September 2017

 Silent running at Sacramento

Sacramento International airport has taken a further step in the transition towards a more environmentally-friendly airport, having secured an FAA grant.

Proterra sept 2017The award of US$2m will allow it to pay for half the cost of five shuttle buses and charging stations. Proterra has been chosen as the vehicle supplier and these buses are expected to enter service next year, carrying passengers between car parks, terminals and car rental facilities.

The airport also plans to open a large, on-site solar farm this year, which will produce up to one-third of the facility’s electrical needs.

Together, the buses and solar facility will reduce airport costs and lighten the airport’s environmental footprint. The solar farm alone is expected to save US$850,000 year. The new buses will supplement the airport’s existing fleet, which runs on compressed natural gas.

Florida’s Sarasota Manatee Airport Authority Awarded $7 Million Grant for Airport ImprovementsBus Network Redesigns Are the ‘Hottest Trend in Transit’The buses and solar facility will reduce airport costs and lighten the airport’s environmental footprint, officials said. The solar farm is expected to save $850,000 year.The new buses will supplement the airport’s existing fleet, which runs on compressed natural gas. “In the long run, it is much more economical to run electric vehicles, and at the same time we are not contributing to greenhouse gas emissions,” spokeswoman Laurie Slothower said.

September 2017

Flying high

New Flyer of AmeriGroundbreaking with gold shovels at NFA Anniston, Alabama (CNW Group/New Flyer Industries Inc.)ca, the US subsidiary of New Flyer Industries, the transit bus and motor coach manufacturer and parts distributor, has broken ground on a US$25m building renovation and expansion project in Anniston, Alabama.

The 36 acre, five building campus will feature a new Vehicle Innovation Centre, which is understood to be North America’s first innovation laboratory that is dedicated to the advancement of bus and coach technology. The VIC will be led in partnership with Motor Coach Industries, another US subsidiary of the company.

“Repairing infrastructure through advanced technology is paramount to America’s competitiveness, safety and prosperity. Through New Flyer’s investment in advanced engineering and manufacturing, we have the potential to dramatically transform the future of public transportation in the US,” commented Wayne Joseph, President of New Flyer of America. “We are proud to power sustainable new technologies, collaborations for smart cities and opportunities to connect people to places.”


September 2017

Unilode expands its global ULD repair network 

Unilode Aviation Solutions has further expanded its global repair network by opening a new FAA Part 145 certified repair centre at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky airport. This new facility will primarily support and expand Unilode’s partnership with DHL, and focus on ULD repairs and assembly, in addition to supporting Unilode’s existing ULD management and repair customers.

Moreover, Unilode’s South American network will be further strengthened by the opening of a repair centre in São Paulo, within the next couple of months. This new facility, along with Unilode’s recently opened FAA Part 145 certified service centre in Santiago, will primarily serve LATAM, which is Unilode’s ULD management customer.

Finally, Unilode has said that it also plans to open a repair centre in Jeddah before the end of this year. This facility will mainly focus on supporting Saudia Airlines (Unilode’s ULD management customer) with its ULD management and repair needs.

September 2017

IT comes to airport’s aid

Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International airport, in combination with the local Transportation Security Administration, is using live and empirical data to identify irregularities at the security checkpoint. Thanks to BlipTrack technology, the airport is now experiencing better resource utilisation and smoother passenger processing.

In 2016, the airport achieved its best ranking in the history of the US Department of Transportation airfare report. It also experienced its highest passenger traffic volumes since 2005, with almost 7m passengers passing through this international transport hub.

CincinnatiTo keep the passenger experience positive, even as carrier and traveller numbers continue to rise, the airport implemented BlipTrack queue and flow technology at TSA checkpoints during 2014. The airport was the first in the US to utilise this solution, which allows it to measure, understand and improve the traveller experience, and to better plan and allocate resources in cooperation with the TSA.

After one year of use, the airport was in a position to announce that, due to the data gathered via BlipTrack, it had successfully reduced TSA security line waiting times by one third. In a 2015 report produced by Purdue University, standard waiting times had dropped by nearly over four minutes from 13.2 minutes to 8.9 minutes, compared to 2011.

Since then, the airport has gradually expanded the solution and added new features to help streamline operations further and continue improving the passenger experience. Passenger-facing waiting time monitors and interfaces provide immediate waiting time status, thereby easing the travel anxiety associated with queue lines and setting realistic expectations. Additionally, the airport has gone so far as to establish service level agreement-like standards for self-accountability, ensuring average waiting times below 15 minutes are consistently delivered. For the second quarter ending June 2017, the average waiting time for expedited screening registered at 11 minutes 28 seconds. This is deemed significant, given the station’s surge in peak-day checkpoint throughput from 10,000 to over 15,000 during the same period.

