John Glenn Columbus Airport welcomes new STS Maintenance station

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Aircraft maintenance provider, STS Line Maintenance has opened a line maintenance station at Ohio’s John Glenn Columbus (CMH) Airport, bringing its total number of maintenance stations throughout the US, Bahamas and the UK to 37.

“As is the case with most new stations that we open, our clients reached out and requested our award-winning aircraft maintenance services in Columbus,” said Mark Smith, President of STS Aviation Group, which owns STS Line Maintenance. “After careful consideration and months of planning, the new station is now open and already repairing aircraft.”

Robby Bush, VP and General Manager of STS Line Maintenance added: “this is another exciting step for us at STS Line Maintenance. As our company continues to expand its global reach, we will continue to provide the aerospace industry with cost-effective aircraft maintenance solutions at every turn.”

The new facility will be open seven days a week and the on-the-ground team has the ability to store spare parts on property, which adds a significant increase to the overall cost-saving’s benefits STS is able to deliver to customers at CMH Airport.

Rolls-Royce marks a milestone with 100% SAF fuelled flight from Tucson

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Working alongside Boeing and World Energy, Rolls-Royce has marked a milestone in its lower carbon journey having carried out a successful test flight of its 747 Flying Testbed aircraft using 100% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) on a Trent 1000 engine.

The aircraft flew from Tucson Airport in Arizona on 19 October with a Trent 1000 engine running solely on 100% SAF. The remaining three RB211 engines ran on standard jet fuel and the flight lasted three hours and 45 minutes before landing back at the same airport having passed over New Mexico and Texas.

Aircraft are currently only certified to operate on a maximum of 50% SAF blended with conventional jet fuel and Rolls-Royce continues to support efforts to certificate non-blended SAF.

The need to increase SAF production was recently recognised by the US Biden administration with the launch of a SAF Grand Challenge to produce 3 billion gallons of the fuel a year by 2030. Th European Commission has also created a ReFuelEU Aviation proposal that would mandate the incorporation of SAF supplied at EU airports. This would increase to 63% by 2050.

“We believe in air travel as a force for cultural good, but we also recognise the need to take action to decarbonise our industry,” said Simon Burr, Rolls-Royce, Director Product Development and Technology – Civil Aerospace. “This flight is another example of our collaboration across the value chain to make sure all the aircraft technology solutions are in place to enable a smooth introduction of 100% SAF into our industry.”

The test flight was carried out in close collaboration with Boeing, which provided technical support and oversight on aircraft modifications and assurance the aircraft systems would operate as expected with 100% SAF. The low-carbon fuel for the flight was provided by World Energy, the world’s first and America’s only commercial-scale SAF production company.

“We’re grateful for the trailblazing work our partners are doing,” said Gene Gebolys, CEO, World Energy. “Rolls-Royce’s work to prove the viability of powering the jet engines they make with the 100% renewable SAF we make lays the groundwork for fossil fuel-free flight. This work is incredibly important, and we applaud and appreciate Rolls-Royce for working with us to do it.”

Memphis Airport partners with Amadeus to support transformation to ‘origin and destination’ hub

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As part of its transformation over the past few years from a regional hub to an ‘origin and destination’ airport, Memphis International Airport in Tennessee has diversified its number of carriers rather than serving as a transfer hub for one primary airline. The airport is now working to actively recruit additional airlines, including ultra-low-cost-carriers that fly point-to-point routes. To complement its concourse redevelopment, the airport has also teamed up with Amadeus to acquire a new generation of IT systems to support this transformation.

“Our modernisation project will reinvent the travel experience for the Memphis passenger, and welcome millions of travellers to our great city. This technology will be a key part of our modernisation and our operations moving forward,” commented Scott A. Brockman, President and CEO, Memphis International Airport.

With a more diverse range of airlines using the airport, Memphis has sought to enhance its operational capabilities with technological upgrades that include several Amadeus Airport Management Solutions.

The introduction of a new Airport Operational Database (AODB) provides information that includes airline flight schedules a year in advance, so all systems and partners at the airport have a consistent, long-range operational view. Meanwhile the Amadeus Resource Management System (RMS) will help with managing the transition to shared gates, ticket counters, and baggage drop-off points, based on a real-time view of demand from different airlines. The airport will also use the Amadeus PROPworks contracting and billing management system.

