Delta orders 10 more A321s

Courtesy: Delta Air Lines.

After announcing orders for 30 incremental Airbus A321ceo aircraft just last month, Atlanta, Georgia (U.S.)-based Delta Air Lines has placed an order for 10 more of the aircraft. The agreement was announced today at the Paris Air Show.

Like previous Delta orders for the A321, the 10 aircraft announced today are for the Current Engine Option version of the largest Airbus A320 Family member. The airline took delivery of its first A321 in March of last year. Delta now has ordered a total of 122 A321s, each powered by CFM56 engines from CFM International.

“The A321 is fast becoming a favorite aircraft of our customers and employees alike,” said Greg May, Delta’s Senior Vice President – Supply Chain Management and Fleet. “Its excellent operating economics and customer capacity also make it a great fit for our U.S. domestic network.”

“This order for 10 more A321s from Delta shows yet again the confidence this great airline has in this great aircraft,” said John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer – Customers for Airbus Commercial Aircraft. “Passengers, airline crews and investors look to the A320 Family to deliver unsurpassed comfort, economy and reliability. We are most gratified to keep providing Delta with the aircraft platforms on which they can deliver their own, unique brand of ‘service and hospitality from the heart.’”

All of Delta’s A321s feature fuel-saving Sharklets – lightweight composite wingtip devices that offer up to 4 percent fuel-burn savings. This environmental benefit gives airlines the option of extending their range up to 100 nautical miles/185 kilometres or increasing payload capacity by some 1000 pounds/450 kilograms.

Many of Delta’s A321s are being delivered from the Airbus U.S. Manufacturing Facility in Mobile, Alabama. The airline received its first U.S.-manufactured A321 last year. By the end of 2017, the Airbus facility in Mobile is expected to produce four aircraft per month, most going to Airbus’ U.S. customers.

As of the end of May, Delta was flying a fleet of 188 Airbus aircraft, including 146 A320 Family members and 42 A330 widebodies. Later this year, Delta will become the first U.S. airline to operate the new Airbus A350 XWB, or eXtra Wide Body aircraft. Delivery of Delta’s first A350 is slated for this summer.

Source: Airbus.

Airbus launches new A320 Airspace interior

Courtesy: Airbus.

Expanding on their successful 2016 introduction of the A330neo and A350, Airbus announced the A320 joins the Airspace family. The brand DNA is based on a consistent range of strong cabin product elements which provide both tangible benefits to passengers and differentiation to airlines. The A320 will not only share common cockpit ergonomics with the wide-bodies, but will also have a common cabin design language and the latest technology. Some of the enhanced elements of the new interior include:

  • The Largest Overhead Storage Compartment (OHSC) in its Class: Called the “Airspace Bin”, it not only allows eight, instead of five bags, per four-frame bin, but also accommodates bigger and heavier bags stowed vertically.
  • Iconic Ceiling Lighting: Featuring a fully customized on-board luminary experience, that begins at the entrance with a welcoming ambiance and continues throughout the aircraft with variable lighting features.
  • New Sidewall Panels with Increased Cabin Width: One more inch at shoulder level for extra personal space.
  • New Window Bezel: The new fully-integrated window shades provide passengers more window space and unobstructed view, evoking the feel of the A350.
  • New Lavatory Design: The new spacious design also features coloured mood lighting, along with anti-bacterial coatings, automatic aroma dispenser, sound and optional touchless options.
  • Coloured LED Lighting: Leveraging 16.4 million colour options, the new custom-cabin mood lighting creates a personalized in-flight experience at 30,000 feet throughout the cabin.
  • Harmonized Door Surround: The new lines of the frames match the Airspace design of the A350 XWB and the A330neo.

“The A350 XWB cabin has proven extremely popular, with great feedback not only from passengers, but from design professionals,” commented Dr. Kiran Rao, Executive Vice President, Product Strategy, Airbus Commercial Aircraft. “This was great validation that gave us confidence to apply the design language to the A330neo and now to the A320 Family.”

Courtesy: Airbus.

