Recent blog posts

Sofema Online (SOL) takes into consideration the exposure which is presented by Foreign Object Debris (FOD)

The Menace of Foreign Object Debris in Maintenance Overhaul Facilities: An Exploration of Safety Exposure

>> Foreign Object Debris (FOD) refers to a substance, debris, or particle which is alien to the component or system and therefore has the potential to cause damage.
>> Foreign Object Debris in maintenance overhaul facilities is a significant concern due to the potential damage to aircraft, associated safety risks, and considerable financial implications.
>> A comprehensive approach is required to address this problem, encompassing technological solutions, rigorous procedures, continuous training, and a robust FOD awareness culture.
>> Preventing FOD in these facilities is not just about maintaining efficiency or reducing costs but is crucial for ensuring the safety of operations.

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Sofema Online (SOL)  reviews best practices for a routine Aircraft Cabin Cleaning Operation – Consider the Following Example Work Instruction

Introduction & Safety Precautions

  • Ensure an organized approach to cleaning. Utilize the right tools, technology, and cleaning solutions for optimal results.
  • Always wear appropriate protective equipment, such as gloves and masks.
  • Ensure the aircraft is properly ventilated during cleaning.
  • Store cleaning chemicals in a safe location, away from children and pets.
  • Follow the manufacturer's instructions for all cleaning equipment and solutions.
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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the role of CPCP ADs and the responsibility for updating the Aircraft Maintenance Program (AMP)


Each CPCP, whether originally mandated by AD or later incorporated into the MPD for an aircraft, includes certain definitions to lay the groundwork and baselines for the programs.

Corrosion is a progressive condition and generally becomes more serious as it moves deeper into the grain of the affected metal. Therefore, different levels of corrosion are defined: Level 1 being the least serious, Level 2 being increasingly problematic, and Level 3 being the highest. However, these definitions were never standardized, although they are largely well-understood by CAAs, manufacturers, and the industry.

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Sofema Online (SOL) reviews the development of CPCP from Standalone to incorporation within the MRB process

Introduction “Corrosion Prevention and Control Programme” (CPCP)

This means a document reflecting a systematic approach to prevent and control corrosion in an aeroplane’s primary structure, consisting of basic corrosion tasks, including inspections, areas subject to those tasks, defined corrosion levels and compliance times (implementation thresholds and repeat intervals).

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the procedures for completion and use of the authorized release certificate, FAA Form 8130-3, Airworthiness Approval Tag

General Considerations and Comments (for details please see the order)

Issuance of FAA Form 8130-3 as an airworthiness approval does not constitute an export approval, because compliance with a specific country’s or jurisdiction’s special import requirements may not have been verified.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers best practices and health and safety requirements to ensure the correct management of potable water for use in aircraft

Introduction to Aircraft Portable Water

Maintaining the quality of potable water on aircraft requires regular testing, vigilant monitoring, and adherence to best practices. Proper treatment and handling procedures, combined with a robust testing regimen, can ensure that passengers and crew have access to safe drinking water during their flights.

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 Sofema Online looks at the essential elements of a functioning EASA Part 145 Organisation

Risk management

Risk Management is primarily comprised of two elements.

>> Hazard identification

>> Risk Assessment (and mitigation)

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Sofema Online (SOL) Considers the procedures for completion and use of Electronic Authorized Release Certificate, FAA Form 8130-3, Airworthiness Approval Tag

General Procedures for the Use of Electronic FAA Form 8130-3

>> The use of the electronic transfer FAA Form 8130-3 procedures is strictly voluntary when issuing FAA Form 8130-3 for its intended purpose as specified in chapters 2, 3, and 4 of this order.
>> If authorized persons elect to implement the following procedures, it must be understood that both the originator and recipient of the electronic form must comply with the procedures in this chapter. If for whatever reason the data recipient is unable to accept the electronic form, the issuance of the form must be in paper format in accordance with the appropriate chapter of this order.
>> Those authorized persons who elect to issue the electronic FAA Form 8130-3 for products and articles must comply with the standardized set of data formats, the ATA Spec 2000.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the requirements related to manpower within the FAR 145 Organisation

Introduction - FAR 145 Subpart D - Personnel

Each certificated repair station must:

>> Designate a repair station employee as the accountable manager;
>> Provide qualified personnel to plan, supervise, perform, and approve for return to service the maintenance, preventive maintenance, or alterations performed under the repair station certificate and operations specifications;
>> Ensure it has a sufficient number of employees with the training or knowledge and experience in the performance of maintenance, preventive maintenance, or alterations authorized by the repair station certificate and operations specifications to ensure all work is performed in accordance with part 43; and
>> Determine the abilities of its noncertificated employees performing maintenance functions based on training, knowledge, experience, or practical tests.

