20231114 emirates engineering hub
The new engineering hub was announced on the second day of Dubai Airshow. Emirates had already created waves with a signature aircraft order. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Emirates, fresh off a mega aircraft order on the first day of Dubai Airshow, is to spend $950 million on a new engineering facility at Dubai World Central (DWC). Taking up more than 1 million square metres, the hub will be the largest - and 'most advanced of its kind' - to be operated by any airline.

The investment will support Emirates’ aircraft fleet and operating requirements into the 2040s, and will also be a 'centre of excellence for commercial aviation engineering services in the Middle East'. Spare capacity at the facility can - potentially - be offered to other airline operators.

"This significant investment signals our confidence in the future growth of Emirates and the aviation sector," said Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates airline and Group.

"The facility will enable Emirates to be entirely self-sufficient when it comes to maintenance, repairs, overhaul (MRO) and all engineering requirements for our aircraft fleet.

"It gives us operational stability and flexibility, and quality assurance. With the projected growth of the region’s aviation sector, Emirates’ new engineering facility will also play a key role as a centre of excellence, attracting the involvement of global players across the aviation supply chain.

"It’ll create thousands of skilled technical jobs and add value to Dubai’s economy."

Construction work on Phase 1 is expected to begin in 2024 and completed in 2027.

New engineering hub's scope of operations
Emirates’ Dubai World Central engineering facility will be equipped to handle the 'full gamut of specialist aircraft engineering services' - from aircraft checks to bespoke paint jobs, light to heavy maintenance programs, engine repair and testing, to full cabin interior fit-outs and aircraft conversions.

Phase 1 build up

The first phase of the project will deliver 8 maintenance hangars and 1 paint hangar – capable of handling any size of commercial aircraft up to Code F (A380), an engine run-up facility, some 20 support workshops, massive storage facilities, and administration offices.

The existing Emirates Engineering Centre at Dubai International (DXB) will still support the airline’s operations. The new Dubai World Central complex will initially handle 'spillover work and heavy maintenance programmes with longer aircraft ground time'.

"Provisions have been made for further expansion, potentially doubling the capacity in Phase 2, in line with Emirates’ fleet growth and operational requirements," said Ali Mubarak Al Soori, Emirates Group's Executive Vice-President for Facilities, Projects Management & Group Procurement & Supply Chain.

"The new Emirates Engineering complex will also incorporate sustainability into its design, including: the use of green build materials throughout the complex; the installation of solar panels on roofs across the entire campus; and the set-up of recycling systems for oils and wastewater."