Wednesday, 28 September 2022

Singapore's Changi Airport is going to get a lot bigger

Singapore's Changi Airport has long been considered a destination in itself, so much more than just a generic space one passes through to hop on a plane and fly somewhere else.
For ten years, it went undefeated in the annual Skytrax 'World's Best Airports" awards, losing its crown to Qatar's Hamad International Airport in 2021. In 2022, it finished in third place on the list, falling behind repeat winner Hamad International and Tokyo's Haneda Airport.
Now, as travelers return to the city-state and its much-hyped airport following the lifting of pandemic-related travel restrictions earlier this year, Singapore officials are focused on the future -- and that includes expansion.

Details have recently been revealed for a 5th Terminal, with officials promising a space that is a social extension of Singapore rather than just another piece of transport infrastructure.

During a National Day Rally in late July, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced that T5 will add capacity for about 50 million passengers per year. That's a big number considering its four current passenger terminals are able to handle about 82 million passengers a year. Pointing to a map while making his address, he noted that the T5 will be as big as all four present terminals put together.

"We are building another new Changi Airport," he said. "It is huge."

Construction of T5 will kick off in about two years, with the facility expected to open to travelers in the mid-2030s. Located within the 1,080-hectare Changi East development, it will have a three-runway system and will be linked to the other four terminals.

My family and I were in Singapore last week and spent 6 hours at the terminal wondering around. 
After checking in our luggage at terminal 1, we walked across the road to the Jewel Terminal.
As soon as you walk into the terminal you can't help but see the Rain Vortex, which sits at 7 storeys high and surrounded by a terraced forest setting.
Walking around the Jewel you can't help but think you are in a multi storery shopping centre, as it spans
10 storeys – five above-ground and five underground.
Jewel includes gardens, attractions, a hotel, about 300 retail and dining outlets, as well as early baggage check-in aviation facilities. 


Main things to do and see in the Jewel are
  • Bouncing Net
  • Canopy Bridge
  • Canopy Park
  • Hedge Maze
  • Mirror Maze
  • Rain Vortex
  • Walking Net











Tuesday, 27 September 2022

20 celebrities who own private jets

I came across this story today and I thought it was interesting.

Below are 20 celebrities that own their own aircraft.

50 CENT
As someone who has always loved to one-up others, it should be expected that rapper 50 Cent went out of his way to get two private jets, including a Cessna 510. 

ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER
The Hollywood legend’s jet of choice is a Gulfstream III that cost him around US$35 million and was used to travel between Los Angeles and Sacramento when he was working as Governor of California.

BILL GATES
It should come as no surprise that one of the richest men ever owns a private jet, and in fact, he owns several. The most notable of Gates’ collection is likely not one, but two US$70-million Gulfstream 650ERs, one of the fastest jets available travelling at Mach 0.925.

CARDI B
While rapper Cardi B is the sole owner of a US$20-million Bombardier bd 700 private jet, she has said that she’ll still fly commercial to save money if she isn’t travelling with more than three people. 

CELINE DION
The Canadian singer owns a Bombardier BD 700 that is equipped with multiple bathrooms, its own kitchen, and a printer and fax machine for when business needs to be conducted thousands of feet in the air. Dion primarily uses the aircraft, valued at US$42 million, for longer international flights and travelling between cities while on tour.

DONALD TRUMP
Dubbed “Trump Force One,” this US$100-million Boeing 757 comes with 24-karat gold-plated accents and its own movie studio inside. It’s no secret that the former president loves to line his possessions with gold as a way of flaunting his wealth, and apparently that includes jets.

DRAKE
You don’t become one of the most successful rappers of all time and not flaunt your cash a little bit. In Drake’s case, it’s with a Boeing 767-300F that likely cost him US$242 million in total after personalization. The size of “Air Drake” means a cross-country trip costs well over US$21,600 in gas, though he’s especially gotten in trouble for shorter flights.

DWAYNE JOHNSON
It’s no surprise that Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has a jet to call his own. The US$65-million Gulfstream G650 caters to most of his travel needs and usually comes with two flight attendants taking care of Johnson and his guests.

