Vendor Considerations When Digitizing Aircraft Manuals

June 18th, 2013

Aviation and aerospace are among the industries most impacted by the digital revolution. Think about thumbing through thousands of pages of aircraft maintenance manuals by hand versus a few quick clicks on the iPad. It’s a completely different world for professionals managing and maintaining the aircraft when it comes to productivity, convenience and efficiency.


One of the areas where we see the greatest document conversion needs today is with companies that buy and sell aircraft, such as commercial jets or privately owned aircraft. Often, the planes purchased are accompanied by a large stack of physical manuals that need to be converted before they’re put back up for sale. According to V-Log Digital Records Management, 30% of the value of a particular aircraft depends on the condition and comprehensiveness of the aircraft’s records. And not only is the aircraft value a factor, but complete, accurate and up-to-date documentation is a requirement of the FAA. Conversion seems like a no brainer!


Here’s a look at what aircraft owners need to be aware of when selecting a vendor for a scanning project:


  • Scanner Technology: Aircraft manuals often require multiple types of scanners to be fully digitized. A standard paper scanner is great for color or gray scale documents that can be fed quickly, while a flatbed feeder is necessary for books that cannot be taken apart. A large-format scanner may also be required for large or odd-sized engineering drawings.
  • Quality Checks: Data vendors need a quality check process in place that utilizes human verification and gray scale scan to ensure the digitized documents are readable, complete and easy to review.
  • Data Delivery: Each aircraft company has different requirements for data output. Vendors need the ability to deliver digitized data in standard or proprietary formats.
  • Updates: One of the greatest advantages of digitized aircraft manuals is the ease of incorporating updates. Vendors need to have the ability to quickly and easily incorporate new documentation into proprietary structures.


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