On April 2, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) awarded Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) a supplemental type certificate (STC) for its 737-800BDSF freighter conversion program, Cargo Facts has learned.
IAI has completed two aircraft at its facility in Tel Aviv (TLV) – unit 30498 (ex-Transaero Airlines), which began flight tests in March 2019, and unit 28619 (ex-Pegasus), which operated its first test flight in November.
Both made their way from TLV to Florida in December and were spotted in DHL colors in Opa-Locka (OPF) in January, having been painted in Lake City (LCQ). Both have “Operated by Swift Air LLC” painted on the nose-gear door. Unit 30498 flew back to TLV via Shannon (SNN) in February, while unit 28619 appears to still be at OPF.
DHL Express previously confirmed to Cargo Facts it had acquired the two 737-800BDSFs from Spectre Air Capital, but didn’t comment on future CMI agreements or the arrangement with Swift Air, also known as iAero Airways, which has a single 737-300BDSF (23538, ex-Swiftair) along with other passenger 737-300s, -400s and -800s.
IAI, which previously anticipated obtaining the STC for the 737-800BDSF last year, certified its first 737NG conversion program, the -700BDSF, in 2017. Alaska Airlines and SpiceJet each operate three of the type. IAI becomes the third company to certify a 737-800 freighter conversion program after Boeing and Aeronautical Engineers Inc (AEI), which received FAA approval for their programs in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
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