DOT sees increased arrivals with additional int’l flights via Clark Airport
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Foresight’s Technology to Replace Use of LiDAR by a Leading Israeli Defense Integrator for the Israeli Defense Forces
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Digital cockpit of the future / HMI in aviation and shipping
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Jankel and Williams Advanced Engineering collaborate to bring EV technologies and capabilities to the US Defence market
Delivery of 2nd European Service Module: from Europe to the Moon
Bombardier to Hold Virtual Event Celebrating the Best of Aerospace Innovation on Tuesday, September 14, 2021
Foresight Enters Autonomous Drone Market with POC Project
Foresight Autonomous Holdings Ltd. (Nasdaq and TASE: FRSX), an innovator in automotive vision systems, announced today that Wonder Robotics Ltd., a start-up company engaged in the design and development of drone autonomy systems, has started a proof of concept (POC) project and the evaluation of Foresight’s QuadSight® vision system. Wonder Robotics will test Foresight’s thermal stereoscopic detection abilities for use in vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) drones to improve their autonomous flight, navigation and landing capabilities. In addition, Wonder Robotics will use Foresight’s automatic calibration solution to ensure that the stereo cameras remain calibrated despite the drone’s vibrations. Following successful completion of the POC project, the parties will consider integrating Foresight's technology into Wonder Robotics products. Wonder Robotics products use a 3D sensor and proprietary algorithms to provide drones with 360-degree situational awareness, including during their descent and landing, verifying that the landing site is clear of obstacles, including low-profile obstacles, such as cables, and even dynamic moving obstacles, like people or animals. Foresight’s advanced thermal stereoscopic technology generates a high-resolution depth map which provides accurate information on the drone’s surroundings, including the location and distance of any object in the field of view. In addition, Foresight’s unique automatic calibration solution has proven to be the key for incorporating long-range stereo cameras on drones, ensuring that the cameras remain calibrated while withstanding the drone’s vibrations. This eliminates the need for heavy and rigid mechanical interfaces and meets the desired low weight requirements for VTOL drones. “This POC project with Wonder Robotics opens a new market for Foresight. Our advanced technologies are designed to fit various industries that are using stereo camera systems and can be readily applied to different markets, such as autonomous drones,” said Haim Siboni, CEO of Foresight. “We have been looking closely at the automotive industry and the accelerated advancements in sensor technology supported by the increased demand for autonomous capabilities,” stated Idan Shimon, Co-Founder & CEO of Wonder Robotics. “The commercial drones revolution is moving just as fast now, and we believe that Foresight’s solution is perfectly suited for the rigorous demands of the drone market thanks to its performance on one hand and its minimal size and weight on the other hand, which are more significant to drones than any other mobility sector.” According to April 2021 research by Research and Markets, vertical take-off and landing unmanned aerial vehicle (VTOL UAV) market size was estimated at $4.4 billion in the year 2020 and is projected to reach $15.6 billion by 2027, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.6% over the analyzed period 2020-2027. The VTOL UAV market in the United States is estimated at $1.3 billion in the year 2020 and the Chinese VTOL UAV market is forecast to reach a projected market size of $2.7 billion by the year 2027.
National hypersonic ground test facility to be built in Purdue Aerospace District
The first-of-its-kind Hypersonic Ground Test Center to be constructed in the Purdue Aerospace District will allow industry partners to test their hypersonic technologies. (Credit: Second Bay Studios) A first-of-its-kind in the U.S. facility to test hypersonic technologies will be constructed in the Purdue Aerospace District adjacent to the Purdue University campus, already a hotbed for hypersonics research and aerospace technology developments. The Hypersonic Ground Test Center, or HGTC, announced Monday (Aug. 9) during a two-day Hypersonics Summit hosted by Purdue and the National Defense Industrial Association, will be a central shared utility that supports multiple test cells and laboratories. The announcement of the HGTC comes on the heels of two major recent announcements for plans in the Purdue Aerospace District. On July 27, the university and research foundation announced plans for the construction of the 65,000-squre-foot Hypersonic Applied Research Facility. That facility will house the only Mach 8 quiet wind tunnel in the world as well as a hypersonic pulse (HYPULSE) shock tunnel. On Aug. 2, it was announced that Rolls-Royce will significantly expand its already large footprint at Purdue. Its new test facilities will be used to develop high-altitude and hybrid-electric engines to power the next generation of U.S. military aircraft. “At Purdue, we’re committed to research at the very frontiers of science, especially when it can contribute to the national security of Americans,” Purdue President Mitch Daniels said. “Becoming home to the nation’s premier hypersonics facilities can make such a contribution, while providing enormous new opportunities for our researchers, aspiring entrepreneurs, and job seeking graduates.” Mark J. Lewis, executive director of the Emerging Technology Institute, a nonpartisan think tank focused on technology critical to the future of national defense, and the chief scientific advisor to NineTwelve, said, “We need to do more than match our peer competitors, we need to leapfrog them quickly. This facility will help us make that happen.” The HGTC will be administered by a new nonprofit consortium of national defense industry partners that will manage capital and operational costs. Rolls-Royce North America is the first aerospace