The planned relaunch of Jet Airways is likely to face further delays, with the airline continuing to face serious operational challenges that remain unresolved, casting doubt on its ability to meet its initial deadline of restarting flight operations by September.
ALSO READ - Jet Airways to only operate domestic flights as it resumes operations
Jet Airways emerged from bankruptcy proceedings with a change of ownership and planned to launch services during the September quarter after receiving the air operator certificate from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation on 20 May.
However, clarity is still awaited from the airline on the aircraft pipeline, and an announcement is awaited on the same in a few months.
Jet Airways CEO said on Twitter that they're working towards starting sales soon.
In July, the airline initiated the hiring method for pilots for Airbus A320, Boeing 737NG and Boeing 737MAX aircraft. Thus far, the airline has inducted two hundred employees.
ALSO READ - Jet Airways in advanced talks to order 50 Airbus A220
“We see that the airline is severe and is desperate to begin flights. However, they need to determine the aircraft and method. The regulator engages within the slotting procedure and different steps part of the method before beginning flights. This could take at least weeks after the airline declares its aircraft order. A launch of flights this month is unlikely.” A senior official stated.
Jet airways shut operations in April 2019 because of a severe financial crisis. For two years, the airline underwent a resolution technique beneath the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.
In May, the airline used a Boeing 737 aircraft to prove flights for the air operator certificate.
The airline is set to induct a few planes on hire for initial operations however has been in talks with both Airbus and Boeing for an order of new aircraft.
The airline is considering Airbus A320, A220 and Boeing B737 MAX options for the new aircraft order they delivered. Even as Jet airways was a complete-carrier provider before it became grounded, the new Jet airways will probably offer a mix of low-price and premium offerings.
As we’ve always maintained, this is a marathon, no longer a dash, and we’re centred on getting the acceptable viable contracts for aircraft and engines to secure our destiny, the Jalan-Kalrock consortium spokesperson stated.
The Indian Air force (IAF) is looking to create a separate cadre for operating its Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), said Lt. Gen. A.K. Suri, Director General of Army Aviation on Tuesday, September 13 while a senior Indian Air Force (IAF) officer said that a proposal to develop an indigenous Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle (UCAV) had been taken up.
However, as the civil administration and states are fast adopting the indigenous civil drone industry, military drones are still being imported.
“This cadre will be of operators in terms of piloting and will reduce the load on helicopter pilots,” Lt. Gen. Suri said speaking at a seminar on UAVs organised by the Centre for Air Power Studies. Stating that the Indian Army has been using UAVs for the last two decades, he said they have primarily used them in the northern and western borders. A significant part of the surveillance is carried out by them.
IAF to develop its own indigenous Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle (UCAV)
The proposal is currently with the Army headquarters and once cleared, will be sent to the Defence Ministry for approval, officials said on its status. A similar proposal for a separate UAV cadre by the IAF has been long pending with the Defence Ministry for approval.
In August 2021, Army Aviation got control of the UAVs of the Army which were earlier under Artillery. The Army operates over 30 Heron UAVs procured from Israel.
"The IAF has a road map for induction of more capable medium-altitude long-endurance UAVs as well as high-altitude long-endurance UAVs. IAF is joining an indigenous effort to develop a UCAV and Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE) has been sanctioned to develop the niche technologies."Air Marshal Radhakrishnan Radhish, Senior Air Staff Officer (SASO), Western Air Command
The Bengaluru-based ADE is under the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
ALSO READ - All you need to know about SWiFT | India’s stealth drone technology
Stating that the “unmanned market” is expected to see significant growth in India, Air Marshal Radhish added that by 2026 it is anticipated to be the world’s third-largest market.
According to a report by EY India and FICCI, the potential of the Indian drone and its components manufacturing industry is USD 23 billion by 2030. The information holds the key to unlocking this potential in the synergy between various ministries that can deliver on a multi-fold agenda.
In the context of India, specifically, HALE drones are already in the pipeline.
High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) refers to a family of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) that can fly up to 10 days at 65,000 ft and even 20 days at 20,000-25,000 ft.
Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) flies between 10,000 ft and 30,000 ft and lasts for about a day or two in flight. Although only recently becoming ubiquitous in militaries worldwide, these drones perform various tasks, these can be used for combat, surveillance and reconnaissance support.
According to experts, “In the context of India, specifically, HALE drones are already in the pipeline. The Combat Air Teaming Systems (CATS) envisions a pseudo satellite named CATS Infinity. CATS is a larger, more ambitious project involving a team of heterogeneous drones that can unthinkably extend the aerial dominance of a pilot when working in tandem.”
