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DaV
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Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 7:03 am

Sorry to ask a probably dumb question, but I was looking at some pics in the db of cargo planes and noted that a good amount of them are shoot in Anchorage. So why so many cargos in Alaska? What's so important there to even base a cargo carrier (Polar Air Cargo)?

Thank in advance for your replies  Smile

DaV
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SUPRAZACHAIR
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 7:08 am

I imagine its a conveniant fuel stop for long haul transpolar flights.
 
AFC_Ajax00
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 7:09 am

I believe its due to the fact that when fully loaded, most freighters cannot make a transpac flight and ANC is a convenient airport to refuel at when performing a HKG-JFK cargo flight for example.
Once you have tasted flight, you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward; for there you long to return
 
DLKAPA
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 7:10 am

Actually, it is because Anchorage is prime real-estate, so to speak. It is located within 9 hours flight of 95% of the industrialized world, making it an excellent place to base a cargo operation.
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iowa744fan
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 8:14 am

DaV,
First, from what I have learned, there are some people who get annoyed at questions that they think are "dumb", but my opinion is don't worry. If you have a question and are curious about it, that is what a forum is for. So, I say, don't worry if you think the question is "dumb". Just ask away.

Now, to the question, as mentioned by AFC_ajaz00, Anchorage is a very convenient fueling stop. Often, the weight of the cargo is much higher than the weight of say passengers (obvious differences such as flowers and textiles, versus some heavier machinery, etc.) Anyway, the aircraft could operate a segment, say New York - Hong Kong nonstop, but weight from fuel would account for a significant proportion of the MTOW (max. take off weight), and the airline would have to limit the amount of cargo that it can carry (again, the density of the cargo plays a role). This is the same for passenger flights on extreme long haul flights. Because the amount of cargo carried is what determines revenue, most airlines would rather fly a fully loaded aircraft and make a stop in say Anchorage to refuel. The cost of landing, refueling, and taking off again is generally more than made up for in the additional revenue from operating a full flight.
Another benefit to some carriers is the ability to use Anchorage as a sorting hub for flights in each direction. Fed Ex, UPS, and Northwest all have large facilities up there for doing this. This similar to a hub facility for passengers and imrpoves efficiency. To my knowledge, the Asian airlines tend to just land, refuel, and take off. They generally only operate from one city at one end (i.e. Cathay Pacific Cargo flights come from only Hong Kong and go to several U.S. cities, hence no need to transfer cargo. Northwest flights come from several U.S. cities and go to several Asian cities, so there is some need to transfer cargo). At the moment, I don't know of any Asian airlines that transfer cargo in ANC. When I was there, they just pulled up and parked in the space between the two terminals, refueled, changed crews, and were off again. It is quite impressive if you can hit a busy time for them. Quite a few 744Fs of the Asian cargo carriers there and up close to see.

 
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RayChuang
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 8:52 am

ANC is not only an important refuelling stop for transpacific air cargo flights, but also NW's very profitable air cargo subsidiary is based there, too! However, that could change once more and more A380-800F's become operational, as unlike the 747 freighters the A388F has the range with a near-full cargo load to fly from the US West Coast directly to Japan (and possibly PEK/PVG) non-stop easily.
 
Cactus739
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 9:25 am

I know when I was growing up there, that Fairbanks (FAI) would get a lot of cargo flights as well... I remember many times seeing a Lufthansa plane coming in.. Do they still have these cargo flights?
You can't fix stupid.... - Ron White
 
N730AS
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 12:08 pm

Yes Cactus739, up here (in FAI) we get quite a few LH cargo flights per day. On a daily basis I think that we get 2 742 flights and 3-4 MD-11F flights.
N730AS (s/n 22577) 737-290C Registered Jun-29-1981
 
flyingnanook
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 1:30 pm

Also, Alaska is completely dependent on airplanes to deliver cargo up here. So that is another reason that there are several cargo planes there.

And in FAI we get these for refueling (according to the FAI website as of Apr 4)

Cargolux 747- Tues (twice), Wed, Thurs, Sat, Sun
Lufthansa MD11- Tues, Wed, Thurs (twice), Fri (twice), Sat, Sun
Lufthansa 747- Daily except Sat

Does anybody know what happened to the Air France cargo that would stop here?
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N730AS
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 1:50 pm

FlyingNanook, AF cargo has pulled out of FAI completely. They got the 744ER I believe, and now they do not have to stop in FAI.
N730AS (s/n 22577) 737-290C Registered Jun-29-1981
 
Mizzou65201
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 2:12 pm

It's the "great circle" at work. It's a whole lot faster to circle the earth up at the top than 'round the middle. Thus you get polar routes from Europe and trans-pacific routes between Asia and the US that are much shorter with a northern leg than "straight across."

Add a major inter modal location in ANC (air-sea-road) and you've got yourself a prime cargo hub.
 
Alessandro
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 2:37 pm

I guess that the fuel price is low (locally produced?) and land is also cheap.
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DaV
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RE: Why So Many Cargos In Anchorage?

Wed Apr 14, 2004 5:20 pm

Thank you guys for clearing up!

DaV
Two monologues do not make a dialogue