industry member of the HGTC consortium. Other national industry partners and potential interested government entities are being recruited. The HGTC facility will house two separate testing streams; partners can conduct tests in the 3.5-5.0 Mach range or the 4.5-7.5 Mach range. Multiple companies can undertake work simultaneously on site, while being ensured full protection of intellectual property and sensitive work. These facilities will be available for long-term lease to allow guaranteed, timely access for contractors to conduct tests at their preferred schedule and duration. Tom Bell, chairman and CEO, Rolls-Royce North America, said, “Rolls-Royce is proud to be the founding member of this significant new addition to aerospace research. We credit leadership from the state of Indiana, Purdue University and Purdue Research Foundation for their important vision and investment leading to the creation of the Hypersonics Ground Test Center. Rolls-Royce has a unique history in high-speed propulsion, dating to the Concorde aircraft and 30 years of experience on hypersonics research with our Department of Defense customers through our LibertyWorks advanced technology unit in Indianapolis. We are keenly interested in the area of hypersonic propulsion and currently exploring development of advanced supersonic and high-Mach propulsion systems with our customers.” Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb said the HGTC is another example of how the state of Indiana and industry succeed together. "Creating this first-in-the-nation center is possible because we have industry partners that aren't just on the cutting edge but are reinventing where the edge is,” Holcomb said. “Couple that with the many thriving communities in Tippecanoe County, and a gushing pipeline of top talent at Purdue including researchers, students and graduates prepared to make the next giant leaps in both aerospace and hypersonic innovation. It's because of days like today that our economy remains strong and Indiana reigns as one of the best places in the world to do business." U.S. Sen. Todd Young of Indiana, said, “The transformational technologies being developed and tested at Purdue will help America win the 21st century. Not only will these ideas create the jobs of tomorrow, they will ensure that the American military remains the strongest and most advanced fighting force in the world.” Purdue University and Purdue Research Foundation will fund the construction of the HGTC. PRF president and CEO Brian Edelman said, "Building the Hypersonic Ground Test Center would not be possible without a recent multimillion-dollar investment to further expand facilities in the Purdue Aerospace District. That investment from Rolls-Royce, the university and PRF, along with support from the state, West Lafayette, Lafayette and Tippecanoe County, laid the foundation for creating the HGTC." The HGTC draft design, capabilities and requirements were developed by Zionsville, Indiana-based NineTwelve, in coordination with PRF. Chad Pittman, president of NineTwelve, said he and the NineTwelve team are excited to be a valuable resources for the facility and the partnerships it has and will continue to attract in the vital space of the nation’s defense needs.”
Fully-Immersive EURAMEC Do-228 Flight Sim Will Be Certified to EASA Standards for General Atomics
General Atomics AeroTec Systems GmbH (GA-ATS), a subsidiary of General Atomics Europe GmbH, has recently placed an order with EURAMEC N.V. of Hamme, Belgium for a fully-immersive flight simulator for the Dornier 228NG aircraft family. This simulator allows for a complete "immersion" in the virtual situation due to the greatest possible closeness to reality. The simulator will be built by EURAMEC and delivered to ATS’s flight training facility in Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany. The Do-228 flight simulator will be certified as a flight training device to EASA FNPT-II/MCC and FTD Level standards. "This simulator will take our GA-ATS flight training capabilities for the Do-228NG family to a new level," said GA-ATS Managing Director Erik Bollen. “Acquiring this simulator is another example of GA’s ever-deepening ties with European aerospace industry and demonstrates our ongoing commitment to working with Belgian companies to meet our supply chain needs.” “EURAMEC is pleased to support General Atomics Europe on the development of type-specific flight training devices.” said Bert Buyle, CEO EURAMEC. “We look forward to the EASA certifiable Do-228 NG flight simulator playing a role in delivering support to the safety, training and readiness of flight crews around the world.” GA-Europe had completed the acquisition of RUAG Aerospace Services GmbH on March 1, 2021. GA-ATS is an innovative aviation company that is now the manufacturer and Type Certificate Holder of the Do-228. It also provides maintenance and repair services of business aircraft and military helicopters. The Do-228 is a twin-engine, multirole light transport aircraft of which the Dornier Do-228NG is the current production version with a state-of-the-art glass cockpit and increased performance.
Ultra-lightweight Solar Plane : The Winner of JEC Innovation Award
On June 2, our Solar plane has been awarded as the winner of JEC Connect 2021 Innovation Award in Aerospace Category. Meanwhile, the JEC Group, a global and innovative media event company, is responsible for the selection of the world’s most innovative composite solutions. This project has been developed in collaboration with Tokai University which has great records of The World Solar Challenge, in cooperation with the Sky Perfect JSAT and Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization. Thus, this is the result of the industry-academia and government collaboration. The success of this project was made possible because of its design and its manufacturing of the full-composite aircraft, resulting in an ultra-lightweight, highly stiff structure that includes a16-meter wingspan. In addition, due to the mechanical properties of the advanced composite materials, the solar plane framework is resistant to fatigue and environmental conditions, ensuring optimal performance at high altitudes for prolonged periods. The objective of this project, which is still in development, is to provide energy-efficient relay stations for broad and wide telecommunication networks. On the other hand, we have announced the result of another project which has something to do with the large-scale decorative lighting along with CFRP structures assembled at the Singapore Raffles Hotel. It has also been selected as a finalist in design category in the same event. Finally, we will continue to work on our creativity and innovation in this technology and contribute to the future society. Likewise, we will seek further possibilities of composite technology. Reference: JEC Innovation Award ：www.jeccomposites.com
