J&C Aero has won a contract to manage the certification process for SmartLynx Airlines to receive a permanent EASA STC for cargo transportation inside its Airbus A330 cabins.
J&C Aero had previously developed the technical and legal documentation required to conduct cabin modification on five wide-body aircraft operated by the airline.
“Back at the beginning of 2020, J&C Aero was the first and only holder of an EASA STC that allowed cargo transportation inside passenger cabins without any time or flight hour limitations,” said J&C Aero’s COO Vitalijus Malyška.
“Today, the market demand evolved further, and airlines require even more flexibility in terms of fleet operations. It is vital for them to utilize the full capacity of their cabins while being able to easily change between PAX and cargo operations as the demand shifts.
“This particularly concerns the wide-body segment whereas many operators were forced to ground their long-haul aircraft amid the pandemic. But the ability to have an aircraft that is both passenger- and cargo-ready without conducting the full-fledge P2F conversion allows airlines to seize new opportunities on the cargo market while the travel segment is still recovering.
“With this in mind, we are very thankful to SmartLynx Airlines for entrusting the certification process with us and look forward to a smooth receipt of an STC by the carrier.”
Each of SmartLynx Airlines’ seatless Airbus A330 have up to 34 cargo zones for cargo containers or nets, with a total transportation capacity of 260 m3 and up to 55.000 kg of cargo, according to the company.
With all necessary temporary approvals by aviation authorities received, the airline already operates the modified aircraft on transatlantic and transpacific routes, transporting medical supplies and other cargo types.
The airline anticipates completing the certification for a permanent EASA STC by the end of autumn 2021.