Indias' civil aviation regulator, DGCA has no plans to ground the fleet of A320neo (new engine option) aircraft powered by "PW1100G-JM" engines due to the recurring problems with the engine type. Asked about the possible grounding of the A320neo aircraft powered by the particular engine type, Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) chief B.S. Bhullar told IANS that there were no such plans.
The development comes days after budget passenger carrier IndiGo said that it has "withdrawn" three of its A320neo aircraft from service after "receiving" precautionary recommendations from European Aviation Safety Agency on a particular engine type which powers these planes.
"The recommendations are with respect to a certain sub-population of engines, with a particular engine configuration. IndiGo has only three such affected aircraft. As soon as IndiGo learnt of these developments, IndiGo had proactively withdrawn the three A320neo aircraft from service w.e.f. 9th of February," the airline had said in a statement on February 10.
"Our precautionary measure of grounding the three aircraft resulted in cancellations of some of our flights. But we feel it was the best decision in the interest of our safe and reliable operations." In India, only IndiGo and GoAir operate the A320neo aircraft.
On the global level, engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney said the current population of impacted engines stands at 43 which are installed on 32 aircraft, of which 21 planes have one engine with the modified configuration, and 11 aircraft have two engines with that configuration.
There are also "approximately 55 such engines" delivered to the Airbus final assembly line awaiting installation on customer aircraft, Pratt & Whitney said. "Pratt & Whitney, in coordination with Airbus, will present to regulatory authorities this week a proposed mitigation plan for the modified configuration," P&W said in a statement.
"Pratt & Whitney is working with Airbus to implement the remediation plans set forth in its all operator transmission. The company is also working to assess an overall industrial and delivery plan to minimise customer disruption. "Pratt & Whitney will be in a position to provide greater detail around the remediation plan and impact, if any, on its 2018 delivery plan, once the regulatory authorities address its proposed solution," it said.