Tactical Advanced Platform for Aerial Surveillance Beyond Horizon-201 (TAPAS BH-201) is the first made-in-India MALE drone that will be commissioned into the three services.
ALSO READ - India’s indigenous combat drone well on track to user-evaluation trials later this year
Besides Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) which has been working on a MALE drone, Rustom, for a while, state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is working on the MALE class too. Both DRDO and HAL are collaborating on CATS.
Tactical Advanced Platform for Aerial Surveillance Beyond Horizon-201 (TAPAS BH-201) is the first made-in-India MALE drone that will be commissioned into the three services. HAL is already working on six airframes for evaluation of the system.
Airbus all set to auction 500 parts of a retired Emirates A380 in October
Airbus is all set to auction 500 parts from a retired A380 in October, hoping to entice bids from enthusiasts of the superjumbo. The A380 was used by Emirates with registration A6-EDB but was retired in October 2020 and scrapped in October 2021.
The manufacturer is auctioning off items including lamps, the bar, stairs, handrails, trolleys, seats, paddles, and “even the cockpit rescue rope” from MSN13, which entered service in 2008.
Numerous travellers and aviation enthusiasts adore the iconic Airbus A380. In the past, there has been intense interest when scrapped aircraft parts have gone on sale, and sold-out signs have appeared quickly. The upcoming Airbus auction is probably going to follow the same pattern as the others so far.
Airbus is all set to auction 500 parts from a retired A380 in October
Next month Airbus will hold a three-day action from Thursday, October 13 to Saturday, October 15. The auction will take place in person in Toulouse and online at Interencheres.com. Most of the parts in the auction have been taken from an Emirates Airbus A380, which shows in the lots on offer.
The aircraft was deconstructed by TARMAC Aerosave, which was set up by Airbus, Safran and Suez, and aims for a recovery rate of more than 90% of an aircraft.
All sorts of aircraft parts are included in the listing. While most parts come from A6-EDB, some come from elsewhere in the Airbus A380 program.
The A380 was used by Emirates with registration A6-EDB but was retired in October 2020 and scrapped in October 2021.
Emirates first class suite Do Not Disturb signs, Overhead bins, Fuselage side panels, A380 Cabin rescue axes, Engine fan blades, Cockpit rescue rope, Toilet bowl and seat, Cockpit staircase, Economy and crew seats are some of the parts which are going to be auctioned.
It’s not the only Emirates A380 being broken up that enthusiasts can get their hands on. The carrier announced in November 2021 that it was teaming up with Falcon Aircraft Recycling to transform parts and materials from aircraft A6-EDA into furniture and other memorabilia.
ALSO READ - Emirates’ CEO wants Airbus to create a replacement for the A380 superjumbo
A6-EDB was the 13th Airbus A380 to be built by Airbus, taking its first flight on April 2, 2008. Emirates took delivery of the jet on October 24 of that year, making it the second to join the Dubai-based carrier.
A6-EDB was the 13th Airbus A380 to be built by Airbus, taking its first flight on April 2, 2008.
According to ch-aviation.com data, the aircraft completed 46,917 hours of flight, equivalent to 5,35 years in the skies. During this time, the plane completed 5,699 flight cycles.
According to FlightRadar24.com, the aircraft's final passenger flight was EK865 from Muscat to Dubai International Airport on February 23, 2020. This is Emirates' shortest Airbus A380 route.
The aircraft's last flight took place on October 27, 2020. A seven-hour flight took the plane to Tarbes, a Tarmac Aerosave facility in the south of France. The aircraft had been scrapped by October 2021.
ALSO READ - Airbus A380 makes a comeback as travel demand increases amidst high fuel prices
(With Inputs from AeroTime, Simple Flying)
World's largest amphibious aircraft, Chinese AG600 "Kunlong" successfully completes its maiden flight
14 Sep 2022
14 Sep 2022
According to reports, the second AG600M amphibious aircraft prototype completed its first flying test mission on September 10 in Zhuhai City, Guangdong Province, in southern China. AVIC, China's top aircraft manufacturer, reportedly made the announcement.
Large amphibious aircraft called the "AVIC AG600 Kunlong", was created by AVIC and put together by CAIGA. It is one of the biggest flying boats, having a 53.5 t (118,000 lb) MTOW, and is propelled by four WJ-6 turboprops. Following a five-year development period, assembly began in August 2014. it was unveiled on July 23, 2016, and on December 24, 2017, it took off from Zhuhai Airport.
Its successful maiden flight makes China among the world’s few countries capable of developing a large amphibious aircraftHuang Lingcai, chief designer of AG600, told state media Xinhua
According to the Aviation Industry Corporation of China, the successful flight represented an important step forward for the AG600 project and an improvement to the giant amphibious aircraft's firefighting functional model (AVIC).
