Monday, October 30, 2017

Seaplanes to land on Yamuna, Ganga? SpiceJet may soon place an order for 100 such aircraft

Days after low-cost carrier SpiceJet said it is in talks with Japan's Setouchi Holdings to purchase 100 Kodiak amphibious planes, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said Russian and Japanese firms have expressed interest in supplying amphibious planes to India which also include 50 seater planes.
"India has a huge potential in seaplanes that can overhaul connectivity. A Russian firm has approached us for supplying 50 seater amphibious planes which have multiple uses right from passenger and cargo transportation to fire fighting, rescue and defence operations," the transport and water resources minister Nitin Gadkari said.
"Airports are in short supply in India. Lots of the growth in India is happening in small markets, but those small markets have little or no connectivity. So we are looking for a solution where we can get flights to places where no airports exist," SpiceJet Chairman Ajay Singh told Bloomberg.
"The basic logic for this is that in India, we need last-mile connectivity. The amphibian plane opens up a lot of areas, creates a lot of flexibility. The Kodiak planes also could be deployed to tourist sites such as the western lake-town of Udaipur, where the airport is far away from the main city," Singh said.
SpiceJet's announcement comes weeks after the budget carrier signed a pact with Canadian aircraft maker Bombardier to supply 50 turboprop jets valued at $1.7 billion. SpiceJet had earlier signed an initial pact with the US aircraft maker Boeing Co for 40 737 MAX planes.
Amphibious aircraft can take off and land on both short strips and water bodies. Amphibious aircrafts are slower and heavier but are more versatile than the usual land planes. They could be slightly tricky to manoeuvre as these planes, unlike helicopters, cannot hover in the same place and cannot land vertically. They however, do have a longer range than helicopters. Since these planes can land on water, they have floats as well as wheels for landing.
30/10/17 Business Today

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