There are a wide variety of new tools and products out in the marketplace that have been designed to help mechanics and MROs do their work more efficiently, and to keep employees safe and organized. All these products are designed with two things in mind, safety and the bottom line. If, for example, an inflatable igloo-type structure can help mechanics work more quickly, safely and protect them from harsh environments, then it will be worth every penny. If a mister/humidifier can create a better environment for paint facilities by removing dust and fumes, again, it will be worth every penny. If a storage device can help keep track of expensive electronic equipment by storing and tracking them, well you get the idea – it is all going toward the bottom line of profitability. Check out these products and more in our hot product roundup for 2019.
21 years ago, Aer Lingus approached marine company JB Roche with a problem. Aer Lingus needed maintenance done on the ramp/apron. But with the wind and rain common to Ireland their work times were long and kept the planes grounded longer necessary. They asked JB Roche to come up with a product to keep mechanics warm and dry. The unique design of the IglooMX was created as a solution. The IglooMX can be erected around the necessary part of the aircraft by two people in less than 15 minutes and is easily heated or cooled depending on the outside climate. The durable material used allows IglooMX to be used for more than 10 years if cared for properly. The hi-tech fabrics were designed to withstand the harshest weather conditions. They protect against the severe cold, intense heat, rain, snow, and dust. Hangar time is expensive. Because the IglooMX structure allows for climate and weather control outside the hanger, it can cut turnaround time on an engine change over from 19 hours to 6.5 hours.
Falls continue to be at the top of OSHA citations for companies and according to Lighthouse Safety, two workers die each day due to falls. In a fall, in .67 seconds you’ve traveled seven feet, that is not enough reaction time to grab hold of anything, giving the faller 50/50 chance of surviving a fall 15-30 feet. Fall protection is a must in the hangar. Years ago, a Gulfstream facility required a fall protection system be integrated into their workspace and approached Lighthouse Safety. They have since gone nationwide in the aviation industry with their fall protection products. Lighthouse Safety has been doing engineering, training and installation for fall protection systems for more than 30 years. They engineer systems for any type of hanger, with the option for low trigger heights of 5-7 feet. They have the ability to provide engineered drawings before installation to show full coverage for each specific hanger. These engineered systems help businesses and their facilities meet safety standards set by OSHA and ANSI. Lighthouse Safety also provides post installation training.
Collins Designs Automated Guide Vehicle
Collins Aerospace boasts of a culture of continuous improvement to optimize operations for efficiency and effectiveness and to provide the best service for their customers. They say combining proven processes and procedures with new products have been critical to their success. For example, they have designed an Automated Guide Vehicle (AGV) at their Monroe, N.C. facility. This AGV creates operational efficiency between facility departments by collecting pertinent data to maximize tasks. At their Singapore facility, they say they have reduced total lead time by 3.5 hours by reducing operator walking distance by more than 90 percent by leveraging an Autonomous Intelligent Vehicle. Building on these successes, Collins says they are strategically looking at other areas of automation to better leverage these advanced capabilities and materials planning within their MRO facilities.
Avionics Performance Testing from Factory to Flight Line
The VIAVI (formerly Aeroflex) IFR6000 Transponder Test Set has been the industry standard for more than a decade for transponder and traffic testing. The FAA ADS-B mandate has brought more users and capability to the IFR6000, including an ADS-B auto test with a PASS/FAIL designation. VIAVI recommends using the UC-584 Antenna Coupler to avoid signal interference. Visit our website to learn how VIAVI avionics test solutions can help prepare you for the modernization of airspace. For more information go to https://www.viavisolutions.com/en-us/product-category/test-measurement/avionics-test/ads-b-compliance
Mantec Services Inc. Magnetic Safety Bumpers
Recently Mantec Services introduced a line of magnetic safety bumpers. The company says it saw a need and used knowledge from their custom foam safety bumper line to create this new version. The magnetic bumpers feature easy installation and relocation – no screws needed. These bumpers have a durable urea coating for improved damage prevention and additional UV protection and are made from waterproof, closed cell foam. The bumpers come in 24”, 36”, 48” and 60” lengths. Mantec says the magnetic properties of the bumpers make them easy to install in hard-to-reach places. The powerful magnets used inn these bumpers can cause flux so the company cautions use to avoid using them around devices sensitive to magnetic flux. Mantec also has a full line of safety bumpers that are in use by OEMs, airlines, and MROs. Mantec says they can custom design and manufacture their regular safety bumpers to suit individual needs.
