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Virgin aircraft -- use of unauthorised engine parts

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Virgin aircraft -- use of unauthorised engine parts

Old 18th Sep 2023, 07:29
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Virgin aircraft -- use of unauthorised engine parts

From the Sydney Morning Herald site:


Two Virgin Australia aircraft have been temporarily pulled from service after the airline became aware their engines were fitted with unauthorised parts.

Virgin confirmed on Monday the affected aircraft were part of its fleet of Boeing 737-800s, which fly most of its domestic services between destinations including Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.

The airline became aware of the issues after being notified of falsified certification documents for aircraft parts which came from UK-based supplier AOG Technics, as first reported by Bloomberg.

AOG supplies engine parts that power many Airbus A320s and Boeing 737s, two of the most common types of commercial aircraft in the world.

A low-pressure turbine blade on VH-VUT, a Boeing 737-800, was replaced last week after the airline was notified of the false documents.
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Old 18th Sep 2023, 07:56
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Counterfeit parts have been an issue since Adam was a cowboy. Good to see these one were picked up.
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Old 18th Sep 2023, 09:49
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Why does the article close with a rag on the 737 MAX?, it has nothing to do with the affected parts. Why not say also that numerous 737-800s have crashed throughout history, which is the model affected by the parts. I'd almost say somebody with 'lounge' access has written this piece and just decided to throw some extra spice at the end.... It's almost like the are saying Virgin operates dodgy 737-800s with bad parts, but they also operate dodgy MAXs, don't fly with them.

The tidbit at the end would only make sense if it was illegal parts that caused the accidents.
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Old 18th Sep 2023, 13:37
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I didn't know Adam was a cowboy, I thought he was just a naughty boy.
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Old 19th Sep 2023, 07:56
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Not really Virgin's fault if the obtained the parts through a legitimate supplier, good to see that the paper trail worked.
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Old 19th Sep 2023, 08:44
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Bogus aircraft parts are like illegal drugs and unfortunately the trade is probably only going to get worse with the current supply chain shortages post COVID.

I heard from an engineer a few days ago of another airline unknowingly receiving dodgy windscreens from an unreputable source. The grubs who supplied the junk were caught and dealt with accordingly.

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Old 19th Sep 2023, 08:52
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Wouldn't today's digital parts numbers and identities make tracking legit parts and finding bogus parts much easier? At least for newer aircraft.
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Old 19th Sep 2023, 16:01
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Any relation to the two cancelled HND-CNS SERVICES. As in, the MAX being retasked?
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Old 19th Sep 2023, 21:38
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Originally Posted by Buster Hyman
Any relation to the two cancelled HND-CNS SERVICES. As in, the MAX being retasked?
According to one outlet, negative, was VUT and YFR
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Old 19th Sep 2023, 21:53
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Some years ago even Air Force One was found to have counterfeit parts installed.
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Old 19th Sep 2023, 23:24
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Counterfeit President onboard too!

Thanks PJ, but I was wondering if the HND cancellation was due to 8IA being retasked to cover the two 738’s.
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Old 25th Sep 2023, 11:29
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UK firm sold thousands of unverified jet engine parts, CFM says | Reuters

UK firm sold thousands of unverified jet engine parts, CFM says

By Sam Tobin and Tim Hepher
September 21, 20237:27 AM GMT+10Updated 4 days ago

CFM accuses distributor of 'dishonest and sophisticated scheme'

Thousands of parts with forged certificates may have been sold

Up to 96 planes may be taken out of service for checks

AOG Technics says cooperating fully with investigation

LONDON, Sept 20 (Reuters) - Jet engine maker CFM International said on Wednesday thousands of engine components may have been sold with forged paperwork by a British distributor, as the fallout from a probe into falsely certified parts reached London's High Court.

Matthew Reeve, a lawyer for CFM and its co-owners General Electric (GE.N) and Safran (SAF.PA), said AOG Technics had engaged in a "deliberate, dishonest and sophisticated scheme to deceive the market with falsified documents on an industrial scale".
European regulators have said they are investigating reports that some parts supplied by the London-based firm without valid certificates had been found inside CFM56 engines, which power some Airbus and Boeing jets.

AOG did not address the underlying claim of forgery in the hearing, which was called to discuss procedural issues. The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment on its main number, which went to hold then voicemail.
The discovery has prompted airlines to change parts on a handful of planes and so far only a fraction of the 23,000 existing CFM56 engines has been affected.
But Reeve said in court filings that CFM and its engine partners have "compelling documentary evidence that thousands of jet engine parts have been sold by (AOG) to airlines operating commercial aircraft fitted with the claimants' jet engines".
These include parts for CFM56 engines, built by the GE-Safran joint-venture CFM, and a very small number of CF6 engines used mainly to power cargo planes and manufactured purely by GE.

Industry sources said the majority of spare parts sold by distributors like AOG involve small items that are not made by the engine makers themselves and are not considered critical.

Even so, the number of planes that could have to be taken out of service for checks is approaching 100 and analysts say any disruption to the tightly monitored system of controls underpinning the safety of air travel must be tackled quickly.
Reeve said that so far, 86 falsified documents known as release certificates had been identified. By Monday, the number of engines suspected to have parts with forged documents had risen to 96.
"Potentially, that means between 48 and 96 aircraft being taken out of service whilst airlines arrange for the parts to be removed," Reeve added.
The sale of parts with fake or missing release certificates "potentially puts aircraft safety in jeopardy" and makes it impossible to verify airworthiness, CFM said in a filing.

A release certificate is akin to a birth certificate for an engine part, guaranteeing it is genuine.

The engine maker and its French and American parent companies took AOG and its sole director Jose Zamora Yrala to court to force them to hand over documents related to any remaining parts and paperwork linked to CFM56 and CF6 engines since February 2015.

They said they were first alerted to the alleged forgery by a Portuguese maintenance and repair company in June, prompting a scramble to discover the extent of the issue.
Lawyers representing AOG and Zamora Yrala said the defendants were "cooperating fully" with an investigation by Britain's Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).
AOG lawyer Tom Cleaver argued GE did not need a large amount of documents in order to contact possible buyers of the parts.
"Everybody now knows that AOG parts are not necessarily to be taken to be the claimants' parts," he said.
Judge Richard Meade ruled that AOG and Zamora Yrala should disclose "invoices, release certificates, memos of shipment and purchase orders" for 230 transactions.

CFM welcomed the court order, which it said would help the industry identify unapproved parts more rapidly.
CFM56 engines power the previous generation of Boeing 737s and about half the previous generation of Airbus A320s. These are gradually being upgraded but thousands remain in service.

The CFM56 is also used on Boeing P-8 maritime patrol planes sold to the United States and Britain, while the GE-built CF6 powers Boeing KC-767A tankers sold to Italy and Japan.

There have been no reports of suspect parts on military aircraft. Boeing and Airbus had no immediate comment.

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency, in a filing first reported by Bloomberg, said in August it was examining reports of parts with suspected falsified documents supplied by AOG. Britain's CAA said in August it was "investigating the supply of a large number of suspect unapproved parts".

Reporting by Sam Tobin and Tim Hepher, Additional reporting by Valerie Insinna Editing
by Tomasz Janowski, Mark Potter and David Gregorio
My my
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