Introduction to EASA Compliant Maintenance Planning

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The regulatory obligations to ensure that the correct maintenance is performed may be found in EASA Part M Subpart C. It is well known that after expenditure on fuel, the cost of aircraft maintenance is one of the most significant overheads, as such it also presents opportunities to optimize which may in turn lead to savings.

We also need to consider the danger of “under maintained aircraft”. A company can lose its reputation and become associated with an unreliable service, whereas building up a reputation for sterling operation may take a long time.

It is critical for Operators to not only achieve but to maintain high standards of both a safe and a reliable services, as well as to pay attention to optimizing their profits.

There are a number of measure which operators may use to demonstrate effective maintenance, reliability data being a leading factor amongst them.

Another factor may be considered as a significant indicator is aircraft operability which may also be considered as one of the major requirements by Operators. Aircraft operability is the aircraft’s ability to meet the operational requirements in terms of operational reliability (i.e. the percentage of scheduled flights that depart and arrive without incurring a chargeable technical/operational interruption).

A major step forward in the developments of the Aircraft Maintenance process was the introduction by the Air Transport Association (ATA) task force of the Maintenance Steering Group (MSG) process which is currently known as MSG 3.

MSG 3 is in fact a task-oriented, maintenance process which adopted a decision tree methodology (allowing a consistency of approach) with the primary purpose of:

a) Separating safety-related items from economic
b) Defining adequate treatment of hidden functional failures

As a result, one of the principal benefits derived from the MSG-3 process is that it has been shown to produce higher safety standards (As well as delivering significant saving when compared to its predecessor MSG 2).

The saving in maintenance expenditure is primarily due to the improved method of analysis to determine the most effective maintenance. This is achieved by the use of a decision logic driven intelligent approach, to deliver maintenance in terms of selecting tasks that are actually effective.

Using MSG-3 logic methodology, all potential tasks or activities are assessed by the Maintenance Review Board at the highest level (system level) rather than the component level, in other words.

As a result, through analysis it can be demonstrated that the functional failure of a particular system in fact had no appreciable effect on the operational safety, or that any economic impact or repercussions were not significant in terms of impact or cost, as a result there was no need for a routine maintenance activity.

Sofema Aviation Services is pleased to present offering online training in both EASA Maintenance Planning as well as Aircraft Production Planning techniques together with industry best practice. For more information please email us or

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