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PARIS: Air France-KLM's MRO unit to repair parts for Rolls-Royce

Air France Industries KLM Engineering & Maintenance will repair parts for Rolls-Royce engines beyond the Trent XWB.

A new long-term agreement with the UK manufacturer also allows for the MRO provider to service the engines powering the on-order Airbus A350 fleet of its parent Air France-KLM.

In addition to developing repair and overhaul capabilities for Trent XWBs, the MRO provider will join Rolls-Royce's network of aftermarket partners.

AFI KLM E&M has not previously had overhaul capabilities for Rolls-Royce engines.

It says: "Rolls-Royce will support AFI KLM E&M to implement Trent XWB engine overhaul capability in Paris."

But the maintenance provider adds that it will additionally repair, on Rolls-Royce's behalf, low-pressure compressor shafts and intermediate compressor front stub shafts on Trent 1000s – which power Boeing 787s – and tiled combustion chambers on that engine and the Trent XWB.

Air France-KLM's executive vice-president of engineering and maintenance Anne Brachet indicates that further Trent part-repair capabilities will be developed: "It is not over."

She identifies engine part repair development as a central activity to grow the MRO group's business.

Brachet acknowledges that reaching an agreement with Rolls-Royce "took a couple of years". She says the deal represents "a major milestone for us".

Air France-KLM ordered the A350 and 787 in parallel in 2011, and later selected the General Electric GEnx to power the 787s. Today, the group has orders for 25 A350s and options for a further 25.

Brachet confirms that AFI KLM E&M will be able to support third-party customers' Trent XWB engines. However, she says that the service will be provided "in co-ordination with Rolls-Royce".

She says AFI KLM E&M will establish Trent XWB capabilities "for now" under a TotalCare agreement with Rolls-Royce.

The engine maker's civil aerospace president Eric Schulz states: "We are delighted that Air France-KLM opted for the A350... We welcome them as part of the Rolls-Royce CareNetwork."

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