It is to be noted that this new aircraft was specifically designed to carry out China's firefighting operations. The aircraft is also notable for being the first large, specialised aircraft of Chinese construction that satisfies the civil-aircraft regulations' airworthiness requirements.
The new AG600 can carry up to 12 tonnes of water and has a maximum take-off weight of 60 tonnes. The aircraft also features a pressurised cabin, a fly-by-wire flight control system, an integrated avionics system, and equipment for upcoming firefighting missions.
In challenging weather and environmental situations, the aircraft can rescue up to 50 people in a single flight. The aircraft is also capable of landing on land and taking off from it. The aircraft will enter service in 2023 and be used to put out fires. The Chinese Civil Aviation Administration will certify the firefighting and rescue versions of the AG600 in 2024 and 2025, respectively.
Tech and specs
The AG600 amphibious aircraft includes four WJ-6 turboprops, a tricycle retractable landing gear, cantilevered high wings, and a single-body flying boat fuselage. It can operate in areas of water up to 2.5 m (8.2 ft) deep and 1,500 by 200 m (4,920 by 660 ft) in size.
It should be able to function in Sea State 3 conditions with waves up to 2 m (6.6 ft) in height. It was designed for aerial firefighting, retrieving up to 50 people from the sea, gathering 12 t (26,000 lb) of water in 20 seconds, and transferring up to 370 t (820,000 lb) of water on a single tank of fuel (31 revolutions).
It weighs more than the MTOW of 41 t (90,000 lb). Beriev Be-200 or the ShinMaywa US-2, all of which weigh less than the prototype's 86 t (190,000 lb) A-40 Beriev.
Previous seaplanes carried more weight, such as the Martin JRM Mars at 75 t (165,000 lb) and the 100 t prototypes (220,000 lb) BV 238 Blohm & Voss, 156 t (345,000 lb) either the 180 t (400,000 lb) Hughes H-4 Hercules or the Saunders-Roe Princess.
Capacity50 rescued or 12 t (26,000 lb) of waterWingspan36.9 mHeight12.1 mMaximum Take-off weight53,500 kg (117,947 lb) from land, 49,800 kg (109,800 lb) from choppy seaPowerplant 4 × WJ-6 turbopropsPropellors 6-bladedCruise speed500 km/h Range4,500 kmEndurance12hService ceiling 6,000 mWikipedia
The Russian BE-200 | Global Fire Monitoring Centre
Once completed, the aircraft will supersede the US-2 from Japan and the BE-200 from Russia as the largest amphibious aircraft in the world.
There are speculations that the US Air Force is likewise attempting to build a powerful amphibious capability. To enable special operations from littoral locations, it apparently aims to develop an amphibious C-130 Hercules transport version. Given the substantial American presence in the Pacific and Indo-Pacific regions, having an amphibious plane available for emergencies becomes essential.
Haryana proposes a Pod car system between the old and new terminal building of Chandigarh airport
14 Sep 2022
14 Sep 2022
The Haryana government has proposed a cost-effective personalized rapid transport based on Pod car to provide faster connectivity between the old Chandigarh International Airport terminal and its new terminal building located in Mohali. 77 pods each with the capacity to ferry 6 passengers, luggage to be used.
The Pod car proposal was submitted by Haryana Chief Secretary Sanjeev Kaushal at a recent meeting here convened by Punjab Governor-cum-Chandigarh Administrator Banwari Lal Purohit and attended by senior officers of Haryana and Chandigarh.
The proposal, on implementation, will cut down on the long road travel which residents of Chandigarh and Panchkula and some parts of Mohali have to take at present, said an official statement here on Tuesday, September 13.
Haryana proposes a Pod car system between the old Chandigarh International Airport terminal and the new terminal building in Mohali
Chandigarh International Airport Limited is a joint venture company incorporated under the Companies Act, 2013 by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) in association with the Governments of Punjab and Haryana. The airport runway is located in Chandigarh while the international terminal is located on the south side of the runway in the village of Jhiurheri, Mohali.
He said that the current connectivity to the International terminal is such that passengers coming from Himachal Pradesh, Panchkula, and Ambala side International Airport have to cover a longer distance to reach the new international terminal.
Sanjeev Kaushal said that Haryana Metro Rail transport Corporation (HMRTC), a wholly-owned company of the Haryana Government, under Haryana Shahari Vikas Pradhikaran, has proposed a Pod car system to connect the old Airport terminal to the new Airport terminal which is cost-effective, convenient and requires only about 6 acres of land along the boundary of Chandigarh International Airport.