GEORGE LUCAS
Unfortunately, the Millennium Falcon isn’t available in the real world so Star Wars creator George Lucas must instead settle for a dark red US$61-million Gulfstream G550 that can seat as many as 19 people.

HARRISON FORD
As an accomplished pilot with several millions to his name, Harrison Ford has purchased himself a few aircraft, including helicopters, stunt planes, and his Cessna Citation Sovereign 680.

JACKIE CHAN
This iconic actor owns not just one private jet, but two of them: an Embraer Legacy500 and a 650. The two planes cost him a combined US$50 million, with the 500 handling short trips and the 650 being used for international flights.

JAY Z
Jay-Z and his wife Beyoncé are the owners of a US$40-million Bombardier Challenger 850 called S. Carter, named after Jay-Z’s real name (Shawn Carter). The jet was apparently a Father’s Day gift that Beyoncé bought her husband, which shows just how much money these two icons have.

JIM CAREY
Legendary comedian Jim Carrey is the owner of a US$59-million Gulfstream-V, considered to be one of the highest-performing private jets available, with only about 100 in existence.

JOHN TRAVOLTA
John Travolta is unique among celebrity jet owners, as it’s not certain how many he even has—at least seven planes. What’s more impressive is the longtime actor keeps them stored at his Florida mansion rather than at an airport. The collection includes a Boeing 707, an Eclipse 500, and a Bombardier Challenger 601, among others.

KIM KARDASHIAN
Another nicknamed jet—the “Kim Air”—is a Gulfstream 650ER that cost over US$150 million. It’s the same type of jet that billionaires Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos have.

LUDACRIS
Ludacris was once one of the most in-demand rappers on the planet, so it’s no surprise that he flexed some of his wealth with a US$20-million Hawker 700 private jet.

MORGAN FREEMAN
Morgan Freeman not only owns a US$7.5 million SyberJet SJ30, but he also has his pilot’s licence, meaning he may even be the one flying it on some occasions

NICOLAS CAGE
Nicolas Cage has a long filmography on his resumé, which has taken him around the world, and thanks to his US$30-million Gulfstream G550, he can travel in peace.

OPRAH
With a net worth of over US$2.9 billion, Oprah Winfrey has earned herself some spending money, including enough to invest US$85 million on a Gulfstream G650. Over US$10 million worth of amenities have been added, including a full bathroom with a shower and bath, a dining area, and seats that can convert into beds.

TOM CRUISE
While he may have played an aircraft pilot in a number of films and has his pilot’s licence, Tom Cruise usually leaves the flying to others when it comes to his 1998 Gulfstream IV. The US$36-million jet is just one piece of the Hollywood star’s impressive collection of luxury vehicles.




Monday, 26 September 2022

Russian airlines staff start to receive conscription notices

Russian employees at airlines and airports have started to receive conscription notices after President Vladimir Putin ordered a partial military mobilisation. Employees of five airlines, including Russian top carrier Aeroflot and staff at more than 10 airports received notices within a day of Putin ordering the mobilisation, the paper reported.  Aeroflot declined to comment
According to sources in three companies, potentially 50-80% of the employees could be called up, with a source close to Aeroflot saying that over half of the staff at three of the group's airlines potentially could be drafted.

Most pilots in airlines are reserve officers trained in military departments of flight schools, or privates who have completed military service. At least five companies have started to compile, and two have already sent, lists of employees to be exempted from the draft, as the exemption is critical not only for pilots and air traffic controllers, but also for technical, commercial and IT specialists.

Putin ordered Russia's first mobilisation since World War Two and backed a plan to annex swathes of Ukraine, triggering some draft-age Russians to leave the country. Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Wednesday that around 300,000 reservists would be called up, and that they would be specialists with combat experience.

All Russian men are required to do a year's military service between the ages of 18 and 27, although university students may instead receive instruction from a military faculty alongside their chosen studies.

.

Sunday, 25 September 2022

West Atlantic 737 runs off runway

A West Atlantic Boeing 737-400 freighter travelling from Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG/LFPG) to Montpellier-Méditerranée Airport (MPL/LFMT) being operated by Swiftair overran the runway when landing in Montpellier. The Boeing 737 stopped partly over a nearby lake

Rescue services rushed to the aircraft and helped out the three occupants of the aircraft, who escaped unharmed.

