The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) says the 4 November uncontained failure of a Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engine on a Qantas Airways Airbus A380 caused extensive damage to the wing, the aircraft's No 1 engine, and the fuselage.

"The failure of the No 2 engine ejected a number of engine components that struck the aircraft or were liberated overboard," says the ATSB. "Sections of the intermediate pressure (IP) turbine disc penetrated the leading edge of the left wing inboard of the No 2 engine, resulting in damage to the leading edge structure, the front wing spar and the upper surface of the wing."

A small section of the No 2 engine's "liberated turbine disc" penetrated the left wing-to-fuselage fairing, damaging numerous system components, the fuselage structure, and elements of the aircraft's electrical wiring. Debris also hit the left wing's lower surface, causing a fuel leak from the No 2 engine fuel feed tank and left wing inner fuel tank..

Debris also hit the No 2 engine support pylon, the No 1 engine, the left fuselage keel beam support splice, and the left wing false spar. A small impact region was also observed on the left side of the aircraft's fuselage.

The report goes onto add that a dark residue was observed inside the left wing inner fuel tank between ribs eight to 10. This will be further examined.

"Impact damage from the liberated engine debris affected a number of aircraft systems," says the ATSB. "Damage was observed to elements of the aircraft's electrical wiring that affected the operation of the hydraulic system, landing gear and flight controls; a number of fuel system components; and the leading edge slat system."

After the aircraft made an emergency landing in Singapore, the flight crew was unable to shut down engine No. 1 for over two hours.

"Ground engineers also attended the aircraft and attempted a number of methods to shut down the engine, each without success Finally, the decision was taken to drown the engine with fire-fighting foam from the emergency services fire vehicles. The No. 1 engine was reported to have finally been shut down at 0653, about two hours and seven minutes after the aircraft landed."

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news