posted on Apr, 23 2016 @ 11:39 PM
The FAA has issued an airworthiness directive to train pilots on how to handle icing conditions, as well as make emergency repairs to 787 GEnx-1B PiP2
engines. If the repairs aren't made, the airlines have to replace one of the two engines with an older PiP engine. They have until October 1st to
comply with the directive. The directive is a result of a January 29th incident, where a 787 flying at below 30,000 feet suffered significant damage
due to icing conditions to the PiP2 upgraded engine, resulting in it shutting down and the crew being unable to restart it. The other engine was an
older engine and only suffered minor damage.
The engine suffered icing on the fan blades prior to the incident. The ice broke loose and went caused a fan blade imbalance, that led to excessive
rubbing on the casing by the blades. This caused the shut down, and prevented restart. GE has already altered the manufacturing process to include
increased fan clearance at the tips. The AD calls for shaving a layer of metal off the casing around the tips of the fan blades to increase
clearance. The repairs can be done in about 16 hours, while the engines are still on the wings. Approximately 40 aircraft have already been
On aircraft that haven't been upgraded, if icing above 12,500 feet is suspected or an indicator light confirms icing, pilots are ordered to put the
engine power to 85% every five minutes to prevent the ice from building up. The PiP2 upgrade was designed to prevent icing in the core of the engine
to prevent power rollbacks during flight.
Icing issues on certain models of the General Electric engines on Boeing 787 Dreamliners led to FAA to issue directive to “urgently modify”
According to a directive issued Friday by the Federal Aviation Agency directive, the engines on Boeing 787 Dreamliners must be “urgently
modified.” The General Electric engine model GEnx-1B PIP2 is in question. Planes that are equipped with both engines of that model could potentially
experience a catastrophic loss of both engines in flight.
The FAA directive says in part of its directive:
“The urgency of this issue stems from the safety concern over continued safe flight and landing for airplanes that are powered by two GEnx-1B PIP2
engines operating in a similar environment to the event airplane. In this case both GEnx-1B PIP2 engines may be similarly damaged and unable to be
restarted in flight. The potential for common cause failure of both engines in flight is an urgent safety issue.”