Title

UAS Maintenance: A Critical Component in Maintaining Airworthiness

Presenter Email

mrusekb@erau.edu

Location

Jim W. Henderson Administration & Welcome Center (Bldg. #602)

Start Date

14-8-2018 2:45 PM

End Date

14-8-2018 3:45 PM

Submission Type

Presentation

Other Topic Area

UAS Maintenance

Keywords

unmanned aircraft systems, maintenance, safety, airworthiness

Abstract

Over the last several decades, the notion of traditional aircraft design has significantly changed. While there are many modern aircraft that resemble earlier models, their components, systems, and overall architecture have evolved, including the introduction of unmanned aircraft systems. Despite the growing consumer attraction to own and operate unmanned aircraft systems, the subsequent safety impact of these aircraft, as well as the ability to financially sustain operations in the long run, are in question; as the demand for unmanned aircraft systems continues to grow, so too will the need for effective maintenance practices. According to current regulations, all operators are required to maintain a state of airworthiness, which stems from proper maintenance and inspection techniques. Financial considerations will become critical as well, as the cost to repair versus replace components may be more advantageous in the long-run. While there are commonalities with manned aircraft, unmanned systems have unique differences which impact maintenance procedures. Current regulations and requirements for UAS maintenance refer only to maintaining airworthiness, with no specific scheduled or unscheduled maintenance practices required. Having a rudimentary understanding of proper maintenance and inspection techniques, however, may be necessary in order to preserve/extend the life of small unmanned systems while minimizing costs. This paper will review current maintenance practices in an effort to identify gaps in current research and regulations pertaining to the effective operation of unmanned aircraft systems provide recommendations for improvement. Recommendations for improvements in these areas will also be discussed.

Comments

Presented during Session 6: Aviation Maintenance

Presenter Biography

Bettina Mrusek earned her Bachelor of Science in Management and MBA from Park University and her PhD in Business Administration from Northcentral University. She is currently pursuing a Master of Science in Aeronautics from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Bettina has been working with Embry-Riddle since 2014. She began as a Veteran’s Affairs Counselor for the Worldwide campus and then transitioned to a full-time faculty member in 2016.

Prior to joining ERAU, Bettina served in the United States Marine Corps for 14 years. She worked as an avionics communication and navigation technician and supervisor for multiple aircraft platforms, including both rotary and fixed-wing. In addition to her job as a technician, Bettina also worked in operations and supervised the Mobile Maintenance Facility program. She has a wide array of knowledge and experience with operations, avionics systems, safety, aircraft maintenance and inspections, general aviation, and management.

View Bettina Mrusek’s Bio Page

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Aug 14th, 2:45 PM Aug 14th, 3:45 PM

UAS Maintenance: A Critical Component in Maintaining Airworthiness

Jim W. Henderson Administration & Welcome Center (Bldg. #602)

Over the last several decades, the notion of traditional aircraft design has significantly changed. While there are many modern aircraft that resemble earlier models, their components, systems, and overall architecture have evolved, including the introduction of unmanned aircraft systems. Despite the growing consumer attraction to own and operate unmanned aircraft systems, the subsequent safety impact of these aircraft, as well as the ability to financially sustain operations in the long run, are in question; as the demand for unmanned aircraft systems continues to grow, so too will the need for effective maintenance practices. According to current regulations, all operators are required to maintain a state of airworthiness, which stems from proper maintenance and inspection techniques. Financial considerations will become critical as well, as the cost to repair versus replace components may be more advantageous in the long-run. While there are commonalities with manned aircraft, unmanned systems have unique differences which impact maintenance procedures. Current regulations and requirements for UAS maintenance refer only to maintaining airworthiness, with no specific scheduled or unscheduled maintenance practices required. Having a rudimentary understanding of proper maintenance and inspection techniques, however, may be necessary in order to preserve/extend the life of small unmanned systems while minimizing costs. This paper will review current maintenance practices in an effort to identify gaps in current research and regulations pertaining to the effective operation of unmanned aircraft systems provide recommendations for improvement. Recommendations for improvements in these areas will also be discussed.