Following a major overhaul of a modified 747SP, sometimes called “the Flying Telescope,” Lufthansa Technik is scheduled to return the aircraft to its owner in the next a few days, the MRO provider announced here at MEBA 2014.
More formally known as Sofia, for Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, the big jet is operated jointly by the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the German Aerospace Centre.
Lufthansa Technik (Stand 500) has gained extensive experience with the 747 family over the last 40 years, and currently has more than seventy 747s under exclusive service contracts. In addition to its work on Sofia, the company is finishing two head-of-state 747-8 completions and is in “concrete” discussions with additional 747-8 customers regarding completions, the company said.
The latest product in the Lufthansa Technik’s service portfolio for the 747-8 is the aircraft production inspection program, which it offers to all VIP customers, airlines and leasing companies.