Rescuing a polar bear cub: Long-time readers of this column know we’re fascinated with polar bears, so when we received the following press release, we couldn’t help but share the story with you.
Mi-26 saves polar bear cub
The crew of a Russian Mi-26 military helicopter from the Eastern Military District Army Aviation airbase saved a baby polar bear from starving to death in the Arctic, after the young bear became separated from its mother.
The Mi-26 was carrying out a routine transport flight in the Arctic zone, delivering goods from Anadyr to Wrangel Island, when one of the crew spotted a lone polar bear cub wandering along the Chukotka shore. The crew carried out several sweeps of the area, but there was no trace of the cub’s mother. The decision was therefore taken to pick up the polar bear cub.
Embraer had the opportunity to design a clean-sheet airplane as a successor to the E-Jet to respond to the Bombardier CSeries, with the 100-110 seat CS100 a direct competitor to the E-190/195.
But after Airbus and Boeing launched the A320neo and 737 MAX families, including the small A319neo and 737-7 MAX, officials chose the more conservative play to re-engine the E-Jet at an estimated cost of $1.7bn. An entirely new airplane meant up-sizing to be directly competitive with the CS300 and the Baby Airbus and Boeing. This would have been a crowded field that didn’t make sense.
That said, this is an industry that requires long-term planning. Luis Carlos Affonso, SVP of Operations and COO Commercial Aviation, says Embraer needs more than one family of airplanes. The question is, what becomes the next family.
The news last week that Bombardier reorganized its business units, laid off another 1,800 employees and saw the retirement of Guy Hachey, president and CEO of the aerospace division, was viewed by some media and observers as an indictment of the CSeries program. While it’s certainly true that delays in the program weigh heavily on BBD, the problems don’t stop with CSeries.
Slow sales of the CRJ, Q400 and business jets–as well as program development issues with a new corporate jet–all combined to drag down financial performance and bleed cash. Bombardier doesn’t have the balance sheet strength of Boeing or Airbus, nor strong sales of other airplane family members, to weather the challenges of new airplane development programs.
Orders continued to trickle in as the Farnborough Air Show winds down (there could be others not listed here).
Items of interest:
Here are the orders we’ve seen for today (there could be more); this should pretty well do it for the show, though it does continue through Friday and there probably will be a few more deals:
Items of interest:
Here are the orders and commitments announced today that we saw–there could be others we haven’t seen:
Items of note:
Here are orders that were announced on the first official day of the Farnborough Air Show (at least the ones we’ve seen from Seattle–feel free to add to the list if we’ve missed any):
Things of note:
The sniping between Airbus and Boeing continues:
No 90-seat ATR: Aviation Week reports that for now Airbus Group, which owns 50% of ATR, won’t green-light a 90-seat ATR turbo-prop due to the adverse impact a development program would have on profits.
Competing for 777X work: Electroimpact is based near Paine Field in Washington and it supplies Boeing and Airbus. It’s interested in participating in the Boeing 777X work. The Everett Herald has this story focusing on the company. Meanwhile, Reuters has this story about the pressures the Airbus and Boeing supply chains are under to cut costs.
JAL: A350 was ‘better:’ Japan Air Lines says its choice of the Airbus A350 was made because the airplane was just “better” than Boeing’s offering. CNBC reports.
No highway in the sky: Just on the ground. See this series of photos to see what we’re talking about.
A350 Loan: The Wall Street Journal reports that Airbus and Germany ended talks about a state loan for the A350 program. Good. Airbus doesn’t need the loan and “divorcing” from state aid frees Airbus to make decisions for the production based on commercial considerations and not politically-driven jobs requirements.
Airbus is considering a second A350 production line to open up slots for the -1000 model. Germany made no secret that this line had to be in Hamburg in exchange for the loan. Our Market Intelligence indicates Airbus may want to locate the line outside Germany and perhaps outside Europe. Ridding itself of continue German meddling is a good thing for Airbus; now it “only” has the unions to deal with.
Bridging 777s: Jon Ostrower at The Wall Street Journal published this story today about Boeing’s plans to support the 777 Classic sales in advance of the 777X. He reports that Boeing will try to pair 777 Classic orders with the 777X (something we forecast months ago). Boeing is also going to launch a 777 P2F program, persuading airlines to sell their older 777s to cargo carriers and replace them with new 777 Classic orders. This is a challenge because of the continuing softness in the cargo market and plenty of 747-400s available for conversion and 747-400Fs parked in the desert. Such a plan will make it increasingly difficult to support sales of the new-build 747-8F as well.
Although Boeing said it won’t shave the price on the 777 Classic to stimulate sales, we think it will (as it has on the 737 NG).
Embraer nabs E2 customer: Embraer today announced it won an order from an Indian airline for 50 E190 E2s and 50 E195 E2s with options for 50 each. The airline, Air Costa, is a current E1 customer. This is the first E2 order since the launch of the program at the Paris Air Show last June.
Reuters has an article from the Singapore Air Show quoting the Air Costa CEO. The article takes a look at the “small” aircraft market.
IAM chief speaks out: The president of the International Association of Machinists, Tom Buffenbarger, called the Puget Sound Business Journal to talk about the controversial Boeing 777X contract vote.
Why would Buffenbarger do this? He’s facing his first contested election since 1961 and his opponent is from IAM District 751 right here in Seattle. The article makes fascinating reading.
MC-21 profile: A Russian newspaper provides a profile of the Irkut MC-21 (or MS-21 or Yak-242). Talk about confused branding.
ATR presses Airbus: ATR, the world’s leading maker of turbo-prop airliners, is pressing Airbus Group to green-light its proposed 90-seat, clearn-sheet turbo-prop, Bloomberg News reports.
Airbus Group owns 50% of ATR; Alenia owns the other 50%. ATR’s CEO wants to change this legal structure, reports The Wall Street Journal.
According to the news reports, Airbus is concerned about the diversion of engineering resources. Maybe this is why. Airbus is studying a “mega-twin” concept, reports Aviation Week. Of particular note is the reference that Airbus doesn’t plan to launch a new airplane in the next 10 years. We think these plans are going to have to change when Boeing launches a replacement for the 757, followed by the 737RS, which we have for the end of this decade.
But let’s get back to ATR.
Bombardier, the world’s #2 turbo-prop airliner producer, launched a high-density, 86-seat version of its venerable Q400 last year. China is going forward with a 90-seat turbo-prop and India is also interested in joining the fray.
ATR currently holds a 59% share of the future orders, options and Letters of Intents backlog.
Bombardier made some significant progress last year, signing large LOIs with Russia for 100 and with China. These should be converted to firm orders this year, but even so, ATR has a lopsided market lead.
Boeing Stratoliner: Boeing has a short profile of the B307 Stratoliner, the first pressurized airliner. It’s the 75th anniversary of this important airliner. The last surviving example is on display at the Steven Udvar-Hazy Museum at Washington Dulles Airport.
Boeing 777 model: It’s been over the Internet already but in case you’ve missed this, a 1/60th, highly detailed model of the Boeing 777 was carved out of manila folders. This is an amazing piece of artistry.