IFS used its annual IFS World Conference user and customer event this year to launch product updates to its SaaS-based fleet and line planning solutions for the commercial aviation industry.
While it might not trip off the tongue as the world’s most widely known acronym, A&D BU is the term IFS uses for Aerospace & Defense Business Unit.
This sector of the market is (of course) growing in technology terms as rapidly as any other.
As a key vertical for the firm, IFS works with aerospace in line with its line of IFS Maintenix SaaS-based software products designed for fleet and line maintenance planning.
The Maintenix brand now features IFS Maintenix Fleet Planner and IFS Maintenix Line Planner. IFS acquired the technology behind Maintenix from Ottawa, Canada headquartered Mxi in January of 2017.
Use of the term ‘line planning’ is used to express how the operations teams of airlines carry out line maintenance planning to make the most effective use of available maintenance resources and drive greater aircraft operational availability. This is also known as Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) operations.
So this is SaaS-based aerospace engineering management. Or, if you want it in other terms, it’s mission-critical maintenance for airlines managed by cloud software.
“Growing fleets, more routes and new, complex aircraft have increased the pressure on airlines to reduce maintenance costs, maximise resource allocation and boost aircraft availability. The maintenance plan is the foundation for this, as all downstream success – faster aircraft turnaround times, maintaining fleet airworthiness and keeping maintenance and materials costs in check – is dependent on having solid but flexible plans in place. With IFS Maintenix Fleet Planner and IFS Maintenix Line Planner, customers can more cost-effectively meet these needs while being able to quickly scale as the market grows,” said Scott Helmer, SVP for aviation and defense at IFS.
The company reminds us that commercial aviation is witnessing an unprecedented growth in fleet sizes worldwide. Key to an operator’s success is delivering the best maintenance plans that align closely with operational performance objectives while adhering to critical safety requirements.
What if scenarios
IFS Maintenix Fleet Planner automatically generates complex fleet maintenance plans and gives users the ability to compare plans against key performance indicators, model ‘what if’ scenarios and publish to production.
This product enables planners to create, maintain and communicate an executable line maintenance plan. The solution helps drive greater efficiencies by focusing attention on high priority items and identifying the cause of maintenance issues, such as lack of parts, labor or special tools.
Through automated workflows, IFS Maintenix Line Planner is said to help users to react to last-minute schedule changes and maximise line operational capability, maintenance task yield, and network resources.
The software was co-developed in partnership with LATAM Airlines, the largest airline operator in Latin America with a fleet of over 300 aircraft and maintenance facilities spread throughout South and Central America.