Tag Archives: Lufthansa Technik

Lufthansa reaches the 100th Airbus A320 Family aircraft milestone with its voluntary sound-reducing vortex generators

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) has issued this statement about reaching the 100th aircraft in its noise reduction program:

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Experts from Lufthansa Technik will be equipping the 100th aircraft of the Lufthansa A320 fleet with sound-reducing vortex generators (below) in the next few weeks. The Lufthansa Group and German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt, DLR) project is part of the research group “Quieter Transport” (“Leiser Verkehr”), has thus reached an important milestone. Since November 2014, Lufthansa has equipped its short and medium-haul aircraft of the types Airbus A319, A320 und A321 with the noise-reducing components on the underside of the wings.

Lufthansa sound-reducing vortex generators

Photo Above: Lufthansa. The vortex generators being installed on the LH Airbus A320 Family fleet.


It is the first airline in the world to do so.

In total, 157 aircraft in the short and medium-haul fleet are being equipped with a vortex generator. Newly built Airbus aircraft have already been delivered to Lufthansa with the sound-reducing technology since the beginning of 2014. More than 200 Lufthansa jets will fly much more quietly in future.

Flyover measurements taken by Lufthansa in cooperation with the DLR show vortex generators remove annoying tones and significantly reduce the overall noise level of the aircraft when landing – by up to four decibels at distances of between ten and 17 kilometers away from the airport.

According to information from the manufacturer, this effect is even greater further away from the airport. These tones were previously created by airflows over circular pressure equalisation vents for the fuel tanks on the underside of the wings during flight. The new components generate an air vortex over the pressure equalisation vents for the fuel tanks that effectively prevent these tones from being created.
This measure is part of the Hessian “Noise Protection Alliance“, which was agreed by the state government of Hesse and the airline industry.

MD-11 measurement flights made by Lufthansa Cargo in Magdeburg-Cochstedt

Equipping or converting the A320 fleet is one of the most extensive voluntary measures for active sound reduction undertaken by Lufthansa to date.

A further possibility to significantly reduce aircraft noise will be intensively tested in the next few weeks in flyover measurements over several days at Magdeburg-Cochstedt airport with two MD-11 freight aircraft from Lufthansa Cargo. Modified sound suppression has been installed on the engine intakes of the General Electric CF6-80C2 engines. In the MODAL project, sponsored by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs, Lufthansa has already carried out investigations on a Lufthansa Technik engine test bench in Hamburg together with the DLR. This first step produced the main evidence that the so-called Hardwall Acoustic Panels in the engine intake have a noise-reducing effect. Now, in the second step, the effectiveness of the panels under real conditions is being investigated. In addition, Lufthansa expects findings to be made about reductions in landing gear noise achieved by covering the cavities in the aircraft landing gear.

During the flyover measurements at Magdeburg-Cochstedt, the aircraft approaches the airport several times, as if it were landing, and then overflies the airport several times in a certain configuration. Other constituents of the measurements programme are take-off flights with ground measurements at various engine revolution levels. Numerous microphones on the ground record the sound of the aircraft flying at different heights during every flyover. The measurement data will form the basis for possible approval of the modification for the existing Lufthansa Cargo MD-11 fleet.

The most important measure for reducing flight noise is continual investment in new aircraft. The Lufthansa Group will receive a total of 259 aircraft of the latest generation by 2025. Thus in future, 59 state-of-the-art aircraft – 34 Boeing 777-9Xs and 25 Airbus A350-900s – will supplement the long-haul fleet of the Lufthansa Group. The A350-900 will already be delivered from 2016. The noise emissions of the new models are considerably lower than those of today’s aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Andi Hiltl/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 D-AIZP (msn 5487) prepares to touch down in Zurich.

Lufthansa aircraft slide show: AG Airline Slide Show

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Lufthansa hands over an Airbus A340-300 for the transport of Ebola patients


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Lufthansa (Frankfurt) has turned over an Airbus A340-300 for Ebola patient humanitarian evacuation flights by the German government. Airbus A340-313 D-AIGZ (msn 347) has been converted from a passenger aircraft to this special transport aircraft. The airline issued this statement:

Federal Foreign Minister Dr Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Federal Minister of Health Hermann Gröhe accepted receipt of the world’s first evacuation aircraft for transporting and treating Ebola patients on behalf of the German government.

Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr handed over an Airbus A340-300 for its new role in Berlin on Thursday (November 27). At the request of the Federal Foreign Office, Lufthansa Technik spent the last few weeks converting what was previously a passenger aircraft called the “Villingen-Schwennigen” so that it could be used for this special humanitarian mission. Under its new name, the “Robert Koch”, it now serves as the world’s only evacuation facility for highly contagious patients. Unlike the smaller aircraft that have been sporadically available to date, the facility can provide comprehensive intensive care on board. The Lufthansa Group was able to complete such a complex and technically demanding undertaking so quickly because the airline was in a position to provide a long-haul aircraft at short notice that was suitable for the specific requirements of the project. As a global leader in aviation technology, Lufthansa Technik also has a wealth of experience in installing a diverse range of non-standard cabin interiors on aircraft for governments, VIPs and the business travel sector. It was able to draw on this expertise for the construction and installation of the special isolation unit in the aircraft cabin. The aircraft conversion, which started on November 17 in Hamburg, was carried out in partnership with the Robert Koch Institute (RKI).