As the aircraft is stuck at the end of the runway, partly over water, the authorities closed the airport of Montpellier for commercial and freighter traffic until further notice.

About 60 firefighters came to the site while a specialised team will relocate the aircraft.

The French Bureau d’Enquetes et d’Analyses pour la Securite de l’Aviation Civile (BEA) has launched an investigation into the mishap and provided the following images:

©PHOTOPQR/LE MIDI LIBRE/JEAN MICHEL MART ; MONTPELLIER ; 24/09/2022 ; MONTPELLIER AEROPORT DE FREJORGUES UN AVION CARGO A RATE SON ATERRISSAGE DANS LA NUIT DU 23 AU 24 SEPTEMBRE ET A FINI DANS L’ETANG DE MAUGUIO
MONTPELLIER 09/24/2022: 

AFP PHOTO / Bureau d’Enquetes et d’Analyses pour la Securite de l’Aviation Civile (BEA)

Aircraft Information:
Airline: West Atlantic
Code: WT/SWT
Aircraft: Boeing 737-436
Registration: EC-NLS
Serial Number: 25856
Engines: 2 x CFMI CFM56-3C1
First Flew: January 1993
Age: 29 Yrs. 8 Mts


The aircraft has had many owners over the years
02/02/1993 Bristish Airways G-DOCW 
27/07/2017 Atlantic Airlines G-JMCJ 
01/11/2017 West Atlantic G-JMCJ 
10/10/2020 SwiftAir EC-NLS 


Saturday, 24 September 2022

Republic of Singapore Air Force Museum

Before heading off to do some commercial plane spotting, my family and I called out to the Singapore Air Force Museum for a look around. The museum is located at Airport Road in Paya Lebar, in the eastern region of Singapore. Right behind the museum is the Paya Lebar Air Base (IATA: QPG, ICAO: WSAP) The airbase goes by the motto of Strength Through Readiness.
When we arrived there, we saw 5 model aircraft on display outside and 7 model aircraft inside.  On the second level they had displays of their history in regard to badges, rankings, unforms etc, and a replica flight deck. One thing you can't help but notice in Singapore is the presence of military activity (F15's) constantly flying over Singapore city. We watched a video at the museum showing how they are constantly monitoring the skies over Singapore and surrounding areas. Their Island Air Defence system enables them to respond swiftly and decisively to any potential air threats. 

























Friday, 23 September 2022

Sparks fly on United 777

UNTED B777-222 N787UA (MSN 26939)

A United Airlines 777-200 travelling from Newark-Liberty International Airport, NJ (EWR/KEWR) to São Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport, SP (GRU/SBGR) with 279 people on board, was climbing out of Newark’s runway 22L at 11.24pm local, when the tower advised there had been sparks coming off the left- hand engine.

The United Airlines crew advised all indications were normal and continued the climb advising departure they were talking to maintenance to see whether they had any downloadable information, as the plane was flying fine.

The crew requested to level off at FL240 then after holding for about 12 minutes the crew requested to dump fuel and return to Newark. After dumping fuel for about 30 minutes the crew requested direct to Newark, positioned for an ILS approach to runway 22L and advised they needed no assistance on the ground. The aircraft landed safely on runway 22L an hour thirty-five later, vacated the runway and taxied to the apron.





Aircraft Information:
Airline: United Airlines
Code: UA/UAL
Aircraft: Boeing 777-222
Registration: N787UA
Serial Number: 26939
Engines: 2 X PW PW 2040
First Flew: 29/10/1996
Age: 25 Yrs. 11 Mts



Spotting in Singapore

For those of you that look at my blog regularly, I apologise for not posting lately. I took my family on a holiday to Singapore last week. KLM is my favorite airline in the world, and Singapore gets two KLM's a day, one at 3.30pm and the second at 11.15pm. They also have a 777 in the Orange Pride livery, which they introduced back in 2016. (The livery takes the traditional KLM blue and merges it with the national color of the Netherlands – Orange. The airline says that “The combination emphasises KLM's Dutch roots and pride in the national colour of the Netherlands.)

