A significant supporting element of the new international airport in Doha, the Qatar Airways Aircraft Maintenance Facility takes aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul to an almost unprecedented scale. Intended to house and maintain the world’s largest passenger aircraft, it was conceived to be one of the biggest facilities of its kind located in one of the most unforgiving climates.
As the design arm of a multinational design-build team, we worked closely with the client and contractor to develop a highly functional facility that serves the demands of the numerous technical processes it houses, supports a complex infrastructure, and overcomes the challenges of its physical environment.
The main structure of the MRO complex is one of the largest in the world at approximately 162,000 square meters. This four-story structure houses Qatar Airways’ line and heavy maintenance operations, including two aircraft hangars, staffing, parts logistics and training facilities.
The fully air-conditioned hangar portion can accommodate twelve aircraft simultaneously, including five A380s. 32-meter-high doors open to the hangars, allowing up to 150 meters of clear opening. To prevent overheating from prolonged exposure to the brutal exterior environment, we designed an HVAC system capable of returning the hangar temperature to 26 degrees C within 60 minutes of a door opening.
Additional program components include technical and administrative office areas, workshops, prayer spaces and other support areas. Our design incorporates daylighting methods to create brighter workspaces for the nearly 1,000 team members working at the complex while reducing lighting energy loads. The complex also includes a central utility plant and a hazardous goods building.
We delivered a high-performing facility that, despite its size and complexity, operates efficiently and allows all who work there, from maintenance technicians to administrative staff, to do their jobs well.