Traveller, 7 June 2018
Two of Airbus’s flagship A380 superjumbos are headed for the scrap heap after a search for new operators failed to secure firm bids.
Negotiations with British Airways, Iran Air and Hi Fly, a Portuguese charter specialist, ended without any deals, German investment fund Dr. Peters, which manages the planes, said in a statement to shareholders. The aircraft are already parked in the foothills of the French Pyrenees, where they will be filleted over the next two years by a specialist company and sold in parts.
Sydney Morning Herald, 18 April 2018
Qantas’ “out there” idea to develop a new travel class in the cargo hold is aimed at getting middle-class Americans to shake off their reluctance to fly long-haul across the Pacific, Fairfax Media has learned. Last month, Fairfax Media revealed Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce had begun exploring a new “cargo class” concept which could be installed on super long-haul direct flights from Sydney to the US and London.
The Guardian, 9 February 2018
Once there were three on the flight deck. Then the number of flight crew fell to two when the Boeing 757 changed the way cockpits were designed in the 1980s. Now, jetmakers are studying what it would take to go down to a single pilot, starting with cargo flights.
The Guardian, 5 February 2018
Ryanair’s chief executive, Michael O‘Leary, has warned that the airline will not bow to “laughable” demands from pilots and would rather see strikes or disruptions than undermine its productivity. O’Leary said Ryanair was not as optimistic as some of its rivals that it would be able to push through fare rises this summer. Last year, the average fare was €41 (£36), down 13% from the year before. This year, fares will be cut by about 3%, Ryanair said.
The Guardian, 30 January 2018
A Qantas plane powered partly by mustard seeds has become the world’s first biofuel flight between Australia and the United States, after landing in Melbourne on Tuesday. The 15-hour flight used a blended fuel that was 10% derived from the brassica carinata, an industrial type of mustard seed that functions as a fallow crop – meaning it can be grown by farmers in between regular crop cycles.
ABC News, 17 January 2018
Qantas has been ranked in a new study as the worst major airline for fuel efficiency and carbon emissions when flying across the Pacific. The International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) has analysed the fuel emissions of 20 major airlines conducting trans-Pacific flights. It ranked Qantas the worst in 2016, finding it burned on average 64 per cent more fuel per passenger-kilometre than the top ranked airlines, China-based Hainan and Japan’s ANA. A “passenger-kilometre” is defined as how many people you can fly 1 kilometre on 1 litre of fuel.
Traveller, 29 November 2017
An Irish aircraft leasing company is creating its own airline because it can’t find anyone to borrow its A380 superjumbos. Dublin-based Amedeo counts eight A380s among its fleet, and has a further 20 on order from Airbus, but such is the lack of interest in the world’s largest passenger plane that it has been unable to renew its leases, or find new customers, despite months of negotiations.
CNN Money, 5 October 2017
The aerospace giant is buying Aurora Flight Sciences, a maker of automated drones and aviation parts, in a bid to bring increased automation to airliners, military drones and even personal air taxis. “The combined strength and innovation of our teams will advance the development of autonomy for our commercial and military systems,” said Greg Hyslop, chief technology officer and senior vice president of Boeing Engineering, Test & Technology in a statement.
Crikey, 10 October 2017
One of the worst things about flying before the jet age began on a large scale in the late ’50s was turbulence, and resulting air sickness. But there are warnings, as well as some statistical claims, that things are getting rougher than before, despite the apparent smoothness of jet travel that has long been taken for granted by generations of air travellers. This week’s “return to your seat and buckle up” contribution to the genre comes from America’s ABC. It is based on an article in Geophysical Research Letters journal, and as is often the case, the general news story has a high tease-to-factual-content ratio that makes it less than useful to those of us who want to know what it is really about and how it might affect them.
New York Times, 30 September 2017
Airports are a major global business, part of an industry that by one estimate transports the equivalent of nearly half the world’s population in a single year. But the world’s airports were largely designed for an older era — a cooler one.