Airlines expressed great interest in the new A320 Airspace’s increased overhead storage when revealed to customers at AIX Expo in April. “The A320 offers airlines 40 percent more volume for their passengers’ bags, accommodating larger carry-on bag dimensions than competing single-aisle airliners,” said Ingo Wuggetzer, Vice President, Cabin Marketing. “More overhead space means quicker boarding times, a value-add for passenger, and a better overall experience.”

Additional features such as the less obtrusive cabin sidewall panels and lavatory options (‘Smart-Lav’ and ‘Space-Flex’) maintain a consistent design to the popular Airspace wide-body series. Passengers will also appreciate the modular IFE platform with overhead video and in-seat audio/video on-demand, as well as the provision for in-seat power, wireless flexible connectivity and mobile telephony (GSM on board). The full Airspace Interior package is targeted for 2020 and will retrofit to the current hardware.

Airbus is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. In 2016, it generated revenues of €67billion and employed a workforce of around 134,000. Airbus offers the most comprehensive range of passenger airliners from 100 to more than 600 seats. Airbus is also a European leader providing tanker, combat, transport and mission aircraft, as well as Europe’s number one space enterprise and the world’s second largest space business. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide.

Source: Airbus.

Lufthansa to expand Europe network: Six new Frankfurt destinations for the winter now fixed

Courtesy: Deutsche Lufthansa.

Lufthansa will today (June 06th, 2017) launch into the winter season with six new destinations in Europe from Frankfurt. Kuusamo (Finland), Cluj and Timișoara (both in Romania) will be offered from Frankfurt for the first time, supplementing the Lufthansa flight offer. The Lufthansa summer destinations Reykjavik (Iceland), Palermo (Italy) and Santiago de Compostela (Spain) will also be offered all year round from Frankfurt for the first time. The new destinations for winter 2017/18 are available for booking effective immediately.

Focus on Romania

The Romanian cities of Cluj and Timişoara will be offered daily from Frankfurt for the first time with the start of the new winter flight plan 2017/18 (valid from 29 October 2017) and included in Lufthansa’s Europe offer. The two major cities have already been offered successfully from Munich for several years. Lufthansa will thereby offer its passengers four city connections from Germany to Romania, in addition to the popular connections to Bucharest and Sibiu (from Munich only). This considerably expanded offer provides both business travellers and holidaymakers numerous direct connections to destinations in Romania.

The economic centre of Cluj in Transylvania is one of the largest cities in Romania and has some 2.5 million inhabitants in its wide catchment area. The surroundings boast a beautiful landscape of mountains, forests and lakes, and invite visitors to hike through nature. The inner city of Cluj is characterised by historic buildings. Numerous churches are available for viewing.

Today, Timișoara is the historic, economic and cultural centre of the Banat. The modern, multicultural city is characterised by Baroque and Art Nouveau buildings. To this day, Timișoara is also known as “little Vienna”. The city owes this name to its architecture as well as to its charm. But today more than ever, Timișoara enjoys another epithet: “City of Roses and Parks”, which invite visitors to linger.

Kuusamo to become the fourth Lufthansa Lapland destination

Starting from 23 December 2017, there will be a flight every Saturday from Frankfurt to northern Finnish Kuusamo. Due to its nature and the ski sports centre Ruka, Kuusamo has become one of the major tourist centres in Finland. Together with Tromsø, Ivalo and Kittilä, (Lufthansa offers Kittilä from Munich only), Kuusamo is now the fourth Lapland destination to be included by Europe’s largest airline, due to its popularity among winter sports lovers and fans of the Northern Lights.

Reykjavik, Palermo and Santiago de Compostela now included in the flight plan all year round

Good news as well for all Iceland, Sicily and Spain fans: The existing Lufthansa summer destinations of Reykjavik, Palermo and Santiago de Compostela will now also be continued during the winter due to the strong demand. Three times a week, you can fly from Frankfurt to the Icelandic capital Reykjavik. There will also be up to two flights per week to Palermo from Frankfurt in the winter. Santiago de Compostela can now be visited all year round from Frankfurt three times a week, and once a week from Munich.

