Airbus A320neo engine issue more extensive than first reported

Problems with engines that power Airbus A320neo aircraft are more extensive than had been previously reported.

In an announcement Monday, RTX, the parent company of engine maker Pratt & Whitney, said that the rare condition in the powder metal used to manufacture certain engine parts of PW1100 GTF engines will require that approximately 600 to 700 engines be removed from service for shop visits between 2023 and 2026. A majority of those removals must take place between now and early 2024. 

The engine problems will have a $3 billion to $3.5 billion impact on RTX profits, the company said. 

In July, Pratt & Whitney said approximately 200 aircraft would need to be inspected by the middle of this month, and inspections of another 1,000 engines would be required in the next nine to 12 months.

Monday’s announcement accelerated the timeline for many inspections. In addition, the repair work in now expected to last up to 300 days per engine, Reuters reported, instead of the 60 days the company had initially expected. That means an average of up to 350 aircraft will be grounded per year through 2026. 

Airlines have already begun chafing over the impact the groundings will have. Air New Zealand, for example, said the PW1100 issue will have a significant impact on it scheduled beginning in January, according to Reuters.

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