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No 787 flight restrictions to follow Trent 1000 failure

The European Aviation Safety Agency has said Boeing's 787 flight-test programme can continue. This follows what has been confirmed by the US Federal Aviation Administration to have been an uncontained failure of a Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 powerplant during ground testing.

The incident, which occurred on 2 August at the engine-maker's Derby, UK test facility, has been initially linked to the failure of the engine's intermediate pressure turbine. The failed engine was scheduled to power an early 787-8 delivery to launch customer All Nippon Airways.

EASA says: "At this stage we do not expect to place any engine-related operational restrictions for the aircraft."

It adds: "ETOPS certification is not in our remit. We support the FAA, responsible for the certification of the aircraft, on all engine matters that impact the ETOPS certification of the aircraft."

The failed Trent 1000 was of R-R's "Package A" configuration, which will power the first ANA 787s before transition to the "Package B" standard brings specific fuel consumption within 1% of the original specification.

While not specifically addressing what it believes led to the failure, R-R has said "a modification is already in place for later engines".

Four of the six 787 flight-test aircraft are powered by the Trent 1000. Boeing offers its customers a choice of Trent 1000 or General Electric GEnx-1B engines.

First delivery to ANA is expected by the end of the year, although Boeing has indicated this target could slip to early 2011.

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