To give astronauts better food, engineers test a fridge prototype in microgravity
Astronauts have been going to space since 1961, but they still don’t have a refrigerator to use for keeping food cold on long missions to the moon or Mars. Through experiments conducted in microgravity, a team of engineers from Purdue University, Air Squared Inc., and Whirlpool Corporation has shown that a prototype they developed could potentially overcome the challenges of getting a traditional fridge to work in space just as well as it does on Earth. The canned and dried food that astronauts currently eat during missions has a shelf life of only about three years. The team’s project, funded by NASA’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, aims to give astronauts a supply of food that could last five to six years. Earlier this month, the team ran three experiments to test various aspects of the fridge design onboard a specially designed plane that flew in microgravity 30 times – for 20-second intervals – during each of four flights. The plane, Zero Gravity Corporation’s (ZERO-G) unique weightless research lab, is the only testing space of its kind in the United States. (See a video of the in-flight experiments on YouTube.) Data analyzed so far from the experiments on the flights, supported by NASA’s Flight Opportunities program, indicate two big successes of the team’s prototype. First, the prototype can operate just as well in microgravity as it does on the ground. Second, the team determined that the prototype was no more likely to flood in microgravity than in normal gravity. Liquid flooding could damage a fridge. The team is continuing to analyze the flight data collected. “We want to have a refrigeration cycle that is resistant to zero gravity and works to normal specifications,” said Eckhard Groll, a professor and head of Purdue’s School of Mechanical Engineering. “Our preliminary analysis clearly shows that our design allows gravity to have less impact on that cycle.” - A promising space fridge design The researchers are not the first to attempt building a fridge like those used on Earth for space missions, but they are among the few who have tried since astronauts walked on the moon in 1969. Even though fridge experiments have been in space before, they either didn’t work very well or eventually broke down. In practice, the fridge design would cool food through a vapor-compression cycle, similar to the process that a typical fridge uses on Earth, but without the need for oil. Having an oil-free vapor-compression cycle removes concerns about oil not flowing where it should in zero gravity. The team’s prototype is about the size of a microwave, ideal for potentially fitting into the International Space Station’s rack systems, EXPRESS Racks, that store research experiment payloads. Air Squared built the prototype and the oil-free compressor inside, which acts as the heart of the fridge. The team’s experiments aimed to test a common hypothesis that pushing refrigerant liquid through a vapor-compression cycle at a higher velocity would reduce the effects of gravity on the fridge’s performance. A detailed analysis of the data will show whether the constraint of these high-flow velocities and the large pressure drop they create can be removed, which could improve the fridge’s performance by saving energy. Two experiments built by Purdue researchers flew with the prototype experiment to evaluate how microgravity affected the design’s performance and susceptibility to liquid flooding. Whirlpool Corporation provided components for the fridge experiments as well as expertise on how to integrate these components, run the experiments and package the prototype in a way that would meet requirements for use in a long-term microgravity environment such as the International Space Station. - Testing a fridge for space while still on Earth Before the flights, Purdue researchers showed through one of the experiments that an oil-free vapor-compression cycle can operate in different orientations – even upside down. If a fridge can operate in any position, space crews wouldn’t have to worry about making sure the fridge is right side up at a landing. “The fact that the refrigeration cycles operated continuously in microgravity during the tests without any apparent problems indicates that our design is a very good start,” said Leon Brendel, a Purdue Ph.D. student in mechanical engineering. “Our first impression is that microgravity does not alter the cycle in ways that we were not aware of when we tested the effects of gravity on the fridge design on the ground by rotating and inclining it.” Groll, Brendel and Paige Beck, a Purdue junior majoring in mechanical engineering, conducted the experiments on the flights, along with members of the team from Air Squared and Whirlpool Corporation. For each flight, the plane performed 30 parabolas including Martian, lunar and micro gravities. “Floating around with the experiments is kind of like swimming, except that you don’t have resistance around you and you have to work to get the data at the same time. It was pretty fun, but I had to remember to not get cocky,” said Beck, who had the challenge of holding herself in place to collect data from an experiment at regular intervals and simultaneously record her actions into a microphone. Other challenging tasks involved quickly changing parameters in between parabolas or slightly turning a needle valve while floating around. “Sometimes I was too slow! But you learn as you go, and we successfully got the data we needed,” Brendel said. The team will be completing data analysis in the coming weeks.
