Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) for Aircraft Sustainment and Support for FRC Southwest – Phase IV

Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) for Aircraft Sustainment and Support for FRC Southwest – Phase IV

NCMS Project #: 140823

Problem:  One of the FRC’s most significant issues is the management of aircraft engineering data. This data consists of 3D CAD data, 2D drawings, and associated information received from the original equipment manufacturer (OEM). The data is received piece-meal and the current processes used were developed to support the management of drawings and are not capable of managing this variety and quantity of data. Because of this, significant time is spent manually mining data by a dedicated group of logisticians and engineers.

Benefit: Industry is challenged with PLM technology in developing assets for the DoD while supporting a large supplier base to manufacturing parts for DoD. This initiative will allow OEMs and DoD to work together on best solutions for integrating value added PLM solutions.

Aside from managing all the engineering, manufacturing and process data to produce the asset, Teamcenter will also manage the as-built and as-delivered configuration of the DoD asset along with the as-maintained structure that is critical for lifecycle sustainment. The PLM solution will become the single source of Bill of Material (BOM) information and deliver the tools to analyze that information to ensure accuracy and completeness for all stakeholders.

Solution/Approach: The project approach will be to build on the substantial work accomplished through the earlier NCMS PLM projects at NAVAIR Fleet Readiness Centers (FRCs):

  • Phase I supported the sustainment technologies for aircraft depot maintenance configuration management of 3D design models for the F-18 structural Engineering Department at FRC Southwest.
  • Phase 2 allowed two additional FRC locations, namely FRC Southeast (Jacksonville, FL) and FRC East (Cherry Point, NC) to interact with the F/A-18 data within the 3MS process via the Teamcenter web-based thin-client.
  • Phase 3 applied the lessons learned from the PLM deployment at FRC Southwest. FRC Southwest had been developing a process and systems that would manage a subset of F/A-18 structural repairs and component reverse engineering data. This process and system was referred to as Manufacturing Model Management System or 3MS. This concept has been applied to the V-22 sustainment program at FRC East as the basis of their configuration management solution.

The Phase IV initiative will demonstrate:

  • Shop Floor Connect to end users (artisans and programmers) on how to use Teamcenter with Shop Floor Connect.
  • Individual workflows for each end user/role.
  • Automated, manual and batch process for Program, (V-22, F-18, etc.) data importing and data associativity.
  • How to define and develop a sustainable security model for future user groups and roles.
  • Full flow of work processing beginning with engineering and ending with completed work package to include dispatching the NC code to the CNC machine for a desired part.

Upon completion, FRC Southwest will share a common PLM backbone with the other FRC locations with similar functionality, tailored to their unique organizational configuration.

Impact on Warfighter:

  • Reduce or eliminate redundant work
  • Increase operational readiness
  • Reduce costs


DoD Participation:

  • S. Navy-Fleet Readiness Center (FRC) Southwest


Industry Participation:

  • Siemens PLM
  • Ellis-NCMS


Technology Focus Area(s):

  • Cost Savings
  • Repair Turn-Around Time
  • Maintenance Avoidance & Reliability
  • Maintenance management improvement
  • Improved readiness