LTP opens newly expanded hangar, announces new B777 capability
Asiana Airlines’ HL7626 is getting ready for its flight back to Incheon International Airport in South Korea. The two-year old Airbus A380-841 had recently completed its first C1-check at Lufthansa Technik Philippines (LTP)’s newly expanded hangar. It is the same hangar which underwent major renovation starting early 2015.
The hangar completion is a significant step for LTP and its aim to broaden its share of the Asian MRO market. According to an ICF International study, the Asia Pacific region continues to drive global MRO industry growth. With it are challenges and opportunities for aviation stakeholders created by new generation aircraft.
“It is important for MRO providers to adjust to the changing MRO landscape,” says Dr. Burkhard Andrich, President and CEO of Lufthansa Technik Philippines. “Current aircraft models are maturing, and newer more efficient aircraft types are emerging. With the hangar extension, LTP is able to widen its product portfolio and provision for future aircraft types.”
The construction took one narrowbody base maintenance bay (Bay 2) and an adjoining widebody line maintenance bay (Bay 3) and transformed them into two widebody base maintenance bays. Covering an area of 11,825 square meters, an A380 and B777 could fit comfortably inside, along with docking systems, linking bridges, mezzanines, backshops, support and customer offices, and a centralized toolroom.
HL7626 is already the third A380 that was maintained in Bay 2, following Lufthansa German Airlines’ D-AIMB during the first quarter of 2016, and another Asiana A380, HL7625 during the second quarter.
Expanding into Boeing territory
Meanwhile, beside the now fully functioning A380 bay, LTP’s entry into Boeing 777 heavy maintenance is moving towards fruition at Bay 3.
Bay 3 has always been a widebody bay. But when the hangar doors were adjusted, it freed up additional room for a full, tail and wing docking system. The investment has to be sustainable, so the docking was built with a flexible design, able to accommodate up to 13 different aircraft types including the 787 Dreamliner, 777-9, and Airbus A350. To prepare the manpower for this new capability, advanced theoretical and practical trainings were provided for qualified mechanics. Meanwhile, planners and engineers who make up the support staff went through familiarization trainings.
Ready for take-off
The MRO landscape has changed significantly in the past few years. With the growing fleet numbers in Asia, the demand for MRO has similarly increased, opening up more opportunities for MROs to expand their capabilities. By building up its A380 capacity and adding B777 heavy maintenance, LTP aims to secure the A380 market and grow its customer range to include B777 operators.
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3rd Quarter 2016
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LTP’s newly expanded hangar
Bays 2 and 3 undergo construction
Completed hangar expansion
Tail dock in Bay 3 can accommodate over 13 different aircraft types