Last week Air Charter Serviceâ€™s Brazil and Florida offices worked together to charter Antonov Airlinesâ€™ giant AN-225 to carry the heaviest single piece of air cargo to be flown in the Americas.
The huge transformer, which weighed in at 182 tonnes, was flown from SÃ£o Paulo to Santiago de Chile. From there it was transferred to its final destination, where it is a direct replacement for a damaged transformer in a plant near the capital. Richard Thompson, President of ACS Americas, commented: â€œThe airline has said that it is the second heaviest single piece of cargo that has ever been transported by air and the largest to fly in the Americas. The record is a single piece weighing 187.7 tonnes, which was flown from Frankfurt to Yerevan in 2009, making this charter the heaviest piece flown this decade.
â€œA lot of careful planning went into this operation. 182,000 kilos is more than most cranesâ€™ lifting capacity, and with the tricky dimensions, it took almost four months of discussions between us, the client, the airline and the airports to plan the charter and exactly how we would load and offload the cargo.
â€œThe power unit is more than four metres high, and that doesnâ€™t include the transportation cradle that it is travelling in. As you can see from the photo, it was a tight fit, even for the worldâ€™s largest cargo aircraft. It generated a lot of local attention, with many Brazilian television networks covering the loading and departure.â€