Saturday, 21 April, 2018

Expanded Trent 1000 inspections set to disrupt 787 operations

Rolls is facing higher costs Rolls is facing higher costs
Sandra Phillips | 14 April, 2018, 04:34

The latest problem concerns a wear issue in the Trent 1000's compressor that's worse than expected, according to Rolls-Royce, which said the inspections will be accompanied by safety guidance to airlines issued by airworthiness authorities.

It says, however, that the need for more regular inspections will result in higher cash costs that those in its previous financial guidance.

"The increased inspection frequency is driven by our further understanding of the durability of the Trent 1000 Package C compressor, a condition that we highlighted earlier this year", the company said, adding that there are 380 Package C engines now in-service with airlines. Durability problems with the Trent 1000 and an engine used on the Airbus SE A380 led to a £170m cash cost a year ago, and that figure was already set to double in 2018.

"Our focus is on supporting our customers and doing all we can to minimise any impact on their operations", says Rolls-Royce chief executive Warren East. J P Morgan Chase & Co lowered their price objective on shares of Rolls-Royce Holding PLC from GBX 890 ($11.09) to GBX 730 ($9.09) and set a neutral rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, January 5th. The Civil Aerospace segment provides commercial aero engines, such as airlines, business aviation, and helicopter engines for various sectors of the airline and corporate jet markets, as well as aftermarket services.

Boeing said about 25 per cent of the 787 Dreamliners flying were powered by the engine and it was deploying support teams to mitigate service disruptions.

The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) plans to reduce the amount of time the affected planes can fly on a single engine after a failure of the other.

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The need to inspect and fix Trent 1000 engines has led to an industry-wide shortage.

"We sincerely regret the disruption this will cause to our customers", CEO East said in a statement.

Virgin Atlantic said it had up to four 787s grounded at any one time while it organised replacement engines from Rolls.

A Virgin spokeswoman said it had been aware of the increased inspections and that the cover it had in place would be sufficient.

British Airways, Japan's ANA, Air New Zealand and Thai Airways, which also use Trent 1000 engines, were not available for immediate comment.

In December the EASA ordered airlines to replace some Trent 1000 engines.

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