SEMMCO delivers engineered solutions to Qantas

Qantas A380 access

SEMMCO delivers engineered solutions to Qantas

Semmco is globally recognised as one of the leading design and engineering companies providing Aircraft Engineering Ground Support Equipment (AEGSE) and safe working access solutions to the maintenance and engineering facilities of the world’s leading airlines.

In mid-2008, with the introduction of the new A380 aircraft to its fleet, Qantas set up its own facilities at Heathrow for routine aircraft maintenance.  Prior to that, these services were provided by BA but with the new, larger aircraft Qantas needed to provide its own tailor-made facilities.  Maintenance facilities for the A380 aircraft became operational in January 2009 and the Heathrow facility now handles all Qantas routine fleet maintenance.

Semmco had previously worked on several projects with Qantas in Australia providing engineered solutions to further embed safe working practices into its global maintenance facilities.  The equipment provided included oxygen and nitrogen trolleys and wheel and brake changers, for hubs in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, so when the Heathrow facility needed to source AEGSE and access steps, it turned to Semmco.  After an in depth product evaluation risk assessment and design review, Semmco delivered  a range of fixed and  variable height access steps, oxygen and nitrogen trolleys, wheel &  brake changers, A380 wheel service carts, fuel bowser  and other engineering support equipment to the Qantas maintenance team at Heathrow airport.  Working at height is a major issue in all airlines and still one of the biggest health and safety risks within the industry and naturally Qantas demands high levels of safety standards, both in design, functionality and user safety.

The variable height steps, used to access a wide number of areas for maintenance on both the airframe and engines, were supplied in height ranges 2.2 - 3.2m and 2.9 - 4.0m.  Qantas is using all these, together with a fixed height step (1.8m) to provide safe access for its engineers during routine maintenance operations.  These steps were specifically customised in order to meet the high safety and quality standards demanded by Qantas.

The working relationship between Semmco and Qantas is where the success of this contract lies.  As well as delivering high quality standards and reliability, Semmco operates  a real partnership approach with its customers, listening and working through various design concepts and then delivering engineered solutions that meet the customer’s needs.  This relationship between Semmco and Qantas has developed over many years, with a number of products. Semmco engineers provide continuous support and are on site on a regular basis speaking to the aircraft maintenance operations managers and line maintenance engineers discussing future requirements or refinements to existing equipment to meet their ever changing operational needs.

David Herring of Qantas explains: “In the maintenance operations team, we are working in a high pressure environment that requires attention to detail and exceptional standards of security and safety.  Working with Semmco provides me with the confidence that we are working with a partner who understands our needs, can deliver products that meet them and enable our people to work efficiently and safely.”

Going forward into 2014 the strong relationship with the engineering and maintenance facility at Heathrow has enabled Semmco to develop further relationships with other parts of the Qantas business in Australia and the company continues to design and manufacture a wide variety of AEGSE for export to the Qantas maintenance facilities and hubs across Australia and other parts of the world.

Once delivered to site, Semmco continues to provide ongoing support and maintenance together with a breakdown and repair service for all its equipment.  The equipment is subject to 6-monthly inspections and Semmco provides specialist re-calibration services to some of the sophisticated equipment found on the oxygen and nitrogen trolleys and the wheel and brake changer units.

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