Further information and booking options for Lufthansa flights can be found online at LH.com or via the Lufthansa Service Center by phone at (069) 86 799 799 (landline rates). Flights can also be booked from Lufthansa travel agency partners as well as at the Lufthansa sales counters at airports.

The new connections at a glance:

Frankfurt (FRA) – Cluj (CLJ)

  • Once daily (from 29 October 2017)
  • LH1412: FRA 14:45 – 17:50 CLJ
  • LH1413: CLJ 18:35 – 19:45 FRA
  • Price: from EUR 159 including taxes and fees
  • Distance: 1,173 km (634 nautical miles)
  • Embraer 190

Frankfurt – Timișoara (TSR)

  • Once daily (from 29 October 2017)
  • LH1416: FRA 09:00 – 11:50 TSR
  • LH1417: TSR 12:45 – 13:45 FRA
  • Price: from EUR 149 including taxes and fees
  • Distance: 1,062 km (573 nautical miles)
  • Embraer 190

Frankfurt (FRA) – Kuusamo (KAO)

  • Once a week (Saturday from 23.12.2017)
  • LH872: FRA 10:05 – 14:10 KAO
  • LH873: KAO 15:15 – 17:30 FRA
  • Price: from EUR 199 including taxes and fees
  • Distance: 2,134 km (1152 nautical miles)
  • Airbus A319

Frankfurt – Reykjavik (KEF)

  • Three times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday from 29 October 2017)
  • LH1416: FRA 11:40 – 14:35 KEF
  • LH1417: KEF 15:25 – 20:05 FRA
  • Price: from EUR 229 including taxes and fees
  • Distance: 2,408 km (1,300 nautical miles)
  • Airbus A320

Frankfurt – Palermo (PMO)

  • Up to twice a week (Saturday, Sunday from 29 October 2017)
  • LH1416: FRA 13:50 – 16:05 PMO
  • LH1417: PMO 17:15 – 19:40 FRA
  • Price: from EUR 109 including taxes and fees
  • Distance: 1,365 km (737 nautical miles)
  • Airbus A320 or A321

Frankfurt – Santiago de Compostela (SCQ)

  • Three times a week (Monday, Thursday, Friday from 29 October 2017)
  • LH1110: FRA 09:50 – 12:30 SCQ
  • LH1111: SCQ 13:50 – 16:15 FRA
  • Price: from EUR 129 including taxes and fees
  • Distance: 1,522 km (822 nautical miles)
  • Airbus A320

Source: Deutsche Lufthansa.

Austrian Airlines – From Now On: Internet on short and medium-haul flights

Courtesy: Austrian Airlines.

Austrian Airlines launches Internet on board in real time operation. Two aircraft are “online” effective immediately, and starting tomorrow another 10 jets will be added. All 31 Airbus aircraft of the Austrian Airlines fleet have already been technically converted to enable Internet use, and will be successively “activated” in the current month of May 2017. Accordingly, passengers will also be able to use the Internet on short-haul and medium-haul flights as they fly above the clouds, and choose one of three different Internet rates: FlyNet Message for three euros, FlyNet Surf for seven euros and FlyNet Stream for twelve euros for each leg of the journey. FlyNet Message only allows for use of messaging services such as e-mail, WhatsApp or iMessage, whereas passengers can also surf on the Internet with the FlyNet Surf option. Streaming is possible with the FlyNet Stream tariff. All three packages can be billed via credit card or the payment service PayPal.

“We have thoroughly tested the new technology in recent months on five Airbus jets and 3,000 flights. Now I am pleased to be able to offer Internet above the clouds”, says Austrian Airlines CCO Andreas Otto.

The offering of Austrian Airlines and its technology partner Inmarsat is based on the most advanced broadband satellite technology Ka band). This ensures reliable Internet coverage on short-haul and medium-haul flights on the basis of the Inmarsat network Global Xpress (GX). Deutsche Telekom serves as the Internet service provider and partner of Inmarsat.

