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Wednesday, September 1, 2004

Lubricants

Porta-Lube Brings Oil to the Engines

A challenge for any maintenance organization is delivery of fluids such as oil and hydraulic fluid to the aircraft, plus billing for the correct amounts of fluids used during maintenance. Typically, fluids are stored in cans, bottles, or drums. Technicians have to pump the needed amount of fluid into some kind of jug for transport to the engine or hydraulic reservoir, or use individual bottles or cans to service a system. This can be wasteful, with extra lubricants consigned to a waste barrel or sometimes spilled on the floor.

Mobile Fluid Delivery Systems, a division of Thermatech Systems, has developed a simpler method, a portable fluid-dispensing and tracking system called the Porta-Lube Cart. The Cart can hold up to four fluids, each in 20-gallon tanks, and rolls right up to the aircraft. A single compressed air hose powers the Porta-Lube system, and each fluid uses a nozzle that dispenses precise amounts. For hard-to-reach items like engines mounted high on a fuselage, the Porta-Lube hose unreels to allow dispensing high off the ground.

All dispensed fluids are electronically tracked, and this information is sent wirelessly to an accounting computer for billing and reordering purposes. The Porta-Lube system can be leased, which costs about $400 per month, according to Thermatech. Phone: 303-773-9129, www.thermatechsystems.com.

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