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Qatar Airways Scoops Four Onboard Hospitality Awards 2021

Severe Turbulence on Qatar Airways Flight from Doha to Dublin Injures 12

Qatar Airways secured the ‘Cabin Concept of the Year’ as a Gold Winner and the ‘Catering Innovation of the Year’ accolade.

The airline also collected two Readers’ Vote awards for ‘Best Onboard Snack in Business and First Class’ and ‘Best for Service Equipment – Passenger’

DOHA, Qatar – Having leveraged innovative inflight enhancements during the COVID-19 pandemic and redefining the customer journey, Qatar Airways is thrilled to announce that it has been rewarded with four new accolades at the Onboard Hospitality Awards 2021 virtual ceremony, including the coveted Gold Winner for the ‘Cabin Concept of the Year 2021’. The airline also scooped the top global title for ‘Catering Innovation of the Year’ for the newly introduced brunch platter, as well as two Readers’ Vote awards; the ‘Best for Onboard Snack in Business and First Class’ and ‘Best for Service Equipment – Passenger’.

The airline was highly commended for two other accolades including ‘Best use of Onboard Technology’ and ‘Best Onboard Amenity Kits in First and Business Class’.

Qatar Airways Chief Officer Customer Experience, Mr. Rossen Dimitrov, said: “We are pleased to receive multiple awards from Onboard Hospitality which further solidifies our position as an industry leader in customer experience. Honouring our passengers with truly inspirational experiences, we will not stop here and will continue to strive and excel in our services as they are quintessential in Qatar Airways’ DNA.”

Qatar Airways attained the pinnacle of Onboard Hospitality Awards, the ‘Cabin Concept of the Year’, for redefining the inflight customer experience during the pandemic. The airline was awarded for its ability to adapt the highest levels of safety and comfort through enhanced services and technologies; ultimately exceeding all expectations.

The airline also scooped the ‘Catering Innovation of the Year’ award for the airline’s brunch platter which consists of six-indent tantalising spreads, offering passengers a variety of flavours in one serving.

Whilst the ‘Onboard Snack in Business and First Class’ was awarded for its delectable Nova Scotia Lobster Claw with fresh avocado and sourdough toast, prepared with seasonal fresh organic garden salad.

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Qatar Airways’ exclusively designed limited edition BRIC’s Breast Cancer awareness amenity kits were also highly commended,with each kit containing select products from Italy’s Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio, the environmentally friendly and innovative nutrition-centric olive oil company. The skincare range included lip balm, hydrating facial mist, and anti-ageing moisturiser, as well as pink socks and eyeshades.

The airline was also acknowledged for its efforts in adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic and was highly commended for the ‘Best use of Onboard Technology’ award based on Qatar Airways’ 100 per cent touch-free inflight entertainment technology – Oryx One.

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The Onboard Hospitality Awards 2021 recognise innovation and excellence in people, products and services to support the onboard passenger experience in the air, on rail, ferry or cruise. With a rigorous and accountable judging process, only the very best products and companies win an Onboard Hospitality Award.

Qatar Airways interested in Boeing 777X freighter version

The national carrier of the State of Qatar continues to rebuild its network, which currently stands at over 140 destinations. With more frequencies being added to key hubs, Qatar Airways offers unrivalled connectivity to passengers, making it easy for them to change their travel dates or destination as required.

Aerospace

Pakistan’s Ambitious Plan to Acquire and Produce Chinese FC-31 Stealth Fighter

Pakistan’s Ambitious Plan to Acquire and Produce Chinese FC-31 Stealth Fighter

Pakistan is embarking on an ambitious endeavor to bolster its air defense capabilities with the acquisition and potential local production of the Chinese FC-31 stealth fighter jet.

Talks are reportedly underway between the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and the Shenyang Aircraft Corporation, the developer of the FC-31, signaling a significant leap forward for Pakistan’s military aviation prowess.

The FC-31, a mid-sized, twin-engine fifth-generation fighter, promises advanced air combat capabilities, including stealth technology that surpasses anything currently in the PAF‘s fleet. With plans to retire the JF-17 production line by 2030, the FC-31 could emerge as the new flagship aircraft, offering unmatched performance and versatility.

Experts speculate that Pakistan’s interest in the FC-31 could also signal broader implications for the international market. As China develops both land and carrier versions of the FC-31, analysts foresee it becoming a cost-effective alternative to pricier options like the F-35, potentially challenging the dominance of the US aerospace industry and reshaping global strategic rivalries.

Adding complexity to the deal is China’s push for the WS-13 engine, previously rejected for the JF-17 but now under consideration for both the FC-31 and future JF-17 variants. Engine standardization could streamline logistical and maintenance processes for the PAF, further enhancing the appeal of the FC-31.

