BEN GURION INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, ISRAEL -- Israel Aerospace Industries' (IAI) Bedek Aviation Group delivered its first B737-400 Bedek Special Freighter Configuration (BDSF) on March 15, 2009, to General Electric Commercial Aviation Service (GECAS). The aircraft has been leased to Bluebird Cargo based in Iceland. Bluebird already operates three B737-300BDSF aircraft.
This is the 39th B737 conversion from Passenger to Freighter (P2F) aircraft performed by IAI to date. The conversion was performed at IAI's Ben Gurion Airport facility. IAI holds Supplemental Type Certificates (STC) from the Civil Aviation Authority of Israel (CAAI), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
Dany Kleiman, IAI Corporate Vice President and General Manager of the Bedek Aviation Group, emphasizes that the Passenger to Cargo Conversion Program (B747-400, B767-200, B737-300 and now B737-400) is a core business of the Aircraft Division, and that in spite of the "slowdown" in the industry, IAI looks forward to many additional B737-400 conversion projects, including some this year.
IAI's Bedek Aviation Group selects AAR.
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The introduction of the larger freighter is part of Alaska Airlines' $100 million plan to expand and modernize its cargo operation to meet the growing demand for its cargo services.