ABU DHABI, UAE – Etihad Flight College, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has taken delivery of the first of four Embraer Phenom 100E. Etihad Flight College will be the first flight school in the world to use the Phenom 100E in the initial phase of flying training.
The twin jet training aircraft will begin service with the flight college in July 2016. A second aircraft will arrive at the flight college’s base in Al Ain later this month. Two further jets will be delivered in early 2017.
The Phenom will be used to instruct students on the Multi-Crew Pilot Licence (MPL) course. MPL is an innovative competency based approach to flying training using multi-engine aircraft. Introducing Multi Crew Pilot operations from the onset training is more effective, as airline flight crews operate as a team – in older formats, pilots are trained individually.
The aircraft arrived at Etihad Flight College’s facilities in Al Ain following a marathon 10 day voyage from Embraer’s manufacturing base in São José dos Campos, Brazil. The ferry flight, via four continents and covering over 12,500 miles, was commanded by Etihad Flight College’s MPL Program Manager, Senior First Officer Timothy Schoenauer. The 18 sector route from Brazil went via two Caribbean islands, Florida, Virginia, Maine, Newfoundland, Greenland, Iceland, Belfast, Amsterdam, Italy, Greece, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia, before arriving Al Ain.
Philip Chandler, Etihad Flight College’s General Manager, said: “Our flight college is a world-class training facility, producing a constant stream of well trained, highly-skilled pilots – the majority of whom are Emirati – for the growing operations of Etihad Airways. The Phenom 100E is an exciting new asset for Etihad Flight College. The airline-grade technology, performance and reliability make the Phenom an ideal initial training aircraft to prepare our students for line operations.”
Marco Tulio Pellegrini, President and Chief Executive Officer, Embraer Executive Jets, said: “Designed for high utilisation, with a pilot-friendly cockpit and docile flying qualities, the Phenom 100E is considered an obvious choice by airlines to prepare its cadets for jet operations. I’m glad to start delivery of Etihad Flight College’s Phenom 100E fleet, which will be the first flight school to use the aircraft in the initial phase of flying training.”
The order for four Embraer Phenom 100E was announced in June 2015. Once delivered, the four new aircraft will bring the number of aircraft in the trainer fleet to 22 – which also includes 10 Cessna 172SP Skyhawk, six Diamond DA42NG, and two EXTRA 300 aircraft.
There are 186 cadet pilots currently in Etihad Flight College training programmes, 122 of whom are Emiratis. In addition to training pilots for Etihad Airways, Etihad Flight College also trains pilots for two Etihad equity partner airlines – Alitalia and Air Seychelles.
Etihad Airways currently employs over 2,200 pilots and operates a fleet of 122 Airbus and Boeing aircraft, with over 204 additional aircraft on firm order.