Press Releases – Mar 2012

 

29.03.12 | Airvod and TriaGnoSys announce dynamic partnership to enable Seatcentric cabin networks

Airvod Entertainment and TriaGnoSys have today launched an exciting partnership to provide aspects of the wireless distribution of Inflight Entertainment (IFE) content to seat-back screens and passengers’ own smartphones, tablets and laptops, as well as inflight connectivity for live updates.

Airvod’s SEATCENTRIC® solution provides each passenger with self-contained entertainment and communications centre at each seat. TriaGnoSys’ connectivity software will collaborate on aspects of the airborne network to enable the wireless distribution of content, and inflight connectivity that will be incorporated into SEATCENTRIC® system. This dynamic collaboration means airlines will be able to provide updates during flights.

Speaking about the new partnership, CEO of Airvod Entertainment, Terry Bonar said, “We are delighted to announce this partnership with TriaGnoSys.

“TriaGnoSys offers Airvod a new dimension in terms of capability and progression of our operations in this area and we are very excited about exploring all avenues in this relationship. It is especially important for us as it ensure that Airvod growing customer base can be guaranteed improved connectivity services and have a future proofed system.

“Airvod continues to expand and this deal will ensure we can increase our investment in R&D and expand the company’s global reach,” said Bonar.

Axel Jahn, Managing Director of TriaGnoSys, said: “By working together, TriaGnoSys and Airvod are making IFE simpler for airlines in two key ways. Uploading of content is much more efficient, which saves time. And there are considerable weight savings – wireless is the future. By eliminating cabling and complex networks we reduce the weight of a twin aisle aircraft by over 1 Tonne.

“Passengers also benefit because they have the choice of using the seat-back screen or their own devices, as well as live content updates. And because we are using the latest Wi-Fi technology – 802.11n – performance is the same as a wired system.”

 

29.03.12 | Freebird Airlines obtains paperless cockpit approval

Turkish carrier Freebird Airlines received the approval from the Turkish aviation authorities to operate its fleet of Airbus A320 and A321 with an almost paperless cockpit based on a Class 2 Electronic Flight Bag which is installed in the cockpit and directly linked to the aircraft systems. This achievement, certified by the Turkish Directorate General of Civil Aviation, is the result of the close cooperation between Lufthansa Systems, Teledyne and navAero. While Freebird uses Lufthansa Systems’ electronic navigation charts Lido/eRouteManual, the main shells and EFB hardware are provided by the other partners. The airline is now able to remove 95 per cent of the paper in the cockpit. Company forms, operations manuals, technical documentation and up-to-date navigation charts are available electronically. Additionally, the crew uses the EFB for loadsheet and performance calculations.

Freebird Airlines is the second airline in Europe that uses a Class 2 EFB on A320 family aircraft. “Removing 70 kilograms of weight from the cockpits of our aircraft results in savings in both fuel and printing costs. Accurate performance calculations eliminate conservatism which was built into traditional runway take-off weight charts while significantly extending engine life through the use of optimal flex temperatures on take-off – as well as increasing optional payload on weight-restricted flights”, says Capt. Auke van Ginkel, Flight Operations Engineering & Support Manager at Freebird Airlines. “It is another example of how we create value for our passengers, employees and shareholders by striving for excellence.”

“We are proud to contribute to the success of Freebird with Lido/eRouteManual”, says Marco Cesa, Senior Vice President Regional Management Europe at Lufthansa Systems. “As the crews have been using our paper-based navigation charts for quite some time, they benefit from the identical structure and layout of the electronic charts which facilitates the migration. This integrated approach underlines our drive to best assist our customers in optimizing their business processes.”

Istanbul-based Freebird was founded in June 2000 and operates a fleet of four Airbus A320 and two A321 in Europe and the Middle East. In 2002 the company was the first Turkish airline to be granted ISO 9001:2000 Certification. In 2006 it was the first charter airline that achieved the IATA Operational Safety Audit registration (IOSA).

 

28.03.12 | Thai chooses Bluebox Ai for portable IFE enhancement

Thai Airways International has appointed Bluebox Avionics to provide its Bluebox Ai inflight entertainment application for iPad to enhance the Royal Silk class experience.

The initial deployment of 650 iPad units starting in June 2012, will provide passengers early window Hollywood movies and a range of TV, music video and CD content.

Bluebox will also create a custom branded user interface and supply technical and media support services.
Bluebox Avionics is the leader in digital content solutions, utilising the very latest consumer technology to deliver low cost, high value IFE applications for iPad and other digital platforms.

For more information, visit us at stand 6F32 Hall B6 at Aircraft Interiors Expo or contact us on: info@blueboxavionics.com

 

28.03.12 | Kenya Airways returns to digEcor with the launch of the digEplayer L10

digEcor has secured a second digEplayer L10 client – Kenya Airways (KQ). Launching in early June, passengers on KQ’s B767 flying to Paris, London, Rome, Dubai, Bangkok, Mumbai and other destinations will enjoy digEcor’s newest and premium entertainment solution.

Kenya Airways was an early and staunch digEcor customer from 2005 to 2010 and flew the award winning digEplayer 5500. After a brief gap, KQ is returning to digEcor with this new launch.

The L10, a handheld IFE device, offers an 18+ hour battery, 10 inch screen, Gigabit Ethernet port for fast content loads and a capacitive touch screen. Using the dedicated content update station, 80 L10s can be simultaneously loaded with new content from a single server. The digEplayer L10 is also DO-160 emissions compliant.

To accommodate KQ’s passenger diversity on the various routes flown by their B767, the movie selection will include Hollywood, Hindi and African movies, in addition to television programming, music, music videos and games. The L10 will be offered for free to Business Class passengers.

“Why invent a solution when one already exists? The digEplayer 5500 worked so well for KQ that we are confident that the new digEplayer L10 will perform even better,” commented Owino Obonyo, Manager of Services Procurement for Kenya Airways.

