IAG Cargo has welcomed the first Boeing 787 and Airbus A380 aircraft to the fleet, marking the beginning of a ten-year fleet modernisation programme, which will see 78 widebody aircraft join the company.
Offering 25 per cent more fuel efficiency than other aircraft of its size, as well as increased cargo capacity, the B787 has replaced the B767 and B747 models.
It provides air conditioning capabilities for the hold, which can be set to degree accuracy and, according to IAG, is perfect for the transport of temperature-sensitive cargo, such as perishables and pharmaceuticals.
The A380 also benefits temperature-sensitive goods, as it too enables IAG to set and maintain hold temperature to within 1˚C accuracy, with the choice of both air conditioning in the forward hold and heating and ventilation in the rear hold.
Having purchased additional ULD positions in its hold, the A380 can carry more cargo, and IAG said it provides the company with an improved maximum take-off weight.
“This is an incredibly important and exciting day for IAG Cargo and our customers, said Steve Gunning, managing director at IAG Cargo.
“These new aircraft will play a crucial role in helping us to meet our commitment to provide long-term capacity solutions for businesses across the world.
“We are confident that the B787 and A380, along with the aircraft we will introduce over the next few years, give us the modern and scalable airside capabilities we need to provide the highest levels of customer service.”
A380, courtesy of David Dyson
IAG aims to modernise its fleet within the next ten years, taking delivery of new cargo-friendly and fuel-efficient aircraft.
It has already placed orders for six B777-300s, set to join the two new models, and hopes to welcome 18 A350-1000s to its fleet between 2018 and 2023, subject to shareholder approval.