Elena Avila, EVP Airport IT and Airline Operations, Amadeus noted that: “Airports across the United States are adapting to the operational shifts ongoing in aviation. Our technology is specifically designed to help manage the complexity of terminals and resources that are shared by multiple carriers, which will prove critically valuable in this ongoing transformation. In particular, we’re excited to support this important transformation at Memphis.”

Frequentis Orthogon enhances airport operations planning with Demand Capacity Balancer

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Having acquired Orthogon in 2021, Frequentis is now supporting its Airport Operations Plan with its Demand Capacity Balancer (DCB) solution.

The solution extends the airport operations planning horizon by enabling information sharing and integration with the Network Operations Plan (NOP), to accurately forecast demand, capacity and performance metrics. In doing so, it bridges the gap between strategic, pre-tactical and tactical planning by replacing the conventional scheduled-based planning with a rolling Airport Operations Plan (AOP).

By combining real-time data and analytics results and advanced simulation capabilities to enable scenario-based planning DCB enables aids effective airport collaborative decision making (A-CDM). It also supports airport operational stakeholders when responding to both real-time and pre-planning scenarios to improve operational decision-making and airport performance.

One of the multiple benefits of DCB is that it predicts individual flight arrival times using global data coverage that encompasses the influence of operational and weather conditions. It allows for a more effective resource allocation, associated with time and cost savings for managing the operational resources and hence significantly reducing overall OPEX. Its integrated TTA capability enables airport operators to become a proactive partner of the network to improve punctuality, reduce operating costs, including for airlines and to improve passenger satisfaction.
“We are pleased to be providing a key solution that supports the implementation of both the Initial and the Extended AOP in compliance with the CP1 regulation in Europe,” said Frank Köhne, Managing Director Frequentis Orthogon.

He added that results from the DCE deployment at London Heathrow, for which Frequentis Orthogon partnered with NATS, showed “a considerable reduction of delays by complementing conventional AFTM regulations. As we look towards aviation recovery, this is a fundamental way that airports can increase efficiency, cost effectiveness and sustainability through reduced CO2 emissions.”

UK airports halve emissions in line with commitment to sustainable growth

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To coincide with its annual conference held on Tuesday 19 October, the Airport Operators Association (AOA) has launched its Decarbonisation Report, which reveals that greenhouse gas emissions have fallen by up to 50.6% since 2010, while passenger numbers increased 41.7% over the same period (2010-2019).

The 18 airports that represented more than 95% of passengers emitted 514,331 tonnes of CO2e in 2010 from sources they controlled (known as scope 1 & 2 emissions), while welcoming 201.7m passengers through their doors.

In 2019, those same airports accounted for 249,824 tonnes of CO2e, 50.6% less than in 2010, while seeing 285.8m passengers travelling, an increase of 41.7%. This is based on the energy used at those airports (known as location-based emissions). If the renewable energy purchased by those airports i included (known as market-based emissions), then overall emissions fell by around 80%.

“Thanks to significant efforts, airports have achieved a major reduction in the greenhouse gas emissions they control since 2010 and this is testament to their commitment to sustainable aviation growth,” said Karen Dee, AOA’s Chief Executive.

She added: “Despite this record achievement, more needs to be done to reach net zero. Our Decarbonisation Report shows that airports that take responsibility seriously and are setting out pathways to further emission reductions.

“Emissions from airports is, of course, not the whole picture. Aircraft emissions account for the majority of the aviation sector’s greenhouse gases. here, too, airports are stepping up the plate.”

AOA’s Decarbonisation Roadmap outlines the measures airports are taking to work with airlines and other stakeholders including ground handlers to reduce emissions as well as to reduce their own energy use and invest in sustainable energy and heat generation, including solar farms on airport land.

Other actions airports are taking include: investing in zero-emission vehicles; improving the energy efficiency of equipment and buildings; scoping options to invest in using or generating renewable heat at airports; upgrading airspace to make the most of the capabilities of modern aircraft and reduce noise impacts and emissions; encouraging staff and passengers to use sustainable transport to the airport, including working with local, devolved and UK governments to invest in sustainable surface access; and working with airlines, universities and aerospace manufacturers to develop zero-emission aircraft and the necessary infrastructure for electric or hydrogen aircraft propulsion.

