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Articles by Ben Sandilands

MH370 suspense as France stays silent, and Malaysia says strange things

As of tomorrow it will be a full two weeks since forensic testing of a claimed wing section from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 began at the behest of a criminal probe in France in a military aviation laboratory in Toulouse.

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Surprise! Concrete slabs found in Maldives not from MH370

Multiple news reports from Malaysia are quoting its transport minister Liow Tiong Lai  as saying debris found in the Maldives did not come from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

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Rising power of leasing drives Airbus changes in Australia

When Isabelle Floret took charge of the Airbus the commercial team in Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and Hong Kong the European plane maker was briefing the aviation media about its interest in seeing a balance in the market place between the leasing companies and airlines. 

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Move over Sydney-Dallas, here comes Dubai-Panama City

This won’t cause consternation in Qantas, but its bragging rights about the world’s longest scheduled airline service with an A380 between Sydney and Dallas Fort Worth are about to be usurped.

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The AirAsia X factor comes to the too often ashen skies over Bali

It’s quite possible that the expansion of AirAsiaX’s reach to the Sydney-Denpasar route from October announced today will do more damage to Jetstar, VirginAustralia and the planned Tigerair Australia flights to Bali than the all too frequent eruptions from the nearby Mt Raung volcano. 

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Why not make all Qantas turbo-prop flights Propstars?

Jetstar has previewed its upcoming turbo-prop operations in New Zealand by wheeling its first Q300 in its livery out of the paint shop in Townsville.

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MH17 missile parts possibly found, but why was jet there?

“Possible” is a word that dogs the twin disasters involving Malaysia Airlines. Possible parts of a Russian BUK missile have been found amid the wreckage of MH17, death toll 298. A wing part, possibly indeed almost certainly, from MH370, death toll 239, has been recovered from La Reunion island, in the west Indian Ocean.

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Emirates keeps eating the competition in A380 sized bites

The stresses Emirates with its A380s puts on its competitors, and ally Qantas, continues to grow, this time by converting a daily 777-300ER from Melbourne to Singapore and on to Dubai to the larger sized Airbus from 1 March 2016.

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MH370, Is team Dive or team Glide right, and why it matters

Did MH370 dive to its doom or did it glide to a controlled ditching in the Indian Ocean, and, was the missing Malaysia Airlines 777 taken by a terrorist attack?

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Tigerair to get roomiest economy seats in an Australian jet!

In a no doubt unintended consequence, Virgin Australia is planning to transfer some 737-800s to its low cost brand Tigerair that will have the most legroom in economy class in a main line single aisle jet in the country.

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Virgin Australia defers jets keeps cost advantage over Qantas

Virgin Australia has pulled a number of levers to engineer what is the most confident guidance of a return to profitability it has given in the 15 years since the launch of the original Virgin Blue.

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Virgin Australia turns Tiger loose on Bali in route changes

Tigerair Australia will take over some Virgin Australia 737-800s and fly a bunch of routes to Bali that its full service parent is leaving in a major realignment of the groups international product offerings.

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Emirates lifting A380 flights to UK to 70 per week

For those who think downsizing from A380s to 777s would make sense, Emirates will lift its daily A380 frequency into the UK to ten from 1 January, eight of them to two London airports, and two to Manchester.

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MH370 debris search chokes on a pile of misinformation

Things are in a mess in the search for MH370 wreckage on La Reunion island this morning, at least in terms of official statements.

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More MH370 debris on La Reunion island includes seat, window parts

Malaysia’s transport minister Liow Tiong Lai says more MH370 debris has been found on La Reunion island including parts of windows, seat cushions and aluminium foil.

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IG review says torn MH370 flaperon implies mid air break-up

The Independent Group of scientists studying the MH370 disappearance thinks that the 777 flaperon found on La Reunion island was torn off the wing of the jet after it ran out of fuel and before it struck the ocean.

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Moon-Earth transit as seen from a million miles away

Stuck in traffic? Packed into a peak hour train?  Here’s a different view of your typical day from a million miles away, when suddenly the Moon comes into view.

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MH370 criminal inquiry in France seeks candour in KL

More than a wing part has surfaced in the MH370 saga overnight.

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