In the middle and rear of the long-haul aircraft, passenger seats, kitchen and washing areas, and baggage lockers were removed to make way for a patient transport isolation unit surrounded by an airtight tent with negative pressure. Inside, medics can provide patients with intensive care and treatment during the flight while remaining fully protected. Two exterior tents, which are also airtight, serve as buffers so that the treatment tent can be entered and exited safely. At the front of the cabin, there are still seats for up to 19 passengers such as doctors, attendants from the RKI, isolation tent technicians and a Lufthansa engineer. Within a short space of time, a total of more than 700 pilots and flight attendants volunteered as cockpit and cabin crew for the “Robert Koch” humanitarian project, which will initially run for six months.

Lufthansa aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Lufthansa launches the first Fanhansa aircraft – Airbus A321 D-AIDG

Lufthansa A321-200 D-AIDG (14-Fanhansa)(Nose) MUC (Lufthansa)(LR)

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) has unveiled its first “Fanhansa” – titled aircraft for the upcoming World Cup in Brazil. The pictured Airbus A321-231 D-AIDG (msn 4672) was rolled out at Munich on Friday May 16 and is now in service in the LH European network. The airline issued this statement:

The first aircraft with the new “Fanhansa” livery taxied out to the runway on schedule at 11.20 on May 16. The Airbus A321-200, named after the town of Göttingen in Lower Saxony, flew from Munich to Hamburg as flight number LH 2066 on the same day. Overnight the “Delta Golf” – from its registration number D-AIDG – was embellished with special foil by five Lufthansa Technik employees in 40 hours of work. The Fanhansa lettering on this Airbus medium-haul aircraft is 7.65 meters long.

Lufthansa is celebrating a special premiere with Fanhansa. For the first time since beginning flight operations nearly 60 years ago, part of the fleet is to change the name on the aircraft fuselage. To mark the football World Cup, a total of eight Lufthansa aircraft will swap their familiar livery for the new Fanhansa logo. The Airbus A321-200 will be followed by two additional short-haul aircraft and a total of five long-haul aircraft with the Fanhansa lettering, including the Boeing 747-8, the world’s longest civilian aircraft. After departing from Munich at 11.20 a.m., the Airbus was scheduled to land at Hamburg Airport between 12.35 p.m. and 1.20 p.m., and arrive at London-Heathrow between 5.00 p.m. and 6.05 p.m. The return to Munich is scheduled for 8.55 p.m.

With Fanhansa, Lufthansa will be flying not just the German national team to Brazil, as partner of the German Football Association, but also thousands of football fans, media representatives and officials. During the many surprise Fanhansa promotions that will be happening on board Lufthansa scheduled flights and at check-in counters and gates in German airports, participants will be able to qualify immediately for a ticket to Brazil on board a Fanhansa plane.

Copyright Photo: Lufthansa. The first “Fanhansa” aircraft at Munich.

Lufthansa: AG Slide Show

Lufthansa donates its Vickers Viscount 814 D-ANAF to the Museum of Technology in Speyer, Germany, will modify 157 Airbus A320 family aircraft

Lufthansa Viscount 800 D-ANAF (55)(Grd) FRA (Lufthansa)(LR)

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) has issued this statement:

Representatives of Lufthansa Technik and Lufthansa Technical Training officially handed over a Vickers Viscount 814 to the Museum of Technology in Speyer in southwest Germany. Lufthansa operated the aircraft on scheduled routes from 1962 to 1969, and in 1972 converted it into a technical training aircraft. To date, more than 2,000 young people in the Lufthansa Group have undergone basic training on this Vickers Viscount as an aircraft mechanic or electrician.

In cooperation with the workshop team at the Museum of Technology in Speyer, Lufthansa Technik trainers and apprentices have now restored the Viscount 814 with the registration D-ANAF for exhibition purposes. Before being transported to Speyer, the plane had to be dismantled. It was then re-assembled at the museum and repainted in its original livery with its 1960s registration. The Lufthansa Technik apprentices completed the work in a total of 2,096 man-hours, and visitors to the museum can now admire the results.

In the 1960s, the Vickers Viscount 814 was the workhorse on European routes and was one of the most popular propeller aircraft ever deployed on short and medium-haul routes. Since 1958, Lufthansa has operated a total of eleven of these aircraft on its domestic German and European scheduled services.