LOT COMPLETES THE OFFER WITH SKYCELL’S HYBRID TECHNOLOGY
LOT Polish Airlines and SkyCell, a Swiss provider of hybrid containers, signed an agreement that extends LOT Cargo’s capabilities in the transport of medicines and pharmaceutical products (PIL). Thanks to advanced technology, SkyCell’s hybrid containers guarantee to maintain a constant transport temperature necessary for transporting demanding shipments even to distant regions of the world. The transport of pharmaceutical products requires the airlines to apply specialist solutions and meet demanding standards guaranteeing safety and the highest quality of provided services. Pharma and Life-Science is a critical sector of global cargo transport for LOT; therefore, the company is constantly increasing its competencies and improving its offer addressed to companies operating in this industry. In July 2020, LOT Cargo obtained the IATA CEIV Pharma certificate, which gave the Polish carrier a place in the prestigious group of 25 airlines with a documented and approved PIL QMS Quality Management System for pharmaceutical shipment management. The agreement signed with SkyCell is the next step distinguishing LOT Cargo’s offer on the market. Modern hybrid containers allow for securing temperatures between +15°C/+25°C, +2°C/+8°C, -30°C/-15°C and -60°C/-80°C, required among others for transporting vaccines. Hybrid containers: • Are an essential element of an integrated, cold supply chain, • Allow the maintenance of stable parameters of transporting medicines or pharmaceuticals even over long distances, • Thereby ensure the security of the whole process of delivery from the manufacturer to the recipient. “We are constantly developing LOT Cargo’s offer in transport for the pharmaceutical sector, which is estimated, only in Poland, to be worth at least PLN 100 million annually. A few months ago, we announced obtaining the prestigious CEIV Pharma certificate of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which gives us the position of leader in PIL shipments in the CEE region. The signing of an agreement with SkyCell, which allows us to use the hybrid containers for transport, is the next stage in the development of LOT Cargo’s offer and a step towards building a hub in Warsaw for pharmaceutical shipments distributed worldwide. The pharmaceutical industry is a market with unique requirements, for which safe, direct, and fast transport is crucial. Thanks to the appropriate technological facilities and a well-developed network of long-haul connections made with a modern fleet, we are able to meet these requirements immediately,” says Michał Grochowski, Director of Cargo and Mail Bureau at LOT Polish Airlines. LOT Cargo transports medicines and pharmaceutical goods in the Boeing 787 Dreamliner. The front cargo compartment is equipped with a temperature control system, which effectively combines two essential elements of transporting PIL shipments - temperature control by installation onboard the aircraft as well as through a container. Hybrid containers offered by SkyCell are one of the most modern solutions in this area, used in transport by leading pharma companies and the largest airlines in the world. The Swiss company has developed a technology that reduces risks with an audited performance of less than 0.1% temperature excursions during the transport of sensitive products. “Our partnership will leverage safe and tailor-made solutions with dedicated pharma lanes to increase the safety of pharmaceutical shipments and thus give our joint clients peace of mind over their supply chain.” comments Nicola Caristo, Airline Partner Manager at SkyCell. SkyCell’s hybrid containers, secured through an IoT monitoring service, track temperature conditions to ensure sensitive medicine is protected even under extreme conditions. With efficient insulation and cutting-edge cooling technology, the containers maintain steady temperatures for an average of 202 hours (8.4 days) and with the possibility to prolong the runtime through automatic self-recharging in a cooling chamber or reefer truck. The reusable container solution is easy to handle and self-charges with no need for plugs or dry ice, which reduces the potential for human error. SkyCell’s efficient and lightweight design reduces carbon dioxide emissions by up to 50%. All SkyCell containers are recyclable, which also allows maintaining the standards of sustainable development policy implemented by LOT.
LOT Extends the Free Rebooking Option Until the End of May 2021
During the pandemic, LOT meets the expectations of passengers once again by guaranteeing flexible booking management. The ability to make multiple itinerary changes, without additional fees, has now been extended and applies to tickets that are on sale until 31 May 2021. LOT was one of the first airlines to abolish rebooking fees already in September 2020. This allowed passengers to conveniently manage their travel plans during the pandemic. The current rules, which are in force until 31 March 2021, have now been extended by a further two months, giving passengers more time to decide on their travel plans, even during the summer season. In this difficult time, we have consistently implemented a policy of flexible booking management. For passengers, the ability to plan with peace of mind and to postpone the journey during a pandemic is an important factor in choosing a carrier. LOT, as one of the few carriers, will also apply these rules to tickets bought in the first two months of the summer season, i. e. until the end of May 2021 - says Krzysztof Moczulski, LOT's spokesman. The extended offer covers tickets for all LOT flights, including those from the #SummerwithLOT offer, purchased between 10 September 2020 and 31 May 2021. For tickets purchased during this period, the choice of a new flight date or route at no additional charge is available for the entire network of domestic, medium and long-haul routes, and for all LOT fares, including the cheapest SAVER fare. Any surcharges may only apply to the difference in the ticket price if the fare in which the original reservation was made is not available. The number of changes within the published schedule is not limited. This makes the offer perfectly suited to the challenges posed by the restrictions introduced by individual countries. If a new travel date is selected for the same route, passengers can make modifications on their own via lot.com in the "Manage your booking" tab. The change of destination can be made by contacting the LOT Contact Centre or agents directly or at the travel agency where the original ticket was purchased. The extension of free rebooking until 31 May 2021, as well as the extension of the validity of all vouchers to 24 months, are examples of the many passenger amenities recently introduced by LOT. This also applies to documents that were issued between March and October 2020. The voucher can be used for two years from the date of issue, and the new flight can be selected from the entire LOT network of connections, available for 12 consecutive months.
