There can be no compromise on safety when a plane enters a hanger for routine or emergency maintenance. Cranes and lift platforms provide access to technicians safely and efficiently to the plane, from the nose cone to the tail tip and across the entire wingspan. This easy access facilitates them to perform inspections, repair and maintenance activities on the aircraft. These aircraft ranges from the small propeller-driven planes to the largest jet planes flying the skies today.
Several types of universal cranes and platforms are used in the airline industry. Since most aircraft maintenance takes place in a hanger, heavy lifting can be done on in-built universal overhead cranes running on rails inside the hanger.
There are many different types of cranes, including those custom-designed for the aircraft industry. Well-designed overhead cranes are compact and flexible, and they can operate in a variety of environment. Skilled crane operators can move them easily and precisely, with controls panels that allow accurate precise maneuvering of the crane moving quite heavy parts. These cranes have a built-in safety mechanism that restricts them to pick up heavier than specified loads. To warn workers they have amber traffic type rotating lights to ensure personnel safety.
As aircraft are large and heavy structures, often heavy lifting is required to perform repair maintenance on them. Therefore cranes systems play a big role in the maintenance of aircraft all over the world. Cranes are used during maintenance as well as for in-house transport of sub-assemblies, including complete aircraft fuselages.
The transport of fuselage and various aircraft sections especially engines, put quite high demands on both the operators and the crane systems. These are very large, heavy but sensitive components that have to be handled with great care. They have to be moved gently and positioned precisely. Overall the overhead cranes while lifting heavy load provide increased reliability, safety, flexibility, and precision to the aircraft maintenance process.
These high precision cranes often have these characteristics:
For handling of wings, a high-performance tandem operation is required because of their large dimensions. The handling of wings poses a challenge that cannot be met by single hoist unit. Two cranes can be coupled to form a tandem unit and operate by radio control for handling aircraft wings.
In case of out of hanger emergency operations mobile high capacity recovery cranes are required to move a disabled aircraft. Such cranes are used in recovery scenarios that may involve from a small commuter plane to a wide body jumbo jet aircraft.
These cranes are divided into three categories, the largest; Category 3 crane can lift today’s most commonly used large commercial airlines, including the Airbus A380. Cat 1 and Cat 2 cranes may be used for smaller aircraft.de body jumbo jet aircraft.
Such cranes have high safety factor and strict specifications for slings and other components. All cranes are certified for a particular weight and type of aircraft in accordance with the aircraft recovery manuals & IATA recommendations.
These types of cranes are mounted on a truck, which provides excellent mobility. They have a telescopic boom that has several tubes that are fitted inside each other. A hydraulic mechanism extends or retracts the tubes to extend or shorten the boom. They are equipped with outriggers that extend horizontally or vertically and provide a stable base and keep it level when the crane is lifting a heavy load. These types of cranes can be used mostly in the field operations on the tarmac and also sometimes within the maintenance hangar.
The mobile hydraulic scissor lift platform is widely used special equipment for jobs requiring operations at a height. The lifting method uses hydraulic cylinders to push the scissor mechanical structure, which lets the platform rise with stability. Wide work platform and high bearing capacity make the high-altitude operation useful and suitable for multiple people to work at the same time. These platforms have good mobility and are convenient to transport to any location.
Many of these lift platforms are truck mounted. They operate on line power, battery or gasoline engine. They are also equipped with hand pressure pump for power failure operation. An emergency button is provided to stop its motion when the button is pressed in an emergency.
The scissor part of the lift platform is made of high strength rectangular steel tubes which are quite robust and reliable. Overload protection is provided to ensure a safe operation. Due to its design, the lifting platform is quite stable even when it rises to the highest point.
Safety is the prime concern of all lift platforms. They are designed to move maintenance technicians, their tools and materials to ergonomically correct work positions to enhance both worker safety and efficiency. Maintenance tasks are broadly varied and may include inspection, repair, welding, cleaning painting etc.
Because the aircraft industry is unique and often has special requirements for the task being performed and the part being worked on, the platform lift is designed to the specific environment. The first consideration is the overall surface required for personnel, tools, and work aids such as tool cribs, spare parts and any other items that are required for the job. Lifting mechanism beneath the work surface is designed to match the surface and capacity of the platform.
e2b calibration is an ISO/IEC 17025:2017 accredited laboratory. We specialize in cost-effective repair and maintenance services of all types of GSEs. We are registered with ANAB. We are also ANSI/NCSL Z540-1-1994 certified. Please contact e2b calibration for regular preventive and emergency maintenance services for your ground support equipment including all types of platforms, lifts and cranes.
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