems involving congestion, traffic, and pollution caused by our current transportation system," said Transcend Air founder and CEO Gregory Bruell. "By bringing vertipads close to travelers, we don't increase airport traffic. And by focusing on a safe and environmentally-friendly landing and takeoff infrastructure, as only Lily can help us provide, we will be creating a more sustainable way to travel."
read more

Zero-Emission Landing Spots Announced by Transcend Air and Lily Helipads

Building on its plan to launch a new class of city to city air mobility, with reduced environmental impact, Transcend Air Corporation and Lily Helipads announce a partnership to build sustainable, zero-emission barge-based landing spots, called “vertipads.” A network of low-impact vertipads will be located on the water adjacent to city centers, including in Boston Harbor, around the island of Manhattan, on Montreal’s riverfront, and in San Francisco Bay.
read more

[VIDEO] Air taxis? Boston company working to make unique air travel a reality

Boston to New York in less than 40 minutes sounds like a dream, but one local startup is working to make its unique air travel concept a reality. The company, Transcend Air, plans to put air cabs up in Boston, and is determining how much it will cost to take one once they are ready. Transcend Air wants to float a barge off the Fish Pier in Boston's Seaport District, with a helipad on top.
read more


Wing to launch early access air delivery program in Finland in June

In the coming weeks, Wing will begin delivering goods to residents of Helsinki, Finland. It’s a pilot we’re conducting in the city’s Vuosaari district, delivering fresh Finnish pastries, meatballs for two, and a range of other meals and snacks within minutes, via Wing aircraft. continue reading https://medium.com/wing-aviation/wing-to-launch-early-access-air-delivery-program-in-finland-in-june-13f8c1537ff2


NASA backs development of cryogenic hydrogen system to power all-electric aircraft

(click on picture to enlarge)


Illinois Grainger college's press release

Researchers at the University of Illinois are leading a newly funded project from NASA to develop a novel approach for all-electric aircraft.

Although improvements in vehicle configurations and engine systems have increased flight efficiency over the past few decades, the continued dependency on hydrocarbon fuels makes aircraft operation costs volatile. It also means that commercial aviation will continue to contribute a significant amount of greenhouse gas emissions across the national and international transportation industry. And the forecast for air travel in the United States is expected to increase 90 percent within the next 20 years, leading to even greater emissions.

In an effort to address these issues, this research proposes a fundamental shift away from jet fuel towards more sustainable energy sources for aviation, and the introduction of new electrically-driven propulsion systems for commercial aircraft systems.

Phillip Ansel, Assistant Professor of Aerospace EngineeringIt’s called CHEETA—the Center for Cryogenic High-Efficiency Electrical Technologies for Aircraft. NASA will provide $6 million over the course of three years.

“Essentially, the program focuses on the development of a fully electric aircraft platform that uses cryogenic liquid hydrogen as an energy storage method,” said Phillip Ansell, assistant professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at Urbana-Champaign and principal investigator for the project. “The hydrogen chemical energy is converted to electrical energy through a series of fuel cells, which drive the ultra-efficient electric propulsion system. The low temperature requirements of the hydrogen system also provide opportunities to use superconducting, or lossless, energy transmission and high-power motor systems.

“It’s similar to how MRIs work, magnetic resonance imaging,” Ansell added. “However, these necessary electrical drivetrain systems do not yet exist, and the methods for integrating electrically driven propulsion technologies into an aircraft platform have not yet been effectively established. This program seeks to address this gap and make foundational contributions in technologies that will enable fully electric aircraft of the future.”

The co-principal investigator on the project is Associate Professor Kiruba Haran in U of I’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Concept sketch of a fully electric aircraft platform that uses cryogenic liquid hydrogen as an energy storage method.“Advances in recent years on non-cryogenic machines and drives have brought electric propulsion of commercial regional jets closer to reality, but practical cryogenic systems remain the ‘holy grail’ for large aircraft because of their unmatched power density and efficiency,” Haran said. “The partnerships that have been established for this project position us well to address the significant technical hurdles that exist along this path.”

The project includes participation from eight additional institutions: the Air Force Research Laboratory, Boeing Research and Technology, General Electric Global Research, The Ohio State University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the University of Arkansas, the University of Dayton Research Institute, and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

The other co-investigators on the team are: Assistant Professor Kai James and Associate Professor Jason Merret, both from the Department of Aerospace Engineering at U of I; Arijit Banerjee, assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Illinois; Timothy Haugan from the Air Force Research Lab; Tina Stoia and Edward Mugica from Boeing Research and Technology; Edward Greitzer and David Hall from Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Fang Luo and Alan Mantooth from the University of Arkansas; Michael Sumption from The Ohio State University; Ernst W. Stautner from General Electric Global Research; Bang-Hung Tsao from the University of Dayton Research Institute; and Luigi Vanfretti from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.


Boeing recognizes defects in 737 MAX software simulators



Ryanair postpones first Boeing 737 MAX deliveries to winter 2019



Germany becomes first government customer for ACJ350

press release

The German government has placed a firm order for three ACJ350-900 XWBs, becoming the first government customer for the type, which has already been ordered by private customers.

The aircraft are destined for a mix of government, troop transport and medical evacuation roles. Delivery of the first aircraft is planned for 2020, and the other two in 2022.

Cabin outfitting will be facilitated by ACJ’s Easyfit cabin-outfitting concept, which features pre-installed attachments and standardized interfaces that greatly simplify installing walls and furniture in a carbonfibre fuselage.

“The ACJ350 XWB is the ultimate in modern, long-haul, private jet travel, with the capability to deliver large groups nonstop to the world in unmatched comfort, efficiency and reliability,” says ACJ President Benoit Defforge.

The A350 XWB is the first Airbus aircraft to feature a carbonfibre fuselage and wings, which are immune to fatigue and corrosion, as well as saving weight.

Its technological features also include the greater comfort of a lower cabin-altitude, simpler and faster transition-training for pilots through the newest version of Airbus’s common cockpit, and aerodynamically efficient wings that adapt their shape in flight.

Total A350 XWB orders stand at around 900, more than 250 of which are already in airline service.

The ACJ350-900 XWB can fly 25 passengers 11,100 nm/20,550 km or more than 22 hours in its ultra-long range version.

Around 200 Airbus corporate jets are in service worldwide, flying on every continent, including Antarctica.


Kirkland consultant questioned for six hours in criminal probe of Boeing 737 MAX crashes | The Seattle Times


IRIAF F-14A Tomcat crashes, both crew members ejected safely

lunes, 20 de mayo de 2019


Applications open to host world’s first-ever electric air race


Press release

20 May, 2019 – Cities around the globe have the chance to become a part of aviation history with today’s announcement from Air Race E that it has opened applications to host to the world’s first ever electric airplane race next year.

Air Race E plans to run a series of international electric air racing events, starting with the inaugural race in 2020, in an effort to facilitate the development and promotion of cleaner, faster and more technologically-advanced electric engines.

The series will be run by Air Race Events and led by world-leading air racing promoter Jeff Zaltman, the man behind the globally successful Air Race 1 series – the fuel-powered equivalent.

