McMinnville, Oregon: Evergreen International Aviation is proud to announce its award to maintain and operate NASA’s Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) aircraft.
“Evergreen is proud to continue its long standing history of supporting NASA’s important missions with our quality maintenance and operations expertise,” says Evergreen International Aviation President Tim Wahlberg.
SOFIA is being developed by NASA and the DLR, German Aerospace Center. The aircraft, a Boeing 747SP aircraft modified by L-3 Communications Integrated Systems, will accommodate a 8 foot reflecting telescope. It will be the largest airborne observatory in the world and will allow observations that are impossible for even the largest and highest of ground-based telescopes. Aboard Sofia there are two consoles for two scientists and additionally four monitors for the Principal Investigator on the flight. The Sofia Aircraft will fly at 41,000 feet above 90% of atmospheric water vapor. The telescope is designed to make sensitive infrared measurements.
To support the SOFIA program, Evergreen International Airlines, will provide operational support, flight crews, training and dispatch while Evergreen Air Center will provide maintenance and material support.
Evergreen has a proven track record of providing NASA with high quality, on-schedule maintenance. For the past 12 years, NASA has relied on the Evergreen Air Center for complete maintenance, repair, modification and corrosion control programs on two Boeing 747 Space Shuttle carrier aircraft.
Evergreen International Aviation, Inc. is a portfolio of five diverse aviation companies headquartered in McMinnville, Oregon. Evergreen consists of an international cargo airline that owns and operates 10 Boeing 747s, an unlimited aircraft maintenance and repair facility, a helicopter service company, a full service aircraft ground handling company and an aircraft sales and leasing company. With over 4500 employees worldwide, Evergreen International Aviation has worked for customers from over 160 countries.