Qatar Airways claims to have achieved an aviation milestone by becoming the first airline in the world to land an aircraft operating new navigational technology into Kathmandu.
The Doha-based carrier implemented a Required Navigation Performance – Authorisation Required (RNP AR) approach into the Nepalese capital’s Tribhuvan airport in the Himalayan mountains.
Kathmandu is recognised as having one of the world’s most complicated airport approaches due to the surrounding challenging terrain.
The airline operates four flights a day between its Doha hub and Kathmandu.
Qatar Airways says flying an RNP AR approach reduces pilots’ workload considerably and allows them to take full benefit of the advanced navigation equipment installed in aircraft to easily circumnavigate difficult terrain.
It leads to significant safety improvements and reduces the required visibility compared with current standard flying procedures.
Chief executive Akbar Al Baker said: "Qatar Airways was one of the first international airlines to start flying to Kathmandu more than 10 years ago.
“We have developed our operations steadily on the route from daily to four flights each day clearly demonstrating this is an important and safe market to fly into.
“We pride ourselves on adopting the latest technology across our fleet and operation to ensure we maintain our high standards, vital for any business of our nature.
“The airline takes all necessary steps possible to enhance safety measures throughout our operation without hesitation, whether in the air or on the ground.
“The new safety procedures adopted on our aircraft significantly enhance navigation procedures and make it an overall improved flying experience for our crew.”