Hello, hello! I can’t believe it’s been two weeks since I’ve stepped foot into Germany. There’s just so much to do, but so little time to do it. I guess I need to make these last two weeks count.
After a very long, an rather unexpected hiatus, I’m back! This time, I’m coming to you all the way from Berlin, Germany where I’ll be spending the entire month of July doing Electrical Engineering classes! Me and approximately 18 other Embry-Riddle students will be studying with one of Riddle’s finest professors: Dr. Ilteris Demirkiran.
Once Aircraft Interiors Expo and the World Travel Catering Expo were over, my friend and I had spare time in the afternoon to visit Hamburg. We used the Hamburg U-Bahn underground and headed to Miniatur Wunderland.
Opened in 2000, Miniatur Wunderland is the world’s largest model railway and also one of the most popular permanent exhibition in Northern Germany. As of today, there are nine sections of the Wunderland which are Hartz/Central Germany, Knuffingen, Alps/Austria, Hamburg, United States, Scandinavia, Switzerland, Knuffingen Airport and Italy. The work is far from over as the team is working on expanding the exhibition thru the following years to come.
I personally thought the airport was awesome. The designers paid attention to every detail. One thing that is amazing about this airport is that you can visually see the aircraft takeoff and land on the runway. Additionally, the planes can move around the airport and even head to a gate. Once the aircraft is parked at a gate, the jet bridge will move and align with the aircraft’s main door.
Even the baggage loading vehicles and the catering truck pictured above can move around the airport. The airport, the planes and the small trucks all had lights. You could even see the orange blinker of a truck that was turning left or right at an intersection.
It was cool to see the actual schedule of the airport published. While looking at the schedule, you could anticipate what aircraft and airline would be the next departure and arrival.
Even though we spent most of our time at the model airport, we managed to visit the nine sections of the exhibition. There was a lot to see!
Pictured above is the Grand Canyon that can be found in the state of Nevada. It was fascinating to see the lively city of Las Vegas at night.
Visitors can find railways in multiple sections of the exhibition. Like the airplanes, the trains move around the cities from station to station.
It was intriguing to see “behind the scenes” of how everything worked to make this Miniatur Wunderland an attractive place to stop by. I believe these employees were controlling and monitoring some of the trains, cars, boats, airplanes, aerial tramways, chairlifts, etc. I am sure there is automation involved but they need humans to make everything work perfectly.
I really enjoyed spending a few hours in this “miniature world.” If you visit Hamburg, I would totally recommend you to go take a look. Tickets are only €9 per person!
Until next time!
Last week, I was in Germany to attend Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX) in Hamburg Messe. The event welcomed more than 550 exhibitors from all around the world. Every year, more than 14,000 aviation professionals, airlines and international press go to Hamburg for AIX. The event is huge and covers approximately 24,000 metres square (258,334 feet square) of flooring. As you can see below, the large floor plan includes different buildings that are a walking distance from each other.
Below is a list of the major products you can find at Aircraft Interiors Expo:
- Seats (First, Business Premium Economy and Economy)
- Seats fabrics
- Seats armrests
- Seat power ports (110V and USB)
- Racks that hold seats on the floor
- Carpets for flooring
- Cabin lighting
- Galley carts
- Inflight Entertainment (IFE)
- And more!
Major News Announced
- Zodiac Aerospace unveiled an economy seat for the Boeing 777X.
- Hawaiian Airlines showed their future A321neo cabin interior by JPA Design
- Recaro presented the Smart Cabin Reconfiguration for the A320 family. It revealed a quick way to swap seats between higher-density economy and more spacious Eurobusiness seats.
- Airbus announced a new cabin version of its jumbo jet to accommodate an additional 80 seats.
- ATR partnered with Geven to offer an increased seat width from 17″ to a more comfortable 18″.
- Molon Labe updates its Slide-Slip Seat: the aisle seat slips over the middle seat for expedited boarding process.
- Altran presented an autonomous robot trolley that can drive itself through the aisle.
- HAECO Cabin Solutions offers a cocktail tray and PDE holder that will be offered on the Vector premium seat.
World Travel Catering Expo (WTCE)
On the other side of the road was held the World Traveling Catering Expo (WTCE). On-site, visitors had the opportunity to try and sample anything from munchies to First class level cuisine. Many of the major airline catering providers (gategroup, dnata and LSG Group) were at the event. There were also many smaller companies I have never heard before.
