MRO Special Industry Guide Vol IV

Page 1

FLIP COVER JULY22.qxp_Layout 1 22/06/2022 13:51 Page 1




Keep on Budget with Your Business Jet Upgrade Pratt & Whitney Enhances Service Offerings Engine Overhaul: Understanding the Costs & Processes Engine Overhaul: Tips to Avoid Unnecessary Disruption Hourly Maintenance Programs: Getting Value for Money Rolls-Royce: Striving for Engine Support Perfection Cabin Electronics: New Jet Functionality for Older Planes Measuring ‘Cost’ versus ‘Value’ of a Flight Panel Retrofit Seven Factors Driving Your Next Cabin Refurbishment

2 - F/LIST July dps.qxp_Layout 1 23/06/2022 07:42 Page 1


F/LIST Spearheads Sustainability in the Cabin

©Embraer The new sustainable products do not mean compromising on quality and will meet the same exacting standards of current F/LIST products. Carbon fibre can be used as it reduces operating costs due to its light weight nature.


ustainability has become a watchword for the future of Business Aviation with the aerospace industry collectively navigating a pathway to a carbon neutral future by 2050. It is a bold ambition with discussions around sustainability dominated by talk of electric, hydrogen and hybrid propulsion programs, as well as sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) which is available now, although supply is still limited. In the cabin sustainability is already making its presence felt. OEMs and owners have started to question in detail how products are made and processed, which is positioning sustainability as part of the competitive landscape. The availability of sustainable options is influencing purchasing decisions and the need to offer attractive, compliant, competitively priced interiors that do not compromise on quality, is now critical. Anticipating and responding to these needs is Austria-based F/LIST. The third-generation family company is combining years of heritage, knowledge and craftsmanship with contemporary technology, new materials, and cross-industry knowledge sharing, to satisfy the increased demand for lightweight, high-performing, eco-friendly concepts.

Visionary Perspective Mélanie Prince, Head of Innovation at F/LIST takes a visionary

2 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

perspective leading a dynamic team to make the seemingly impossible possible. The eclectic mix of experts include carbon fiber technology professionals from the F1 sector, jewellery designers and architects, amongst others. “To enhance the passenger experience and disrupt the interiors sector we need to dream a little bit and change the status quo,” Prince says as she explains how her colleagues collaborate to define novel, environmentally friendly concepts that will add inherent value to the customer experience, and the asset itself. “We are ambassadors for cabin sustainability, and we can only ensure success by introducing new thinking around the subject. If we give our customers intriguing, stylish, yet functional materials we believe it will encourage them to think sustainability-first when it comes to creating a cabin interior. We must convey that sustainability does not mean compromise in the cabin.” F/LIST is already marketing decorative surfaces made from rattan, and textiles produced from agricultural byproducts, and Prince believes there is a world of opportunities. “Our incredible new product portfolio will surprise and delight with its superior quality, design potential and elegant beauty as we provide the opportunity to turn design fiction into design fact.”


2 - F/LIST July dps.qxp_Layout 1 30/06/2022 11:26 Page 2


Open-Minded Approach F/LIST embraces external industry experience and the innovators act as a conduit between aviation and a whole new set of suppliers. Prince’s team regularly liaises with start-ups devising impressive next-generation eco-materials, but that don’t have the experience of, or voice in, the aviation industry. Luxury brands are also benefitting from the opportunities provided to have their high-end products redirected from the catwalk to the cabin. “We keep an open mind, examining every opportunity, but the screening process is intense. We must make sure materials are fire retardant and durable, that they are relevant and practical to work with, and that we can modify and repurpose it for the aerospace sector. We then develop unique, attractive components that broaden cabin design options. It is a long iterative process, involves an element of failure, yet stimulates amazing results.”

Previously Unseen Materials The enhanced F/LIST portfolio will introduce previously unseen materials to operators, OEMs and completion centers, and demonstrate that sustainable materials can perform as well, if not better than existing products, last as long, and are breathtakingly stunning.

As our understanding of, and passion for natural products expands, we are creating innovative bio-based materials by applying bionic design to create smart structures that support loads and forces exactly where necessary,” she continues. “We are integrating plant fibers instead of synthetic fibers, as well as incorporating byproducts and materials from biorefineries. The results are strong, yet light components, that form cabin frameworks.” For F/LIST sustainability extends beyond the product. It is applied across the complete value chain. From fair and responsibly managed raw material sourcing to the use of solar and renewable energy, to supporting sustainable circular economies, F/LIST seeks to optimize the value delivered to the customer, while simultaneously minimizing resource consumption. This perspective leads to game-changing business models that encompass extended reuse, repair, and refurbishment, and reinforces the sustainability message. Even the buildings are sustainably managed. The Thomasberg, Austria, headquarters is river cooled, the production plant is heated with renewable energy and intelligent LED lighting brings light to the interiors.

“Our customers are going to be astounded as we extend the parameters of cabin design,” Prince says. “Business Aviation travellers are surrounded by our products in the cabin, which supports engagement with sustainability. The cabin interior will inspire debate and discussion amongst peers, and most importantly influence their environmental mindset in the skies.”

“Our mission is to manufacture tangible and pragmatic innovations that support the sustainability narrative. If customers approach us with one idea, and we can transform it into a sustainable concept, that really motivates us,” Prince summarizes. “Our goal is to sustainably create eco-friendly products that meet and exceed customer expectations, last longer and can be recycled at the end of life.”

Offering the best natural materials to the aerospace industry has always been fundamental to F/LIST. “We are going back to basics.

More information from


Mélanie Prince, Head of Innovation at F/LIST

The company’s headquarters in Thomasburg, Austria. Sustainability sits at the core of all F.LIST production

AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


Editor Welcome JULY22.qxp_JMesingerNov06 22/06/2022 14:23 Page 1

Editor’s NOTE

Matt Harris

Matt Harris is commissioning editor for AvBuyer. He is an experienced General and Business Aviation journalist and has edited a variety of titles across the last two decades. These include AvBuyer, BizJet Advisor and GA Buyer Europe. matthew-harris-avbuyer/

Don’t Compromise on Maintenance! veryone’s been talking about the pre-owned market lately. Whether it’s the speed at which desirable business jets and turboprops sell, the increases in average asking prices, or the sudden resurgence of interest in various older models (given the lack of newer inventory on the market), we are without doubt navigating some abnormal times. Some of today’s market situation was created by charter and fractional ownership fleet operators needing to bolster their fleets to cater for a surge in demand emanating from the Covid pandemic when many traditional airline passengers turned to private aviation as a safer travel solution. And having liked what they saw, many of those first-time business aircraft users became first-time business aircraft owners, further draining the inventory pool. With the market balance now firmly tipped in favor of sellers, some are even insisting their desperate buyers forego a pre-purchase inspection, accepting their aircraft in an ‘as-is’ condition. A very real danger exists that inexperience, desperation, or a giddy combination of both could lead at least some to experience ‘buyer’s regret’ when the realities of ownership set in, and the aircraft’s full MRO needs become apparent.


Eyes Wide Open

Today’s market environment accentuates how vital it is to buy a jet with an understanding and a plan. The understanding includes knowing exactly what the maintenance condition of the aircraft is – whether it’s engines, airframe, APUs, and/or avionics are covered by an hourly maintenance plan and, if so, what is and isn’t covered when a maintenance need arises. Buyers should also be going into a purchase with their eyes wide open, and with a firm grasp of what they need the aircraft to do (both from a crew and passenger perspective). Given that today’s picked-over market is laced with older pedigree aircraft, if an aircraft’s systems are near to obsolescence, or don’t provide the necessary capability, prospective buyers should know what it will cost to upgrade them. And where differences exists between a buyer’s ideal for the aircraft and its existing capabilities and equipage, buyers need to be able to operate with any compromise for as long as it takes to find a suitable slot at their preferred MRO provider to upgrade. Supply chain issues and high demand on MRO facilities continue to put a strain on schedules. 4 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

All these factors and more are why various articles in this MRO special edition center on the need for you to plan and understand your MRO requirements.

In this MRO Special Edition

For example, it’s important to keep on budget with your business jet upgrade, and three leading industry experts offer tips for how to do so, while sharing some of the common ‘budget-busters’ to avoid. Chris Kjelgaard delves into gaining a fuller understanding of the costs and processes of an engine overhaul, reducing the chance of an expensive shock, while Dave Higdon discusses some strategies for avoiding unnecessary overhaul disruption – whether planning ahead to book the desired MRO slot or thinking about your ongoing flying needs with alternative lift or loaner engines. Hourly maintenance programs offer assurance and predictability to owners and operators – but it’s important to make sure you understand the levels of coverage. Gerrard Cowan asks some of the program providers how owners can achieve flexibility in their programs without becoming exposed to expensive maintenance risks. We also consider some of the upgrade elements of private jet ownership. For example, if you’re purchased an older pre-owned jet, or the cabin of your existing aircraft is feeling a little dated, what are some of the top cabin electronics upgrades you can make to bring new jet capability to your passengers? Brian Wilson discusses. Or, if you’re looking at the flight deck with a view to upgrading, how do you balance the cost versus value of any potential retrofit? Ken Elliott highlights the ways true value can be defined in the cockpit. And Chris Kjelgaard identifies the seven factors that could drive your next cabin refurbishment project, discussing them with some of the industry’s seasoned refurbishment professionals. One of several things the Business Aviation industry does extremely well is to provide ever-greater levels of service to owners and operators, as is borne out by Pratt & Whitney’s recent service offering enhancements, featured in this special edition, and highlighted by Rolls-Royce in their interview with AvBuyer, again published here. So, whether you’re new to aircraft ownership, or you’re a seasoned business aircraft owner/operator, the AvBuyer team trusts you’ll find this MRO Special Industry Guide useful, packed full of actionable intelligence for making the most of your aircraft’s next MRO shop visit. Enjoy! Matt Harris. Commissioning Editor, AvBuyer

MRO-4ways_205x270_AVB_uk.indd 1

16/06/2022 18:17

F CONTENTS JULY22.qxp 22/06/2022 13:38 Page 1


MRO Special Industry Guide 4

Editor’s Note: Don't Compromise on Maintenance!


Keep on Budget with Your Business Jet Upgrade


Pratt & Whitney Enhances Service Offerings


Engine Overhaul: Understanding the Costs & Processes


Engine Overhaul: Tips to Avoid Unnecessary Disruption


Hourly Maintenance Programs: Getting Value for Money


Rolls-Royce: Striving for Engine Support Perfection


Cabin Electronics: New Jet Functionality for Older Planes


Measuring ‘Cost’ versus ‘Value’ of a Flight Panel Retrofit

52 Don’t forget to

Seven Factors Driving Your Next Cabin Refurburbishment

read our regular content in the front section of this issue.

Sponsored Content

2 F/LIST 27 GE OnPoint 37 Sponsored Announcements from TAE and C&L

6 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

EDITORIAL Commissioning Editor Matthew Harris +44 (0) 20 8939 7722 Editorial Contributor (USA Office) Dave Higdon ADVERTISING Steve Champness Publisher Americas +1 770 769 5872 Lise Margin Account Manager +1 703 818 1024 Maria Brabec Account Manager EMEA & APAC Aircraft & Services Sales +420 604 224 828 STUDIO/PRODUCTION Helen Cavalli Mark Williams +44 (0) 20 8939 7726 CIRCULATION Sue Brennan +44 (0) 20 8255 4000 Freephone from USA: +1 855 425 7638 AVBUYER.COM Michas Rapf Emma Davey MANAGING DIRECTOR John Brennan +44 (0) 20 8255 4229 USA OFFICE 1210 West 11th Street, Wichita, KS 67203-3517 EUROPEAN OFFICE AvBuyer House, 34A High Street, Thames Ditton, Surrey KT7 0RY, UK +44 (0)20 8255 4000 Freephone from USA: +1 855 425 7638 PRINTED BY Fry Communications, Inc. 800 West Church Road, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055

Pratt & Witney March.qxp_Layout 1 23/06/2022 07:44 Page 1




1 MRO UPGRADES.qxp_Finance 22/06/2022 09:50 Page 1


Keep on Budget with Your Business Jet Upgrade When planning to upgrade your business jet, is there ever a legitimate reason to exceed the budget? What are the pitfalls to avoid blowing an upgrade budget? Matt Harris asks for the insights of some leading industry insiders…


s anybody who has previously upgraded a business jet would testify, the numerous options available for getting the look, feel and functionality of the aircraft exactly as you’d want it are dizzying. With choice comes a lot of opportunity for original upgrade budgets to grow – sometimes exponentially beyond what was projected. Aircraft owners planning upgrades need to keep a strong

8 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

focus, take a disciplined approach to the overall upgrade project, and should be prepared to build a cushion into their budget to allow for an element of expansion on the original project. By working well ahead of the upgrade with a trusted MRO center, owners and operators will be able to discuss the popular and most effective solutions available for their cabins and cockpits that enhance not only their current mission needs, but future needs too.

