Silk Avia introduces first ATR aircraft in Uzbekistan

By Featured, Regional Turboprops

New regional airline, Silk Avia, has signed a Heads of Agreement (HOA) with ATR for the acquisition of five new ATR 72-600 aircraft. Three of these will come from ATR directly, whilst two will be delivered via a lessor.

The airline is expected to begin operations soon with three used ATR 72-600 aircraft already in its possession.

Silk Avia and ATR also announced the signing of a five-year Global Maintenance Agreement. This pay-by-the-hour contract will allow the Uzbekistanian regioanl airline to take full advantage of ATR’s expertise to support its ATR aircraft, reducing maintenance costs and boosting operations.

ATR Chief Executive Officer, Nathalie Tarnaud Laude, comments: “There is no better solution to provide essential links than an ATR 72-600, the sustainable benchmark in regional aviation today. In a fast-growing country such as Uzbekistan, Silk Avia will play a key role by offering vital links for local communities and boosting the economy.

“We warmly welcome Silk Avia as one of our newest customers, opening a new market for ATR in Central Asia.”

Rano Dzhuraeva, Chair of Uzbekistan Airports, says: “We are excited to be soon launching our operations with an all-ATR fleet. As a new low-cost airline, we undertook an extensive review of which aircraft would provide the best solution. Our selection of the ATR 72-600 is the perfect choice for us as they will ensure we can offer our passengers the most modern, comfortable and reliable experience in the most affordable and sustainable way.”

Deutsche Aircraft announces further key suppliers on road to D328eco programme launch

By Featured, Regional Turboprops

Announced at this year’s Aircraft Supplier Summit, Deutsche Aircraft has selected a number of further key suppliers to develop its D328eco programme.

Based on their time-to-market capabilities, supply chain resilience, sustainability across the life-cycle of the product and economic reality, these include Bucher Leichtbau AG, Elbe Flugzeugwerke and Reiser Simulation and Training.

Deutsche Aircraft has selected Bucher Leichtbau AG for the galley and partitions for the D328eco cabin, Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW) will supply the floor panels for the D328eco fuselage, which will be designed by Deutsche Aircraft, and Reiser Simulation and Training GmbH [Reiser] will develop and provide the D328eco Engineering Cockpit Simulator, a fully instrumented flight deck connected to a high-fidelity aircraft simulation.

On the Bucher partnership, a Deutsche Aircraft spokesperson commented: “Since the beginning of discussions, Bucher has shown a clear understanding of our requirements. Their decades-long know-how regarding cabin interior monuments and lightweight construction whilst being open-minded regarding innovation and the brilliant finishing quality on the product makes them the perfect partner for the galley and partitions for the D328eco.” 

ATR secures Chinese certification approval and firm order

By Featured, Regional Turboprops

The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) has provided validation of the type certificate for the ATR 42-600. ATR have also received a firm order for three ATR 42-600 aircraft from an undisclosed customer. 

This achievement presents ATR with the opportunity to re-enter the Chinese market. The ATR 42-600 is an ideal route opener for China, a vast country looking to grow essential connections profitably and responsibly.

Nathalie Tarnaud Laude, ATR’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “Receiving CAAC’s validation of the ATR 42-600 type certificate, along with a firm order, is a major achievement marking the re-introduction of ATR turboprops in China.”

“The ATR 42-600 will undoubtedly prove to be a game-changer. ATR offers an eco-responsible alternative to jets while bringing comfort and convenience to passengers, and essential air services for communities and businesses to thrive.”

Fabrice Vautier, ATR’s Senior Vice-President Commercial added: “By 2035, we anticipate that over 150 airports will be built in China and turboprops will play a key role in creating a new network of short, thin routes, complementing the high-speed train offering.”

“Our 20-year forecast predicts a need for 280 new turboprops in the region, and ATR is perfectly placed to meet this demand, whilst also contributing to decrease the reliance on public subsidies and delivering reduced CO2 emissions.”

Air Cairo optimises reintroduction of ATR aircraft in Egypt

By Featured, MRO, Regional Turboprops

ATR and Air Cairo have signed a Global Maintenance Agreement at MRO Europe 2022.

Through this 5 year agreement, Air Cairo will benefit from repair, overhaul, and pooling services of Line Replaceable Units for its fleet of ATR-72-600s, which are currently being delivered.