“As we come out of the pandemic, now is the time to consider how we build back better to achieve that net-zero future. At the AOA Annual Conference today, airport CEOs, Chairman of the Commitee on Climate Change Lord Deben, Ministers, Parliamentarians and investors will discuss what we need to do individually and together on this vital journey to a sustainable future,” concluded Dee.

New runway lighting and approach system at Are Ostersund Airport

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Åre Östersund Airport, which is operated by Swedavia, has inaugurated its new runway lighting and approach system which will provide enhanced access for the region’s passengers. The new infrastructure will enable aircraft to take off and land even in poor visibility conditions with fog at the airport, which was not previously possible.

The airport is one of three Swedish hubs with the new technology. The other two airports that have deployed the new runway lighting and approach system are Stockholm Arlanda and Göteborg Landvetter Airport. The new infrastructure and CAT III system also makes Åre Östersund Swedavia’s first regional airport in this category enabling aircraft to operate even in weather conditions with poor visibility.

“Finally, after several years of meticulous preparations, it is naturally very gratifying that we now have the new runway infrastructure in place at Åre Östersund,” said Peter Fahlen, Airport Director at Swedavia’s Åre Östersund Airport. “The new technology enables enhanced access to the region and increased assurance for everyone who travels here by air now that the airport can handle and land aircraft in weather conditions with greatly reduced visibility as well.”

With the new infrastructure, which improves access to the airport, the airport’s navigation and meteorological systems have been updated and the airport has been equipped with a new runway lighting system featuring nearly one thousand new light fixtures – a considerable improvement compared to the previous system.

Costing a total of 70 million Swedish kronor, Swedavia has financed the runway lighting and approach system in collaboration with the Jämtland-Härjedalen regional authority and the neighbouring municiaplities of Östersund, Åre and Krokom.

Farnborough Airport scoops FBO of the year title at ACA Awards

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Farnborough Airport in the UK was named FBO of the year in the Air Charter Association (ACA) Excellence Awards, 2021. The Annual awards highlight the best in the aviation sector and award companies for excellence within specific fields. Winners are selected through a combination of member voting and deliberations of the ACA’s industry adjudication panel.

“We are delighted to receive this prestigious accolade and we are hugely appreciative to all those who voted for us,” said Farnborough Airport’s Business Development Manager, Richard Wittels. “This award is testament to the hard work of the entire Farnborough Airport team, who are committed to delivering outstanding customer service and operational excellence.”

Recognised as the UK’s first airfield in aviation history and home to the country’s first powered flight in 1908, Farnborough Airport continues to be a leader in aviation. It hosts Farnborough Airshow every two years and in 2018 was the first business aviation airport to be awarded carbon neutral status by Airports Council International (ACI) Europe under the Airport Carbon Accreditation scheme. In July 2021 the airport introduced the use of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).

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Williston Basin Airport welcomes Overland Aviation’s new FBO facilities

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Overland Aviation has opened a new US Customs facility and luxury terminal at its FBO facility in Williston Basin International Airport in North Dakota.

Describing the opening of the FBO’s new facilities a milestone, Tanner Overland, President and Founder of Overland Aviation said: “It is the culmination of years of planning and development on our mission to delivery industry-leading tech stops to a global market. We are excited to welcome travellers from all over the world to Williston Basin International Airport.”

The 51,000 sq. ft. executive terminal and hangar complex successfully combines industrial architecture with natural wood elements. It offers an executive passenger terminal and pilot lounge, as well as a private terminal for oil-labourer  crew-change flights, management and rental office space. There is also a heated hangar to accommodate aircraft up to a Gulfstream G650, and a US general aviation facility to welcome international operations.

Ideally located directly under the Great Circle Route between Europe and the western part of the US, Overland Aviation is in a prime position for international stopovers. It also offers an experienced team and US customs co-located within the FBO. Customers also benefit from uncongested airspace and an environment that allows for turnarounds in 30 minutes or less. It is also a true fee-free tech stop: free of landing fees, handling fees, security fees and infrastructure fees. In addition, ramp and international garbage fees are always waived with a fuel purchase. Overland Aviation is an Avfuel-branded FBO.

