It has been a busy week for the B737 MAX project 

Boeing has succeeded in three very important achievements for the B737 MAX project this week: the rollout of the first B737 MAX 9, the unveiling of the 737 MAX 10 and the certification of the B737 MAX 8.

The rollout of the first 737 MAX 8

On March 7th, Boeing has rolled out the first 737 MAX 9 in front of thousands of Boeing employees.

The 737 MAX 9 will soon begin system checks, fueling and engine runs on the flight line at Everett Paine Field. Once all these tests will be completed, in the coming weeks the airplane will start its flight testing campaign.

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“The 737 MAX team continues to do a fantastic job getting us to these important milestones right on schedule,” said Keith Leverkuhn, vice president and general manager of the 737 MAX program, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “Our primary focus is delivering an aircraft that has the legendary reliability our 737 customers depend on, plus the optimized flexibility and range capability they desire.”
The 737 MAX 9 is scheduled to enter service in 2018.

The unveiling of the 737 MAX 10X

Boeing has also unveiled the first image of the proposed 737 MAX 10X on March 6th at the ISTAT Americas convention in San Diego.

The 43.8m (143.7ft)-long 737 Max 10X was revealed as a relatively straightforward, 1.68m stretch of the 737 Max 9, featuring the latter’s distinctive mid-aft exit door and no other obvious differences besides length. Boeing is continuing to evaluate several options to extend the rotation point of the landing gear, allowing more flexibility on take-offs despite the longer fuselage.

Tinseth argues the 737 Max 10X will offer the same capacity as the slightly longer Airbus A321neo, but with lower fuel consumption and slightly greater range.

Boeing could formally launch the 737 Max 10X later this year, becoming the fourth member of the re-engined 737 family, Tinseth says.

The certification of the MAX 8

Boeing on March 9th has announced the 737 MAX 8 has been officially certified for commercial by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Boeing is now in the final stages of preparing the first MAX 8 delivery in the coming months.

To earn certification for the 737 MAX 8, Boeing undertook a comprehensive test program that began just over one year ago with four airplanes, plus ground and laboratory testing. Following a rigorous certification process, the FAA granted Boeing an Amended Type Certificate for the 737 MAX 8, verifying the design complies with required aviation regulations and is safe and reliable.

“This certification is a true testament to the dedication and commitment of our entire MAX team throughout the process, from airplane design to flight testing,” said Keith Leverkuhn, vice president and general manager, 737 MAX program, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “The Renton team looks forward to delivering superior efficiency, reliability and design to our customers as they start to receive their 737 MAX aircraft in the next few months.”

Aer Lingus to lease seven A321neos

Image copyright: Airbus

Aer Lingus has outlined its transatlantic fleet renewal plans by planning to lease seven new A321neoLR from Air Lease Corporation. The aircraft will be delivered starting in the second quarter of 2019 with two to come later that year, an additional two in 2019 and four in 2020. The new aircraft will be used to replace their leased fleet of 4 Boeing 757s and eventually introduce new routes and frequencies to US and Canadian cities.

Norwegian announces new transatlantic routes from Bergen

Boeing 737 max norwegian
Render by Boeing

Norwegian’s transatlantic growth continues after Norwegian announced two new routes from the Norwegian city of Bergen today. Like the recently announced routes from the UK and Ireland to the East Coast, the new routes will also be operated with their Boeing 737 MAXs

The airline will serve Stewart Airport in New York and Providence Airport near Boston. So far Bergen is the only Scandinavian city to receive transatlantic routes with the upgraded 737 version. The airline now offers 50 routes between Europe and the US.

Both routes will be served twice a week. Flights to Stewart and Providence will launch on July 3. an 2. respectively.


Scandinavian Airlines releases Irish subsidiary plans


SAS announced earlier that the airline will set up an Irish subsidiary to lower its cost base and to become more competitive in the market to regain lost market share from LCCs like Norwegian.

The new airline, SAS Scandinavian Airlines Ireland, is currently looking at getting an Air Operators Certificate from Ireland. They hope for the new company to be running by November 1st. The airline will wet-lease nine A320neo from its parent company while operating on behalf of it.

The airline’s first route will be from London Heathrow to Scandinavia, and will look into getting leisure flights from Spain in the near future. The new base will employ around forty staff to begin with.



