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Monitoring P&W engine glitches to ensure safety, says DGCA

New Delhi, Feb 13 (PTI) Aviation regulator DGCA today said it is monitoring engine glitches in Pratt & Whitney- powered Airbus A320 Neo aircraft to ensure that safety is not compromised at any time.

IndiGo has grounded three A320 neo aircraft due to engine problems.

The DGCA move follows a directive from European aviation safety regulator EASA after instances of the engine's in- flight shutdowns and rejected take-offs involving A320 neo family planes.

"It is to reiterate that DGCA is continuously monitoring these operations to ensure that safety is not compromised at any stage and A320neo aircraft in the fleet of Indian operators are being operated safely," according to a statement from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation.

The latest problem in Pratt & Whitney engines pertains to a knife edge seal on the high pressure compressor (HPC) aft hub on a limited subpopulation of the PW1100G-JM engines.

The new issue follows a series of performance issues in the last two years relating to the engine's combustion chamber and carbon seal for one of the bearings.

The DGCA said that three of the total 14 affected aircraft in the country have been grounded because they had a problem in both the engines, adding that as per EASA's instructions no such restriction has been imposed on the remaining 11 planes.

The EASA has ordered grounding of aeroplanes with both engines affected and has barred airlines from extended range twin-engine operations for aeroplanes with at least one affected engine.

None of the 11 remaining aircraft are approved for ETOPs operations.

The DGCA added that "as on date, 11 aircraft with both engines impacted have been grounded."

The aviation watchdog said that it will review actions recommended by EASA.

"DGCA is already in touch with M/s Airbus and EASA and any action taken by them will be reviewed proactively to ensure safety of aircraft operations, which is of paramount importance by the DGCA," as per the statement.

It said that earlier, too, it had taken a slew of measures to deal with problems faced by P&W engines, including more frequent boroscopic inspections as well as grounding of aircraft on illumination of "oil chip lights".

"Therefore, all the engine removals were done in a planned manner before the impending failure of engines and DGCA ensured that there is no compromise on safety of aircraft operations," the statement added.

The ministry of civil aviation had said yesterday that as many as 69 replacements were carried out in 18 months.

There are a total 45 A320 Neos in the country, of these 32 are with IndiGo and 13 are with GoAir. PTI JC IAS ZMN

Disclaimer: This story has not been edited by BW staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.

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