Organisers are now calling for cities to submit their applications via a formal bidding process through which a shortlist of cities will be determined by October. A final decision on the selection of the first race venue is expected by December this year.

“It’s an extraordinary opportunity for a city to be at the leading edge of the electric revolution in aviation and demonstrate its public commitment to cutting carbon emissions from air travel,” Zaltman said.

Eight European countries have already signed a proposal calling for 25 percent of the EU’s budget to be spent fighting climate change, stating the EU should aim for net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 – and air travel is expected to be the biggest contributor to greenhouse gases by that time. Air Race E offers the opportunity to dramatically accelerate the move towards carbon-free air travel by nurturing the development of an electric alternative to fuel-powered engines, according to the organisers.

“Air Race E is the ideal catalyst for engineering teams to test cutting-edge electric propulsion technology, under the rigours of a proven racing format, while also providing high quality entertainment for international visitors and global TV audiences. We look forward to reviewing the host city bids and working with the successful destination to create a truly historic event,” said Zaltman.

Previous Air Race 1 events run by the company have attracted visitors and media from around the world, reaching an audience of over 1.3 billion people in 127 countries and a reach of more than 4.2 million on social media alone. Zaltman said the potential for Air Race E will be even higher, with support from industry leaders like Airbus, recently announced as the Official Founding Partner of Air Race E, providing industry insight and research to participating teams as they build their electric race aircraft.

“Industry partners of all types are piling in to the sport. The attention focused on this pioneering effort will thrust Air Race E to the forefront of the World’s mission to produce cleaner transportation solutions,” said Zaltman.

Air Race E notes that a suitable airport would be a critical factor in the viability of a city’s bid.

For more information on becoming a host city or to apply go to:


About Air Race E

Air Race E will become the world’s first all-electric airplane race when it launches its inaugural series of international races in 2020. Run by Air Race Events and led by world-leading air racing promoter Jeff Zaltman, the man behind the globally successful Air Race 1 World Cup, the race is set to revolutionise air racing and pioneer innovations in electric aviation. Air Race E will see electric airplanes race directly against each other on a tight 5km circuit just 10m above the ground and at speeds faster than any land-based motorsport. The demand for speed, performance and power management under the rigors of a competitive race environment provide the perfect platform for the development and promotion of cleaner, faster and more technologically-advanced electric engines. The Light Aircraft Association (LAA), has committed its support in developing the technical regulations and providing design oversight for the sport, soon to be sanctioned by the Formula Air Racing Association (FARA) and its counter-part in France, the Association des Pilotes D'Avions de Formules (APAF).


ICAO's 75th Anniversary: Future Aircraft Designs and Competitions - Uniting Aviation

domingo, 19 de mayo de 2019


Airbus announces senior leadership changes

viernes, 17 de mayo de 2019

press release

  • Antoine Bouvier to become Head of Strategy, Mergers & Acquisitions and Public Affairs
  • Eric Béranger to succeed Antoine Bouvier as Chief Executive Officer of MBDA
  • Patrick de Castelbajac appointed Head of Region Asia-Pacific for Airbus

Amsterdam – Airbus SE (stock exchange symbol: AIR) has appointed Antoine Bouvier, 59, Head of Strategy, Mergers & Acquisitions and Public Affairs, effective 1 June 2019. In this position, he will report to Guillaume Faury, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Airbus.

At MBDA, Antoine Bouvier will be succeeded as CEO by Eric Béranger, 56, who has held a number of leadership positions in Airbus Defence and Space. His appointment will also become effective 1 June 2019. MBDA, a joint venture between Airbus (37.5%), BAE Systems PLC (37.5%) and Leonardo S.p.A. (25%), is Europe’s leading missile systems house.

Furthermore, Patrick de Castelbajac, 47, is appointed Head of Region Asia-Pacific for Airbus, effective 1 June 2019. In this capacity, he succeeds Jean-Marc Nasr who was recently appointed Executive Vice President Space Systems within Airbus Defence and Space. Patrick de Castelbajac is also named Head of Sales Asia-Pacific for the Company’s commercial aircraft business as of 1 July 2019. Patrick de Castelbajac will report to Christian Scherer, Chief Commercial Officer and Member of the Executive Committee at Airbus.

“Today’s senior leadership announcements are further important elements to shape the Company’s next chapter,” said Guillaume Faury, CEO of Airbus. “Antoine Bouvier has demonstrated his leadership at the helm of MBDA since 2007, firmly establishing it as Europe’s premier missile company. Antoine brings a rich experience in the Aerospace and Defence sector as well as a strategic vision in an international environment.”

“With Eric Béranger we have a renowned industry leader joining the MBDA Board of Directors to succeed Antoine. Eric is taking over as CEO of MBDA and I wish him all the success for this new professional challenge”, said Faury.

He added: “Patrick de Castelbajac will now be responsible for one of Airbus’ most strategic growth regions with Asia-Pacific. Patrick has demonstrated, at Airbus and at ATR, his strong business knowledge and proximity to our stakeholders – all assets which are needed to successfully advance our business in this dynamic part of the world.”


Embraer earnings results 1st quarter 2019

press release

HIGHLIGHTS Embraer delivered 11 commercial jets and 11 executive jets (8 light / 3 large) in 1Q19; The Company’s firm order backlog at the end of 1Q19 was US$ 16 billion considering all deliveries as well as firm orders obtained during the period; EBIT and EBITDA in 1Q19 were US$ (15.2) million and US$ 30.9 million, respectively, yielding EBIT margin of -1.8% and EBITDA margin of 3.8%. This compares to EBIT of US$ (5.3) million (-0.6% EBIT margin) and EBITDA of US$ 57.8 million (6.0% EBITDA margin) in 1Q18; 1Q19 Net loss attributable to Embraer shareholders and Loss per ADS were US$ (42.5) million and US$ (0.23), respectively. Adjusted net loss (excluding deferred income tax and social contribution) for 1Q19 was US$ (61.8) million, with Adjusted loss per ADS of US$ (0.34). Embraer reported adjusted net loss in 1Q18 of US$ (60.5) million, for an adjusted loss per ADS of US$ (0.33) in the quarter; Embraer reported Free cash flow of US$ (665.3) million in 1Q19, compared to free cash flow of US$ (435.2) million reported in 1Q18. The Company finished the quarter with total cash of US$ 2,483.4 million and total debt of US$ 3,587.1 million, yielding a net debt position of US$ 1,103.7 million versus net debt of US$ 439.9 million at the end of 2018; The Company’s shareholders approved the proposed strategic partnership between Boeing and Embraer during an Extraordinary General Shareholders’ Meeting on February 26, 2019. At the meeting, 96.8% of all valid votes were in favor of the transaction, with participation of roughly 67% of all outstanding shares; The closing of the transaction between Boeing and Embraer remains subject to obtaining regulatory approvals and the satisfaction of other customary closing conditions, expected by the end of 2019; The Company reaffirms all aspects of its 2019 financial and deliveries guidance. Learn more in the full report below: Download


Bombardier’s Global 7500 Jet Demonstrates Unmatched Performance:Non-stop Mission from London City Airport to Los Angeles

press release

  • Bombardier’s Global 7500 Jet Demonstrates Unmatched Performance with Industry’s First Ever Non-stop Mission from London City Airport to Los Angeles Mission highlights Global 7500 jet’s outstanding short-field performance and steep approach capabilities, giving passengers direct access to one of the world’s greatest financial centres
  • Aircraft showcased its impressive field performance and low-speed versatility during takeoff from London City Airport
  • The multiple award-winning Global 7500 aircraft offers Bombardier’s signature smooth ride and a spaciousness that is unique among business jets

Bombardier today announced that its Global 7500 aircraft, the world’s largest and longest range business jet, has demonstrated its unmatched performance capabilities with the first ever flight from London City Airport to Los Angeles, CA.

