A recent survey by a leading global consultancy firm estimated that, of 1,400 global business leaders, 84 % confidently asserted that they could create new income streams from the IIoT. However, 73% still do not have any concrete plans to do so and are trying to develop a comprehensive strategy.

A universe of intelligent products, processes and services with smart devices to connect, gather, and also share massive amounts of data with one another, is defined as the Internet of Things (IoT). A process that facilitates the creation of new functionalities, products, and services thereby making provision for better revenue streams, transform business models, drive measurably better outcomes for customers for every sector.

Greater visibility, efficient data utilization, and steady integration of underlying systems that IoT delivers has its positive affect on the aviation industry too. Within aerospace, IoT has the potential for operational improvements in areas of aircraft performance, air traffic control and even maintenance schedules, which leads to greater customer satisfaction. It is also responsible for improving supply chain management, giving massive amounts of data and insights into the performance of aircraft function.

The Competitive Thrust

Globalization and the continuous market changes are leading aerospace companies to constantly seek new ways of working and reducing their design and manufacturing costs along with delivery lead times. This is resulting in a profound transformation of the entire aerospace supply chain.

Improved on-time delivery, strategic sourcing initiatives, and minimized procurement costs account for as much as two-thirds of the bill of material (BOM) cost for aerospace and defense companies. Hence, supplier quality and delivery performance have a crucial impact on financial results.

Organizations, thereby need to monitor global supply chains and manage supplier performance issues with corrective audit process and assessment of new and prospective suppliers. Resolving material shortages and implying nonconformance strategies save you millions by optimizing the current supplier network and identify new ones along with the adoption of digital technologies.

The Pace of Progress with IoT

According to Aviation Week Network, the aero industry relies on IoT more and more each year, specifically with the massive amount of data collected from every flight. The Aero MRO’s utilize this data to efficiently pin down part malfunctions and also identify areas in need of routine maintenance. Predictive Analysis also plays a significant role in allowing MRO’s to identify future malfunctions before they occur. Now the question is; How does such a humungous collection of data reduce aviation supply chain costs?

When it comes to the functionality of IoT; the Aviation suppliers can utilize IoT to track part usage and performance to ensure proper stock levels. Hence, there would be less surplus for distributors and also an end to out-of-stock parts for customers. Suppliers now move at a rapid pace with progress to have full knowledge of the lifespan of an item, be forewarned of a system reaching the end of its lifespan and even have stocks delivered before airlines find themselves in necessity.

Apart from this Inbound Logistics survey proves that use of IoT through Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) sensors is highly useful to aviation supply chain management in six main areas:

  1. Accurate Inventory Counts:
    Through the use of RFIDs, both parts and product levels can be easily traced down to specific warehouse locations. Hence, less or almost no misplaced inventory, out of stock parts, and reduction in wasted labor hours. Such measured solutions also ensure delivery of assets at optimum inventory cost utilizing, asset monitoring and predictive maintenance of products.
  2. Real-time tracking of products and Asset Tracking:
    RFIDs combined with the GPS system allows products to be tracked effectively. Suppliers update purchasers with the correct locations and delivery times and circumvent potential delays (weather conditions) before they occur.
  3. Monitoring of part after installation:
    These sensors are strong enough to permit suppliers to monitor parts, repairs, and malfunctions. Suppliers can track expected lifespans and get new parts delivered efficiently before the request for requirement lands up. Therefore, less downtime for airlines and balanced flow of customers for supply chains.
  4. New Product Launch and Product Transition
    The development of new products and transition parts can be done quickly with an IoT set-up.
  5. Better Supply Chain Visibility
    IoT applications can help monitor supplier delivery and quality performance, expedite critical parts, and resolve delivery and quality issues.
  6. Product Cost Saving
    IoT delivers suppliers with better value engineering, support negotiation, and managed spending functionalities.

The rate at which aviation suppliers are progressing with the myriad features of IoT; soon the scenario will embrace the high return on investments for aviation supply chain, which can be easily identified and measured.

A Quest to Seize the Opportunity with IoT

When it comes to supply chain management, leveraging deep expertise not only in procurement and materials management, but also in product design, manufacturing engineering, quality assurance, and program management is necessary.

With today’s aerospace supply chain constraints, the ability to juggle both reactive and proactive solutions is imperative. Quest’s 20 years of experience with the world’s leading airframe and aircraft component manufacturers provide solutions to the everyday challenges in design, production, customer support, and compliance.

Our experts give the visibility to your supply chain needs, provides resources to enable rapid recovery, Delivery Analysis & Disruption Identification, on-site Validation & Verification, Reporting & Escalation, corrective action identification and the ARC tool to prevent reoccurring problems.

Written by Quest Global

on 20 Jul 2018