Submissions open until November 3rd, 2022, at 17:00 (CET).
The challenge consists of three core tasks that require a single integrated solution:
- the efficient and safe removal of dismantled aircraft seats from the aircraft,
- the storage of the seats in or near the hangar without them being in the way, and
- the efficient and safe return of the seats to the aircraft. These tasks are not part of our core business and are a very costly affair. Moreover, this is a problem that affects the whole sector, all over the world.
How to apply: if you would like the opportunity to submit a solution you are developing, or expertise you have in the above area, please contact us to email@example.com for an expression of interest by November 3, 2022 (sign up no later than 5 pm).
Full challenge description:
How can we efficiently and safely remove dismantled aircraft seats from the aircraft, store them in the hangar so as to take up as little space as possible and then return them to the aircraft?
In other words: Can you make the process of switching seats in and out of aircraft safer and more efficient by improving logistics?
Before maintenance on an aircraft can begin, the aircraft must first be completely emptied after it arrives in the hangar. This also involves dismantling, removing and storing seats, before finally replacing them after maintenance. This process is currently inefficient and time-consuming, as well as occasionally leading to unsafe situations. With this challenge, we want to remedy this issue.
The challenge consists of three core tasks that require a single integrated solution: (1) the efficient and safe removal of dismantled aircraft seats from the aircraft, (2) the storage of the seats in or near the hangar without them being in the way, and (3) the efficient and safe return of the seats to the aircraft. These tasks are not part of our core business and are a very costly affair. Moreover, this is a problem that affects the whole sector, all over the world.
What is FOKKER looking for?
Although the challenge consists of several distinct core tasks, these tasks are interlinked. The proposed solution should therefore make removing the aircraft seats from the aircraft, storing the seats in the hangar and returning the seats to the aircraft more efficient, faster and safer.
Although we are looking for a single integrated solution, we invite any party that can offer a partial solution to apply. We believe that multiple parties from different disciplines can collaborate to achieve an integrated solution.
The solution must meet the following criteria (must haves):
(1) The efficient and safe removal of aircraft seats from the aircraft and (3) The efficient and safe return of the seats to the aircraft
- Rather than having employees manually carry down seats via steps, they must be able to hand over the seats to ‘the solution’ directly at the door or on the aircraft. When returning the seats to the aircraft, the seats must be handed over straight to employees at the door or in the aircraft, rather than having them carried up manually by employees.
- The solution must be movable, so that it can be used with multiple aircraft doors.
- The solution must be able to reach different heights, as different types of aircraft have quite different door heights.
- The solution should be quite compact and mobile, so that it can easily and carefully manoeuvre past three aircraft in the hangar. There is not a lot of free space around each aircraft, although there is room for aircraft steps of approx. 4 metres.
(2) Storing the chairs in or near the hangar without them being in the way
- The solution must transport the seats directly to the storage area without first having to set them down next to the aircraft on the hangar floor (for a long time).
- There is plenty of storage space in hangars, which are approximately 20 metres high and 20 metres wide. However, because there can be little clearance between an aircraft’s wings and the wall, storage space is available at approximately 6 metres from the ground, right up to the ceiling (at 20 metres). There is also a ceiling-mounted crane that spans the entire width of the hangar. This equipment cannot be modified and must be taken into account.
- The chair sets are unstable due to their legs. Currently, they are bolted to pallets for storage. The solution must therefore also provide the necessary stability.
- The seats should not be stored on the hangar floor due to due to space limitations.
The following criteria would improve the value of the solution, but are not priorities (nice to haves):
- The solution for removing the aircraft seats from the aircraft and returning them should preferably move as many seats as possible at once for greater speed and efficiency.
- Although it is beyond the scope of this challenge, Fokker would like to simplify the seat logging process.
The solution will be used for Economy Class seats, not for First Class seats. The solution does not need to take into account any aviation-specific laws and regulations, other than the normally applicable (safety) regulations.
The challenge involves handling of large bulk goods. Companies in the logistics sector (e.g. furniture manufacturers) face similar problems and may have already found a solution.
What’s in it for you?
A pilot budget of at least €10,000 will be made available for developing and testing the solution, supplemented by a voucher of up to €10,000. After a successful pilot, an appropriate budget for the further development of the solution will be determined in consultation. We estimate that a well-functioning integrated solution can deliver cost savings of €25,000 – €50,000 per aircraft. On average, we service around 100-150 aircraft per year, so there is plenty of room for investing in a sound solution.
The solution provider will be able to test the solution in a one-hangar pilot. We are happy to work with the solution provider or providers by sharing information, location, facilities and manpower. After successful testing, we plan to implement the solution in the other two hangars on our premises. The next step is to also implement the solution in other Fokker Services Group locations (e.g. in Singapore), presenting tremendous opportunities for upscaling.
Moreover, these opportunities are not limited to our company alone. This is a sector-wide problem that exists all over the world. If we have a solution that works, there is a clear path to other companies. With every aircraft we service, new customers come to visit us. If they encounter a good solution, they will likely recommend it to others. We can also help parties approach industry contacts.
The Wheesbee team from Innovation Engineering Srl is specialized in supporting Open Innovation initiatives by facilitating the matching between problem owners and problem solvers in the framework of a large network of innovative companies.
Contact us to be part of our network with your Open Innovation Challenges.