Grounded Airbus A320-233-MSN 6445 ‘9N-AKW’ named Sagarmatha belonging to Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC) is back to operation from today after the damaged engine has been replaced.
The aircraft departed from Seletar Airport, Singapore at 6:58 PM local time for Tribhuvan International Airport under the command of NAC Sr. Captain Srawan Rijal and First Officer Yogesh Hirachan.
According to the highly placed source at NAC, the aircraft will undergo through the test flight on 23rd of February for the renewal of its Certificate of Airworthiness (CofA) which was invalid since last couple of months. The Airbus A320 was ferried to Seletar Airport, Singapore from Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi on February 8 for the maintenance of its damaged engine.
NAC has leased engine from International Aero Engines (IAE) with estimated cost of USD 150,000 per month. IAE will also repair the faulty engine of ‘9N-AKW’ for which the engine will be carried to New Zealand. The date for the repairing of the engine has been allocated on 27th of February.
The corporation has received a loss of around Rs100 million monthly due to the absence of ‘9N-AKW’. The figure has been computed on the basis of the estimated annual income of Rs1.2 billion for each of NAC’s aircraft.
Meanwhile, the corporation has been preparing to invite bids for a ‘power by the hour’ program that will allow it to accurately forecast cost and free it from purchasing stocks of engines and accessories. “The ‘power by the hour’ is a new concept. It’s like insurance that protects the lessee from unexpected costs of premature engine failure,” said Kansakar, adding that NAC would pay for the service on an installment basis.
The European made Airbus A320 ‘SAGARMATHA’ which was delivered to Nepal Airlines on February 2015 and has completed 3 years of flight operation.