Boeing and GE Address Icing Risk for GEnx Engines

AINsafety » December 2, 2013
December 2, 2013, 1:40 PM

Boeing and GE have warned companies operating Boeing 747-8 and 787 airliners powered by certain versions of General Electric’s GEnx engines about the risk of in-flight internal-engine icing that can reduce engine performance if aircraft wander too close to areas of significant precipitation, like thunderstorms at high altitudes. Engine models affected are the GEnx-2B on the 747-8 and the GEnx-1B on the 787 Dreamliner. Aircraft do not need to be flying in visible precipitation to be at risk, and the problem can occur even with engine anti-icing systems activated, according to the OEMs. The engine-icing issue was first reported early in October when a GE spokesman said the company had been notified of a half-dozen engine issues related to GEnx powerplants; he added that no one had been injured in any of the incidents. GE is at work on software changes to open and close the engines’ bleed-valve doors to prevent ice buildup behind the fan and to eject ice crystals before they enter the core section. While working on a permanent fix, Boeing and GE are warning pilots to circumnavigate thunderstorms by at least 50 miles, a much wider margin than normal. Based upon the new warnings, Japan Airlines decided last week to remove its 787s from service on both its Tokyo-Sydney and Tokyo-Delhi routes that cross areas of the equator where potentially large storms can develop.

Share this...

Please Register

In order to leave comments you will now need to be a registered user. This change in policy is to protect our site from an increased number of spam comments. Additionally, in the near future you will be able to better manage your AIN subscriptions via this registration system. If you already have an account, click here to log in. Otherwise, click here to register.