Software Increases Engine Service Speed and Flexibility
Did you know technical experts can now inspect your engine without being on site? Discover how secure video chat app, Onsight, makes this possibility a reality.
In August, Robert Gordon, a Senior Field Support Representative (FSR) based at P&WC’s field office in Concord, North Carolina, got a call from Eric Knudsen, Senior Aircraft Technician. The customer needed Robert to observe the update of engine electronic controller data plates on four PW306D1 turbofan engines.
The only problem? The engines in question belonged to two Cessna Citation Latitude aircraft located in Wilmington, North Carolina, a town more than a three-hour drive away. Waiting for Robert to reach the customer would delay the update.
Robert immediately thought of Onsight.
“I figured it would be an excellent time-saver,” he recalls.
He suggested the idea to the Eric, who agreed that it made perfect sense. Setting up the virtual visit was simple: Robert sent the app along with a guest invitation. Once the customer had downloaded and accessed it, Robert was able to connect remotely via the lead mechanic’s smartphone and to look on as the data plates were vibropeen engraved.
Eric was very pleased with the outcome.
“I was definitely impressed,” Eric says. “Robert was able to take pictures before and after we engraved the data plates to document the change, and he also took a video during the procedure.”
Besides the travel time that was saved, Eric appreciated the flexibility in scheduling.
“We were able to do the procedure outside of normal business hours, at six or seven o’clock on a Friday evening, with Bob sitting at his laptop. He was basically able to be on site without actually being on site, and it worked very well.”
Onsight is very helpful for both the customer and us. Even if we are both remote, we can still do a session at any point in time to look at engine parts anywhere in the world.
Onsight is an enterprise-grade video chat application with specialized functions and services. Unlike consumer-grade solutions like Skype and Facetime, it’s designed to meet the unique needs of engine technicians.
The software’s capabilities include photos, video, focus, zoom, remote smartphone light control, and bandwidth selection, which enables the video link to be maintained even when the signal is weak. Another advantage is that Onsight offers a secure connection.
If I’m troubleshooting something and I have a question, instead of taking pictures and emailing them to my FSR, I can use Onsight so that he can see the engine at the same time as me. He can talk me through it and manipulate the image and camera any way he needs to. It’s very beneficial for people working with P&WC engines.
REDUCING ENGINE DOWNTIME
As Regional Manager, Field Operations, for South-East Asia and Oceania, P&WC’s Barry Demmert oversees a vast area. Getting from point A to point B is not always simple or fast. For that reason, he is excited about the possibility to provide faster customer service and to increase aircraft availability offered by Onsight.
Barry saw the benefits first-hand this summer, when an aeromedical customer in Brisbane, Australia encountered difficulties returning an aircraft to service.
Tony Hodgkinson, Chief Engineer, Rotary Wing at Queensland Government Air Wing, found some compressor turbine damage and needed P&WC to take a look. But, the quality of the photos he was able to provide wasn’t high enough for P&WC’s Customer Engineering to make a judgment on serviceability.
The regional manager was in Jakarta, and the customer’s FSR was hours away. However, there was a mobile repair technician available nearby who was dispatched to conduct a borescope inspection right away.
Once on site, the mobile repair technician set up an Onsight session, took high-quality images, and sent them to Customer Engineering, who reviewed them and determined that the engine was good to go. Thanks to the time saved by Onsight, there was no delay in returning Tony’s aircraft to service.
Tony was impressed with the ease, speed, and accuracy offered by the software solution.
Onsight proved to be an invaluable tool to communicate at a remote location. The images shared on this network were of excellent quality for technical appraisal.
According to Tony, being able to share real time images and to easily discuss specific details so that issues could be resolved on site, with the full participation of P&WC technical experts, is extremely beneficial.
“This capability improves the confidence of the engineering teams and the operating crew because we know that P&WC experts are easily accessible for dealing with important safety and operational technical matters,” he explains.
Onsight works on any iOS or Android-enabled mobile device with a cellular data or Wi-Fi connection. Talk to your FSR to learn more about it.