NLR presents Endless Runway

NLR Endless Runway Airport Concept

This is what an endless runway airport looks like. (Image: NLR)

The Dutch aviation and space research institute NLR has presented a completely new airport concept: ‘The Endless Runway.

This radical concept is based on the construction of a circular runway with a diameter of approximately 3.5 km around an airport terminal. Such an airport would need only a third of the space of a conventional airport. Another advantage is that aircraft can always take off and land in any direction, depending on wind conditions, since there is always a point without crosswind on the circular runway. So, this kind of airport should be safer than conventional airports.

Landing aircraft can be routed away from residential areas because they are not dependent on a standard approach path. Finally, the ‘Endless Runway’ concept will enable multiple aircraft to take off and land simultaneously, resulting in increased airport capacity.

On the video you can see how it works:

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IAG launches low-cost Level

Airbus A330-200 Level

Impression of an A330-200 in the Level colour scheme. (Image: IAG)

International Airlines Group (IAG) has launched a new low-cost longhaul airline named ‘Level’. The new carrier will take off in June 2017, ticket sales have begun.

The airline will begin operating from Barcelona (Spain) and connect this city with Los Angeles, San Francisco (Oakland), Buenos Aires and Punta Cana. The intention is to launch flights from other European cities later.

Level will operate two new Airbus A330 aircraft painted in its own livery and fitted with 293 economy and 21 premium economy seats. The aircraft will initially be operated by Iberia flight and cabin crew.

The lowest fares are from €99/US$149 one way. Checked luggage (in addition to a free cabin bag), meals, seat selection and the latest movie releases will be complimentary for customers flying in premium economy. Passengers in ‘ordinary’ economy have to pay for this.

Level will become IAG’s fifth main airline brand alongside Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia and Vueling. Barcelona is Vueling’s home base and passengers can connect from European Vueling flights onto Level’s longhaul flights.

Flights to Los Angeles commence on June 1, twice weekly. Flights to San Francisco (Oakland) begin on June 2, thrice weekly. Flights to Punta Cana (Dominican Republic) start on June 10, twice a week. Flights to Buenos Aires begin on June 17, thrice weekly.

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Iran Air receives Airbus A330

Airbus A330-200 Iran Air

Iran Air’s first Airbus A330-200. (Photo: Airbus)

Iran Air has taken delivery of its first new Airbus A330-200.

The delivery is part of Iran Air’s major fleet renewal plan, and is the first widebody aircraft from the firm order for 100 Airbus aircraft in December 2016, comprising 46 single aisle and 54 widebody jets.

Iran Air’s A330-200 features a two class cabin layout, seating 32 passengers in business and 206 in economy.

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Azul will launch E195-E2 ops

Embraer E195-E2 Azul Brazilian Airlines

Impression of the Embraer E195-E2 in Azul livery. (Image: Embraer)

Azul Brazilian Airlines will become the launch operator of the Embraer E195-E2.

The airline has 30 E2s on firm order plus 20 purchase rights. "Azul played a key role in the E195-E2 development, actively participating in the design specification of the aircraft," says John Slattery, President & CEO, Embraer Commercial Aviation.

Currently, the Brazilian airline is the biggest E-jet operator in the world. It has a total of 73 E-Jets in service: 10 E190s plus 63 E195s. The new E195-E2s will be configured by Azul in a single-class layout with 130 seats. Entry into service of the first E2 is scheduled for the first half of 2019.

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FAA: ‘737 MAX 8 is airworthy’

Boeing, 737 MAX 8

The Boeing 737 MAX 8 is ready to take off in airline service. (Photo Boeing)

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has certified the Boeing 737 MAX 8 for commercial service. Boeing expects to deliver the first aircraft in the coming months to Norwegian.

The test programme began just over one year ago with the first of four airplanes.

The 737 MAX 8 is the first of the 737 MAX family. Boeing claims that it uses 14 percent less fuel than today’s most fuel-efficient single-aisle airplanes.

