Avionics News June 2020 - 41

poor air circulation, cockpits and cabins are textbook
breeding grounds for germs. But, germs or not, it's not
like we can stop flying. Airplanes are critical to not only
helping domestic and global industries get business back
to normal; they're the lifeblood of what we do every day.
So how do you stay safe and stay in business?
Well, thankfully, there's a lot you can do, and most of
it is not labor intensive. In fact, the CDC has published,
"What Aircraft Maintenance Workers Need to Know
about COVID-19."
Leave your shoes at the door
One of the best ways to keep biological beasties out
of the shop is to stop them before they get in. Duncan
Aviation, one of the largest networks of independent
MROs, has initiated a series of processes and procedures
aimed at doing just that.
As the company's critical resources master specialist
and the man responsible for researching aircraft
disinfection methods, John Simms explained that before
an aircraft comes in a Duncan Aviation hangar, it gets
treated to a five-step disinfection process.
Step one: When the aircraft arrives at a Duncan Aviation
facility, it is marked with a red sign that says, "Do not
enter. A/C has not been disinfected."
"All incoming aircraft are required to be disinfected
prior to our team members entering the aircraft," he
said. "We disinfect the cockpit, cabin and baggage areas.
Special consideration is given to the flight deck.
"Each Duncan Aviation team member involved with
the disinfection process is required to undergo classroom
training in dealing with known pathogens. They are fitted
and trained for respirator use by our safety team. They are
also fitted with goggles, Tyvek suits, and double nitrile
gloves."
Simms stressed that when the aircraft is cleaned, all of
the rags and disposable personal protective equipment are
placed in plastic bags. They are then sealed with duct tape
and disposed of properly.
The final step is once the company's disinfecting team
has completed the process, the aircraft gets a green sign
stating, "Incoming cleaning complete."
While the Tyvek suits may be quite stylish today, asking
the typical avionics technician to suit up before entering a
customer's Bonanza may be a bit much. But some type of

Aircraft Clean Air's system works continuously with the HVAC system of largecabin business jets to electronically produce positive and negative ions, which
attack and kill harmful airborne pathogens and odor-causing microbes.

mask, goggles and nitrile gloves should be standard issue,
especially when the aircraft is first delivered to the shop.
Chemical warfare
After considerable research, Simms and the Duncan
Aviation team selected the AeroClave RDS 3110 fogging
units as their frontline disinfecting weapons of choice.
"The units have a proven track record in high-risk medical
applications and are small and lightweight enough for aircraft
cabin applications up to 5,000 cubic feet," Simms said.
"They can also be operated in an aerosolized application for
hands-free disinfection for cabins, or in smaller areas with a
hand applicator, or a combination of the two.
"Our experience is that the unit applies a fine mist
without leaving any soaking or accumulation of the
solution. The surfaces appear dry after application, so
residue is not a problem."
He went on to explain that the AeroClave units disperse
a hospital-grade disinfectant solution called Vital Oxide,
which carries an EPA-registered category 4 rating.
"Vital Oxide has no harmful byproducts, contains no
VOCs (volatile organic compounds), is non-toxic, nonContinued on following page
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Avionics News June 2020

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