Striking the right balance between operational requirements and financial considerations is the crux of the challenge faced by airlines when addressing the total cost of ownership of their aircraft assets. By combining technical, operational and engineering know-how, AFI KLM E&M deploys solutions and expertise adapted to this particular challenge throughout the operational lifespan of an aircraft and its engines, right up until their end-of-life phase.
The art of optimizing fleet ownership costs
With many airlines having stepped up their fleet renewal plans and the shift toward new-generation aircraft in recent years, the challenges of end-of-life/phase-out management are becoming more pressing and critical than ever before. With its dual profile as an MRO/Airline, AFI KLM E&M is in an ideal position to advise airlines on the right strategy for their needs, and to provide customized recommendations on how to optimize their Total Cost of Ownership.
Expert TCO consulting and action plans
“As an Airline-MRO, optimizing Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) is an everyday pursuit for AFI KLM E&M. We’re able to take the experience acquired with our own fleets and extend it to our customer airlines: the aim of the game is to deliver the right technical recommendations needed to meet the contractual conditions of return agreed with the lessor company, at the lowest cost. These recommendations may consist of ‘staggering’ in order to reduce the pace of wear-and-tear an engine experiences, or the performance of light repairs in order to extend the overall lifespan. Or they may involve Shop Visit management, which aims to reduce the number of visits required in order to restore the product to its potential. We can tell ahead of time whether an issue is likely to occur, and provide a proposal for the most optimal course of action in operational and economic terms, such as water washing or blade replacement.”
VP Engine Technical Sales
With its Prognos® predictive maintenance solution, AFI KLM E&M is able to further refine its advisory services, closely monitoring the critical engine elements and parameters that count towards the conditions of return, such as the Exhaust Gas Temperature (EGT) margin.
Forward planning and organization
A phase-out strategy can be approached from two distinct angles: fleet-based or event-based.
“The fleet-based strategy is about global thinking and long-term vision. Depending on the phase-out timeframes and conditions involved, it’s a question of identifying which engine to install on which aircraft, of estimating and anticipating the maintenance operations to be performed (and how much they cost) in order to bring the engine up to the right standard at the right time – all while reducing the economic burden of these events via more targeted and cost-effective alternatives: Quick Turn, Hospital Chain, On-Wing/On-Site operations, etc. The event-based strategy, meanwhile, applies to a given aircraft or engine, and involves the organization of a phase-out workshop. The goal here is to implement project management in order to plan the aircraft’s return, along with all the associated tasks – both administrative and technical – necessary in order to deliver the asset to the leasing company on time and in accordance with the conditions agreed upon.”
VP Engine Fleets Engineering
Thanks to the experience of its engineering teams, AFI KLM E&M possesses the technical insight necessary to weigh these various options and orchestrate the best possible strategy.
“The event-based strategy, meanwhile, applies to a given aircraft or engine, and involves the organization of a phase-out workshop. The goal here is to implement project management in order to plan the aircraft’s return, along with all the associated tasks – both administrative and technical – necessary in order to deliver the asset to the leasing company on time and in accordance with the conditions agreed upon.”
VP Engine Fleets Engineering
In its tireless pursuit of TCO reduction, AFI KLM E&M has another asset up its sleeve: the fact that its network includes the engine dismantling specialist Bonus Tech. As part of a fleet-based strategy, the dismantling of an engine during its end-of-life phase is an opportunity to access reconditioned replacement parts, which can then be re-used for maintenance events on another engine, and consequently shave further expense off the cost of ownership.