Aircraft Lease Transition – Capability review

In aircraft leasing, operators may modify and then remove these modifications within the same lease period. During a mid-lease inspection, lessors evaluate modifications and aircraft capabilities through a physical inspection. The findings are reviewed in the Technical Specs at the Pre-Redelivery Meeting (PRM) to ensure compliance with redelivery conditions and the documentation of modifications performed and deactivated during the lease.

Key aircraft capabilities and modifications are reviewed for compliance with various standards and requirements including the following examples:

RVSM (Reduced Vertical Separation Minima): Ensures safe aircraft operation with reduced vertical separation, typically between flight levels FL290-FL410. Compliance involves operational systems and registration with Regional Monitoring Agencies (RMA).

MNPS (Minimum Navigation Performance Specification): A standard ensuring aircraft can maintain a defined separation in certain flight levels and areas, crucial for accurate navigation and safe separation between aircraft.

ADS-B (Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast): A system broadcasting aircraft identity, position, and other information, crucial for air traffic control and safety.

RNP (Required Navigation Performance): This performance-based navigation standard allows aircraft to navigate between locations on a 3-dimensional plan.

Autoland Capability: Involves systems allowing aircraft to automatically complete landing and sometimes rollout, with various category capabilities.

ETOPS (Extended Range Twin-engine Operations) / EDTO (Extended Diversion Time Operations): Governs twin-engine aircraft operation relative to the proximity of an airport, affecting aircraft reliability and operational systems.

FANS (Future Air Navigation System): Communication between Air Traffic Control and aircraft, with different standards requiring compliance statements.

VHF Immunity: Protects VOR (VHF Omnidirectional Range) and ILS (Instrument Landing Systems), required in some states.

8.33kHz Spacing: A communication requirement in many countries for radio systems.

TCAS (Traffic Collision Avoidance System): Prevents mid-air collisions, operating in modes like TA/RA (Traffic Advisory / Resolution Advisory).

Maintenance records, like task cards or work orders, should reflect these capabilities and compliance, especially for operations like ETOPS. Compliance reports are critical, detailing the aircraft’s adherence to these standards. These considerations are fundamental in ensuring that aircraft, upon lease return, meet the required operational capabilities and regulatory standards.

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