The aircraft flew non-stop from London City Airport (LCY), one of the most notable airports requiring steep approach capabilities, to Van Nuys, CA, one of the most popular business aviation airports serving the Los Angeles area. The flight was carried out by a flight test vehicle (FTV5) called “The Masterpiece,” in London City to complete the Global 7500 aircraft’s steep approach certification flight test campaign for Transport Canada.

The Masterpiece was configured with the equivalent weight of a fully fitted interior, including a stateroom and shower, and 2,400 lbs of additional payload, representing about 11 passengers and their baggage.

As part of its steep approach certification flight test campaign, the aircraft also performed several takeoffs and landings at London City Airport to demonstrate this operational capability. With its tremendous performance and flexibility, the Global 7500 aircraft gives passengers direct access to any location in the U.S. from the airfield deep in the heart of one of the world’s greatest financial centres.

“The Global 7500 aircraft’s combination of unrivalled performance, exquisite cabin experience and size simply cannot be matched,” said Peter Likoray, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales and Marketing, Bombardier Business Aircraft. “This demonstration continues to cement the Global 7500 jet as the industry leader, showcasing once again to customers the real-world capabilities of this revolutionary aircraft that can deliver uncompromising value to customers under any conditions, at any time, without the need for tailwinds.”

“Welcoming the Bombardier Global 7500 aircraft to London City Airport for its flight test campaign is a crucial milestone towards certification and subsequent business jet operations at London’s most central airport,” said Gary Hodgetts, Director of Operations at London City Airport. “The flight completed by the Global 7500 FTV on May 11th is the longest flight ever out of London City and simply demonstrates the exceptional performance of the aircraft.”

The Global 7500 aircraft is the largest business jet with short-field performance and steep approach capabilities able to operate out of London City Airport and to connect any city in the continental U.S., Africa or the Middle East*. Its long-range performance can go even further traveling eastward, reaching most major cities in Asia.

This latest mission comes only weeks after the aircraft set back-to-back city-pair speed records for the fastest ever business jet flights between New York and London, and between Los Angeles and New York. Prior to that, the Global 7500 aircraft also completed an unprecedented long-range mission from Singapore to Tucson, Arizona, departing as planned during its busy world-tour schedule—without the need to linger at the airfield for days on end, waiting for exponentially stronger tailwinds, as some smaller aircraft do.

Winner of the 2019 Aviation Week Grand Laureate Award and a Red Dot award for design, the Global 7500 jet offers Bombardier’s signature smooth ride and a spaciousness that is unique among business jets. Featuring a full-size kitchen and four true living spaces, the Global 7500 aircraft sets the benchmark for the most exceptional cabin interior. The aircraft offers the most innovative features such as the recently unveiled Soleil lighting system, the industry’s most advanced cabin lighting technology. Designed and developed exclusively for the Global 7500 aircraft, the innovative Soleil lighting system is aviation’s first circadian rhythm-based cabin lighting technology fully integrated with the Flight Management System, and it introduces the revolutionary Dynamic Daylight Simulation feature, which can help combat jet lag. The Global 7500 business jet also offers the patented Nuage seat, meticulously designed for maximum comfort, which introduces an all-new, ergonomically-perfected deep recline position – unavailable on any other business aircraft.

About Bombardier

With over 68,000 employees, Bombardier is a global leader in the transportation industry, creating innovative and game-changing planes and trains. Our products and services provide world-class transportation experiences that set new standards in passenger comfort, energy efficiency, reliability and safety.

Headquartered in Montreal, Canada, Bombardier has production and engineering sites in 28 countries as well as a broad portfolio of products and services for the business aviation, commercial aviation and rail transportation markets. Bombardier shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (BBD). In the fiscal year ended December 31, 2018, Bombardier posted revenues of $16.2 billion US. The company is recognized on the 2019 Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World Index. News and information are available at bombardier.com or follow us on Twitter @Bombardier.


Boeing Statement on 737 MAX Certification and Return to Service

press release

CICAGO, May 16, 2019 – Boeing has completed development of the updated software for the 737 MAX, along with associated simulator testing and the company’s engineering test flight. To date, Boeing has flown the 737 MAX with updated MCAS software for more than 360 hours on 207 flights.

Boeing is now providing additional information to address Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requests that include detail on how pilots interact with the airplane controls and displays in different flight scenarios. Once the requests are addressed, Boeing will work with the FAA to schedule its certification test flight and submit final certification documentation.

“With safety as our clear priority, we have completed all of the engineering test flights for the software update and are preparing for the final certification flight,” said Boeing Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Dennis Muilenburg. “We’re committed to providing the FAA and global regulators all the information they need, and to getting it right. We’re making clear and steady progress and are confident that the 737 MAX with updated MCAS software will be one of the safest airplanes ever to fly. The accidents have only intensified our commitment to our values, including safety, quality and integrity, because we know lives depend on what we do.”

In addition, Boeing has developed enhanced training and education materials that are now being reviewed with the FAA, global regulators, and airline customers to support return-to-service and longer-term operations. This includes a series of regional customer conferences being conducted around the world.


2019 General Aviation Design Challenge winning teams revealed

jueves, 16 de mayo de 2019


Perpignan : la collection du musée du Mas Palegry aux enchères

miércoles, 15 de mayo de 2019


Indra to supply a state-of-the-art deployable military radar to the United Kingdom | indra

martes, 14 de mayo de 2019


Hummingbird robot using AI to go soon where drones can’t

press release


WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — What can fly like a bird and hover like an insect?

Your friendly neighborhood hummingbirds. If drones had this combo, they would be able to maneuver better through collapsed buildings and other cluttered spaces to find trapped victims.

Purdue University researchers have engineered flying robots that behave like hummingbirds, trained by machine learning algorithms based on various techniques the bird uses naturally every day.

This means that after learning from a simulation, the robot “knows” how to move around on its own like a hummingbird would, such as discerning when to perform an escape maneuver.

Artificial intelligence, combined with flexible flapping wings, also allows the robot to teach itself new tricks. Even though the robot can’t see yet, for example, it senses by touching surfaces. Each touch alters an electrical current, which the researchers realized they could track.

“The robot can essentially create a map without seeing its surroundings. This could be helpful in a situation when the robot might be searching for victims in a dark place – and it means one less sensor to add when we do give the robot the ability to see,” said Xinyan Deng, an associate professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue.

The researchers will present their work on May 20 at the 2019 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Montreal.