“We are very excited to welcome Kenya Airways back to the digEcor family of customers and look forward to serving ‘The Pride of Africa,’” added digEcor Marketing Director Adam Williams.

For more information about the digEplayer, please visit www.digecor.com.

 

28.03.12 | Lufthansa Systems wins Crystal Cabin Award 2012 for BoardConnect

Lufthansa Systems today announced that its innovative in-flight entertainment system BoardConnect received the prestigious Crystal Cabin Award in the “Passenger Comfort” category at the Aircraft Interiors Expo 2012 in Hamburg. This award, which is presented annually by the Senate of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, is the only international prize for excellence and innovation in the field of aircraft interiors.

Passengers can use mobile devices such as laptops, tablets and smartphones to join the BoardConnect WiFi network and access audio, video, games and information stored on an onboard server. If the aircraft has broadband Internet access, passengers can also surf the web during their flight, write emails or stay in touch with friends and family through Facebook, Twitter and other social networks.

BoardConnect enables airlines to utilize new channels of communication and interaction with passengers, as well as new information products and services that offer carriers additional sources of revenue. Unlike traditional solutions, the system works entirely without cables (with the exception of the connection between the on-board server and access points). This means it can be installed in the aircraft without requiring longer ground times. It is also lighter and thus saves up to 20 metric tons of kerosene annually per aircraft.

“We are proud of this award. BoardConnect is an example of how Lufthansa Systems uses its technological expertise to develop innovative solutions which contribute to our customers’ success in a variety of ways,” said Stefan Hansen, CEO of Lufthansa Systems AG. “I would like to thank everyone who put their knowledge and experience into making this product a reality.”

Airlines from all over the world have shown great interest in BoardConnect. Condor and Virgin America are the first airlines to have installed the innovative system in their fleets. The Australian airline Qantas has just completed a successful BoardConnect test spanning several weeks in one of its aircraft.

 

27.03.12 | Panasonic Avionics Corporation Leases Additional Ku Satellite Capacity from Australian Satellite Communications

Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic), the world leader in in-flight entertainment and communications (IFEC), today announced an agreement with Australian Satellite Communications for additional capacity on the GE23 satellite. Under terms of the agreement, Panasonic will lease additional capacity on the satellite’s South Pacific beam and add new capacity on the GE23 South West Pacific beam.

Prior to this announcement, Panasonic had leased capacity from Australian Satellite Communications for airline routes over Australia and New Zealand, and for trans-Tasman flights with teleporting from ASC’s facility in Adelaide.

“We are very excited to extend our relationship with Australian Satellite Communications and provide even more capacity for our Global Communications Service,” said David Bruner, Vice President of Panasonic Avionics Corporation’s Global Communications Service. “This agreement moves us a step closer to completing the world’s first global Ku frequency, high bandwidth aeronautical network, and we look forward to providing our customers true broadband service in these key Pacific regions.”

Panasonic’s Global Communications Suite provides two-way broadband connectivity to an aircraft. It supports a wide range of passenger and crew applications including in-flight broadband Internet access over Wi-Fi to passengers, and mobile phone service offered in collaboration with AeroMobile. Panasonic’s in-flight connectivity service also includes the first and only global live television service to offer content from BBC World News, BBC Arabic, NHK World Premium, France 24, Euronews, IMG Media’s Barclays’ Premier League Channel, and IMG Media’s Sport 24.

 

27.03.12 | Panasonic Avionics Corporation Adds Additional Satellite Capacity Over Europe, The Mediterranean Sea and Africa

Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic), the world leader in in-flight entertainment and communications (IFEC), today announced that is has added additional coverage and capacity for its Global Communications Service via the Intelsat-14 satellite which is operated by Intelsat.

David Bruner, Vice President of Panasonic Avionics Corporation’s Global Communications Service said, “The coverage provided by the Intelsat-14 satellite is a strategic addition to our global aeronautical broadband network because it provides seamless service to several African destinations and trans-Africa air routes which are important to our in-flight connectivity customers.”

Panasonic’s Global Communications Suite provides two-way broadband connectivity to an aircraft. It supports a wide range of passenger and crew applications including in-flight broadband Internet access over Wi-Fi to passengers, and mobile phone service offered in collaboration with AeroMobile. Panasonic’s in-flight connectivity service also includes the first and only global live television service to offer content from BBC World News, BBC Arabic, NHK World Premium, France 24, Euronews, IMG Media’s Barclays’ Premier League Channel, and IMG Media’s Sport 24.

 

27.03.12 | JAL’s First Two 787 Dreamliners Arrive in Tokyo

Japan Airlines (JAL) took delivery of its first two Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners on March 25, 2012 in Seattle. Both aircraft (JA825J and JA822J) arrived in Japan today, touching down in Tokyo, Narita at 5.58pm and at Tokyo, Haneda at 7.14pm respectively (local time).

These two 787 Dreamliners – powered by General Electric GEnx engines, will be used on JAL’s new Tokyo=Boston route which begins on April 22.

Stepping off the delivery flight, representative director and president of the JAL Group Yoshiharu Ueki said “The in-flight experience of this aircraft was extraordinary and beyond my expectations.”

“I am very proud that JAL played a part in its development and had our ideas incorporated into this magnificent airplane.”

“It was my first long-haul flight on the Dreamliner and it was great to experience firsthand, the enhanced cabin environment which made it a truly pleasant journey,” said Mike Denton, President of Boeing Japan. “With JAL’s trademark hospitable service, the experience will be complete and I am certain customers will come back time and again.”

The keys to both aircraft were handed by CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes Mr. Jim Albaugh to Mr. Ueki at a delivery event in Seattle on March 26. For more videos and photos, visit http://www.newairplane.com/787/delivery/.

