Inside MRO News Briefs And Contracts, February 2017

Qantas opens widebody hangar at LAX, Rolls unveils lessor-focused service, Magnetic MRO adds VR interiors capability, and GOL drops Gogo installation time on Boeing 737-800.

Highlights

Qantas Opens New Widebody Hangar at LAX

Qantas opened a new maintenance hangar at Los Angeles International Airport that increases capacity for its own widebody aircraft and allows it to target third-party maintenance work on Airbus A380s and Boeing 747s and 787s, a Qantas spokeswoman tells Aviation Week. One widebody up to A380 size can fit in the hangar, which has an adjustable tail dock, but up to four A380s can be worked on simultaneously. There are parking pads on either side of the hangar with walkways connecting them to the workshops, and another aircraft can be parked in front of the hangar. The facility will be used for line maintenance on the 747-400s and A380s Qantas operates on its North America routes. It will also handle 787-9s when the carrier begins flying them on its Melbourne-Los Angeles route in December. 

Rolls-Royce Unveils Lessor-Focused Service

Rolls-Royce has announced a new services program tailored for leasing customers called LessorCare, which will unify a range of services under one framework across all Trent engine types, yet still give lessors flexibility to adapt the level of service through the engine’s life. Rolls-Royce is working with Dublin-based lessor AerCap on the design and introduction of the program, which it expects to roll out to more leasing companies later in 2017. It also plans to work with other lessor customers in the development of LessorCare, targeting closer integration between engine services and the lease agreements that lessors have in place with carriers.

Magnetic MRO Adds VR Interiors Capability

Magnetic MRO has installed the HTC Vive virtual reality (VR) system in the interiors workshop at its facility in Tallinn, Estonia, for the 3-D-visioning of aircraft interiors. The company will use the HTC Vive headset supported by specialist software, to enable customers to view how an aircraft’s interior looks once changes to color, material or texture are implemented. 

The VR system will allow users to try out different configurations, looks  and modifications to better understand changes to the interior.  “Through this recent development, both our customers and our interior workshop department will get to see the bigger picture before rushing on a decision and changing the seat colors and/or carpet texture based on just an idea,” says Risto Maeots, CEO of Magnetic MRO. “It doesn’t only provide a highly cost-effective solution for our customers, but it also plays a key role for a significantly time-efficient answer for everyone.”

GOL Drops Gogo Installation Time on 737-800s

GOL plans to finish installing the Gogo 2Ku inflight connectivity system in its Boeing 737-800s by October 2018, according to Marco Gallinaro, the airline’s maintenance manager. By that time, GOL will have installed the Wi-Fi system in about 100 -800s. The first installation, finished in October, took 12 days, but “we’re in the middle of a learning curve and now take eight working days,” he notes. Gallinaro hopes to cut that to five days soon, thanks to pre-kitting parts, Lean initiatives and better advance preparation of the aircraft. The airline installs the system in a dedicated line at its in-house maintenance facility in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, where it performs heavy maintenance. “We are also just starting installing some systems during heavy checks,” when about “90% of what needs to be dismantled to install the system is already done,” says Alberto Castro Correnti, GOL’s maintenance director. With the two options, he expects GOL to install 60-80 systems this year. GOL hopes to receive a supplemental type certificate to install the Gogo 2Ku system on its 737-700s in the fourth quarter. The airline operates about 30 of the aircraft.

Contracts

AAR extended a power-by-the component support contract with Bluebird Cargo of Iceland for its fleet of five Boeing 737 Classics.

AFI-KLM E&M received a Xiamen Airlines contract to provide GEnx support (maintenance/spares) out of Amsterdam for six Boeing 787-9s.

Boeing Commercial Aviation Services won a Cargolux contract to provide landing gear exchange services for 14 Boeing 747-8Fs.

GA Telesis Engine Services of Finland received approval from the Civil Aviation Administration of China to perform CFM56-5B, CFM56-7B and CF6-80C2B overhauls.

Joramco won a Lufthansa contract to perform C checks and cabin modifications on two Airbus A340s at Amman, Jordan, in the first quarter.

Magnetic MRO of Estonia won an Air Baltic contract to maintain Bombardier Q400 wheels and brakes and Bombardier CS300 wheels

SR Technics was selected by Edelweiss Air of Switzerland to upgrade cabins of four Airbus A340-300s at Zurich over two years.

VAS Aero Services upgraded/expanded its Seattle facility (supporting its partnership with Boeing), which includes a 400,000-ft.2 warehouse for PC700 production parts, a 50,750-ft.2 processing center and expanded offices.

FL Technics Indonesia has taken a Boeing 737-800 from domestic carrier Batik Air for a C check, which it plans to complete in early February.

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