Obsolescence or... Obsole-Science?
A sunny September afternoon, you are staring at your parked Aircraft; your mind goes back, with a tons of nostalgic memories, to the glorious day of its delivery: depending on the use, you might have admired it for its unrivaled performances, cargo capability, luxurious interiors, or its incredible efficiency.
No doubts, aircrafts are a technological marvel, but as any other thing sold on this earth, the obsolescence is just around the corner, for many reasons.
Aircraft Manufacturers can afford on a wide set of dealership contracts with OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturer), everyone around them is concentrated on stringent schedules able to support the final assembly lines and avoid penalties, in a dramatic effort for on-time delivery.
But what happens after the Aircraft delivery?
You normally struggle, as any other Operator, with downtime for scheduled maintenance, AOGs (Aircraft on Ground), rising operating costs, spare parts availability and other similar amenities; regarding the Aircraft components, your unbelievable, state-of-the-art avionics, just to make an easy example, gets older day by day, and after... let’s say, 20 years of successful operation, shortages on spare parts become a big problem: your Aircraft Manufacturer does not show stock anymore for your old displays and instruments, and it’s easy for him to forward your requirements to the OEMs. Here you discover a stunning LT (Lead-Time, the amount of time needed to fulfill a purchase order) of months or even years to get a new equipment, at double the original list price.
STCs (Supplemental Type Certificate, in few words an Aircraft’s original design modification, approved by EASA, FAA or both) to renew your avionics might be not available, could be not economical for older Aircrafts, and always require a downtime for installation.
This is obsolescence: your avionics, to continue with the above example, is still capable of let you fly all around the world without limits, but since OEMs and Aircraft Manufacturers are concentrating their financial and engineering efforts on new equipments for newer aircrafts, they have issues supporting older platforms, basically because this is not economic; this happens in Aviation as in any other market, at different speeds, depending on the product lifecycle, its cost and market demand.
For some Companies, obsolescence is the dark side of the strategy for being competitive and attractive, and this goes beyond the so called planned-obsolescence; becomes what I personally call Obsole-Science, which to me represents a further step, more a commercial philosophy than a structured plan, to induce the Customer to make a decision, either to sell or scrap a product in a limited timeframe, to guarantee bigger market shares for newer equipments.
Good thing for everyone, that DIY (Do-It-Yourself) is not a common practice in Aviation: you are not allowed to do troubleshooting on an Avionic unit, so the common solution, having a structured Supply Chain team, is to check for used parts on the market.
Or to sell your Aircraft, hopefully at a fair price, to opt for buying a new one.
Think what you wish, but obsolescence rhymes with technology, more and more and in any field, it’s maybe difficult to accept...but there we may have a solution.
Horix Aerospace can evaluate your Aircraft and, simultaneously, estimate the value of its dismantled parts, to help you get more value from your old-fashioned Aircraft. Check out our Horix Trust Dismantling Program White Paper to get more information.
Pledged undying love to your Aircraft, but still in need of spare parts? We keep-up the fight against Obsole-Science, helping you to fly again and again! Check out today for availability, we may have what you need, at the best conditions.
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