The Benefit of Expert Input

“It’s less about going over budget, and more about the owner getting exactly what they need or want in the end,” argues Phil Stearns, Director of Sales & Marketing for Stevens Aerospace & Defense Systems, who adds that the initial budget for an upgrade is “just the starting conversation” and should include plenty of room for change before the project begins. In fact, owners have more chance of seeing their budget

1 MRO UPGRADES.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 12:26 Page 2

ensure that the upgrade is approved by the aircraft manufacturer, as well as the local aviation authority. “National airworthiness authorities require systems to be approved by the manufacturer and will require their consent in the form of an STC (Supplemental Type Certificate),” says Vince Goncalves, Regional VP Africa, ExecuJet MRO Services. “STCs have been carefully designed by the STC holder in conjunction with the aircraft manufacturer, and they require the appropriate expertise for integration into the aircraft’s systems.” Over the years, Ebach has seen many customers choose to perform an upgrade simply because they’ve seen it on another jet. “It is always better for the aircraft owner when their modifications and upgrade decisions are tailored to their own needs and aircraft,” he says, not just copied from another aircraft. Stearns notes that while owners may have an initial budget in mind, once they explore their needs with the MRO shop, based on how they use the aircraft, additional or alternative upgrade items can make sense, justifying an increase on what was originally budgeted. “It could be that a Large Jet

cabin configuration isn’t working as well as it could for the owner on transatlantic flights,” he highlights. “A slight reconfiguration – such as adding a bed, couch, or a redesign of the galley – could fix that. “Or perhaps, with the growing number of cell phones and laptops being used by passengers today, the addition of USB and other charging ports make perfect sense.” Ultimately, budget should be weighed against enhanced productivity or comfort. Not everything is driven by functionality, though. Sometimes personal preference can be important in planning an appropriate upgrade budget. For example, corporate owners may place high importance on corporate identity, conveyed through color scheme or logos, both inside and outside of the aircraft. And private owners might want to reflect some of their favorite things in the cabin, like the seat design of their sports car, or a design element from a vacation home, Stearns suggests. At that point, costs will inevitably increase. “If the owner can put a value on the ‘wow-factor’, they can usually justify increasing their budget,” he argues. As already mentioned, though, there’s a far


swell significantly when they decide to perform an upgrade at the last minute, notes André Ebach, Head of Maintenance for Aero-Dienst. “Getting in contact and working with the maintenance facility at an early stage in the process is very important for proper planning, and for building a reliable budget for the upgrade,” he says. Another benefit of involving the MRO shop in the process early is that it will help owners


AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


1 MRO UPGRADES.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 12:27 Page 3


higher chance of hitting the ‘wowfactor’ with proper planning, far in advance of any proposed upgrade project’s start date.

Budget Upgrade? Avoid These Temptations…

While there are some legitimate reasons for aircraft upgrade budgets to increase, there are some common temptations aircraft owners experience that will result in unnecessary additional expense if they’re not carefully avoided. First, avoid selecting an MRO center for the upgrade based on the cheapest quote. Ebach suggests selecting a provider you trust, ultimately. Goncalves agrees. “Aircraft owners and operators shouldn’t be tempted or influenced by the ‘best price’, which could lead to a mismatch between the end-result and your expectations. “If there’s a large difference between proposals from MRO providers, then there’s usually a very good reason for this, and it needs to be queried first,” he suggests. “Next, avoid buying upgrade items based on brand or clever features,” Ebach warns, adding that it can be tempting to pay for a specific upgrade item “simply because it’s state-of-the-art”. Such an approach could lead to owners over-paying for functionality they


10 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE


don’t ultimately need or incurring unanticipated additional work to integrate it with the airplane’s existing systems. Nor should upgrade options be overlooked because they are a different brand to what the owner has been used to in the past, he adds. Ultimately, customers should be guided through the whole project by their trusted MRO center to identify the best upgrade for their needs. “With such a large number of options available on the retrofit market, it is easy to get lost,” Ebach warns. “But an experienced MRO shop will be able to walk its customers

through the project, and filter through the vast array of choices to find the right ones.”

Hidden Additional Costs

Clarity is also essential to managing budgets, and there are areas of an aircraft upgrade that owners should be very clear about – but often aren’t – such as the hidden extras of an upgrade or modification. “Don’t be led by the bottomline price,” Goncalves says. “Work through the upgrade proposals line by line when making comparisons between what each shop is offering. When there is a discrepancy, ask why, and don’t accept vague answers.” Does the price include the cost of equipment, but exclude installation costs? “Someone has to perform the work, including the removal of the existing system and installation of the new equipment,” Ebach adds. “Then there’s the cost of engineering, hangar space, costs of compliance with the relevant aviation regulations (e.g., burn testing). Are these included?” “When receiving a proposal make sure that any item quoted ‘Price to be Determined’ gets discussed early on,” Goncalves says. Stearns notes that the price for


EXPERIENCE. UNLIKE ANY OTHER. We are an authorized sales and factory service center for all the industry’s topline avionics/instrument brands including Avidyne, BendixKing, Chelton/Wulfsberg, Collins Aerospace, Garmin, Honeywell, JET/L3, and Universal Avionics.

World AvBuyer Ad 6_15_22.indd 2

6/15/2022 10:13:50 AM

1 MRO UPGRADES.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 12:29 Page 4



paint stripes and colors have risen dramatically lately. “Custom paints, metallics, and extravagant designs are generally not in the base price” when owners are looking for a baseline budget for an upgrade. “Be very clear with the paint shop and designer what you want upfront so that all costs of a paint refurbishment are budgeted for.” And then there are the factors that the aircraft owner/operator is responsible for in their budget. “For example, in the case of charter operators there’s the lost income from charter flights owing to an extended period of downtime,” Ebach illustrates. “This is a hidden cost that can easily be overlooked.” Depending on the type of upgrade or modification, significant work could be required to gain access to the necessary area, including removal of the interior. “In addition to the extensive man-hours incurred, this can sometimes result in unexpected discoveries, such as corrosion,” Ebach notes. “Is there a contingency in the budget for such unforeseen surprises?” Other hidden costs can occur later because of penny-pinching in the near term. “From a strictly aircraft-protection standpoint, it’s important to understand that the 12 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

paint’s primary responsibility is to protect the aircraft,” Stearns illustrates. “The secondary function is to look good.” If the paint on an aircraft is peeling or cracked, the surface below will be at risk of corrosion, which can be an expensive fix further down the line. “It’s necessary for aircraft owners to budget for regular, inexpensive, visual inspections and repairs of such areas sooner, rather than later,” Stearns emphasizes. The upgrade could be a good opportunity to do so.

Tips for a Budget-Oriented Upgrade

Keeping the budget in hand when it comes to upgrading your business jet ultimately requires planning, planning, and more planning, according to Ebach. “We’ve seen many upgrade projects move through our

hangars over the decades, and, without exception, the most successful are the customers who get in contact with us early,” he emphasizes. Successful upgrades start with seeking the MRO center’s expertise and input into the project, proceeding with renderings, technical descriptions, engineering, removal of old equipment, installation of new, and, of course, aftermarket support, “with as few ‘budget shocks’ as possible along the way,” he concludes. “Authorized service centers are more likely to already have OEM approvals/STCs for the systems you’re upgrading, saving time and cost,” Goncalves adds. “Be sure to request the contact details of the STC holder or system OEM to discuss your upgrade with them, too. “OEMs place their reputation in the hands of your local service providers’ abilities and will guide you as best as they can,” to ensure your upgrade budget is well spent. “Moreover, service providers who have OEM approvals undergo regular audits, and tend to have the necessary infrastructure, experience and equipment to complete your upgrade successfully.” ■ More information from: Aero-Dienst: ExecuJet: Stevens Aerospace:

MATT HARRIS is commissioning editor for AvBuyer. He is an experienced General and Business Aviation journalist and has edited a variety of titles across the last two decades. These include AvBuyer, BizJet Advisor and GA Buyer Europe.


Elliott Aviation July.qxp_Layout 1 22/06/2022 12:41 Page 1

Providing Full Service Aviation Solutions For Over 85 Years.



Maintenance & Accessories


Now with locations at MLI, DSM, FCM, and PDK! Elliott Aviation is the one-stop shop for all your aircraft needs.

At Elliott Aviation, we’re big enough to handle all of your aircraft needs but small enough to give you the personal touch you deserve. Providing aircraft sales and acquisitions (Elliott Jets), avionics, maintenance, parts, paint and interiors, accessories, and FBO services. From Hawkers, Citations, Beechjets, and King Airs to Challengers, Phenoms, and more, Elliott Aviation offers expert solutions to meet your every need. A known and trusted name for providing the industry’s highest quality business aviation solutions, Elliott Aviation technicians are experts in light to mid-sized jets and turboprops with factory authorizations from manufacturers such as Textron, Embraer, and more. With state-of-the-art facilities and equipment, proven processes, and highly trained and experienced technicians, we deliver world-class quality and service customized to you and your aircraft. With four U.S.-based facilities, you can easily access the services needed for your aircraft. Regardless of which facility you frequent, our team is dedicated to creating a consistent, satisfying customer experience every time you visit.


2 MRO P&W.qxp_Finance 22/06/2022 11:09 Page 1


Pratt & Whitney Enhances Service Offerings Among the companies making the headlines at the recent EBACE was Pratt & Whitney Canada with a trio of announcements highlighting enhancements to its products and services for customers in Business and General Aviation…


ever one to miss an opportunity to grow the support services it offers to operators, Pratt & Whitney Canada has expanded the portfolio of its P&WCSMART maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) solutions.

P&WC Extends P&WCSMART into Turbofan Market Since Pratt & Whitney launched the P&WCSMART portfolio in 2014 it has grown to more than 30 different offerings for PT6A and P&WCpowered helicopters and regional aircraft. But this latest program expansion takes the service into the business jet market for the first time, 14 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

for Cessna Citation Mustang owners and operators. Specifically, the new P&WCSMART solution is a flat-rate ‘zero time since overhaul’ (0-TSO) engine exchange for PW615F-A engines. This is part of the company’s effort to provide flexible, cost-effective solutions for major engine maintenance, which support the full engine lifecycle, with flat-rate overhaul options, overhaul alternatives, and more, according to one company spokesperson. The new P&WCSMART offering enables Citation Mustang customers to exchange their existing PW615F-A engine with a freshly overhauled PW615F-A engine for a “very attractive price”, Pratt & Whitney says. With this option, customers avoid having to rent an engine and the corresponding removal and installation, reducing downtime to just a few days – the time necessary to install the 0-TSO exchange engine(s). “P&WCSMART solutions provide competitive flat rates and capped costs for major engine maintenance, eliminating price variables and uncertainty,” Irene Makris, Vice President, Customer Service, Pratt & Whitney Canada, commented.

Video Series to Support PT6E67XP Operators

Furthermore, having announced the expansion of its PT6 E-Series engine family in April, Pratt & Whitney Canada has launched a new video series about the PT6E-67XP to “help customers fully benefit from the PT6E67XP engine experience - including digital connectivity, built-in intelligence and powerful diagnostic/prognostic capabilities”. The PT6E-67XP engine powers the Pilatus PC-12 NGX (which entered service in 2020), and the Video Series comprises three parts, showcasing different aspects of the PT6E-67XP engine user experience. “This video series will help customers new to the PT6E-67XP engine to take full advantage of its state-of-the-art technology,” says Nicholas Kanellias, Vice President, General Aviation, Pratt & Whitney Canada. Part 1 - Simplifying the Flying Experience with Intuitive Controls: The PT6E-67XP features a dualchannel integrated electronic propeller and engine control system — the first of its kind in the General Aviation turboprop market.

2 MRO P&W.qxp_Finance 22/06/2022 11:10 Page 2

The result is a more intuitive way of flying that reduces pilot workload. The first video in the series demonstrates how the digitally enabled single lever simplifies engine operation and allows for true precision-controlled auto-throttle. Part 2 - Supporting Troubleshooting with World-Class Service: The PT6E67XP is digitally connected through its Data Collection and Transmission Unit (DCTU), which wirelessly transmits full-flight engine data shortly after landing and shutdown. The data is reviewed and analysed by dedicated experts of Pratt & Whitney Canada’s Proactive Services team, who will then contact the Director of Maintenance directly to provide updates, and, if needed, recommend preventive actions, such as proactively swapping-out parts. The second part in the series provides an overview of troubleshooting support. Part 3 - Facilitating Maintenance with Digital Connectivity: Part three looks at digital connectivity. Available for download on the Apple iOS App Store, the DCTU app was developed to communicate with DCTU hardware

“Pratt & Whitney Canada has now further extended its Carbon Offset Service into General Aviation.” on PT6 E-Series engines using wireless connectivity, for the purpose of performing maintenance actions. Primarily used by technicians, the DCTU app makes it easy to view a host of parameters, events, exceedances and faults, retrieve diagnostics data, monitor the engine’s health status, perform live diagnostics, and test transmissions or change engine modules using barcode scanning, among other actions. Part three of the series demonstrates how.

