Inside MRO News Briefs And Contracts (February 2018)

MRO providers worldwide are adding hangar capacity to accommodate airline fleet growth.


Lufthansa Technik Invests in Hamburg Engine Facility

Lufthansa Technik says it is readying its Hamburg engine center for future growth by investing in new technologies in its engine services division.

The German aftermarket provider said around €7 million ($8.6 million) has been invested in a new competence center specializing in engine case repair work along with an X-ray facility for a broad range of engine components.

New tools and equipment will form the basis of its new repair procedures in Hamburg. Over time, the company believes there is room to increase the variety of engine types overhauled at the facility. Lufthansa Technik says the engine division assumes orders for the component services will double over the next three years.

For the X-ray center, Lufthansa Technik says it will be able to screen components in both digital and analog form. The MRO already has plans to further extend capacity at the X-ray center with construction earmarked to begin in 2019.

“Our new center of excellence bundles the competence needed for around 450 repair procedures, some of which are very complex,” said Marcel Rose, head of the competence center in the engine services division at Lufthansa Technik. 

The investment announcements follow the readying of its Hamburg facility for the arrival of the new CFM International Leap 1A and 1B, which will power the Airbus A320neo and the Boeing 737 MAX, respectively. Lufthansa Technik confirmed in December 2017 that the narrowbody successor to the CFM56-family engines is expected to enter its main base starting next year.

Other engine activities outside of Hamburg include Lufthansa Technik partnering up with fellow German company MTU Aero Engines for overhaul and repair services on Pratt & Whitney’s PW1000G-series geared turbofan engines. Engine Maintenance Europe, known as EME Aero for short, will begin operating in Poland from 2020.

VD Gulf Eyes Sharjah Expansion

VD Gulf will look to add capacity at its United Arab Emirates facility at Sharjah Airport amid growing regional MRO demand.

Mikhail Khoroshaev, director general of the MRO provider, says high demand in the surrounding region for its services, along with an increase in passenger numbers, will probably make it necessary for the company to add new capacity.

“We’ll reach capacity, and there will be a need for another hangar in close proximity over the next two years,” he says. “Expansion opportunities are being reviewed, and we are looking to discuss a new facility close to our hangar with the local government and the airport.”

The current 22,000-m2 (237,00-ft.2) hangar, built in 2013, can accommodate two Boeing 747-400s and six narrowbody aircraft (Airbus A320s or Boeing 737s) at one time. Capabilities include line maintenance, base maintenance, component services and cabin work.

With Boeing having gradually wound down the 747 production program and with some carriers signaling their intention to retire the aircraft, Khoroshaev nevertheless remains optimistic about 747 repair opportunities in the future.

“We see the 747 aftermarket as a long-term business for us,” he says. “Production is slowing, even on the newer 747-8; however, there are still a lot of aircraft in operation that need MRO support.”


AAR Aircraft Component Repair Amsterdam won an 8-year Utair Aviation contract to provide component repair and exchange for its 737 and ATR fleets, as well as reliability-engineering support to improve on-wing component reliability.

Aero Engine Solutions, Florida, was chosen by GA Telesis to provide repaired/serviceable CFM56-5B/7B materials for Gates.

Aersale was selected to perform a C check on Orbis Flying Eye Hospital (MD-10) at Goodyear, Arizona.

Etihad Airways Engineering won a Kenya Airways contract for 737/787 A checks.

GA Telesis MRO Services signed a long-term repair/overhaul license agreement and parts supply agreement with Honeywell to provide repairs on over 175 base part numbers and LRU repair items and source over 1,200 material supply line items.

Latam Airlines Group plans to build a 65,000-m2 (700,000-ft.2) line maintenance center at Sao Paulo Guarulhos Airport by the second half of 2018 to simultaneously service seven widebodies or 19 narrowbodies; scheduled and heavy maintenance will remain at Sao Carlos.

Sabena Technics was selected by Airbus to build and operate a €23 million ($28.5 million), 7,000-m2 paint shop (for widebodies) at Toulouse by late 2019; it will then operate four such facilities totaling about 15,000 m2 to handle 150 aircraft per year.

Rolls-Royce was chosen by Standard

Aero to provide RB211-535E4 maintenance at San Antonio starting in early 2019 as its end-of-life engine maintenance service partner under CareNetwork. Rolls-Royce says about 1,000 RB211-535E4s are in service.

SR Technics extended a Ural Airlines contract for CFM56-5B MRO for six years.

Turkish Technic secured a contract from Airblue, Pakistan to perform C checks on four A321-200s.

Contract Source: SpeedNews

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