Lufthansa Selects Rival For APU Work

The repairs are related to the auxiliary power unit found on the Boeing 787-9 aircraft (pictured).

Credit: Lufthansa

It’s not often that Lufthansa entrusts maintenance to a big rival in the MRO world, but sometime capabilities determine where work must go.

The airline group, which owns Lufthansa Technik, has contracted Netherlands-based company EPCOR, part of Air France Industries KLM Engineering & Maintenance (AFI KLM E&M), to support the Pratt & Whitney Canada APS5000 auxiliary power units (APU) on its new Boeing 787-9 aircraft.

The APS5000 differs from traditional APU architectures in that it does not have a traditional load compressor, but sports two generators to support the extra electrical demands of the 787. 

Under its new Lufthansa deal, EPCOR will handle all warranty repairs on the APS5000s concerned and provide availability of units when needed.

This may not occur as much as previously, though, as reliability of the APS5000 is said to have improved significantly following several service bulletins over the past few years.

EPCOR is one of only three workshops in the world licensed to overhaul and repair the APS5000, and it claims that 40% of the units in service are supported from its Amsterdam shop.

“EPCOR's track record on this product is very impressive, and we have every confidence in their ability to deliver the high level of service we expect,” stated Binoj Sebastian, senior director of Lufthansa Airline.

EPCOR managing director Dominik Wiener-Silva hopes the maiden deal will lead to more business from Lufthansa.

“We hope that this first collaboration will convince Lufthansa of the excellence and relevance of our APU services, and open the door to a long-term partnership around the APUs of its young and growing 787 fleet,” he said.

However, on other models the two companies will continue to compete.

The Engine Yearbook’s APU Overhaul Directory indicates that EPCOR and Lufthansa Technik offer competing MRO services across four APU types: the APS3200, the APS2300, the GTCP331-350 and the GTCP331-500.

For worldwide listings of every company’s APU capability, as well as global engine overhaul and repair directories, see the  Engine Yearbook 2022.

Alex Derber

Alex Derber, a UK-based aviation journalist, is editor of the Engine Yearbook and a contributor to Aviation Week and Inside MRO.