 

27.03.12 | Thales and China Electronics Technology Avionics Sign Joint Venture Agreement for the new C919 aircraft

Thales, a leader in In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) systems and China Electronics Technology Avionics Co., Ltd. (CETCA), signed a Joint Venture Agreement that brings together worldclass technology solutions companies dedicated to the new C919 aircraft, manufactured by Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC). The official signing took place at Aircraft Interiors Expo, Hamburg (Germany), in attendance of Thales and CETCA senior management. The Joint Venture Operations are expected to begin in third quarter of 2012, following final approval by the relevant authorities.

The partnership supports the integration of the Thales TopSeries system in the cabin of the C919. Designed and built in China, the 156 – 190 seat C919 will first take flight in 2014 with aircraft deliveries scheduled to begin in 2016. The Thales system will be a scalable platform offering services ranging from interactive audio capability through to full in-seat on-demand services, with an emphasis on minimizing weight, cost and power consumption. Future evolution of the system will likely include wireless networks and connectivity.

Thales and CETCA are dedicated to establishing this Joint Venture as a global Center of Excellence which provides capabilities covering research development, production, adaptation, maintenance for the in-flight entertainment market. The Joint Venture will
augment Thales’s existing market leading IFEC business based in Irvine, CA. This Joint Venture takes C919 as the first initiative, and sells IFEC systems and equipment to COMAC and other Chinese OEMs. In addition, based on customer requirements, the Joint Venture will provide products and system integration in support of Thales’s core IFEC business to
related aircraft worldwide.

“The global strength of Thales Group and our investment and growth strategy in partnership with both CETCA and COMAC is a strong combination that will ultimately change the landscape of the civil aerospace marketplace in China. We fully expect that there will be excellent demand for the C919 in China and we are proud to be part of this business arrangement,” said Olivier Guibert, President Thales China and North Asia region.

Mr. Zeng Li, General Manager of CETCA, stated that the “C919 program is just the start. China’s civil aviation industry is under fast development and the partnership with Thales has great potential.” Over the next 20 years, the China market is forecasted to deliver 4,330 new aircraft with 71% being single aisle aircraft (excluding retrofit aircraft). The Joint Venture is in a position to leverage and evolve current technologies that optimize offerings for the single aisle and regional markets.

This finalized business partnership underscores Thales’s position as an innovator and leading aerospace cabin and systems integrator and its commitment to the China market. Today, Thales airline customers in China include: Air China, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern, Hainan Airlines and its Hong Kong Airlines. For these and other carriers, Thales continues to expand its product support and media integration capabilities in Beijing and nearby areas. Thales is mobilizing more resources and building relationships that provide immediate value to China and its local airlines.

 

27.03.12 | First deployment of the OnAir / TriaGnoSys inflight Connectivity solution through Scandinavian Avionics

Scandinavian Avionics is acting as an integrator and distributor of the OnAir/TriaGnoSys inflight connectivity solution and the first installation, now flying, is on a Tupolev VIP jet, based in Russia.

The turnkey solution allows passengers to use their mobile devices for calls, text messaging, email and to access the Internet. Sergei Avvakumov, Division Manager of Scandinavian Avionics, said, “The process of equipping the first aircraft with the OnAir/TriaGnoSys solution was very straightforward and incredibly fast. Our customer asked us to meet very tight deadlines, which we were able to do because of the quality of the solution and the professionalism of the
team.”

The small, lightweight and flexible solution is available for a full range of jets. For the first customer, it was integrated to the Thrane & Thrane A700 system, but has the flexibility to be used with any SwiftBroadband, Ku- or Ka-band satcom system.

“OnAir is a key player in the ever-expanding inflight connectivity market and we work hard to ensure our solution is available across the world, and for as many aircraft types as possible,” said Ian Dawkins, OnAir CEO. “To do that, we need to remain flexible, agile and innovative and the establishment of such relationships help us to reach as many VIP/government aircraft operators as possible.”

The connectivity solution uses Inmarsat SwiftBroadband, which provides consistent global coverage, as well as a clear deployment path to Global Xpress, Inmarsat’s global Ka-band solution.

Axel Jahn, TriaGnoSys managing director, said, “Ease of installation and operation were central to the design of the hardware. It is available as retrofit and soon as linefit, with retrofit taking place during overnight stops. It has unconstrained mounting options, low power consumption and no scheduled maintenance. It is therefore flexible enough to be suitable for any aircraft type, from the smallest business jet to the largest commercial airliner.”

 

27.03.12 | SiT Approaches Airbus Line-Fit Offerability

Zodiac Aerospace is pleased to announce significant milestone achievements with its SiT (Seat integrated Technology) IFE systems.

SiT is a new, state-of-the-art Audio and Video On Demand (AVOD) In-Flight Entertainment system that moves all IFE content to the seat, eliminating servers and data streaming to monitors and dramatically improving system responsiveness.

Zodiac Aerospace led the IFE industry as the first to develop Seat Centric and Passenger Centric™ IFE solutions, greatly simplifying IFE whole cabin system architectures.

SiT offers a wholly new “simplified architecture,” significantly reducing overall IFE system weight, lowering cost of ownership while limiting integration costs and dramatically improving system reliability, thus assuring IFE system availability for passengers at unprecedented levels.

SiT also eases installation issues while using available and fully mature and tested information technologies.

This innovative system design will optimize maintenance operations by allowing simple and rapid tasks that lowers operating costs.

Entire cabin A340-200 retrofits have been completed and are flying at Royal Jordanian and South African Airways representing the first ever embedded seat centric installations in history.

A smooth development and installation process led to on-time completion of Supplemental Type Certificates (STC’s) and successful on-time SiT program entry into service at each airline.

Passenger experience on installed aircraft has been excellent, with record breaking aircraft dispatch reliability achieved. Additional airline customer orders have been received, including retrofits on Boeing and Airbus aircraft.

