Every plane moves through similar phases from the time it is built to when it is decommissioned. Properly handling the three important phases of maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) along the way extends the lifespan of a plane.
“MRO is one of the most important aspects of aerospace,” said Jamie Barron, Vice President of New Source Corporation. “The higher quality the material, the longer each phase of a plane lasts.”
New Source Corporation helps extend the lifespan of planes by providing aluminum extruded products, tubing, and other high-performance alloys for use in each phase in a plane’s lifecycle. Sometimes New Source Corporation provides maintenance, repair, or overhaul parts for planes that were originally produced with parts provided by New Source Corporation. “It’s a circle of life,” Barron said.
Though each MRO phase is important, New Source Corporation and its customers approach each one differently.
Regular maintenance extends the life of a plane by preventing problems. “Not only is the actual vessel quite strained when it’s in the air, but it’s also exposed to other elements like the weather,” Barron said.
Regular maintenance schedules should be a requirement, like for replacing sheet metal. Barron recommends stocking 20% more parts than you anticipate using based on your maintenance schedule to avoid not having enough supply on hand.
“The last thing you want is to have an aircraft that can’t be utilized because it didn’t go through its regular maintenance and that happens quite a bit,” Barron said.
You should have a reliable supplier that helps you keep enough material on hand and that gets you parts quickly when you do not have them, Barron said. Consider vendor-managed inventory services in which your supplier houses and manages stock for you as well.
Unfortunately, even with regular maintenance unforeseen problems can arise; like if a bird flies into an airplane’s engine while it is in-flight, causing the plane to have to land quickly, leaving it unable to fly again until its engine has been fixed.
More frequently, planes often need aluminum aerospace extrusions or similarly common repair parts before they can fly again. Such repairs grow more critical with every moment that a plane is out-of-service.
“It’s important to keep things on hand at all times to make sure that parts are always available when needed,” Barron said. “Turnaround time and quality are most important in repairs.”
For example, New Source Corporation quickly supplies repair parts that MRO organizations need to fix aircraft on the ground (AOG) so that they can fly. “As a small business, we are able to be more reactive,” Barron said, adding that New Source Corporation often ships repair parts the same day that they are ordered.
Many aircraft owners will refurbish an older plane rather than buy a new one because it costs less. In order to maximize the value of overhaul, most companies will want to utilize the latest and most advanced aerospace alloys to ensure an extended lifespan.
“You want the highest quality materials,” Barron said. “So pricing and innovation become more of a value-added service.
As a leading aerospace metal supplier of high-performance alloys, New Source Corporation works with its supply chain partners to provide customers with whatever parts they require. And, in following the strictest quality management processes, it meets all of a customer’s demands as a one-stop-shop for the materials they need to retrofit old planes with new parts.
Though overhaul requires a different approach than maintenance and repair, all three phases are important. Working with a supplier experienced in all three phases, and accustomed to the approach for each, will help you to extend the lifespan of an airplane.
With award-winning quality standards, New Source Corporation stocks a wide selection of metallic and aluminum extruded products to meet even the most urgent maintenance, repair, or overhaul (MRO) needs.