2023 Code Sharing Challenge!
Posted 31 December 2022 - 07:12 AM
Posted 04 January 2023 - 04:21 PM
Posted 05 January 2023 - 02:30 PM
Charter + Utilities - Mirneftaero
Aviakompaniya Mirneftaero is an airline based in Novy Urengoy, Russia. It operates passenger and cargo charters around key cities in the Russian Arctic, mainly with the purpose of shuttling the personnel of Mirneft (Global Oil) to towns and cities involved in the extraction of oil in the Arctic oil fields in the Barents and Kara Seas. The airline was founded in 2001 and presently operates a fleet of five Sukhoi Superjet 100s. Occasionally, the charter airline sells surplus seats on its flights, but due to the high prices and remoteness of the destinations its revenue passengers mainly consist of local avgeeks.
I recently found out about the interesting logistics operations behind Gazprom and other Russian utilities companies and that led me to research more FIFO operations around the world, particularly in Russia, Australia and Canada. I wanted to make something that I hadn't done before so I picked the Charter and Utilities sectors for a bit of a challenge.
Posted 06 January 2023 - 02:38 PM
Scheduled Commercial + Auditoriums - Dulles Skylounge by Valiant
When drawing up plans to rebuild its main terminal at Dulles International (IAD), architects came to the conclusion that Valiant's primary lounge used by Business and First class passengers would need to be totally demolished to make way for upgrades and improvements. With this news, Valiant began considering options to retain a high quality lounge for its patrons at Dulles during the construction. Their solution was unconventional but extremely interesting. Instead of finding a space within the terminal to build a temporary lounge, Valiant would create their own space outside of the terminal and shuttle first class and business passengers to it. In 2016, Valiant purchased a recently retired 747-400, repainted it in a slightly modified iteration of the Valiant scheme, and flew it to Dulles where it was parted out on a remote stand for several months. Much of the interior was removed as were the engines (which were replaced with end of life dummies). Later, the aircraft was towed to a less remote stand close to the terminal where a significant hole was cut in the aircraft's rear fuselage and a large tower containing an elevator and emergency stairs was installed near the rear of the aircraft. The main floor of the aircraft, featured in the map below, contains a bar and lounge marketed as Club 74, A full service restaurant with a buffet called the Loudoun Restaurant (after the county in which Dulles is located), a conference room called the Morris Room (in honour of the family which founded Valiant), and gender segregated wheelchair accessible restrooms. The structure's upper deck features a seating area with couches and various chairs that provide a panoramic view of the airport tarmac. Below the main deck is a kitchen for employees as well as shower facilities, gender-neutral restrooms, various small seating areas for customers, and certain utilities (mainly air conditioning). The Skylounge is connected to the airport's electrical and water systems. When it is open and it is not raining, customers board the Skylounge with a set of truck mounted airstairs, but employees and disabled customers use the elevator located at the rear. Since opening in 2017, the lounge has been very well reviewed by airline critics and passengers alike. The excellent views and facilities it offers makes up for the relative inconvenience of requiring a short shuttle ride to access. Valiant was intentionally ambiguous as to whether the Skylounge would be temporary. The new terminal floor plan included a large area which could have been fitted as a lounge if the Skylounge and its associated schedule prove to be uneconomical. However, reports suggest that as construction nears its conclusion on the new terminal, the space has been used as an office complex and staff break room - suggesting that Valiant does not plan to replace the Skylounge in the immediate future.
Posted 06 January 2023 - 10:14 PM
Posted 13 January 2023 - 02:19 AM
Suncoast Airlines was founded in 1992 after starting operations as McAllen Airlines in 1983. The airline started operations with two bases in Miami and Tampa and with fleet of DC-9 and MD-80 aircraft.
N808NK, built in 1988 for a Chinese airline, was delivered to Suncoast in 1999. It primarily made runs up and down the east coast out of Miami. It was the first aircraft painted in the airline's new 2003 livery. It wore this until it was withdrawn from service in 2010.