The ownership of this land will remain with the Air Force, it said. Notably, the airport lies in a defence airfield that is being used by civilian operators as well. The Air Traffic Control and runway operations lie with the IAF.
"A preliminary study has been conducted by HMRTC to provide connectivity between old Airport Terminal and New Airport Terminal of Chandigarh International Airport wherein the total land involved is approximately 6 acres only," he said.
The Pod car proposal was submitted by Haryana Chief Secretary Sanjeev Kaushal at a recent meeting
Kaushal said that 77 numbers of pods are initially envisaged to be placed in service for transporting passengers as well as goods. It will be a guided transit system fully secured with only two stoppages. Pods cannot be forcefully stopped in between and thus it addresses any security concern. The time travel will be only 8 to 10 minutes, he added.
"The project cost is just INR 231.50 crore, including INR 116 crore Infra cost," he said. He said the Chandigarh Union Territory administration is already in the process of providing road connectivity from Chandigarh to the airport's new terminal.
"Two alternative alignments have been suggested and submitted to Indian Air Force, as Chandigarh being the Defence Airport. The proposals are under consideration in the Ministry of Defence, Government of India," he said.
77 pods each with the capacity to ferry 6 passengers, luggage to be used.
However, the Chief Secretary explained that the two options of road connectivity under consideration are very costly and time-consuming due to the involvement in the acquisition of land and removal of unauthorized structures.
The recent meeting also decided that the UT administration will support the Pod car proposal and Haryana can go ahead with its implementation after necessary clearances from the Indian Air Force and the involvement of Chandigarh International Airport Limited, he said.
To cut down the distance and travel time two proposals - Underpass connectivity and Road Connectivity are under consideration for a long time.
However, the underpass connectivity faced objections from the IAF authorities because an underpass below the operational surface of the IAF station would not be acceptable for security reasons.
Road connectivity along the boundary wall of the IAF station was also proposed after clearing all obstructions within its 100 meters. This would have reduced the distance by 8-9 km. However, it involves the acquisition as well as the demolition of illegal construction. Due to this & various other reasons, the road connectivity projects also hang in the air, said the Haryana government statement.
Kaushal said that given the delay in implementation and non-finalisation of any proposal despite various meetings between the stakeholders, Haryana Government had proposed the Pod car connectivity at a much less cost, including land.
Tata Sons are the holding company of the Tata Group, which took over Air India from the government earlier this year. Ever since Tata Sons acquired Air India, there have been talks of a possible merger between the two airlines, both owned by the group.
Tata Sons have held exploratory talks with Singapore Airlines (SIA), its joint-venture partner in Vistara, for a potential merger of the airline with Air India.
Vistara is a joint venture between Tata Sons (51%) and Singapore Airlines (49%). The airline carried 1.01 million passengers and became the second largest airline by market share in July.
Vistara's CEO Vinod Kannan gave an update about the merger in a recent interview.
But Vistara is jointly owned by Singapore Airlines, which remained quite bullish about its prospects in India, and which is why the merger depends on Singapore’s Competition Commission being convinced about the cleanliness of the deal.
ALSO READ - Singapore Competition Commission concerned about Tata Group’s acquisition of Air India
Vinod Kannan, the CEO of Vistara said in an interview that they were already at a pre-Covid level in November last year and currently are 25% more than the pre-Covid level.
"All possibilities are being discussed. Since we are a joint venture, the two shareholders will have to discuss a road-map for the future. Whether it’s going to be a merger, or we will have two separate airlines are all options that are still on the table.However, if this leads to a commercial agreement such as a codeshare or an interline agreement (something that allows passengers to book connecting flights across two airlines) will probably be the next step, which we have not started discussing.Air India and Vistara are still independent entities until a decision is made on how they will work together. We do not have any code share with Air India but we have started working on those lines by having the ‘flight interruption agreement’ (that allows the two airlines to offer first available alternative flights in case of a disruption, to lessen passenger inconvenience).To be sure, the discussions have begun and according to me, we should have a clarity on this in the next few months." Vinod Kannan, CEO, Vistara
The Tata Group won the bid to acquire Air India in October 2021, and the airline was transferred to its new owner in January. Vistara was launched in 2015.
While Vistara has been established as a premium airline brand in the domestic segment, Air India’s strength lies in the international markets, especially the US and Europe. Currently, Air India is the only Indian carrier that flies to the US; Air India and Vistara are the only ones that fly to Europe.
ALSO READ - Vistara may merge with Air India, a decision expected by end of 2023
(With Inputs from The Hindustan Times)