Carbon Offset Service Rolled-out to GA Customers And finally, having rolled-out its Carbon Offset Service initially to Eagle Service Plan (ESP)-enrolled

business jet customers, before expanding it to helicopter and regional operators, Pratt & Whitney Canada has now further extended the service into General Aviation. European fractional owner JetFly has signed up its entire fleet of PT6A and PT6 E-Series powered Pilatus aircraft that are enrolled in the ESP maintenance program to the Carbon Offset Service, which enables operators to contribute to greater environmental sustainability by offsetting the carbon footprint of their aircraft in a simple, costeffective manner. P&WC’s Carbon Offset Service enables operators to contribute to greater environmental sustainability. The operator’s aircraft’s emissions are estimated, and compensated, through the sourcing of carbon offset credits from South Pole (a globally recognized provider of environmentally sustainable solutions), and the Carbon Offset Service supports initiatives that benefit the environment and local communities by creating economic opportunities, such as clean water access, renewable energy, and forest conservation projects. “JetFly’s decision to register these engines in our Carbon Offset Service underscores the importance of expanding to our General Aviation customer base, the largest market segment for the company,” Irene Makris, vice president, Customer Service, Pratt & Whitney Canada highlights. “Environmental responsibility is important for JetFly and for our customers,” adds Cédric Lescop, Chief Executive Officer, JetFly. “It also fits within our sustainability goals, and this is one of the reasons why we also fly PT6A and PT6 ESeries powered aircraft – they are reliable and fuel-efficient engines.” “Pratt & Whitney has a longstanding commitment to offering environmentally responsible products and solutions to its customers,” Makris concludes. ■ More information from For the PT6E-67XP Video Series, visit: -showcase-pt6e-67xp-features AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


3 MRO ENGINES 1.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 12:38 Page 1


Engine Overhaul: Understanding the Costs & Processes Any mistaken assumptions by an aircraft owner about an overhaul can add even more cost to an alreadyexpensive process. But what homework should owners do before the overhaul begins? Chris Kjelgaard finds out…


t is all too easy for a Business Aircraft owner to not fully comprehend the extent of the repair and replacement work that might be required during a scheduled engine overhaul. It’s even easier to underestimate how much work might be required when an engine must undergo a shop visit for unscheduled maintenance after a fault is detected, or a part fails. Misunderstandings on the part of aircraft owners can easily happen when too much is taken for granted regarding their engine maintenance plan coverage, or an over-reliance on maintenance tracking software for 16 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

information on engine status exists. Preparatory homework is required, allowing the owner to review their assumptions before the engine enters the shop for maintenance, scheduled or otherwise. “We find operators are typically unfamiliar with many factors surrounding major maintenance events like overhauls,” says Joe Capra, Senior Commercial Director, Pratt & Whitney Turbofans for StandardAero Business Aviation. But if the owner realizes that, as with most things ‘information is power’…it is easy for the owner to prevent themselves being surprised. “Those who take the time to visit the

facility where their engines will undergo the maintenance benefit from meeting the technical team, learning the process, reviewing choices regarding parts, cost and supplemental support, and understanding anticipated turnaround-times for their event,” he adds. “Our OEM-authorized engine service centers have technical experts with experience from overhauling or repairing hundreds of engines and will provide all the tips and suggestions to navigate the process,” Capra assures. “This includes establishing a budget, or in the example of pre-paid maintenance plans, a review of what is and isn’t covered.”

3 MRO ENGINES 1.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 12:39 Page 2


Engine Maintenance Plan Familiarization

To prevent expensive misunderstandings, it’s particularly important for owners to know exactly what they are buying when either they contract for new engine maintenance plans for their aircraft or buy an aircraft with engine maintenance coverage already in place, according to Sean Lynch, Program Coordinator for Engine Assurance Program (EAP). “Before you buy the aircraft [with an engine maintenance program supposedly already attached], you need to make sure the program is fully transferable and paid-up, or you’ll end

up in a fight with the seller over the bill or lose the engine coverage,” Lynch warns. As Capra indicates, it is vital for aircraft owners in possession of prepaid engine maintenance plans to know exactly what their plans cover. For instance, several engine OEMs — and at least one well-known independent pre-paid plan provider — offer different levels of maintenance coverage, each being priced to suit different owners’ budgets. The different levels offered by any given provider don’t all offer the same coverage. For example, cheaper monthly plans often don’t provide engine rentals

when the engines covered under the plan are in the shop for maintenance. Nor do they cover the costs of shipping those engines to and from the maintenance shop. And they’re less likely to provide engine condition trend monitoring or cover the replacement of Life Limited Parts (LLPs), or routine line maintenance. Indeed, some plans only cover engine maintenance following a catastrophic part failure. On the other hand, comprehensive programs — offered optionally by some engine OEMs and as the only choice by others — cover just about every cost incurred when an engine enters the shop for scheduled or unscheduled maintenance, including short-term engine rentals, transport costs, and even (in some cases) charters of an alternative aircraft. Those few maintenance-related cost items not covered by some of the comprehensive plans are either left out to provide a little wiggle room for plan cost savings at the owner’s option — the providers offering even more comprehensive coverage to owners willing to pay the full amounts — or are excluded because they can only arise owing to negligence on the aircraft owner’s part.

Over-reliance on Maintenance Tracking Software

For engines not covered by pre-paid maintenance programs, another misunderstanding that can mislead owners on each engine’s part life and condition is for them to place too much faith in the information provided by the maintenance tracking software program used for the engine. “If the engine is not on a program, you need to familiarize yourself with the [aircraft’s maintenance] logbooks, because with engine maintenance tracking programs the data is only as good as what has been inputted,” notes Lynch. “You need to verify [from the detailed information on completed maintenance tasks] in the logbooks that the engine status matches up with what the tracking program says.” Capra agrees. “We think maintenance tracking software AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


3 MRO ENGINES 1.qxp_Finance 22/06/2022 09:54 Page 3


Know your Life-Limited Parts

From a maintenance-cost viewpoint, it is critical for aircraft owners to know how much life any given Life-Limited Part (LLP) has, both before and after full overhaul or major mid-term inspection, according to Lynch. LLPs (such as fuel control units, turbine disks and even individual turbine blades) are enormously expensive to replace. The cost of having to do so can be ruinous for an owner who has relied entirely on what the maintenance tracking software says regarding engine life, but suddenly finds during a major scheduled inspection conferring, say, another 1,000 hours of engine time until the next full overhaul, that the engine contains LLPs which only have 100 hours of running life remaining. This happened in one specific example Lynch encountered, of a Gulfstream G100 whose engines were covered under a plan which neither included the cost of LLP replacement nor the cost of renting replacement engines while the recently inspected engines were inducted again for LLP replacement. Another even more extreme example Lynch cites from his personal experience is that of a critical part failing in an engine which had emerged 18 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE


programs and databases are excellent for tracking when maintenance is required,” he says. “We do, however, strongly believe that looking through the logbooks and understanding what the total run time has been on noncycle or hour-life items helps to understand whether these items will have a higher susceptibility for replacement during the next maintenance event. “An example might be the total time since installation of a set of turbine blades,” Capra highlights. “Were they installed new or used at the last major shop event? Or were they original to new manufacture and reinstalled at the last hot section inspection?” The logbook information is critical to understanding the history of what was accomplished on the engine, he explains, and it shouldn’t be taken for granted that maintenance time-tracking software alone provides these insights. from a mid-point inspection (MPI) only a few months earlier. Unknown to the owner, the engine contained a part which had been installed eight years earlier during a compressor zone inspection and was years out of warranty. The failure of that part when the engine was still fresh out of its MPI led to the engine having to be removed from the aircraft and inducted for unscheduled maintenance, at a total cost of $240k. Luckily for the owner, the engine was fully covered under an EAP comprehensive program. In some cases (not those cited above) the additional engine maintenance costs resulting from a misunderstanding over remaining part life can be so high that they exceed the actual market value of the aircraft in good condition. This effectively renders the aircraft immediately obsolete, fit only to be scrapped except possibly for a little price recovery available from some non-limited engine parts which may be resaleable. That said, Capra reckons most owners are aware of how expensive misunderstandings regarding remaining LLP life can be and pay particular attention to knowing just what the LLP

‘green time’ situation is in their engines. “In major maintenance events, where access to life limited parts is performed, we make owners and buyers aware of any short hour/cycle situations and offer the decision to replace these items with new or used parts with sufficient time remaining to suit their operational requirements.” Another bit of good news for owners is that “manufacturers’ warranty terms, and conditions and elements of maintenance plan cost coverage, are well understood by OEM-approved engine MRO facilities,” according to Capra. “These programs can change from time to time, so involving the prepaid maintenance plan provider and the MRO is very beneficial to understanding plan coverage.”

Involve Experts When Purchasing an Aircraft

Lynch recommends that, when aircraft engines are not covered by pre-paid maintenance plans and decisions need to be made regarding purchasing those aircraft or sending their engines for maintenance, owners avail themselves of the expertise of an experienced technical inspector or A&P mechanic who is highly familiar with the engine

TAE Aerospace February.qxp_Layout 1 23/06/2022 10:17 Page 1

Engage the power of TAE Aerospace For over 30 years, TAE Aerospace has been supporting TPE331 engine operators worldwide with first-class maintenance, repair and overhaul services. Commercial and military operators have come to rely on TAE Aerospace to maximise the performance of their TPE331 engines and minimise the impact on aircraft availability during routine and unplanned maintenance events. With Honeywell Authorized Service Centres across the globe, we are one of the world’s largest TPE331 engine service providers covering engines, LRU components, fuel controls and engine component repairs. With multiple Airworthiness Approvals from around the world, OEM correlated dynamometer test cells and prop stands for pre- and post-maintenance testing, vibration analysis and performance runs, we make sure you get the best from your TPE331. We deliver customer value by offering a high-quality service at a price that will reduce your maintenance cost. Contact one of our experienced team today. North America John M +1 (602) 881 1600 Mario

M +1 (706) 993 0898


P +1 (208) 229 8340


M +1 (480) 376 4550

South America George M +1 (954) 673 6492 Europe and Africa Tomas P +420 725 908 515

Benefits of using an Authorized Honeywell Service Centre • Access to 100% guaranteed OEM certified parts • Reduced downtime due to parts availability and guaranteed stock levels • Access to OEM support and warranties • TAE Aerospace technicians have access to the latest Honeywell technical documentation and training • Unparalleled global experience • Cost efficiencies through access to approved dealer discounts

3 MRO ENGINES 1.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 12:40 Page 4


type involved. StandardAero reckons that owners will get the same level of expert advice from high-quality engine maintenance providers when the owners contract them for the engine work required. “It really depends on how comfortable the owner or buyer is with making those decisions,” suggests Capra. “We recommend they find a qualified service provider that can answer their questions and is an organization they can trust. “Reputable, OEM-authorized shops are designated by the OEMs and are FAA-approved to do this, meaning that the owner/buyer’s aircraft will not only meet our high regulatory standards, but also the OEM requirements for service.” Today’s overheated used aircraft market is contributing to owner misunderstandings regarding engine maintenance costs — even more so given that supply-chain issues are affecting the prompt availability of parts, and the resulting cost of obtaining them quickly. “The market is dynamic, and parts have become 20-30 percent more expensive in the last six months,” says Lynch, noting that the issue is affecting 20 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

the prices of a variety of parts produced by different engine manufacturers for different engine types.

How ‘Sunshine Parts’ & Improper Storage Impact Maintenance Costs Replacement of LLPs during unscheduled maintenance is a particularly onerous burden for aircraft owners. A single turbine blade can costs as much as $3,500, and when there are 72 of them on a single highpressure turbine blade stage, the cost of replacing that stage and its turbine disk can run to $300k or more, Lynch highlights. This type of eventuality raises another issue for aircraft owners — that of ‘sunshine parts’, LLPs and other parts which Lynch says may well be functioning completely normally and within operational parameters in an engine, but which airworthiness authorities require to be inspected for wear and tear every time the engine is opened up for unscheduled maintenance. Should the mechanics working on the engine find any wear at all in any sunshine parts, airworthiness regulations require that they be replaced immediately with unworn

parts — even if the replaced parts are still working and “are not the driving cause of the unscheduled maintenance event”, notes Capra. This can have a major effect on engine maintenance costs and overhaul decisions. “They can be difficult to predict,” Capra says. Wear in sunshine parts is “largely dependent on total time since the last major maintenance event, the total run time, and operating environment. All are factors that can create engine wear”. Improper preservation of the engines on stored aircraft is an important issue which can create huge cost and maintenance headaches for unwary, or naïve, aircraft buyers, adds Lynch. The engines of stored aircraft are supposed to be run once a month, so the engines remain within the technical and regulatory condition requirements imposed by the maintenance manual. Engines not run for 60 days are subject to additional engine maintenance protocols. A key requirement for anyone storing an aircraft over longer periods is to remove all oil from its engines. This is to ensure that any water entering the engine, for whatever reason, cannot bead up on the engine’s main bearing, Lynch explains. Should all oil not be removed from the stored engine and water beading occurs, this can cause corrosion in the main bearing. Thus, any engine in long-term storage which contains oil must undergo a maintenance bearing inspection before the engine can be operated. Effectively this means the engine must be disassembled and undergo a full overhaul, he says. If you’re buying a stored aircraft, “your best protection is to be on a fully covered engine program,” says Lynch. “Or else you should fully understand what program you’re on and deduct the value of what it doesn’t cover from the purchase price” for the aircraft. “If it’s not on an engine program, when you’re buying the aircraft you need a really expert mechanic who knows the engine and an expert technical inspector.” Thus, any engines that are no longer being run on a monthly basis, and have

3 MRO ENGINES 1.qxp_Finance 22/06/2022 09:56 Page 5

More than 20,000 aircraft parts in stock. If you’re having difficulty finding a specific Astra, Citation, Falcon, Hawker or Phenom part, chances are we have it! Check out our huge inventory to fulfill your parts needs and reduce your aircraft's operating costs. All of our parts are available for immediate sale, exchange or to rent. Engines • Engine Inlets • Actuators • Thrust Reversers • Windscreens • Wheels and Brakes •

Pumps • Valves • Landing Gear • Servos • Flight Controls • Avionics •

Cowlings Cabin Interior Parts • Air Cycle Machines • Antennas • Engine QEC Parts • Leading Edge Devices • •

Visit to see the inventory of parts available or call (214) 350-0107.