Rostec Equips Ansat with Wi-Fi and Satellite Internet
Kazan Helicopters of Russian Helicopter holding company (part of Rostec State Corporation) has received approval from the Federal Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsiya) to equip Ansat helicopter with the Mku30 satellite communication system. This option will provide helicopter passengers with high-speed Internet access during the flight. This Ku band satellite communication system, created by MOST Satellite Systems, provides up to 2 Mbit/s Internet access at the coverage area of the Yamal satellites. Mku30 allows to provide uninterrupted transmission of large amounts of data during flights, organize on-board video conferences and stream high quality video in real time. Data transfer to passengers' mobile devices is provided using a Wi-Fi access point. "Ansat is a versatile helicopter with a design that allows it to be adapted for a wide variety of operations: from an ambulance to a VIP configuration with advanced digital services. Ansat equipped with high-speed Internet access allows its passengers to stay in touch even during the flight. The service will be useful for both discerning passengers, as well as doctors, police, employees of the Ministry of Emergency Situations, who will be able to stay online to receive operational information," reported in the aviation cluster of Rostec State Corporation. The first Ansat helicopter, equipped with the new Mku30 satellite communication system, was presented at the 53rd International Paris Air Show in 2019. "The satellite communication system will be installed in the Ansat helicopter at the request of the customer. It will be most relevant for passenger and VIP modifications of the helicopter. The ability to use the Internet during flights is another step towards improving the comfort level of Ansat helicopters," said Managing Director of Kazan Helicopters, Alexey Belykh. Russian Helicopters and MOST Satellite Systems signed an agreement on cooperation in the field of joint promotion of helicopter technology equipped with satellite communication systems produced by the latter during the International Helicopter Industry Exhibition HeliRussia-2018. The agreement also provides for the development and implementation of after-sales service projects. An upgraded Ansat-M helicopter with an increased flight range (up to 800 km with an additional fuel tank) took to the skies on December 29, 2020. The updated version comes with static stability, state-of-the-art avionics and modernized heating and ventilation systems. In 2021, the model will also receive 3-channel autopilot. Ansat is a light multipurpose twin-engine helicopter. Its serial production is deployed at Kazan Helicopters. Its design enables to promptly transform it both into a cargo and a passenger configuration allowing transportation of up to 7 persons. In May 2015, a supplement to a type certificate for the modification of the helicopter with a medical module was obtained. Ansat is certified for use in the temperatures ranging between -45°С and +50°С, and in high mountains. In August 2018, the Federal Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsia) approved a major change in increasing the capacity of several assemblies and systems of Ansat. In 2019, Rosaviatsia certified an increase in the airworthiness of Ansat's fuselage to 16,000 flying hours. In February 2020, Russian aviation authorities certified the installation of an emergency floatation system to Ansat. Additional approval was issued for a major change to increase the airworthiness limitations for several major parts of the helicopter, making Ansat even more attractive to potential customers and increasing its competitiveness.
LOT With Approved AID Package
In the face of the biggest crisis in the history of the aviation industry, the European Commission and the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Poland have approved an aid package for LOT amounting to PLN 2.9 billion. It consists of a PLN 1.8 billion loan and a PLN 1.1 billion of capital injection. Such financing of LOT was possible due to the good condition of the company before the pandemic. LOT undertook to repay the major part of the aid amount together with subsidised interest rates, to the Polish Development Fund, which provided financing. Optimisation of the carrier's operations, reduction of leasing costs and the strategy implemented by LOT in recent years have resulted in a significant increase in profitability and the number of passengers carried. Therefore, even in such a serious crisis within the industry, the company can use repayable financing, which will be returned within six years from the profits generated. - The main cost of the airlines' operations are the lease payments for aircraft, which are paid to foreign financial institutions. Due to the crisis, we have negotiated a significant reduction so that we can apply for state aid and then work out its repayment as soon as possible - says Rafał Milczarski, CEO of LOT. The airline is a driver for the economy, tourism and a guarantee of the country's logistical security. Before the pandemic, we had been growing year on year in almost every category and generated record profits. We know how to get back on the path of intensive growth and we will do so - added Rafał Milczarski. As a result of the pandemic, since mid-March 2020, passenger air traffic throughout Europe has been suspended for almost 3 months, which means billions in losses for each air carrier. The situation was even worse because of the exceptionally bad summer season and the restrictions imposed by European countries at the beginning of autumn. According to IATA forecasts, the aviation industry worldwide net loss will be USD 118 billion in 2020 and USD 38 billion in 2021. Global air traffic has decreased by 66% and it will take several years to recover. That is why the leading European carriers have asked for public aid, otherwise air traffic would disappear for years. LOT is the next airline in Europe to receive government aid as a result of the pandemic. The airlines operating in our region have received multi-billion support from their governments, some of them even up to the equivalent of PLN 50 billion. Before the pandemic, LOT was a profitable company, generating profits every year. Since 2016, LOT has doubled its scale of operations, expanded its fleet from 45 to 80 aircraft and launched 80 new routes. In 2019, LOT carried a record 10 million passengers on board its aircraft. In 2020, LOT planned to launch long-haul flights to Washington and San Francisco, and to carry around 12 million passengers. The fast growth of LOT and the entire aviation sector is of great importance to the Polish economy and labour market. According to the TOR report, LOT contributes to the creation of about 63.7 thousand jobs and about 0.56% of the national GDP (about PLN 12 billion per year), while the entire aviation sector generates about 242 thousand jobs and 2.4% of GDP in Poland.
Rostec Starts Assembling the First Mi-171A3 Offshore Helicopter
Russian Helicopters holding company (part of Rostec State Corporation) has started assembling the first prototype of Mi-171A3 offshore helicopter. Equipment for assembling the fuselage was put into operation at the Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant. Mi-171A3 comes with several significant upgrades when compared to Mi-171A2: a new airframe that integrates a crash-resistant fuel system into the cargo bay floor and modernized avionics, upgraded for offshore operations and flights in the Arctic. The model also features widespread use of composite materials, which significantly reduce its weight. “The development of Mi-171A3 involves extensive cooperation between Rostec's enterprises. The nose part of the helicopter and side panels from polymer composite materials are manufactured at Progress Arsenyev Aviation Company, the cargo bay floor is manufactured by Kazan Helicopters. The new modification was designed for offshore operations in oil and gas enterprises, so it meets the strictest requirements in the field of flight safety and air navigation. We plan to obtain a type certificate and start serial production in 2022,” said the Industrial Director of the Aviation cluster of the Rostec State Corporation, Anatoly Serdyukov. Mi-171A3 offshore helicopter will meet the latest international safety requirements, including the international IOGP standard developed by oil companies for offshore operation of helicopters. “We have modernized our production process, allowing us to launch the assembly line for the new Mi-171A3 offshore helicopter. The equipment for the new helicopter was manufactured and installed using coordinate-measuring machines and laser trackers, which will significantly increase the quality and accuracy of the assembly. We are planning to present the first prototype at the MAKS-2021 air show,” said the Director General of Russian Helicopters holding company Andrey Boginsky.
