EASA Certifies Airbus A320P2F Converted Freighter
SINGAPORE—The Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW) Airbus A320 passenger-to-freighter (P2F) aircraft has attained EASA supplemental type certificate, around three months after the aircraft conducted its first flight.
EFW, a joint venture between ST Engineering and Airbus, previously secured EASA certification for the A321P2F in February 2020.
The lead A320P2F is destined for Nairobi, Kenya-based Astral Aviation on lease from Emirati-lessor Vaayu Group. Vaayu recently converted a letter of commitment for five A320P2F signed in 2021 into a lease agreement with ST Engineering acting as the lessor.
The A320P2F has 11 pallet positions in the main deck and seven in the bellyhold with a total usable volume of 160 m3 (5,650 ft.3). For comparison, the longer A321P2F has 14 main deck positions and 10 positions in the belly. Structurally, the A320P2F differs from its stretched cousin as it keeps its rear passenger doors, which are deactivated rather than removed and plugged as on the A321P2F. On the A320P2F the main cargo door and crew access door sections are riveted together, rather than the A321P2F’s 80-in. gap in between.
Airbus conversion programs through EFW have become an anchor product for ST Engineering, especially since the onset of the pandemic and the concurrent increase in demand for freight capacity.
ST Engineering says its A330P2F conversion slots are booked through 2024 and A321/A320P2F slots to mid-2024. New conversion lines in Guangzhou, China, and Mobile, Alabama, are being brought online this year. The additions mean EFW will have 60 annual Airbus conversion slots by 2024.