Sept 29, 2016 – The Boeing 737 NG has been officially certified for TaxiBot® dispatch towing. The Supplement Type Certificate (STC) was issued by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the Civil Aviation Authority of Israel (CAAI). This milestone completes certification for the Boeing 737 family, thus covering the Boeing 737-600, 737-700,737-800,737-900 and 737-900ER, in addition to prior certification of the Boeing 737-300,737-400 and 737-500.
TaxiBot, a semi-robotic pilot-controlled vehicle, is designed to transport commercial airline aircraft from terminal gates to the runway and back, without using the airplane's own engines. The TaxiBot has been dispatch-towing commercial Lufthansa Boeing 737 (Classic) flights departing out of Frankfurt Airport from November 2014.
Since 2008 IAI, along with its industrial risk-sharing partner TLD, has been cooperating with Lufthansa LEOS in the development of the TaxiBot, with the support of both OEMs Airbus and Boeing. Lufthansa LEOS has integrated the TaxiBot project into its “E-PORT-AN” initiative, aimed at taking passenger airplane towing and surface traffic performance beyond the existing limits of environmental sustainability at Frankfurt Airport.
Leading airlines, ground-handling companies, airports and leasing companies around the world have shown considerable interest in TaxiBot. Several working groups are actively studying and preparing to introduce TaxiBot in some of the world’s leading airport hubs, in North America, Europe and Asia.
“EASA certification of the B737 NG is an additional benchmark for the TaxiBot program" said Ran Braier, Director of Civil Robotics at IAI It enables operation of this innovative system with major airline fleets in leading airports while revolutionizing the commercial aviation industry, thereby saving millions of dollars in fuel costs, improving operations and contributing to the global environment.”
The Lufthansa Technik Group, with more than 30 subsidiaries and associates and over 26,000 employees worldwide, is one of the leading manufacturer-independent providers of technical services for the aviation industry. Its portfolio encompasses the entire spectrum of services for commercial aircraft: maintenance, repair, overhaul, modification and conversion, engines and components.
TLD Group, a multinational company with 7 manufacturing facilities (USA, Canada, France and China) and 40 Sales and Service offices in all continents, is the largest Word Airport Ground Support Equipment manufacturer. Since the 80’s, TLD Group is at the origin of the development of the first towbarless tractors, and still dominates this market. TLD has joined the TaxiBot program in 2009 as a risk sharing partner for the design and manufacturing of the TaxiBot tractor.
Israel Aerospace Industries
Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) is Israel’s largest aerospace and defense company and a globally recognized technology and innovation leader specializing in developing and manufacturing advanced, state-of-the-art systems for air, space, sea, land, cyber and homeland security. Since 1953, the company has provided advanced technology solutions to government and commercial customers worldwide including: satellites, missiles, weapon systems and munitions, unmanned systems, robotic systems, electronics, radars, C4ISR, navigation systems and EO payloads. IAI also designs and manufactures business jets and aerostructures, performs overhaul and maintenance on commercial aircraft and converts passenger aircraft to refueling and cargo configurations.
For more about IAI, visit us at: www.iai.co.il
Senior VP Communications