Mon, Dec 29, 2008
New Lives For Old Widebodies
B/E Aerospace announced last week it has received a supplemental
type certificate (STC) from the FAA which authorizes the company to
convert Airbus A300-600 passenger aircraft to freighters. The STC
was awarded to B/E Aerospace's Flight Structures unit (FSI).
The company previously announced it had been awarded a contract
by China Southern Airlines to convert six of its A300-600 passenger
aircraft to freighters. B/E Aerospace expects the six aircraft
program for China Southern Airlines to have a value of
approximately $45 million.
B/E Aerospace has been responsible for the engineering design
and STC certification of the Airbus A300-600 passenger-to-freighter
conversion and will be responsible for manufacturing the required
passenger-to-freighter conversion kits. B/E Aerospace's MRO
partner, Guangzhou Aircraft Maintenance Engineering Company
(GAMECO), a Guangzhou-based joint venture of China Southern
Airlines and Hutchinson Whampoa (China) Ltd., will provide the
touch labor and kit installation.
"The A300-600 STC marks a significant milestone in our
passenger-to-freighter conversion business. We look forward to
working with our launch customer China Southern Airlines," stated
Mr. Amin J. Khoury, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of B/E
"The A300-600 aircraft is an excellent candidate for
passenger-to-freighter conversion due to its superior operating
economics. According to Air Cargo Management Group, 'the medium
wide-body freighter segment, (the A300 and the B767), has been the
fastest growing segment of the freighter market over the past
decade." The A300-600 takes standard size containers and can carry
almost double the LD3 containers that the competing B767 can carry.
There are more than 100 A300-600 passenger aircraft in service,
most of which are nearing the end of their useful lives as
passenger aircraft," concluded Mr. Khoury.
Mr. Dong Su Guang, Vice President of China Southern Airlines
Co., Ltd. and Chairman of GAMECO commented, "China Southern
Airlines, GAMECO and B/E Aerospace working together have
demonstrated a world class capability in achieving this milestone.
We look forward to continuing our partnership as we convert our
A300-600 passenger aircraft to freighters."
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