TaxiBot was certified for operation with Airbus A320
19 May, 2017
The IAI's semi-robotic pilot-controlled vehicle, is now approved to give taxiing services for aircraft families covers about 70% of the entire worldwide commercial airlines flights
TaxiBot, the semi-robotic pilot-controlled vehicle for dispatch towing of the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) , obtained EASA certification for operation with the Airbus A320 aircraft family. The certification includes the approval for engine start-up during taxi for all types of the A318-319-320-321 aircraft including the NEO variants. The certification is valid also for the FAA and it joins existing certification for operation of the TaxiBot with all types of the Boeing 737 aircraft.
The certification for both A320 and B737 families covers more than 70% of the entire worldwide commercial airlines flights, which could be provided with TaxiBot service. TaxiBot is a semi-robotic pilot-controlled vehicle, which was designed to transport commercial airline aircraft from terminal gates to the runway and back, without using the airplane’s own engines. TaxiBot started dispatch-towing commercial Lufthansa Boeing 737 (Classic) flights departing out of Frankfurt Airport in November 2014.
The TaxiBot provides taxiing services and is controlled by the aircraft pilots themselves by using airplane tiller and brake pedals, while the aircraft engines are stopped. The engines start only shortly before takeoff. Shaul Shahar, General Manager of the Military Aircraft Group at IAI, said the certification of the A320 is a significant milestone for the TaxiBot program. “Even with the current low fuel price, the saving for airlines accumulate to millions of dollars per year. The option to optimize engines start whenever needed improves operations beyond the original plan, while maintaining the contribution to the global environment”.