Op-Ed Columnists – Page 10

  • Opinion

    OPINION: Will Lockheed cope with F-35 production rate hike?


    ​A complex global supply chain, unfamiliar structural materials and aircraft systems, a history of supplier bottlenecks and serial breakdowns on the assembly line: are we talking about the Lockheed Martin F-35 or the Boeing 787? Frustratingly, the answer is both.

  • Oil Refinery

    OPINION: Oil's well for the airframers


    ​When Airbus and Boeing opted to launch re-engined versions of their A320 and 737 families rather than develop all-new narrowbodies, their logic was that – while the industry was happy with the design, reliability and capacity of their current single-aisle offerings – long-term high oil prices would spur a rush ...

  • A321neo

    OPINION: Airbus in it for the long-haul with A321


    ​The future of the long-haul narrowbody market is now slightly clearer. Airbus has officially launched a 4,000nm (7,400km)-range version of the A321neo that can match or exceed the Boeing 757-200, including the niche role of flying from the US East Coast to secondary cities in western Europe.

  • AirAsia A320

    OPINION: After Indonesia AirAsia crash, hand-wringing is not enough


    ​Modern airliners should not fall out of the sky, so why did an Indonesia AirAsia Airbus A320 do so with no emergency call? Unless it was some form of terrorism or sabotage one can only look to previous experience for answers.

  • Opinion

    OPINION: Airbus delivers great wide hope; but what next?


    ​A year ago, Airbus’s widebody strategy looked ragged at best. At one end of its offering, the A330 was a two-decade-old programme with a depleting backlog (its thirsty A340 sibling having already been killed off). At the other, the A380 was struggling to expand its appeal beyond Emirates. In the ...

  • Qatar Executive Bombardier Challenger 605

    OPINION: Are Gulf VIP airlines a First Class folly?


    ​How elastic is an airline brand? Two of the big three Gulf airlines have built on their reputations for innovative customer service with VIP charter spin-offs to tap a market beyond their top-end scheduled products.

  • UAV control

    OPINION: Nowhere to hide from UAVs?


    ​Civilian unmanned air vehicles – usually very small ones – are already big business, and the industry is growing apace. For that reason, not only the aviation industry but also society as a whole have to decide how best to take advantage of the advances these aircraft can bring, but ...

  • LOT 787

    OPINION: Lessons must be learned from 787 battery fires


    ​A pair of lithium ion batteries on the Boeing 787-8 – which should have been risk-assessment afterthoughts compared to the overall electrical system – became unexpected safety problems. Luckily, nobody was hurt and the aircraft escaped heavy damage. Why?

  • Rolls-Royce Trent 1000

    OPINION: Where next for Rolls-Royce?


    ​London investment bank Investec has called for a thorough strategy review at Rolls-Royce. The company’s directors may not take up the suggestion but, if they do, they may well conclude that their strategy is just fine as it is. But to propose other options is to raise serious questions for ...

  • Opinion

    OPINION: Airbus goes back to the drawing board with A350 training


    ​With the imminent entry into service of the Airbus A350, another modern aviation development comes to fruition – not just the A350 hardware or ­software, but the “liveware”.

  • Opinion

    OPINION: Typhoon radar deal to revive European dogfight


    ​Last week was a pretty good one for two of Europe’s remaining fighter manufacturers, as the continent’s four Eurofighter nations at last committed real money to provide the Typhoon with a new-generation radar, and as Saab received strong and long-term backing from new customer Brazil.

  • Virgin Galactic crash

    OPINION: Virgin Galactic crash shows that big dreams mean big risk


    ​Tragedy has struck space tourism a most cruel blow. First, the 31 October crash of SpaceShipTwo took the life of test pilot Mike Alsbury. Then, images of the in-flight break-up cast a calamitous cloud over the ­industry’s biggest and most important player – the ­Virgin Galactic/Scaled Composites team.

  • Opinion

    OPINION: Embraer must deliver on KC-390 promises


    ​One month ago, Embraer’s suggestion that its KC-390 military airlifter would be flown before year-end seemed the height of optimism, judging by an assembly line image of its first prototype example.

  • Opinion

    OPINION: Business jet builders must catch up on new designs


    ​A clean sheet of paper can get surprisingly expensive and even risky – especially in the business jet ­sector. Seven clean-sheet designs of aircraft or families have been unveiled since 2007, when Bombardier launched the composite-skinned Learjet 85. That aircraft is now two years behind schedule and faces an ...

  • Opinion

    OPINION: Airbus and Boeing are right to have great expectations for China


    ​Austerity-gripped European countries would love China’s problems. As Beijing turns down the inflationary heat, Asia’s biggest economy will grow about 7% this year – much less than the double-digit rates of recent years, but eye-watering by Western standards.

  • Air France pilots

    ​OPINION: The crucial task of tackling Europe’s labour issues


    It’s been a tough few months for Alexandre de Juniac. Just two days into his strategy to restructure short-haul, the Air France-KLM boss had to make a mid-air turnback – perhaps after instructions from the French government.

  • e-cigarette

    OPINION: Why aviation should stub out e-cigarette threat


    ​Until now, the debate around electronic cigarettes has centred on their health credentials. While their makers – and many medical experts – claim they are a safe and effective method of quitting tobacco, others fret that so-called vaping is as antisocial as smoking and can be a gateway into that ...

  • Gulfstrea

    OPINION: Gulfstream ups stakes in large cabin battle


    ​Twelve months ago, the biggest mysteries in business aviation were the strategies and designs beneath the cloak of secrecy covering Dassault’s “SMS” project and Gulfstream’s “P42” programme. With the twin unveilings of the Gulfstream G500 and G600, the market finally has answers – along with a few more questions.

  • MH370 memorial

    OPINION: Why flight tracking philosophies must align


    ​Another rift in the competitive landscape between Airbus and Boeing has appeared. Airbus is ready to move forward with a deployable flight data and voice recorder system for commercial aircraft. Boeing has installed deployable recorders on at least three ­military aircraft fleets, but disagrees that the technology is appropriate or ...

  • Opinion

    OPINION: Middle-sized jets mean business


    ​Looking at the amount of product innovation on the business aviation market, one might be tempted to think: “Crisis, what crisis?” To give the surviving airframers their due, they responded to the collapse in fortunes in 2008-09 not by hoping normal service would soon be resumed, but by aggressively pursuing ...