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Case Study: Vueling Airlines / STS

Vueling Airlines needed to retrofit their fleet of A320s with WiFi Antenna.  Their contractor STS, wanted to carry out the work on the apron in order to speed up the turnaround time per aircraft and reduce the contract price by eliminating hangar costs and movement cost.

The Opportunity

Vueling Airlines is an LCC based in Barcelona, Spain, with a current fleet of 114 x A320s. STS, a modifications company, was contracted to retrofit the fleet with WiFi. Because the modification can take longer than 72 hrs, the EASA requirement is for the work area to be hangared or encapsulated.

The Challenge

To get a cost-effective “rapid deploy” IglooMX® enclosure that could be in place for days at a time. It had to be portable, compact and easy to use. It also had to be suitable for use both forward and aft of the wing, allow space for a MEWP inside when inflated and provide enough space to open cargo hold doors. In addition, the modifications team needed to be kept warm and dry 24/7.

The Approach

JB Roche considered where the WiFi antenna was being placed and maximised the length of the unit so that the cargo hold work could be done simultaneously. In consideration of future modifications aft of the wing, the design team looked at rotating the unit through 180 degrees so that the fairing at the wing root, both fore and aft, was allowed for. 

The unit allowed for Genie scissor lift to be driven through a side door once inflated so that the modifications team would have access to the crown under cover. Ballast and tie-down points would ensure little or no movement in high winds as it was anchored by the Aircraft.

Considerations for the business case would have included the cost and availability of hangar space over several months in order to complete the project. This would have made the project unviable and cost-prohibitive. 

By satisfying the EASA and Airport authorities with a “rapid deploy” IglooMX® enclosure to allow the work to be carried out on the apron, the overall project cost was drastically reduced, making the Rate of Return for the investment of the shelter less than 4 aircraft modifications. 

The Result

On a cold Monday in October 2018, the IglooMX® was deployed for the first time around the Aircraft in Barcelona. The unit was inflated around the aircraft in under 10 minutes and formed a tight seal around the fuselage.

Both the Airport authority and EASA were also in attendance for this deployment in order to inspect and approve its use for these modifications work.

Both parties have subsequently approved the IglooMX® A320 Modifications unit for use.


The Result: Modification approval on the apron of 110 Aircraft at significantly reduced costs. The airline can now promote its new WiFi service to passengers. 

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Extra Benefit

Another resulting benefit of the IglooMX® is keeping your aircraft mechanics happy.

Think about working in extreme conditions – be it heat, wind, cold or rain! 

With the shortage of qualified personnel worldwide, providing comfortable and safe working spaces should be seen as a way of retaining staff. 

A mechanic is more likely to move jobs where better conditions like working indoors might be normal.

This is no longer a consideration or driver for them if you have the IglooMX® enclosures available for use.

The IglooMX® enclosure brings this extra benefit to you.

 

Can we help reduce your maintenance costs while keeping your engineers comfortable and safe?

Contact us today to talk through your requirements

Email: igloomx@jbroche.com  or call: +353 21 4320 320

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