Quiet Wing, the Washington-based parent company of Stage 3 noise reduction specialist DuganAir Technologies, is broadening its Boeing 727 passenger-to-freighter conversion and life-extension efforts by partnering with conversion firm Stambaugh Aviation.

The move is centred on the development of a passenger-to-freighter conversion kit which includes a 9g bulkhead, vertical side restraints and a standard roller and latch system capable of holding up to 2.24m x 3.20m (88in x 125in) freight pallets. It also builds on a structural maintenance programme announced in May by Quiet Wing based on what it claims is the "first and only complete finite element model [FEM] of the 727". The system digitally models the airframe, allowing load prediction and before-and- after analysis on individual aircraft.

Stambaugh will support the installation, update materials and develop hardware improvements.

The structural programme was developed in response to Federal Aviation Administration airworthiness directives that put restrictions on passenger-to-freighter conversions but did not offer "any actual means for operators to comply". Quiet Wing believes the programme, backed by the FEM, overcomes the impasse and "will reduce maintenance costs and increase the asset value of the 727".

Source: Flight International