Home' Asian Aviation : AAV Dec Jan2011 2012. Contents Beijing-based Aircraft Maintenance Engineering (Ameco Beijing) says it
is closely monitoring the market for Airbus A380 maintenance, repair
and overhaul market (MRO) as it plans to expand its capabilities for the
type. The company also plans to expand heavy maintenance capability for
smaller A330 widebody twinjet.
With more than 240 A380s -- the world's largest jetliner -- sold to airlines
worldwide, Ameco says MRO demand for the aircraft is expanding.
Dr Andreas Heizner, Ameco's general manager and chief executive
officer, says the company has an advantage in the market, since it already
has an A380 hangar -- one of the biggest maintenance hangars in the
world. Heizner says demand and market opportunities will dictate exactly
what services the company offers.
Ameco invested 710 million yuan (US$109.23 million) in the development
of the 72,000 square-metre building of which the 41,000 square-metre
hangar is a part. The facility has the capacity to accommodate six conventional
widebody aircraft, or an A380 and four narrowbody aircraft at the same time.
The company also has a 10,000 square-metre, fully enclosed and
temperature-controlled hangar for stripping and painting aircraft types
up to the size of a Boeing 747. Component workshops cover 20,000
square metres, including: temperature-controlled avionics and electrical
workshops; a landing-gear overhaul shop; and mechanical, pneumatic
and hydraulic systems workshops.
The A380 hangar is currently utilised for line-maintenance on
Lufthansa's Superjumbo deployed on the daily Frankfurt-Beijing route,
as well as Air China's Beijing-based fleet and third-party customer
airlines. The company offers maintenance up to C-check, cabin retrofit,
modifications and other services for the type.
Airframe heavy maintenance (HVM) capability for A330 will be offered
to tap an expanding MRO market for the aircraft. With Ameco already
offering A340 HVM capability, the addition of the A330 will complete the
company's portfolio for Airbus's widebody jetliner family. Ameco expects
to do its first heavy maintenance check on a customer's A330 in 2012.
The MRO provider also offers maintenance and component repairs for:
Boeing 747, 777, 767, 737NG, and 737 Classic; and Airbus's single-aisle
A320. The company furthermore offers cabin upgrades for 747,777, 767
and 737 aircraft. -- William Dennis
Ameco Beijing eyes expansion of A380 capabilities
Korea's T'Way to add China, Philippines services
Korean low-cost carrier (LCC) T'way Airlines is finalising plans to fly to
China and the Philippines in 2012.
The Seoul-based carrier will introduce services to Cebu and Kalibo in
the Philippines using Boeing 737-800 jets in the second quarter of the
year, adding flights to Kunming and Xi'an, China, in the third quarter. It is
also seeking regulatory approval to fly to Japan.
According to a T'Way official in Seoul, the airline previously looked
at flying to Clark, a booming tourist destination in the Philippines, but
abandoned the idea as a rival Korean LCC, Jin Air, is offering five weekly
services using Airbus A320 jets.
The official said Davao and Kalibo, two popular tourist destinations,
would be more viable as there is no competition on the routes. T'Way
launched daily Seoul-Bangkok flights on 15 October, becoming the third
Korean LCC to operate that highly-competitive route, alongside Jin Air and
Jeju Air. T'Way will gradually expand its network further as its fleet grows.
The carrier, which now operates four, single-class 737-800s -- two
seating 189 passengers and the other two configured for 186 -- will add
two aircraft a year from 2012 to 2014. T'way has opened a sales office in
Bangkok to tap growing passenger traffic on the Seoul-Bangkok route.
According to the Tourism Authority of Thailand, South Korean tourist
arrivals in the first ten months of the year increased 46.1 percent to
654,490 as compared to the same period in 2010.
As part of T'Way's plan to introduce best industry practices in the
maintenance of its fleet and to reduce aircraft turnaround times, the
carrier acquired new Ramco Systems Series 5 software for maintenance
and engineering in October. The software will help the airline manage
fleet maintenance and supply chains.
T'Way, was previously called Hansung Airlines, was set up in March
2004 as an evenly split joint venture between the Cheongju city
government and University of Chungcheong.
The carrier received its air operating certificate from the Ministry of
Land, Transportation and Maritime Affairs in January 2005, and started
operations in August that year with a fleet of three ATR72-500 turboprops.
The airline suspended operations three months later due to financial
troubles, resuming in February 2006 after an injection of funds. The
Korean government later ordered operations shut down in October 2008
due to mounting losses, after which the carrier was relaunched in August
2010. -- William Dennis
10 AsianAviation | DECEMBER 2011 / JANUARY 2012
Ameco s A380 maintenance hangar
is one of the biggest in the world.
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