Always Doing Our Part

not adhered to a long-term preservation requirement, must undergo a comprehensive bearing inspection before the engine can be operated. Effectively, this means the engine must undergo a full disassembly — which could turn into an overhaul, he says. If you’re buying a stored aircraft, “your best protection is to be on a fully covered engine program,” says Lynch. “Or else you should fully understand what program you’re on and deduct the value of what it doesn’t cover from the purchase price” for the aircraft. “If it’s not on an engine program, when you’re buying the aircraft, you need an expert mechanic who knows the engine, and an expert technical inspector.”

In Summary…

The best way for aircraft owners and buyers to avoid making mistakes regarding the scheduling, downtime and costs of engine overhauls is to “start planning major maintenance early”, Capra summarizes. “Three to six months in advance of required maintenance is recommended. Engine leasing, parts

availability, and lead times should be considered. “Also, seek direct consultation from engine repair and overhaul providers to help establish a budget,” he concludes. “The sooner operators speak with a technical expert, the more informed they will be regarding their options in handling their maintenance events.” ■

“...some plans only cover engine maintenance following a

More information from Engine Assurance Program: StandardAero:

catastrophic part failure.”

CHRIS KJELGAARD has been an aviation journalist for 40 years, and has covered a vast array of industry areas during that time. He has served as editor of ten print and online titles and written extensively on many aspects of aviation.



4 MRO ENGINES 2.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 12:48 Page 1


Engine Overhaul Tips: Avoid Unnecessary Disruption Big on cost and complexity, the engine overhaul can seem an overwhelming event, ideally kept on the periphery as a ‘future event’. Dave Higdon shares tips, highlighting how confronting, and planning, the overhaul long in advance will remove uncertainty and disruption to your flight ops. 22 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE


usiness jet owners and operators have a multitude of factors that come into play when the time approaches for them to choose the best MRO center to overhaul their airplane. From the basics of how experienced the shop is in working with your airplane’s powerplant, to whether they’re an approved maintenance center for the engine manufacturer, to what other customers say who have had overhauls done by the same shop – there’s lots to take on board. Further matters of price, guarantees, location, availability of slots at the time they’re required, and the type of overhaul that’s required will

also come into play as owners/operators consider the right shop for the job. And the decisions don’t stop with the selection of the overhaul center. Owners and operators need to work out how an intensive, lengthy period of downtime will be navigated with the least disruption to their operations. The good news is, with proper management of your jet, you will see the overhaul coming years ahead of time, assuming you purchased your aircraft with plenty of time remaining on the engines. But regardless of the engine’s Time Before Overhaul, it's never too early to start planning for the moment the aircraft needs some TLC.

BUYING A BUSINESS JET? Now is a great time to enroll on an EAP hourly engine maintenance program and save.

If you’re buying an aircraft, enrolling your engines and APUs on Engine Assurance Program allows you to operate it more economically. EAP offers comprehensive engine coverage with savings of as much as $80-$100 per engine per hour while using the same high-quality parts, engine MRO shops and field service technicians as the other programs. An EAP engine maintenance program keeps you in the air, not on the ground.

Visit to see the complete list of engines we cover and to get a quote, or call 214.350.0877.

Customer focused. High-quality. Trusted resources. Less expensive.

EAP_AvBuyer_ads_2022.indd 18

6/9/22 3:12 PM

4 MRO ENGINES 2.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 12:48 Page 2


Where to Begin

The first item on your planning list should be to research and select a vendor who’s able to perform the work when the time arrives. That vendor should be capable of coordinating the other elements of the work package, including: • • •

Engine removal and reinstallation Shipping (where required) Test runs and acceptance flights.

Ensuring your overhaul partner is fully capable of coordinating the whole project, you will have peace of mind that you have a partner who knows the plan and can follow its progress closely. Next, timing is everything. It’s logical to schedule major engine maintenance events, whether overhauls or hotsection inspections, for periods of low demand for the aircraft. So, you’ll need to analyze the data available to your flight department to know when those are likely to be. When a major engine event is due, the ideal would be to schedule it at the 24 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

same time as the airplane’s annual inspection. Of course, this approach assumes you can afford to dispense of the company airplane for the duration of the inspection/overhaul.

Avoid Operational Disruption During an Overhaul

If it seems impossible to be without lift for the period the overhaul is projected to take, it would be a wise decision to consider some of the following options, checking with your engine maintenance program provider (where applicable) to see which costs are covered on your engine plan… Supplemental lift is one option,

whether ad hoc charter, or jet cards (if you anticipate needing more than 25 hours of charter time during the downtime). Perhaps a short-term wet lease is viable if intensive usage is anticipated. Alternatively, it could make sense to loan some powerplants while your own are being overhauled. This effectively ensures you continue to fly your own jet while only the powerplants remain at the MRO center for the duration of the overhaul. The only time the airplane would be out of action would be to have the engines uninstalled/loaners installed, and then swapped again at the end of the process. As mentioned, it may be that the cost of supplemental lift of engine loaners are covered by your engine maintenance program (assuming you’re enrolled on one). Therefore, a part of the planning process would be to speak to your program provider to learn exactly what’s covered and what isn’t. Note: The benefits of a professionally managed engine maintenance program can help ease the load on an operator on every level, depending on the details of the program they’re enrolled with. Support can vary from a full, turnkey process that’s completely managed by the program provider, to more limited service covering the overhaul or inspection itself, but not the removal and re-installation of the engines, for example. The message is clear. Use the time leading up to your overhaul wisely. Don’t wait for things to fall into place. Understand every element of the process, and the events and needs surrounding it. That is a sure-fire way to avoid any unnecessary disruption to your operations. ■

DAVE HIGDON is a highly respected aviation journalist who has covered all aspects of civil aviation over the past 40 years. Based in Wichita, he has several thousand flight hours, and has piloted pretty much everything from foot-launched wings to combat jets. Contact him via


Singapore Service Centre Expansion The industry’s largest service facility in Asia Full capabilities | Sustainable at its core

Bombardier and Exceptional by design are trademarks of Bombardier Inc. or its subsidiaries. © 2022 Bombardier Inc. All rights reserved.

DDBA0880A_SingaporeServiceCentreOpening_AvBuyer_205X270mm_V2.indd 1

2022-06-10 14:24

GE_OnPoint July sponsored content.qxp_Empyrean 23/06/2022 07:54 Page 3

Sponsored Content

Operational data returns insights for improved reliability The last few years have seen a step change in aircraft connectivity and the ability to pull massive amounts of real-time inflight engine and aircraft data. As the focus shifts from connectivity to monitoring and predictive maintenance, GE’s OnPoint is positioned to translate that operational data into tangible value in the form of proactive anticipation of problems, minimized downtime, reduced overall lifecycle costs through better planned maintenance schedules, improved fuel burn and ultimately increased residual value of the aircraft. It’s a known fact that engines need servicing over time to ensure their safe performance, but even normal functioning engines can see anomalies that may require corrections to ensure long-term safe operations. In the past, a service bulletin would be issued that might include fleet-wide aircraft downtime to inspect and if required replace hardware – a time and resource consuming resolution.

26 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

With today’s analytics, more scenarios like this can instead be handled with surgical precision. Parameters such as temperatures, pressures and flow rates are carefully tracked throughout the engine and aircraft, and analytics can identify a concerning condition without the need for physical inspection, allowing a majority of the fleet to continue operations uninterrupted without unnecessary maintenance activity. Diagnostics and prognostics such as these allow engines to be on-condition, prolonging the need for engine overhaul and optimizing

maintenance costs. Modern engines have over 80 sensors, and interface with airframe sensors and controls forming a complete diagnostics package. Diagnostics should be recognized as more than simply monitoring for a parameter shift. Rather, it’s an array of parameters monitoring the sensors as a prognostic system in order to predict performance changes over time. Additionally, monitoring and predictive maintenance is further strengthened from a running log and history of the thousands of engine performance characteristics and calculations at any one time. By leveraging monitoring and prognostics in partnership with GE, then owners, directors of maintenance and even financers all can realize the many benefits of data that is specifically monitored, captured, and analyzed. Together, by using these insights, the industry can take a major step forward in overall operational optimization.

GE_OnPoint July sponsored content.qxp_Empyrean 23/06/2022 07:54 Page 4

GE’s OnPoint Service Program

Designed and serviced xs oiit }sy ƌ}mrk

GE’s OnPoint service program provides comprehensive business jet coverage with 24/7 rapid maintenance response, exclusive diagnostics, design expertise and OEM parts. We’re here to keep }sy ƌ}mrk er}xmqi er}{livi

5 MRO MAINTENANCE.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 15:04 Page 1


Hourly Maintenance Programs: Getting Value for Money Do today’s aircraft maintenance programs offer owners and operators flexibility to get optimal value for money without significant exposure to expensive maintenance risks? Gerrard Cowan asks the experts and highlights some of the ‘gotchas’.


ourly maintenance programs offer business jet and turboprop operators a high degree of security, with the knowledge that their engines, avionics, airframe, APUs, and/or parts will receive the maintenance they need. But in a challenging economic climate, how can operators ensure they get the best value for money, while still guaranteeing the coverage they need? According to Francisco Zozaya, Jet Support Services Inc’s (JSSI’s) Chief Revenue Officer, the Hourly Cost Maintenance Programs (HCMPs) offered by JSSI are “a bespoke service for our 28 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

customers”, with different coverage options, depending on their requirements and level of risk tolerance. It includes a “tip-to-tail” program for the entire aircraft, along with engine-only, or partsonly coverage. With concerns on the horizon for operators, notably supply chain shortages which are unlikely to end any time soon, Zozaya believes “in the coming years there will be more demand for HCMPs, since having a maintenance program in place means better access to scarce parts and engines, and additional peace of mind.” JSSI provides coverage for a range of aircraft equipment and

components, from engines, to avionics, to APUs – and the nature of the coverage is strongly affected by the system in question. “It will also depend on an operator’s use of the business jet because scheduled maintenance is determined by either calendar date or usage,” Zozava adds. “An operator with a more intense schedule and higher hourly and cycle usage is going to need inspections sooner. “They may see higher maintenance costs within a smaller time, compared to a low usage user – especially when their maintenance is hourly, and cycledriven.” Moreover, operators of older

5 MRO MAINTENANCE.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 15:05 Page 2

and higher usage aircraft can expect more unscheduled risk, since these aircraft are more susceptible to unscheduled maintenance requirements.

No One-Size-Fits-All

Honeywell provides maintenance programs for a range of systems, including engines, engine nacelles, APUs, and mechanical and avionics components. Nadya Krisko, Senior Director of Business and General Aviation, EMEIAI, highlights that the company’s Maintenance Service Plan (MSP) is designed to provide flexible options and cut back on unplanned maintenance costs and unnecessary downtime. “Pay-as-you-go maintenance

can result in unmanageable costs and insufficient maintenance budgets, especially when multiple unexpected failures happen,” she warns. “This can also lead to an extended aircraft downtime.” With MSP, business jet operators can choose to cover particular systems and components, or opt for broader coverage across the aircraft. There are also different service levels, extended service coverage, and consigned inventory management options, while the MSP Gold Level Service provides a 24/7 Road Crew Service and Extended Troubleshooting. “There is no ‘one size fits all’,” Krisko highlights. “Each operator

has a unique operation, whether short flights, long-range flights, flying into remote destinations, operations in areas with a comprehensive MRO network, Minimum Equipment List items to consider, new versus pre-owned aircraft, flight hours flown annually, and other factors. “These will all be parameters defining individual priorities,” she illustrates, adding that in general, engine and APU coverage appear to be a higher priority over avionics. Similarly, the type of system involved will impact coverage in numerous ways. For example, turbine engines will be subject to such processes as Major Periodic

AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


5 MRO MAINTENANCE.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 15:05 Page 3



Inspections (MPIs), which “can be pricey, and their cost may vary depending on whether there are any issues identified that need to be fixed to keep the engine in working order,” Krisko explains. On top of that, operators need to consider Life Limited Parts (LLP) replacement for APUs and engines once they have reached the end of their lives, which is something that’s less of a concern on mechanical and avionics components, Krisko says. Such concerns are factored into the company’s MSPs.