With over 200 weekly flights to 35 international destinations, Air Cairo offers vital connectivity for local communities and tourists.

Mr Hussein Sherif, Chief Executive Officer at Air Cairo, said: “Being profitable in a low-fare environment is a day-to-day challenge, the key of which is not only to have the right aircraft, but also to make the most of them. As we are reintroducing the ATR platform in Egypt after 15 years, we want to ensure we can offer our passengers the most modern, comfortable and reliable experience. Our choice of the aircraft type will assist on the former two points, while the ATR GMA will support our effort to deliver the latter to our passengers.”

David Brigante, Senior Vice-President Customer Support and Services at ATR said: “This contributes to making regional air transport even more reliable, accessible and sustainable. We will be offering Air Cairo our expertise to ensure it can make the most of its ATR fleet, as we well know that even the most efficient aircraft is only valuable when it is flying.”

Heart Aerospace and Sevenair sign 35 LOI for up to six ES-30s

By Featured, Regional Turboprops, Sustainability

Heart Aerospace and Portuguese airline Sevenair have signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) for the purchase of three electric ES-30s with an option for an additional three.

Sevenair is a regional airline specialized in public transport and wet lease contracts. It currently operates seven routes in Portugal, all of which can be covered by the ES-30’s.

“Heart Aerospace presented itself to us as a start-up company that combined a strong financial backup with an experienced team and strong industry partners. As members of the Airline Advisory Board we are proud to assist this amazing group in the development of an aircraft that will completely disrupt regional flights,” said Carlos Amaro, Chief Executive of Sevenair.

“With the ES-30, we have designed an airplane that can start cutting emissions from regional air travel before the end of this decade and it is progressive airlines such as Sevenair that make it a reality. We couldn’t be happier to have them as a partner, ” said Anders Forslund, CEO of Heart Aerospace.

With this latest expression of interest, Heart Aerospace now has a total of 230 orders and 100 options for the ES-30, along with LOIs for a further 99 airplanes.

Toki Air takes delivery of an ATR 72-600

By Featured, Regional Turboprops

Toki Air, a new Japanese regional airline, has taken delivery of an ATR 72-600. 

Covered by a ten-year ATR Global Maintenance Agreement, the aircraft will support Toki Air’s mission of revitalising Niigata city and the surrounding regions of Japan. The carrier plans to start operations in 2023.

The fourth airline to operate ATR’s in Japan, the airline’s livery depicts the spread wings of the ancestral bird – a symbol of the preservation of nature in Japan. It also represents the airline’s commitment to connecting areas that coexist with nature, operating the lowest CO2 emissions and most fuel-efficient aircraft.

Masaki Hasegawa, Representative Director of Toki Air, commented: “We are pleased to start operating our ATR 72-600 aircraft soon. Thanks to their unrivalled versatility and responsible and affordable performance, ATR aircraft are the ideal choice for us as an airline and for our country. This first aircraft will allow us to serve our higher purpose by providing a responsible and reliable air connection to the communities of the Niigata Prefecture and surrounding regions. We look forward to seeing Toki flying in the skies of Japan.”

ATR Chief Executive Officer, Nathalie Tarnaud Laude, added: “Our long-term relationship with NAC and the confidence of the lessors’ community in our aircraft allow new airlines such as Toki Air to offer their passengers the most modern and sustainable aircraft on the regional market. The support we will be able to provide through the ATR Global Maintenance Agreement will also ensure the most reliable and efficient services.”

Pratt & Whitney Canada certifies PW127XT-M Regional Turboprop Engine

By Featured, Regional Turboprops

Pratt & Whitney Canada has disclosed that Transport Canada Civil Aviation has type certified the PW127XT-M regional turboprop engine that will power new builds of ATR aircraft.

Previously revealed at the Dubai Airshow in November 2021, the PW127XT-M offers massive improvements to the sustainability of aircraft: 40% more time on wing, 20% lower maintenance costs, and 3% improvements in fuel efficiency.

“The PW127XT-M engine is the new standard for operating economics, maintenance and sustainability for regional aircraft,” said Timothy Swail, vice president, Regional Aviation and APU Product Marketing & Sales for Pratt & Whitney Canada. “This certification is an important step toward the entry into service of new ATR aircraft and we continue to support ATR as it builds a strong order book.”

