Maintenance organisation approvals are essential in demonstrating capabilities for MRO services. AviTrader's Keith Mwanalushi speaks to AerFin's James Bennett and Simon Bayliss about the critical systems involved in obtaining authorisations.

The approval of organisations that perform maintenance on aircraft and aircraft components is a rigorous process and vital to ensure MRO and support services meet specific requirements. Developing MRO competencies requires essential approvals. Securing EASA Part 145 was a natural progression for AerFin to build on and complement their already existing extensive engine disassembly and storage capabilities. “It was an essential procedure to demonstrate to the market and specifically our preferred airline, lessor and OEM partners that we can deliver a scope of MRO services that are fully aligned with the highly audited quality standards set by the EASA regulation authorities,” states James Bennett, Director Sales and Marketing at AerFin.

As Bennett observes, the market has faced significant engine MRO capacity challenges and, whilst some of this constraint will be eased because of the Covid-19 pandemic, pressures on operators to conserve cash will be significant. “One key area for cost reduction is more cost-effective maintenance solutions. So, this EASA 145 accreditation is not only a lever for growth but also supports operators’ need for flexible, tailored MRO services,” he says As AerFin was building its breadth of services within the MRO sector, it was clear that, in order to support and develop long-term strategic MRO partnerships with airlines, lessors, OEMs and MROs – securing EASA Part 145 approval would be critical to satisfy the quality systems of the business partners who set this as a mandatory approval requirement.

EASA Part 145 is the European standard for the approval of organisations that perform maintenance on aircraft and aircraft components that are registered in EASA member states. The EASA 145 accreditation sets a precedent for quality and safety standards, that must be adhered to carry out MRO activities.

Simon Bayliss, Director of Operations at AerFin explains saying a maintenance organisation exposition document is developed that contains material specifying the scope of work deemed to constitute approval and showing how a 145 approved maintenance organisation intends to comply with EASA Part 145 requirements. He says any requested MRO service that is not currently in their MOE would not be EASA P145 approved – additional MRO service approvals could be added to their MOE by demonstrating competency to EASA by desktop / onsite audit.

Bayliss takes us through audit process and says firstly, they submitted their EASA P145 application to the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), who then allocated AerFin an accredited auditing surveyor to scrutinise technical documentation, quality management systems, their MOE as well as AerFin personnel.

This was then followed up by an onsite visit by the surveyor, who carried out a full audit of AerFin’s 150,000 sq. ft. facility in Bedwas, Cardiff. “The audit consisted of a review of our MOE, an assessment of the processes and procedures that we have implemented at the facility, as well as interviews and assessments with key stakeholders within the business such as the quality manager, the accountable manager as well as the Form 4 holder – who has overall oversight of ensuring that the required standards are satisfied.

“Once the auditor was satisfied that these requirements have been met and that the business operates in accordance with the required standards set by the EASA regulation authorities, the EASA P145 accreditation was awarded to AerFin,” Bayliss tells.

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