Balancing Budget with Maintenance Demand

Delray Dobbins, Senior Manager, Eagle Service Plan (ESP) Sales & Global Strategy at Pratt & Whitney Canada says the right hourly engine maintenance programs allow operators to balance budgetary needs with engine maintenance demands. “The benefits of hourly maintenance plans apply to all engines, no matter the type,” he argues. “Even when an engine is highly reliable, with high mission availability, hourly maintenance plans help operators pay less over the life, or length of ownership, of their aircraft. “This comes from cost savings associated with both scheduled and unscheduled maintenance,” he explains. Pratt & Whitney Canada’s ESP was traditionally built on four levels of coverage – Silver, Silver Lite, Gold and Gold Lite – but has since been simplified to two: ESP Gold and Platinum. “The data showed customers didn’t really want more than two coverage levels, and the trend is definitely for customers today to want more of a turn-key solution for their engine needs,” Dobbins observes. (While the Gold and Platinum options are offered to new customers, the company continues to honor those who signed up to the Silver or Silver Lite coverage previously.) 30 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

The company offers a range of other benefits, depending on an operator’s need. For example, operators of engines like the PW300 can combine the ESP hourly plan with digital engine health monitoring services, while, as well as ESP, P&WC offers a Fleet Management Program (FMP) for those operating six or more aircraft.

Shop Scheduling

Steve McManus, Sales Director for GE Aviation, highlights that his company’s OnPoint program provides exceptional levels of availability through dedicated slots for shop visits, along with full risk transfer for an engine’s service and maintenance needs. “OnPoint addresses and eliminates lifecycle cost spikes while offering a great option for long-term operational readiness,” he adds, highlighting that it especially eliminates induction time and turn time for customers. “There are occasional surprises even with on-condition engines, so we’ve also invested in our field and technical support staff to proactively manage customer’s needs,’ McManus added. “These practices help insulate customers from market swings or pricing

increases because of built in supply practices and defined economic adjustments.”

Selecting Coverage Levels: Beware the “Gotchas”

According to Dobbins, there are two common ‘gotchas’ to look out for when it comes to choosing the right coverage level. First, consider your geographic needs. If you operate in a saline environment, corrosion coverage is a vital part of your package. The second ‘gotcha’ relates to Life Limited Parts (LLPs)… “When an engine goes through an overhaul, the LLPs are not reset to zero hours – their limit is fixed,” he highlights. “That means buyers of older, or higher-time aircraft (perhaps one formerly flown in a Fractional Ownership program) need to be especially careful about the level of coverage they choose. Some coverage levels include LLPs, some don’t. “When parts reach their limit, if the owner hasn’t selected the right level of coverage, they will find that while the overhaul cost is covered, the cost of LLP replacement isn’t, which could result in a bill of as much as $1.5m per engine.”

hubs-print-ad-shorter-text (1)-converted May.qxp_Layout 1 23/06/2022 08:23 Page 1

5 MRO MAINTENANCE.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 15:07 Page 4



Krisko suggests the big ‘gotchas’ can be avoided with the right questions being asked. “Ask whether the maintenance provider will stand by the quality of its services and has a good reputation in the industry,” she advises. “Consider the types of spare parts that will be installed, and whether the plan fully covers parts and maintenance.” Operators should also establish whether LLPs will be replaced with new parts within the plan, she adds. “And operators should check whether upcoming and existing upgrades and service bulletins are included in the coverage, and whether the annual minimum of the plan matches the utilization.” There are other questions operators should ask, too, including whether the service centers are easily accessible from their base and other regular flying destinations? Does the plan cover off-site support? Will the support be given by a maintenance provider that can make it easy for operators to choose from a range of selectable coverage options, tailored to their platform and operations? Zozaya reiterates that customers must first understand 32 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

their projected utilization and the type of operation they will have – for example, there’s a big difference between private travel and charter use. Second, he advises, they should ask whether they’re looking for a one-stop service that requires a HCMP, or just need parts supplied, with maintenance handled in-house. The big question, Zozava

summarizes, is whether you, as the aircraft owner, are ultimately comfortable taking on the inevitable peaks and troughs of maintenance costs, or if you would be more comfortable with consistent, stabilized costs? The answer will establish whether a maintenance program is right for you, and, if so, the extent of the program coverage you ultimately choose. ■

More information from: • GE: • Honeywell: maintenance-and-service-plans • JSSI: • Pratt & Whitney Canada: maintenance-programs-and-solutions/maintenance-programs/

GERRARD COWAN is a freelance journalist who focuses on aerospace and finance. In addition to his regular features in AvBuyer, Gerrard's work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal and Janes, among others. Gerrard can be found on Twitter: @GerrardCowan


Atlas July.qxp_Layout 1 23/06/2022 07:58 Page 1


Full Service and Support for Modern Avionics in your Business Jet!

Why Atlas Air Service AG?

As an established provider of state-of-the-art avionics solutions for business aircraft, Atlas Air Service AG, together with its subsidiaries Augsburg Air Service and Altenhrein Aviation, offers customized solutions for Embraer Executive Jets, the Cessna Citation jet family, Beechcraft King Air Series, and Gulfstream G100 and G200 Series. Atlas Air Service was founded over 50 years ago and has V « iÌi` Ì ÕÃ> `Ã v >Û VÃ ` wV>Ì Ã > ` Õ«grades to the complete satisfaction of its customers. The company has been a constant in the ever-changing avionics industry and has continually invested in employee training and state-of-the-art tools and procedures.

“A key component of our service is our constant drive to improve and evolve,” said Radu Grigore, Deputy Manager – MRO Commercial. “We are continually working to improve ourselves and our customers’ experience of our maintenance operations. We can offer customers a wide range v ` wV>Ì Ã > ` Õ«}À>`ià q vÀ ÕÀ Ü Ƃ - "ÕÌ solutions to almost any customer request. To achieve this, we are in close contact with the best avionics suppliers in the market.”

Atlas Air Service Avionic Installations include: › Garmin G5000 for Citation XLS › Garmin G1000 NXi for Phenom 100/300 › Collins Pro Line Fusion for Cessna 525 Series › Garmin G600 TXi and GI 275 installations › Garmin GTN 650/750Xi upgrades › Cabin LED lights installation › iPad/tablet holders for cabin and cockpit › DU-875 Installations for Legacy 600/650 › FANS over Iridium installations for Legacy 600/650 › ADS-B Out upgrades › Honeywell FMS upgrade 6.1 for Legacy 600/650 › KA-Band Hi-Speed internet installation › Head-Up Display installation › Enhanced Vision System installation +49 421 53658 -760

6 MRO ROLLS ROYCE.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 13:44 Page 1


Rolls-Royce: Striving for Engine Support Perfection Can the challenge of meeting and exceeding engine maintenance support expectations ever be truly complete? AvBuyer spoke with Rolls-Royce about the engine OEM’s efforts to enhance customer support and pursue perfection…


ince the very early days of Business Aviation, RollsRoyce has been providing powerplants to the leading business jet OEMs, with Rolls-Royce engines today providing the power for some of the quickest, and longest-range private jets available on the new and pre-owned markets. Nowadays, there are more than 3,300 Rolls-Royce-powered bizjets in operation around the world. Given the propensity for OEMs building large cabin and long-range aircraft to select Rolls-Royce engines as their powerplants – the types of jets appealing to operators in many of the world’s developing Business Aviation markets – the maintenance and support requirements of owners and operators is spread far and wide around the planet. That’s a testament to the success

34 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

of the engines, but also a challenge to Rolls-Royce, which needs to ensure owners and operators enjoy seamless support, irrespective of whether they’re based in a region where the nearest qualified maintenance support is only a couple of hours away, or they’re in a remote area of the world where support and parts are scarce, and an Aircraft On Ground (AOG) event has the potential to be highly problematic. How does Rolls-Royce manage to keep its global customer base happy and flying? AvBuyer got in touch to find out… AvBuyer: How are the needs of business jet owners and operators changing today regarding engine maintenance, compared to five or ten years ago? And how has RollsRoyce been responding with the support it offers?

Rolls-Royce: If you go back ten years, our targets looked different than today. Back then it required several days to solve a standard AOG situation. Today, Rolls-Royce Business Aviation is aiming for 100% ‘averted missed trips’ – meaning no private aircraft running on Rolls-Royce engines and covered by a CorporateCare (or CorporateCare Enhanced) agreement is kept on the ground long enough to delay a planned flight. At the moment, we average more than 99% averted missed trips. Even though we achieved 100% averted missed trips for a full month in March this year, we will only be satisfied when we are consistently achieving this month in, month out. Our pursuit of perfection continues. Exploiting digital technologies to further enhance reliability and

6 MRO ROLLS ROYCE.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 13:46 Page 2

customer experience is key to getting to 100% aircraft availability. We recognized this early on and introduced a new engine health monitoring system, including an engine vibration health monitoring unit (EVHMU) which can monitor about 10,000 data points in an engine’s operation that, when analysed, could give us advance indication of a potential problem. Being able to see problems before they actually occur allows us to proactively resolve the issue, thus avoiding any AOG at all. When you're asking what to do about that last one percent, part of the equation is going to be our new engine vibration monitoring system. Also, we’re utilizing machine learning (otherwise called AI). Effectively, we’re learning from experience and letting technology do the work for us.

The newest Rolls-Royce engines designed for business aircraft – known as the Pearl family – are already equipped with advanced remote engine diagnostics and bidirectional communications, both of which make it the first IoT-enabled aero engine family, with easy to reconfigure engine-monitoring features from the ground. But increasingly more sophisticated and better-performing technology is in development. AvBuyer: After 20 years of providing CorporateCare hourly engine maintenance coverage for business jets with Rolls-Royce powerplants, you recently rolled-out CorporateCare Enhanced. What was the thinking behind this, and what’s the industry demand been like for the Enhanced program?

Rolls-Royce: We recognize the unique nature of our customers in this market, and through extensive dialogue with them we have a clear understanding of what is important in their operation. Therefore, we created a dedicated Business Aviation organization that understands the needs of customers who use their aircraft as time machines. It is critical to minimize disruption at the time of an event and return the aircraft to service as soon as possible. Of course, before you can meet an expectation, you must know what it is. And with business aircraft operators, no two are the same. One of the major channels for hearing our customers’ voices is Rolls-Royce’s Corporate Customer Council (C3). We start by listening to what our customers want and expect from us. We take that feedback to heart and use it to create and implement AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


6 MRO ROLLS ROYCE.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 13:47 Page 3


strategies as well as changes that will benefit the customer. That is one of our key differentiators in the Business Aviation market. One example of how the Corporate Customer Council has helped shape Rolls-Royce’s service offerings is C3’s influence on the development and launch of the CorporateCare Enhanced program. CorporateCare Enhanced offers substantial financial and operational benefits to customers, such as increased asset value and liquidity, mitigating maintenance cost risk and protection against unforeseen costs and unscheduled events anywhere in the world. Increased aircraft availability, reduced management burden, full risk transfer, direct priority access to the Rolls-Royce services infrastructure and remote site assistance are further benefits for our customers. Since we launched our CorporateCare Enhanced service in 2019, we have seen strong demand from customers around the world, who clearly recognize the value of this program. Demand was further confirmed by the recent capture of the 1,000th CorporateCare Enhanced contract. CorporateCare Enhanced offers an unrivalled, comprehensive coverage for the full powerplant, including engine and nacelle, and priority access to our dedicated Business Aviation Service Network. Our customers love the mindset of CorporateCare Enhanced, which can be summarised as: ‘If we provide it, we cover it’. AvBuyer: Speaking of enhancing engine support for operators, what are some of the key developments Rolls-Royce has made to its support services network around the world for business jet customers recently? Rolls-Royce: [As mentioned above] what's unique about Rolls-Royce is that we have a dedicated Business Aviation unit. This unit includes its own services organization, purposely set up to assist the special needs of Business Aviation clients, which differ 36 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

“...we created a dedicated Business Aviation organization that understands the needs of customers who use their aircraft as time machines.” from those in commercial aviation. The main difference is our powerful services infrastructure and our relentless drive to never let a customer miss a planned trip. The global network of Authorized Service Centers (ASCs) forms an essential component of Rolls-Royce’s services portfolio for business aircraft and adds to its own existing global aftermarket capabilities. Rolls-Royce has more than 75 ASCs in place with key maintenance providers worldwide – the largest in Business Aviation – allowing for rapid response times to our customers’ needs. The powerful service infrastructure of the ASCs is complemented by On-Wing Services specialists in the US, Europe, the Middle East and Asia as well as a number of spare parts, lease engine and storage locations, all placed strategically around the world. We have more than 70 technicians around the world, and our goal is to have an On-Wing Services team identified and ready within four hours of a call, and to be on-site in under

