IN BRIEF, THE LATEST CARGO AIRLINE INDUSTRY NEWS.
Ilyushin plans new freighter
There were plans between India and Russia to develop a joint military transporter which could also be used for civilian cargo operations. India pulled out but Russia continued the planning and has it seems come a step nearer to developing the Ilyushin IL-276 freighter. In recent simulator tests Ilyushin states that they are happy with the results, especially concerning the choice of future wings for the aircraft.
The IL-276 is planned to carry 20 tons of cargo or military equipment and could operate over a distance of up to 2,000 kilometers. The military version has priority at the moment, but Ilyushin states that its civilian cargo carriage capacity is very attractive. So far, no future civilian operator has been named. India and Russia had joined up on the IL-276 programme in order to develop a competitive freighter to the Hercules C-130. The civilian part of the project has waned somewhat since India pulled out.
Air Belgium looks to add U.S. flights
A successful start was recorded by newcomer Air Belgium when they commenced their Brussels to Hong Kong flights with an Airbus A340. CargoForwarder Global reported last week on the carrier’s plans for air cargo carriage and the possibility that they may consider adding freighters.
In the meantime, Air Belgium has filed an application with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to operate charter flights into the United States and extend these to scheduled services in the future. The carrier hopes that the U.S. authorities will OK their request very soon so that they can start services already this year. U.S. destinations have so far not been revealed.
AirBridgeCargo adds Budapest
The Moscow-based all cargo carrier has now added Budapest to its long list of European gateways. AirBridgeCargo will operate two weekly B747-8F services into Budapest, these will be on Tuesday and Saturday. The Hungarian shippers will be offered the complete capacity of 139 tons on the aircraft. Hungarian shippers, especially those producing automobile parts, electronics and pharmaceutical will have direct access to destinations throughout the globe being served by ABC. The flights will operate Budapest to Moscow, with on forwarding on ABC’s large international network.
Tigers goes into new Shanghai facility
Hong Kong-headquartered Tigers Limited who specialise in e-commerce fulfilment and supply chain solutions across the globe, have relocated their China operations into a new facility in Shanghai. This has two warehouses which will ease present constraints on space available for their clients. The new facility is situated close by the Shanghai Yangshan Port and the dual warehouse model will enable Tigers to offer better B2B and B2C solutions for its customers. Total space is just under 4,000 square metres and is equipped with ten-metre high storage racks which offers air and sea freight consolidation geared towards e-commerce shipments.
ACD discusses on unmanned freighters
The discussion at the June meeting of Germany’s Aircargo Club was centered around the future of unmanned air cargo freighters in the form of drones. “From Vision to Reality”- that was the theme at the ACD get together. Aircargo Club President Christopher Stoller informed those attending that the German government should be forced to look closely at the regulatory conditions for the operation of unmanned drones as cargo carriers. There’s a long way to go yet before the vision actually becomes reality, but many are convinced that this form of cargo transport, no matter how small a start will be, has a definite future.
The German Centre for Air and Space Transport (DLR) has a project named Automated Low Altitude Air Delivery (ALAADy) going which is studying the varying possibilities and concepts which could be put into motion for unmanned air cargo transporters. The ALAADy group is looking at using an unmanned Gyrocopter for tests and if successful the plan is to introduce a cargo Gyrocopter which can carry loads up to 1,000 kilograms and operate below a 200 metre ceiling so as not to come into conflict with normal air traffic operations.
Indeed, a long way to go, but surely a future air cargo transport option.
A dog’s life is not easy
Dogs living in Australia and New Zealand were at the end of last year in danger of starving as dog food supplies ran out due to a supermarket computer virus which brought stocks down to nil without anyone noticing.
The ‘Dog Food Express’ was put into motion by aircraft charter specialists Air Charter Service (ACS), who managed at short notice to charter four B777 freighters to carry 400 tonnes of tasty canned dog meat. The flights all operated from Paris to Sydney and Melbourne in Australia and Auckland in New Zealand.
One can assume they were met with a lot of tail wagging.
Niels Weithe heads up CEVA eCommerce
Swiss-based CEVA Logistics has created a new position as Global Head of eCommerce and has appointed Niels Weithe to take this up. He will be based in Germany and reports directly to Brett Bissell, CEVA’s Chief Operating Officer of Contract Logistics.
Mr Weithe previously spent many years as President of Arvato’s consumer products division and has been heavily involved there in building up their European eCommerce division. He is said to have an extensive knowledge of supply chain services in the field of Hi-tech and IT consumer products. CEVA aims to further expand in the B2C field and further grow their future eCommerce business.
Cool Chain pushes for perishables supply chain standards
“The industry must collaborate to tackle a disconnected and fragmented chain, where one third of all food produced is wasted.”
The above statement issued by the Cool Chain Association (CCA) is meant as a wakeup call to the industry and the air cargo community to get their act together and come up with their own set of standards for the handling and distribution of perishables, and not wait for the rest of the world to establish them. This was the message given by CCA’s Chairman Stavros Evangelakakis who is also Global Product Manager Healthcare & Perishable at Cargolux. The discussion at the recent CCA conference in Luxembourg centered around the theme “World Without Food Waste.” Delegates were told, and were probably shocked to hear that around 1.3 billion metric tonnes of food is wasted throughout the supply chain every year. This, they heard, is equivalent to one third of all food produced each year. Mr Evangelakakis stated that “A standard in perishables should be something akin to the standards in pharmaceuticals.” The audience was told that ‘collaboration, transparency and data sharing, as well as training for perishable growers and better facilities are needed to inject quality into a fragmented and disconnected supply chain.’
John Mc Donagh