A new generation SiT system has been engineered to reduce whole aircraft IFE system weight and Smart Display Unit thickness, enhancing seat integration and contributing to the superior SiT Passenger Centric™ IFE experience.

A significant achievement is the integration of SiT’s thinnest Smart Display Unit with Zodiac Aerospace’s Dragonfly seat, resulting in the lowest combined Seat plus IFE system weight in the industry.

In addition to the successful entry into service of SiT retrofit programs at multiple airlines, SiT Qualification is underway at Airbus for A330-300, new line-fit aircraft for Corsair Fly.

Based on current progress, SiT expects to be offerable in the Airbus A330 Catalogue by Summer 2012. The first, fully certified SiT Line-Fit equipped aircraft is scheduled to deliver to Corsair Fly in November 2012.

 

27.03.12 | Panasonic Avionics Corporation announces agreement with Airbus to line-fit its Global Communications Suite on an Airbus A380 aircraft

Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic), the world leader in in-flight entertainment and communications (IFEC), today announced an agreement with Airbus for the first line-fit installation of its Global Communications Suite on an A380 aircraft.

David Bruner, Vice President of Panasonic Avionics Corporation’s Global Communications Service said, “Broadband connectivity, especially on long-haul flights, is increasingly important to our customers, and we are very excited to be working with Airbus on this significant milestone.”

Panasonic’s Global Communications Suite provides two-way broadband connectivity to an aircraft. It supports a wide range of passenger and crew applications including in-flight broadband Internet access over Wi-Fi to passengers, and mobile phone service offered in collaboration with AeroMobile. Panasonic’s in-flight connectivity service also includes the first and only global live television service to offer content from BBC World News, BBC Arabic, NHK World Premium, France 24, Euronews, IMG Media’s Barclays’ Premier League Channel, and IMG Media’s Sport 24.

 

27.03.12 | Airbus expands the A350 XWB’s Catalogue offering for Premium Seating, Business Class

Airbus is enriching its Premium Seating, Business Class offering available in the A350 Catalogue*, working in partnership with Jamco America and EADS Sogerma. This will result in even more choice for future operators of the all-new A350 XWB family of airliners. These seats are planned to be displayed in the upcoming revision of the Catalogue offering by the end of the year.

Following an agreement to be signed at the Aircraft Interiors Expo 2012, Jamco America will become an A350 XWB Airbus Contracted Supplier (ACS) for premium seating products and will offer its all new premium business-class seat ‘Journey’ through Airbus A350 XWB Catalogue. This seat is aimed at the long-haul business segment and offers a six or seven abreast forward facing seat. A full-flat bed position offers excellent passenger comfort and an original kinematic system provides smooth transitions between seat and bed positions.

Meanwhile, EADS-Sogerma, an existing Airbus Contracted Supplier, will enrich the A350 XWB Catalogue with its ‘Equinox’ model. Available in six abreast configuration, it is being optimised for the A350 XWB’s wide fuselage. Equinox uses the vertical space to create a full-flat bed in a pitch range equivalent to current lie flat products. Privacy options enhance the passenger experience.

In addition to the above, Airbus will shortly enter into an agreement with Sicma to become an A350 XWB Airbus Contracted Supplier. Sicma is already undertaking a technical study on its ‘Cirrus’ and ‘Arcus’ seats for inclusion in the Catalogue. Cirrus offers a wide seat in a four-abreast, herringbone configuration, while the all-new Arcus seat is aimed at the ‘regional business’ segment and offers a seven-abreast forward-facing seat. Both seats transform into a full-flat bed.

 

27.03.12 | Panasonic Avionics Corporation Acquires Majority Stake in AeroMobile Communications

Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic), the world leader in in-flight entertainment and communications (IFEC), today announced that is has become the majority shareholder in AeroMobile Communications, LTD. (AeroMobile). The transaction underscores Panasonic’s commitment to AeroMobile and to its eXPhone product, which is a key element in the company’s long term in-flight connectivity and communications strategy.

Telenor, which previously was AeroMobile’s sole owner, remains the only other shareholder and will continue to bring its longstanding expertise in telecoms to AeroMobile.

Yasu Enokido, President and Chief Operating Officer for Panasonic Avionics Corporation said, “This is a natural extension of Panasonic Avionics’ our companies’ longstanding partnership with AeroMobile., As and we believe that, as a result of this transaction, our customers will benefit from an increased level of integration between our two companies.”

Pål Bjørdal, AeroMobile’s President and Chief Executive Officer added, “We are very excited to strengthen our ability to offer the highest levels of service to our airline customers and their passengers. We believe that this arrangement demonstrates the importance of this business both to Telenor and Panasonic, and by taking an active ownership position, Panasonic is clearly demonstrating its commitment to supporting this business in the future.”

Moving forward, AeroMobile will continue to operate as an independent company, offering industry-leading in-flight voice and data services. The company will continue to maintain and expand its global telecom roaming agreements and bring the AeroMobile service to an ever widening group of passengers.

eXPhone is offered by Panasonic, in collaboration with AeroMobile’s in-flight mobile phone service. It allows passengers to use their mobile phones, smart phones and BlackBerry® devices to make and receive voice calls and SMS text messages in flight, along with data services such as emails.

 

26.03.12 | Major focus on in-flight entertainment at Aircraft Interiors

A senior team from IFE Services, the leading in-flight entertainment(IFE) content service provider, will be attending this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo.

The event, being held from the 27-29 March in Hamburg, is being billed as “the launch pad for cabin programmes showcasing tomorrow’s designs, in-flight entertainment, connectivity and passenger services”.

