Blog posts tagged in Aircraft

Introduction

Whilst Aircraft fuel-tank entry is essential for both inspection and modification it poses a number of hazards to maintenance personnel performing the work.

Fuel-tank work can be accomplished as required without placing personnel at risk through effective preparation and training.

The Maintenance Organisation should strive to ensure a safe, healthy work environment for fuel-tank personnel by identifying potential hazards, developing control measures, and instructing personnel in the specific procedures to be followed during all Aircraft fuel-tank maintenance activities.

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Primary Hazards related to Fuel Tank Working

There are a number of potential hazards which fuel-tank maintenance personnel may experience whilst engaged in Fuel Tank Work however the 2 primary hazards are:

a) Chemical
b) Physical

Considering Chemical Hazards and their Consequences - Fuel

Off course the most commonly recognized hazard is the jet fuel itself which is a flammable liquid and will ignite if the temperature of the fuel is such that vapour is created. (The temperature at which the vapours of a flammable liquid can ignite is known as the "flash point".)

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The Elements of Aircraft Maintenance – Part 4

An article by our Guest Blogger and SAS Instructor and Consultant Kevin Rookes

Welcome to the final part of a four-part series that explains what constitutes maintenance from an FAA perspective and what are the differences between the elements that make up maintenance.

In this article we look at what is not a maintenance activity.

ACTIVITIES WHICH ARE NOT MAINTENANCE

It is mistakenly believed that if something has the potential to cause harm to the aircraft or its operation, the activity should be covered as a maintenance activity. That perception probably has ties to the language that is used in the definition of a “major repair” in § 1.1: “Major repair means a repair: (1) That, if improperly done, might appreciably affect weight, balance, structural strength, performance, powerplant operation, flight characteristics, or other qualities affecting airworthiness…” This has led people to improperly classify some activities that could affect the airworthiness of the aircraft, if done improperly, as maintenance. These activities include:

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The Elements of Aircraft Maintenance – Part 3

An article by our Guest Blogger and SAS Instructor and Consultant Kevin Rookes

Welcome to the third part of a four-part series that explains what constitutes maintenance from an FAA perspective and what are the differences between the elements that make up maintenance?

This article provides an overview

REPLACEMENT OF PARTS

The replacement of parts is the removal and/or installation of parts on a product or article, and therefore, logically a maintenance task. However, there are some specific tasks that require further explanation.

Removing and Reinstalling the Same Part

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The Elements of Aircraft Maintenance – Part 2

An article by our Guest Blogger and SAS Instructor and Consultant Kevin Rookes

Welcome to the second part of a four-part series that explains what constitutes maintenance from an FAA perspective and what are the differences between the elements that make up maintenance?This article considers what makes up overhaul, repair and preservation.

OVERHAUL

An overhaul includes several separate maintenance activities to restore a product or article to a condition that will give a reasonable assurance of operation for a specified amount of time. The term “overhaul” is mentioned in several places in the FAR’s but this article uses the definition in 14 CFR section 43.2(a), which states that an overhaul consists of disassembly, cleaning, inspection, repaired as necessary, reassembly, and testing.

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The Elements of Aircraft Maintenance – Part 1

An article by our Guest Blogger and SAS Instructor and Consultant Kevin Rookes

This is the first part of a four-part series that explains what constitutes maintenance from an FAA perspective and what are the differences between the elements that make up maintenance. 

The term “maintenance” is defined in Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 1, §1.1 as “inspection, overhaul, repair, preservation, and the replacement of parts, but excludes preventive maintenance.”
While this definition has been around for a long time, differences between the five elements that make up maintenance (i.e., inspection, overhaul, repair, preservation, and the replacement of parts) is not always clearly understood. The definition of maintenance does not include the terms “rebuild” or “rebuilt”. Those functions are limited to the Design Approval Holder (DAH) (i.e., manufacturer) with Production Certificate (PC) approval using its approved design data.

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Bridging Checks Introduction

Why would we want to carry out a Bridging Check?

Typically because we have recently acquired a “new to our organisation” aircraft and it is on a different maintenance schedule.

A bridging check is normally required to address tasks which have either not been done by the previous operator (maybe they are not applicable for a particular operator) or alternatively the tasks may have been done at different intervals when directly compared with your existing Maintenance Programme or Schedule.

A ‘bridging check’ is not in itself a maintenance package; rather it is the result of a detailed analysis of the pre and post transfer tasks to identify any differences which need to be addressed during the transfer bridging check.

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What does the FAA Say about Limit of Validity?

The limit of validity (LOV) represents an operational limit based on fatigue test evidence that supports the maintenance program. The FAA defines the LOV as “the period of time (in flight cycles, flight hours, or both) up to which it has been demonstrated by test evidence, analysis and, if available, service experience and teardown inspections, that widespread fatigue damage will not occur in the airplane structure.” It is further defined as the point in the structural life of an airplane at which there is significantly increased risk of uncertainties in structural performance and probable development of WFD.

Once the airworthiness limitations containing the LOV are approved by the FAA, an airplane may not operate beyond the LOV.

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A Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) is an FAA  or EASA approved major modification or repair to an existing type certified aircraft, engine or propeller. As it adds to the existing type certificate, it is deemed 'supplemental'. As its name suggests, an STC is a certificate. It defines the product design change, states how the modification affects the existing type design, and lists serial number effectively. It also identifies the certification basis, listing specific regulatory compliance for the design change.

An STC being a supplemental type design approval for a major alteration and specific to a make and model or even a specific serial number as a one “off” STC

The STC Holder – STCH remains ultimately responsible for the certification of the modification.  An STC is a design approval, however it doesn’t allow the holder to produce anything. (typically created by Part 21 /FAR 21 Subpart J Organisation Design Approval Holder (DAH) Design Organisation Approval (DOA)).