A YouTube video is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jhl892dHqfA&feature=youtu.be.

Drones can’t be made infinitely smaller, due to the way conventional aerodynamics work. They wouldn’t be able to generate enough lift to support their weight.

But hummingbirds don’t use conventional aerodynamics – and their wings are resilient. “The physics is simply different; the aerodynamics is inherently unsteady, with high angles of attack and high lift. This makes it possible for smaller, flying animals to exist, and also possible for us to scale down flapping wing robots,” Deng said.

Researchers have been trying for years to decode hummingbird flight so that robots can fly where larger aircraft can’t. In 2011, the company AeroVironment, commissioned by DARPA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Defense, built a robotic hummingbird that was heavier than a real one but not as fast, with helicopter-like flight controls and limited maneuverability. It required a human to be behind a remote control at all times.

Deng’s group and her collaborators studied hummingbirds themselves for multiple summers in Montana. They documented key hummingbird maneuvers, such as making a rapid 180-degree turn, and translated them to computer algorithms that the robot could learn from when hooked up to a simulation.

Further study on the physics of insects and hummingbirds allowed Purdue researchers to build robots smaller than hummingbirds – and even as small as insects – without compromising the way they fly. The smaller the size, the greater the wing flapping frequency, and the more efficiently they fly, Deng says.

The robots have 3D-printed bodies, wings made of carbon fiber and laser-cut membranes. The researchers have built one hummingbird robot weighing 12 grams – the weight of the average adult magnificent hummingbird – and another insect-sized robot weighing 1 gram. The hummingbird robot can lift more than its own weight, up to 27 grams.

Designing their robots with higher lift gives the researchers more wiggle room to eventually add a battery and sensing technology, such as a camera or GPS. Currently, the robot needs to be tethered to an energy source while it flies – but that won’t be for much longer, the researchers say.

The robots could fly silently just as a real hummingbird does, making them more ideal for covert operations. And they stay steady through turbulence, which the researchers demonstrated by testing the dynamically scaled wings in an oil tank.

The robot requires only two motors and can control each wing independently of the other, which is how flying animals perform highly agile maneuvers in nature.

“An actual hummingbird has multiple groups of muscles to do power and steering strokes, but a robot should be as light as possible, so that you have maximum performance on minimal weight,” Deng said.

Robotic hummingbirds wouldn’t only help with search-and-rescue missions, but also would allow biologists to study hummingbirds more reliably in their natural environment through the senses of a realistic robot.

“We learned from biology to build the robot, and now biological discoveries can happen with extra help from robots,” Deng said.

Simulations of the technology are available open-source at https://github.com/purdue-biorobotics/flappy.

Early stages of the work, including the Montana hummingbird experiments in collaboration with Bret Tobalske’s group at the University of Montana, were financially supported by the National Science Foundation.

This work aligns with Purdue's Giant Leaps celebration, acknowledging the university’s global advancements made in AI, algorithms and automation as part of Purdue’s 150th anniversary. This is one of the four themes of the yearlong celebration’s Ideas Festival, designed to showcase Purdue as an intellectual center solving real-world issues.

Writer: Kayla Wiles, 765-494-2432, wiles5@purdue.edu

Source: Xinyan Deng, 765-494-1513, xdeng@purdue.edu

Note to Journalists: Links to the paper preprints are available in the abstracts. A YouTube video is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jhl892dHqfA&feature=youtu.be and other multimedia can be found in a Google Drive folder at https://drive.google.com/open?id=1XrFz3MOj_2jotVjVQOmC5upfD8kWIOnF. Video and photos were prepared by Jared Pike, communications specialist for Purdue University’s School of Mechanical Engineering.

Learning Extreme Hummingbird Maneuvers on Flapping Wing Robots
Fan Fei, Zhan Tu, Jian Zhang, and Xinyan Deng
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, USA
Biological studies show that hummingbirds can perform extreme aerobatic maneuvers during fast escape. Given a sudden looming visual stimulus at hover, a hummingbird initiates a fast backward translation coupled with a 180-degree yaw turn, which is followed  by  instant  posture  stabilization in just under 10 wingbeats. Consider the wingbeat frequency of 40Hz, this aggressive maneuver is carried out in just 0.2 seconds. Inspired by the hummingbirds’ near-maximal performance during such extreme maneuvers, we developed a flight control strategy and experimentally demonstrated that such maneuverability can be achieved  by  an  at-scale  12-  gram hummingbird robot equipped with just two actuators. The proposed hybrid control policy combines model-based nonlinear control with model-free reinforcement learning. We use model-based nonlinear control for nominal flight control, as the dynamic model is relatively accurate for these conditions. However, during extreme maneuver, the modeling error becomes unmanageable. A model-free reinforcement learning policy trained in simulation was optimized to ’destabilize’ the system and maximize the performance during maneuvering. The hybrid policy manifests a maneuver that is close to that observed in hummingbirds. Direct simulation-to-real transfer  is achieved, demonstrating the hummingbird-like fast evasive maneuvers on the at-scale hummingbird robot.

Acting is Seeing: Navigating Tight Space Using Flapping Wings
Zhan Tu, Fan Fei, Jian Zhang, and Xinyan Deng
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, USA
Wings of flying animals can not only generate lift and control torques but also can sense their surroundings. Such dual functions of sensing and actuation coupled in one element are particularly useful for small sized bio-inspired robotic flyers, whose weight, size, and power are under stringent constraint. In this work, we present the first flapping-wing robot using its flapping wings for environmental perception and navigation in tight space, without the need for any visual feedback. As the test platform, we introduce the Purdue Hummingbird, a flapping-wing robot with 17cm wingspan and 12 grams weight, with a pair of 30-40Hz flapping wings driven by only two actuators. By interpreting the wing loading feedback and its variations, the vehicle can detect the presence of environmental changes such as grounds, walls, stairs, obstacles and wind gust. The instantaneous wing loading can be obtained through the measurements and interpretation of the current feedback by the motors that actuate the wings. The effectiveness of the proposed approach  is experimentally demonstrated on several challenging flight tasks without vision: terrain following, wall following and going through a narrow corridor. To ensure flight stability, a robust controller was designed for handling unforeseen disturbances during the flight. Sensing and navigating one’s environment through actuator loading is a promising method for mobile robots, and it can serve as an alternative or complementary method to visual perception.

Flappy Hummingbird: An Open Source Dynamic Simulation of Flapping Wing Robots and Animals
Fan Fei, Zhan Tu, Yilun Yang, Jian Zhang, and Xinyan Deng
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, USA
Insects and hummingbirds exhibit extraordinary flight capabilities and can simultaneously master seemingly conflicting goals: stable hovering and aggressive maneuvering, unmatched by small scale man-made vehicles. Flapping Wing Micro Air Vehicles (FWMAVs) hold great promise for closing this performance gap. However, design and control of such systems remain challenging due to various constraints. Here, we present an open source high fidelity dynamic simulation for FWMAVs to serve as a testbed for the  design,  optimization and flight control  of  FWMAVs.  For  simulation  validation, we recreated the hummingbird-scale robot developed in our lab in the  simulation.  System  identification  was  performed  to obtain the model parameters. The force generation, open- loop and closed-loop dynamic response between simulated and experimental flights were compared and validated. The unsteady aerodynamics and the highly nonlinear flight dynamics present challenging control problems for conventional and learning control algorithms such as Reinforcement Learning. The interface of the simulation is fully compatible with OpenAI Gym environment. As a benchmark study, we present a linear controller for hovering stabilization and a Deep Reinforcement Learning control policy for goal-directed maneuvering. Finally, we demonstrate direct simulation-to-real transfer of both control policies onto the physical robot, further demonstrating the fidelity of the simulation.