This year a lot of attention will be given to the role that in-flight entertainment plays in enhancing the passenger experience. Indeed the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) will be hosting an educational session during the event entitled the ‘Onboard Experience’. Sessions will cover ‘Cabin Trends and Passenger Expectations’, ‘Consumer Devices in the Air’ and ‘Seat and IFE Integration.’ 500 companies will be exhibiting their products and services at this year’s show and over 7,500 delegates are expected to attend.

Commenting on the importance of Aircraft Interiors, IFE Services’ CEO Andy McEwan, said: “There will be a major focus on in-flight entertainment at this year’s event as the industry moves forward at pace. In recent months, we’ve seen a rapid increase in the adoption of onboard connectivity and wireless streaming by airlines as they look to bolster onboard revenues and offer passengers an even better experience. We are also seeing significant interest in the use of popular portable devices to deliver content such as the iPad, Samsung Galaxy and Sony PSP. These technology trends are likely to have a big impact on the way passengers are entertained in-flight, so there will be plenty to discuss over the three days.”

IFE Services is one of the world’s most experienced providers of in-flight entertainment solutions and currently services over 40 airlines. The company tailors IFE packages for airlines that include in-flight movies, TV showsand audio and produces original productions such as safety films, entertainment guides and GUI design.

The company’s UK team recently moved into state-of-the-art new offices after a multi-million pound refurbishment of its studio complex.

For more information about IFE Services visit: www.ifeservices.com

 

22.03.12 | Latest Blockbusters on BoardConnect from Lufthansa Systems

Airlines deploying BoardConnect, the innovative IFE solution from Lufthansa Systems, will now be able to entertain their passengers with the latest Hollywood movies. BoardConnect is the first wireless IFE system to have been approved by leading film studios for their “Early Window Content”. This term is used for movies not yet available for sale on the market on DVDs or Blu-ray discs, but which are released for distribution to airlines and hotels for showing on their in-flight/in-house entertainment systems.

To be approved for Early Window Content, systems used to broadcast such movies must first satisfy a set of stringent requirements in relation to data security in order to safeguard content copyright. Lufthansa Systems works very closely with leading Hollywood studios and the manufacturers of mobile devices to ensure that these content requirements can be met. The approval just granted relates to purpose-built in-seat display units and also to tablet PCs provided to passengers by the airlines themselves. Passengers’ own laptops, netbooks, tablets and smartphones are approved for “Late Window Content”, i.e. movies that have been released for commercial distribution.

“Airlines can use BoardConnect to offer the broad and attractive range of high-quality content capable of satisfying the diverse needs of today’s discerning traveler”, comments Norbert Müller, Head of BoardConnect Program Management at Lufthansa Systems. “The quality and scope of in-flight entertainment is a key service component and strongly influences the overall travel experience. This is why BoardConnect can give airlines a decisive competitive advantage.”

BoardConnect works by creating a Wi-Fi network on board the airplane. Unlike traditional solutions, it works entirely without cables apart from the connection between the on-board server and access points. This means it can be installed during night stops of an aircraft. It is also lighter and thus saves up to 20 tons of kerosene annually per aircraft.

BoardConnect also provide airlines with new customer communication channels, as well as new information products and services that offer carriers additional sources of revenue. Condor and Virgin America are the first airlines to have installed the innovative system in their fleets. The Australian airline Qantas has just completed a successful BoardConnect test spanning several weeks in one of its aircraft.

BoardConnect from Lufthansa Systems has been nominated for the Crystal Cabin Award, which will be presented during Aircraft Interior Expo 2012 in Hamburg. Come and visit us at booth 7B9 to learn more about BoardConnect.

 

21.03.12 | JAL to Serve AIR MISDO in Celebration of New Boston Route Next Month

In celebration of its new Boston route to be launched on April 22, 2012, Japan Airlines (JAL) has collaborated with Duskin Co., Ltd, to create AIR MISDO – a JAL Original version of doughnuts from the popular Mister Donut franchise.

The Mister Donut brand originated from Boston where it began humble operations in 1955. Today, it has expanded to become the largest doughnut franchise chain in Japan with more than 1,300 outlets and with stores throughout Asia like in Taiwan, China and Philippines. To commemorate the start of direct flights to Boston – also the birthplace of Mister Donut, JAL will serve exclusively on this flight, the AIR MISDO set which includes a chocolate-coated cinnamon ring and a maple-flavored ring of classic Mister Donut doughnuts, alongside a bowl of Boston’s signature clam chowder.

Additionally, just for customers on this route, JAL is bringing back Mister Donut’s popular [Boston 1955] – a delectable snack of ice cream sandwiched between chocolate chip cookies. [Boston 1955] was sold until 2003 and no longer available in stores.
[Boston 1955] will be served as desert for the first meal service shortly after departure while AIR MISDO will be served during the second meal service, for economy class customers onboard the nonstop flights from Tokyo (Narita) to Boston from the launch to the end of June, 2012. Both will also be available to Executive Class customers anytime during the flight as part of the “Anytime You Wish” service during this period.

AIR MISDO is a fourth installation in a series of tie ups with well-known food chains to present customers a refreshing line-up of in-flight meals. Going forward, JAL will continue striving to bring customers more delight in meal choices, hospitable services, and an enhanced onboard experience based on the principles of [Tradition], [Innovation] and the [Heart of Japan].

 

21.03.12 | JAL Announces Delivery Date of its First 787 Dreamliner, Reveals Cabin Interior

Japan Airlines (JAL) announced today that it will take delivery of its first Boeing 787-8 on March 25, 2012, and the aircraft (JA822J) will be flown from Seattle, Everett to Tokyo, Narita by JAL pilots the following day.

JAL 787 Press Releases   Mar 2012

Photos: The Boeing Company

JAL’s first commercial 787 flight will also be the first ever nonstop flight to connect Boston with Asia when JAL uses it to launch the new service between Tokyo (Narita) and Boston on April 22, 2012. JAL will later this year, also use this super-efficient aircraft to start yet another first nonstop service between a US city and Asia with the launch of direct flights between Tokyo (Narita) and San Diego. The 787 is scheduled to be deployed on routes between Tokyo and Beijing, Moscow, New Delhi and Singapore as soon as subsequent aircraft are delivered and all necessary preparations are completed.

