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Rolls-Royce

Rolls-Royce engine wear grounds SIA 787s

The engine maker promises a quick fix for Dreamliners around the world as Singapore Airlines grounds two of its 787-10s.

Singapore Airlines has been forced to ground two Boeing 787-10 aircraft after premature blade deterioration was found on some Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 TEN engines during a routine inspection.

While admitting that the blades in the engines have a shortened lifespan, Rolls now says it will accelerate the installation of the redesigned blades.

The engine type is used on 787 Dreamliners, including a number of Norwegian’s, and Rolls-Royce’s realisation it would have to rework the engine came after it inspected a number of the global fleet that had “flown in more arduous conditions,” the UK company explains in a statement.

It promises to work closely with customers as it tests an “enhanced version” of the blade.

It has not said how many planes or airlines are affected, but in February it said that about 35 Dreamliners remained grounded due to the problem.

High flight frequency
“Working with operators, we have been sampling a small population of the Trent 1000 TEN fleet that have experienced a higher frequency of flights at the upper end of their operating range,” Rolls-Royce says in its statement.

“This work has shown that a small number of these engines need to have their blades replaced earlier than scheduled.”

The 1000 TEN was supposed to be an improved version of the Trent 1000 engine series, powering just under half of the Boeing 787-10s – the biggest of Boeing’s 787 Dreamliners – that are currently in service.

Design glitches have hampered Rolls and its Trent programme for three years, leading to $1.7 billion in charges while eating into the manufacturer’s share of the 787 market, to the benefit of rival General Electric, the news agency Bloomberg reports.

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