Filling H-60 helicopter readiness shortfalls by streamlining and revising depot level maintenance procedures
Snowden, Timothy M.
Sullivan, Douglas R.
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Recognizing the need to extend aircraft service lives, Naval Air Systems Command developed the Integrated Maintenance Concept (IMC). IMC was seen as an opportunity to integrate tasks over all levels of maintenance and balance the operational, engineering, and fiscal aspects of an aircraft's preventative maintenance program. Implementation of IMC has resulted in several unintended consequences, most importantly degraded readiness. Aircraft rebuild and in-process work required of squadron personnel interrupt maintenance at the squadrons and work stoppages interrupt flow at the depot. The result is wider variability in both processes, increasing inventory at the depot and squadron workloads, degrading operational availability by limiting aircraft inventory and interrupting production at the squadron. The authors built a simulation model using Arena software to test the hypothesis that assigning organizational-level tasks to depot personnel would reduce variability in the process, and thereby decrease cycle times and depot work-in-process inventory. We concluded that implementing our project at a cost of 1.4 million per year would be equivalent to having six additional aircraft, which implies savings of between 3 6 million and 150 million. Additionally, we concluded that the squadron labor freed from working on depot aircraft should result in increased operational readiness levels.
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