Seat Configurations

JAL’s 787 Dreamliner is configured in two classes with 42 seats in business and 144 seats in economy. The airline will fit its newest Executive Class JAL SHELL FLAT NEO seats that are 5 cm (2 inches) wider (than the seats now fitted on JAL’s Boeing 777s), in a 2-2-2 configuration so that customers are either seated by the window or along the aisle. Lavatories in Executive Class also feature a special warm-water Toto Washlet*1 jointly developed by companies Toto, JAMCO and Boeing. The 144 Economy Class seats have 2 cm (0.8 inches) wider space than current seats and arranged in a 2-4-2 configuration.

Cabin Interior Highlights

In the design process of the 787 Dreamliner, JAL participated actively in the Boeing-led Working Together Team program that involved various airline customers brainstorming for enhanced passenger comfort and usability. JAL aimed to demonstrate hospitality from the heart in all customer-contact points in the cabin as well as the work space for cabin attendants such as the kitchen equipment in the galley. Some highlights of the revolutionary aircraft are:

JAL 787 Interior 1 Press Releases   Mar 2012

Executive Class: JAL SHELL FLAT NEO

JAL 787 Interior 2 Press Releases   Mar 2012

Economy Class

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • 30% larger windows than a Boeing 767 allow for more light into the cabin and a greater view of the outside even for passengers seated in the middle sections.
  • Electronically dimmable windows allow customers to adjust the amount of light entering the cabin, and it replaces conventional shades that either completely shut out or let in external light.
  • Taking advantage of the kaleidoscope of colors afforded by the new LED lights, JAL’s original onboard lighting design creates a soothing in-flight atmosphere that would evoke a sense of the four seasons in Japan, such as pink hues of cherry blossoms in spring. The lighting is also used to create a more conducive environment at the right timing for a sound slumber and a refreshed wakening, as well as to make in-flight meals more appetizing.
  • Higher ceilings and lower cabin pressure are subtle enhancements that make a noticeable difference to customer comfort, especially on long-haul flights. The ceiling of the 787 Dreamliner is approximately 14 cm (5.5 inches) higher than a Boeing 767 aircraft (comparing the height of the economy class section) while the maximum cabin altitude is also lower at 1,800 meters which reduces passenger fatigue.
  • A brand new type of in-flight entertainment will be introduced onboard JAL’s 787 Dreamliner, called SKY MANGA which reflects a distinctive part of the Japanese culture. There will be more than 30 titles of Japanese comics available in electronic versions on JAL’s in-flight entertainment system initially, with expansion to English versions planned for the near future.

For more information on JAL’s 787 Dreamliner, visit: http://www.jal.co.jp/en/787/.

 

20.03.12 | Deutsch Shows Successful Connection with Dassault

Specialist civil aerospace connector manufacturer Deutsch is delighted to announce that their MC6 optical connector has been specified for use in the Dassault Falcon 7X, the advanced, award-winning business jet. Deutsch will be showing the MC6 connector, along with its full range of aerospace interconnection solutions, at the Aircraft Interiors Exhibition 2012 (stand 6F20, 27-29 March 2012, Hamburg Messe, Germany).

Michael O’Farrell, Fibre Optic Product Manager for Deutsch UK, is particularly pleased to have the MC6 selected by Dassault, as he explains. “Dassault has an outstanding heritage in civil and military aircraft. Using their military aviation experience, technical know-how and design flair they’ve kept the Falcon 7X at the forefront of advanced technologies. Naturally, with this background, Dassault is particularly rigorous in specifying, testing and selecting every component that goes into their aircraft. We’ve worked closely with their engineers for some time to ensure that the Deutsch MC6 connector exactly meets their needs. Now, following an extensive test programme in line with Dassault’s requirements, we’re proud to say the MC6 has earned its place on board the aircraft,” he adds.

The MC6 is a ruggedised, high-density, fibre optic connector designed around an industry standard MT ferrule. It currently features 12 to 24 channels per connector, with a future potential of up to 72. Either flat ribbon or round cable can be specified – connectors can be supplied as components only, or pre-terminated onto harness assemblies as required.

The MC6 uses the compact MIL-C-38999 Series III, size 11 shell, which is based on the proven Deutsch MC5 fibre optic connector, and also features an alternative connector option in the DMC-M (EN 4165 / BACC65 / ARINC 809). Maintenance is easy due to the accessible end faces, and cleaning (blind if required) is enabled using a COTS cleaning tool.

The lightweight, corrosion resistant, metal-plated composite shell provides high strength and durability, combined with EMC shielding if required. This results in a very compact, rugged, environmentally sealed solution for a wide range of applications. These include military and civil avionics – data bus and in-flight entertainment systems – as well as ground vehicles.

The Aircraft Interiors Exhibition is the industry launch pad for cabin programmes, showcasing tomorrow’s designs, in-flight entertainment, connectivity and passenger services while offering visitors the ability to research and compare the world’s leading aircraft cabin solutions.

 

19.03.12 | ViaSat Fields Real-Time Network Management System for Military Airborne ISR

ViaSat Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT) has successfully fielded Satellite Access Manager (SAM), a new broadband satcom service manager for military airborne ISR (Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance) operations. SAM is providing U.S. forces throughout the Middle East with dramatically higher bandwidth utilization and efficiency, as well as higher data rates and increased signal-to-noise performance.

