In choosing the aftermarket facts above, I strove to find examples of how airlines and MROs are improving their productivity (answer D), but technology, logistics and efficiencies underpin the statements, too. So perhaps the foundational link is: E. Data.
Not surprisingly, data management, data standards and extracting predictive knowledge from the data were discussed and debated at Aviation Week's MRO IT Forum, Sept. 19-21. Fernando Ferreira Matos, TAP Maintenance & Engineering's head of information technologies, thinks the industry has too much data today and does not use it effectively. This could be exacerbated as more next-gen aircraft, such as the Airbus A350 and 787, become operational.
He says the A350 is requiring TAP to rethink its logistics system and how part numbers alter by uploading different software. This is such a big change that he predicts the workforce will view operations as “before the A350 and after the A350.”
Steve Bogie, Air Canada's program director for business & IT strategy, agrees that next-gen aircraft will send volumes of data on each flight but he does not expect airlines to download it all.
“What are the critical pieces that bring value to your organization?,” he asks. Downloading and transmitting data can be expensive, so he suggests thinking hard about filtering it and finding “the sweet spot.”
—Lee Ann Tegtmeier
MRO Edition Chief Editor