Wednesday, December 30, 2015

AirwaysNews’ 2015 Top 10 Stories

By: Staff / Published: December 30, 2015

There were many firsts, lasts, ups, and downs in the airline industry in 2015. It was a memorable year for various reasons, and we had a lot of fun writing about everything that went on this year. We appreciate you reading our stories so in our last regularly scheduled post for 2015, we take a look at the top 10 stories of 2015 based on our Google Analytics.

10: How Much of a Game Changer is the 787 

To kick off our top 10 stories of 2015 we start it with this question: how much of a game changer is the Boeing 787 Dreamliner? This is a valid question to ask especially since the 787 Dreamliner had a fairly good year with a fair amount of orders and deliveries occurring. Boeing's lead salesman, Rand Tinseth, was speaking at an event where he dredged up all of the same old debates about the 787 versus the Airbus A380, and about whether the 787 is truly revolutionary. Senior Business Analyst, Vinay Bhaskara, examines how much of a game changer the 787 actually is.

787 Factory December 2013 K66032-01

9: American Airlines 2015 Fleet Plan

2015 was a pivotal year for American as it continued its merger with US Airways. In 2015's ninth most popular story, we take examine American's 2015 fleet plan which includes information ranging from interior modifications to new aircraft to the retirement of older aircraft.



8: American's First 787 Dreamliner Takes Flight 

On January 6, 2015, American's first Boeing 787 Dreamliner took to the skies for the first time over Everett, Washington. A few weeks later, American took delivery of its first 787 which made it the second U.S. airline to own one. Over the course of three months, the Dallas/Ft. Worth based airline put its Dreamliners through a rigorous entry-into-service program so it could begin operating passenger flights domestically on May 7 without any hiccups.


AA 787

7: A Look at the Remaining 747-8 Orders

In April 2015, Lufthansa took delivery of the final Boeing 747-8 it had on order which meant that Boeing only had less than three dozen left to deliver to customers. We take a look back at the rocky road Boeing has had with the 747-8 variant as well as the other 747-8 customers. Unfortunately, the program continues to struggle as Boeing has yet to see any new orders for the 747-8 in quite a while which could mean that the end of 747 production is near.


6: Boeing Introduces Its First 737 MAX 

In early December, Boeing introduced its 737 MAX which is the very first of the fourth generation of its 737.  With more than 2,900 orders from 60 customers as of press time, the 737 throughout its history is the world's best-selling commercial aircraft. The aircraft that rolled out is the first of four that will be used for flight testing to receive all of the certification it needs before the first one will be handed over to Southwest in the third quarter of 2017. As of now, Boeing expects the first 737 MAX to take to the skies sometime in early 2016.

Photo Credits: Boeing


5: The Wings of Man Unfolds its Wings: Eastern Air Lines Returned Thursday with Flights To Cuba 

With just a week's notice, Eastern Air Lines announced that it would begin flights between the U.S. and Cuba as it signed an agreement to support HavanaAir's charter operations to Cuba in and out of Miami, and the carrier wasted no time commencing operations between the two countries. In this story, we sat down with Eastern CEO, Edward J. Wegel, talking to him about everything from the FAA certification process to flight crew training to what the future of Eastern might entail.

Eastern Boeing 737-800 at Havana-7 2015

4: Which of American's Nine Hubs are on the Chopping Block 

Although a majority portion of the American and US Airways merger is now over, American Airlines will undoubtedly keep evolving somewhat over the next several years as it continues to blend the two brands which includes cross-fleeting as well as right-sizing its presence at airports.If history repeats itself, it seems somewhat likely that one of American's nine hubs could see some cuts in the future so which of the nine hubs are on the chopping block?

Boeing 757-200 - American Airlines

3: United Airlines 2016 Fleet Plan

In 2015, United made great strides in expanding WiFi to the majority of its fleet as well as continued to install its new slimline seats on both its mainline and regional aircraft. Meanwhile, United unveiled a new domestic first class seat that it has just started installing on its A319s and A320s. 2016 will be another big year of changes to the fleet; the airline will take delivery of the final 737-900ERs it has on order. And it will take delivery of its first 777-300ER and more 787 Dreamliners. Plus, United will begin taking delivery of some used A319 aircraft to add to its fleet.



2: Inside the World's Largest Airline Owned Maintenance Base: American Airlines Tulsa 


AirwaysNews was granted unprecedented access into American's Tulsa Maintenance base which is the world's largest airline owned maintenance base. Spread across 33 acres that encompasses 22 buildings and 3.3 million square feet of hanger and shop space, thousands of American employees go to work everyday to fix everything from your seat-back tray table to the lavatory sink to repairing the tires as well as complete the heavy-C checks. It is definitely worth a read to see how Tulsa's airport has become an aviation and economic powerhouse as the United States' largest airline services hundreds of its aluminum hulks here each year.

Winglets for the entire AA 737 fleet were added at Tulsa

1: Op-Ed: Responsible Journalism and the Air Crash Du Jour 

For our number one story of 2015,  Captain Eric Auxier's Op-Ed stole the show. The 20 year A320 veteran pilot discuses how the media does not always report the "news" in lots of aviation stories, which was especially prevalent during the coverage of Germanwings 9525. Captain Auxier breaks down media coverage of aviation accidents and explains why it is not a good idea to speculate or report unconfirmed facts.

1009_Eric Auxier P1505_036


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The post AirwaysNews' 2015 Top 10 Stories appeared first on Airchive.

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