View Full Version : A380 wing cracks

Dimitri Cherchenko
9th Jul 2019, 10:51
Airbus to ask airlines to check wings of older A380s for cracks. European aircraft maker Airbus will ask airlines operating 25 of its oldest A380 super-jumbo jets to inspect their wings after cracks were found in some models, the EU's Aviation Safety Agency said.

The EASA said in an airworthiness directive dated July 5 that "occurrences have been reported of finding cracks" in certain parts of the wing on in-service A380 aeroplanes. "This condition, if not detected and corrected, could reduce the structural integrity of the wing," the EASA said. "To address this potential unsafe condition, Airbus plans to issue the SB (service bulletin) to provide inspection instructions." The directive does not yet ground any aircraft for the moment.

"This airworthiness directive is considered an interim action, limited to the 25 oldest wing sets," the EASA said. "Based on inspection findings, further AD action may follow to address additional in-service aeroplanes." It is not first time that the A380, the world's biggest passenger aircraft, has experienced such problems.

9th Jul 2019, 11:14
As a significant part of those early 380 are anyway soon going to the scrapyards anyway it might just be irrelevant...

9th Jul 2019, 12:35
This is a different area of the wing, the previous AD was for inspection (and eventual replacement) of the wing rib feet.
I've not seen the SB, but the external Ultrasonic Phased Array inspection would only be a couple of hours work with no strip down required. The internal Ultrasonic Inspection is a different matter that would require tank access and sealant removal, this would take quite a bit of time although the inspection would again only take a couple of hours. Provided it's scheduled during a heavy maintenance check it wouldn't be a problem.
These type of inspections are not unusual, there's similar inspections on the A330 and A340.

9th Jul 2019, 12:54
Affected aircraft (25 in total):
2 x Air France
9 x Emirates
3 x HiFly Malta (ex-Singapore)
1 x Lufthansa
6 x Qantas
4 x Singapore

9th Jul 2019, 14:17
Possibly scrapping at 12 years old? and BA are flying B747's at 28 years old.