LONDON – Aircraft engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce (RR) has released a statement regarding the affected Trent 1000 engines on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, following findings of hairline fractures that has forced the manufacturer to ground all planes until inspections and repairs are made.
The release notes that RR has solved an issue regarding the intermediate pressure compressor (IPC) in a significant number of Trent 1000 engines, known as Package C engines.
They have also continued tests on their engines to further understand the cause of such issues since the company responded to the initial problem on May 30.
BREAKING: Rolls Royce has released the following statement regarding the affected Trent 1000 Engines on their 787 Dreamliner aircraft. See the picture attached for more information! #AvGeek pic.twitter.com/ML7dmbdLFV
— James Field (@AvGeekJames) June 11, 2018
Rolls-Royce has noticed that after extensive testing, the same issue with the IPC was found on their Package B engines. The manufacturer has therefore agreed with the authorities, as well as with Boeing, to carry out inspections on all Package B engines.
New Airworthiness Directive Coming
Rolls-Royce also said that that the inspections will be supported by authorities like EASA through an Airworthiness Directive (AD) that will be published in the coming days.
The Package B engines have been in service since 2012 and currently represent around 166 engines that could be affected by this issue, altogether affecting 83 aircraft.
GROUNDED / #Boeing 787 Dreamliners LATAM lined-up at SCL due to @RollsRoyce Trent 1000 problems. Photo taken in Santiago de Chile on June 3rd. 📷 https://t.co/aIbigo5BsP ✈️ #b787 #dreamliner pic.twitter.com/FaoUqI1CUe
— Aeronews (@AeronewsRO) June 5, 2018
The manufacturer also went on to say that they are “committed to eliminating this Intermediate Pressure Compressor durability issue from the Trent 1000 fleet and we have already successfully run a redesigned Package C IPC in a development engine.”
“As a precautionary measure, we have also launched a redesign of the relevant part in the Package B engine as well as in the Trent 1000 TEN engine, where, although currently a young fleet, we have not seen any examples of reduced IPC durability,” said Rolls-Royce.
Trying to “minimize” the situation
Finally, Chris Cholerton, Rolls Royce’s President of Civil Aerospace chipped into the current ongoing issues. “We are working closely with our customers to minimize any operational impact of these inspections and we deeply appreciate their continued co-operation. We remain absolutely committed to eliminating this issue from the Trent 1000 fleet.”
It seems to be that Rolls-Royce is starting to make some progress that they have been wanting to make for a considerable amount of time regarding this issue.
— Alex Macheras (@AlexInAir) February 5, 2018
Now that they have found the issue and they know how to solve it, they can now do the preventive maintenance on the 83 potential aircraft affected, including those that have been grounded for a substantial amount of time and have been costing the airlines money.
It is unclear in the manufacturer’s statement whether compensation will be given to the airlines as some aircraft in Virgin Atlantic’s and Air New Zealand’s fleet have been grounded as a result of such issues. But for now, the main focus is on the MRO side and to get the aircraft back in the air.