GIBRALTAR--(Marketwired - Jan 29, 2014) - WheelTug plc announced today the execution of an agreement for 50 WheelTug systems for 737 MAX aircraft. The customer is unnamed at this time. With the new reservations the order book of WheelTug® aircraft drive systems grows to 781 delivery slots reserved by thirteen airlines from Europe, America, the Middle East and Asia. WheelTug is in active discussions with over 300 airlines worldwide, and expects to surpass 1,000 slot reservations this year.
Current commercial aviation practice utilizes a tug for aircraft gate pushback, while forward taxi is powered by the aircraft's engines. The electric WheelTug unit drives the aircraft without using the engines. The WheelTug system can be seen in action at http://media.wheeltug.com.
The biggest benefit of WheelTug ground operations is the time that can be saved parking and unloading the aircraft and cooling its brakes before the next flight. Because the system is in the nose gear, there is no interference with brake cooling, allowing aircraft to reduce turnaround time by as much as 15 to 20 minutes per flight. This can lead to a dramatic increase in fleet utilization, as well as passenger satisfaction.
Other significant benefits of the WheelTug aircraft drive systems include lower ground operation fuel consumption, removal of the time and safety costs from the use of ground tugs, substantially reduced carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions, increased safety and operational flexibility, reduced engine and brake wear, FOD repair costs, and decreased noise pollution.
WheelTug estimates the total savings at well over US $1 million per aircraft per year. WheelTug systems will be offered to the airlines entirely on a lease, or power-by-the-hour basis, permitting installation on aircraft and operation without any airline capital expenditure whatsoever.
WheelTug plc successfully installed and tested the first in-wheel WheelTug in Prague in June 2012. Video from the tests is available at http://media.wheeltug.com.
WheelTug also announces that it has appointed Mark Radom as the new Corporate Secretary of the company.
About WheelTug plc
WheelTug plc is a Gibraltar Corporation. A full listing of WheelTug partner companies and airline customers is on the company's website at http://www.wheeltug.gi.
Forward-looking statement at http://www.wheeltug.gi/fls.shtml.