Digital entertainment program as of the summer of 2017

At present Austrian Airlines is working on a new, digital entertainment program. This is expected to come on stream and be made available to passengers via the WLAN network starting in the summer of 2017. This means that passengers with a FlyNet Surf or FlyNet Stream package will be able to use their mobile devices to access an entertainment program consisting of films and series. In line with passenger requests, it is still not allowed to make telephone calls on board Austrian Airlines flights.

Source: Austrian Airlines.

The Airbus A319neo takes to the skies

Courtesy: Airbus.

The first Airbus A319neo performed its maiden flight today (March 31th, 2017), The smallest member of the A320neo Family, powered by CFM International LEAP-1A engines took off from Hamburg and landed in Toulouse after a 5 hour flight.

It was piloted by Experimental test pilots Michel Gagneux and Eckard Hausser. They were assisted in the cockpit by Test-Flight Engineer Jean Michel Pin, while two flight test engineers Sylvie Loisel-Labaste and David O’nions directed the flight from the aircraft’s Test Engineer station.

This flight was the occasion for the crew to assess the general handling of the aircraft and to check the main systems. The A319neo, registered as D-AVWA, will be based in Toulouse in order to complete its flight test programme.

The A320neo Family is the world’s best-selling single aisle product line with over 5,000 orders received from over 90 customers, capturing almost 60 percent share of the market. The A320neo Family incorporates latest technologies including new generation engines and Sharklet wing tip devices, which together deliver more than 15 percent in fuel savings from day one and 20 percent by 2020.

Thanks to their widest cabin, all members of the A320neo Family offer unmatched comfort in all classes and Airbus’ 18” wide seats in economy as standard.

With one aircraft in three sizes (A319neo, A320neo & A321neo), the A320neo Family, seating from 100 to 240 passengers, seamlessly covers the entire single-aisle segment from low to high-density domestic to longer range routes.

The A319neo is the smallest member of the A320neo Family; it offers its operators superior short field performance in hot and high conditions. It can accommodate up to 160 passengers without compromise on the comfort.

Source: Airbus.

Airbus: Clean Sky marks progress toward a “greener” air transport industry

Courtesy: Airbus.

The first eight-year phase of the European Union’s Clean Sky joint technology initiative – which targets significant reductions in noise, CO2 and NOX emissions for air transportation – came to an end last year.

Included in this activity was the flight testing of a more “green” electrical environmental control system on Airbus’ in-house A320 testbed aircraft, while a new high voltage direct current (HVDC) electrical network underwent ground testing.

“Phase One gave us an opportunity to investigate solutions in depth,” said Michel Guigou, head of Overall Systems Design (OSD) for Airbus Commercial Aircraft’s Research and Technology team. “Together with Liebherr and GKN, we considered the best use of energy aboard aircraft, typically electrical technologies.” Using electricity for the onboard environmental control system reduces fuel consumption as well as emissions when compared to the traditional method – which draws air from the aircraft’s jet engines.

Clean Sky’s first phase also provided the opportunity to further explore HVDC electrical networks that are lighter and less complex than the A/C (alternating current) technology now used on aircraft. “Better architecture and technologies mean we can expect a competitive solution to be ready by 2025,” added Airbus electrical power engineer Gaetan Bisson.

Additionally, research into noise reduction technologies for flight paths flown during airport approaches and departures was conducted in conjunction with Thales – evaluating systems to optimally manage the flight phase or trajectory, thereby reducing aircraft operational noise.

Source: Airbus.

Surfing above the clouds: Lufthansa and Austrian Airlines going online on short haul and mid-range flights too

Courtesy: Deutsche Lufthansa.

Send emails from a height of 10,000 meters, do your online shopping while soaring over the Alps, stream videos above the clouds – and all of that with broadband quality. Soon, passengers of Lufthansa and Austrian Airlines will be able to go online on shorter journeys too – as they have already been able to do for some time on long haul flights.

