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Sunday, 10 April 2011

Airbus Updates No.165

Incident: Iran A310 near Tehran on Apr 7th 2011, engine shut down in flight

By Simon Hradecky, created Friday, Apr 8th 2011 15:33Z, last updated Friday, Apr 8th 2011 16:34Z
An Iran Air Airbus A310-300, registration EP-IBK performing flight IR-729 from Tehran Imam Khomeini (Iran) to Cologne (Germany), was about 35 minutes into the flight when the crew observed high exhaust gas temperatures and vibrations for the left hand engine (CF6). After shutting the engine down the crew returned to Tehran's Imam Khomeini Airport for a safe landing.

A replacement Airbus A300-600 registration EP-IBC reached Cologne with a delay of 26 hours.

Engine #1 of EP-IBK needs to be replaced.

Report: Vueling A320 near Barcelona on May 28th 2006, wake turbulence injures 7
By Simon Hradecky, created Saturday, Apr 9th 2011 21:17Z, last updated Saturday, Apr 9th 2011 21:18Z
A Vueling Airbus A320-200, registration EC-JDK performing flight VY-1190 from Barcelona,SP to Santiago de Compostela,SP (Spain) with 137 passengers and 7 crew, was climbing through FL325 out of Barcelona having been cleared to FL370, when the airplane encountered severe turbulence causing the airplane roll right and to lose altitude. The crew was able to regain control at FL303 and continued the flight at Fl310 towards Santiago de Compostela for a safe landing. 4 passengers and 3 crew received minor injuries, the airplane received minor damage.

An unidentified Airbus A340-300 was enroute at FL330 on the same airway in the same direction about 10nm ahead of the A320.

The Spain's Comision de Investigacion de Accidentes e Incidents de Aviacion Civil (CIAIAC) released their
final report in Spanish concluding:
The onset of turbulence was caused by wake turbulence from an Airbus A340-300 flying at FL330 at a ground speed of 464 knots following the same airway in the same direction 10.13nm ahead of the Airbus A320.

The actions by the crew, like simultaneous sidestick inputs, delayed autothrottle and autopilot disconnection and left rudder input did not conform to procedures and thus possibly contributed to exacerbate the effects of the external influence.

The first officer (35, ATPL, 5,700 hours total, 500 hour on type) was pilot flying, the captain (51, ATPL, 14,000 hours total, 1,800 hour on type) was pilot monitoring. The airplane was climbing through FL325 on autopilot and autothrottle, when severe turbulence caused the airplane to roll right and descend with the autopilot unable to counteract the roll and descent. When the airplane reached a right bank angle of 33 degrees, both crew began to operate their sidesticks reaching the mechanical stops, both crews moving their sidesticks uncoordinated for 21 seconds, prompting the autopilot to disconnect. While the captain reacted to the increase in vertical load by commanding a nose down the first officer pulled the side stick commanding a nose up, both crew commanded a left roll to counteract the right roll. A 10 degrees left rudder input was recorded that was reduced to 1.7 degrees left. As result the airplane began to roll to the left reaching a bank angle of 33 degrees left before the airplane rolled to the right again, the airplane went through 4 right/left roll cycles as well as four pitch up/down cycles, the autothrust system was disconnected, two more left rudder inputs of 9 and 5.2 degrees occurred. The maximum bank angles were 33 degrees left/49 degrees right and the maximum pitch angles reached 0.4 degrees nose down and 8.7 degrees nose up, vertical accelerations reached -0.45G and +1.69G, lateral accelerations reached 0.47G to the left and 0.32G to the right. The captain took control of the aircraft announcing "I have control" and pushed the override button, the first officer acknowledged "your controls", the autothrust system was disconnected 33 seconds after the onset, and the airplane stabilized at FL303. Autothrust and Autopilot were engaged again 45 seconds after the onset, the airplane climbed to FL310 and continued the flight.

Four passengers and 3 crew received minor injuries, mainly bruises.

Postflight examinations revealed, that design limits were not exceeded, no anomalies were identified in the flight control systems, the airframe did not receive any damage except for some minor damage in the rear galley and rear doors due to impact by a service cart.

Both crew reported in post flight interviews that they did not hear the aural announcement "dual input".

The CIAIAC reported that weather was not found to be a factor into the occurrence. Required separation with the A340-300 was met.

An American Airlines Airbus A300-600 registration N14053 flight AA-587 had crashed into Belle Harbour,NY shortly after takeoff from New York's John F. Kennedy Airport on Nov 12th 2001. The NTSB's
final report determined as probable cause:

the in-flight separation of the vertical stabilizer as a result of the loads beyond ultimate design that were created by the first officer's unnecessary and excessive rudder pedal inputs. Contributing to these rudder pedal inputs were characteristics of the Airbus A300-600 rudder system design and elements of the American Airlines Advanced Aircraft Maneuvering Program.

As a result of this investigation the NTSB released a safety recommendation in 2002 requesting aircraft manufacturers to emphasize structural requirements and certification for rudder and vertical stabilizers and call to attention that certain rudder actions can exceed the structural design limits and cause structural failures.

As a result Airbus released a modification to the Flight Crew Operating Manual in June 2004 pointing certification and design criteria out in detail and emphasizing, that design limits can be exceeded by certain rudder inputs and cause structural failures. Airbus also stated, that the rudder should not be used to counter roll and yaw oscillations caused by any kind of turbulence.

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