March 2005 
Volume 03, Issue 10 
Industry Wrap

Airports worldwide working to take A380

As Airbus prepares for initial flights of the A380, airports worldwide, including several in the United States, are readying for the arrival of the massive aircraft.

According to Aviation Week & Space Technology magazine, about 20 hubs around Europe, North America and the Pacific Rim will be ready to handle Airbus A380s by mid-2006, or no later than 2007.

That list includes airports in Bangkok, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, New York, London, Los Angeles, Montreal, Paris and Tokyo, as well as Auckland, New Zealand, and Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, an Airbus official told Aviation Week. And another 40 are expected to follow by the end of the decade.


Boeing to sell Rocketdyne and Wichita Division

Boeing's forthcoming sales of its commercial-aircraft factories in Kansas and Oklahoma and its Rocketdyne rocket-engine business reflect the company's continuing focus on large-scale systems integration, aerospace industry observers said.

Boeing said last month it would sell its Commercial Airplanes facilities and assets in Wichita, Kan., and Tulsa and McAlester, Okla., to Onex Corp. of Canada for about $900 million, transfer of certain liabilities and "long-term supply agreements that provide Boeing ongoing cost savings," Boeing said in a statement. Boeing Integrated Defense Systems operations in Wichita and Oklahoma are not included in this transaction.

Separately, Boeing said it agreed to sell its Rocketdyne Propulsion & Power business to Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies company, for about $700 million in cash. Both transactions are subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.



DOD Adjusts Plans for Missile Defense Operations

The U.S. Defense Department has shelved plans for "around-the-clock" missile defense operations in favor of an emergency alert status, according to Defense Daily. Initial operations, when announced, would be more modest than originally anticipated, sources told the newsletter.

The system still is expected to become operational, but the Pentagon has switched from a plan that would have placed it on 24-hour alert—called "initial defensive operations"—and instead is opting for "limited defensive operations," which would operate only in emergencies, the publication said Boeing is the prime contractor for the GMD system.

L-M, Northrop Grumman Acquiring Government Info Tech Providers

Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman's acquisitions last month of government information technology providers continued a trend among major defense contractors to diversify their business further into government services, Defense Daily said.

Lockheed Martin said it would purchase The SYTEX Group Inc., a provider of IT, engineering and logistics services. Northrop Grumman bought Integic Corp., majority-owned by Xerox. About 90 percent of Ingegic's sales are government related, Defense Daily said. Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin are among the top federal IT contractors, Defense Daily said.


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