DARPA to launch competition for AI-powered aircraft dogfighting


DARPA's press release


Artificial intelligence has defeated chess grandmasters, Go champions, professional poker players, and, now, world-class human experts in the online strategy games Dota 2 and StarCraft II. No AI currently exists, however, that can outduel a human strapped into a fighter jet in a high-speed, high-G dogfight. As modern warfare evolves to incorporate more human-machine teaming, DARPA seeks to automate air-to-air combat, enabling reaction times at machine speeds and freeing pilots to concentrate on the larger air battle.

Turning aerial dogfighting over to AI is less about dogfighting, which should be rare in the future, and more about giving pilots the confidence that AI and automation can handle a high-end fight. As soon as new human fighter pilots learn to take-off, navigate, and land, they are taught aerial combat maneuvers. Contrary to popular belief, new fighter pilots learn to dogfight because it represents a crucible where pilot performance and trust can be refined. To accelerate the transformation of pilots from aircraft operators to mission battle commanders — who can entrust dynamic air combat tasks to unmanned, semi-autonomous airborne assets from the cockpit — the AI must first prove it can handle the basics.

To pursue this vision, DARPA created the Air Combat Evolution (ACE) program. ACE aims to increase warfighter trust in autonomous combat technology by using human-machine collaborative dogfighting as its initial challenge scenario. DARPA will hold a Proposers Day for interested researchers on May 17, 2019, in Arlington, Virginia.

“Being able to trust autonomy is critical as we move toward a future of warfare involving manned platforms fighting alongside unmanned systems,” said Air Force Lt. Col. Dan Javorsek (Ph.D.), ACE program manager in DARPA’s Strategic Technology Office (STO). “We envision a future in which AI handles the split-second maneuvering during within-visual-range dogfights, keeping pilots safer and more effective as they orchestrate large numbers of unmanned systems into a web of overwhelming combat effects.”

ACE is one of several STO programs designed to enable DARPA’s “mosaic warfare” vision. Mosaic warfare shifts warfighting concepts away from a primary emphasis on highly capable manned systems — with their high costs and lengthy development timelines — to a mix of manned and less-expensive unmanned systems that can be rapidly developed, fielded, and upgraded with the latest technology to address changing threats. Linking together manned aircraft with significantly cheaper unmanned systems creates a “mosaic” where the individual “pieces” can easily be recomposed to create different effects or quickly replaced if destroyed, resulting in a more resilient warfighting capability.

The ACE program will train AI in the rules of aerial dogfighting similar to how new fighter pilots are taught, starting with basic fighter maneuvers in simple, one-on-one scenarios. While highly nonlinear in behavior, dogfights have a clearly defined objective, measureable outcome, and the inherent physical limitations of aircraft dynamics, making them a good test case for advanced tactical automation. Like human pilot combat training, the AI performance expansion will be closely monitored by fighter instructor pilots in the autonomous aircraft, which will help co-evolve tactics with the technology. These subject matter experts will play a key role throughout the program.

“Only after human pilots are confident that the AI algorithms are trustworthy in handling bounded, transparent and predictable behaviors will the aerial engagement scenarios increase in difficulty and realism,” Javorsek said. “Following virtual testing, we plan to demonstrate the dogfighting algorithms on sub-scale aircraft leading ultimately to live, full-scale manned-unmanned team dogfighting with operationally representative aircraft.”

DARPA seeks a broad spectrum of potential proposers for each area of study, including small companies and academics with little previous experience with the Defense Department. To that end, before Phase 1 of the program begins, DARPA will sponsor a stand-alone, limited-scope effort focused on the first technical area: automating individual tactical behavior for one-on-one dogfights. Called the “AlphaDogfight Trials,” this initial solicitation will be issued by AFWERX, an Air Force innovation catalyst with the mission of finding novel solutions to Air Force challenges at startup speed. The AFWERX trials will pit AI dogfighting algorithms against each other in a tournament-style competition.

“Through the AFWERX trials, we intend to tap the top algorithm developers in the air combat simulation and gaming communities,” Javorsek said. “We want them to help lay the foundational AI elements for dogfights, on which we can build as the program progresses.”

AFWERX will announce the trials in the near future on its website: https://www.afwerx.af.mil/.

For ACE Proposers Day registration details, please visit: https://go.usa.gov/xmnMn


USAF to Activate ‘Stealth’ Aggressor Unit


Textron Aviation Plans To Hire 1,000 New Workers This Year


Two floatplanes collide in midair near Ketchikan, Alaska; 5 dead, 1 missing, 10 injured


Hermeus announces plan to build the fastest aircraft in the world | Ars Technica


XTI TriFan Prototype Makes First Flight

viernes, 10 de mayo de 2019


Thales Alenia Space Marks Key Milestone in the ExoMars 2020 ESA mission

press release

The laboratory to analyze samples and discover traces of present and past life on Mars is now ready to be integrated on-board the rover

Turin – 8 May 2019 - After a challenging engineering phase, the Analytical Laboratory Drawer (ALD), the core of the Rover of the ExoMars 2020 ESA Program, has been successfully integrated and tested by Thales Alenia Space, Joint Venture between Thales 67% and Leonardo 33%, in its facility in Torino, Italy. Now it is ready to be integrated inside the Rover named Rosalind Franklin, that is provided by Airbus Defense and Space in UK.

The European Rover will be the first capable of drilling two meters into Mars, where ancient biomarkers may still be preserved from the harsh radiation environment on the surface and collecting samples.

The ALD will cover this ambitious task by analyzing the samples, in particular pyrolysis/chemicals derivate, detecting potential organic groups while characterizing the soil’s sample mineralogy with unprecedented microscopic resolution.

The Laboratory embed a set of sophisticated scientific instruments (the infrared hyperspectral microscope MicrOmega, the Raman Laser Spectrometer RLS, the Mars Organic Molecule Analyser MOMA) directly served by a set of mechanisms able to retrieve and process soil samples cored by the Drill, developed and built by Leonardo, in the Mars subsurface. A set of detailed chemistry, physical, and spectral analyses are then run internally to the ALD.

“We are proud of reaching this milestone, a key technical challenge to prove that the unique ALD design and the methodologies specifically studied and adopted for the ExoMars 2020 meets the expectations”, said Walter Cugno – Vice President, Exploration and Science at Thales Alenia Space – “Using its miniaturized life search laboratory and advanced robotic technology, the ExoMars 2020 mission will explore the red planet in search of new evidence to answer questions that have long fascinated humanity”.

