The examples and perspective in this article may not represent a worldwide view of the subject.(December 2010)
Aircraft Maintenance Technician (AMT) is a tradesperson and also refers to a licensed technical qualification for carrying out aircraft maintenance. AMTs inspect and perform or supervise maintenance, preventive maintenance, repairs and alteration of aircraft and aircraft systems.
In the US, for a person who holds a mechanic certificate issued by the Federal Aviation Administration, the rules for certification, and for certificate-holders, are detailed in Subpart D of Part 65 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs), which are part of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations.The US licensed qualification is sometimes referred to by the FAA as the Aviation Maintenance Technician and is commonly referred to as the Airframe and Powerplant (A&P).
In many countries the equivalent license to an AMT is the Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (AME).
The general requirement for eligibility for a mechanic certificate include the following. The candidate must:
The required tests include a set of knowledge tests, followed by a practical test, which includes an oral examination component, and which is administered by a Designated Mechanic Examiner (DME).
A person who fulfills the necessary requirements is issued a mechanic certificate with either an airframe or powerplant rating, or both.These ratings together account for the common practice of referring to mechanics as "A&Ps." Until 1952, instead of the Powerplant rating, an Engine rating was issued, so the abbreviation "A&E" may appear in older documents.
Eligibility for the mechanic tests depends on the applicant's ability to document their knowledge of required subject matter and ability to perform maintenance tasks.The FAA recognizes two ways of demonstrating the needed knowledge and skills: practical experience or completion of a training program at a school certificated under Part 147 of the FARs.
The AMT Society presents the annual Maintenance Skills Competition, which recognizes top AMT teams across all aviation including commercial and military.
Applicants for a mechanic certificate with a single rating—either Airframe or Powerplant—and who base their application on practical experience must demonstrate 18 months of work experience applicable to the chosen rating. Those applying for both ratings must show a total of 30 months of applicable experience.Many military-trained aircraft mechanics are eligible to use their work experience as the basis for an application for a civilian mechanic certificate.
Applicants who attend an aviation maintenance school program certificated under Part 147 study an FAA-approved and supervised curriculum. Those applying for a mechanic certificate with a single rating—either Airframe or Powerplant—study a "general" set of subjects for at least 400 hours, as well as at least 750 hours of material appropriate to the chosen rating, for a total of 1,150 hours. Those who pursue both ratings study the "general" material, as well as the 750 hours for each rating, for a total of at least 1,900 hours.Completion of such a program of study typically requires between 18 and 24 months.
Required areas of study in the "general" curriculum include electricity, technical drawings, weight and balance, hydraulics and pneumatics, ground operation of aircraft, cleaning and corrosion control, basic mathematical calculations, forms and record-keeping, basic physics, maintenance manuals and publications, and applicable federal regulations.Thorough knowledge of FAA rules and regulations (especially with regard to accepted repair/modification procedures) is also expected of A&P mechanics.
Required areas of study in the airframe curriculum include inspection, structures—wood, sheet metal, composite—and fasteners, covering, finishes, welding, assembly and rigging, hydraulics, pneumatics, cabin atmosphere control systems, instrument systems, communication and navigation systems, fuel systems, electrical systems, position and warning systems, ice and rain control systems, and fire protection systems.
Required areas of study in the powerplant curriculum include inspection, reciprocating and turbine engine theory and repair, instrument systems, fire protection systems, electrical systems, lubrication systems, ignition and starting systems, fuel metering systems, fuel systems, induction and airflow systems, cooling systems, exhaust and reverser systems, propellers, unducted fans, and auxiliary power units.
Some AMTs, after at least three years of working in their field, choose to acquire an inspection authorization (IA), which is an additional rating added on to the individual's mechanic certificate. These individuals are allowed to perform annual inspections on aircraft and sign off for return to service on major repairs and alterations on the required block of the FAA form 337. Certification and limitations, including renewal requirements, of mechanics with inspection authorization is contained in 14 CFR Part 65.
The requirements for obtaining an inspection authorization is that the AMT must be licensed for a minimum of three years and actively exercising the rights of an A&P for the two years prior to the date that the IA examination is to be taken.
Renewal of the IA rating must be done every two years (on odd years) by submitting to the FAA a form showing a minimum of activity in which the IA exercised his or her authority. This activity comprises either annual inspections, major repairs, major alterations, or a minimum of 8 hours of FAA approved training. This activity must be accomplished every 12 months even though the renewal period is every 24 months.
There are 180 Maintenance schools in the United States.In 2017 number of students was 18,000. The scholarship for students ranges from $2,500 to $16,000.
