Airbus is introducing with airlines a new integrated solution for recording, assessing, monitoring and reporting aircraft structural damage via a tablet based portable tool. Called “eTech 3D Repair”, it can be used on the flight line by pilots and mechanics. Damage localisation is quickly and easily performed thanks to the built-in 3D aircraft models, and the tool provides a complete historical view of any previous damage logged for the aircraft. As well as making it easy to record damage characteristics in one click, eTech 3D Repair guides the user in assessing damage by giving access to the relevant digital structural repair manual (SRM) “ATA” chapters, as well as part names. eTech 3D Repair also includes a lookup function for consulting supplier manuals. If no standard repair solution is already listed in the SRM, then the tool facilitates a direct way to contact engineering to initiate an “Airbus Tech Request”. It is therefore possible to share quickly and efficiently all the damage data with the aircraft manufacturer or a FAR Part 21 repair organisation [or contact other suppliers by email], thus avoiding time-consuming message exchanges and administrative paperwork. The tool also enables maintenance staff to obtain rapid approval from the authorities for the repair, which will reduce the delay in putting the aircraft back into service.

In summary, the new solution, which replaces Airbus’ PC-based “Repair Manager” system, now brings mobility with a handheld device, making it usable by line mechanics and pilots, and generating significant time savings. It allows them to avoid dependence on paperwork, provides them with easy access to digital documentation, quickly shares information with OEM, ensures full damage traceability, and produces damage reports quickly – which is key to ensure the compliance of the airline’s process with regulations.