If I must recount the turning points of the civil aviation industry – the decisions that changed the fate of the industry (and the world we live in) forever – the advent of the ETOPS rating system would be one of my prime picks. Without ETOPS, we would still be flying large planes over major routes, with small planes only being used for overland flights. The point-to-point aviation model may have been difficult to achieve, and thus, our journeys may have been longer and more expensive.
ETOPS stands for ‘Extended Range Twin Engine Operation’ and is also known as EDTO (Extended Diversion Time Operation). Twin-engine aircraft are normally not allowed to operate more than 60 minutes of single-engine flying time from a suitable airfield. However, if the aircraft and the airline can show adequate reliability to operate in single-engine conditions, the routes can be ETOPS certified to operate beyond 60 minutes of flying time from the nearest suitable airfield. What does ‘reliability’ mean in this context? That flying single engine is safe for the airframe and manageable for the crew and passengers.
ETOPS Ratings for Major Twin-Jets
Provided below is a compiled list of ETOPS ratings of the most popular twin-engine aircraft. Please note that extension of the ETOPS rating for a particular route may be granted as explained above.
|Manufacturer||Aircraft||ETOPS Rating (minutes)|
|Boeing||737NG (600/700/800||180 (CFM engine powered)|
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Cover credits: Gameplayzz