Lufthansa Technik has said that it is working ‘flat out’ to obtain STCs for temporary passenger-to-cargo modifications as the company has seen interest in auxiliary freighters from airlines spike during the coronavirus crisis.

    According to the MRO provider, the company’s cabin modification experts have received enquiries from more than 40 airlines and over 15 projects for different aircraft types are already in the implementation phase.

    A special highlight is the support of the operational change of a first Airbus A380 of an undisclosed customer with which Lufthansa Technik has now been awarded.

    Lufthansa Technik senior director of aircraft modification base maintenance, Henning Jochmann, said: “Over the past days, we have received strong interest from different airlines regarding our passenger to freighter service capabilities.

    “As the workscope comprises much more than just taking out seats, you need engineering experts who know exactly what the challenges are and how to document the technical solutions so correctly that the aviation authorities agree.

    “The current exemption and our solution for it can be transferred to our Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) at a later point of time without major adjustments. This means that anyone who opts for LHT’s exceptional solution now can easily switch to the permanent STC solution later.”

    Lufthansa Technik notes how an aircraft that has been granted approval for passenger transport cannot simply be loaded with cargo in the cabin, as the approval criteria for passenger cabins and cargo compartments are completely different.

    For example, cargo has a different floor load, i.e. the structural load capacity of a passenger aircraft is lower than that of a cargo aircraft.

    While for passenger transport rescue routes must be kept clear and the oxygen supply must be ensured for each individual, special fire protection measures must be taken on board a freighter.

    All these criteria, and some more, must be taken into account and incorporated into the technical documentation by suitably qualified engineers and approved.

    Visit lufthansa-technik.com for more information.