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SIA to change three engines on A380s

Singapore Airlines (SIA) is changing the Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines on three of its Airbus A380 aircraft after inspections.

These aircraft are currently in London, Melbourne and Sydney, and will be brought back to Singapore for the engine changes, says an SIA spokesman. He adds that one powerplant on each of the four-engined aircraft needs to be changed. Only three engines need to be changed in total, he says.

This comes after the Star Alliance carrier conducted checks on its A380 powerplants following last week's uncontained engine failure on a Qantas Airways A380 Trent 900 engine, forcing the aircraft to make an emergency landing in Singapore. Qantas has changed two Trent 900 engines on its A380s and is continuing with inspections of its remaining Trent 900s.

"Based on further analysis of inspection findings as the investigation into last week's incident involving another operator's Airbus A380 is progressing, Singapore Airlines will be carrying out precautionary engine changes on three A380s," says the spokesman.

The spokesman did not specify the reason for the engine changes. However, sources say that SIA has been checking for oil leakage in IP/HP turbine areas and IP/HP blades, for damage and oil leakage on air transfer tubes and cavities, and has been checking the bearing chamber for oil.

He was unable to say how long the aircraft will be grounded as a result of the engine changes. However, the airline says that there may be some flight disruptions as a result of this move.

The spokesman adds that the engine changes do not affect the other eight Trent 900-powered A380s in the carrier's fleet. "Any further checks that may be recommended by the manufacturers will of course be done, and in the meantime we continue with our regular routine checks," he says.

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