Aeronautical Engineers, Inc. (AEI) reached a milestone in its CRJ200 SF passenger-to-freighter conversion program in early May with the cutting of the door (see photos below).
AEI said the door cutting marked the mid-point in the overall modification process and added that it was on schedule for certification for late 2015, as planned.
As Cargo Facts reported in late 2014, US-based IFL Group is the launch customer for the CRJ200 SF. At that time, AEI said it had 26 firm orders from six customers, but since then the company has booked orders for eight additional CRJ200 SF conversions for a total backlog of 34 conversions.
AEI says that, depending upon the model and aircraft weight limits, the freighter-converted CRJ200 SF will offer a main deck payload of up to 6.73 tonnes (14,840 lb), a 9g rigid cargo/smoke barrier with sliding door, and up to two supernumerary seats. Two cargo loading system options will be available, one with eight 61.5” x 88” ULD positions (common in Europe), the other with eight 62” x 88” positions (the size used by FedEx).
The conformity CRJ200 SF aircraft is being converted at Commercial Jet’s Miami, Florida facility.