Paul Seidenman

Paul Seidenman
Articles
Airlines, Engine MROs Collaborate On Customized Support Plans 

As airlines continue to watch engine expenses, MROs are being asked by their customers to design customized approaches to service and provide material solutions. The conversation is forcing MRO vendors to search for answers outside their facilities.

Airlines Seek Greater Personalized Engine Support 

As airlines continue to watch engine expenses, MROs are being asked by their customers to design customized approaches to service and provide material solutions. The conversation is forcing MRO vendors to search for answers outside their facilities.“A decade ago, the focus of engine maintenance contracts was on supporting the customer—at the time of the shop visit,” says Kristin Kenny, director of Pay Per Hour Programs for Pratt & Whitney Canada. “Now, contracts must be structured to take into account a complete understanding of the customer's operation.”

Environment Driving Next Generation Of Engine Coatings 

Blowing sand in the Middle East and high levels of airborne particulate matter from industrial pollution in Asia are parts of the impetus behind a new generation of thermal barrier coatings (TBC) designed to better protect engine components and withstand corrosive elements.

TBC corrosion is becoming a growing issue, specifically attributable to the build-up of calcium magnesium aluminosilicates (CMAS).

Notes on Nacelles 

As more nacelles are made of composites, their repair market is becoming quite diverse.

“Fleet transitions are adding complexity, failure modes vary as aircraft age, and operators are customizing work scopes to fit their needs,” says Meredith Siegfried, CEO of Nordam, a major nacelle OEM and repair specialist.

Siegfried says most of today's nacelle work stems from mature aircraft, which generally employ comparable technologies and materials, so today's primary focus is on doing the work faster and cheaper.

Americas Aftermarket Adjusts To Major Industry Changes
Airlines, MROs and OEMs adjust to big shift in business dynamic
Kalitta Air Builds Up Michigan MRO
Third party work is driving Kalitta Air MRO expansion
U.S. Firefighting Airtanker Modernization Impeded 
The U.S. will be facing yet another fire season with a dwindling number of aging airtankers.
Engine Overhaul Spending Is Forecast To Fluctuate 
Engine overhaul expenditures will grow modestly in the short term, but prepare for a spike.
MRO Spending Picks Up For Older Widebodies
Widebody operators face a new supply and demand paradigm.
Narrowbody MRO Continues On Even Keel 
Narrowbody maintenance will be driven by the Boeing 737 over the next three years.
On-Wing Software Mods Gain In Popularity 

Software upgrades, for the most part, are now an on-wing proposition. But, as Mitch Klink of the Avionics Maintenance Conference explains, all software modifications—and the media/hardware to transfer them—should conform to the baseline version of the Arinc 615 protocol to allow the use of portable data-loaders for on-wing applications. He cautions that, often when these upgrades are performed on-wing, the LRUs containing the new software versions become non-interchangeable with the LRUs containing the previous software versions.

Airlines Seeking Software Solutions For Avionics Upgrades
Airlines are attempting to increase avionics functionality through upgrades.
Pilots, Mechanics Increasingly Rely On Tablets 

If present trends continue, no airline pilot will fly without a tablet computer; nor will any aircraft mechanic attempt a repair without one. For the pilot, the devices represent the latest evolution in electronic flight bags (EFBs), which first made inroads, nearly two decades ago via the laptop computer. For mechanics, the far less bulky tablets will provide a new measure of mobility, as digital maintenance manuals can be downloaded and taken where the work is being done.

Airlines Seeking Better MRO Contracts, Payment Terms 

When it comes to technical purchasing, airlines across the spectrum are increasingly insisting upon greater flexibility in the fine print of maintenance support contracts.

“Today, the customer has gotten more sophisticated when negotiating maintenance contracts,” says Brian Ovington, principal marketing manager of aviation services for GE Aviation. “There is a lot more creativity in terms of the payment structures and the length of the agreements with respect to aircraft entry and exit of the program, and other terms.”

Airlines Changing MRO Supplier Clauses
In the arcane world of airline technical services purchasing, the dynamics are changing along with the economics of the industry.
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