Archive: Jul 2017

Avoiding AOG and Costly Downtime in the Aerospace Industry

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In the aerospace industry, the term “Aircraft on Ground” (AOG) refers to the effect of maintenance issues that are severe enough to prevent an aircraft from flying. When these situations occur, replacement parts or materials must be brought in as quickly as possible to prevent further delays and losses.

How Aircraft on Ground Affects Airlines

Aircraft Repair.jpgDue to their high upfront leasing or purchasing costs, commercial airplanes are designed for constant use. A 2014 Airbus A330-200 dry lease, for example, was listed for $513,000/month, or $17,000/day, in 2015. So if the aircraft were out of commission for three days for a B-check, the overall costs would amount to $51,300 — and that’s before factoring in maintenance labor costs.

When smaller airlines encounter AOG issues, they often lose more than $20,000 a day. Although many AOG incidents can be resolved within a day, the cost of a single solution for these scenarios can run as much as $150,000 an hour. For both small and large companies, AOG presents serious problems for their bottom line.

To avoid this type of costly downtime, it’s critical to partner with a well-respected supplier who can source materials as soon as they’re needed during an AOG situation.

Common Aircraft Materials

At Continental Steel & Tube Co., we provide a wide range of materials to aerospace companies across the globe. When managing AOG situations, aluminum is often employed for structural and aerospace skin applications. Some of the most popular grades include:

Aluminum honeycomb products are also regularly used in structural elements of aerospace applications. This outstanding core material offers improved weight-to-strength ratios, and is also an efficient energy absorber. Continental Steel & Tube Co. is able to supply a number of honeycomb material qualifications used by many major aircraft manufacturers including Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, SAE, and several Mil-spec requirements. Some of the aviation materials we most regularly provide include:

  • AMS3711
  • AMS3715
  • AMS 4177
  • AMS 4178
  • AMS 4348
  • AMS 4349

We also provide lightweight, high-strength titanium, which is often required with a fast repair turnaround. Many engine components and structural sections make use of the following titanium grades:

Continental Steel & Tube Co. supplies various nickel and high-temperature alloys as well, including Monel, Inconel, and Hastelloy, all of which are regularly needed for aerospace maintenance applications. These types of alloys are commonly used in gears and chains in landing gear, and often serve to secure engine and exhaust assemblies.

Partnering With Continental Steel & Tube Co.

As an ISO 9001:2008 certified supplier of titanium, nickel, and aluminum, we’re proud to offer industry-leading turnaround and short lead times for all of our aerospace clients. We understand the importance of remedying AOG situations as quickly as possible; we provide lightweight, high-strength, and corrosion-resistant metals for ultimate quality and safety without slowing down your schedule.

To learn more about our work in the aerospace industry or discuss an upcoming project with one of our experts, contact us today.