18 Nov 2010

Up to 40 Airbus engines to be replaced globally - Qantas

8:49 pm on 18 November 2010

Australian airline Qantas says up to 40 Rolls-Royce engines on Airbus A380 superjumbos worldwide will need to be replaced.

Chief executive Alan Joyce was speaking two weeks after a Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engine on a Qantas A380 exploded in mid-air, forcing an emergency landing, the BBC reports.

Qantas has grounded its six A380s since the incident.

The Trent 900 engines are used on 20 A380s operated by Qantas, Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines. Each plane has four of the engines.

Mr Joyce told reporters at Sydney airport Qantas had already replaced three engines on its planes.

He says Qantas understands from Airbus and Rolls-Royce the number of engines to be replaced is about 40.

The ABC reports Qantas has indicated up to 14 Rolls Royce engines on its fleet will need to be replaced.

Pilots defend Qantas

The Australian and International Pilots Association is defending the reputation of Qantas.

Since the Singapore incident, Qantas has had a string of problems with other planes, including two incidents of engine failure, an electrical fault on a flight between Sydney to Buenos Aires and a lightning strike near Alice Springs.

Pilots Association vice president Richard Woodward, an A380 pilot, says Qantas is going to great lengths to maintain its reputation for safety.