In 2019 number of aircraft technicians was 292,002, only 2.4% were women.According to the 2019 report from Boeing North America will need 192,000 new technicians over the next 20 years.
The average annual income of aircraft maintenance personnel is $68,677 in the United States.
Transport Canada identified twelve human factors (known in English as the “Dirty Dozen”) that degrade people’s ability to perform effectively and safely.They were adopted by the aviation industry in order to avoid human errors in aircraft maintenance
Accurately completing the maintenance report without skipping any steps allows the next technician to start work exactly where it was finished. This is especially important when more than one technician is working on the same plane at the same time.
The technician's experience and knowledge cause him to feel overconfident and complacent, which is why routine tasks are performed without proper concentration.
The lack of specific knowledge about servicing different aircraft models can lead to catastrophic results.
It is estimated that 15 percent of maintenance related errors are caused by distractions. Distracted attention may cause the technician to lose sight of a detail that requires attention.
Since the maintenance of an aircraft involves the work of several people and even teams, the lack of communication and overall direction increases the complexity of the work, and disagreements between teams can directly affect the physical integrity of the aircraft.
Fatigue can be both physical and mental. This factor is especially dangerous because until fatigue becomes critical, the person does not realize that he is tired, and his attentiveness is constantly reduced.
Lack of quality resources may prevent the technician from performing the maintenance task in accordance with the engineering documentation.
Some companies use strict schedules to ensure that technicians do their work quickly and efficiently. In most cases, excessive pressure negatively affects the results of work.
Assertiveness is the ability to express feelings, opinions, and needs in a positive and productive manner. The lack of this quality may cause the technician not to report a potential problem.
Working in dark, closed rooms, with a lack of qualitative resources, for a long time, as well as a lot of responsibility are the main stressful factors that cause errors in service.
Failure to recognize all the consequences of your actions and/or lack of foresight may cause maintenance errors.
Unwritten standards and rules adopted by companies that bypass the engineering documentation. Some of them are unsafe or have a negative impact on the work of technicians.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is the largest modern transportation agency and a governmental body of the United States with powers to regulate all aspects of civil aviation in that nation as well as over its surrounding international waters. Its powers include the construction and operation of airports, air traffic management, the certification of personnel and aircraft, and the protection of U.S. assets during the launch or re-entry of commercial space vehicles. Powers over neighboring international waters were delegated to the FAA by authority of the International Civil Aviation Organization.
The Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs) are rules prescribed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) governing all aviation activities in the United States. The FARs are part of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). A wide variety of activities are regulated, such as aircraft design and maintenance, typical airline flights, pilot training activities, hot-air ballooning, lighter-than-air aircraft, man-made structure heights, obstruction lighting and marking, model rocket launches, model aircraft operations, Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) and kite flying. The rules are designed to promote safe aviation, protecting pilots, flight attendants, passengers and the general public from unnecessary risk.
Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology is a private college in East Elmhurst, New York, specialized in aviation and engineering education. It is adjacent to LaGuardia Airport but was founded in Newark, New Jersey in 1932 before moving to New York City in 1940. The college's most recent name change, to honor a founder, was on September 1, 2004.
A private pilot licence (PPL) or, in the United States, a private pilot certificate, is a type of pilot licence that allows the holder to act as pilot in command of an aircraft privately. The licence requirements are determined by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), but implementation varies widely from country to country. According to the ICAO, it is obtained by successfully completing a course with at least 40 hours of flight time, passing seven written exams, completing a solo cross-country flight, and successfully demonstrating flying skills to an examiner during a flight test. In the United States, pilots can be trained under Part 141 of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations, which allows them to apply for their certificate after as few as 35 hours. However, most pilots require 60–70 hours of flight time to complete their training. The minimum age for a student pilot certificate is 14 for balloons and gliders, and 16 for powered flight. The minimum age for a private pilot certificate is 16 for balloons and gliders, and 17 for powered flight. Pilots can begin training at any age and can solo balloons and gliders from age 14, and powered aircraft from age 16.
The airline transport pilot license (ATPL), or in the United States of America, an airline transport pilot (ATP) certificate is the highest level of aircraft pilot certificate. Those certified as airline transport pilots (unconditional) are authorized to act as pilot in command on scheduled air carriers' aircraft under CFR 14 Part 121. In the UK, pilots must hold an ATPL before they can be pilot in command on an aircraft with 9 or more passenger seats.
Pilot licensing or certification refers to permits for operating aircraft. They are issued by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) in each country, establishing that the holder has met a specific set of knowledge and experience requirements. This includes taking a flying test. The certified pilot can then exercise a specific set of privileges in that nation's airspace. Despite attempts to harmonize the requirements between nations, the differences in certification practices and standards from place to place serve to limit full international validity of the national qualifications. In addition, U.S. pilots are certified, not licensed, although the word license is still commonly used informally. Legally, pilot certificates can be revoked by administrative action, whereas licensing requires intervention by the judiciary system.
