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Monday
Nov082010

Qantas continues A380 engine inspection after mid-air failure

Qantas Airways, the national airline of Australia, continues research this week into the cause of a mid-air engine explosion that forced the recent emergency landing of one of its aircraft.  The affected aircraft is an Airbus A380, and as a result of the engine failure, Qantas has grounded indefinitely (but for at least a week) its entire fleet of Airbus A380s.  The aircraft that suffered the engine failure had departed from Changi Airport in Singapore (IATA: SIN; ICAO: WSSS) bound for Kingsford Smith Airport in Sydney, the largest Australian city (IATA: SYD; ICAO: YSSY).  Engine failure occurred relatively shortly after takeoff, as the aircraft had only made it over Indonesia when it was forced to dump fuel and return to Singapore.

"A series of recent emergencies on various aircraft" has afflicted Australia's best-known airline, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.  Investigators into the malfunctions have discovered faults with three Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines, the type used to power the Airbus A380.  Singapore Airlines and the German carrier Lufthansa have said they will continue operating the A380.  Air France and Dubai-based Emirates also operate the A380, but as of this post, neither has explicitly indicated, in light of the Qantas engine explosion, whether they will or will not continue to fly the A380.

Singapore-Sydney was the very first route flown commercially by the Airbus A380.  That flight, in October 2007, was operated by Singapore Airlines.

Qantas Airways was founded in 1920 as Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services.  The acronym of its original name is what the airline goes by today.  It is colloquially known as the "Flying Kangaroo."  Qantas operates 142 aircraft, six of which are the grounded A380s.  Qantas flies to 18 domestic destinations, and also flies to four destinations in New Zealand, and one in the French overseas collectivity of New Caledonia.  In addition, it flies to four destinations in North America, one in South America, one in Africa, two in Europe, and eight in Asia.  Qantas operates hubs at Kingsford Smith Airport near Sydney (IATA: SYD; ICAO: YSSY), and at Tullamarine Airport near Melbourne (IATA: MEL; ICAO: YMML).  Its main offices are in the Botany Bay sector of Sydney.  Company stock is traded on the Sydney-based Australian Securities Exchange.

original stories

Qantas Continues A380 Engine Inspection Program (Qantas Airways)

Qantas Extends A380 Grounding to a Week After Engine Explosion (Bloomberg BusinessWeek)

Oil leaks investigated as Qantas Extends A380 grounding (Sydney Morning Herald)

Qantas A380 makes emergency landing in Singapore (Sydney Morning Herald)

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