In order to exclusively find traces of life on Mars, without bringing some terrestrial ones from the Earth, the laboratory in which the sample is processed and analyzed (UCZ) has been strictly sterilized, ultra-cleaned and integrated in the dedicated Glove Box facility, reaching an unprecedented level of cleanliness for Space application.

To guarantee its proper duty once arrived on Mars facing the Martian environment, the integral combined functionality of the ALD equipment have been verified in the Planetary Environment Simulation Facility located in the Thales Alenia Space, Torino premises, witnessing excellent results, as also recognized by the scientific community:

Jorge Vago, ExoMars mission scientist, ESA: "The ALD is the heart of the ExoMars rover; it is uniquely suited to search for signs of life and obtain corroborating geological information. We have great hopes for this mission's scientific discoveries and thank Thales Alenia Space for their professional work and dedication."

Prof. Fred Goesmann, MOMA Principal investigator, Max Plank Institute (D): “MOMA is perfectly equipped to search for molecular and chiral biosignatures. The final tests after integration at Thales Alenia Space showed that MOMA is working to expectations and that the system is clean. We thank the Thales Alenia Space team for their care and dedication."

Prof. Jean Pierre Bibring, MicrOmega Principal investigator, CNES (F): “With MicrOmega, coupled in the ALD to RLS and MOMA, ExoMars will perform the unprecedented microscopic characterization of martian samples, aimed at identifying potential witnesses of extra-terrestrial life. Congratulation again to this brilliant achievement of ALD FM integration and test.”

Prof Fernando Rull, RLS Principal investigator, INTA (Sp): “The RLS team would like to underline the technical excellence demonstrated by Thales Alenia Space and their industrial team in implementing a technical solution allowing the instruments in the ALD to investigate the sample material in ultraclean way, an engineering first for planetary missions.”

In Thales Alenia Space the effort continues with the integration and testing of the Rover Ground Test Module, a full Rover simulator equipped with a copy of the ALD module, that will be used to rehearse from Torino all activities commanded to the Rover exploring and running science on Mars. The ExoMars 2016 Mission TGO (Trace Gas Orbiter), also leaded by Thales Alenia Space, will enable the communication with the ExoMars 2020 Rover processing around the Martian orbit all the information to and from Mars.

In parallel, Thales Alenia Space will proceed with the development of the Mission Control Software, and complete the integration and testing of the Descent Module (provided by Lavochkin) including its mating to the Carrier Module (provided by OHB). The two integrated elements will move in July to the Thales Alenia Space Facility in Cannes, where will take place the environmental testing. Before leaving the Thales Alenia Space Facility in Cannes, the Rover, Rosalind Franklin, will meet the Landing Platform Kazachok and the Carrier Module, and jointed together will compose the final Spacecraft flying in July 2020 from Baikonur in Kazakhstan to red planet Mars.

More about the Exomars 2020 mission

ExoMars is an European Space Agency program executed in cooperation with Russian Space Agency Roscosmos with contribution of NASA. The chronology can be summarized as follows: Launch from Baikonur between 26 July and 11 Aug 2020, cruise to Mars through a direct ballistic trajectory, separate the CM from DM, entry into the Martian atmosphere and the subsequent descent and landing of the Descent Module and its Rover, weighing approximately 2 metric tons, on 19 March 2021; the arrival of a landing platform and egress of the rover; exploration by the rover of a vast area of Mars, with geological/scientific sampling of both the planet’s surface and subsoil, by taking and analyzing soil samples to a depth of 2 meters; search for present or past forms of life in the soil samples that will be processed on the spacecraft; geochemical and atmospheric studies of the surface and underground environments.

More about the industrial consortium

On the 2020 mission, Thales Alenia Space in Italy, is in charge of the design, development and verification of the entire system, the development of the Carrier Module navigation and guidance system and perform EDL/GNC development, the Rover System, including the Analytical Laboratory Drawer (ALD) as well as supplying basic parts of the DM, including the Radar Altimeter. In addition, Thales Alenia Space in Italy implements a deep technical partnership with Lavochkin (RUS) with European contributions for the development Descent Module (DM) Kazachok. OHB is in charge to develop the CM as well as some ALD subsystems (SPDS Mechanisms, Structure and Harness). The Rover Vehicle itself is provided by Airbus Defence and Space in UK. Leonardo is developing the ExoMars drill, which will dig into the

Mars subsoil at a depth of two meters plus the Drill and ALD mechanisms control unit and software. ALTEC – Aerospace Logistics Technology Engineering, a Thales Alenia Space in Italy (63.75%) and ASI (36.25%) company – will also be responsible for the design, development and maintenance of the ROCC (Rover Operation Control Center) and for controlling the Rover on the Martian surface.

About Thales Alenia Space

Drawing on over 40 years of experience and a unique combination of skills, expertise and cultures, Thales Alenia Space delivers cost-effective solutions for telecommunications, navigation, Earth observation, environmental management, exploration, science and orbital infrastructures. Governments and private industry alike count on Thales Alenia Space to design satellite-based systems that provide anytime, anywhere connections and positioning, monitor our planet, enhance management of its resources, and explore our Solar System and beyond. Thales Alenia Space sees space as a new horizon, helping to build a better, more sustainable life on Earth. A joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), Thales Alenia Space also teams up with Telespazio to form the parent companies’ Space Alliance, which offers a complete range of services. Thales Alenia Space posted consolidated revenues of about 2.5 billion euros in 2018 and has around 8,000 employees in nine countries.



Take it Beyond the Limit: Lockheed Martin Completes Critical Testing Milestone for NASA JPL's Mars 2020 Rover Heat Shield

press release

DENVER, May 2, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Protecting against the extremes of space travel is critical to the success of any mission. Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) has successfully completed the flight hardware structure of the heat shield, validating the physical integrity with a final static test after exposing it to flight-like thermal conditions. The heat shield is half of the large and sophisticated two-part aeroshell that Lockheed Martin is designing and building to encapsulate NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Mars 2020 rover from the punishing heat and friction of entry through the Martian atmosphere.

The Mars 2020 mission will be one of the most challenging entry, descent and landings ever attempted on the Red Planet. The heat shield aerodynamics serve as a "brake" to slow the spacecraft from about 12,000 mph (19,300 kph) so the structure needs to be flawless. As the tenth aeroshell system that Lockheed Martin has produced for NASA, this is one of the largest at 15 feet (4.5 meters) in diameter.

"Our experience building aeroshells for NASA Mars missions does not mean that it is 'easy'," said Neil Tice, Lockheed Martin Mars 2020 Aeroshell program manager. "Tests like this structural test are absolutely essential to ensuring mission success in the long-run."

The static test was conducted on April 25 and was designed to mimic the load that the heat shield will experience during the most extreme part of its journey; the entry phase. To do that, engineers used vacuum pumps to simulate the pressure of approximately 140,000 pounds on the structure. The structure was tested to 120% of the expected flight load to push it to the limit.

