Turkish Airlines to ground Airbus A320neo aircraft due to Pratt & Whitney engine problem

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Turkish Airlines has confirmed that more of its planes will have to be grounded due to a problem with some engines built by Pratt & Whitney.

Up to 12 aircraft may have to be grounded before the end of the year, the Turkish carrier said on Monday, after nine of its P&W-powered Airbus A320s and A321neos suffered the same fate last month. “Due to uncertainties in the process, it is possible that this figure will be revised upwards,” the airline added.

L’American company RTX (formerly Raytheon), parent company of engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitneysaid in July that it would have to retire 600 to 700 of its engines PW1100 Geared Turbofan (GTF) which equip Airbus A320neo to check for the presence of a rare manufacturing defect.

These quality inspections to detect microscopic problems should take place between 2023 and 2026 and could ground an average of 350 planes per year until 2026, and up to 650 planes during the first half of 2024. In the event of necessary maintenance, the work is now expected to last up to 300 days per engine, and no longer 60 days, as Greg Hayes, general manager of RTX, had initially indicated. According to the latest statements from the engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney, 1,200 engines assembled between the fourth quarter of 2015 and the third quarter of 2021, out of the approximately 3,000 manufactured in total, are potentially affected by production defects.

Turkish Airlines operates 58 A320neo and A321neo powered by PW1100 Geared Turbofan (GTF) within its fleet of 428 aircraft. “Our negotiations with the manufacturer on this matter are continuing”added the group. “As questions remain unclear regarding the affected engines and maintenance plans, it seems possible that changes in quantities will occur (…) in the coming period. »

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