EBACE Convention News

Jet Aviation swings doors open on widebody super hangar

 - May 18, 2008, 10:15 PM

Jet Aviation inaugurated a new hangar at its Basel completion facility on May 16, just days before the opening of EBACE. Capable of simultaneously accommodating an A380 and a B747, the facility covers more than 100,000 square feet. Another 100,000 square feet of office and shop space is to be added in the near future. The event was attended by 500 customers, suppliers, members of local authorities and the press.

The new hangar will be exclusively used for completion of large aircraft. It is a stand-alone structure built on the west side of Basel’s 16/34 main runway, while Jet Aviation’s existing six hangars are all on the east side. Approximately half of Jet Aviation’s Basel facility is devoted to completions, with the other half active in maintenance.

Jet Aviation management believes that completions of large executive aircraft and VIP-configured airliners will continue to grow and expects a 60- to 70-percent increase in 2008 compared to 2007. According to CEO Peter Edwards, demand remains strong, as exemplified by a backlog of several years, which reaches into 2015 for widebody aircraft, while capacity for single-aisle airliners is booked until 2011.

Jet Aviation (Booth No. 1147) has an agreement with Dassault for the completion of 24 executive jets per year (Falcon 2000s, 900s and 7Xs) and has customers for the completion of large aircraft, from Boeing BBJ and Airbus A319 upwards to B747s, and even for the first private A380. Jet Aviation offers the full spectrum of completion work and has its own design office, as well as metal, wood, composites and upholstery shops. Once the completion division reaches its full capacity with the new hangar, Jet Aviation will have simultaneously two widebody airliners, two single-aisle airliners and seven Falcon jets in its hangars. Completions of large aircraft take from six months to two years.

Customers for large aircraft completions come mainly from the Middle East, Russia, the U.S., Europe and Asia, in this order. Government aircraft account for approximately 15 percent of orders. About 60 percent of widebody aircraft completed by Jet Aviation are new, while the rest are retired airliners. About 80 percent of the single-aisle airliners it completes are new.