50 SKY SHADES - World aviation news

Drones inspecting aircraft is the reality today

Download: Printable PDF Date: 17 Jun 2019 07:12 (UTC) categories:
Publisher:
Drones inspecting aircraft is the reality today - Maintenance / Trainings publisher
Dana Ermolenko
Aircraft: Airplanes Airline: Air New Zealand

There is so many tasks where drone can be a solution. Do you think the aircraft inspection can be done by drone? It happens to be the reality by now.

Air New Zealand has teamed up with ST Engineering to trial the use of drones to inspect aircraft!

The drone inspection trials Air New Zealand is collaborating on with ST Engineering take place at its facility next to Changi Airport in Singapore where Air New Zealand aircraft undergo heavy maintenance checks.

ST Engineering has developed an unmanned drone system, known as DroScan, which sees a drone take a planned route around the outside of an aircraft to inspect its surface and produce high definition images.  These images are processed using a software with smart algorithms to detect and classify defects, which aircraft engineers can review and confirm, or carry out further inspection for defects if required.

Air New Zealand Chief Ground Operations Officer Carrie Hurihanganui says the airline is committed to exploring new and innovative ways of operating – including in the aircraft engineering space. 

“Using a drone to inspect our aircraft will save time, taking around one to two hours, compared to up to six – depending on aircraft type – which means repairs can start sooner if needed, and our aircraft will be able to get back in the air more quickly.

“We’ve trialed using DroScan on a number of our aircraft undergoing maintenance inspections in Singapore now and believe using a drone will also help improve inspection quality.  In future, there may be an opportunity to use the device in New Zealand, for example to conduct ad hoc inspections after lightning strikes.”

Deputy President of ST Engineering’s Aerospace sector Jeffrey Lam says, “Incorporating innovative technologies into aviation MRO holds great potential in enhancing the way aircraft get serviced.  We are happy to be working with our like-minded partner, Air New Zealand which shares the same motivation and belief as us in exploring the full potential of technologies to improve maintenance work. 

“We believe solutions such as DroScan will drive great value for the aviation industry given the huge emphasis it places on safety and efficiency, and we look forward to using it to great effects after we have completed the trials successfully with Air New Zealand.”

Further to the DroScan, Air New Zealand and ST Engineering are collaborating to manufacture a growing number of 3D printed replacement interior parts, and in data analytics to optimise maintenance activities.

 



Loading comments for Drones inspecting aircraft is the reality today...


Recommended

Tamarack Performance SMARTWING being flight tested

The King Air 350 being flight tested across the U.S. joins the King Air 200 modification on its evaluation journey, both featuring Tamarack patented load alleviation capabilities identified as the mos...

Croatia and France finalize Rafale acquisition

At a ceremony attended by the President of the French Republic Emmanuel Macron and the Prime Minister of the Croatian Republic Andrej Plenković, the French Minister of the Armed Forces Florence Parly...

New orders for Sonaca 200 by long-standing Sonaca Aircraft clients

As the year draws to a close, Sonaca Aircraft has received new orders from two long-standing clients: "Air Academy New CAG" (Belgium) and "Blackbushe Aviation" flying school and ae...

Pratt & Whitney and Embraer partner on 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel flight demonstration program

Pratt & Whitney has signed a memorandum of understanding with Embraer to collaborate on studies of 100% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). Technical teams from the two companies will engage to defin...