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Thread: EASA issues EAD for 320NEO - ETOPS suspended, effective immediately

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Default EASA issues EAD for 320NEO - ETOPS suspended, effective immediately

    Can somebody please explain this apparent contradiction:

    Quote Originally Posted by Emergency Airworthiness Directive (EAD) 2018-0041-E
    Several occurrences of engine in-flight shut-down (IFSD) and Rejected Take-Off (RTO) have been reported on certain Airbus A320neo family aeroplanes. While investigation is ongoing to determine the root cause, preliminary findings indicate that the affected engines, which have high pressure compressor aft hub modification embodied from ESN P770450, are more susceptible to IFSD.

    This condition, if not corrected, could lead to dual engine IFSD.[/I]

    EASA imposes following restrictions with the EAD:

    (1) Within 3 flight cycles (FC) from the effective date of this AD, do not operate an aeroplane having two affected engines installed.

    (2) Within 1 FC from the effective date of this AD, for an aeroplane having at least one affected engine(s) installed, ETOPS operations are not allowed.

    (3) Inserting a copy of this AD in the ETOPS Configuration, Maintenance and Procedures (CMP) of concerned aeroplane models and, thereafter, operating that aeroplane on ETOPS accordingly, is acceptable to comply with paragraph (2) of this AD.

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    Member ATLcrew's Avatar
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    It sounds like a way to get the airplane back to maintenance base from an ETOPS destination. Maybe a Frenglish issue, too.

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    Hmm ... are any airlines operating A320s for Mainland<->Hawaii services?

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    BTW, Evan, when someone answers your question, the courteous thing to do is to acknowledge that answer, perhaps even express some sort of gratitude therefor. Since I'm sure that expression of gratitude must have simply slipped your mind, I am, as a courteous person myself, acknowledging your gratitude with a heartfelt "you're welcome".

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    My sincerest apologies. I thought that was a forum comment rather than a definitive answer. I do appreciate it when you have something valuable to contribute, other than just the usual admonitions and sarcasm, so thank you!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    My sincerest apologies. I thought that was a forum comment rather than a definitive answer.
    Doesn't matter, at the very least an acknowledgement would have been appropriate. In general, I don't usually claim to have definitive answers, that seems to be more your realm. Oh, I'm sorry, did that sound like a sarcastic admonishment maybe?

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ATLcrew View Post
    It sounds like a way to get the airplane back to maintenance base from an ETOPS destination. Maybe a Frenglish issue, too.
    You see, that sounds like speculation to me. You are upset that I didn't thank you for speculating??? This forum would become mostly thank you's...

    Again, I do appreciate it when you share your knowledge (even speculative knowledge) rather than your scorn.

    Maybe you could tell us what a CMP is?

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    Maybe you could tell us what a CMP is?
    I can speculate on that:

    Quote Originally Posted by EAD
    ETOPS Configuration, Maintenance and Procedures (CMP)

    --- Judge what is said by the merits of what is said, not by the credentials of who said it. ---
    --- Defend what you say with arguments, not by imposing your credentials ---

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    I can speculate on that:
    Thank you Gabriel!

    But I was hoping for a bit more of a detailed answer. Such as anything pertaining to ferry flights vs revenue flights. The wording of the EAD appears to contradict itself and I'd like to know that it doesn't just leave a loophole to continue operating revenue ETOPS flights under dangerous conditions.

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    I can speculate on that too:

    (2) Within 1 FC from the effective date of this AD, for an aeroplane having at least one affected engine(s) installed, ETOPS operations are not allowed.

    (3) Inserting a copy of this AD in the ETOPS Configuration, Maintenance and Procedures (CMP) of concerned aeroplane models and, thereafter, operating that aeroplane on ETOPS accordingly, is acceptable to comply with paragraph (2) of this AD.

    So, if you insert a copy of this AD in the ETOPS manual, your ETOPS manual will now say "for an aeroplane having at least one affected engine(s) installed, ETOPS operations are not allowed." So if your airplane has 1 or more affected engines, you can't ETOPS. If your airplane has exactly zero affected engines, then you can ETOPS.

