Panalpina's first Boeing-747-8, operated by Atlas Air, landed at Huntsville International Airport (HSV) on Saturday, June 2. The freighter flew in from Luxembourg.
This aircraft offers significant benefits with a 16 percent increase in payload over the model previously used for the Luxembourg/Huntsville route. It also boasts a 12 percent reduction in fuel burn, a 30 percent decrease in noise, and 12 percent less CO2 emissions.
"It's significant that Panalpina has invested in this new aircraft, and shows the company's confidence in its ability to bring even more air cargo to Huntsville," said Rick Tucker, executive director for the Port of Huntsville. "We're excited about our growing partnership with Panalpina and the economic development impact it has for the entire region."
Huntsville International Airport is the smallest airport in the country to receive certification by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to accommodate the Boeing 747-8, which is part of the largest aircraft classification known as Group IV. The 747-8 has a 224-foot, 7-inch wingspan and measures 250 feet, 2 inches from nose to tail. The new model is 18.3 feet longer and 13 feet wider than the current 747 models, which are classified as Group V aircrafts.
"This is truly a historical occasion for Panalpina because having a branded plane symbolizes the fact that we are the only third-party logistics provider which offers this type of service but also provides our customers with the latest-technology in aviation machinery," said Lucas Kuehner, managing director USA, for Panalpina, Inc. "The addition of a fully branded plane with state -of-the-art technology and more capacity opens up new opportunities for our Healthcare, Hi-Tech, Automotive and Oil and Gas customers."
Panalpina launched the aircraft for the first time last week from Everett, Wash., bound for Hong Kong (see news release from launch here). It's the company's first aircraft in Panalpina livery. A second 747-8 will join Panalpina's fleet later this year.