LightAir tests air purification technology against coronavirus
LightAir (LAIR, NGM) is initiating tests on coronavirus with a leading European virus research institute. The tests will show how well the Swedish company's IonFlow technology also prevents contact and airborne transmission of COVID19. A scientific study from Karolinska Institutet has previously shown that the technology inactivates influenza viruses immediately and continuously, and prevents airborne transmission. In the coming months, specific tests will be carried out to show how well IonFlow also neutralizes coronaviruses such as SARS-CoV-2, which causes the disease COVID19, and SARS-CoV-1, which causes the disease SARS. LightAir’s patented IonFlow technology and its antiviral properties have previously been the subject of an extensive scientific research study, which was led by Professor Lennart Svensson, Linköping University Hospital, and Professor Hans Wigzell of Karolinska Institutet. The study, published in June 2015 in Nature Scientific Reports, concludes that IonFlow technology prevents contact-based and airborne transmission of the viruses examined, which included those causing influenza and winter vomiting disease. "The global world of scientists, as well as national authorities, now generally agree that viruses are spread through air, and that this also applies to COVID," says Lars Liljeholm, CEO of LightAir. “Our technology destroys viruses immediately and while they are still in the air. This is completely different from conventional solutions based on fans and filters, which may collect virus particles, and which can reduce but not prevent airborne transmission.” “There are great similarities among viruses, but of course also differences. It is gratifying that we have now created the opportunity to investigate IonFlow’s effectiveness against specific coronaviruses. This will supplement the previous in-depth study from Karolinska Institutet, which already showed that the technology prevents the spread of a number of viruses.”
Russian Helicopters delivers first Ansat to a client in Europe
The Russian Helicopters holding company (part of Rostec State Corporation) has delivered a first Ansat helicopter to a client in Europe. The operator of the rotorcraft, which is equipped for medical operations, is the Ministry of Interior of the Republika Srpska (Bosnia and Herzegovina). This is the first of three helicopters under the delivery contract. Ansat for Republika Srpska comes with a medical module equipped with a stretcher and a medical shelf. The helicopter cabin has place for transporting one patient and two chairs for accompanying doctors. Equipment configuration includes a system for artificial lung ventilation, tele-ECG allowing to monitor cardiac activity in real time, and various other equipment for the evacuation of patients of varying severity. The delivery set includes five seats, which can be installed instead of the medical module and carry 7 passengers in the helicopter cabin. The helicopter also comes with active vibration control system. "This delivery testifies that Ansat is competitive on the European market, and we see potential for new orders. I am confident that European operators will appreciate the favorable cost of operating the helicopter, its versatility and reliability. Two more Ansats will be handed over to the law enforcement agencies of Republika Srpska in 2021 and 2022. They will be additionally equipped with searchlights, fast-rope deployment system, a winch and an external sling", said the Director General of Russian Helicopters holding company Andrey Boginsky. The delivery contract of three helicopters to the Republic of Srpska also included the training of three technicians and two pilots of the customer in the Kazan Helicopters Aviation Training Center. The program included training in the design and maintenance of the airframe, power plant and systems of Ansat helicopter for aircraft technicians, as well as theoretical training, classes on the new Ansat simulator and practical flight training for pilots. The cadets successfully passed the exams and received documents that confirm their qualifications. The Aviation Training Center will provide further multi-stage training of flight and technical personnel as more helicopters are delivered. During the next 2 years, 4 more pilots and 6 technicians will go through training. Ansat is a light multipurpose twin-engine helicopter. Its serial production is deployed at Kazan Helicopters. Its design allows converting it into a cargo version or into a passenger rotorcraft that can lift up to seven people. Ansat is certified for use in the temperatures ranging between -45°С and +50°С, and in high mountains. In 2019, the Federal Air Transport Agency certified an increase in the airworthiness of Ansat's fuselage to 16,000 flying hours. In 2020, the Russian aviation authorities certified Ansat for installation of an emergency floatation system and isolation units for transporting patients with coronavirus disease, it also received a more advanced and ergonomic medical module. Several main components of the helicopter received approval for the increase of their airworthiness restrictions.
Russian Helicopters delivers first batch of helicopter knock-down kits to Kazakhstan
The Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant of the Russian Helicopters holding (part of the Rostec State Corporation) has delivered two Mi-8AMT helicopter knock-down kits to Kazakhstan to be assembled on the territory of the customer. The delivery is based on a trilateral contract signed by Kazakhstan Engineering, Kazakhstan's Aircraft Repair Plant No. 405 and Russian Helicopters for semi-knock-down (SKD) assembly of Mi-8AMT / Mi-171E helicopters. The contract, signed in 2019, provides for a total of 17 helicopter kits during 2020-2022. The main customers for the Mi-8AMT helicopters in Kazakhstan are the National Guard under the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Committee for Emergency Situations. The first batch of Mi-8AMT kits will assembled for the needs of the Committee for Emergency Situations. "I'm confident that successful implementation of the semi-knock-down assembly project of Mi-8AMT / Mi-171 helicopters in Kazakhstan will become a significant step forward in the development of the country's helicopter industry and will allow local enterprises to increase their scientific and technical potential", said Leonid Belykh, Managing Director of the Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant. Assembly and adaptation of the helicopters to the customer's requirements will be carried out by the Aircraft Repair Plant No. 405 in the city of Almaty. The plant holds the greatest competencies in repairing and maintaining this helicopter type in the Central Asian region. The plant is certified by both Kazakhstan and international authorities for the repair, modernization and maintenance of Mi-8/17/171 helicopters. The assembled helicopters will be tasked with transportation of passengers and goods, emergency rescue operations, forest protection, firefighting, ambulance services and law enforcement operations. The operational experience and extensive service network of the Aircraft Repair Plant No. 405 will provide integrated service support for customers in the field of deployment. Kazakhstan has been a long-term partner of the Russian Helicopters and the country operates dozens of Mi-8AMT / Mi-171 helicopters. The republic became the first foreign operator of the latest Mi-171A2 helicopter.
