When designing a warehouse storage system, it is important that it meets the full operational needs of the business taking into account multiple factors including pallet capacity and mechanical handling equipment compatibility. However when Monarch Aircraft Engineering Ltd opened their new hangar in Birmingham they wanted an installation that also emulated the quality of their award winning service.

Monarch-016Monarch Aircraft Engineering Ltd (MAEL) is the independent aircraft maintenance provider and division of The Monarch Group. It has recently opened a brand new, multi-million pound 110,000 sq/ft state-of-the-art facility in Birmingham to complement its operations at London Gatwick, London Luton and Manchester Airports.

To support its maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services it required an in-hangar racking system for aircraft parts and a versatile bonded store installation for varying parts and supplies. SEC Storage was tasked with designing a storage solution that not only met MAEL’s operational needs but emulated the quality of the facility and work that the company provides.

The in-hangar pallet racking would need to fit within the perimeter bracing, potentially losing pallet capacity. SEC Storage discovered that by building the racking around the bracing and cutting the decking to suit, a greater pallet capacity could be achieved utilising space above and below the brace.

MAEL also had the requirement to create uninterrupted work stations below the racking. It was important there was no central frame therefore a bespoke 5950mm beam was specified, along with restraining bars to prevent the beam from splaying under load.

Furthermore, a number of the materials to be stored were sensitive aircraft parts. A unique yet simple solution was to provide a carpet overlay to the standard chipboard decking. This would enable the maintenance engineers to retrieve the parts without causing damage.

The bonded store would utilise an articulated forklift truck pallet racking configuration. This provided MAEL with the flexibility of a forklift that could be used in the warehouse and outside whilst reducing ongoing operating costs and maximising capacity accommodating the ever increasing aircraft parts inventory.

To overcome the need for storing and retrieving non-palletised materials, various solutions were employed including D-ring dividers for storing aircraft wheels and steel mesh decking for heavier handpicked items. When MAEL highlighted the need to store chemicals within the racking, SEC Storage set about specifying a custom drip tray solution to prevent cross contamination.

When addressing the need to fully represent the MAEL offering, SEC Storage suggested during the design process to have all beams powder coated in the MAEL corporate RAL purple. All beams, including those in the bonded store, were specified in MAEL purple and was the final aspect of the bespoke installation.

The new hangar was featured on BBC Breakfast News with Hannah Davies of the Aircraft Technology Engineering & Maintenance Magazine commenting that she “loved the purple beams” during the official opening ceremony.

The Storage Equipment Centre Ltd

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