Note - The STC, which incorporates by reference the related Type Certificate (TC), approves not only the modification, but how the modification affects the original design.

The application must be made in the form and manner prescribed by the FAA  or EASA.

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EASAonline.com (www.easaonline.com ) looks at the ins and outs of achieving a Part 66 Aircraft Maintenance Engineers Licence

Background

EASA Regulated Aircraft Maintenance is interesting and highly professional moreover Licensed Aircraft Engineers are essential to maintain the global aviation industry. Employment in the field of aviation offers the potential of a wide and varied career with an attractive salary.

As a Part 66 AMEL you are on your way to Certifying Aircraft to Fly ! (Issuing a Certificate of Release to Service CRS). Licensed Aircraft Engineers perform maintenance and other activities on Aircraft (often with modern equipment and advanced technology.) Ensuring the rectification of all defects as well as repairing airframe structures, engines, and avionic systems.  

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Introduction

As a career starting in Aviation or Airport Services Aircraft Maintenance either Base or Line may be just the job for you!

Line maintenance is very satisfying and rewarding with the opportunity to progress to higher positions either within the organisation or in other organisations. 

Aircraft technicians and Engineers typically specialise as either B1 Airframe Engine & Electrical or B2 Avionic plus Electrical.  B1 Engineers who service engines, airframes and hydraulic and pneumatic systems, and the associated electrical systems and B2 avionic Engineers who service and overhaul the electronic systems, instruments, flight control, navigation and communication systems of aircraft as well as Aircraft Electrical Systems (task shared with B1)

Line maintenance essentially is maintenance that is performed on aircraft while they still remain operational, (carrying out routine maintenance of the aircraft on the ground during the turnaround between flights) whereas for Base Maintenance the level of maintenance is somewhat deeper. (Carrying out full servicing of the aircraft within the hangar at regular intervals typically at C check level) 

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A competent and effective Maintenance planning group is an essential attribute to any efficient operators CAMO. Without any doubt the opportunity exists in every organization to deliver improvements to the existing Maintenance Planning processes - and these are improvements which may contribute to real cost savings. The Aircraft Maintenance Process is a major cost centre within the aircraft operating environment thus providing a significant opportunity to deliver optimization and saving.

EASAOnline.com has developed a suite of online training courses which address the challenging role of Maintenance Planning - a total of 5 separate courses each with its own certificate.

Who is EASAonline?

EASAOnline (EOL) is a service provided by Sofema Aviation Services, offering a range of EASA compliant online video regulatory courses. EOL is supported by the European Aviation Institute (EAI), an EASA Part 147 approved Maintenance Training Organization (MTO) with Certificate of Approval No RO.147.0003.

 

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The following information introduces the different Aircraft Maintenance Engineers license types which are available to European EASA Part 66 Licensed aircraft Engineers.
 
The Basic, non-type rated license also known as a Category “A” License does not in itself convey certification rights, directly but allows the holder to certify “limited and simple maintenance tasks only” as specified on his (or her) “personal authorization Document”.
 
On the basis of the Maintenance Engineers License, together with satisfactory demonstration of competency and knowledge of organizational procedures the personal authorization document is issued by an approved Part-145 organization. 

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SofemaOnline features European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) & Gulf Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) selection of Technical Terms to be found in Aircraft Technical Records

Part 2: Check – GVI – DVI – SI
An examination (e.g., an inspection or test) to determine the physical integrity and/or functional capability of an item.

GVI - General Visual Inspection is the “Basic Inspection” which is usually performed without removing panels (other than quick release).
DVI - Detailed Inspection requires additional activity which will be identified within the task.
SI - Special Inspection will also be identified typically relates to Non Destructive Testing (NDT).

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When we consider the total contents of the aircraft work package we have a distinct number of elements:

a) Routine - these are the tasks which are packaged into maintenance checks and assigned from the aircraft maintenance program
b) Service Bulletins, Mods and AD driven - this package forms a group of activates which can potentially be quite disruptive and as a consequence deserves due consideration in respect of the various planning considerations to support an effective delivery of maintenance
c) Deferred Maintenance - Tasks which are carried over from Line Maintenance deferred defects or defects deferred in accordance with the MEL
d) Defects found during the maintenance check inspection activities - These defects are discovered during maintenance inspection of the various aircraft zones

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Airlines perform aircraft maintenance in order to ensure aviation safety and schedule punctuality. Sitting alongside this is the desire to also perform efficiently, arranging the manpower to have the optimum level of competence requires a considerable effort to ensure that the availability matches the requirement.

Whilst the “almost” universal approach to large aircraft maintenance afforded by MSG 3 delivers the potential of a very effective task orientated maintenance program, the very real challenge presented to Planners is how to decide on the best way to package these task so that the most effective workscope may be compiled to align with the available maintenance capacity.

Within every company exists the balance between availability, utilisation and maintenance requirements to understand fully the criteria which is applicable and to make focused decisions becomes the key to optimising the cost of maintenance.

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The Continuous Airworthiness Management Organization “CAMO” is essentially responsible for 4 primary functions: Planning, Technical Records, Engineering, and Reliability. These groups work together to ensure that the Aircraft remain fully compliant with all requirements concerning the aircraft maintenance management and associated oversight.

Within the CAMO department the Maintenance Planning Group has a range of responsibilities including the delivery of the aircraft maintenance work package to ensure the aircraft remains fully compliant with the Maintenance Program. However this is only part of the story, in a way this could be considered to be the “fixed” portion of the workload, as it does not fluctuate rather it is based on the Maintenance Planning Document “MPD”.

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