Russian Helicopters launches Mi-8 test operation program in Indonesia
Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant (U-UAP) as part of Russian Helicopters holding company (State Corporation Rostec) launches Mi-8/171 type helicopter test operation program, which is aimed at the assessing of all the advantages of helicopters real operation in conjunction with all available corporate support tools and implemented aftersales services of Russian Helicopters holding company. The pilot project is being implemented in Indonesia, where two Mi-8AMT helicopters are already involved in firefighting operations. Helicopters sent to the Republic of Indonesia with crew and technical staff of U-UAP were relocated to the island of Kalimantan almost immediately upon arrival to extinguish forest fires. In the future, the rotorcraft will be on operational duty on the islands of Sumatra and Kalimantan. "A contract with PT. National Utility Helicopters (PT. NUH), a utility helicopter operator in Indonesia with 50 years of experience in providing services for Indonesian Government as well as private companies, has become the pilot project of this program. The main task under the contract is to carry out firefighting operations in the region, as well as provide consulting services regarding the formation of its own air fleet of Indonesian operators for annual firefighting operations” said Leonid Belykh, Managing Director of U-UAP. АМТ-3 Ми-8АМТ In the process of temporary use of helicopters, the customer gets the opportunity to consult the company's specialists in 24/7 mode, access to a replacement fund and a fund of additional equipment. It is worth noting, that one of the first Mi-171A2 helicopters manufactured by the enterprise, since 2018 has been participating in a test operation program at UTair-VU airline, where it successfully fulfills the tasks facing the operator and demonstrates high flight performances. The experience of the joint work of the manufacturer and the customer was reflected in the U-UAP helicopter test operation program for Indonesia. Mi-8/171 helicopters for a long time have been involved in the disaster relief operations not only in Russia, but also abroad. They have proved themselves as one of the most effective tools in the firefighting, medicine delivery and casualty evacuation operations, as well as in passenger and cargo transportation to hard-to-reach areas.
Purdue researchers working with Abu Dhabi on cybersecurity of drones as city seeks to become a tech hub of Middle East
Abu Dhabi has intentions of making the city a leading hub for technology and innovation in the Middle East. Part of that evolution is utilizing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), or drones, to assist with as many tasks as possible, from delivering packages to aiding in police operations to helping investigate crashes on highways to delivering high-value transports, like organs for transplant. With autonomy, though, comes risks of hackers and complications between interacting agents. A group of Purdue University researchers have been tasked to make sure drones and their systems could operate securely, safely and efficiently in the United Arab Emirates capital. Inseok Hwang, a professor in the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics, is principal investigator on a three-year, $2.3-million grant from the Technology Innovation Institute in Abu Dhabi to study the application of secure drone swarms in urban environments. The project requires expertise in autonomous vehicles, control, sensing, virtual reality and security. James Goppert, a visiting assistant professor in the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics and managing director of the UAS Research and Test Facility, and Dongyan Xu, the Samuel D. Conte Professor of Computer Science and director of CERIAS (Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security), Purdue’s cybersecurity research and education center, are co-principal investigators on the project. “We will address this problem in a highly integrated, interdisciplinary way,” Hwang said. “We will consider it from the program level to the high-level network of systems, so we accomplish the hierarchic way from the very detailed lower level, the software and hardware level, to the large network of vehicles and from the single vehicle to multivehicle. So it’s multidimensional. That’s one of the unique pieces of this project.” The project will utilize one of Purdue’s unrivaled assets, the UAS Research and Test Facility. The 20,000-square-foot, 35-feet high facility, located at Hangar 4 of the Purdue University Airport, features the largest indoor motion capture system in the world and offers unique capabilities for novel research. Goppert will build a mixed reality environment, combining a virtual reality urban environment with a scaled physical model of the city. The drones will fly and navigate the city, and the environment can be programmed to simulate a wide range of settings, including weather, traffic and urban development, to test the drones’ applicability and agility. The testing will be done with single vehicles as well as swarms, which could include 10 drones. Hwang said he hasn’t seen any research done using mixed reality to this scale. Neither has Goppert. “Our unique capability is that we have such a large environment to do it,” Goppert said. “Just running so many vehicles at once is going to be a challenge. In the past, several vehicles have been used. But if we’re going to be running swarms where each vehicle needs a rendered virtual mixed reality image, that’s going to be really computationally challenging. That’s what we’re pushing forward. “We thought we could try to bring it as close to real-life as possible to get as many of the bugs worked out before they actually deploy such a system. We can do it all in software, but there’s an added advantage in bringing it closer to reality by making some of it actual robots.” Hwang and Xu will have a multitiered approach from the cybersecurity and robustness standpoint. Xu will investigate from the cyber perspective of security, encryption, authentication and peer-to-peer communications. Hwang will develop a mathematical model and use the control theoretical solution approach, assessing potential cyberattacks on the systems and working to design a controller in such a way that the system becomes more resilient to attacks. “This project reflects exciting synergies between two areas of technical excellence at Purdue: aeronautics and astronautics, and cybersecurity,” Xu said. Ultimately, all of the research will be integrated and pieced together around the state-of-the-art test bed, which could happen toward the end of the second year of the three-year grant. With a variety of drones tasked with different assignments, “how do we make sure they play well together?” Goppert said. “We’re trying to simulate that within our facility.”
