Sunday, March 3, 2013

Austral MD-81, LV-WFN, One of the Oldest MD-80's, Flown to Moron Museum for Display

LV-WFN at Buenos Aires Aeroparque (AEP) on 23Jan11.  (Phil Perry Photo)

On 26Feb13, Austral MD-81, LV-WFN (c/n 48025/952) was flown from Cordoba (COR), where it had been stored since retirement from the airline's fleet over a year ago, to the Museo Nacional de Aeronautica at the Moron Air Force Base just west of Buenos Aires for preservation and future display.  The approx. 700km / 438 mile ferry flight was flown with the aircraft unpressurized and with the landing gear down. 

This is a significant aircraft in the history of Austral as it was the first MD-80 series plane delivered to the airline (of an original order of three examples).  The aircraft was delivered with registration N10027 on 08Jan81 and was re-registered LV-WFN on 16Dec93.  Its first flight was on 26Aug80 and it accumulated 70,445 flight hours over 60,351 cycles in its service life.  

LV-WFN was delivered with 155 economy-class seats, reconfigured to 140 economy and 8 first-class seats in 2004 and again to 160 economy-class seats in recent years.

The plane was delivered with Pratt & Whitney JT8D-209 engines which were replaced with two -219 variants on 30Dec95 for standardization of the fleet.  These will soon be replaced with two -217A's when the plane goes on display.     

One 737-200 in full 1975 Aerolineas Argentinas colors and two BAC-111's are also stored at Moron, but one of the latter is located in a restricted area and the other is in somewhat derelict condition. 


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