While negotiations continue, the success of the FC-31 acquisition and local production hinges on several factors, including the outcome of the WS-13 engine discussions. Pakistan’s pursuit of the FC-31 comes amidst its eagerness to replace its aging fleet, with previous attempts to upgrade its F-16s by the United States due to geopolitical pressures.

Amidst these developments, Pakistan previous interest in the Turkish-made Kaan fifth-generation fighter underscores its eagerness to replace its aging fleet. Despite previous attempts to secure upgrades for its F-16s from the United States, Pakistan’s quest for advanced aerial capabilities has led it to explore alternative avenues, with the FC-31 emerging as a promising contender in its pursuit of air superiority.

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Aviation

China’s Indigenous HH-100 UAS Successfully Completes First Flight

China’s Indigenous HH-100 UAS Successfully Completes First Flight

In a significant milestone for China’s aviation industry, the HH-100 aerial commercial unmanned transportation system successfully completed its maiden flight, as announced by the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) on Wednesday.

The HH-100 demonstrator took to the skies for its inaugural flight at a general aviation airport in Xi’an, located in northwest China’s Shaanxi Province. This successful test was conducted by AVIC, China’s leading aircraft manufacturer, marking a pivotal step in the development of the country’s unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) capabilities.

Developed independently by AVIC XAC Commercial Aircraft Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of AVIC based in Xi’an, the HH-100 consists of two main components: an unmanned aerial vehicle and a ground-based command-and-control station. This innovative system is designed to offer a cost-effective, high-payload solution for various transportation and logistical needs.

The HH-100 is notable for its low cost and large tonnage capabilities. With a designed maximum take-off weight of 2,000 kilograms and a payload capacity of 700 kilograms, it can transport approximately 4 cubic meters of cargo over a range of 520 kilometers. The drone’s maximum cruise speed is 300 kilometers per hour, and it can operate at altitudes up to 5,000 meters.

Primarily intended for feeder logistics, the HH-100 is also equipped to participate in a variety of other roles, including forest and grassland firefighting, fire monitoring, transportation and delivery of rescue materials, relay communication, and artificial rain enhancement. This versatility makes it a valuable asset in both commercial and emergency response operations.

Looking ahead, AVIC plans to develop a series of products based on the HH-100 platform, with models capable of carrying 5 tons, 10 tons, and even larger payloads. These future developments aim to meet the growing demand for large-scale, intelligent, low-cost, and highly reliable unmanned cargo planes.

The HH-100’s successful first flight marks an important achievement for AVIC and China’s aviation sector, showcasing the potential of homegrown technology to advance the country’s capabilities in unmanned aerial transportation. With its impressive range of features and applications, the HH-100 is poised to play a significant role in enhancing air-ground transportation connectivity and addressing various logistical challenges in the region.

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Aviation

Russia’s Venture into Spare Parts Production for Western-Made Jets

Russia's Venture into Spare Parts Production for Western-Made Jets

In a strategic move to mitigate the challenges posed by the shortage of spare parts for foreign-made passenger aircraft, Russian carriers are charting a new course by turning to domestic alternatives. At the forefront of this shift are two groundbreaking projects unveiled at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on June 6.

Leading the charge is Protektor Group, a prominent Russian MRO provider, which has committed a substantial investment of RUB3.5 billion ($39 million) to establish a cutting-edge facility near Moscow Domodedovo airport.

This facility is slated to specialize in the production of spare parts tailored for Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 narrowbody jets, with operations expected to commence in 2026. With a projected workforce of 800 employees, the facility aims to address the pressing demand for critical components in the aviation sector.

This initiative aligns seamlessly with broader governmental endeavors outlined in June 2022, which envisioned the manufacture of 1,036 airplanes using solely Russian parts by 2030. Bolstering this ambition, the state allocated a substantial sum of 283 billion rubles (U.S. $3.1 billion) in January 2024 to propel the production of 609 aircraft, with a particular emphasis on medium-haul models.

Protektor’s trajectory towards this pivotal milestone has been marked by notable achievements, including receiving production organization approval from Rosaviatsia in 2024. Prior to this, the company had earned certification for the overhaul of landing gear for Boeing 737s, solidifying its position as a trusted entity in aircraft maintenance.

Beyond the realm of spare parts production, the Russian aviation industry is poised for a significant transformation as it gears up to redefine its identity. Sergey Chemezov, the head of Rostec, the state-owned conglomerate overseeing aerospace, engineering, and defense sectors, has unveiled ambitious plans to resurrect the renowned ‘Yakovlev‘ brand. This rebranding initiative extends across the spectrum of Russian-made airliners, signaling a new era of innovation and prominence.

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