Technology is an interesting word. A common definition for technology is “the application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes, especially in industry.” As we begin to come out of the COVID downturn, post pandemic expansion could grow at a more rapid pace of growth than anyone could have anticipated. While aircraft manufacturers and equipment suppliers are constantly making technological advancements, producing newer and more amazing machines to operate continuously, the truth is, airlines cannot adapt quickly enough.
Aircraft and engines are becoming more autonomous, and aircraft systems are being designed to function without depending on the pilot or the technician. We are starting to see headway with electric jet engines strong enough to make worthwhile flights. Aircrafts are being built from lighter and more durable composite materials. Considerable investments have been made in the creation of biofuels, which also would reduce emissions. Airlines and FBO’s are making strides in wifi connectivity both on the ground and in the air. Working wireless connectivity and entertainment have almost become an expectation from customers.
More importantly, they are communicating more data to air carriers and OEMs on their own, and are becoming more reliable and safer because of this. However, with the cost to implement significant upgrades along with the time to implement into an operational fleet, it almost seems the deck is stacked against the air carrier. But is it?