We had Sunday planned for spotting at the Changi Beach location. Sunday came and they were arriving on 20R which was perfect, but unfortunately, it was raining extremely hard, so disappointingly we canceled that day's spotting. We rescheduled for Tuesday afternoon, and as luck would have it, the Orange Pride was coming to Singapore. I was so excited as I really wanted to see this aircraft.

After visiting the Air Force Museum, (story to come soon) we grabbed an Uber and headed for Changi Beach viewing spot. Things didn't go exactly to plan as they had a runway change. So desperately searching google maps, I found an area close to the 02L approach path. So, in another Uber, off we went. The place we found wasn't perfect, neither were the weather conditions, but it would have to do. At least I got to see the Orange Pride and the brand-new Scoot Pikachu 787-9.
Once again, I want to thank my amazing family, for giving up a day of sightseeing so I can enjoy my passion. Thank you so much...

AIR ASIA A320-251 9M-AGI (MSN 7944)
AK714 OFF TO KUALA LUMPUR (KUL)


AIR ASIA A320-216 9M-AHE (MSN 3327)
AK712 OFF TO KUALA LUMPUR (KUL)
SPORTING THE JANNINE LIVERY)


QATAR CARGO B777-FDZ A7-BFG (MSN 42299)
QR8006 OFF TO MELBOURNE (MEL)

US BANGLA AIRLINES B737-8Q8 S2-AJA (MSN 30039)
BS307 ARRIVING FROM DHAKA (DAC)

QATAR A350-1041 A7-ANQ (MSN 382)
QR946 ARRIVING FROM DOHA (DOH)

KLM B777-306 PH-BVA (MSN 35671)
KL835 ARRIVING FROM AMSTERDAM (AMS)




SCOOT B787-9 9V-OJJ (MSN 37131)
TR843 ARRIVING FROM SEOUL (ICN)



MALAYSIA A330-323 9M-MTM (MSN 1431)
MH619 ARRIVING FROM KUALA LUMPUR (KUL)

CHINA SOUTHERN B787-9 B-1242 (MSN 63978)
CZ3039 ARRIVING FROM GUANGHOU (CAN)

AIR FRANCE A350-941 F-HTYI (MSN 491)
AFR256 ARRIVING FROM PARIS (CDG)


BATIK B737MAX 9M-LRF (MSN 42994)
MXD801 ARRIVING FROM KUALA LUMPUR (KUL)

MY INDO AIRLINES B737-39K PK-MYC (MSN 27274)
2Y932 ARRIVING FROM BALIKPAPAN (BPN)

ALL NIPPON AIRWAYS B787-9 JA922A (MSN 43867)
NH841 ARRIVING FROM TOKYO (HND)

BATIK B737-8GP PK-LZT (MSN 39863)
ID7151 ARRIVING FROM JAKARTA (CGK) 

SINGAPORE B747-412 9V-SFO (MSN 32900)
SQ7281 ARRIVING FROM SYDNEY (SYD)


LUFTHANSA A350-941 D-AIXE (MSN 136)
DLH790 ARRIVING FROM MUNICH (MUC)


SINGAPORE B787-10 9V-SCC (MSN 60258)
SQ637 ARRIVING FROM TOKYO (NRT)

SINGAPORE A350-941 9V-SMQ (MSN 133)
SQ959 ARRIVING FROM JAKARTA (CGK)

SINGAPORE A380-841 9V-SKR (MSN 082)
SQ319 ARRIVING FROM LONDON (LHR)


VIET JET AIR A320-214 VN-A675 (MSN 7167)
VJ815 ARRIVING FROM HO CHI MINH CITY (SGN)


LUFTHANSA A340-313 D-AIGZ (MSN 347)
LH778 ARRIVING FROM FRANKFURT (FRA)

CHINA CARGO B747-40B B-2425 (MSN 35207)
CK283 ARRIVING FROM SHANGHAI (PVG)


VIETNAM AIRLINES A321-231 VN-A606 (MSN 5709)
VN655 ARRIVING FROM HO CHI MINH CITY (SGN)