For this particular test, the team also integrated a new form of instrumentation. Historically, this test utilizes conventional strain gauges and extensometers to monitor structural response at distinct points during loading. Partnering with NASA Langley Research Center, the team also applied a new tool called Photogrammetry or Digital Image Correlation. This allowed the team to monitor full-field strains and displacements over the entire visible area of the structure in real time. To use this technique, a vinyl wrap, similar to a decal, that has different visual cues (dark random speckles over a white background) was applied to the heat shield. During the test, a set of digital cameras optically monitor any changes in the pattern and generate a three-dimensional map of displacements and surface strains as the applied load increases.

"While we have used this full-field photogrammetry technique on test articles in the past, this is the first successful implementation on official flight hardware," said Dr. Sotiris Kellas, NASA Langley aerospace engineer and lead for the technical demonstration. "This technology will allow us to safeguard hardware during testing but more importantly provide data for test analysis correlation and improvement of our design and analysis tools."

Following this test, the Lockheed Martin team will apply Phenolic Impregnated Carbon Ablator (PICA) thermal protection system tiles to the structure. Once complete and through all environmental testing, the full heat shield will be mated to the backshell in early fall.

The Mars 2020 Project at NASA JPL manages rover development for the Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington. The NASA Engineering and Safety Center at NASA Langley Research Center provided the photogrammetry support for this test.


Trump's Trade War With China Hasn't Wrecked Tech—Yet

jueves, 9 de mayo de 2019

Now for your latest installment of the on-again, off-again trade war between the US and China, we have President Trump blasting Beijing for reneging on commitments to clamp down on intellectual property theft, end forced technology transfers from US tech companies, and allow US companies greater …


Enviado a través de Flipboard


Confessions Of A Navy F-14 Fleet Pilot Turned F-5 Aggressor - The Drive


Secret U.S. Missile Aims to Kill Only Terrorists, Not Nearby Civilians



With 737 Max, Boeing Wants to Win Back Trust. Many Are Skeptical. - The New York Times


Satellite imagery shows China constructing third aircraft carrier

miércoles, 8 de mayo de 2019


Can Aviation Grow and Achieve Net-Zero Emissions?


Dornier Seawings launches Orca multi-mission amphibian


Russian airline cancels Sukhoi Superjet order after fatal crash-landing


Works to extend Brussels South Charleroi Airport’s sole runway have started


Can Aviation Grow and Achieve Net-Zero Emissions?



The Solar Impulse Foundation and the European Investment Bank join forces to support innovative companies in their financing strategy



V-22 Osprey Marks Three Decades of Transforming Military Aviation



Who will be the most impacted by a delayed entry into service of the Boeing NMA?




Final Qantas 747 Service To Mainland U.S. Scheduled in December



Boeing SC lets mechanics inspect their own work, leading to repeated mistakes, workers say





New Lockheed Concept Shows Navy F-35C Armed With Hypersonic Cruise Missiles



ARGENTINA: Jatos Super Étendard Modernisé estão chegando



China’s iSpace to make private orbital launch attempt in early June



Future US Navy fighter will not be joint effort with USAF

martes, 7 de mayo de 2019


IDEF’19: Su-57 May Provide Turkey with an F-35 Alternative


Viking Launches Avionics Upgrade Program (AUP) for Canadair CL-215T / CL-415 Aerial Firefighter Fleet

press release

Pictured above: Proposed layout of the Collins Aerospace Pro Line Fusion integrated avionics suite featuring 3-screen LCD displays.

Nimes, France, March 18, 2019: Viking Air Limited of Victoria, British Columbia has launched an Avionics Upgrade Program (AUP) for the Canadair CL-215T and CL-415 fleet of aerial firefighting aircraft. The program will incorporate modernized technologies in communications, navigation, surveillance, and air-traffic management functionality in an integrated platform featuring the Collins Aerospace Pro Line Fusion avionics suite.

To face challenges with supportability and end-of-life components inherent with aging technology, the AUP will utilize modern and reliable COTS systems that will easily interface with specialized mission equipment. The system is designed as a complete integrated solution for a harmonized cockpit that will not only meet current regulatory requirements, it will also address future operational and technical requirements over a 25+ year horizon.

The standardized cockpit will feature an ergonomic flight deck with three large LCD displays and low instrument footprint for enhanced Flight Data Visualization that will help reduce pilot workload and provide focused information in a streamlined, simplified cockpit design.

A key component of the AUP is the introduction of the Collins Pro Line Fusion digital avionics suite, a FAR/Part 25 certified scalable software-based system. The avionics suite’s core configuration features Flight Director, Flight Management System (FMS) coupled with SBAS-GPS and LPV capability, Terrain Awareness Warning System (TAWS), ADS-B Out, Synthetic Vision, crew alerting system display indicators, and a multi-functional keyboard panel with dual cursor controls providing an alternative to touch screen commands.

A SATCOM system, Latitude Technologies Ionode System, Weather Radar, and Auto-Pilot are few of the available options to further enhance and customize the avionics system based on operator requirements.

Dan Seroussi, Viking’s Customer Service & Product Support Program Director, stated, “The Canadair Aerial Firefighters are at the heart of Viking’s development strategy. These aircraft have incredible operational capabilities, and their versatility will allow them to accomplish a variety of missions in the future. We’re confident that not only will the Collins Pro Line Fusion Avionics suite help address the obsolescence issues and new regulatory requirements currently facing operators of CL-215T and CL-415 aircraft, it will also extend operators’ fleet longevity for many years to come.”

Gregory Davis, Viking’s vice president Customer Service and Product Support, added, “The Pro Line Fusion’s advanced technology will be the backbone for the evolution and support of these incredible aircraft for the next 25+ years, and I am excited to see this integrated avionics suite equipping current CL fleets as well as the new Viking CL-415EAF Enhanced Aerial Firefighter. This system will also form the basis for any new production aircraft, allowing for seamless interoperability and maintainability between new and legacy aircraft.”

The AUP will initially be offered as an upgrade to operators of CL-215T or CL-415 who can select either a complete modification including the supply and installation of the avionics suite, or as a parts kit for installation by an approved Maintenance Repair Organization.

more: https://www.vikingair.com/customer-support/avionics-upgrade-program-aup


Bombardier Reports First Quarter 2019 Financial Results and New Strategic Direction for Aerospace, the formation of Bombardier Aviation

press release

  • First quarter results in line with preliminary results announced last week.
  • Announces the strategic formation of Bombardier Aviation, consolidating all aerospace assets into a single, streamlined and fully integrated business. As a result, Bombardier will pursue the divestiture of its Belfast and Morocco aerostructures businesses.

All amounts in this press release are in U.S. dollars unless otherwise indicated. Amounts in tables are in millions except per share amounts, unless otherwise indicated.

Bombardier (TSX: BBD.B) announced today its financial results for the first quarter of 2019, in line with the preliminary results published on April 25, 2019. The Company also announced that it will consolidate its aerospace assets into a single, streamlined, and fully integrated Bombardier Aviation business unit, which will be led by David Coleal.

“We are very excited to announce the strategic formation of Bombardier Aviation,” said Alain Bellemare, President and Chief Executive Officer, Bombardier Inc. “It is the right next step in our transformation. The consolidation will simplify and better focus our organization on our leading brands, Global, Challenger, Learjet and the CRJ. It will also allow us to better support our customers and generate value for shareholders.”