Coolture was founded after designer Van DiBernardo was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Battling with a cumbersome, unattractive cooling vest that he wore to battle heat intolerance, he decided the product could be improved and created his own design. DiBernardo and his team realized that there were many applications for their vests across multiple industries, professions, and consumers. When the body cannot get rid of excess heat, it will store it. As the body continues to store heat, workers begin to lose concentration and may become irritable, sick, or in extreme cases even die. Every year, thousands of workers become ill from occupational heat exposure, leading to heat injury and heat stroke. Cooling the core body eliminates the mental and physical exhaustion that can lead to accidents on the job, while also helping to prevent heat injury. Workers most at risk of heat stress include those who are 60 years of age or older, are overweight, have heart disease or high blood pressure, or take medications that incite heat intolerance. The Coolture classic vest is made from durable, athletic, exterior fabric and has 100% memory recall that uses Outlast “space age” technology, developed for NASA that absorbs and stores body heat. 3M Thinsulate prohibits the sun from affecting the CoolPaks inside the vest. Similar to dry ice, Coolture CoolPaks freeze colder than ice or gel, remain colder longer and weigh less than ice or gel. These versatile vests can be heated to provide warmth in cold climates as well.
Ikeuchi Makes AKIMist “E” Foggers for Use in MRO/Paint Facilities
Dust and paint suppression systems and humidification systems like AKIMist “E” are offered by Ikeuchi. These customized solutions can be adapted to a customer’s hangar. Ikeuchi takes into account the various influences that have an impact on the solution offered. Sanding and painting in the same hangar can cause issues for MRO paint shops, one of them being dust particles in the air. The AKIMist “E” system sprays small water droplets in the air during and after the sanding process to suppress dust. The water droplets attach themselves to dust particles, and weigh them causing them to fall down to the ground. The water droplets that are sprayed into the air serve as a natural conductor for ions, thereby preventing static charge. These two effects prevent dust particles from sticking to objects. Paint fumes will also be absorbed by the water droplets, cleaning the air in the process. In addition, adding more humidity in the air helps to improve the drying of water-based solvents, Ikeuchi says. Using air and water, pneumatic nozzles can create small-sized droplets. These small droplets will not break; dust will be suppressed without wetting the environment. Precisely engineering the droplet size and distribution creates a uniform fog curtain so the target space will be effectively humidified. Ikeuchi says their systems are easy to install and can be added on to existing HVAC systems.
SupplyPoint Solutions Take Control of Handheld assets
Innovative RotoPoint carousels and Clear Front Locker systems by SupplyPoint are designed to ensure t achieve both security and user-friendly access to valuable assets such as handheld scanners and mobile devices, which are becoming more prevalent in the MRO environment. Inventory and asset management is made easy, reliable and cost effective by removing the worry and cost of important devices becoming misplaced or accidentally damaged.
RotoPoint provides a scalable and cost-effective inventory carousel solution for the secure management of a wide range of handheld assets. Running from a standard, single-phase 120V supply, the high capacity of the unit makes the management and control of scanners and mobile devices easy. Available in three sizes offering up to 468 locations with 24/7 availability, the system can be easily reconfigured in line with individual requirements. For instance, every other column divider in RotoPoint is removable, allowing each compartment to be made twice the width to suit larger scanning devices.
Access to each compartment is controlled for maximum security, with all transactions logged to a specific user and cost center, thus providing full and accurate audit and reporting capabilities, SupplyPoint says. The majority of compartments in RotoPoint are hidden from view behind sturdy sliding doors, while contents can be randomly distributed around the carousel, further reducing the risk of unauthorized removal.
SupplyPoint’s Clear Front Locker provides an economic inventory access solution. The system is ideal for larger handheld scanners or mobile devices, with each locker consisting of three vertical stacks which can be configured using three, six or nine electronically controlled clear-front cupboards. These functional and intelligent powered cupboards provide recharging and serial/asset tag tracking via scan in/scan out capability.