Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
Entertaiment | By Minnie Bishop

Following engine woes, IndiGo grounds A320 neo aircrafts on DGCA instructions

Following engine woes, IndiGo grounds A320 neo aircrafts on DGCA instructions

About 30 percent of the 113 Pratt-powered A320neos in operation worldwide are equipped with either one or two of the flawed engines, Airbus said Monday in an emailed response to questions from Bloomberg News. "A320neo deliveries will be very skewed to the second half, and therefore the results through the first half are looking rather shabby in terms of Ebit and cash flow", he said, referring to Airbus earnings before interest and taxes.

Last Friday, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued an emergency directive following several occurrences of engine failure reported on A320neos.

The United Technologies aero-engine unit said it is evaluating the impact of findings last week relating to a knife edge seal on the high pressure compressor aft hub on a limited number of the geared turbofan engines. "The current population of impacted engines is 43 engines installed on 32 aircraft, of which 21 aircraft have one engine with the modified configuration, and 11 aircraft have two engines with that configuration".

Neither the aircraft manufacturer nor the agency disclosed what airlines are operating aircraft with affected engines.

This has prompted many airlines including largest operator of the type, Indigo and GoAir to ground their fleet indefinitely.

The DGCA official had said IndiGo has three such aircraft, adding that the latest issue is different from the problems experienced by IndiGo's A320 neos earlier and those have been addressed.

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United States officials added that the Russian government had lodged no complaint about its citizens being killed . If confirmed, the news from Tuesday could further inflame tensions between Russian Federation and the US.

In addition, it said it's working to assess an industrial and delivery plan to minimize customer disruption.

Following this problem, IndiGo has already grounded three A320 neo planes that are powered by P&W engines.

Pratt & Whitney had no immediate comment on the latest Airbus decision. But Airbus has still parked around 30 otherwise completed aircraft at its manufacturing sites in Toulouse and Hamburg awaiting engines. "We look forward to adding the GTF-powered A320neo and A321neo to our fleet".

The P&W Purepower GTF engines while key to the improved efficiency of these aircraft, had a long string of problems during testing and in service.

Analyst Nicholas Heymann of William Blair & Co. said in a note to clients that "there was growing reason to believe that the product deficiencies as well as the supply chain production ramp challenges that had affected (the engine) over the past 15 to 18 months had been resolved".

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