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Digest
November 2016

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AAR Corporation has added a 26m wide, one ton capacity TC/American dual motor overhead crane at its Duluth, Minnesota MRO facilities. The crane is integrated with two existing TC/American cranes and operates through the full length of the 8,360m. hangar. The new crane allows for removal of components from the aircraft and placing on movable work stands for various inspection, repair, refurbishing and re-assembly operations. The two larger cranes handle larger components including entire engines, avionics, airframe modifications, structural repair and refurbished cabin assemblies. 

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AeroMobile, in partnership with Panasonic Avionics, has expanded its 3G inflight network with the connection of two Aer Lingus Airbus A330s. The 3G expansion coincides with the Irish national carrier launching two new routes from its Dublin hub to Bradley International and Newark airports in the US. The airline now has 10 connected aircraft. 

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Aerospace Turbine Services & Solutions (TS&S Aerospace) in Abu Dhabi has inducted its 100th IAE V2500 engine. The engine was delivered for a full performance restoration for Etihad Airways through a comprehensive agreement that both Etihad Airways and TS&S Aerospace have with International Aero Engines. 

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AeroVision International has purchased an ATR 42-300 for disassembly to parts. The engines, landing gear, propellers and all of the major components and subassemblies will be made available prior to the end of the year, once the reduce-to-parts process is initiated in October. Because the aircraft was EASA and EU Ops-1 compliant, European operators may be interested in the avionics to be offered. 

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AFI KLM E&M, as part of its MRO Lab innovation program, is implementing PROGNOS, a range of solutions based on exploiting the data from aircraft systems with a view to improving maintenance models and processes. AFI KLM E&M capitalised on the vast amount of data generated by the Air France and KLM fleets to develop its PROGNOS solutions and verify their operational relevance and performance before sharing these innovations with its customers. 

 

The PROGNOS Engine Health Monitoring (EHM) software is being designed to carry out statistical analyses of engine data to enable dynamic monitoring and predict failures using an early warning system for the fleets of Air France and KLM as well as client airlines. PROGNOS EHM is part of a series of projects and initiatives focused on Big Data that have already led to operational solutions such as PROGNOS A380, which extends the solution to bigger data volumes. Solutions based on the same approach are currently under development to support a range of other critical aircraft systems and components, including on the Boeing 787. 

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Airbus says its Engineering department, after a successful two year development programme, has refined a new carbon fibre bonded repair technique which is applicable initially to Airbus A350 XWB composite fuselage panels (but could be expanded to other composite structures later). This repair process is an alternative to the traditional bolted repair, with added value for customers, resulting from better aesthetics and a post-repair flush surface for a smooth aerodynamic profile. Logistically, the new process benefits from not requiring heavy equipment such as an autoclave to bond a repair patch onto the structure. 

 

Going forward, Airbus’ Customer Services, Engineering and Maintenance department will soon perform a final full-scale validation of the end-to-end process on the A350 MSN03 flight test aircraft, undertaken by an Airbus working party repair team. This will take place in a fully representative in-service operational environment, using all the relevant tools and means. These include: material kitting; a portable clean room to prepare pre-preg plies; a shelter to isolate the repair zone on aircraft and a repair jet machine to automatise damage removal. Typically, the most common types of damage to composite aircraft structures (which have caused aircraft to be taken out of operation) include lightning strike, hail and accidental foreign object impact. 

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AJW Technique continues to expand its international accreditation by achieving certification from the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC). This is the latest authority to add to the growing number of regionally specific approvals already achieved by the Montreal-based component MRO facility. The CAAC has authorised certification on over 3,000 airframe and engine components. Platform coverage includes most Airbus, Boeing and Bombardier derivatives. 

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Aviointeriors has announced that TUIfly in the Netherlands has recently ordered Columbus economy class seats for its Boeing 737NG aircraft for use as a crew rest seat. The seat complies with the EASA Class 3 crew rest requirements for a seat in an aircraft cabin or flight crew compartment that reclines at least 40° from the vertical and provides leg and foot rest support. 

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Avtrade has signed a new deal with Airbus which assigns Avtrade as an approved vendor of Airbus components. This selection means Avtrade can now directly supply Airbus’s extensive portfolio of Flight Hour Service customers. The move continues a collaborative effort between the two companies with Avtrade successfully satisfying Airbus’s comprehensive quality checks. 

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Chevron Group has signed a 10-year lease with Glasgow Prestwick Airport to set up a 14,000m. maintenance facility that will be ready to receive aircraft from January 2017. This will use an existing hangar capable of accommodating a Boeing 747. Chevron has an increasing line maintenance support operation at the airport but also plans to establish an MRO facility, a teardown/parts processing facility, aircraft parking area and management offices. Chevron tested out the airport earlier this year with a Boeing 757-200 aircraft from a major European airline. 

 

Chevron currently has a sister MRO facility at Cotswolds Airport, Kemble, with existing long-term contracts for base and line maintenance and storage. New Airbus and Boeing aircraft are expected in the near future. In addition to several C checks for third-party operators, it decommissioned four aircraft in 2015. 

 

BAE Systems Regional Aircraft said it welcomed the move of Chevron Technical Services from Kemble to Prestwick International Airport as this will significantly add to the range of aerospace aftermarket support activities available to the growing aerospace cluster at Prestwick. Chevron is an approved BAe 146/Avro RJ MRO provider and is entirely complementary to its future strategic aims of being involved in the design and installation of bespoke aircraft modifications and in supporting Prestwick’s Spaceport Scotland ambitions. 

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