12 Burns & McDonnell • www.burnsmcd.aero • 2013 Aviation Special Report
heavier maintenance checks that can last for weeks and require
nearly constant access to every part of the aircraft.
How do you safely implement the speed needed for line
repairs? Flexibility to park aircraft in any configuration for quick
maintenance is paramount in line maintenance operations. Shelter
for inclement weather protection also creates an unpredictable
aircraft parking pattern. The need for fast access and lack of
predetermined parking layouts impede the use of many fixed work
stands, which take up precious floor space and can’t be moved
between densely parked aircraft.
In any hangar, general power for tools, equipment, compressed air,
water and communications lines, as well as 400 hertz of aircraft
power, must be available at locations convenient to the aircraft
service points and workstations. Long cable and hose runs to
distant wall-mounted connections
create clutter and safety hazards
across the hangar floor. New
designs in utility pits offer multiple
utility connections in floor pits
that “pop up” to provide those
connections at the aircraft service
points. Proper layout of these pits
eliminates clutter and improves
safety. These latest designs offer
ease of use and reliability for the
constant usage they must serve.
Power lift platforms, bucket
trucks and wheeled work stands
have been the traditional fixed
equipment for line maintenance.
But there has always been a
tradeoff: increased hangar floor
area required to position that
equipment. Teleplatforms are the
magic carpets of the aircraft hangar. Mounted on an overhead
bridge crane system, these platforms can swiftly travel to any point
around any aircraft type for fast and safe maintenance access.
Designed to minimize the floor area requirement for maneuvering,
the newest generation of power lift platforms can turn 360
degrees within their own footprints. New mini units, as small as
1 square meter, can deliver a mechanic and his tools up into a
wheel well, lower cargo hold, and other tight areas with ease.
Paint Hangars Require Special Consideration
Paint hangars are a special breed. Painting the equivalent of a
large house and then adding elaborate graphics is a unique and
expensive operation. Successful application requires airflow across
the aircraft, at 75-100 feet per minute, to ensure a smooth finish.
The air moving through the hangar must also be treated — in the
desert, outside air must be cooled and in cold climates it must
hangars, eliminates the requirement to tow the aircraft over great
distances to perform run-ups and provides excellent protection to
the surrounding area from dangerous jet blast.
When both jet blast hazards and run-up noise are issues, a jet
blast deflector can be combined with an acoustically treated
run-up facility known as a ground run-up enclosure (GRE). A
GRE reduces the acoustic impact of run-ups on airports and
surrounding communities, allowing MRO operators to run-up at
night when high-power operations are typically restricted. New
modular GRE designs are available for smaller MROs, which allow
the facility to be built in stages. Operations could begin with just
a jet blast deflector to create a safe environment around the ramp
and, later, add one, two or three acoustically vented side walls to
minimize the acoustic impact of engine run-ups.
be heated. In many locations, air humidity must be adjusted. All
that equipment to treat and move air, plus the energy to power it,
makes the air treatment process expensive.
How can you reduce that high cost? Don’t waste that expensive air
in exhaust. New filter systems offer dry media that remove paint
particles from that airstream to allow as much as 60-75 percent
of it to be recirculated instead. Reduced outside air volume means
less new air to treat, smaller equipment, and lower operating costs
throughout the life of the building.
Improvements on the Outside
New technologies are coming outside the hangar as well as inside.
Engine run-ups are a standard requirement for maintenance,
repair and overhaul (MRO) operations. A jet blast deflector wall/
fence designed for high power run-ups, installed near maintenance
A jet blast deflector can be paired with a ground
run-up enclosure to reduce towing requirements outside the hangar and provide jet blast
protection in the area.
Continued from page 11