Kuwait Airways plans major expansion in 2017

Isaac Shenoy @flightpath_aviation

Kuwait Airways will be going through a major expansion in 2017 as new aircraft will join the carriers fleet. The aircraft will be increasing frequencies on the majority of the carriers routes. Information below was sourced from here.

DAC – frequencies increased from daily to 12 weekly effective 15JUL using a B77W exclusively

CMB – frequencies increased from daily to 10 weekly nonstop flights using an A332

DEL – frequencies increased from 12 weekly to double daily

MAA – frequencies increased from 4 to 5 weekly flights using an A332

JFK – frequencies increased from 6 weekly to daily flights using a B77W

LHR – capacity increased with all ten weekly flights exclusively operated by the B77W

FRA – capacity increased from 4 weekly A332s to 4 weekly B77Ws

FCO – frequencies increased from 3 to 4 weekly nonstop flights using an A320

IST – frequencies increased from 9 to 12 weekly nonstop flights i.e. 2 weekly A332s + 10 weekly A320s

AMM – frequencies increased from 13 weekly to double daily

BEY – frequencies increased from daily to 12 weekly

IKA – frequencies increased from 4 to 5 weekly flights

MHD – frequencies increased from 2 to 3 weekly

NJF – frequencies increased from 2 to 3 weekly

BAH – frequencies increased from 8 weekly to double daily

DXB – frequencies increased from 18 to 25 weekly

LHE – frequencies increased from 3 to 4 weekly

KHI – new 4 weekly nonstop flights to be launched with an A320

COK – capacity adjusted to daily A332 + 3 weekly A320s

MNL – capacity increased effective 15AUG from daily B772 to daily B77WB77W

BKK – capacity increased from daily A332 to daily


In total, KU will be operating an additional 36 flights per week in S17 season versus W16.

Oman Air adds first 787-9

On February 24th, Oman Air took delivery of their very first 787-9. In addition to the additional three 789s arriving between 2018 and 2020, the airline already operates four 787-8. The aircraft is equipped with a two class configuration with 288 seats.

The aircraft will be used on their daily flights between Muscat and Bangkok from March 1.

Air New Zealand to retire the 767 by March

Copyright: Darren Koch

Air New Zealand has planned to retire its two remaining 767-300ERs (ZK-NCG and ZK-NCI) from the fleet by March this year. According to ch-aviation, the two aircraft are on average twenty-three years old. Currently the aircraft are used on flights between Auckland and Melbourne, Rarotonga and Sydney.

Of the grand total of 5 767-300ERs the airline has operated at its peak, two of its earlier retired 767-300ER jets have entered service at Icelandair, while the remaining jet is stored in Alice Springs.


airBaltic to launch long-haul CSeries flights


airBaltic will deploy the CSeries on its first long-haul route. The aircraft will be used to serve Abu Dhabi four times a week from the Latvian capital Riga, in cooperation with Etihad. The airline received its first CS300 in November, which was introduced on the Riga-Amsterdam sector in December. Service will commence on October 29, 2017.

“We are delighted to link Latvia and the UAE with our brand-new Bombardier CS300 that fly longer distances and reach airports that we were not able to serve with our fleet before. Our codeshare cooperation with Etihad Airways will offer convenient connections to passengers traveling from the Baltic airports to the UAE capital Abu Dhabi and further to key destinations in Australia, Asia, Africa and the Middle East, as well as provide new traveling opportunities from Abu Dhabi to European and Scandinavian airports” says AirBaltic CEO Martin Gauss.

The airline previously served the UAE capital in cooperation with Etihad a few years ago using the Airbus A319.




United announces second international 777-300ER route

United 77W 777-300ER
© Joe G. Walker

United, currently the newest Boeing 777-300ER operator, has filed its second international route that will utilize the new aircraft. The aircraft currently flies between Newark and San Francisco until May 4th and the type will also replace the 747 on the San Francisco – Hong Kong route from March 25th.

The aircraft type will now be used on one of the two daily flights to Tel Aviv, replacing the 777-200ER starting May 5th.

From airlineroute:

UA084 EWR1640 – 1015+1TLV 777 D
UA090 EWR2245 – 1620+1TLV 77W D

UA085 TLV1215 – 1710EWR 777 D
UA091 TLV2310 – 0415+1EWR 77W D