The 737 MAX incorporates CFM International LEAP-1B engines, advanced winglets and other improvements

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Boeing rolls out first 737 MAX 9

Boeing 737 MAX 9 rollout

Boeing has rolled out the first 737 MAX 9. (Photo: Boeing)

Boeing has rolled out the first 737 MAX 9, the second member of 737 MAX family.

The MAX 9 has a maximum capacity of 220 passengers and a range of 3,515 nm (6,510 km). It is the successor of the 737-900 and the primary difference is the installation of two more fuel efficient CFM International LEAP-1B turbofan engines.

Boeing expects the airplane will make its maiden flight in the coming weeks. The new 737 version is scheduled to enter service in 2018. The 737 MAX is the fastest-selling airplane in Boeing history, accumulating more than 3,600 orders to date from 83 customers worldwide.

According to Boeing, the first new 737 version, the 737 MAX 8, is on track for delivery to customers in the second quarter of 2017. The MAX 8 and 9 will be followed in 2019 by the smaller MAX 7 and higher capacity MAX 200, while Boeing is also considering an even longer version, the 737 MAX 10 to compete better with the Airbus A321.

Boeing 737 MAX 10

Impression of the proposed Boeing 737 MAX 10. (Image: Boeing)

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Embraer rolls out first E195-E2

Embraer E195-E2 rollout

The first Embraer E195-E2 after the rollout. (Photo: Embraer)

Embraer has rolled out the first aircraft of the second generation E195, the E195-E2, the largest member of the new E-jet family.

The aircraft will make its maiden flight during the coming months and the jet is expected to enter into service in the first half of 2019.

The E195-E2 has a stretched fuselage, allowing three additional seat rows compared with the current generation E195. It can be configured with 120 seats in a two class layout or up to 146 in an all economy configuration. The aircraft also offers 450 nm (833 km) of extra range, which allows trips of up to 2,450 nm (4,537 km).

The aircraft has a new wing, with the highest aspect ratio among single-aisle jets, in order to improve fuel efficiency. Embraer claims that the new, fourth generation fly-by-wire control system allows a 20 per cent reduction of the empennage area, reducing drag and weight. It is to use 24 per cent less fuel per seat and has 20 per cent lower maintenance costs compared with the current E195. The E195-E2 is fitted with two Pratt & Whitney PW1900 (geared) turbofan engines.

Embraer has so far received firm orders for 275 E2 aircraft since the programme was launched, plus 415 other commitments like options and purchase rights.

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Air Caraïbes receives A350

Airbus A350-900 Air Caraibes

The first Airbus A350 in the colours of Air Caraïbes. (Photo: Airbus)

French Caribbean airline Air Caraïbes has taken delivery of its first Airbus A350-900. The aircraft is leased from AerCap.

The new jetliner will begin commercial services on 2 March flying from Paris Orly to Pointe-à-Pitre and Fort-de-France on 2 March.

This A350-900 can accommodate 389 passengers in a three-class configuration, (18 business, 45 Premium Economy and 326 economy seats). Air Caraïbes plans to operate its A350 XWB alongside the A330s it already has in service.

To date, Airbus has received orders for 821 A350 XWBs from 44 customers.

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Another special Belgian A320

Airbus A320 Brussels Airlines Amare special livery

Amare, the newest Airbus A320 in Brussels Airlines colours. (Photo: Brussels Airlines)

Brussels Airlines has painted another of its Airbus A320s, OO-SNF, in a special livery. Theme is ‘Amare’ created by Brussels Airlines and the music festival Tomorrowland.

Young people from Swaziland and Sweden to Fiji come together at this festival. The aircraft made its first flight as Amare today from Brussels to Vienna.

Amare is the fourth special livery plane that Brussels Airlines adds to its so called ‘Belgian Icons series’. In 2014 the company decided to dedicate an aircraft to Tintin, which instantly became one of the most photographed planes in the world. One year later an A320 was dedicated to surrealist painter René Magritte, and another one became ‘Trident’, the aircraft of the Red Devils, the Belgian national football team.

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