IAI has secured a 15-year partnership agreement with Ascent Aviation Services, designating Ascent’s Marana facilities to conduct the necessary modifications on the twinjet aircraft type.
IAI Eyes 777 Cargo Conversion in Arizona
The conversion project will encompass establishing two dedicated 777-300ER conversion lines, for which Ascent will construct two spacious widebody hangars. Pre-construction activities for the hangars are already in progress.
IAI has been actively progressing with its ‘Big Twin’ conversion initiative for this aircraft, officially naming the freighter variant as the 777-300ERSF.
The company has outlined its strategy to establish multiple modification facilities for this aircraft type. In a significant milestone, the inaugural 777-300ERSF conducted its inaugural flight from Tel Aviv in March of this year.
IAI anticipates obtaining certification for the freighter variant from the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Israeli civil aviation regulatory authorities this year. The certification process is currently in its concluding phases.
The 777-300ERSF, equipped with General Electric GE90 engines, will have the capability to transport payloads weighing up to 100 metric tons.”
Boaz Levy, the CEO of IAI, emphasizes that the partnership with Ascent demonstrates the company’s trust in Ascent’s capacity to adhere to the prescribed schedule and conduct the initial conversion in the upcoming year.
Levy notes that this collaboration serves as a robust and direct extension of the numerous prosperous cooperative arrangements that have been established between IAI and various US companies.
“IAI asserts that establishing remote passenger-to-freighter conversion sites across the globe is necessary in anticipation of the rising demand for long-haul-capable widebody freighter aircraft.”
David Querio, the CEO of Ascent, anticipates that the partnership with IAI will generate enduring prosperity for the aviation community in the Tucson region.
He highlights that Ascent, a specialist in commercial aircraft maintenance, will enhance its capacity to accommodate up to three widebody aircraft as a result of this collaboration. Querio underscores that this agreement will contribute to stability and create “hundreds” of highly skilled job opportunities in the area.
He adds, “This expansion of our service portfolio aligns with our ongoing mission to become the preferred world-class Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) provider for our clients.”
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