Jan. 17 (THEWILL) – The Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT) will take delivery of two more Diamond aircraft this year.
The Rector of the College, Captain Alkali Moddibo, who unveiled the plan during the formation of the League of Airport and Aviation Correspondents (LAAC) in Zaria recently, said that the Diamond planes will be equipped with twin and single engines.
The Aviation College currently uses the Diamond, Tampicos and Beech Baron 58 aircraft types. Already seven of the Diamond aircraft had been delivered in 2020.
With around 20 aircraft in working order, Capt Modibbo assured that the equipment available to NCAT is sufficient to train students at all times.
Highlighting the unique advantage of Diamond aircraft, the Rector said, “As I said earlier, we intend to take delivery of more aircraft this year. We will take one in February and another in April. The diamonds will be around 15 in all. They are forward cockpit; we have the latest technology you can find in any machine and it uses Jet A1 which is cheaper than aviation gas (AvGas). Aviation gas is not easy to find, we have to import it into Nigeria and that is what the Tampicos use”.
“I will be happy to tell you that we are taking a new step. We are considering acquiring Magnus, which is another plane made in Hungary. We visited their factory with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and the Ministry of Aviation. We have done our technical inspection; sooner or later we will start to have these machines here”.
“The advantages of these machines are that; First, it is made from carbon fiber, very light and uses the Premium Motoring Spirit (PMS) like the one you use in your car. So from AvGas we got off at Jet A1 and we also go to PMS. It will be less expensive to fly with this aircraft”.
“Something unique about this plane is that it has its own parachute. If you lose an engine, there is a parachute that you will pull and the engine will come out and the pilot can land the plane with this parachute. With this you have saved a life and the equipment. The parachute is there for you in case you lose an engine and the plane only has one engine,” the rector added.
According to the rector, there are about six foreign students in training at the College while other foreign students are expected from Niamey, Niger to attend the school very soon.
He, however, pointed out that although it is costly for students outside Nigeria to enroll in NCAT, the College still encourages students to come as well.
“When you want to be a pilot, you will need around $50,000, but for Nigerians, we have serious subsidies for pilots and engineers, but we always encourage foreigners to come as well.
On what the school is doing to address the issue of an aging workforce at the facility, Capt Modibbo explained, “That’s why we’re here, we keep bringing in younger staff and it is an ongoing process. We continue to hire younger people to replace those retiring and when you retire we still contract you to impact your knowledge and experience on the next generation of instructors.
Capt Modibbo who said his priority this year is to try as much as possible to provide more training locally and internationally, added that the College also plans to obtain certification of the Automatic Rescue Training Provider Certificate against NCAA fires.
The NCAT, which was established approximately 58 years ago, was recently transformed into a Regional Training Center of Excellence (RTCE), while the NCAA also approved it as an Approved Training Organization (ATO). .