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Sofema Online (SOL) looks at a technique for data analysis

Analytical Techniques to Support MCC Recurrent Defect Analysis - Introduction

>> Pareto analysis is premised on the idea that 80% of a project's benefit can be achieved by doing 20% of the work- or, conversely, 80% of problems can be traced to 20% of the causes.
>> Pareto analysis is a powerful quality and decision-making tool. In the most general sense, it is a technique for getting the necessary facts needed for setting priorities.

Steps of Pareto Analysis

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the reporting process for advising the Federal Aviation Administration regarding the existence of Unairworthy Conditions related to Aircraft, Engines, Propellers or Components thereof

Introduction – Ref FAA 45.63 Reports of Defects or Unairworthy Conditions.

Each certificated domestic repair station shall report to the Administrator within 72 hours after it discovers any serious defect in, or other recurring unairworthy condition of, an aircraft, powerplant, or propeller, or any component of any of them.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the requirements to comply with Maintenance Annex Guidance (MAG) change 8


Contracting to EASA-approved Facilities

If the repair station sends an article to another organization that is EASA-approved and FAA-certificated, and that person or entity exercises the privileges of its certificate by assuming responsibility for approving for return to service each item on which it has worked, that process is not considered contracting (Ensure the contracted organization is properly certificated to perform that work.)

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers best practices for managing the required records and documents related to EASA Part 147 nominated persons.


Records of all instructional and exam invigilation staff may be maintained in digital and/or hard copy.

>> The purpose of the records is to support the scope of their authorization.
>> All records are kept up to date and securely stored under the control of the nominated Training Manager.
>> Access to the records is restricted to the Training Manager, Quality Manager and Administration Staff.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the role of a Functional Hazard Assessment as part of the Aircraft Type Certificate Certification Process.


A Functional Hazard Assessment (FHA) is a systematic evaluation conducted to identify and assess potential hazards associated with the functions and behaviours of a system or process. It is common to ensure safety and mitigate risks.

>> The FHA focuses on analyzing the functional aspects of a system to identify potential hazards and their potential consequences.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the typical process to manage the assessment of Practical Assessors

A practical Assessor is a nominated person who will determine the level of practical knowledge/practical skills of the trainees on a particular module, element, or part thereof. The function may include the drafting and/or the selection of practical tasks, as well as the performance of the practical instruction.

General Information concerning Assessment and acceptance of staff

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Sofema Online (SOL) reviews a typical process for the performance of EASA Part 147 Type Training Practical Assessments


Practical assessments are conducted to evaluate the knowledge and skills level of the trainee required to perform safe maintenance and required in support of aircraft-type practical training.

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Steve Bentley FRAeS CEO of Sofema Aviation Services (SAS) considers in depth a number of issues and challenges which are faced by the Industry

>> Due to various misunderstandings related to the need for regulatory training and

>> Obligations related to the management of competence.

Third Country Approved Organizations are responsible directly for the competence of all staff required to discharge EASA Regulatory obligations.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers managing MCC Defect Processing and Actions

Introduction - Development of a Defect Control Procedure – Example Short Content

A description of the defect rectification and control procedures, including details of:

o The methods used to detect and report recurring defects.
o The procedures for scheduling the rectification of defects whose repair has been deferred..."
o Procedures for recording and rectification of defects, including the identification of recurring defects.
o The complexity of the system used to control defects, including rectification and deferral, as well as identifying and handling recurring defects will vary according to the type of aircraft operated and the size and nature of the operation.

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Sofema Online (SOL) looks at the typical duties of EASA Part 147 Practical Assessors - Examiners.

Introduction - Examiners are responsible to the Training Manager for:

>> Ensuring that procedures established in this Maintenance Training Organisation Exposition MTOE 1 and Training Procedures are fully complied with.
>> The security of the examination question databank, or examination papers when under his/her control.
>> The selection of the examination questions/papers appropriate to the phase of the training course being examined in accordance with the Training Procedures. Phase examination questions will reflect the course syllabus material, level of instruction and learning objectives.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers typical auditing elements across multiple business areas and elements. The following issues and challenges are considered for each element.

>> Related to the effectiveness of ensuring EASA compliance as per EASA and ICAO requirements, certified aerodromes shall demonstrate and continually monitor compliance with the requirements through audits and inspections.

Ensuring Best Practices related to EASA-compliant Auditing and Oversight of European airports.

EASA-compliant auditing and oversight are multi-faceted processes that require a comprehensive approach. Regular audits, continuous training, and a proactive approach to safety and compliance are essential for ensuring effective and compliant aerodrome operations in Europe.

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