Helicopter maintenance is often a challenge, particularly for the ones operating in a harsh and rough environment. In such conditions, the parts may degrade faster than usual. To ensure that the helicopter is running at optimal efficiency, its pieces need to be repaired and maintained regularly. Helicopters are also subject to metal fatigue. In addition, the engine, transmission, rotor parts, and other control mechanisms have a limited lifespan. Hence, the components need to be checked at regular intervals.
To keep your helicopter in the best shape and increase its lifespan, you can outsource Helicopter MRO services to a reliable company. These companies provide solutions for recovery, repair support, damage survey, and incident repair packages. It helps to ensure that the helicopter is performing at its best. The Helicopter MRO market is projected to hit USD 5.5 billion by 2025 at a CAGR of 10.8%. There are multiple benefits of outsourcing MRO services. It includes facilitating maximum passenger and crew safety, minimizing operating costs by optimizing performance, and reducing risks/ mechanical failures in the helicopter. These companies require approval and certification of facilities, services, and infrastructure by the regulatory aviation safety bodies.
However, choosing the right company for MRO services can be daunting. Here are eight things you should consider to make the right choice.
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Types of Services Required
Determine the type of MRO services you require. It can range from airframe maintenance, landing gear services, engineering services to component repair. For example, do you need repair services to build worn-out parts? Or are you looking for assistance to modernize rotorcraft for rotary-wing platforms, including airframes and avionics? Define what kind of maintenance, repair, or overhaul services you need for your helicopter, and choose an MRO company accordingly.
Specialization Of The Company
Are the MRO engineers skilled and trained to handle and repair your airframe and engine? Reciprocating engines demand different kinds of services required by a turbine engine. The company needs to have comprehensive knowledge about helicopter machines, the airframes they power, and other operating and maintenance aspects of each engine. The specialization of Helicopter MRO engineers varies from one company to another. Ensure that they are trained to handle your helicopter type.
Ensure if the company can provide round-the-clock support for procurement and supply of spares and consumables. Determine if you can procure the components under the stock exchange or on a rental basis. They should be capable of providing services at any time, be it for late-night or midday emergencies. The Helicopter MRO Company needs to provide services for assembly and dismantling of helicopters at any given hour.
The working operation of the company should be aligned with the regulatory compliance services. It should also adhere to the facilitation services for import, assembly, initial airworthiness certification, and aircraft induction. Proper certifications demonstrate competence, experience, and dedication in the concerned industry. In addition, the company needs to be approved by the regulatory authorities to carry out line and base maintenance for the concerned helicopter.
Availability Of Spare Parts
Ensure that the company maintains an adequate inventory of spares and consumables, which can be supplied to you on short notice, as and when required. The product they provide should be certified by the engine manufacturer for security. Ask the MRO company to supply the spare and consumables, including fuel, lubricants, patches, and more on-site. The company should have a faster turnaround time so that you can bring your helicopter to service immediately.
Before selecting a company, you can research their client base and approach them for feedback. It will help ascertain if the company can provide the best services to keep your helicopter safe, serviceable, and airworthy. Choose a company that has significant experience and expertise in providing operation and support of your aircraft types. Moreover, it should be capable of delivering a customized solution instead of following a rigid one-fits-all approach. Finally, carefully evaluate the NDA condition and other terms and policies before signing an agreement.
Tools, Resources, And Technologies
The MRO engineers should be highly skilled. They need to make use of the latest tools and technologies in component repair and overhaul. From minor modifications to major structural repairs, the team should provide rapid on-site field repair services. In addition, the tools and technologies should cater to the demands of the present market.
The helicopter repair and maintenance company should communicate about the present status of your helicopter. They need to maintain transparency in the service practices. Moreover, they should convey to you the processes required to sustain your helicopter’s readiness rate. Ensure that you are not incurring any hidden charges for the MRO services.
While choosing a helicopter repair and maintenance company, you need to take care of the points mentioned above. In addition, it will help you ensure the preservation of rotorcraft to maintain the airworthiness and longevity of your helicopter and guarantee the safety of operations, passengers and crew.