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All A320 Neo operators in compliance with weight balance directives, says DGCA

At present Indigo, Goair, Air India and Vistara operate the Neo-engine powered A320 planes.

September 19, 2019 / 09:22 AM IST
Planes parked at IGI airport in New Delhi

Planes parked at IGI airport in New Delhi

The Director-General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on September 18 said all the domestic airlines operating the A320 family aircraft with Neo engines are in "compliance" with its instructions on limiting the weight balance (centre of gravity envelope) directives.

The aviation regulator recently issued instructions to all airlines operating the A320/321 family of planes powered by Neo engines on limiting the centre of gravity envelope (average of where an aircraft weight is located) to address the loading conditions following an airworthiness directive from the European Aviation Safety Regulator (EASA).

At present Indigo, Goair, Air India and Vistara operate the Neo-engine powered A320 planes.

As of August 30, Indigo and Goair had 92 and 35 A320 Neos respectively powered by the troubled PW engines. Besides, Indigo also has five A321 Neos.

Air India and Vistara have 27 and 10 CFM engine-powered A320 Neo planes.


It can be recalled that an Istanbul-bound Indigo flight from New Delhi had to take off without any passenger baggage on September 15 and the airline informed that passengers on arrival that luggage was not carried due to "operational reasons."

"Based on the EASA airworthiness directives, we issued instructions to all operators of A320/321 Neos on limiting the centre of gravity envelope to address the loading conditions. We have carried out random inspections on 28 A320 Neo family aircraft belonging to all four operators in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Bangalore to confirm their compliance of the instructions and the same have been found in order," the DGCA tweeted.

The regulator also said it will continue to monitor the compliance of the same going forward on a regular basis.

According to the EASA airworthiness directive 2019 issued on July 31, "an analysis of the behaviour and flight control laws of the A320 Neo discovered a reduced efficiency of the angle of attack protection when the aircraft is set in certain flight configurations."

"This condition, although never encountered during operations, if not corrected, could lead to excessive pitch attitude, possibly resulting in increased flight crew workload," it said.

To address this potential unsafe condition, EASA said, Airbus has restricted the centre of gravity envelope with an aircraft flight manual temporary revision.
first published: Sep 18, 2019 08:40 pm

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