The Ground Handling Blog

Mototok's blog for Hangar Professionals

Written by Mototok on December 2, 2016 // 5:00 PM

Hangar Management: Utilizing Technology for Improvement


A considerable number of MROs and FBOs struggle every year to make the desired profit. At the same time, other companies are getting stronger and stronger, and potential profits are huge. How can you make sure to be one of the companies that thrive?  

MROs and FBOs need to think perfection

To get ahead in the game, MROs and FBOs need to think perfection, and they need to think constant improvement. One single mistake can move customers out of their comfort zone and motivate them to take their business to a competitor. So they simply cannot afford the slightest waste of time or opportunity. Fortunately, there are opportunities for the taking.

Make your hangar a better place and thrive with state of the art technology

Besides strengthening your biggest asset, your staff, developments like app-based ERP systems, 3D printing/additive manufacturing, big data and moving aircraft out the hangar more efficiently are hugely talked-about subjects that can and should be turned to your advantage.

Even a seemingly small detail like voice control technology can make all the difference: in unison with handsfree headsets, they allow engineers to focus on the MRO task ahead, contributing to the quick sign-off for an aircraft while keeping to strict safety regulations.

At cost of an airplane-on-ground delay lasting a couple of hours to be at least $10,000 and as high as $150,000 to an airline operator, every minute counts.

Utilizing state of the art technology

We at Mototok build highly advanced electrical aircraft tugs that come with the quickest ROI of the industry, so we firmly believe in utilizing state of the art technology, proving a point for our clients every day. Don’t hesitate giving us a call when you need a quick brush-up on your options! 

Additive manufacturing: profit from the advances in 3D printing

Use of the technology of additive manufacturing (AM), better known as 3D printing is nothing new in the aircraft industry. In the past it was mostly limited to the production of prototypes but nowadays it is already also common to produce smaller replacement parts. Thus the implementation of AM in the A&D industry has increased heavily over the last few years. In 2013 the A&D sector contributed about 12 percent of AM’s global revenues of $3.1 billion.

As the technology is ever advancing it is likely that in the near future AM will be able to produce bigger components (like e.g. hole aircraft motors), expand multimaterial printing capabilities, use more and cheaper materials and of course improve quality. In less words: AM will become faster, better, cheaper and more flexible.  

Google glasses: How wearable technology can improve your workflow

To many people Google glasses are still funny but not for some of the worldwide leading airlines. A hangar engineer wearing them allows images of the aircraft to be sent to your maintenance specialists for assessment, who then feed any issues they see back to the engineer on the ground. Like the voice control technology mentioned before that is another step towards handsfree maintenance on the hangar and can help to save aircraft-on-ground time considerably.

Another example of an easily to implement wearable application are LEDs that your engineers can wear in their jacket hoodies. They illuminate the hangar and allow the engineers to have both hands free for inspections or maintenance work.   

Make better decisions with data analysis

The workflow on your hangar can also be improved by using the big data that is provided by flight data monitoring. Although FDM is mandatory in Europe (and will also be in the US by 2018) most companies still don’t gather and use the collected data systematically.

But the big data collected during the flight can also help you to speed up the workflow on the ground. “For example, if [a] part needs to be replaced when it lands, the system can send a message and we can have the part waiting and replaced”, explains Dr. Andrew S. Bicos, chief engineer at Boeing Research & Technology, in an interview with, “thereby minimizing the turnaround time.” Implementing such methods don’t have to be expensive: the process can be automated by using cheap quick-access monitors. 

3 tools to avoid damage on the ground

As aircrafts are such a valuable good one thing you don’t want to happen for sure is damaging them. But although conventional maneuvering procedures ask for three people on the ground fatalities and damage happen so regularly that the FAA urged airports to review their driver training programmes in 2015. We offer you 3 ways to prevent both expensive damages to your machines and of course any harm to your personnel.

Tool 1: Plan the placing of the aircrafts on the hangar using software

Programs like the Hangar Planner by One Mile Up help you to plan the optimal placing of the planes in advance. First you draw the outlines of your hangar using easy drawing tools on your computer. The program then allows you to virtually put 2000 different aircraft models on the blueprint. With this method you can easily find the optimized way to use your hangar without wasting expensive space.  

Tool 2: Implement a warning system

Even with the traditional method of ground maneuvering using three people there is a dangerous spot on the aircraft: the tail that is unsupervised during the procedure. Californian aircraft management company Talon Air Inc. found a solution in installing a perimeter warning system to positively prevent damage. Using laser-scan detectors, the system warns pilots and hangar operators when a plane comes within eight feet of the hangar walls while at the same time allowing personnel to move normally within the area.

Tool 3: Use an electrical Mototok tug

A smart way to maximize space, avoid damages or injuries and speed up the parking process is to consider using one of our modern tugs. With a Mototok you can get up to 40 percent more out of your hangar. You don’t have to consider exit ways for the tug itself. Thus you can get every inch out of your parking space. As it is possible to turn a plane on the spot with our high-end electrical tugs accidents through collisions get almost impossible.

Another big advantage of our tugs is that they are very easy to operate: only one person is needed as it is steered by remote control. Also a driver license is not necessary.  


There is a broad variety of processes and technologies that can help you to improve the hangar management and thereby staying ahead of your competitors. App-based ERP systems, 3D printing/additive manufacturing, big data and wearable technologies like Google glasses are some of them. To avoid damages to aircrafts you should consider to use a high-end electrical tug by Mototok. It makes maneuvering on the ground easier, faster, safer and cheaper.


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