Technical competence of Lufthansa Technik
Immediately after acquiring the three Lockheed L-1649A's in December 2007, the Deutsche Lufthansa Berlin-Stiftung (DLBS) appointed Lufthansa Technik to restore one of the newly purchased Super Stars to an airworthy condition. The benchmark for the future technical standards of the DLBS's new historic aircraft is high. When Lufthansa Technik hands the Super Star over to the Foundation's flying operation, not only will the aircraft look as if it had just rolled out of Lockheed final assembly, but it will incorporate the latest safety standards of the modern era.
As a globally active maintenance and development organization, Lufthansa Technik is the ideal partner to implement the comprehensive task package, which will require extensive work on the aircraft structure. Thus, in a few years' time, the DLBS's L-1649A will be transformed once more into the masterpiece of aircraft design that was built over half a century ago. To make this happen, the airport of Auburn built a hangar, which is rented for the restoration phase.
After the aircraft had been moved into this hangar in November 2008, an ambitious maintenance and upgrade program got under way. Thus, for example, this L-1649A, which is currently configured as a cargo aircraft, is retrofitted back into a passenger aircraft so that guests of the Deutsche Lufthansa Berlin-Stiftung can then once again enjoy the unforgettable experience of a flight in the Super Star.
A highly motivated and skilled band of active and former employees of Lufthansa Technik, who will be devoting all their efforts to this demanding project, are responsible for ensuring that this is the case. The choice as to which of the three aircraft would be the one to fly again fell on an aircraft originally built for TWA in 1957 and registered as N7316C. As the technically sturdiest of the three, it serves as the platform for the elaborate restoration process which commenced in the early summer of 2008. Along with the three aircraft, the Foundation had also purchased 13 Super Star engines plus countless spare parts and full technical documentation for the aircraft type.