N808NK was stored at Miami Opa-Locka until it was acquired by the Floridian Recreational Scuba Organization in late 2011. The FRSO, for short, was interested in starting a campaign that would encourage airlines to donate retired airplanes to the FRSO so that they could be sunk as artificial reefs. N808NK was to the used as the first aircraft for the project. The aircraft made a final flight to Jacksonville and was stripped of any valuables or parts that would be harmful to divers. It also was repainted into a fictional scheme, bearing the planned sinking date of 2012.
On February 3rd, 2012, the Florida Wildlife Commission approved the aircraft to be sunk off the coast of Jacksonville. 3 months later, N808NK was craned into the St. John's River with six lift bags attached to its fuselage. It was towed 25 miles northeast to its designated site, before the floatation bags were released and the aircraft sank tail first amongst a crowd of small boats.
The aircraft, over time, began to get covered in marine life, becoming the home of several schools of fish. It became a popular dive site in Jacksonville with at least 100 dive trips per year. In 2016, Hurricane Matthew swept threw Florida's eastern coast, and right over where the aircraft lay. The aircraft was picked up by the shifting water and moved 90 feet north, repeatedly striking the ground as it did. Eventually, the right wing spar broke, causing the aircraft to roll over on its port side. A month afterward, the plane was righted. The right wing and tail were damaged and posed a threat to divers. Both were detached and placed a few meters away from the fuselage.
Today, the aircraft is a popular and iconic dive site near Jacksonville teeming with marine life. The FRSO promoted the Airreef campaign more after the sinking. However, the project never went forward past the sinking of N808NK, and by 2017 the airreef.com domain had gone defunct. Despite this, the Airreef project has proved that there are more environmentally friendly ways to dispose of planes rather than the cutter's torch.
Man won't fly for a million years – to build a flying machine would require the combined and continuous efforts of mathematicians and mechanics for 1-10 million years.
Posted 03 February 2023 - 11:26 AM
Regarded as one of the greatest rock bands in not only the United States, but also in the entire world, The TriStars hail from Palmdale, California and were formed in 1976. The band got their name from Lockheed's L-1011 "Tristar". Founding member Dave "Dale" Kirkhill was inspired as a keen avgeek by the nearby Lockheed plant, especially being awed and fascinated by the L-1011s that came out of the plant. The TriStars rose to fame after the launch of their second album, Sunny SoCal Sally, with the biggest hit being "Flying High". Flying High rose to number 2 on the US charts, and into the top 5 in 13 other countries. The album was released in 1978, and they did a US/Canada/Mexico tour to accompany it in 1978/1979. But as the band rose in popularity worldwide, they decided that they were going to need to do a world tour. Announced on 20 May 1979, with around 200 shows across 33 countries, The 1980 World Tour was going to be one of the largest tours ever by that point, so they needed a plane that could get them around. They rung up HollyJets Ltd of Los Angeles, a charter airline that offers charter flights for touring bands and similar stuff. They had recently taken delivery of a white-tail Lockheed L-1011-500 originally set for delivery for a major American airline, and it was a match made in heaven. The TriStar's first global tour, flying around in a Tristar. It's like bread and butter! So obviously, it was the plane that was picked. They agreed to have the full white livery replaced with a striking livery that would turn heads. And this is what they came up with. It sure is striking all right! With the first concert of the tour kicking off on 17 January 1980 in Los Angeles, California, the 1980 World Tour would go on to be one of the most successful tours of all time. It remains as their second best performing tour, only just behind their 2017-present reunification tour, the first tour since the mid 2000s. The band has gone quite between 2008 and 2015 as they wanted a break from band life. In 2016 the Reunification World Tour was announced which has been going on since 2017 (except for 2020/2021 where there were no shows except for the start of 2020). Today, The TriStars are still one of the greatest selling rock bands of all time, and continue to sell out stadiums worldwide.
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