Last summer, Lufthansa received the so-called Supplemental Type Certificate for the Airbus fleet A320 from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), and successfully concluded all the necessary preparation work. Now the next stage of testing on Lufthansa and Austrian routes will start, initially involving five aircraft in each case. Passengers who fly on these aircraft will be offered free Internet use during this test phase. The analysis of the user behaviour will provide the data necessary to further enhance the service ahead of its market launch.

Harry Hohmeister, member of the Board of Directors of Deutsche Lufthansa AG and responsible for Hub Management, says “I am pleased that we can soon offer broadband Internet to our passengers on inner-European flights, giving them the chance to have a seamless digital experience. Since the launch of Lufthansa Flynet, it has been our goal to offer added value on board to our customers through innovation – and that also includes our Internet provision”.

In the first quarter of 2017, the number of Lufthansa aircraft fitted out with Internet access will rise to around 20. One by one, the entire Lufthansa A320 fleet is to be equipped with the latest advanced technology by the middle of 2018. The re-fitting of all 31 aircraft at Austrian Airlines is planned to be completed before the end of April 2017. As well as Lufthansa and Austrian Airlines, Eurowings also has plans to bring the Internet on board its aircraft – estimated launch is to be by the end of the first quarter 2017. A total of 69 Eurowings aircraft are to be fitted with the systems by the summer of 2017.

Lufthansa passengers can gain Wifi access to the Internet using their own mobile devices. As well as email services, applications such as video streaming will be possible too. Market launch of the new service is scheduled to take place sometime during the first quarter of the year. Customers will then be able to choose between three different service packages – FlyNet Message for EUR 3, FlyNet Surf for EUR 7 and FlyNet Stream for EUR 12 per flight. Whilst FlyNet Message only allows the use of messaging services such as email, WhatsApp or iMessage, FlyNet Surf also enables passengers to surf the Internet. With the FlyNet Stream service package, streaming is also possible. The packages can be paid for by credit card or via payment services such as Paypal.

The Internet service of Lufthansa Airlines and their technology partner Inmarsat uses the latest broadband satellite technology (Ka-band) and provides seamless, reliable coverage on short haul and mid-range flights via the Inmarsat network Global Xpress (GX). Inmarsat partner Deutsche Telekom will be the Internet Service Provider for Lufthansa passengers.

Lufthansa Technik is responsible for the fitting of all the systems and components, as well as dealing with the required Aviation regulations and other statutory authorisations. They are fitting out the entire Airbus A320 family of the Lufthansa Group Airlines with the latest Ka-band satellite technology. By spring, almost 100 aircraft are scheduled to have been equipped. The aircraft can be fitted with the required antennae and routers on a series of ten production lines, working simultaneously, at the Lufthansa Technik sites. On account of the only minimally-invasive adjustments needed to the aircraft structure, the rapid re-fitting of even large fleets is possible – generally involving just four days downtime per aircraft.

Lufthansa Systems is providing the necessary technical infrastructure for Internet connection on board. This includes the network operations in the aircraft – the technical pre-requisite for Wifi on board – as well as the provision of the necessary software for the operation of the FlyNet portal, through which the customer gains access to the net.

Within the framework of their global partnership, Lufthansa Systems and Lufthansa Technik are in addition providing a modern, multi-functional digital platform (BoardConnect) to enable digital use cases ranging from entertainment to ancillary revenues. Both Lufthansa Group Airlines and external customers will profit from this strong cooperation arrangement.

As long ago as 15 January, 2003, Lufthansa was the operator of the first commercial long haul flight worldwide to have broadband Internet access. The service had to be taken off the market in 2006 despite its technically reliable system and its growing popularity with passengers, because the necessary “Connexion by Boeing” satellites ceased operations. Since the end of 2010, Lufthansa has again been offering broadband Internet access on its inter-continental flights – once again as worldwide first. And since June 2015, FlyNet has been available on all current 107 Lufthansa long haul aircraft, With the addition of the Boeing 777 to the fleet, the group’s subsidiary SWISS also started offering Internet on its long haul flights; for the short haul and mid-range, its introduction is currently also under consideration.

Source: Deutsche Lufthansa.