LONDON—Delta’s MRO arm is focusing on building up its Airbus A330-airframe-maintenance capability at its 350,000-sq.-ft. Minnesota hangar in Minneapolis-St. Paul, sales and marketing executives said at the MRO Europe show here.
This week, the airline announced an exclusive, three-year airframe-maintenance deal for Virgin Atlantic’s 10 Airbus A330s, which includes aircraft modifications and C checks. This follows the five-year heavy-maintenance deal that Delta signed with Hawaiian Airlines in March for that carrier’s A330 fleet, which is expected to reach 22 aircraft by the end of the year. At that time, Delta also said the facility would become an A330 “center of excellence.”
Today, Delta TechOps has at least 60 or more aircraft under A330-maintenance contracts, with just more than one-half of those coming from the airline’s own fleet, Marketing Manager Tim Boldt said. Aviation Week’s fleet data show that Delta has 32 older A330-200s and -300s, with average ages of 10.5 and 10.1 years, respectively.
The hangar, which can hold seven narrowbodies and three widebodies, has both FAA and EASA certifications. However, the facility is “not fully loaded,” today, as only 1-2 aircraft are continually in the shop for maintenance at a given time, he says.
Overall, European customers comprise around only 10% of TechOps’ MRO business, Boldt said. The airline is aiming to grow that share, and plans to have an increased focus on A330 components, such as landing gear and thrust reversers, he said.