This summer, Pratt & Whitney Canada began providing fly-away kits of components for 15 to 17 line replaceable units (LRUs) to PW307- and PW308-powered Dassault Falcon operators who are customers for the OEM’s Eagle Service Plan (ESP) Platinum Helpdesk on-condition maintenance service.
Sateeshkumar Kumarasingam, P&WC’s v-p customer service, told AIN the kits enable operators of Dassault Falcon 7Xs, 8Xs, and 2000EXs/DXs/LXs to change LRU components without having to order them from P&WC, as long as their PW300-family engines are fitted with P&WC’s Flight Data Acquisition, Storage, and Transmission (FAST) condition-monitoring boxes. Customers use the kits’ components—the contents of which vary by engine model—to replace installed LRU components when the FAST health-monitoring data indicates certain maintenance issues.
Bjorn Stickling, P&WC’s director of digital engine services, said the fly-away kits contain the ignition cable; ignition exciter; igniter; igniter gasket; oil filter; fuel filter; oil check valve piston; oil check valve sleeve, oil chip detector, oil pressure adjustment valve sleeve; and oil pressure adjustment valve.
Stickling said 90 percent of the Falcon 7X, 8X, and 2000EX fleet is currently FAST-equipped. This allows P&WC to analyze the performance and engine-health trends of their PW307s and PW308s throughout every phase of flight. “It has made a big difference in how we approach the operators,” he said.
However, after P&WC (Booth 3238) started making the FAST service available for Falcons under ESP Platinum plans, it found that despite the much greater amounts of engine-condition information operators were receiving from the OEM, 80 percent of all their engine maintenance related to key availability drivers such as oil pressure remained unscheduled.
P&WC found that “the operators needed interpretation” of condition-trend data to perform maintenance in a timely fashion, said Stickling. “This challenged us to get assistance to operators to do the right maintenance at the right time.” So P&WC decided to become more proactive with operators by launching its Platinum Helpdesk.
“We take those trend alerts, we look at the logistics, the reliability of the engine and the mode [of failure] and we call the customer proactively, so the customer takes the right action at the right time,” said Stickling. “We flipped [the situation] on its head,” so that now “only 20 percent” of PW307/PW308 on-condition maintenance related to specific key availability drivers requires “unscheduled interventions.”
P&WC has extended its FAST service to the PW306D1 powering the Cessna Citation Latitude. The service is also available for the PW800 series “out of the box,” as well as the PT6A turboprop and turboshaft engines that power the Pilatus PC-12, Leonardo AW139, the Beechcraft King Air family “and the new TBMs out of the box,” said Stickling. More than 2,500 FAST systems are now in service, and P&WC has accumulated more than 1 million hours of full-flight engine data.
In addition to making FAST available “for the original bill of material for OEMs,” P&WC has also designed FAST to be easy to retrofit to aircraft such as King Airs, according to Stickling. Each installation requires less than 50 man-hours.
“We are looking across all of our aircraft platforms powered by P&WC engines to determine which ones represent the strongest value proposition in benefits to the operators, so we can prioritize,” he said. “Currently, we are focused on PT6A-powered aircraft and also advancing FAST technologies such as propeller-vibration trend monitoring—currently available for regional airlines—and automated power-assurance check, available for helicopters.”