Delta TechOps will start offering GE CF34-8 engine overhaul capabilities, says Richard Anderson, chief executive of Delta Air Lines at the MRO Americas conference in Atlanta.
"We've made the decision, and we're in the process of bringing it in-house," Anderson tells Flightglobal.
The Atlanta-based MRO plans to start offering the capability by the first quarter of 2014, says Peter Turner, Delta TechOps' vice-president MRO services on the sidelines of the conference.
Many of the airline's GE CF34-8 engines will be going through a cycle of mid-life engine shop visits this year, which will be outsourced to another provider until the capability is established, says Turner.
Different variants of the CF34-8 power the Bombardier CRJ700, CRJ900 and Embraer 170 and 175 regional jets, which several regional providers use to fly on behalf of Delta Connection.
The airline has not specified which variants of the work it hopes to offer, or whether it will perform the work at its facilities in Atlanta or Minneapolis.
Having the in-house capability for the large regional jet engines will allow Delta Tech Ops to perform more of the engine maintenance on its own fleet as it transitions away from 50-seater jets in favour of larger regional aircraft. It has also initiated discussions with third-party customers for the new overhaul capability, says Turner.