More building rights up for sale at Goteborg Landvetter Airport

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In line with its vision for Airport City Göteborg, Swedavia has sold the last building rights available in Logistics Park 1 at Göteborg Landvetter Airport in Sweden to Nordiska Galleriet Properties AB – Swedens’ largest retailer of furniture, lighting and interior furnishings in the premium segment.

To meet the strong demand for logistics properties at the airport, work has now begun on Logistics Park 2, which will be twice the size of the original logistics park.

The sale of the building rights to Nordiska Galleriat Properties includes three land-owning companies with an underlying property value of around 17.4 million Swedish kronor. The transfer of ownership took place on 7 October.

“Naturally we are pleased that Nordiska Galleriat Properties and thus another operator has chosen to take part in the development of Airport City Göteborg,” remarked Stefan Stenburg, CEO of Swedavia Real Estate. “we are now seeing the rapid growth of a new hub for transport and logistics at the airport. The logistics properties now being planned will have easy access and good exposure next to the entrance to Göteborg Landvetter Airport.”

With Logistics Park 1 covering a total of 300,000 sq.m. some 95,000 sq.m. of new premises for warehouses and logistics have already been completed. A further approximately 20,000 sq.m. of office, business and warehousing premises will be created as a result of the recent sales over the next two years.

Stenberg added that there continues to be strong interest in establishing logistics operations adjacent to the optimal transport hub that the airport constitutes. “To meet this demand, Swedavia is now beginning work on Airport City Göteborg’s second logistics area, which will have twice as much space as Logistics Park 1,” he pointed out.

Located on the west side of the airport and covering around 700,000 sq.m. work on the zoning plan for the new logistics area will start in 2022. The goal is for the first building in the area to be completed in 2025.

“Our furniture operations in Molndal have seen very strong growth recently, and it feels good that we are now expanding our peroperty holdigns and gaining access to more storage capacity, which will facilitate continued growth for Nordiska Galleriet in the Gothenburg region,” said Per Sköld, CEO of Nordiska Galleriet Properties.

Munich Airport collaborates with Urban-Air Port on eVTOL infrastructure design

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An exciting new collaboration between Munich Airport International (MAI) and Urban-Air Port Ltd (UAP) will see the two organisations join forces and share their expertise to develop eVTOL ground infrastructure and airport operations that will facilitate the vertical take-off and landing of electric air taxis, which are expected to be operational by the middle of the decade.

The pairing of the two organisations will also provide a roadmap for efficient and sustainable flight operations.

UAP is currently deploying its ‘Air One’ programme, a fully operational and integrated airport for drones and eVTOL that interlinks air mobility with ground transportation in a multimodal hub. Located in a downstream setting in Coventry, UK, the first Air One is due to open in spring 2022, with the goal of demonstrating an ultra-compact, rapidly deployable, multi-functional operations hub for manned and unmanned vehicles providing aircraft command and control, charging and refuelling, cargo and passenger loading and other associated services.

The aviation industry is constantly evolving. While Urban Air Mobility was a vague vision just a few years ago, this trend is within reach today. We as Munich Airport International see great potential in this new mode of transportation and have developed an advanced air mobility programme to actively shape the future. Partnering with Urban-Air Port allows us to join forces in designing, implementing and operating scalable and sustainable urban-air ports around the world.

Dr. Ralf Gaffal, MAI’s Managing Director.

In addition to the Air One programme, both parties will also partner on longer term projects and opportunities with an initial focus on use cases and markets which are expected to emerge in the next couple of years.

Commenting on how Urban-Air Port is working to develop the full ecosystem to enable air mobility to take flight by building strategic partnerships with mobility and industry partners across the world, Ricky Sandhu, Founder & Executive Chairman at Urban-Air Port said: “This collaboration with Munich Airport International allows us to jointly develop our expertise in airport development and operations. Moreover, we can lay the foundations for a globally integrated urban air transport network. Together, we strive to play a major role in shaping the future of urban mobility and to equip and adapt the aviation industry to meet the needs of the coming decades.”