There were many small firms that provided important products for the food catering industry, such as the aluminum foil that cover the hot meals in economy. You could also find different sizes of aluminum containers for meals, plastic cups for drinks and various sizes and shapes of cutlery. There were also providers of amenity kits for premium cabins, as well as companies that design crew uniforms.
While walking, I saw a cleaning machine that was spinning vertically to clean galley carts. It sprayed water and soap and the centrifugal force disinfected the beverage trolleys for their next flight. It was pretty amazing to watch!
As an #avgeek, it was impressive to see all those providers. There are so many that you would not think at first. I definitely hope to go back next year for the 2018 edition!
Until next time!
Early this week, I travelled to Europe with my friend to attend Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, Germany. Before we arrived in Hamburg, we spent two days in Berlin to visit the city. Here are the cool things we did during our stay:
The first activity we did once we arrived in Berlin was to visit the Victory Column (pictured on the right). From the top of the monument, you are able to view the city. It is located in the centre of a roundabout very close to the Tiergarten, one of the most popular park in Berlin.
East Side Gallery
The following morning, we took the U-Bahn (subway) and headed to see the Berlin Wall, which is also known as the East Side Gallery. The 1,316 metre (4,318 feet) long section of the wall is covered with various paintings. Many portions of the wall have been damaged by erosion with time and graffitis since some parts are not protected with a fence.
This is the city’s only ancient gate remaining. The construction of this landmark started in 1788 and was completed in 1791. What is interesting about it is that it is aligned with the Berlin Victory Column. You can see the tip of it on the picture below.
Checkpoint Charlie was the checkpoint between the American and Soviet sectors of Berlin. After the construction of the Berlin Wall, it primarily served as a crossing point between East Berlin and West Berlin during the Cold War.
Berlin Tempelhof Airport
This was probably one of my favorite part of Berlin. The Tempelhof Airport is an abandoned airport that ceased operations in 2008. The airfield has two parallel runways (09R/27R and 09L/27L) with a length of more than 6,000 feet. It only had one taxiway that was basically circled the runways.
We rented bikes for about one hour and rolled down on the runways and taxiways! We saw a Douglas C-54 of the USAAF parked under the terminal (pictured above) and a Let L-410 Turbojet that was used for fire training purposes. The hour flew by really fast!
After our passage through the abandoned airport, we headed to the city’s main railway station (Berlin Hauptbahnhof) to take a train to Hamburg. In my next post, I will talk about Aircraft Interiors Expo 2017 in Hamburg!
This is probably the only blog from an Embry-Riddle student who started two first days at this University, 5 years apart.
Sometimes it’s hard to imagine that one year ago, I was a Key West trolley tour guide. I entertained tourists with facts of the island and repeated the same corny jokes to them every day, sometimes with a few originals. Chances are good that if you visited Key West and rode on an orange and green trolley over the past year, I was your bus driver and guide. I also drove the Key West haunted tours, a type of meet and greet with Key West characters like Robert the doll as well as the other types of spirits….not necessarily the ones found in haunted houses. I found myself living on the island by accident. I went to be a dog sitter for two weeks and ended staying almost a year! You might say I caught what the locals call the “Keys Disease” and it’s hard to resist. People come for a visit but never leave. It’s said on the island that if you show up to work every day, you have a job. If two weeks later you’re still showing up on time, they’ll make you the manager. Well, sure enough, the dog left town with its owner and I stayed. As well as being a tour guide, I worked other side jobs such as newspaper delivery boy, bakeshop dishwasher, and event security (a.k.a. bouncer).
The island life was a relaxing and good one. It is hard to resist the sunniest place in Florida with the least amount of rain. It ‘s truly Paradise except, endless renditions of Jimmy Buffett songs blaring down from Duval Street. One day I woke up with one more hangover and realized I wasn’t moving forward with my life. It was time for me to progress forward on my flight plan for life.
This was the culmination of a restlessness that I tried to resolve, and it brought me through many different experiences. These included several semesters at a state university, a shopkeeper in South Beach, and an unpaid Internship for Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in DC. This was right after I withdrew myself from Embry Riddle; I wanted to try something different in life. But my passions drew me back.
On August 27, 2012, my second first day of college began. Once again excited to be making progress, living in campus dorms, and starting from where I had left off, but more focused on my degree: Aviation Business Administration. In one week, I will be curing my desires, dusting off the backpack and train hopping across Europe to appease my wandering soul. In one month, I will be attending classes with the Study Abroad program in Berlin, and in one year, I will be an Embry-Riddle alumnus. It’s a long way from the old island life, and it feels great!