Boeing 767 tanker, refueling two F/A-18's
The United States Air Force has announced today that they have granted the tanker contract to Boeing and their 767 aircraft, which will be called the KC-46A. The Air Force is asking Boeing to deliver the first 18 aircraft by 2017.
This has been a heated battle between Boeing and EADS (the parent company of Airbus) for the contract worth $35billion dollars and 179 airplanes. Currently the Air Force has about 400 KC-135s currently used as tankers.Back in 2008, the Air Force initially gave the deal to EADS and their partner at the time Northrop Grumman. Since there were complaints about the bidding process, the whole process had to be started over again.
The Boeing 767 will be built in Everett, WA and modified for tanker duty in Wichita, KA. Washington representative Norm Dicks told Glenn Farely of KING5, “I am so excited that we finally won this after three go-arounds. It’s just the most important victory for Boeing, for the workers of our state.”
Although the decision has been made, it can still be appealed. At this point, I hope it does not get appealed so our troops can start getting new aircraft.
It took 9,500 flowers to make this lei for the Hawaiian Airlines A330
Last week I showed a photo of Hawaiian Airline’s brand spanking new Airbus A330 and it had a fancy lei on it. I asked how many flowers do you think it took to make the lei?
Via the comments and people emailing me I received over 60 guesses. They ranged from 330 to 330,200 (both guesses a play off the being an A330, I am guessing) The answer? According to Hawaiian Airlines it took 9,500 dendrobium orchids to make the lei on the Airbus A330. Now that is a lot of flowers.
And who was closest? David Brown. Seriously. But it isn’t me, it is another David Brown (there are a lot of us out there and he has an aviation blog too).Â Mr. Brown guessed 9855 flowers, which was closest to 9500. I will be mailing him his prizes. Thank you all for participating!
On June 4th the A330 had its maiden flight from Honolulu to LosÂ Angeles. This is the first of 27 new A330s and A350s that Hawaiian plans to introduce into its fleet over the coming decade. Check out this photo of the A330 being pushed back from its gate at Honolulu.
Hawiian Airlines brand new Airbus A330 next to their first plane, a 1929 Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker
GUESSING HAS BEEN CLOSED. I WILL POST THE ANSWERS TOMORROW (JUNE 8th) MORNING. I have locked it down so no more comments can be made.
Hawaiian Airlines is making a big change. They are adding an Airbus A330 to their fleet. On Friday June 4th the first passenger flight from Honolulu to Los AngelesÂ will commence, starting a new era.
The new A330 is named Â Makaliâ€˜i for the constellation Pleiades that helped guide ancient Polynesian voyagers across the Pacific.
This is one amazing photo and quite a few things are impressive. What got my attention (besides the fact this is Hawaiian’s newest and oldest aircraft together), is the Airbus A330 has a lei on it.
See it? Those purple/pink flowers right behind the cockpit? Â I wrote to Hawaiian PR guy Patrick Dugan and asked, “How many flowers does it take to lei an Airbus A330?” Guess what he told me? No, seriously guess…
CONTEST: How many flowers (they are dendrobium orchids, if that matters) did it take to create the lei (just the lei on the A330, not the stairs or other flowers) seen in the photoÂ (bigger version) on the Hawaiian Airlines Airbus A330?
The closest person(s) to the correct answer will win a prize (I have a few you can choose from).Â You can leave a comment or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org (don’t worry I am not collecting emails in any fashion). I will give you until Monday June 7th at 5pm PST, then I will give the answer and announce the winner(s)!
Hint? It is a lot more than you think…
Air India Airbus A330
Habib Hussain moved to Medina, Saudi Arabia six months ago to get a job providing airline services through a private agency. Hussien was working aboard an Air India Airbus A330 prepping to head toÂ Jaipur, India.Â He was not happy with his current situation and wanted to go home, however the company he worked for had his passport. He decided to lock himself in the bathroom and catch a free and illegal flight back home.
About 30 minutes into the flight he came out of the bathroom and sat down in a vacant seat. On a normal flight he might have been able to blend in, but this was a special Haj flight and he stood out in his overalls. Once he was detected he was frisked by airline personal and found not be a safety threat. The pilot decided to continue on to their final destination, however officials were waiting for Hussain once the plane landed.
Every international flight is supposed to thoroughly checked the aircraft and complete a headcount. Air India has stated it is not a common practice to check for stowaways.
“Only authorized personnel enter an aircraft for maintenance after clearing security checks in the sterile airport zone. Pilots announce before takeoff that all ground personnel must deplane. There is no practice of checking toilets or under seats to look for hidden passengers. The boarding card stub taken from passengers at the aircraft ladder is used to do a headcount with people seated inside. This is what airlines do,” said Air India spokesman Jitendra Bhargava.
Hussain was checked by security to be able to work on the aircraft. It is most likely Hussain will stay in India, but might face charges for his bathroom stunt.
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Source: The Times of India Image: Magnum78 fr via Flickr
Photo of the downed aircraft taken October 2007 A330-203 AIR FRANCE F-GZCP
Flight 447, carrying 216 passengers and 12 crew members was scheduled to arrive at Charles-de-Gaulle (Paris) early Monday morning.Â The Airbus A330-200 disappeared from Brazillian radar about 3 hours after take-off.Â Brazillian Air Force has been searching near the coast of West Africa.
Before losing contact with Air France, Flight 447 sent an automatic message indicating an electrical problem.Â An Air France spokesperson suggested it was possible that the plane was hit by lightning, though aviation experts are skeptical that the Airbus wouldn’t have been able to withstand lightning.
It will be a long, sad search for the black box, and until then, the true cause of this unfortunate occurrence will remain unknown.
Sources: NPR, BBCÂ Image: phinalanji