Schrödinger’s Plane: Boeing NMA or re-engined Boeing 767?

Daily Newsletter | October 14, 2019
Rumors have emerged that Boeing is looking into putting a new engine on the 767. The study, called the 767-X, mostly focuses on freighter aircraft, Yet touches upon the possibility of the 767 replacing the NMA.
A few hours after the certification of the 737 MAX was criticized by a panel of aviation authorities, Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg was stripped from his role as a chairman by the Board of Directors, which elected David Calhoun to replace him.
After American Airlines’ proposed venture with Chile’s LATAM Airlines Group was stopped in its tracks, in a true soap opera style, the U.S. carrier may once again be courting Brazilian low-cost carrier GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes to counter rival Delta Air Lines’ deal and continue on its South America strategy.
In a new development of a decade long dispute, the World Trade Organization (WTO) officially authorized the United States to impose tariffs on $7.5 billion of imports from the European Union because of subsidies granted to Airbus. The European Commission urges Washington to start negotiations and reach a settlement instead.
Air Austral became the first A220 customer in the Indian Ocean region, Airbus announced on October 14, 2019. The airline, based in France’s Réunion Island, signed a firm order for three A220-300. The deliveries are to start at the end of 2020. 
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The last hurrah of the Boeing 747: the Intercontinental Queen

Weekend Special | October 12, 2019
On October 12, 2011, Cargolux operated the first commercial flight of the newest version of the Queen of the Skies, the 747-8. While the flight only carried freight from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) to Luxembourg, both Boeing and Cargolux could not be any less excited. The then-president and Chief Executive Officer of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Jim Albaugh said that the 747-8 Freighter was “truly the Queen of the Skies for the 21st Century”. Frank Reimen, who was then the CEO of Cargolux, added that the company was looking “forward to the efficiency and environmental benefits that come with this great airplane”. A year later, on June 1, 2012, Lufthansa introduced the Boeing 747-8I, a passenger version of the quad-jet, dubbed the Intercontinental.

Yet the Queen’s newest iteration never really took off.

THIS WEEK IN THE NEWS
Presented at the Paris Air Show 2019, the ATR 42-600S has been officially launched by the Franco-Italian regional aircraft manufacturer. ATR says it has already received 20 commitments for the new variant.
DEFENSE
A LOOK AT
MRO
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Pilots Sue Boeing Over 737 MAX

No paper plane: NASA supersonic X-59 QueSST is coming together

Daily Newsletter | October 11, 2019
Following years of research and design engineering, NASA believes it has come up with a solution on how to reduce a sonic boom. The agency has been working with defense contractor Lockheed Martin to develop the technology that can overcome current noise restrictions for commercial supersonic flight over land and pave the way for establishing a new market of air travel. The project is known as X-59 Quiet Supersonic Technology or QueSST and, according to NASA, it is already taking shape – with assembly work ramping up towards the eventual first flight of the supersonic jet scheduled in 2021.
This year, the Paris Air Show saw the signing of the agreement that set the legal framework for the joint development of the Future Air Combat System (FCAS) European fighter jet program started by France and Germany and recently joined by Spain. Since then, Dassault and Airbus have been eagerly waiting for the green light to start developing their demonstrators.
An Antonov An-72 cargo plane operated by the Congolese Air Force crashed near Punia in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The aircraft was transporting logistical support for the president Félix Tshisekedi.
Airbus has delivered the 1,000th A320neo Family aircraft to IndiGo. The millenial aircraft is the Airbus A321neo variant.  
Porsche and Boeing are forming a partnership to explore premium urban air mobility market. The two companies have just signed a Memorandum of Understanding, as announced on October 10, 2019, under which they agreed to create a joint team “to address” aspects such as the possible use cases of premium vehicles and the market potential. 
Lufthansa has announced its latest traffic results, including figures for its two mainline subsidiaries and the low-cost carrier Eurowings, which is showcasing worrying trends as the calm flight season of fall begins.
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36 Boeing 737 NG affected by pickle fork cracks so far

Daily Newsletter | October 10, 2019
Aeroflot is keeping busy these days when it comes to sprucing up its fleet. The Russian flag carrier has cancelled its long-standing order for 22 Boeing 787 Dreamliners, as the airline awaits the arrival of its all-new Airbus A350XWB wide-body aircraft next year. The move will present another blow to Boeing, as the company seeks new business for the 787 in order to avoid future production rates cut.
After the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued an Airworthiness Directive (AD) on October 3, 2019, operators of Boeing 737NG aircraft, models 737-600, -700, -700C, -800, -900, and -900ER, were forced to check for cracks on left and right-hand side suspension system, which connects the fuselage with the wings. The system, nicknamed the pickle fork, was designed to safely handle 90,000 flight cycles – the total lifespan of a Boeing 737 NG.
The Dutch Ministry of Defense announced the planned acquisition of nine additional Lockheed Martin F-35A fighter jets. The contract is valued at €1 billion and should eventually be followed by another order for six more aircraft.
For the past few months neither 737 MAX operators, nor the aviation authorities could provide a clear answer to the question of when the grounded aircraft will return. While Boeing has previously indicated that the troubled narrow-body will return to service in Q4 of 2019, leaving them two months to see their hopes come to fruition, airlines are a lot more skeptical while planning their schedules ahead of time.
After finding cracks in the right and left side wing trailing edges of in-service Airbus A380s, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has issued an airworthiness directive ordering operators to have inspections and, when needed, modifications performed on their superjumbos. 
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Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 767 catches fire; lands safely in Dakar

Daily Newsletter | October 9, 2019
Ten years after the initial request for tender, the Indian Minister of Defense, Shri Rajnath Singh, received the first of 36 Rafale fighter jets ordered from Dassault Aviation and destined to equip the Indian Air Force.
Presented at the Paris Air Show in 2019, the ATR42-600S has been officially launched by the Franco-Italian regional aircraft manufacturer. ATR says it has already received 20 commitments for its new Short Take-Off and Landing (STOL) plane.
An Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 767-300ER registered ET-AMG, has encountered a serious problem on Flight ET908 when the right-hand engine of the aircraft caught fire, forcing the flight crew to declare an emergency.
The U.S. based manufacturer has announced its deliveries for Q3 2019. The results showcase that Boeing, which is still battling the aftermath of the two deadly 737 MAX crashes, has not yet recovered, as commercial aircraft deliveries have fallen further. In total, Boeing delivered 63 commercial aircraft to customers – compared to Q3 2018 result of 190 deliveries, the latest numbers show a drop of 66.8%.
An F-16C fighter jet belonging to the United States Air Force crashed near Zemmer, close to the German border with Luxembourg, on October 8, 2019. The aircraft was on a training flight involving several other F-16s at the time of the incident.
One of the two largest commercial passenger aircraft builders, Boeing, is taking a step to conquer commercial passenger space flights as well. On October 8, 2019, the company announced its planned $20 million investment into Virgin Galactic, to this day the only company which has put humans into space in a vehicle built for commercial service, according to Boeing.
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