12 hours. So, from going AOG to having a team on site with tools and parts should be no more than 16 hours, no matter where the aircraft is positioned. This makes our global support unique. AvBuyer: How do you see the maintenance needs of business aircraft owners and operators changing in the short- and mid-term future, and how will Rolls-Royce be ready to meet these? Rolls-Royce: As already mentioned, time is often at a premium for our customers, so availability and reliability of the aircraft are more and more essential. Digital tools, from robotics and cloud-based analytics to big data will continue to play an increasingly large role in delivering exceptional levels of aircraft availability, as well as providing peace-of-mind for our customers. ■ More information from business-aviation.aspx

SPONSORED PAGE.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 15:22 Page 1


TAE Acquires Arizona’s Southwest Airmotive TAE Aerospace has completed the purchase of Eloy, Arizona-based Southwest Airmotive Corporation (SWA) in a move that will expand its PT6 MRO capability in the United States. While the ownership of SWA will change with the purchase, SWA’s management, staff, tooling, test equipment, and inventory will remain to deliver the same high-quality PT6 MRO services it has always provided. SWA will also retain its company name and branding. By joining the TAE Aerospace group, SWA becomes part of a global company now offering both PT6 and TPE331 engine MRO solutions to customers from multiple locations in the world. SWA gains access to TAE Aerospace’s in-house PT6 LRU MRO capabilities, including both Honeywell and Woodward FCU and Prop Governor component approvals, and access to TAE’s global inventory of in-stock parts as well as its exchange engine and LRU pool (available to all its customers to help improve turn times). According to Andrew Sanderson, CEO, TAE Aerospace, the SWA team is committed to continue providing the same great level of service to customers that it has delivered throughout its long and proud history. “At TAE Aerospace we’re an aerospace maintenance, engineering and logistics company with offices and customers

around the world,” he said. “Our main focus is the MRO of turbine engines and controls for commercial, BGA and defense customers, which means the SWA operation is a great fit for the business in the US. “We now have six locations throughout the US, as well as four maintenance facilities in Australia and offices in Europe and Asia. Our rapid growth around the world in the past 10 years is a testament to the strong reputation we have built for providing outstanding services and value in every market in which we operate. SWA is now part of that global growth story, and we are delighted to have their team joining ours,” Sanderson concluded.

More information from

C&L Completes State-of-the-Art Interior Refurb Facility C&L Aviation Group has completed the construction of a state-of-the-art 12,000sq.ft. Aircraft Refurbishment Facility at its Bangor, Maine campus, next to the company’s aircraft paint hangar. The facility will be utilized to address the increased volume in both regional and corporate aircraft interior refurbishment projects the company has been receiving for the past several years. “We’ve made substantial investments in space, equipment, and manpower for the aircraft operators we serve,” said Chris Kilgour, CEO of C&L Aviation Group. “The new facility, along with increased in-house capabilities, provide us with robust options for customers looking for anything from a basic replacement of soft goods to complete interior upgrades and modifications.” The new facility is equipped with a Gerber leather cutting machine, laser engraving machine, paint booth, seatbelt manufacturing center, separate assembly and disassembly

areas, and more. The new facility is one of five building projects C&L has completed since the start of the Covid pandemic. In 2020 the company purchased a local events center near Bangor airport and converted it into a component shop where it works on smaller aircraft components. The company also constructed a new 27,000sq.ft. aircraft parts warehouse, a 5,000sq.ft. extension to one of its hangars for storage, and a complete renovation of its corporate aircraft maintenance hangar, including new floors, walls, customer offices, and a state-of-the-art interior showcase and design center. More information from

AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


The era of the smartplane is here. It’s powered by Gogo AVANCE.

AVANCE connectivity can transform any size aircraft. Just like the smartphone gave people a single, user-friendly environment for their networks as well as their apps, services and productivity tools, Gogo AVANCE ushers in the era of the smartplane. AVANCE is the only inflight and entertainment technology platform that keeps you connected to everything and everyone that matters now, while ensuring you’re ready for what’s next — like the incredible Gogo 5G experience. It’s a single system that can be upgraded, supported and improved without needing to be replaced. Intrigued? Take an in-depth look at how AVANCE will transform your aircraft:

7 MRO CABIN ELECTF.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:08 Page 1


Cabin Electronics: New Jet Functionality for Older Planes Is the cabin electronics functionality dated in your business jet? What’s available to breathe new jet functionality into your cabin? Brian Wilson reviews what’s popular now, offering tips on how to enjoy a successful upgrade path…


inding the pre-owned airplane that matches your mission need can be a daunting task. Even more challenging is redesigning the cabin to give it a fresh new look, feel and functionality – but that’s often what is required to bring optimal productivity from your newly acquired plane. Like buying a pre-owned home, once the aesthetics have been addressed, the fun begins. The Business Aviation market offers an abundance of upgrade options relating to the cabin’s electronics. Whether you’ve recently purchased a pre-owned jet or have been flying your current airplane for several years, it’s worth reviewing the cabin, making a note of the areas where functionality could be improved. As you open your eyes to the possibilities of bringing new jet functionality to your older plane, you’ll need to consult with a seasoned

40 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

advisor. They will help narrow down the focus, homing in on the products that enable the functionality you need, and assisting with your upgrade project. First, there is a variety of items that you might be considering upgrading or installing to help bring new jet functionality to your older airplane. These include: ● Moving Maps ● Connectivity (Wi-Fi) ● Cabin Management Systems ● LED lighting ● High-Definition 4K Monitors ● Chargers, USB Ports, and HDMI Ports ● Cell phone/iPad Mounts.

What are the Popular Cabin Electronics Upgrades?

Before moving into the practicalities of bringing new jet functionality to your older jet, let’s look at some of the popular upgrades in each of these areas…

Moving Maps: These have been synonymous with Collins Aerospace for many years, and today Collins still offers the Airshow 500, 4000 and the new ASXi HD interactive map. Loaded with geographical facts, passengers can learn about the world as they fly with ASXi HD, and by downloading the mobile App passengers can view the 3D map on their own Personal Electronic Devices (PEDs). Connectivity: While this area could form an article of its own, we’ll focus on some high-level points. Determining where you fly will help identify the correct system for modernizing your cabin’s connectivity/Wi-Fi. Owners and operators of Super Midsize and Large Cabin jets may consider Honeywell’s Jet ConneX system, Viasat or Collins Luxstream, which are either Ku- or Ka-band satellite connectivity solutions, bringing connectivity to the

7 MRO CABIN ELECTF.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:08 Page 2

cabin in most parts of the world. For aircraft flying primarily in the United States, Gogo’s AVANCE Air-toGround connectivity platform not only provides internet access, but movies, TV shows and moving map functions, helping cover the in-flight entertainment, too.

a customized system that will meet the needs of any audiophile. Based on the ALTO Cadence system, a new feature called ALTO MySound was created which enables passengers to direct acoustic stereo or surround sound directly to their seat, at the push of a button.

Cabin Management Systems (CMS): There are many CMS’ installed in older jets that are twelve-plus years old, and face obsolescence. Upgrades can be very expensive – but the CMS plays an integral part in the modernization of a cabin space. So what’s popular, currently? Collins Aerospace’s Venue is installed in over 1,300 aircraft. A fiber optic-based system which can be controlled by either intuitive touchscreens or by a passenger’s PED, the system also has fully integrated moving map and Wi-Fi capabilities. Alternatively, ALTO Aviation provides

LED Lighting: Aircraft Lighting International (ALI) offers a vast array of Light Emitting Diode (LED) lighting options, providing greater intensity and longer life than conventional incandescent lights. The LED colour and intensity can be designed to cover any mood, from bright and fresh (promoting productivity), to muted (promoting rest and relaxation). ASI also provides a direct replacement for many legacy products, thus reducing downtime and costs. And don’t overlook Elliott Technologies’ Prizm lighting system,

featuring full-color spectrum mood lighting controlled through a mobile App and existing cabin lighting controls. Available for upwash, downwash, lower accent, galley, lavatory and cupholders, the Prizm lighting system is expandable to meet the needs of most business jets and turboprops. High-Definition Monitors: Rosen Aviation leads the way for aircraft monitors, and many In-Flight Entertainment companies like Collins Aerospace and Honeywell use Rosen’s monitors as part of their IFE solutions. Monitors range from 22” to 55” and include Ultra-High-Definition (UHD) and 4K options. Nine- and 12-inch plug-in HD monitors are also available that can be located at each seat, allowing a personal control and optimum viewing. In late 2021, Rosen announced a full line of Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) monitors, which provide a AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


7 MRO CABIN ELECTF.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:10 Page 3



significantly wider, better viewing angle over standard UHD LED or LCD monitors. Chargers/USB & HDMI Ports: Peripheral devices (although seen by many as somewhat ‘humdrum’), are essential to any cabin upgrade, given the proliferation of carry-on devices among today’s Business Aviation passengers. If you’ve ever travelled with plans to finish some work, or update your social media, and the charging units are nonexistent, or not operating while your PED’s battery drains away, you’ll have suddenly understood their necessity. Within this category, we also include Bluetooth for music and headphones, and auxiliary panels. Companies such as Rosen Aviation and Flight Display Systems (FDS) offer many solutions that will meet your needs.

gaining new jet functionality in your older jet: 1) 2)


4) 5)

Envision how you want your cabin to look and feel. With the help of an expert, select the components and features needed to create this passenger experience. Work with an MRO shop with a seasoned CMS engineer on staff and provide them will ALL your current wiring diagrams and CMS software levels. Have the engineer whiteboard the existing system along with the new configuration. Be prepared that the result to achieve your goal could be a whole new installation.

Be Prepared to Overcome Obstacles

Though there’s a danger our five steps to new jet functionality in older jets could ‘over-simplify’ things, the importance of the engagement of your trusted MRO shop, well ahead of any desired upgrade, will prove essential when you consider some of the obstacles and challenges that sit in the path of a possible upgrade. These include: Compatibility: A focal point of your upgrade, you must establish whether an upgrade option is compatible with your aircraft, as you attempt to integrate the newer technology into your older model. That’s especially the case for the CMS system.

Cell phone/iPad Mounts: Providing mounting brackets for Personal Electronic Devices is a great idea. Cell phones, iPads and tablets must be held or propped up to make the viewing of a movie or TV show adequate in-flight. It’s worth noting that mounting brackets can also have a charging port, and even an HDMI interface, allowing content stored on the device to be displayed on a monitor.

Five Steps to New Jet Functionality in Your Plane

Having discussed some (but by no means all) of the exciting upgrade options available to modernize your cabin, there are five key steps towards 42 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE


Satcom Direct February.qxp_Layout 1 23/06/2022 08:01 Page 1




• •

First network integrated terminal designed exclusively for business aviation Dedicated capacity for business aviation Enhanced troubleshooting and support capabilities

• • •

Only 2 Line Replaceable Units (LRUs) Minimally invasive installation Non-pressurized install capability

• • •

Open architecture Advanced antenna technology 6HDPOHVV FRVW H΍HFWLYH WUDQVLWLRQ SDWK DV VDWHOOLWH technology advances


FUTURE PROOF | +1 321.777.3000

7 MRO CABIN ELECTF.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:11 Page 4



“Advancements in technology for today’s business aircraft allow even the most extreme expectations to be met, assuming the budget is available to match.”


For example, obsolescence becomes a problem for many older CMS systems, and analog switch panels will require relabelling, while the digital types require software revisions. Existing audio/video controllers might already be fully utilized, with no open ports for new sources. Or they may not offer modern capabilities such as HDMI. Existing monitors are unlikely to be ‘smart’ devices, causing interface problems – or at the very least reducing functionality. Long Lead Times: CMS components and software revisions can have long lead-times, so stay laser-focused to finalize what you need, and get everything ordered in plenty of time. There should be a checklist showing

the quantity of components and software levels required. Interior Modifications: Another area of concern will be to address any interior modifications needed to support the new components. Bulkheads and panels might have to be redesigned and fabricated to fit new monitors. Drink rails and side panels may need alteration to fit the new switching units. Window lines or the headliner could require modification to fit new speakers. Audio technology has come a long way in the last 12-15 years, and newer systems use many smaller directional speakers to deliver the best audio fidelity, again necessitating alterations to the panels/bulkheads.

In Summary…

There is nothing more exciting than purchasing a new aircraft and redesigning the cabin, or bringing new life to the stale cabin of an existing aircraft, enhancing your in-flight experience. Advancements in technology for today’s business aircraft allow even the most extreme expectations to be met, assuming the budget is available to match. But regardless of the extent of the vision and upgrade project, it remains vital to take your time to properly plan the upgrade, establishing a timeline. If you solicit the expertise of a trusted MRO shop and advisor, you’ll soon be enjoying new jet capability in your older jet’s cabin. ■

BRIAN WILSON is the Director, Key Accounts at Gogo Business Aviation, an industryleading provider of in-flight connectivity and entertainment solutions. Prior to Gogo, he sat on numerous Dealer Advisory Boards along with being a member of the AEA Board of Directors.