SAM is a real-time network monitoring system for ViaSat ArcLight® 2 mobile satellite broadband terminals. The system enables network managers to provision multiple remote users on an airborne network within a common bandwidth pool, and provides dynamic assignment of bandwidth and communications priority to high-value platforms as they begin missions. In addition, manual overrides can reassign satellite channels in real time to support changing mission requirements. SAM is primarily for DoD missions, which have very different requirements compared to commercial network customers who share capacity while using the ViaSat Yonder® global mobile service.

Airborne on-the-move (OTM) satellite communication faces challenges in providing adequate, dedicated bandwidth for ISR missions, including roaming across multiple beams, and using multiple satellite transponders – some with inclined orbits. SAM seamlessly supports the acquisition of discontinuous bandwidth in this dynamic environment.

“With SAM-enabled ViaSat mobile ArcLight 2 terminals, users can configure a fleet of aircraft to operate on the same network, yet consume bandwidth only for those aircraft flying at the same time,” said Larry Taylor, deputy general manager for ViaSat Global Mobile Broadband. “That can result in huge cost savings over systems that require allocation of satellite bandwidth for all aircraft in the fleet whether they fly or not.”

ViaSat mobile satellite terminals have added new modes of operation with SAM to enhance the broadband experience:

  • Point-to-point dedicated forward link (hub carrier) to the remote user, which can operate at data rates beyond 10 Mbps while the return link off the aircraft offers up to 10 Mbps
  • Continuous return link for streaming video data, which typically requires 25% less signal to noise ratio and delivers 20% more throughput than the standard burst mode
  • Industry-leading broadband performance in both Ku- and Ka-band with antennas as small as 12″ (30cm)

For general information on features, performance, pricing and availability contact Jeff Warner, ISR business director, at 619-787-0128.

 

19.03.12 | IFE Services moves UK headquarters to state-of-the art offices

IFE Services, a leading in-flight entertainment (IFE) provider, has moved into state-of-the art offices following a multi-million pound refurbishment of its studio complex.

The offices, which IFE Services moved into at the beginning of the year, will house the company’s entire UK head office team.

Commenting on the move, IFE Services’ CEO Andy McEwan, said, “We’ve made this considerable investment to ensure we continue providing the best possible in-flight entertainment services to our clients. The space has been specifically designed to allow departments to collaborate closely together when tailoring great value IFE packages from concept through to final delivery. The new facility will also allow our staff to flourish in a dynamic and uplifting working environment.”

IFE Services manages all aspects of an airline’s in-flight entertainment needs – sourcing and tailoring the best mix of movies, TV shows, audio and other content for the enjoyment of passengers. The company also provides original productions such as aircraft safety films, destination videos, entertainment guides and pre-recorded announcements (PRAMs), as well as technical consultancy for analogue and digital IFE systems.

For more information about IFE Services visit: www.ifeservices.com

 

13.03.12 | ORBIS Selects SIE for Engineering Design & Certification on Next Generation Flying Eye Hospital

Structural Integrity Engineering (SIE) has entered into an agreement with ORBIS, a non-profit humanitarian organization dedicated to saving sight worldwide, to provide engineering design and certification services for ORBIS’s next generation Flying Eye Hospital (FEH) based on an MD-10-30 aircraft generously donated by the FedEx Corporation. The next generation ORBIS MD-10-30 FEH, the world’s only ophthalmic surgical and training hospital with wings, will bring many advantages to the fight against preventable blindness.

“SIE is proud to be selected by ORBIS to help carry out its humanitarian mission” said Dr. Matt Creager, SIE’s president. “I believe we secured the confidence of ORBIS based on SIE’s strong reputation for engineering in structures, systems integration and our track record in delivering quality for our customers’ major aircraft modification programs.”

SIE will act as the engineering integrator, providing program management and supplier interface management, modification engineering and certification, and FAA STC certification. The work scope includes supply chain coordination with Mobile Medical International Corporation (MMIC), the mobile medical facilities provider, as well as numerous other cabin equipment suppliers.

“ORBIS is pleased to collaborate with SIE to help create the engineering for the next generation Flying Eye Hospital,” said Jack McHale, director of the MD-10 Project for ORBIS. “ORBIS has great respect for SIE’s technical capabilities and experience working on very large aircraft projects. The level of technical detail and integration creativity that SIE brings to the development of the project is unparalleled. “

 

13.03.12 | Virgin America selects AMP International

Virgin America has appointed AMP International (AMP), a division of the Post Modern Group, to provide content management services. Under the agreement, AMP will be responsible for coordination and delivery of all content on the Panasonic system.

Rick Warren, Managing Partner/CFO of the Post Modern Group, commented, “We’ve established a strong relationship with Virgin America through our existing media sales and technical services contracts. The award of this new contract to AMP is a natural extension of these services and we are delighted that Virgin America has once again selected AMP.

Alfy Veretto, Manager IFE Content & Partnerships at Virgin America, said, “the Post Modern Group is a valuable partner in our award winning inflight experience. As we prepare to launch our next generation IFE system, we needed a partner who could support the current day to day operations of providing content for our fleet. We are excited to have AMP’s support and look forward to new innovations our partnership brings.”

 

08.03.2012 | Corsairfly selects IFE Services as inflight entertainment provider

IFE Services today announced that it has been selected by Corsairfly as its inflight entertainment (IFE) provider.

The agreement means that IFE Services will provide the French airline with a regularly updated package of entertainment content for passengers to enjoy across the fleet’s digital AVOD (audio and video on demand), overhead and portable handheld systems.

The IFE content includes latest release and classic movies plus a broad selection of international TV programmes. All the entertainment content will be available in French and English. As well as managing content acquisition, IFE Services will take care of Corsairfly’s digital encoding and AVOD management requirements.

Corsairfly is France’s second largest airline and operates scheduled flights to the French West Indies, Reunion, Mauritius, Mayotte, Madagascar, Canada, Senegal and Miami.

