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Hi Ciabatta,

I agree with you & expect a relatively quick snap back on tourist travel once the confidence level of travelers increases on the back of a potential vaccine & falling cases.

Business travel is a more complicated issue with cost reductions achieved through Zoom, etc, but being a bit old school, I don't think there is an substitute for face to face meetings, conferences, etc.


As with all things, time will tell





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Hi All,

Following on from Ryarair, here is how Delta's Ed Bastion see things.







Barron’s: We are seeing an explosion in coronavirus cases in the U.S. and abroad. What’s your outlook for the fourth quarter and do you still expect Delta to turn an operating profit next spring?


Ed Bastian: The virus isn’t in a good place in many parts of the country and cities where we operate. But there’s been a steady build of air traffic coming back. It’s averaged gains of 1% to 2% a week for the last six months. We’re now at 35% of traffic levels compared to a year ago. While the numbers are still dramatically below pre-pandemic levels, people are getting more comfortable and understand the safety of air travel.


We set a goal to get our cash burn down to $10 million to $12 million a day in the fourth quarter, and we’re still on a path to get there. The revenue improvements we saw through October have stayed steady, so we’re not adjusting our guidance other than to say we’re continuing to get better.


We expect to be cash-flow-positive by the spring, and still think that’s a good general estimate. Whether it’s the news from Pfizer [PFE] on a vaccine, or other medical advances, we’re seeing light at the end of the tunnel. There won’t be a big surge of travel, but confidence is being built. The surge in the virus is a cause for concern, but all the improvements we’re seeing from the medical field is a source of encouragement.

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Hi All,

Thought this was newsworthy given the document title - "Sandia National Laboratories - Tech Transfer Success Stories 2020".

Hopefully we are on the cusp of a significant change in structural monitoring.








Enhancing Aviation Safety


Sandia’s expertise in structural health monitoring is enhancing structural

integrity for commercial airlines.



The aging fleet of aircraft in the United States amplifies the probability of structural integrity issues and

accompanying complications. Inspection systems and repair practices are being developed to help enable the

aviation community to maintain the commercial aging fleet more safely and cost effectively. These improved

technologies will provide constant monitoring for the structural integrity of aircraft to ensure passenger safety

and security. Sandia National Laboratories has worked in aviation safety for over 25 years in conjunction with

the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Sandia began its long history in the field when the FAA, in response

to several aviation incidents, increased its research efforts to improve inspection, maintenance, and repair of

commercial aircraft.



Sandia’s Airworthiness Assurance Center (AANC), which is operated for the FAA by the laboratory, conducts

independent inspection and maintenance development, reliability, flight testing, and technology transfer

activities to facilitate the use of improved practices into the industry. Areas of expertise for the laboratory include

nondestructive inspection (NDI), advanced materials, engines, structural integrity, and a wide range of other

airworthiness assurance areas.

A structural health monitoring program at AANC has collaborated with the Boeing Corporation, Delta Air Lines,

Structural Monitoring Systems, Anodyne Electronics Manufacturing Corp, and the FAA to understand the technical

gaps of implementing structural health monitoring on commercial aircraft and the potential effects on FAA

regulations and guidance. Recent activity has included the development of built-in sensors that automatically

and remotely assess an aircraft’s structural condition in real time and signal the need for maintenance. The team

worked to provide the installation procedures for these new sensors to technicians and now oversees monitoring

of the in-flight tests. Delta Air Lines and a foreign aircraft manufacturer have partnered with Sandia researchers in

two separate programs to install about 100 sensors on their commercial aircraft. These sensors are now part of

an FAA certification process that will make the sensors widely available to US airlines.



Once the sensors have passed through the FAA’s certification process, structural health monitoring in aircraft will

help commercial airlines be more cost effective by basing maintenance on the actual condition of aircraft, rather

than fixed schedules and inspection routines. Constant monitoring for structural health will also assist airlines by

increasing oversight and decreasing aircraft downtime, particularly if sensors are mounted in hard-to-reach areas.

Improved practices will reduce preventable aircraft failures as well as the accompanying safety issues. Benefits will

be passed on to passengers, further ensuring safety and on-time flights.

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Hi All,

Given the recent Wifi STC announcement, I thought this was of interest.







