Of the other two Hong Kong carriers flying Trent engines—Dragonair and Hong Kong Airlines—only Dragonair is projected to require overhauls during the period, an estimated 16 overhauls in total at a cost of about $54 million. As R-R notes in its fact sheets on the engine, Cathay, together with sister airline Dragonair, is the leading Trent 700 operator, with 48 Trent 700-powered Airbus A330s in service and another 19 of the engines on firm order.
Although Cathay represents the largest single overhaul requirement for any operator, mainland China represents the largest overall market, with 116 overhauls expected worth an estimated $382.7 million. Air China and China Eastern Airlines are expected to require the lion’s share, at 38 and 36 overhauls, respectively, during the forecast period, worth $126 million and $118.6 million. China Southern Airlines needs 28 overhauls worth $92 million and Hainan is projected to require 10 at just under $33 million.
Asian operators make up 48.5% of the market by number of projected overhauls, and 48.2% of the projected value. Aviation Week projects the three-year overhaul market value for the Trent 700 in Asian markets at $984.4 million through the first part of 2015.
Along with the major airframers, R-R agrees that Asia remains the largest growth opportunity for the next two decades. In its recent market outlook, R-R forecast that Asian air traffic will be double that of either the North American or European markets by 2031. Asia eclipsed North America as the largest single air traffic market in 2010. Growth is widely expected to balloon in the long-haul markets, particularly in the developing regions of Asia and Latin America, rather than in the mature North American and European markets, which are uniformly expected to grow only modestly during the next few years.
Other significant Trent 700 operators include Fly Asian Xpress in Malaysia, projected to require 36 overhauls during the forecast period at nearly $118 million, just under 6% of the overall three-year market; Germany’s Lufthansa, accounting for 30 overhauls or just under 5% of the market at $103 million; Garuda Indonesia with 22 overhauls; and Aeroflot and Swiss International Air Line, with 20 each.
Work In Americas
There will be significant overhaul work in the Americas as well. Air Canada is projected to require 16 overhauls during the period at just under $56 million. Half of those are expected during the next 12 months or so, with the balance in the second half of 2014 and the first half of 2015. Canada’s Air Transat comes in with a projected 10 overhauls at $26.6 million, all near the end of the three-year period.
Like Air Canada, Avianca in Colombia is also projected to require 16 overhauls, at $52.5 million, and US Airways is expected to require 14 overhauls, beginning next year, at a cost of just over $45 million. Hawaiian Airlines is seen requiring six overhauls at just over $19 million between the second half of 2014 and the first half of 2015.
It is unknown which of these airlines, if any, have installed or intend to install the Enhanced Performance, or EP, Trent kit, which incorporates many of the features of the EP standard for new-build 700s that R-R introduced three years ago. R-R does not identify which customers bought the retrofit kit, although the enginemaker reports that 12 carriers so far have purchased it.
Though the EP kit does not turn the older Trent 700 into today’s build, it comes pretty close. Like the new-build engine, the EP kit features the aerodynamically enhanced compressor blade shape R-R developed for the latest Trent 1000 and Trent XWB engines. Elliptical leading edge profiles improve efficiency for these blades, which are installed on all of the engines’ intermediate- and high-pressure compressor blades. High-pressure turbine blades, plus the high-pressure and intermediate-pressure nozzle guide vanes, are super-polished, and there are other HP compressor quality improvements.