"I would like to congratulate all the staff who work at Avio Aero in any position or capacity, whether blue or white collar workers or executives, for having demonstrated that they possess the technical, performance and moral requirements to be part of the Avio Aero family.
This sense of belonging should be a source of pride for you all and an incentive to redouble your efforts in the future. We are often accustomed to looking ahead to the things we have to do and want to accomplish in the future, but it can be difficult to take a little time out to look back at what we’ve done and the goals we’ve already achieved. I believe that working at Avio Aero, the most important engine manufacturer in Italy with internationally recognized levels of excellence, should be a source of pride for all of you.
Furthermore, you are part of the world of aviation, a privileged elite who have the opportunity to work with today’s turbine engines and turbojets – real jewels of human invention and technology.
Of course the current economic situation makes this a difficult period for all of us, which we will overcome only if we work with professionalism, dedication and passion. We must do everything we can to optimize the resources available, both human and financial, and make sure that nothing is wasted.
I will leave you with the sincere hope that you will be able to constantly improve through hard work and passion, with the pride and awareness that you are part of the privileged world of aviation.”
With these moving words, Brigadier General Liberato Mascagna greeted all the employees at the end of an interview granted exclusively to the Avio Aero magazine and specifically for the format “In Customer’s Shoes”. General Mascagna is currently Head of the 1st Unit of the 2nd Division of the Logistics Command and can boast a long and illustrious career. Since completing his officer training at the Air Force Academy in Pozzuoli, he has held positions of increasing responsibility, firstly at the Directorate General for Aeronautical and Space Weapons and Armaments Construction (COSTARMAEREO), then at the Directorate General for Aeronautical Armaments (ARMAEREO).
He can boast 35 years of experience in the management of complex aeronautical programs and expertise covering technical aspects and engineering (he has a degree in Aeronautical Engineering), numerous models of fighter aircraft (especially AM-Xs), quality and effectiveness of service, and contracts with leading Italian and foreign companies. His opinion is therefore important not only on account of his status as an aviation industry customer but also in view of his exceptional level of expertise. General Mascagna is well known outside Italy and has received the “Merito Santos Dumont” medal from the Minister for the Brazilian Air Force for services and consulting provided to the Fuerça Aerea Brasileira.
We had the honor to meet the General, who explained that the 2nd Division of the Logistics Command, where he is currently Head of the 1st unit, is responsible for ensuring that the various Air Force units receive all the logistics support needed to enable aircraft to fly in complete safety and in accordance with the dictates of the General Staff in terms of annual flight hour requirements. It is a highly complex structure that extends throughout Italy and consisting of central units (technical departments and staff offices in Rome) and outlying units based all over the country (the STDs, or Outlying Technical Services located on the premises of companies that work with the armed forces and report regularly to the command). “This includes for example the 13th STD with which you are very familiar because it is located at the Avio Aero facility in Brindisi.”
The second division therefore makes use of the aircraft maintenance units, which perform technical and maintenance functions at the highest technological levels. “Another example is the 1st aircraft maintenance unit located in Cameri. At this facility, the first unit must provide logistic support to all air force fleets with the exception of the AM-Xs and Tornados, which are the responsibility of the second unit. We also provide logistic support for all the Italian Air Force’s turbine engines and turbines, which is where Avio Aero comes in. This includes engines installed on Tornado and AM-X aircraft, which as I said are the responsibility of the second unit.”
The General has known our company “for a lifetime” and this, together with his high profile as an expert in aviation and in aircraft engines, allows us to understand the point of view of one of Avio Aero’s key customers and of the military corps responsible for defending our country in the air. “The period in which I really had the opportunity to get to know Avio Aero was when I was appointed director of the 9th division responsible for the turboprops. In this capacity I gained familiarity with both the technical and commercial sides of your industry.”
“Overall I can’t complain,” continued the general talking of our performance, which he judges to be “within the average of all the aircraft companies we have had dealings with”.
Addressing more critical issues, he continued: “There have been problems, mainly concerning the supply of contractual parts within the agreed timeframes.” However, “this is not a shortcoming solely of Avio Aero but of all Italian and international companies. We also sign contracts with non-Italian companies and I see that these too display the same kinds of difficulties in meeting our needs.”
“Avio Aero’s activities have provided adequate support and have never given rise to any particularly serious problems. Last year there was a problem in meeting the delivery deadlines for the modules of the RB199 and EJ200 engines. There were severe delays and some modules have still not been delivered. This created major organizational problems, especially for the 1st aircraft maintenance unit. But by drawing on available stocks and spare parts, we managed to pull through and meet the needs of the Armed Forces. While this was undoubtedly a problem, it did give rise to something positive, namely the reaction of the company. When you realized the urgency, you did everything possible to identify the causes immediately”, he said, commenting on a real case.
“It’s important for us to have an Italian partner,” noted Mascagna. “Clearly, the relationship that can be established between an armed forces unit of a given country and a company from the same country involves a greater level of trust than is possible with companies from foreign countries. Suffice it to think of the kind of fleets whose engines Avio Aero is responsible for in terms of their technical aspects, configuration control and maintenance, which include the Eurofighter, the Tornado, the AMX and to some extent also the C130J. But we should also remember that these fleets operate in international theatres and Avio Aero’s ability to provide support to these fleets is obviously a critical factor in terms of our capability to support these missions.
“I expect Avio Aero to expand its area of responsibility in the future, for example by acquiring greater maintenance and technological capabilities and providing support not just for the engines installed on the above-mentioned aircraft but also for other engines installed on other aircraft.”
The full interview with General Mascagna can be found on Colab.