44 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE


Data Capture December.qxp_Layout 1 23/06/2022 08:22 Page 1

8 MRO AVIONICS.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:22 Page 1


Measuring ‘Cost’ versus ‘Value’ of a Flight Panel Retrofit What defines value in a private jet flight panel retrofit? Is it all about cost, or are there other factors at play? Ken Elliott explores how you can measure value for your own upgrade...

alue is a way of expressing the worth of something, and although traditionally associated with monetary affairs, can be expressed in many other ways. This includes when value is applied to avionics upgrades in the cockpit of your business aircraft. The measure of value for the same item or experience can be low for one person and yet high for another, because value is subjective, and associated with context. We all assume that we can make the best value decisions, and sometimes, to avoid losing face, we will argue against our better judgment. To gravitate toward effective value decisions, we should do our due diligence looking at value across the full


46 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

spectrum of any project we wish to start, including cockpit retrofits. This implies measuring value in several different areas. For aircraft, and options for cockpit upgrades, there are the following value associations to consider: ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ●

Safety Flight Operation Cockpit Ergonomics Budget Return on Investment (ROI) Bundling Resale Extended life Obsolescence & Futureproofing Level of Integration.

The cockpit is the engine house of the aircraft where, over the cabin,

ergonomics replaces comfort and flight operations replace office/home experience. Safety, on the other hand, will always rate as the priority for any part of the aircraft. When you first consider an upgrade, cost naturally comes to mind. While many flight departments will place cost on one side of a scale and everything else on the other, it is never that simple. As many a sales manager would say “it depends”. For this article, we’re going to avoid the murky maze of budget numbers themselves, instead focusing on the factors that determine them. Cost is a relative business, and facilities that upgrade aircraft have their own way of determining them, based on margin expectations, available

8 MRO AVIONICS.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:23 Page 2

a different applicant owner, and some may be available for a fee, for use by companies who are not the applicant. As you shop around for the best value STC, make sure the discussion includes how well each STC version fits your serial number, based on current equipage and the hardware/software status of that equipage. You may find a lower-cost STC, but Amendments could take the delivery price way beyond expectation.

Some Core Upgrade Value Measures Some of the upgrade values themselves, include: ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ●

options, labor hours and bundling projects. Bundling can tip the value scale very quickly if the impact of bundling a cockpit upgrade with an engine or airframe event leads to an overall reduction in cost.

Different Upgrade Methods

Cockpit changes are designed, integrated, and certified in different ways which can dramatically affect the ‘cost versus value’ measurement. For example, if the upgrade is provided from the aircraft or avionics Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), as a Service Bulletin (or Aircraft Service Change) it’s likely – but not guaranteed – that it will be ‘as represented’, and the quoted price will be the billed amount. It is important to check that the

‘package’ (material and paperwork) includes your aircraft serial number, and that a previous owner (or you) has not modified your aircraft via a third-party since delivery. If the upgrade is based on a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC), it’s possible there will be several caveats and variables to consider – any one of which could lead to a costly STC Amendment, over and above the cost to use the existing STC. If the STC is based on an Approved Model List (AML), it is designed and approved to cover different models of aircraft and should include your aircraft make/model. For some models of aircraft there may be several STCs available for a similar avionics upgrade. Each will have

Safer operations The ability to undertake new flight procedures A positive return on investment An increase in the Aircraft Bluebook/VREF value Improved aircraft and equipment reliability Reduction in operating costs Reduced downtime for continued airworthiness Improved odds of an aircraft resale How the upgrade fits with the market mood.

Timing is everything and advice given this month, or this year, may be out of sync with the reality later. For example, understanding the market mood for your aircraft sector is relevant to decision making. In 2022, the demand for pre-flown aircraft is high and the availability low. However, at any point in time, there may be more light jets and turboprops available than large cabin aircraft. Proportionately, spending a significant slice of your budget on an upgrade could have a very different ROI and resale value for different aircraft sectors, based on the demand in the marketplace. Spending some time studying aircraft OEM deliveries and available pre-flown aircraft of similar size and performance to your own, along with price escalation or decline, could reveal useful data to assist in your overall decision process. Some upgrade values are obvious and others not so. Common sales themes such as increased safety, ability AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


8 MRO AVIONICS.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:24 Page 3


to fly new procedures and improved reliability are assumed in an upgrade. Others, centered on aircraft value, operating costs and reduction in downtime, are subjective. A quick guide to filter through those subtle upgrade values is to obtain data on similar aircraft valuations, equipage and pricing, through AMSTAT, VREF or JETNET. These are subscription aircraft intelligence services and are used frequently by brokers. Engaging your preferred or a new broker to tease out the subtle information may be very helpful, even if you are not currently trading your aircraft. Brokers are very smart on the market mood and their consultant aircraft specialists, with expertise on the technical aspects of each aircraft model, can steer you in a sensible direction. By reviewing comparison statistics, it is possible to figure out how a retrofit impacts aircraft valuation, resale potential and even savings in continued airworthiness (maintenance) & downtime. If the price of your aircraft model is declining in the marketplace, and an upgrade of your cockpit is going to increase the percentage against the total aircraft resale value, then your 48 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

decision should factor in how you are likely to recover your investment (ROI). Sometimes an upgrade is a necessity, tipping the value scale with ‘required’ as a non-variable. When this occurs, there will be a tendency to rush toward the most economical upgrade option, perhaps motivated by a limited budget, a time crunch or simply cash flow at the corporate level. While understandable, rushing is the worst way to proceed. This is a time to reflect on the right decision by seeking advice, shop around for choices and always keeping the aircraft resale potential in the back of your mind, even if you intend to own the aircraft forever. Examples of meeting necessity are obsolescence of existing avionics, mandates such as ADS-B Out, significant recurring repair costs and changes to where and how you operate the aircraft. While being forced to upgrade a singular product may be straightforward, upgrading a cockpit is not. Here is what you should avoid: ▪ Turning your aircraft into a ‘project’ because you were in a hurry and due diligence was not completed. ▪ Third party integration products, providing analog to digital

conversion in older aircraft platforms, that could be seen as a risk by a future buyer and particularly when it comes to international support. Examples of these can be found when upgrading to a glass cockpit but retaining analog controls or legacy remote ‘radios’. A cluttered cockpit appearance with kludged components. The current market mood, due to supply limitations, is “if I cannot get a new or a recent pre-flown aircraft, I at least want the aircraft I buy to look and feel like it is new or recent”. While mostly an exterior and cabin experience, the desire and expectation extend to an uncluttered cockpit.

These are value related considerations to weigh against the downward pressure of saving on costs. The result of hurried decisions may be favorable in the short term and disastrous later, when least expected.

Equipment Value Considerations Anything that can bring benefits to both cabin and cockpit will enhance overall value, a great example being

Flip P049.qxp 23/06/2022 08:07 Page 1

10% off the most anticipated

sale of the year! JULY 25 thru AUG 7

Industry leading performance 40% less power draw Shock and vibration resistant 30,000+ hour MTBF Five year warranty FAA-PMA/STC and EASA approved Easy drop-in replacements for legacy lighting

+1 (208) 850-3294



Daher recognizes Concorde sealed lead acid aircraft batteries for their reliability, superior starting power and long service life. Concorde’s RG-380E/44 is installed as original equipment on the TBM 700, TBM 850 and TBM 900 series including the NEW TBM 960. Trusted for our commitment to safety and quality Concorde Battery has been manufacturing batteries in the USA for over 40 years. CONCORDEBATTERY.COM | 626.813.1234 | ISO 9001 + AS9100

AVBUYER MAGAZINE R Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 R


8 MRO AVIONICS.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:24 Page 4


inflight internet. While bringing huge benefits into the cabin, connectivity is also useful to flight crew. Updates such as databases, charts, maps and information transfer, such as aircraft system status and enroute flight planning are just some examples of the benefits of cockpit internet. Sometimes small updates can provide benefits that exceed their cost in value. Installing AC outlets, USB provisions and easy access maintenance port give immediate facilitation to pilots and save on downtime for technicians to connect laptops for system updating and troubleshooting. Having weather tools from multiple sources is another equipage that has guaranteed benefits of value. Adding SiriusXM weather can be low cost if there is easy access for the antenna installation and while more expensive, upgrading the radar to one with predictive windshear, turbulence and lightning, keeps the pilot in control along risky flightpaths. Another equipment consideration is to watch the trending of price. A classic example would be Enhanced Vision and especially Enhanced Flight Vision System (EFVS or in Europe, EVS). At one time these were prohibitive to consider or had no factory bulletin or STC as a path to install. Manufacturers of both aircraft and avionics are rapidly introducing solutions to bring the aircraft closer to the final landing or take-off decision in low-visibility conditions. Recent changes to FAA Airworthiness Circulars (AC) are enabling approaches to touchdown and rollout in low Runway Visual Range (RVR) conditions. For many, the value of EFVS is hard to quantify, even as options become available and prices head down. However, there is a lot to be said for ‘taking off knowing you can land at the other end, irrespective of visibility’. There is also the bonus of seeing your aircraft next to a similar brand but having that EVS camera bump on the nose, and the little glass pull down screen in front of the crew. The ‘one-up’ factor, provided by these very visible upgrades of EVS and Head Up Display (HUD), can be a decider during a resale event. Nothing, however, beats the impact 50 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

“Nothing, however, beats the impact of 3-5 large clean screens across the instrument panel.” of 3-5 large clean screens across the instrument panel. When showing aircraft, it is very common for non-pilot buyers to be drawn by a slick paint scheme, then dwell in the awesome cabin, followed by a squeeze between the crew seats to have a quick scan at the instrument panel. When the panel is modernized and in keeping with a bespoke interior, the result of the quick scan is satisfying. From that point on the future owner leaves the cockpit details to the experts who wrangle over the contract, but, by and large, the aircraft may be considered sold! Outfit your aircraft in accordance with your need. If you are planning on

short routes or if that is the performance limitation of your model, then install equipment to meet that need. This mostly applies to the cabin and its capability but for the cockpit it may not be necessary to plan on significant airborne connectivity, when you can achieve your communication needs at an FBO between short flight legs. Integrated flight panels increase pilot ‘out the window’ time, but for short flights the benefit vs cost value may not be there to completely change the panel. Measure this against the risks mentioned in this article, where partial panel upgrades can have support and reliability issues. Pilot owners are more likely to understand the relationship between flights and equipage needs, where the capabilities and limitations are more intuitive to them. For others, any avionics sales specialist or broker subject matter expert (SME) can advise on this area. Pilot and non-pilot owners may have different value judgements and perspectives, which is partially why you will find all varieties of cockpits across the same model of aircraft. Getting the maximum use out of an upgrade is another consideration. In an

8 MRO AVIONICS.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:25 Page 5

environment where Lateral Path Vertical (LPV) approaches, in the US, now exceed traditional ILS, it begins to make sense to upgrade the aircraft Flight Management System and (possibly Flight Guidance for coupling), to facilitate the many LP/LPV approaches now available. It is wise to add graphic weather, electronic charts and enhanced maps, when upgrading a flight panel. The options involve a small amount of graft to install and yet a great amount of electronic capability enabled by the manufacturer. It also leads to an uncluttered cockpit, saving space and weight. If an option means more removal & reinstallation for access, more wiring and significant certification, think twice. If the option is mostly software or a fully compatible ‘slide-in’ component, then the value proposition is good.


In an environment where supply is below demand, the dynamics favor the seller. The squeeze is on the few available aircraft to be ready to fly, immediately upon closing the deal. Any delays from the buyer could cause the seller to unplug the aircraft and move it to one of many alternate buyers. This situation has

an enormous impact on cockpit upgrades, their cost, value and — most importantly — when they should be undertaken. Is it a buyer’s prerogative to upgrade, or should the seller plan to offer an aircraft that is as close to new as possible? There are arguments either way. For sure, if the aircraft is up to date and ready to fly, for a discerning buyer, the seller may maximize on price, reduce stress for all and expedite the deal. This would seem to be the wisest route to take, if not for the possibility the market mood may shift quickly and there could be an over supply of pre-flown aircraft. The price delta between new delivery and pre-flown aircraft is still sufficiently wide enough to allow owners of existing

models to repaint exteriors, replace interiors and upgrade cockpits, and still provide significant savings to buyers. The trick may be in making the updates look, feel and function as close to a new aircraft as possible. That is one large value proposition to consider. Anyone on this track should act fast as new aircraft manufacturers are ramping up both deliveries and new models to sell. In conclusion, price matters but it depends! Hopefully, this article has provided clues to sellers, buyers, owners and brokers that will enable them to navigate through the cost vs value challenge and come out the other side with an optimum solution for their operation. ■

KEN ELLIOTT has 52 years of aviation experience focused on avionics, in General and Business Aviation. Having a broad understanding after working in several countries on many aircraft types and avionics systems, he has contributed to several work groups and committees, including for NextGen, Airport Lighting, Human Factors, Unmanned Aircraft and Low Vision Technology. In retirement, he is striving to give back the knowledge gained with an eye on aviation’s future direction.



