Avionics News January 2017 - 32
What's your plan for returning an
airplane on ground to the sky?
S T O R Y
S C O T T
S P A N G L E R
n the pantheon of aeronautical acronyms and
abbreviations, the one that owners of aircraft most
hate is AOG. Spelled out, it stands for Airplane On
Ground, and it means that some component essential
for an aircraft's legal and practical airworthiness is not
reliably performing its intended mission. On Part 23
aircraft, it could be a transponder or, like its Part 25
cousins, an autopilot. And if either of them is equipped
with glass, it could be anything from an air data computer
to exhausted batteries in the flight management system.
In any case, an AOG situation is universally
frustrating and expensive, with the latter even more so
when the airplane works for a living by transporting
passengers or cargo. How an avionics repair station
addresses the situation when an AOG arrives at its
hangar door determines, in part, the level and degree
of frustration and expense.
Time and money are intimately related in every
AOG situation, so troubleshooting the problem to
determine the specific component involved is usually
the first step. But before a technician gets hands on, a
shop must honestly assess - and admit to the customer
- its collective technical knowledge and experience.
"We know our limitations," said Jim Prince of
Peninsula Avionics. The 10-man shop in Miami,
Florida, predominately serves Part 23 aircraft, "and if I
have an AOG with an air data computer, we could task