Aircraft Maintenance Technician

In the Evolutionary History of Aviation the Maintenance Technician has been a crucial part of the achievement of many flights, for example the Wright Brothers could not have succeeded in their first and subsequent flights without the intervention of Charles E. Taylor.

Initially in 1901 Taylor had moved to work as a bicycle mechanic for the Wright Cycle Company, however at the request of the Wright Brothers, he ended up designing and building a water-cooled aluminum engine that was adapted to a flying machine, the “Flyer”.

By building this engine in six weeks using only the tools he could find in the bicycle store, Taylor went down in aviation history as the first person to develop and apply the first mechanical skills in the construction and maintenance of aircraft and engines.

On December 17, 1903, Taylor witnessed his invention become a great success when the “Flyer” with Orville Wright at the controls made its first 12-second powered flight at Kitty Hawk.

Since then, Aircraft Maintenance is one of the most significant tasks in the world aviation industry, and the personnel that performs it in the figure of the Aircraft Maintenance Technician must achieve it in an objective, conscious, and efficient way. Aircrafts, like any man-made machinery, must receive special care and be operated in the correct way to fulfill the purpose for which they were built.

For every known model of aircraft designed by a manufacturer there is a purpose to perform a specific job, such as, but not limited to rescue, cargo transport, passenger transport, organ transfer, spraying, search, national defense, spraying, surveillance, or just for the fun of it.

Adequate and timely maintenance of the machinery, equipment, systems and components of the aircraft is essential to achieve Safe and Efficient Flight. On the other hand, inadequate and untimely maintenance has a very high probability of decreasing the level of functionality and reliability of the aircraft which usually results in an Aircraft Accident.

Adequate and effective maintenance can only be performed if the Aircraft Maintenance Technician has the technical quality, the necessary experience, qualifications, skills and appropriate knowledge that allows him to perform his tasks of repair, inspection, modification, and overhaul of an aircraft, its structure, internal systems, components and engines.

In order to be able to exercise the function of Aircraft Maintenance Technician (AMT) in a conscientious, responsible, and legal manner, a person must hold an Aeronautical Personnel License issued by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). The application for this license at any CAA is a process that follows the guidelines set forth in the ICAO Annex 1 standards and recommended methods.

These guidelines are, but do not limit the CAA to require the applicant to have a minimum age, a good state of physical and mental health, have endorsed knowledge in airframe and/or aircraft engine maintenance, prove to have acquired a minimum of experience and be able to demonstrate this knowledge and skills through written and practical tests granted by the authority.

Aircrafts are fine pieces of machinery designed by man from the observation of nature and since Taylor‘s achievement to date they have evolved dramatically, in parallel the personnel who fly and maintain them have been forced to grow not only in skills and knowledge but also in Situational Awareness.

The Operational Safety and efficiency with which a flight can be performed depends on the Aviator Pilot  developing and practicing the technique of flying the aircraft safely and that the Aircraft Maintenance Technician is allowed to perform adequate maintenance.