NTSB INVESTIGATING LOSS OF ENGINE POWER

ON A DELTA AIR LINES BOEING 777

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                       NTSB ADVISORY
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National Transportation Safety Board
Washington, DC 20594

December 18, 2008

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NTSB INVESTIGATING LOSS OF ENGINE POWER ON DELTA AIR LINES
BOEING 777

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The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating an
incident in which a Delta Air Lines Boeing 777 experienced
an uncommanded engine rollback in the cruise phase of an
intercontinental flight.

On November 26, 2008, at about 12:30 pm MST, in the vicinity
of Great Falls, Montana, a 777-200ER (N862DA), operated by
Delta Air Lines as Flight 18, en route from Shanghai to
Atlanta, experienced an uncommanded rollback of the right
(number 2) Rolls-Royce Trent 895 engine while at 39,000 feet
in the cruise phase of flight.  The crew executed applicable
flight manual procedures and descended to 31,000 feet. The
engine recovered and responded normally thereafter.  The
flight continued to Atlanta where it landed without further
incident.  None of the crew of 15 or 232 passengers was
injured.

Flight data recorders and other applicable data and
components were retrieved from the airplane for testing and
evaluation.  Both of the pilots have been interviewed.

This event is preceded by another airline's 777 equipped
with Rolls-Royce Trent 895 engines, which experienced an
uncommanded dual engine rollback while on final approach to
London's Heathrow International Airport on January 17, 2008,
crashing short of the runway on airport property.  The
United Kingdom's Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB)
is investigating that accident. 

NTSB Senior Air Safety Investigator Bill English, who is
serving as the U.S. Accredited Representative in the
Heathrow accident investigation, is the Investigator in
Charge of the Delta incident.

The AAIB, which has assigned an Accredited Representative to
the Delta incident, is working closely with the NTSB to
determine if there are issues common to both events.

Parties to the investigation are: the Federal Aviation
Administration, Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Eaton-Argotech,
Delta Air Lines, and the Air Line Pilots Association.

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Delta did file a SDR on the NTSB incident mentioned above but note the SDR gives no information to a rollback but rather a ‘fluctuation’ and an engine “pwr (power) shortfall”.  According to the SDR filed, there was no ‘rollback’.  See that SDR filed below >>

 

DL777081650  (b) Difficulty Date 11/26/2008. Registration # 862DA.  Submitter Designator; DALA.  JASC/ATA Code 7200.  BOEING 777-232.  Engine RROYCE RB211TRENT89.  

Problem Description: RT ENG PARAMETERS FLUCTUATED AND ENG PWR SHORTFALL AT FL390 WITH ENG RESPONSE EICAS MSG.  PERFORMED QRH 7.25 AND DESCENDED TO FL310.  CORRECTED PROBLEM.  FUEL TEMP WAS -22 AND OAT -56.  MTC IN PROGRESS.

Ed Note:  Although required, there was no ‘apparent cause’ or a ‘component causing the difficulty’ information provided.   Although also required, no “supplemental SDR” has been filed since.

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In a search of all RB 211 series engines under ATA code 7200 (engines) for all carriers from 12/16/05 to now, two other shutdowns because of other more simple reasons (birdstrikes, oil pressure, etc) .  See below >>

 

AALA20070281  (b) Difficulty Date 02/04/2007.  AALA 757223RROYCE RB211535C37

MIA - INFLIGHT T922/04FEB - AFTER TAKEOFF RIGHT ENGINE COMPRESSOR STALLED WITH UNCOMMANDED ENGINE SHUTDOWN FOLLOWED BY ENGINE GAS TEMPERATURE OVER TEMPERATURE INDICATION.  RETURNED TO MIA AND LANDED WITHOUT INCIDENT.  SYSTEM GROUND CHECKED NORMAL OPERATION.

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AALA20060288  (b) Difficulty Date 05/07/2006.  BOEING 777-223.  RROYCE RB211*

Problem Description: GRU - AT 8000 FEET LEFT ENGINE HAD AN UNCOMMANDED SHUTDOWN AFTER A STRONG BANG.  RETURNED TO GRU AND LANDED WITHOUT INCIDENT.  INSPECTED LEFT ENGINE INLET AND EXHAUST AND NO DAMAGE FOUND.  DURING INSPECTIONS FOUND  SEVERAL METALLIC DEBRIS ON EXHAUST.  REPLACED NUMBER ONE ENGINE.  SYSTEM GROUND CHECKED NORMAL OPERATION.