To drive innovation in the aviation industry, a company must be responsive to changing customer needs, committed to safety and sustainability, and bold enough to launch products faster than their competitors. President and CEO Jon DeLine explains the secrets to BETA Fueling Systems' success.
Jon DeLine: BETA has already shipped 63 hydrant dispensing trucks into Newark and New Jersey airports. The major challenges were to deliver a hydrant truck with digital pressure control and densiometer, and reduce the weight on a gas chassis.
The digital pressure control system saves time by keeping the valves open at full flow when the tanks get filled and back-pressure in the wing builds up.
The densiometer's accurate readings prevent planes from taking off with the wrong amount of fuel. The hydrant fuelling system was designed from aluminium to reduce weight and allow the use of a gas chassis, which can save operators up to $5,000 a year on costly maintenance associated with idling diesel trucks with expensive emissions systems.
BETA is the first company to integrate and deliver the systems mentioned above. In addition to the reliability of its standard equipment, it offers progressive technology such as advanced vision systems to avoid hitting planes, remote diagnostics, in-cab touchscreens for operator training, safety and troubleshooting.
BETA specialises in aircraft-grade aluminium to lighten the load on a chassis, reducing the cost of fleet ownership due to less wear and reduced weight.
It has a strong team committed to getting the basics of reliability, support and delivery right in order to help our customers turn fuel into profit. BETA spends a lot of time uncovering customer needs and understanding root causes of issues to improve products.
The company is involved in IATA and SAE, in addition to other regulatory bodies, to drive progress for customers. Alfons Haar, which is known as one of the strongest R&D and technology companies in the aviation industry, is a partner in BETA's business: it assists with the development of market-leading components and subsystems.
BETA provides core systems with proven reliability, supported by an experienced team. A firm must deliver on current technology before anyone will trust it to deliver new advancements. The industry is slow to adopt new technology; people are cautious, as untested technology could result in costly flight delays. A consistent track record of reliability and support means BETA's customers trust it to deliver advanced technologies. They're confident it will do all the up-front work to minimise their risk.
Its hydrant carts are lightweight, manoeuvrable and flexible around crowded gates. BETA offers options for solar or hydrant power, depending on the amount of sunlight. In addition, it offers longer hose reels to reach odd pit-valve locations and traffic patterns, as well as self-powered movability to serve up to two gates and enough power to accommodate wireless data systems for better fuel reconciliation.
Sustainability is a commitment, much like safety and lean manufacturing. Discipline is required to reduce waste and ensure everyone goes home safely. BETA's processes are robust and use metrics to track improvement against goals.
Some of BETA's new products improve safety and sustainability. For example, its electronics platform consumes very little power to be the safest for use around fuel. This also consumes less energy in operations and reduces waste. The refuelling truck modules are designed to consume less fuel and waste.
Everything is aligned around customers' needs. The team is talented and passionate about continuous improvement. Customers leave the factory amazed by the metrics placed around safety, reliability, support and delivery. They're also impressed by how quickly improvements, or better ways to do things in the field, are launched. Customers report that BETA's support is the best in the industry. It is one of the only manufacturers to make its own vessels, and it is vertically integrated. This enables it to design and build equipment with higher flow rates and improved integration, and maintain rapid responsiveness.