A close friendship has developed between the Museum of Technology in Speyer and Lufthansa Technik, which is an honorary member of the Museum Association. For many years, both companies have collaborated successfully on joint projects. Back in 2003, Lufthansa handed over a retired Boeing 747-200 with the registration D-ABYM to the museum for the symbolic price of one euro. There was an outburst of applause as “Yankee Mike” (the phonetic designation used by pilots for the last two letters “YM” in the aircraft registration) taxied to its final parking position. And now the Vickers Viscount 814 has also found a new home.

While the Lufthansa Group is currently investing 36 billion euros in new, even more environmentally friendly aircraft as part of the largest fleet renovation process in the company’s history, the Vickers Viscount represents a “historic fleet renewal” at Speyer’s Museum of Technology.

In other news, Lufthansa has announced it will add vortex generators to reduce noise for its 157 Airbus family aircraft. The company issued this statement:

Lufthansa is an active proponent of noise abatement and is investing in the nationwide modification of 157 aircraft from its Airbus A320 family. These planes connect Lufthansa’s hubs in Frankfurt and Munich with the destinations in its closely meshed European route network.

The manufacturer, Airbus, has even developed vortex generators especially for the A320 family. These are based on the findings of research carried out by Lufthansa and the German Aerospace Center. Flyover measurements showed that the vortex generators eliminate two unpleasant tones and therefore reduce the total noise generated by the approaching plane by up to two decibels. They can be fitted both to aircraft already in service as well as to the new Airbus A319, A320 and A321 models, which are still to be delivered.

“By fitting these vortex generators to our Airbus short and medium-haul fleet, we are continuing to invest in active noise protection”, says Kay Kratky, Member of the Lufthansa German Airlines Board, Operation & Hub Frankfurt. “In addition to the extensive modernisation of our fleet over the next few years, this is one of several steps that we are taking to reduce noise. It shows our commitment to working towards a balance between the interests of aviation and local residents, especially at our hubs.”

The tons that the vortex generators will eliminate are created on the underside of the wing by the pressure equalisation vents for the fuel tanks. Airflows passing over them in flight have an effect like blowing across the mouth of a bottle. The new components create a vortex in front of these vents and so prevent the noise. The modification of the existing fleet is to start in early 2014. All new deliveries of the A320 and A321 for Lufthansa will be fitted as standard with the vortex generators in future.

Top Copyright Photo: Lufthansa.

Lufthansa: AG Slide Show

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Bottom Copyright Photo: Paul Bannwarth/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-114 D-AILF (msn 636) (Star Alliance) arrives in Zurich.

Unite Here Union criticizes Southwest using the Lufthansa Technik 737 maintenance program

Unite Here represents workers throughout the U.S. and Canada who work in the hotel, gaming, food service, manufacturing, textile, distribution, laundry, and airport industries. The union has issued the following press release which is critical of Southwest Airlines using the Lufthansa Technik maintenance program for its Boeing 737s:

“In 2005, Lufthansa Technik helped Southwest Airlines migrate their Boeing 737 maintenance program to a new model that promised to be good for business. In a press release, Lufthansa wrote, “The significant reduction in the number of maintenance tasks results in savings of up to 30 percent on maintenance costs, with less time in the hangar corresponding to extra revenue-earning flying hours.”

After a hole ripped through the cabin of a Southwest Boeing 737-300 flying over Arizona last week, such proclamations ought to cause pause.

While the FAA has ordered a review of the agency’s older plane inspections, the union Unite Here today (April 7) called on the FAA to also review how cost-reduction programs such as those pushed by Lufthansa pose risks to proper execution of existing FAA standards.

Last Friday’s incident is not the first cause for concern from Southwest since the airline instituted the revamped maintenance program with Lufthansa Technik. In 2008, the FAA sought civil penalties against Southwest for “flying planes that were not inspected for cracks.” Nicholas A. Sabatini, the agency’s associate administrator for aviation safety at the time, said in the Washington Post, “The FAA is taking action against Southwest Airlines for a failing to follow rules that are designed to protect passengers and crew.”

Lufthansa Technik had a long relationship with Southwest, dating at least back to a 2001 project to revamp Southwest’s maintenance management. Lufthansa Technik still listed Southwest as a client as late as 2009.

While Southwest voluntarily grounded 15 percent of its Boeing 737 fleet after the incident, Lufthansa airline said on Monday that it had no plans to ground its own Boeing 737 aircraft. After Friday’s incident, Lufthansa only inspected 3 of its 33 737-300 planes for the metal fatigue that impacted Southwest, on the grounds that these are the only three from the same “series” as the Southwest jet. Lufthansa has the second largest Boeing 737-300 fleet in the world.

Lufthansa Technik is the aviation company’s maintenance subsidiary. In 2010, it accounted for 24 percent of Lufthansa’s total group operating profit.”

Copyright Photo: Rolf Wallner. Please click on the photo for additional information.