LOT with Profit and a Record number of Passengers in 2019
In 2019, LOT’s revenues from sales amounted to PLN 7.37 billion, i.e. over one billion more than in 2018. The company’s operating profit amounted to PLN 113.9 million. Last year, LOT carried a record number of 10 million passengers on board and launched 15 new connections. This marks another year in which the company managed to preserve the viability of its operations despite problems with the global grounding of the B737MAX fleet and with the Rolls Royce engines used in the Boeing 787. LOT closed the previous year with its operating profit, i.e. profit on the carriage of passengers, amounting to PLN 113.9 million. At the same time, the company managed to increase its revenues on sales to PLN 7.37 billion, compared with PLN 6.19 billion in the preceding year. Its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) totalled PLN 142.6 million in the previous year, while its earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) amounted to PLN 91.9 million. Last year was the fourth consecutive year in which we generated profit and increased the scale of our activities, carrying a record number of 10 million passengers on board. This confirms that the profitable growth strategy, which we adopted in 2016, was correct. I would like to thank the entire LOT team for their hard work and our passengers for their trust - says Rafał Milczarski, CEO of LOT. In 2019, the greatest growth in the number of passengers compared with 2018 could be observed in the case of long-haul flights (growth by 30.4%). In the case of short- and medium-haul flights, there were 11.4% more passengers than in the preceding year, while in the case of domestic flights the growth amounted to 4.7%. The year 2019 saw the launch of routes such as Warsaw-Miami, Warsaw-Delhi, Warsaw-Colombo and Budapest-Seoul, which resulted in the presence of more than 120 connections in the Polish carrier’s portfolio by the end of the year. Naturally, this year has been much more challenging and we are currently focusing on optimisation of our activities in order to survive the most difficult time for the airline industry. Fortunately, our results from previous years demonstrate that we can work with dedication and achieve our objectives - adds Rafał Milczarski.
Rostec starts assembling parts for the first Russian offshore helicopter Mi-171A3
Russian Helicopters holding company (part of Rostec State Corporation) started production of the first pre-production prototype of Mi-171A3 offshore helicopter. Flight tests of the state-of-the-art rotorcraft are to start on the summer of 2021. The first Mi-171A3 offshore helicopter is being built by several plants forming part of Russian Helicopters which specialize in serial production, and JSC “National Helicopter Center Мil&Kamov” (NHC). They are working in close cooperation. The main task of Mi-171A3 is servicing of offshore drilling rigs of companies in the fuel and energy sector. It is capable of transporting people, freight, and carrying out search and rescue operations if necessary – for that purpose, additional installation of a special complex comprising search capabilities, on-board hoists, and medical equipment is provided for. A company which uses the helicopter can convert it into a search-and-rescue version at its own base. "Unique solutions ensuring safety of flights over water have been developed for the first offshore helicopter in Russia. The helicopter's onboard equipment provides for navigation in high latitudes and communication with sea-going vessels. The helicopter has an emergency floatation system and life rafts, and a special crash-resistant fuselage section has been developed for it. Separate parts of the helicopter are already being assembled. The first rotorcraft for flights is to be assembled in early 2021 at Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant. Besides, in 2021 we plan to show the rotorcraft at MAKS International Aviation and Space Salon for the first time as one of the most recent key developments of Rostec," stated Rostec Aviation Cluster Industrial Director Anatoliy Serdyukov. After being completely assembled, the helicopter will be transferred to NHC; the National Helicopter Center will add avionics to it. After that, a cycle of ground and flight tests will take place. Other enterprises of the holding company will also take an active part in helicopter production. Kazan Helicopters will make the helicopter's cargo floor, which has been made similar to that of Mi-38. Progress Arsenyev Aviation Company is making parts of composite materials for the nose and board panels for the middle part of the fuselage section. "Mi-171A3 is very much sought-after for offshore operations. The rotorcraft has been created as a result of cooperation among Rostec holding companies. Expanding hydrocarbon production on the Arctic shelf requires a fleet of reliable and modern helicopters, which can be operated in the most difficult weather and climatic conditions," emphasized Director General of Russian Helicopters holding company Andrey Boginsky. "Starting from 2022, we will be ready to hand over the first serial helicopters to the launch customer." Mi-171A3 is a multipurpose helicopter meeting the most modern Russian and international aviation standards, including IOGP requirements. The helicopter development started in 2018. The rotorcraft's maximum takeoff weight is 13,000 kg. It can carry up to 24 passengers, and the maximum range is 1,000 km. The helicopter is intended for operation in various climatic conditions, including maritime, tropical and cold climate, with ambient temperatures ranging between -50 С and +50 С. Mi-171AZ avionics will provide for automated and manual control of the helicopter at all stages of the flight, from takeoff to landing, and automatic piloting is possible for both air routes and non-regulatory airspace, irrespective of the degree of ground-based radio navigation.