In June, Pratt & Whitney Canada announced that Deutsche Aircraft had selected the PW127XT engine to power the new D328eco. The selected engine model – the PW127XT-S – will be developed according to the D328eco timeline.

Silver Airways

Silver Airways rejoins RAA

By Featured, Regional Turboprops

The Regional Airline Association (RAA) welcomes the return of Silver Airways to the Association, bringing the membership total to 18 airlines.“We welcome back Silver Airways and its colorful aircraft to the Association, and look forward to working with its leaders on range of issues impacting regional airlines and the communities they serve,” said RAA CEO Faye Malarkey Black.“RAA is fiercely committed to the future of regional air service and has an even stronger voice with Silver on board. We look forward to welcoming Silver’s safety and business leaders to our events, conferences, and purchasing forums.”“We are excited to announce that Silver Airways will be rejoining the Regional Airline Association. RAA provides an important voice of advocacy for leading passenger and cargo regional airlines such as Silver that provide safe, reliable, and necessary air transportation,” said Silver Airways CEO Steven Rossum.Silver, based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, provides important air service to military, leisure and business travelers throughout the Southeast and Caribbean from gateways in Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Silver is the U.S. launch operator of the fuel efficient and environmentally friendly ATR-600 series turboprop aircraft and operates both ATR-42-600 and ATR-72-600 aircraft as well as Saab 340B aircraft.

Silver Airways

FIA2022: ATR finalises sale of ATR 72-600 to Afrijet

By Featured, FIA2022, Regional Turboprops

Afrijet is set to add another ATR 72-600 to its fleet, as ATR finalises the sale of another aircraft to be delivered at the end of the year. This order will bring the Central African airline’s fleet size to six ATR 72-600 by 2023.

The airline initially started with pre-owned ATRs and started to lease the type in 2020. Utilising these aircraft, Afrijet can benefit from the regional turboprop manufacturer’s effectiveness in growing regional networks.

Afrijet CEO, Marc Gaffajoli, says: “Regional connectivity has a significant impact on local economies and community integration. To be effective in Africa an aircraft has to be cost-efficient, reliable and versatile. Moreover, the unique terrain in which Afrijet operates, comprising of the Congo rainforest – the world’s second largest tropical forest after the Amazon – makes an even stronger reason to select the most responsible aircraft on the market for such essential connections.”

Fabrice Vautier, ATR Senior Vice President Commercial, says:  “Most traffic in Africa is concentrated on a few well served routes and there is a real need to connect secondary cities. Afrijet is able to do just that, providing a reliable and comfortable service to local communities.  Accelerating the transition of its fleet to purchase the latest generation of ATR aircraft, is a clear demonstration of Afrijet’s strong business strategy and commitment to sustainable aviation”.

FIA2022: Deutsche Aircraft selects Aciturri as reference supplier for the D328eco

By Featured, FIA2022, Regional Turboprops

Deutsche Aircraft and Aciturri announced the appointment of Aciturri Aerostructures as a reference supplier for selected composite technologies for the D328eco aircraft. The contract stipulates that Aciturri will manufacture the fairings, landing gear doors and flight control movables, using composite and metallic technologies. Aciturri will also ensure the assembly of the components for integration on the final assembly line.

Both companies are working closely together, and the first prototype of the aircraft is aiming to be delivered in 2024, with subsequent prototypes planned for 2025. Aciturri’s expertise and experience as a TIER1 aerostructures manufacturer is an important part in the development of the D328eco regional and special mission turboprop aircraft.

Dave Jackson, CEO of Deutsche Aircraft says: “Aciturri’s existing engineering and sustainability capabilities fully allow Deutsche Aircraft to meet time-to-market objectives of the D328eco. We take pride in sharing the same vision on sustainability in our industry and are leading the way today to further develop innovative concepts.”

Álvaro Fernández Baragaño, CEO of Aciturri says: “Participating in the D328eco project is an excellent opportunity to bring our technological and industrial experience and capabilities to the development of a modern and sustainable aircraft. I am confident that this is just the first step on a long road of common collaboration of Deutsche Aircraft and Aciturri.”