September 2017

LSG Group celebrates contract renewal

The LSG Group has renewed and extended its contract with Alaska Airlines for a further three years. This new agreement will cover 40 airports in both the US and Mexico, which equates to an average of 3,100 flights per week.

Alaska Airlines is a long established customer of the LSG Group, a catering business that has grown markedly over recent years. Today, the LSG Group, whose catering activities are marketed under the LSG Sky Chefs brand name, also manages product design, equipment warehousing and distribution. 

September 2017

SkyMark appoints new VP SalesWeb upload rlewis-02

SkyMark Refuelers has announced the appointment of Richard Lewis as its new Vice President of International Sales. Lewis has been working in the Middle East, Asia-Pacific and African regions over the last ten years.


September 2017

Menzies business booming in the US

Air Canada has just awarded Menzies Aviation two new contracts and a total of 18 renewals for into-plane fuelling services in North America.

The contract renewals were secured for a period of five years, beginning in May 2018, while the new contracts were awarded by Ronald Reagan Washington National and Raleigh–Durham International airports. Combined, this represents more than 24,000 flights that will be fuelled on an annual basis.

August 2017

Brazil ignoring the aviation sector’s woes

The news from Latin America hasn’t been good for some time now but there are occasional rays of sunshine. Take Brazil: for the fifth consecutive month, demand in the country for air transport grew. July figures indicated a growth of 3.83%.

The statistics have just been released by the Brazilian Association of Airlines, which compared the month to the same period in 2016. Brazil also increased its load factors by 0.62% to achieve 83.97%. The number of passengers carried, meanwhile, grew by a useful 4.43% to reach 8.6m.

As for carrier market share, Gol takes first place with some 37.58%, followed by Latam with a 32.24% slice. Blue took 17.38% whilst Avianca Brazil weighed in with 12.8%. This pattern was repeated in the full year, where Gol continues to lead with 36.33%, followed by Latam (32.46%) and Blue (18.37%).

Similarly, international air traffic to and from Brazil grew in July by a healthy 18.82%.


August 2017

TNA brings new towbarless tug to the market

The latest in the TowFLEXX 5-Series, TNA is calling the new tug is the industry’s “most advanced and versatile remote controlled electrical towbarless aircraft tug in its class.” This newest tug combines the best in manoeuvrability, adaptability, practicality and tow capacity – can tow a wide variety of aircraft sizes.

The new heavy-duty configuration of the established 5-Series tug has a towing power of TowFLEXX-5S-Press-2_popupup to 75 tonnes (165,000 pounds) maximum take-off weight. Its strong prime movers have a tractive motor power up to 80 tonnes (176,000 pounds). This model is especially designed to cope with significant stress and can handle aircraft on steep inclines or other unusual harsh conditions, such as offshore helicopter platforms.

“Customers have been asking for an affordable and compact tug system, especially in the heavy-duty weight range of 100,000 to 150,000 pounds MTOW, and we’ve responded by introducing a smart and powerful electrical aircraft tow vehicle, making it much easier to overcome slopes and inclines and operating under tough environmental conditions,” said Michael Turwitt, Managing Partner of TNA Aviation Technologies. “The TowFLEXX HD features a special transmission and gear drive combined with many features that deliver unique functionality normally not even found in bigger and more expensive conventional tow tugs,” he added.

The launch date coincides with the arrival of the improved standard 5-Series configuration with many 2018 model year updates.

August 2017

Canada’s Cargojet sees revenues rise

Canadian overnight air cargo carrier, Cargojet, has announced a revenue increase of 11.2% in the first half of 2017, compared to the previous year, to $88.2m.

Adjusted EBITDA earnings were up 9.3% over the previous year, at $24.6m.Cargojet_B767-200

The operator said revenues came from increased volumes from existing overnight customers, contractual annual price increases and fuel surcharges. This was partially offset by a decrease in charter revenues.

President and CEO, Ajay Virmani, said the increase was a product of Cargojet’s strategy to improve aircraft utilisation and to maximise margins, adding: “We continue to prudently manage our operating costs and look for further route network optimisation opportunities.”

Cargojet handles around 1.3 million pounds of cargo every business night across North America using a fleet of 18 all-cargo aircraft.

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