Paper Example on Aviation Industry Response

Published: 2024-01-05
Paper Example on Aviation Industry Response
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Aviation
Pages: 6
Wordcount: 1405 words
12 min read


Suspected unapproved or counterfeit parts' prevalence in the aviation industry shows the unscrupulous means through which airline companies, manufacturers, repair stations, and aeronautical technicians employ to accrue massive profits. The aerospace sector's complexity facilitates the rampancy of counterfeit components due to the difficulties of detection of the points of entry into the supply chain. There is a need for comprehensive and quality identification and assessment systems to curb the issue in this regard. Most counterfeit products originate from brokers and third parties who do not consider the airworthiness of the components before availing them for sale. Counterfeiting also occurs in the form of falsification of documents, data, and labels. Most aerospace manufacturing companies only focus on meeting their customers' demands, thereby necessitating the adoption of suspected unapproved parts. Every stakeholder within the aviation industry ranging from the manufacturers to regulatory authorities has crucial roles to play in mitigating the issue. The paper offers insight into the current counterfeiting practices and how regulatory bodies have moved to curb them.

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Review of Relevant Literature

Goh (2017) denoted that fake paperwork hallmarks the suspected unapproved parts, especially in the face of the aerospace boom in China. Chinese suppliers were in the spotlight for distributing counterfeit parts, cloned outsourced work, and fake paperwork. Besides, the United States (U.S.'s) regulation agency did not approve the source company as a licensed distributor. Reuters' investigations showed that the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA') reported that 273 counterfeit parts had been retrofitted on an unknown number of wing spoilers belonging to Boeing 777 (Goh, 2017). The installation of the parts occurred under FAA's nose, depicting the level of safety risks that the U.S. airlines exposed air travelers. The phenomenon mounted pressure on regulators and Chinese suppliers on what was known as the rapidly-growing aviation sector. Also, there were increased concerns when Japanese-affiliated Company Kobe Steel reported many instances of data falsification for its copper and aluminum products. The escalated supply of aerospace products to China has led to the emergence of sub-markets that are less regulated and safety workers not working behind the clock to implement safety protocols.

Flight Safety

Besides, the essentiality of flight safety concerns the contemporary aviation world, especially after the 9/11 flight. Newswire reported that the hijacking of the Boeing 19 years ago shed light on how major regulation companies, manufacturers, and quality accreditation companies were pocketing massive profits at the expense of airline crew and passengers' safety. Guberman-PMC reported that most of the manufacturers for the suspected unapproved parts had licenses from top quality control and accreditation companies. Notably, the unsuspected and counterfeit parts had found their way into U.S. defense aircraft equipment. The phenomenon raised the alarm on the potential suspect and poor quality parts that had infiltrated the market despite the existing ISO auditing and registration protocols (Newswire. 2013). The flawed certification process underlies monopoly control disguised under independent entities. The flaws emanate from the visible conflicts of interests among the regulators result in compromised quality to funnel monies from the participating organizations.

Sly also provided a conceptual framework that showed that counterfeit parts had become a disease that needed an urgent remedy. The widespread risks of counterfeit parts affect both civilians and non-civilians in equal measures. For example, the article highlights how similar accidents in 1987 were due to counterfeit parts sold to NATO and the U.S. for 600 helicopters (Sly, 2001). The prevalence of counterfeiting within the aerospace industry has necessitated the FAA to impose measures such as requiring overhauled parts to have approved tags. The tags were meant to denote that they met the required safety standards. However, the FAA did not have provisions for tracking the parts, creating pathways for faking paperwork, and install yellow tags. The rampancy of counterfeit parts emanates from the practice of companies purchasing spare parts from any manufacturers. The problem escalates due to source companies not having sufficient stock or taking longer to deliver the parts. Most of the alternative parts come from suppliers in Third World nations with suboptimal manufacturing practices. However, new hopes for maximum aircraft safety emerge due to increased legal actions for firms culpable in supplying counterfeit products.

