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Archive for the ‘aerospace industry’ Category
The first good look at a planet generally yields surprising new discoveries and the Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging satellite – or MESSENGER, thanks to the acronym lettersmiths that work at NASA – has been no exception.
Expectations were initially low, ranking the Sun’s sidekick about as interesting as Mr. Moon, but MESSENGER is sending back some truly fascinating information about Mercury. The first point of interest is that six percent of the planet appears to be covered in lava flood plains, meaning it might give us some insight on a similar phase in Earth’s steamy past, and there is also evidence of a “previously unknown geological process” that created mysterious hollows on the planet’s surface (pictured above).
So, suffice it to say, thanks to the information now being garnered by MESSENGER, you can throw out what you learned in grade school about our buddy Mercury, but since it’s likely you were either making fake nails out of Elmer’s glue or shooting spit wads, these planetary revelations shouldn’t be that big of an adjustment.
For the nine or 10 people besides me that follow China’s commercial aerospace sector, Reinhardt Krause posted an excellent summary on how China’s plan to build its first big passenger plane promises to reshape its fast-growing aviation market and what’s at stake for suppliers. Here’s my take on how it impacts Boeing and Airbus.
The Sino Sitch
–China’s aviation market is booming, with passenger traffic growing 20% a year, aggressive capacity and fleet expansion and a whirlwind of consolidation activity.
–Airline stocks, such as Hong Kong-listed Air China, China Southern and China Eastern, have rebounded strongly in 2010.
–The country will open 10 new airports this year, according to the Civil Aviation Administration of China. The CAAC expects 250 airports by 2020, up from 176 at year-end.