DGCA approves ETOPS for 29 IndiGo A320neo, A321neo
The Indian Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has approved extended-range twin-engine operations certification to twenty-nine A320-200neo and A321-200neo aircraft powered by Pratt & Whitney engines that IndiGo Airlines (6E, Delhi Int'l) intends to operate, the Press Trust of India has reported.
“IndiGo had sought EDTO [Extended Diversion Time Operations] approval for thirty-two A320/A321neo aircraft powered with PW1100G engines. Of these, 29 have got the approval and IndiGo’s flying permit has been endorsed as EDTO approved,” an unnamed DGCA official told the news agency.
With such approval in place, the aircraft have an additional 30 minutes of diversion time for landing at a nearby airport on top of the previous limit of 60 minutes, giving the budget carrier the option of launching more distant long-haul international destinations, such as across the Bay of Bengal to South-East Asia or over the Arabian Sea to the Gulf region.
The official said that approval for the remaining three neo was expected soon.
IndiGo currently operates a fleet of eighty-seven A320-200s and twenty-five ATR72-600s, as well as 120 A320-200N with a further 213 to be delivered and twenty-eight A321-200NX with one more due for delivery. It also has 369 A321-200N also signed up for delivery.
“IndiGo has all the pre-requisite approvals to operate its PW neo fleet as EDTO flights. This approval was achieved after fulfilling all operational requirements, which included conducting a validation flight,” an IndiGo spokesperson told the Press Trust of India. _________________ 11000 posts (and counting) on Airliners-India.
IndiGo is planning to tap into the cargo market with the addition of at least five P2F-converted A321-200Fs, sources told Indian daily Business Standard.
The carrier is already in talks with Airbus regarding the potential order. IndiGo reportedly treated the initial batch of five aircraft as a test for the market and could potentially add a larger number of dedicated freighters.
According to sources, the airline could take delivery of its first A321-200Fs in early 2022, taking into consideration the current backlog for conversions. The carrier would reportedly use them to connect India to China and destinations in western Asia - presumably the Gulf countries. _________________ 11000 posts (and counting) on Airliners-India.
IndiGo Airlines (6E, Delhi Int'l) has announced that it will add four A321-200(P2F) converted freighters, with the first delivery scheduled for the first half of 2022.
The Indian low-cost carrier said that it had already signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with an undisclosed lessor for the first two A321-200s and was in the process of sourcing the other two aircraft. The narrowbodies will be converted for the airline by Elbe Flugzeugwerke, a joint venture of ST Engineering and Airbus.
IndiGo said that the deliveries of all four aircraft would conclude within a year of the first delivery, i.e. by mid-2023. It indicated that it remained open to adding more freighters in the future.
"IndiGo was already the largest carrier of cargo in domestic India before COVID-19, and we expect the market to continue to grow after the pandemic," Chief Executive Ronojoy Dutta said.
The airline underlined that the A321(P2F)s would be operationally well-integrated into its all-Airbus passenger fleet. According to the ch-aviation fleets advanced module, the LCC currently operates eighty-seven A320-200s, 121 A320-200Ns, thirty-nine A321-200NXs, and twenty-six ATR72-600s. It has a further 570 A320neo Family aircraft on firm order from Airbus, making it the world's largest customer for the family, as well as a further twenty-four ATR72-600s from Avions de Transport Régional.
Rival LCC SpiceJet (SG, Delhi Int'l) was active on the cargo market even before the pandemic. The airline's freighter fleet, excluding makeshift freighters, comprises three B737-700(BDSF)s and two B737-800(BCF)s. India's third large LCC, GoAir (G8, Mumbai Int'l), does not operate any freighters. _________________ 11000 posts (and counting) on Airliners-India.
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