    To say it in another words... How do you make the above mandate reach the person operating the airplane (aka captain)? Instead of re-writing part of your manual to include the mandate "ETOPS operations not allowed if one or more engines are the affected ones", you can just insert the AD in the manual. ETOPS operations in this airplane would be allowed if no affected engine is installed (and other requirements in the manual are also met).

    (I said "speculate", ok?)

    --- Judge what is said by the merits of what is said, not by the credentials of who said it. ---
    --- Defend what you say with arguments, not by imposing your credentials ---

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    I can speculate on that too:

    (2) Within 1 FC from the effective date of this AD, for an aeroplane having at least one affected engine(s) installed, ETOPS operations are not allowed.

    (3) Inserting a copy of this AD in the ETOPS Configuration, Maintenance and Procedures (CMP) of concerned aeroplane models and, thereafter, operating that aeroplane on ETOPS accordingly, is acceptable to comply with paragraph (2) of this AD.

    So, if you insert a copy of this AD in the ETOPS manual, your ETOPS manual will now say "for an aeroplane having at least one affected engine(s) installed, ETOPS operations are not allowed." So if your airplane has 1 or more affected engines, you can't ETOPS. If your airplane has exactly zero affected engines, then you can ETOPS.

    To say it in another words... How do you make the above mandate reach the person operating the airplane (aka captain)? Instead of re-writing part of your manual to include the mandate "ETOPS operations not allowed if one or more engines are the affected ones", you can just insert the AD in the manual. ETOPS operations in this airplane would be allowed if no affected engine is installed (and other requirements in the manual are also met).

    (I said "speculate", ok?)
    mmmmmaybe.... I guess what you're saying makes sense. Paragraph 2 is the restriction and paragraph 3 is the means to compliance. But the wording "is acceptable to comply with paragraph (2) of this AD" is pretty broad, maybe just poorly worded. And the wording "concerned aeroplane models" means A320NEO's with at least one affected engine, so no ETOPS in any case. Compliance under ETOPS means first losing the affected engine(s), at which point, why do you need the EAD in the manual?

    If you are right I would think it should read:

    (3) Insert a copy of this AD in the ETOPS Configuration, Maintenance and Procedures (CMP) of concerned aeroplane models and, thereafter, operate that aeroplane on ETOPS accordingly.

    That is assuming 'accordingly' means don't fly ETOPS routes with an affected engine, period.

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Compliance under ETOPS means first losing the affected engine(s), at which point, why do you need the EAD in the manual?
    Yes, your airplane may get an affected engine installed back at any time. The amended ETOPS manual would render this airplane not ETOPS.

    Your version of point (3) would make inserting a copy of the AD the only acceptable method of compliance.
    But you can amend the manual, or remove the ETOPS manual from the airplane altogether (which will make it effectively a non-ETOPS airplane regardless the engines you put on it)

    --- Judge what is said by the merits of what is said, not by the credentials of who said it. ---
    --- Defend what you say with arguments, not by imposing your credentials ---

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    Yes, your airplane may get an affected engine installed back at any time. The amended ETOPS manual would render this airplane not ETOPS.

    Your version of point (3) would make inserting a copy of the AD the only acceptable method of compliance.
    But you can amend the manual, or remove the ETOPS manual from the airplane altogether (which will make it effectively a non-ETOPS airplane regardless the engines you put on it)

    You do know what ETOPS stands for right? The four engine drivers call it, engines turn, or people swim.

