IndiGo grounds three A320neos amid fresh PW1100G issues

IndiGo Airlines

An Airbus spokesman said it is "in discussions with customers about delivery schedules" on a case-by-case basis.

The grounding of aircraft came after a directive from European Aviation Safety Regulatory (EASA), PTI reported.

A total of 11 A320neo have been grounded, including three Indigo jets, in what is a major blow for Airbus.

IndiGo, owned by InterGlobe Aviation Ltd, said that it is in contact with Pratt & Whitney to address the results of a recent finding.

Airbus SE halted all deliveries of its best-selling aircraft, the A320neo narrow-body jets featuring the Pratt & Whitney PW1100G geared-turbofan engine, after the European Aviation Safety Agency issued an emergency airworthiness directive (AD) warning of potential in-flight engine failure. "As soon as IndiGo learnt of these developments, IndiGo had proactively withdrawn the three A320neo aircraft from service w.e.f. 9th of February", the airline had said in a statement on Saturday.

Jet engine maker Pratt & Whitney said Monday the edge of a high-pressure seal is the likely cause of engine problems that prompted Airbus to suspend deliveries.

The engine issue has been linked to "several" reports of "in-flight shutdown", European officials say.

"We confirm of receiving the recommendations by Pratt & Whitney as well as EASA (European Aviation Safety Regulator) with respect to the A320neo aircraft powered by PW1100G - JM engines". The unit has been dogged by reports of GTF manufacturing delays and mechanical problems, although one Wall Street analyst said last month that it may transform into a significant profit driver.

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. Customers can choose between the Pratt & Whitney model and a type built by the CFM joint venture between General Electric Co and France's Safran SA.

The Pratt & Whitney engines are installed in about 113 Airbus planes across 18 airlines - the majority of which are in India and Europe, a Pratt & Whitney spokesperson told CNNMoney.

Earlier overheating problems on the Pratt engines have interfered with A320neo deliveries since early previous year. The regulator said Friday that operators with planes using two affected engines must stop flying them within three flight cycles.

"We have three aircraft with the particular engine configuration which have been flagged by EASA", said IndiGo.



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