AVIATAR: Innovative MRO Management via App

AVIATAR’s digital world map puts Lufthansa Technik’s aircraft repair events on the screen in real-time. Almost two years after its market launch, ten partners and customers and more than 1000 aircraft are registered on the integrated internet platform for digital maintenance, repair and overhaul products and services (MRO). Nearly 20 apps are now available for users.
Created in 2017, the “Digital Fleet Solutions” business unit of Lufthansa Technik AG was set up to drive forward the company’s digital transformation, create synergies and increase efficiency. The aim is to be prepared for the rapidly growing data volume in aviation. The company expects the number of aircraft to double by 2025. At the MRO Americas in Orlando in April 2017, the unit presented its first development – AVIATAR, an open internet platform for digital MRO products and services for the aviation industry. AVIATAR customers can keep an overview of their fleet on a digital world map. If a plane flashes red, this means a repair, maintenance or overhaul event is imminent. A click on the plane brings all the requested data up on the screen.
Covering all manufacturers and independent of Lufthansa Technik and MRO service provider contracts, AVIATAR started with seven apps. Since then, the number of applications has almost tripled. Airlines, component manufacturers, maintenance providers and leasing companies can manage their fleet operations via the platform. It enables them to analyze and forecast possible aircraft or individual components failures. Moreover they can exchange relevant information across interfaces. AVIATAR offers applications and products both individually, and in the desired app combinations. “Today’s digitized aircraft and their infrastructure are so complex that we have decided to take an integrated approach to digital collaboration across the whole aviation industry,” says Dr Johannes Bussmann, CEO of Lufthansa Technik.

AVIATAR Apps and Their Functions

AVIATAR apps deliver basic information for fleet management and performance monitoring of aircraft – this includes faulty components, notices about necessary partial replacements or imminent maintenance events, amongst other things. Customers can monitor their fleet, gather and analyze data and create maintenance forecasts via the apps. AVIATAR supports customers with the search for testing, repair and overhaul services for specific aircraft component numbers and helps with comparisons. It also simplifies material stock management. Further apps make the tendering process for aircraft overhauls easier and more harmonious, or improve the communication between MRO and the contracting airline during the overhaul. According to Lufthansa Technik, the “ToolNOW” app is the first online platform for tool hire. “APU Health Management” analyzes the auxiliary power unit, while the newest app “Engine Health Management” monitors the engines.
Lufthansa Technik engineers use a “digital twin” – a computer model of a physical engine – to ascertain the cause of specific discrepancies and recommend maintenance and troubleshooting measures.

Platform Model for Networked Collaboration

The more customers work with AVIATAR, the more powerful the “Reliability Benchmarking” app becomes. Airlines can use this app to compare their technical stability – it analyzes their data stored in AVIATAR anonymously and creates a summarized overview of how they compare with other airlines in detail. “We have developed a platform model that offers all participants added value through collaboration,” says Frank Martens, Senior Director Sales, Digital Fleet Solutions. “The applications, some of which are developed in a co-creation process with airline customers, open up new ways to collaborate.”

Text by Marion Frahm
Photos: Lufthansa Technik