Pilot certification in the United States is typically required for an individual to act as a pilot-in-command of an aircraft. It is regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), a branch of the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT). A pilot may be certified under 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 61 or 14 CFR Part 141. Pilots may also be certified under 14 CFR Part 107 for commercial drone operations.
A type certificate signifies the airworthiness of a particular category of aircraft, according to its manufacturing design. It confirms that the aircraft of a new type intended for serial production, is in compliance with applicable airworthiness requirements established by the national air law.
Aircraft maintenance checks are periodic inspections that have to be done on all commercial and civil aircraft after a certain amount of time or usage. Military aircraft normally follow specific maintenance programmes which may, or may not, be similar to those of commercial and civil operators.
Aviation High School, official name Aviation Career & Technical Education High School (24Q610), is public high school owned and operated by the New York City Department of Education. Formerly known as the Manhattan School of Aviation Trades (SAT), Aviation High School has operated since 1936.
A parachute rigger is a person who is trained or licensed to pack, maintain or repair parachutes. A rigger is required to understand fabrics, hardware, webbing, regulations, sewing, packing, and other aspects related to the building, packing, repair, and maintenance of parachutes.
A blade inspection method is the practice of monitoring the condition of a blade, such as a helicopter's rotor blade, for deterioration or damage. A common area of focus in the aviation industry has been the detection of cracking, which is commonly associated with fatigue. Automated blade condition monitoring technology has been developed for helicopters and has seen widespread adoption. The technique is routinely mandated by airworthiness authorities for engine inspections. Another commercial sector where such monitoring has become important is electricity generation, particularly on wind farms.
In aviation, airworthiness is the measure of an aircraft's suitability for safe flight. Certification of airworthiness is conferred by a certificate of airworthiness from the state of aircraft registry national aviation authority, and is maintained by performing the required maintenance actions.
Aircraft maintenance is the performance of tasks required to ensure the continuing airworthiness of an aircraft or aircraft part, including overhaul, inspection, replacement, defect rectification, and the embodiment of modifications, compliance with airworthiness directives and repair.
The Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century is a United States federal law, signed on 5 April 2000, seeking to improve airline safety. It is popularly called "AIR 21," and is also known as Public Law 106-181.
The North American Institute of Aviation (NAIA) was a private, FAA Part-141 flight school located in Conway, South Carolina, in the United States. Founded on July 7, 1972 in Hammonton, New Jersey, then later moved to South Carolina in 1978, NAIA specialized in flight and aircraft maintenance training. It has also had a campus in Las Cruces, New Mexico. The school had close connections to North European Aviation Resources (NEAR) of Vigra, Norway, and was for a period of time the ab-initio school of Scandinavian Airlines. The school subsequently commanded an excellent reputation in Northern Europe. NAIA boasted an international student population and graduates work for airlines worldwide. The school concentrated its efforts on FAA Part-141 operations and their European JAR-FCL approved program in cooperation with NEAR, which maintained a representative at the school. NAIA operated out of the Conway-Horry County Airport where it was also the fixed-base operator (FBO).
Aviation Maintenance Technicians (AMT) are an enlisted rating of the United States Coast Guard. They inspect, service, maintain, troubleshoot and repair aircraft engines, auxiliary power units, propellers, rotor systems, power train systems, and associated airframe and systems-specific electrical components. They service, maintain and repair aircraft fuselages; wings; rotor blades; fixed and movable flight control surfaces; and also bleed aircraft air, hydraulic and fuel systems. AMTs fill aircrew positions such as flight engineer, flight mechanic, loadmaster, dropmaster, Aircraft Ground Handling, Flight Deck Handling, sensor-systems operator and basic aircrewman.
An Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (AME), also Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer, is a licensed person who carries out and certifies aircraft maintenance. The license is widespread internationally and is recognised by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). The American FAA recognise the qualification in foreign countries but refer to it as Aviation Maintenance Engineer rather than "Aircraft...".
In Canada an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (AME) is a person who is responsible for signing the maintenance release of certified aircraft and is licensed to do so by the national airworthiness authority, Transport Canada (TC). Their job is to ensure that aircraft are maintained in a safe condition.
Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI) is the medical certification, education, research, and occupational medicine wing of the Office of Aerospace Medicine (AAM) under the auspices of the Federal Aviation Administration Office of Aviation Safety. The Institute's primary goal is to enhance aviation safety.