Who is Suren?

Suren Ratwatte, FRAeS, is an accomplished pilot, airline executive and aviation researcher.

He became one of the world’s first Airbus A380 Captains, was previously SriLankan Airlines’ CEO and has also been featured in several books and academic publications.

  • “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

    The leader of the Bolshevik revolution in Russia was of course talking about those fateful days in 1917 when the Romanov Empire was overthrown. Lenin would barely recognize today’s world and he could never have imagined that an invisible microbe would create even greater changes than his revolution did, just over a hundred years later. […]

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  • The Lockheed TriStar – a forgotten marvel

    The Lockheed TriStar – a forgotten marvel

    The Lockheed L-1011 TriStar – forever the bridesmaid, never the bride Sri Lankans of a certain age will recall the TriStar fondly. It was the flagship of national carrier Air Lanka at a time when the country was exiting a long period of austerity with hopes of ushering in the dawn of prosperity. The glory […]

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  • Concorde – a tribute

    Concorde – a tribute

    Aviation enthusiasts have a special place in their hearts for the Anglo-French Concorde. The world’s most famous supersonic airliner with its slender fuselage, huge delta-shaped wing and drooped nose (to improve visibility during take-off and landing) all working together in gorgeous symmetry to cruise at a speed in excess of Mach 2 (twice the speed […]

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  • The Empty Sky

    The Empty Sky

    What is the post-COVID future for aviation? First – a thank you. The responses to the last few columns have been great. Perhaps people have more time to read and respond thoughtfully, now that the world has slowed down? Which brings us to the subject of this week’s piece: what will the future look like […]

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  • Re-write the Freedoms of the Air

    Re-write the Freedoms of the Air

    A new world order? As I write this column the street outside my window is eerily quiet for a weekday morning. We too are in ‘lockdown’, and the only noise heard is a gentle sighing sound as the economy collapses. COVID-19 is proving to be a seminal event in modern history. One that will change […]

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  • Airline Apocalypse?

    Airline Apocalypse?

    Last man standing The world has belatedly woken up to the consequences of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic now upon us. No precedents The first of my columns that raised awareness of this issue was written in early February. At that time I anticipated that the impact would be much worse than the SARS epidemic, with […]

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  • Unknown unknowns and COVID-19

    Unknown unknowns and COVID-19

    Unknown Unknowns When Donald Rumsfeld was Defense Secretary of the USA he made famous the phrase incorporating this article’s two-word title, at a press conference in February 2002. That was just prior to the US-led invasion of Iraq, and it was said in response to a question about the lack of evidence linking Iraq to […]

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  • Air Asia X – a response to COVID19

    Air Asia X – a response to COVID19

    AirAsia Unlimited Pass – Insanity or brilliance? February 29, 2020 – ‘Leap Day’ and time for yet another promotion by the beleaguered airline industry. AirAsia X, a long-haul, low-cost carrier (LCC) based in Kuala Lumpur (KL), Malaysia, has grabbed the headlines by offering an ‘Unlimited Pass’ for a selected few of its frequent flyers. That’s […]

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  • A380 in line service – written and published in 2010

    A380 in line service – written and published in 2010

    A38O in Service-One Year and Counting by A Double-Decker Bus Driver (In Airways, December 2008 & January 2009, the author described the Airbus A380 training program: in the classroom, simulator, and ‘hands-on’ flying. Now, with the first year of line flights in his log book, this captain discusses the techniques, requisites, and his experiences and […]

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  • MH370 – the search must continue

    MH370 – the search must continue

    MH370 – six years on it is still a mystery Media frenzy over the disappearance of the Boeing 777 is reaching a peak again, as it does annually. SKY News Australia has just released a two-part documentary seeking to explain their viewpoint to the public. Using a number of ‘experts’ including Tony Abbott (who was […]

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