Devastating Outcomes

Additionally, Nevison (2009) offered insight into how counterfeit parts had infiltrated the aerospace industry. The devastating outcomes of installing counterfeit parts on aerospace and military components portray the magnitude of the issue. The phenomenon underpins the aviation industry's market changes that give room for substandard-based companies to sell their products. Counterfeited items even include fluid bolts, nuts, rivets, and bolts showing that nothing is safe with the aerospace parts. Counterfeiting extends to integrated circuits, capacitors, composite chemicals, semiconductors, connectors, and titanium. The military is the main victim of counterfeit parts since 1990, which has caused it to opt for commercial manufacturers. The phenomenon has created more room for counterfeit products to penetrate the U.S. regulators. Counterfeiting has massive losses that cost companies approximately 100 billion to 200 billion. For instance, NASA reported that a counterfeit component had driven an aircraft project's costs up by $595 million regarding identification and replacement (Nevison, 2009). The article articulated that defense, space, and aerospace products are more counterfeit-prone due to the entire system's expected longevity. Thus, their parts, materials, and technologies are more prone to obsolescence. The Belize Department of Civil Aviation (BDCA) reported that the installation of counterfeit parts on aircraft also takes the form of technicians not using the ones specified in the illustrated catalog (2020). Besides, the inconsistency of standards for independent manufacturers aids in the evasion of inspection procedures.

In addition, OEMs are under scrutiny in the face of a need for imminent safety changes and the adoption of novel production technologies. Most OEMs are profit-oriented at the expense of the safety of the passengers. Therefore, increased investment in production is inevitable after the declining demand for aero-engines, notably during the COVID-19 pandemic. Companies like Boeing strive to acquire new engines in response to the calls for optimal safety measures related to the prevalence of suspected unapproved parts (Michaels, 2020). The changes spark changes for other firms such as Airbus looking to harness technology-based production opportunities. Notables are electric propulsion and hybrid-electronic technologies that promise to deliver maximal safety for the aircraft. Besides, zero-emission aircraft are increasingly becoming a priority. Transitions from razor blade business frameworks are inevitable due to enabling the manufacture of efficient gas turbines. Remarkable changes are also occurring in down-gauging systems, with most OEMs adopting twin-aisle technologies.

Proper Production Approval

The BDCA (2020) provided insight into how aerospace companies ship counterfeit parts from manufacturers, distributors, and suppliers. The stakeholders do not have the proper production approval to make the parts nor ship them directly. Certification requirements have become unnecessary for the counterfeiters. Besides, safety risks arising from the purchase of parts that have been poorly-maintained, repaired, or overhauled without considering their airworthiness information. The hired persons to maintain and repair are also likely to be unqualified based on statutory requirements. The report made a shocking discovery that most of the suspected unapproved parts come from the U.S. military stock. The military-based "BREAKOUT" program for the Department of Defense (DOD) allows bids for its approved drawings (BDCA, 2020). The program has inherent inadequacies since it does not require the bidders to comply with strict quality controls. Thereby, the bidders are likely to bypass certain FAA requirements, including continuous and periodic examinations and destruction-centered tests. The government has also been in the spotlight for using suboptimal specifications that align with those of the manufacturers, disregarding FAA design stipulations. However, the FAA has beefed up efforts to create public awareness on the potential risks of using counterfeit products for aeronautical parts. Thus, the FAA requires manufacturers to meet requirements related to maintenance and applicable design.


Furthermore, Heavner (2010) articulated the need for aeronautical manufacturing regulations, alluding to potential safety risks they pose. The researcher denoted that suspected unapproved parts led to 174 crashes in the U.S. between 1973 and 1976. The crash contributed to the deaths of 17 peoples and injuries to 39 individuals. Statistical evidence shows that 2% of aeronautical components installed each year are counterfeit, translating to almost 520,000 parts (Heavner, 2010). The number is alarming, and it has called for the attention of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to conduct comprehensive investigations on the sale and the manufacture of the parts. The issue underlies the evasive practices related to the counterfeiting and trademark law in the U.S. Thus, brand owners and aircraft manufacturers are likely to maneuver the trademark regulations, especially those that have counterfeit provisions.

Cite this page

Paper Example on Aviation Industry Response. (2024, Jan 05). Retrieved from

Request Removal

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the SpeedyPaper website, please click below to request its removal:

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism