9 JULY 2012
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Readers of The Business Travel News can now watch a Germania Boeing 737-700 manoeuvre on the ground with the engines shut down and no tug vehicle provided. Just click on the aircraft video.
Powered by the aircraft’s APU the in-wheel WheelTugR system allows the pilots to push back and taxi without waiting for a tug or powering up the engines.
"I'm excited about seeing engineless-taxi come to aviation. It was a great honour to be the first pilot to use WheelTug on a Boeing 737", said Germania Captain Patrick Hintzen. "In particular, there are many delays on pushback and it is where the airline has the least control of aircraft. With WheelTug, we are freed from the 'chains' that keep us parked at the gate".
The tests were undertaken by the WheelTug team including key partners Endeavor Analysis, ICE Corp, Co-Operative Industries and Dynetic Systems. Tests were hosted by Prague Airport and ABS Jets, with the aircraft provided by Germania.
The WheelTug is designed for rapid retrofit. In under two hours, the test system was uninstalled from the Germania 737-700 and the aircraft returned to service.
The full video can be seen at the Farnborough International Airshow, beginning Monday 9 July. Hall 4, A13. www.media.wheeltug.com
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