“Corsairfly is an innovative and growing airline focused on providing the best possible passenger experience and exactly the kind of airline we love to support with great IFE,” said Andy McEwan, CEO of IFE Services. “We thoroughly enjoy working with their team and look forward to a long and productive partnership.”

“We are really pleased to be working closely with IFE Services to deliver a great entertainment experience to our passengers,” said Carla Scheuren, IFE Manager of Corsairfly. ”We have been particularly impressed by their professionalism and the wide choice of great value content they can provide.”

 

06.03.2012 | British Airways welcomes its first ever Heathrow operations apprentices

British Airways’ first ever Heathrow Operations apprentices launch their careers at the UK’s hub airport this month (March 2012).

The 15 new apprentices will get hands on experience of how British Airways combines to co-ordinate nearly 600 daily flights in and out of Heathrow alongside the airline’s 3,000 strong Operations team using the state-of-the-art facilities at Terminal 5.

The 18-month apprenticeship programme is designed to allow the apprentices to develop their skills in a range of ground handling roles.

The structured programme will cover how the airline manages its baggage handling, loading and ground transport operation for British Airways’ 90,000 customers flying daily at Heathrow.

The apprentices will also gain a Level Two Diploma and Certificate in Aviation Operations on the Ground during their apprenticeship.

The first of two annual intakes, the apprentices join the airline after successfully completing a dedicated 18-week British Airways Operations course at Kingston College.

Andy Lord, British Airways director of operations, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for the airline as well as the apprentices. Developing young talent allows British Airways to invest in its future and helps to ensure the highest levels of customer service and operational performance for years to come.”

The second intake of students have just started the 18-week British Airways Operations course, which includes two-weeks of work experience with British Airways at Heathrow, with a view to joining the main apprenticeship scheme in the summer.

 

05.03.2012 | British Airways engineering completes A380 trials

British Airways Engineering has successfully completed trials of its newly converted A380 facility at Heathrow. The final stage of testing was completed when Airbus flew in a ‘superjumbo’ to put the hangar through its paces.

The refurbishment to the four-hangar complex – a landmark 1950’s listed building – means the airline is ready to welcome the A380 to its engineering base.

Slotting the giant aircraft’s 24 metre high tail fin into the hangar was the biggest challenge to overcome. More than 138 tonnes of steelwork was added to the roof to create an ‘eyebrow’ for the tail to pass through.

The upgraded facility means that British Airways will be ready to maintain its fleet of A380 aircraft, due to begin arriving next year, as well as A380s for other carriers.

The new facilities also incorporate an innovative docking solution that can accommodate 10 wide-bodied aircraft types including the Airbus A380 and the Boeing 787 types.

Modifications on a second bay are due to begin in April 2012.

Garry Copeland, British Airways’ director of engineering, said: “The trial was a great success and a huge step in preparing our engineering base for the future”.

“Our engineers can’t wait for the A380 to join our fleet, and they now have a state of the art facility in which to maintain it.”

 

01.03.2012 | IFE Services showcases in-flight entertainment solutions at Aviation Outlook MENA

In-flight entertainmentspecialist, IFE Services, will be showcasing its range of in-flight entertainment solutions at Aviation Outlook MENA in Dubai next month.

Taking place between the 19th and 21st March, this is the only CEO-level aviation conference in the region. It will address the challenges of the current operating environment and strive to find innovative answers to drive growth and expansion with optimised route scheduling and the latest distribution and revenue management strategies.

Leading content service provider, IFE Services, has a booth at the event with experts in attendance to discuss cost-effective in-flight entertainment strategies with airline delegates. Serving over 40 airline clients globally, the company is ideally placed to advise on and deliver innovative movie, TV and audio packages for embedded and wireless systems as well as original productions such as safety films, entertainment guides and GUI design. The company also offers a choice of portable, handheld solutions including the PSP, iPad and other tablet devices.

“Many Middle Eastern airlines set the standard for the passenger experience and in-flight entertainment plays an important role in this,” said Andy McEwan, IFE Services’ CEO. “This is a key region for us and we can’t wait to meet up with so many innovative, forward-thinking airlines keen to provide the best possible IFE experience to their customers.”

 

01.03.2012 | JAL and Yoshinoya to Serve Traditional Beef Bowls on Select International Routes

Japan Airlines (JAL) is collaborating with Yoshinoya Holdings – the largest chain of beef-bowl restaurants, to bring its trademark dish to customers on select international flights from today, March 1, 2012. For three months until May 31, 2012, customers traveling with JAL from Tokyo to New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, London and Frankfurt in every cabin class will be able to enjoy Air Yoshinoya – the JAL Original version of the establishment’s specialty beef-bowl.

Founded in Tokyo in 1899, Yoshinoya has grown to become a popular Japanese food chain that also has an extensive global presence. With Air Yoshinoya, customers will be delighted at the familiar taste of the well-loved beef bowl at several thousand meters in the air. Specially designed and packaged to be served onboard, the Air Yoshinoya box separates the beef from the rice until customers are ready to enjoy it.

Considering the lower humidity in the cabin, Air Yoshinoya also comes with more sauce so that customers taste the same succulence as the beef bowl served in shops. Air Yoshinoya packaging and tray mats are original designs for this in-flight service while the beef, ginger, shichimi (seven-flavored spice) and pickles served are just as customers would find in all Yoshinoya outlets in Japan.
Air Yoshinoya will be served to customers in Premium Economy and Economy cabins as a second meal before arrival at their destinations, and included as an option in a menu of a la carte dishes available any time after the first meal service in First and Executive Class.

JAL’s Air Yoshinoya is third in a series of tie ups with well-known eateries to present customers a refreshing line-up of in-flight meals. Going forward, JAL will continue striving to bring customers more delight in meal choices, hospitable services, and an enhanced onboard experience based on the principles of [Tradition], [Innovation] and the [Heart of Japan].

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