Thursday, March 9, 2023
Norsaq becomes an "organ donor"
- It was with sadness that we had to say goodbye to Norsaq yesterday after more than 20 years in Air Greenland. Now it is heading to the USA, says Henrik Keil, Technical Manager of our transatlantic aircraft.
Tomorrow, Friday 10 March, Norsaq will fly a ferry flight from Copenhagen - now on its final flight. Norsaq's final destination is Pinal Airpark in Marana, Arizona, but first it will stop in Tucson for customs and immigration clearance.
Many have been eagerly awaiting to know what will happen to Norsaq after its last scheduled flight on 16 February. Now we can reveal this.
- The keys to Norsaq will be passed on to its new owners called AAR SUPPLY CHAIN and Norsaq will thus end up as an "organ donor", i.e. as a spare aircraft, says Air Greenland's technical manager for the transatlantic aircraft, Henrik Keil and continues.
- The handover will take place on Monday 13 March in a hot desert in Arizona. This is in stark contrast and against Norsaq's will, he says, pointing out that Norsaq has grown up and been brought up to be a cold-weather aircraft and has only very rarely caused problems due to cold weather.
- Even down to minus 40 degrees. There have sometimes been a few complaints and disagreements, but mostly due to a little too much downtime. Hardly at all during the busy periods.
Some of our colleagues in Copenhagen literally wrote a farewell to Norsaq yesterday, Wednesday 8 March 2023.
Norsaq's many years of faithful service thus ends after many charter trips with happy sun tourists, flights with soldiers to Kuwait and Calgary and with Greenlandic athletes who have participated in the Arctic Winter Games in various places in Canada. But the day-to-day job was of course to be the lifeline between Greenland and Denmark. Keeping an aeroplane in the air for over 20 years requires a dedicated effort.
- This would not have been possible without a large number of truly dedicated technicians from SAS who have faithfully looked after her night after night, caring for her better than their own car and maybe even a partner back home. Never has there been any whining and complaining. Always Norsaq has received special attention and what in the car world is cleverly called TLC. Tender, Love and Caring, says Henrik.
The flight route that Norsaq will fly tomorrow Friday 10 March goes straight over Nuuk and as we want to ensure the route is as sustainable as possible, it was most obvious that Norsaq went low over Nuuk, which will also be Tuukkaq's new permanent destination when the new runway opens in 2024.
Also in its own ranks, Air Greenland has swept the runway clear so that things were ready and prepared for troubleshooting and planned maintenance of the aircraft.
- This with Peter Bjerre, Lars Christensen, Jens Laurberg, Michael Linder, Mia Mandal, Gert Bo Petersen and Bo Møller who over the years in turn have been a large part of Norsaq's foster parents.
In Greenland, Johannes Holst, Rudy Mynster, Morten Lanther Larsen, Jan Mejlgaard Larsen and not least our current two technicians Kasper Zeeb Andersen and René Fencker Holm have been ready with headsets on all flight days, asking if everything was OK so that we could fly safely back to Denmark with the up to 140,000 passengers who are flown across the Atlantic every year, he says and puts the farewell to Norsaq in his own words.
- It will be a huge loss, and to my knowledge, there are not many other aircraft in the world that have received the same attention when Norsaq was away from its usual route. It was the red "salami" that all aircraft spotters wanted to have on their lenses, concludes Henrik Keil.
The pilots on the ferry flight will be Michael Madsen (chief pilot A330), who will fly Norsaq's last trip. He was also the pilot who flew Tuukkaq's very first flight. Thomas Kjærulff, senior first officer, will be first officer. He is also the pilot with the most flying hours on the right side of an A330.
Technical Manager, Henrik Keil and Michael Linder, Technical Coordinator are also on board for the ferry flight to Arizona together with two representatives from the buyers, AAR SUPPLY CHAIN. The picture is Henrik on the left and Michael on the right and was taken at the handover of Tuukkaq, which now awaits their full attention, care and nurturing.
Did you know this
Norsaq's flying hours in Air Greenland have totalled 41,364 flying hours and 10,112 take-offs and landings. In other words, it has virtually flown 4800 times up and down the North Atlantic. This has required two undercarriages, two x 2 engine overhauls and 2 APU overhauls as well as a newer APU due to a bearing failure