What’s that you’re doing, Ms. Roetting?

What’s that you’re doing, Ms. Roetting?
© Gregor Schläger/LH Technik

Nikola Roetting, 44,

Aircraft mechanic

has been working with Lufthansa Technik in Hamburg for eleven years


“I’m repairing an Airbus A340 sidestick and right now, attaching a new transducer. Its job is to translate the signals sent by the stick so that the board computer understands them. The old transducer was faulty, so some of my specialist coworkers are now repairing it. It will later be used in another sidestick. If a sidestick is in need of repair, in many cases, it’s down to the transducer, but I also take regular care of the springs (they have to be cleaned) and the mufflers (where I top up the hydraulic fluid). I also replace porous cable conduits and put new contacts into faulty buttons. It takes me up to 22 hours to repair a sidestick, and if the bearings are damaged, it could even be 30 hours. Interestingly, although a sidestick like this one looks like a computer joystick, it is, of course, far more complex, more robust and quite a bit more expensive. The list price is 161  000 euros.”