“With our clear vision for the future of Bombardier Aviation, we will focus our aerostructures activities around our core capabilities in Montréal, Mexico and our newly acquired Global 7500 wing operations in Texas,” Bellemare continued. “Collectively, these facilities provide Bombardier with all the skills, technologies and capabilities to design, produce and service the current and next generation of aircraft.”

As the Company moves to optimize its global manufacturing footprint, Bombardier will pursue the divestiture of the Belfast and Morocco aerostructures businesses. These are great businesses with tremendous capabilities.

Bombardier Aviation will continue to be the best business aircraft franchise in the world, and well positioned to maximize the value of its proven CRJ regional jets. Together, Bombardier Aviation and Bombardier Transportation will be two strong pillars supporting Bombardier’s future.

Financial Results

First quarter 2019 adjusted EBITDA(1) and adjusted EBIT(1) were $266 million and $171 million, respectively, on revenues of $3.5 billion. On a reported basis, EBIT was $684 million, driven higher by the $516 million gain on disposal of the training business closed during the quarter. Free cash flow usage(1) in the first quarter was $1.0 billion, supporting the intense ramp-up of key rail projects and Global 7500 aircraft deliveries in the second half of the year. Cash flow usage from operating activities amounted to $907 million in the first quarter.

As announced last week, Bombardier’s consolidated revenue guidance for 2019 has been adjusted to reflect revised expectations at Transportation and Commercial Aircraft. Full year revenues are expected to be approximately $17.0 billion, approximately $1.0 billion lower than originally anticipated. Year over year, the revised guidance represents approximately 10% organic growth over 2018, excluding currency effects and divestitures.

While earnings expectations across the aerospace businesses are unchanged, Transportation’s adjusted EBIT guidance is reduced by approximately $150 million for the year. As a result, the Company expects to report full year consolidated adjusted EBITDA of $1.50-1.65 billion, implying growth of almost 20% year over year. Consolidated adjusted EBIT guidance is also revised, and is now expected at $1.0-1.15 billion.

Commenting on Transportation’s ramp-up challenges, Bellemare stated, “despite the current industrial challenges we are facing, the business fundamentals at Bombardier Transportation remain very strong. We have a refreshed product portfolio, a broad global customer base and a strong $34-billion backlog. The team is making steady progress addressing our challenging legacy projects, however, it will take us a few more quarters to manage these projects to completion.”

Free cash flow guidance for the full year remains unchanged, at breakeven plus or minus $250 million, as Global 7500 aircraft and key Transportation project deliveries are expected to accelerate in the second half of the year.

Termination of the Corporation’s Automatic Securities Disposition Plan

Bombardier also announced today that its Board of Directors, upon the recommendation of its Human Resources and Compensation Committee, decided to terminate its automatic securities disposition plan (ASDP) established on August 15, 2018 in accordance with its terms.

  Selected results (PDF)
Business Aircraft (PDF)
  • Revenues totaled $970 million on 24 aircraft, as deliveries ramp-up through the year to reach full year guidance.
  • Aftermarket service revenues continued to grow double-digit, at 20% year over year, supported by the strategy to expand footprint and move closer to customers. During the quarter, Business Aircraft announced the expansion of its Singapore Service Centre to further bolster customer service capabilities in the Asia-Pacific region by 2020.
  • Adjusted EBIT margin of 7.6% reflects the Global 7500 ramp-up and higher aftermarket revenues. The intensification of Global 7500 activities is expected to weigh on earnings before adjusted EBIT margin recovers towards full year guidance of approximately 7.5%.
  • Reported EBIT for the quarter of $594 million is largely driven by the $516 million gain on the sale of the Business Aircraft training activities to CAE.
  • Backlog increased by $0.6 billion, to an industry leading $14.9 billion, reflecting broad market interest across all regions and customer types.
  • The Global 7500 has been on a record-setting streak and continues to surpass expectations in terms of cabin experience and performance. Interest in this unique business aircraft has only intensified since entering into service at the end of 2018 as demonstrated with the recent order confirmation of four additional Global 7500 business jets by HK Bellawings.
Commercial Aircraft (PDF)
  • Revenues reached $241 million in the quarter, reducing year-over-year as a result of the deconsolidation of CSALP starting in the third quarter of 2018 as well as lower deliveries.
  • EBIT of $22 million reflects the deconsolidation of CSALP, higher proportion of aftermarket revenues and a proactive management of residual value guarantees exposure.
  • During the quarter, a subsidiary of Chorus Aviation Inc. has finalized a firm purchase agreement for nine CRJ900 aircraft to be operated by Jazz Aviation LP, making them the first Canadian operator of the new ATMOSPHERE cabin.
  • Commercial Aircraft launched the CRJ550 aircraft. Leveraging current aircraft platform, it is designed to replace the existing fleet of aging 50-seaters, while maximizing revenue potential with a triple-class cabin offering. United Airlines is the launch operator of this new model.
  • Commercial Aircraft’s expected deliveries for the year are lowered to approximately 30 aircraft as a result of the closing of the Q400 divestiture, which is now expected mid-year. Revenue guidance for the year is correspondingly adjusted to approximately $1.15 billion, with no change to adjusted EBIT(7) guidance at a loss of approximately $125 million.
Aerostructures and Engineering Services (PDF)
  • Revenues at Aerostructures and Engineering Services grew year-over-year to $470 million as it continued to ramp up the Global 7500 and the A220 programs.
  • External revenues increased year-over-year to 43% of total revenues as A220 components are now third party sales.
  • The EBIT margin for the three-month period increased mainly as a result of a positive impact from revenue mix skewed towards more mature programs. As Global 7500 and A220 deliveries ramp-up, full year adjusted EBIT margin guidance remains at approximately 7.5% for the year.
  • Since closing the acquisition of the Global 7500 aircraft wing program on February 6, 2019, Aerostructures and Engineering Services has focused on integrating the Red Oak, Texas facility to support the ramp-up of the Global 7500.
Transportation (PDF)
  • Transportation’s revenues for the first quarter reached $2.1 billion, 5% lower year-over-year excluding currency impacts, reflecting a slower production ramp-up on certain large projects as the Corporation better synchronizes its production output to customer requirements and delivery schedules.
  • EBIT margin of 3.9% is impacted by lower revenues and the related fixed cost absorption, as well as revised cost estimates on certain challenging projects. While cost absorption headwinds are expected to be resolved as production and revenues return to planned levels later this year, the ongoing and gradual phase out of legacy projects over the course of 2019 and 2020 is expected to support improving margins.
  • Full-year revenues and adjusted EBIT guidance are adjusted to reflect the revised project delivery schedules.
    • Revenue guidance is adjusted to approximately $8.75 billion, resulting in approximately 3.5% year-over-year growth, excluding currency impacts. This reduction is driven by approximately $500 million from slower production ramp-up, which defers revenues, and approximately $250 million of unfavourable currency impact at current rates.
    • Adjusted EBIT margin is revised from approximately 9% to approximately 8%.
  • Transportation’s backlog of $33.8 billion reflects book-to-bill of 0.8 and is expected to improve throughout the year based on a strong pipeline of opportunities.


Otra iniciativa de...

Otra iniciativa de...