GE Aviation Czech engines to be serviced in Russia

GE Aviation Czech produces turboprop engines, including for the L-410 The provider will offer both standard and extended maintenance services (Leonid Faerberg / Transport-photo.com)

Russia’s Ural Works of Civil Aviation (UWCA) will soon be certified by GE Aviation Czech (former Czech aircraft engine manufacturer Walter Engines, which was acquired by GE Aviation in 2008) as an authorized service center in Russia.

The corresponding agreement was signed on November 22 at the Russian-Czech business forum, held to coincide with the formal visit of Czech President Milos Zeman to Russia.

The Yekaterinburg-based company will provide both standard and extended engine maintenance, including base and on-wing support, and will also train its engineers in servicing GE Aviation Czech H80 engines that power 19-seat L-410 turboprops manufactured by Czech airframer Aircraft Industries (owned by Russia’s Ural Mining and Metallurgical Company).

UWCA, which currently assembles the turboprop aircraft, will shortly be offering overhaul services to both Russian and CIS operators. GE Aviation Czech is building a worldwide service network; until recently engine overhauls have only been available in Prague.

GE Aviation Czech and Russia’s United Engine Corporation (UEC) also used the business forum to sign a memorandum demonstrating their intention to jointly explore future prospects for the former’s turboprop engines on the Russian market (particularly the M-601 and the more capable and fuel-efficient H80). The engines might be needed to provide air transportation services to the country’s remote regions, GE Aviation believes.

In Russia, the L-410 is commercially operated by the carriers Orenburzhye (owned by Orenburg Airport), Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky Air Enterprise, Komiaviatrans, KrasAvia, Polar Airlines, Uktus, and Second Arkhangelsk United Aviation Squadron. Khabarovsk Airlines has suspended L-410 operations following the crash of one of its aircraft near Nelkan, on Russia;s Far East, earlier in November.

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