9 MRO REFURBISHMENT.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:44 Page 1


Seven Factors Driving Your Next Cabin Refurbishment What are the key factors behind most aircraft owners’ decisions to refurbish their business aircraft cabins? Chris Kjelgaard asks Duncan Aviation and Elliott Aviation to share their collective observations…

here are seven common reasons why business aircraft owners and operators decide to have their cabins refurbished. These seven reasons pertain, even in today’s overheated preowned aircraft sales market. Indeed, the fact that so many aircraft are being bought and sold is almost certainly creating a greater volume of cabin refurbishment business than would be the case in less heated market conditions. The reason any given owner may decide to have the cabin of an aircraft refurbished will vary, depending not only on what that owner expects to do


52 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

with the aircraft after refurbishment, but also on the look and functionality they want the cabin to have. Reasons for refurbishment also depend on whether the customer is operating the aircraft privately or for business, or offers it for charter. Other factors may be influential in determining the extent and nature of a cabin refurbishment. For instance, the geographical regions or areas in which the aircraft is mainly to be operated, and the typical durations of its flights, are likely to be important in determining the owner’s expectations of cabin comfort, functionality and service. If the aircraft is to be used mainly for

transporting corporate executives, any refurbishment is likely to emphasize the ease of doing business from the aircraft while in flight. If the owner plans mainly to use the aircraft for transporting family and friends, the refurbishment is likely to emphasize in-flight entertainment options and passenger relaxation. All of these factors play a role in deciding the work to be performed during a cabin refurbishment. But the basic seven reasons for performing the refurbishment in the first place remain — though only one or two (perhaps three, very occasionally) are likely to be involved in any given individual decision.

9 MRO REFURBISHMENT.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:45 Page 2

often helping persuade new owners to have refurbishment work performed is that the inspection teams at MRO providers will spot “areas of concern” in the cabin furnishings and fittings, and advise the owners that repair or improvement work needs to be done in specific areas, notes Jerrod Pickford, Interior Department Scheduler at Duncan Aviation. Generally, the larger the business aircraft that an owner buys, the greater the amount of cabin refurbishment work that they’re prepared to perform, says Hawes. But much depends on the condition the aircraft is in when the new owner purchases it, particularly in today’s market. “We encourage buyers to know the current market for the aircraft, and if it needs a new interior, how much it will cost, for instance, for a soft-goods refurbishment,” she adds.


2. Refurbishing an Aircraft Before Resale

Some of the most common reasons owners decide on refurbishment are when they decide to buy or sell their aircraft, or they choose instead to keep the aircraft in service.

1. Refurbishing a Newly Purchased Aircraft Possibly the most common reason of all for owners to have cabins of Business Aircraft refurbished is when they buy an aircraft “and want to make it their own”, says Suzanne Hawes, Completion Sales Representative for Duncan Aviation. Buyers can’t always find aircraft which closely match their particular cabin requirements in terms of look,

functionality, and comfort — particularly today, when many aircraft are being sold without ever being listed for sale on the open market. A new owner may decide to have the aircraft’s cabins refurbished to their own taste immediately upon completing the purchase. Often the fact that a sizable portion of the interior furnishings may be removed during a comprehensive pre-purchase or post-purchase inspection of the aircraft may influence the new owner to have a refurbishment performed on the spot, or as soon after the purchase closes as is practical, says Hawes. During such inspections, a factor

In normal pre-owned markets, some sellers choose to have the cabins of their aircraft refurbished before putting them up for sale, in order to have the aircraft “appeal to a broader prospect base” and thus maximize aircraft resale value, notes Meghan Welch, Director of Paint and Interior Sales for Elliott Aviation. In such cases, prospective sellers want to make their aircraft as widely marketable as possible, so they tend to specify that the aircraft be refurbished with furnishings and fittings — carpeting, upholstery and armrest and sidewall drink-holder finishes — of neutral tones and design, says Welch.

3. Refurbishments Ordered by Fleet/Charter Operators

Fleet and charter operators often have cabin refurbishments performed for one of two reasons, according to Welch. When buying used aircraft, each fleet operator wants the cabin interior of each aircraft in its fleet to have a look and feel which is unique to that operator, so any customer boarding any of its aircraft knowns immediately with which company they’re travelling. Often the charter or fleet operator will choose a bright and warm interior AVBUYER MAGAZINE Vol 26 Issue 7 2022


9 MRO REFURBISHMENT.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:46 Page 3




color scheme, and emphasize the attractiveness of the interior by installing LED lighting throughout the cabin, Welch says. Such lighting generally has the advantage of being programmable to allow different settings and colorings to suit different times of day or passenger activities (dining, sleep and/or relaxation periods, or work). Additionally, because fleet operators usually fly their aircraft much more frequently than non-fleet/private owners, when ordering cabin refurbishments they seek furnishings and fitting that are more durable and damage-tolerant, says Pickford. This often means fleet owners choose darker-colored carpeting and furniture upholstery, and having furnishings made from hard-wearing materials such as ultra-leather, he says. Such operators also want cabin finishes to be easily repairable and replaceable, choosing thin veneers rather than solid hand-carved woods and granite counter-tops. And, as a consequence of their relatively high levels of aircraft utilization, it’s also possible that some fleet owners have the cabins of their aircraft refurbished more frequently than private owners do. 54 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

4. Refurbishing for Business Use

In some cases, the customers buying used business aircraft whose cabins were previously configured mainly for private or family use want to use the aircraft primarily for business purposes, according to Welch. These customers will have their aircraft refurbished after the transactions are completed – and, typically, this might mean increasing the Wi-Fi bandwidth to the cabin in order to allow business videoconferences to be streamed to and from the aircraft. Similar to fleet operators, if the new owner intends to increase the amount of flying the aircraft does, upgrading the durability, maintainability, and quality of the furnishings and fittings becomes a consideration, Welch adds.

5. Refurbishing Instead of Selling the Aircraft

Mission needs evolve over time, and sometimes owners choose to invest funds in refurbishing the cabins of their existing aircraft to provide a better functional match to the missions they’re operating, as opposed to buy one that matches that need. “We’re seeing a lot of owners/operators really trying to have

discussions about maximizing and personalizing their interiors,” Welch explains. “They want to do their refurbishments to personalize the cabins for proper function, fitting their uses and missions.” Duncan Aviation is seeing the same behavior among its customers. “We do see some refurbishing instead of buying at the inflated prices of today’s market,” Hawes notes. Major MRO and cabin refurbishment providers such as Elliott Aviation and Duncan Aviation pay close attention to owners seeking to keep their aircraft in service, consulting closely with them on their personal preferences for their refurbished cabins’ look and functionality. For instance, says Welch, Elliott Aviation performs a lot of detail design work to make sure it can maximize galley space and capabilities, meeting each owner’s in-flight catering and beverage-service requirements. Seat designs and materials are approved with each owner, and entertainment options are discussed exhaustively to identify what each owner wants in terms of cabin BlueTooth wireless, audio and video capability. This is particularly what each owner desires

C&L Aviation March.qxp_Layout 1 17/05/2022 14:37 Page 1

9 MRO REFURBISHMENT.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:47 Page 4


in terms of passengers being able to use personal electronic devices in the cabin.

6. Refurbishing to Replace CMS/Increase Wi-Fi Speed [and/or Bandwidth]



Replacement of obsolete aircraft Cabin Management Systems (CMS) is another reason why owners — particularly of older business jets — choose to have cabin refurbishments performed, says Welch. Nowadays this is very often accompanied by installation or upgrading of Wi-Fi connectivity to the cabin, though Wi-Fi upgrading “depends on the subscriptions [aircraft owners have], and where they’re travelling”, says Hawes. “It’s variable.” Increasingly, also, CMS replacement

is accompanied by installation of dual USB charging ports (USB-A and/or USB-C) so that passengers can use their personal electronic devices onboard to view the Airmap display of the aircraft’s positional and velocity information, to watch films or listen to music, says Adrian Chene, Avionics Sales Representative at Duncan Aviation. (However, many owners are also specifying upgrades to their aircraft’s 56 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

Hi-Fi cabin audio equipment during refurbs.) Hawes adds that in most cases owners aren’t choosing to have cabin bulkhead monitors removed, despite the growing prevalence of onboard PED usage. But many are choosing to have onboard VHS tape players and DVD players removed as passengers increasingly look to their PEDs to provide them with personalized entertainment.

One area potentially of some design concern to Business Aircraft manufacturers is that outfitting an aircraft with dual USB charging ports for, say, eight to 15 passengers may alter the aircraft’s electrical powergeneration requirements substantially, according to Chene. Today’s rapid-charging dual-USB ports can require a power input of 60 watts, and when as many as 15 passengers are travelling, this can mean that the aircraft’s total power requirement, purely for USB ports, can exceed 1,000 watts. Modern Business Aircraft are designed with high electrical power usage in mind, and their electricity generators are sized to generate large power loads. But older aircraft, fitted with USB ports at every seat, could find their electric power-generation capabilities overwhelmed if every passenger wanted to use their PED at the same time. In the future, as more and more USB chargers find their way into the armrests of business aircraft, some may need to have more powerful electrical generators or auxiliary power units installed, Chene suggests.

7. Refurbishing to Coincide with Aircraft Downtime Some owners decide the time is right to refurbish the cabins of their aircraft — and sometimes for the aircraft also to undergo exterior repaint when

Flip P057.qxp 23/06/2022 08:15 Page 1


MORE_POSTCARD_4-1/4x6.indd 1

4/10/13 12:21 PM

Simplify Your Pilot Hiring

Save Time and Access the Largest ;| ouh o= -ѴbC;7 oll;u1b-Ѵ Pilots – For Free. -bm =u;; -11;vv |o - 7b ;uv; rooѴ o= t -ѴbC;7 pilot applicants.

ù Unlimited Free Job Postings

ù Hundreds of Pilots — from Low Time to High Time

ù Save Time with Filtering and Screening

ù Easy Application Review and Management

Post Your Job for Free at 1:39 PM

AVBUYER MAGAZINE R Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 R


9 MRO REFURBISHMENT.qxp_Finance 21/06/2022 14:49 Page 5



they’re scheduled to be in the shop for a lengthy period of downtime for other maintenance or upgrade work, says Welch. In timing cabin refurbishments to coincide with what is unavoidable downtime anyway, such owners aim to minimize the total amount of downtime their aircraft must experience over the longer-term. Co-scheduling of cabin refurbishment is particularly common when owners decide to have the avionics of their aircraft replaced or upgraded, Welch explains. During downtime periods for avionics work, owners often feel that upgrading cabin connectivity and CMS functions, and performing other cabin refurbishment work is a natural fit with the cockpit modernization, and is best scheduled for the same time.

Tips on Scheduling Refurbishments

While scheduling a cabin refurbishment to accompany other planned aircraft downtime has the advantage that all the logistics involved in the refurb can be carefully worked out well beforehand, that is not necessarily the case when an owner wants to have the cabin refurbished immediately after completing the purchase of the aircraft. For various reasons to do with today’s overheated used-aircraft market, global trade tensions, the Covid-19 pandemic, and the plethora of supply-chain bottlenecks affecting the movement of 58 Vol 26 Issue 7 2022 AVBUYER MAGAZINE

many manufactured items throughout the world, lead times for aircraft parts and materials are “extremely challenging”, according to Hawes. “Pricing [of parts] has gone up, and supply is taking longer, all over the board,” confirms Pickford. “It is affecting everything, from seat leather to carpeting to switch panels. And it’s not just the interior [of the aircraft which is being affected], it’s the airframe as well. You can’t get engine parts,” for instance. Hawes estimates that about one in every three used-aircraft buyers Duncan Aviation sees expects to have some kind of cabin-refurbishment work performed when they buy their aircraft. But the supply-chain difficulties Business Aviation is facing (as are many other industries) make scheduling the required downtime a tricky business. “When the aircraft is going through a pre-buy or a post-buy inspection, we do a specification session to get everything [which is to be involved in the cabin refurb] selected,” she says. “Then we schedule it out for those parts,” to obtain

“Buyers can’t always find aircraft which closely match their particular cabin requirements in terms of look, functionality, and comfort...”

a planned date for the required downtime to begin. The timing of the downtime required for the cabin refurbishment “depends on the work-scope and the parts the owners select,” says Pickford. “For instance, lead time for a custom handmade carpet can be 18 weeks. It’s pretty critical to have everything on hand when the aircraft comes into the shop. That’s the biggest thing — educating the client on where we’re at,” in terms of the lead times on every part the client has selected. While this means clients won’t necessarily be able to have cabins refurbished to their liking immediately after they have bought their aircraft, “the good thing is that they’re flying the aircraft” in the intervening period before the scheduled cabin-refurb downtime begins, concludes Pickford. ■ More information from: Duncan Aviation: Elliott Aviation:

CHRIS KJELGAARD has been an aviation journalist for 40 years and has covered a wide variety of industry areas during that time. He has served as editor of ten print and online titles and written extensively on many aspects of aviation.