What Passengers Have To Gain From The Gogo – Intelsat Deal


Joanna Bailey

November 19, 2020


The impact of the pandemic has seen some big changes in the inflight connectivity space. Companies have shrunk, and bankruptcies have taken place as providers struggle to stay afloat. It came as no big surprise that Gogo was encumbered and forced to sell off its commercial aviation arm. But will the purchase by bankrupt satellite operator Intelsat mean better services for passengers? Let’s take a look.


Relieving the debt burden

One of the biggest moves in the inflight connectivity space this year has been the sale of leading IFC provider Gogo’s commercial airline division. Liquidity issues forced the company’s hand in the deal, selling the arm to Intelsat at a fire-sale price.


Intelsat itself recently filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection but had positioned this move as a positive outcome, allowing it the time and breadth to restructure itself financially. At the time, CEO of Intelsat Stephen Spengler said that,


“Our success has come despite being burdened in recent years by substantial legacy debt. Now is the time to change that.â€


The unburdening of its debt left Intelsat free to benefit from a refarming of spectrum in the US, but seemingly also in a position to take on Gogo’s commercial aviation arm for just $400 million. What does this new partnership mean for airlines, and can passengers expect a better inflight WiFi service as a result?


Why Intelsat bought Gogo

In a recent interview for Capacity Media, Spengler discussed the move to buy Gogo and what it will mean going forward. He said the deal is a strategic transaction that will add long-term value to his business. He noted that the inflight connectivity sector was expected to grow by double digits annually for the next decade and that Intelsat was keen to be a part of that growth.


The purchase will create what Spengler calls the ‘number one vertically integrated IFC provider in the world’. He noted that the combination of Intelsat’s global network and Gogo’s onboard antenna technology will make for a powerful partnership and meaningful enhancements to service capabilities.


The Intelsat CEO is targeting a ‘living room-like’ IFC experience for airline passengers, something that has largely been out of the reach of airlines to date. While avoiding expanding on any specific future plans, given that the Gogo transaction will not be finalized until Q1 of 2021, he stated that there is a firm belief that the partnership will see uptake by airlines all over the world.


Can passengers expect better inflight WiFi?

In terms of access, the deal with Intelsat will absolutely bring better WiFi connections for Gogo’s airline passengers. To date, Gogo has leveraged its ground-based ATG network to provide connectivity across contiguous North America while supplementing that with satellite connectivity from SES and Intelsat.



Going forward, Gogo will maintain ownership of its ATG network but will lease capacity to Intelsat. The ATG system is due an upgrade in 2021, which will bring 5G capabilities to the network and add capacity for passengers. On the satellite side, we could see Intelsat pointing more capacity at Gogo equipped planes, as it strives to please its new airline customers and acquire more business in the sector.


However, Intelsat needs to remember its other customers too. It has deals in place with Global Eagle and Panasonic Aero, which must not see a detriment due to this new deal. John Wade, Gogo’s president of Commercial Aviation, is confident the overall outcome will be positive for everyone, telling Aviation Today,


“Intelsat has a great repertoire of satellites that give it global access. With its planned roadmap to the future, that’s only going to get stronger and better. That means we’re going to be able to bring very competitive, very high caliber, high service level in-flight WiFi to the world’s airlines.â€


The acquisition is due to wrap up early in 2021. From there, we’ll have to wait and see if the partnership does indeed deliver on its promises.



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Not the complete article, but :


An average flight on a Delta Air Lines 737-800 costs $2,744 per hour. The plane burns 850 gallons per hour. Fuel costs $1,275 based on Jet-A fuel costing Delta $1.50 a gallon. Two pilots and five flight attendants costs around $500 an hour. Direct maintenance on the airframe is around $220, engines are around $130, and maintenance burden is around $150, for a total of $500. In addition to this cost is depreciation of $373 and aircraft rental of $96. An average flight on an American Airlines 737-800 costs $2,180 per hour. The plane burns 850 gallons per hour. Fuel costs $1,028 based on Jet-A fuel costing American $1.21 a gallon. A cockpit crew of two along with five flight attendants costs around $465 an hour. Direct maintenance on the airframe is around $200, engines are around $110, and maintenance burden is around $135, for a total of $315. Also added to this cost is depreciation of $259 and aircraft rental of $113.




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Looks like a big “seller†sitting in the depth putting a cap on things at the moment.

I’d suggest that there aren’t too many shareholders with a holding of that size.

If nothing else, he/she is forcing sellers under $0.485 in order to trade out.


Love a good conspiracy, so maybe the “seller†is also a buyer just like a shark driving fish to the shore??

Maybe they just need out to finance Christmas? :mellow:




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