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    B-777 OVERWATER ENGINE FAILURE Suggested sequence of events
    1. Crew maintains control of A/C.
    2. Crew handles QRC immediate action items correctly.
    3. Crew agrees upon enroute diversion alternate (SATCOM- DSP)
    4. PF begins off-track maneuver. HDG SEL 90 from track in direction of alternate
    5. Crew turns on all external lights.
    6. PF begins drift down. Call for MCP alt set to VNAV ENG OUT cruise alt. EO speed or 320/.83 whichever is most reasonable considering terrain.
    7. PF ensures MCT, monitors A/C performance, PNF handles comm.
    8. PNF declares emergency with mayday on guard, common and/or HF as appropriate
    9. PNF gives position, Flight ID, Track, Longitude/Latitude and altitude with all calls.
    10. PNF requests clearance to enroute alternate with GP facility or guard relay.
    11. Crew recalls pilots on break to cockpit via PA.
    12. PNF records FMC position in scratch pad to be entered on plotting chart and to be forwarded to dispatch via MFD "MAYDAY" report or SATCOM link.
    13. PNF completes checklist reference items.
    14. PNF builds offset 25NM Pacific/30NM Atlantic (Offset execute or LNAV armed optional HDGSEL may be required if ETOPS alternate behind) Cross tracks below FL 290 Pacific/FL285 Atlantic.
    15. PNF copies clearance to alternate.
    16. Crew proceeds to alternate at 325kts /Mach .83 when able at SE altitude.
    17. PNF communicates with DD, FA's, SAMC and Pax as required.
    18. Crew initiates preparation for ditching and/or evacuation if necessary.
    19. Crew prepares estimates for FIRs or diversion airport.
    20. Crew plots FMC position every 15 minutes on plotting chart on line drawn from initial diversion point to alternate.
    21. Crew reviews ditching procedures if necessary.
    22. Crew requests RCC information via DD if necessary.
    23. Crew briefs approach, evacuation potential, runway exit plan and crew member assignments as necessary.
    * If the EO SPD (slower drift down IAL) is chosen, about 2 minutes will be available for deceleration at altitude on the track before a descent becomes necessary and the initial rate of descent will be very slow with MAX CONT thrust set on the good engine. If 320/.83 is entered, the initial rate of descent will be higher exiting the track.

    B-747 OVERWATER ENGINE FAILURE Suggested sequence of events

    1. Continue to destination
    2. 3 engine approach & landing---no change from 4 engine approach.

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    As a response to BB's last post, I will provide the aircraft manufacturers' and airlines' perspective on this issue:

    $$$$$$$$$$$$ (or €€€€€€€€€€ as the case may be)

    Be alert! America needs more lerts.

    Eric Law

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    Your version of point (3) would make inserting a copy of the AD the only acceptable method of compliance.
    Well, there's still paragraph 1 and 2 to comply with! Paragraph 3 alone, as reworded, would also place the same restrictions as 1 and 2, without exception.

    What I'm saying is that, as it is currently worded, Paragraph three sounds like an alternate means of compliance.

    Yes, your airplane may get an affected engine installed back at any time. The amended ETOPS manual would render this airplane not ETOPS.
    The EAD states:

    The engines from these events are confirmed to have similar damage in the High Pressure Compressor (HPC), specifically a fracture of the knife edges of the rear hub. The investigation of these events is focused on a configuration change incorporated at serial number P770450.
    Why would you allow an operator to remount an engine "which [has] high pressure compressor aft hub modification embodied from ESN P770450" and is thus "more susceptible to IFSD" for reasons that are still under investigation? Hopefully you require them to either shelve that engine until the investigation is resolved or, if possible, remove the modification.

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    Is the A321neo considered part of the "Airbus A320neo family aeroplanes"?

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    Quote Originally Posted by flashcrash View Post
    Is the A321neo considered part of the "Airbus A320neo family aeroplanes"?
    Are you related to our German friend?

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    Why would you allow an operator to remount an engine "which [has] high pressure compressor aft hub modification embodied from ESN P770450" and is thus "more susceptible to IFSD" for reasons that are still under investigation? Hopefully you require them to either shelve that engine until the investigation is resolved or, if possible, remove the modification.
    For the same reason that the EAD is allowing you to keep flying indefinitely an airplane with such an engine (but only one of them, not 2).

    --- Judge what is said by the merits of what is said, not by the credentials of who said it. ---
    --- Defend what you say with arguments, not by imposing your credentials ---

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    For the same reason that the EAD is allowing you to keep flying indefinitely an airplane with such an engine (but only one of them, not 2).
    Well, hopefully the mandate is to get these off passenger jets within a 'reasonable timeframe' —and once off, keep them off—until the issue can be resolved.

    Or does it have to take an uncontained failure / headline story to do that?

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