In line with the UK Defence Industrial Strategy (DIS) and more recent MoD initiatives there has been a significant move to allow industry to conduct maintenance on defence aircraft. Whilst industry has been involved in maintenance on military aircraft for many years, new availability and future capability contracts now seek to increase industry's participation.
In order that new and future contracts can realise their projected potential, regulatory arrangements used within the MoD will be based upon best practice in the civil model.
Error management systems are rapidly becoming an integral part of civil aviation maintenance, required within the EASA Part 145 Framework, and CAA Airworthiness Procedures and such systems are being introduced within Defence. The RAF are developing and implementing a maintenance focussed system; a position supported by the Haddon-Cave review. It is expected that this growth will result in a regulatory requirement across Defence for each Command to have a formal Error Management System (EMS).
The integrated nature of operations requires a common approach to Human Factors related incidents across both the Operator and Maintainer communities which will offer many potential benefits:-
- Ability to reduce the probability of a major accident,
- Co-ordination of a coherent Just Culture,
- More detailed awareness of risks and their causal factors,
- Delivery of a powerful risk management tool.
- Improved operational effectiveness.
- Greater awareness of errors and error provoking conditions, including the ability to predict significant hazards that would impact aircraft serviceability.
- Greater efficiency and reduced operating costs
Baines Simmons unique expertise in civil and defence aviation safety & airworthiness has proven to be an invaluable asset to design and implement many of these changes.
MAOS sets out a number of requirements to industry that an organisation must meet in order that an approval can be given. Unlike existing MoD regulations which are often perceived as prescriptive, MAOS allows an organisation to choose how they meet these requirements. It follows the basic principles of the civil system and enables the adoption of best practice from both systems.
MAOS should not impose any significant additional requirements on an organisation that is providing its services to the MoD. However, what it does is to define a standard against which an organisation must attain accreditation approval. It will assure that an organisation is capable of carrying out the tasks it proposes in its exposition and has underpinning processes and procedures in place. It should also assist the relevant IPT in their airworthiness assurance activities.
MAOS - industry partnering and long term service provision
Baines Simmons has been working with the UK MoD as a preferred partner to provide support with the development and implementation of MAOS. The Maintenance Approved Organisation Scheme (MAOS) is a means by which the MOD can assess the competence of organisations wishing to provide continuing airworthiness support services for military registered aircraft. It is a joint MoD and industry venture that has developed a regulatory framework in order to enable industry partnering arrangements and long-term service provision. The regulatory framework has been based on the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) model as specified in EC Regulation 2042/2003.
The Defence Standard allows the following approvals to be granted:
- Organisations involved in the maintenance of military registered aircraft or components intended to be fitted to military registered aircraft shall be approved in accordance with the provisions of Mil Part 145.
- Organisations carrying out airworthiness management tasks shall be approved in accordance with the provisions of Mil Part M (sub Part G).
- Organisations involved in the training of certifying staff shall be approved in accordance with Mil Part 147.