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Thu, Feb 09, 2012

EASA Orders Inspection Of All A380s

Inspections Of Affected Airplanes Have Led To A Broader EASA AD

EASA has expanded its mandatory inspection of wing rib feet on A380 airplanes to every aircraft in service, regardless of flight hours.

An AD posted by the European safety agency Wednesday mandates the inspection of "Airbus A380-841, A380-842, and A380-861 aeroplanes, all serial numbers."

The AD states:

Following an unscheduled internal inspection of an A380 wing, some rib feet have been found with cracks originating from the rib to skin panel attachment holes (Type 1 cracks according to Airbus All Operator Telex (AOT) terminology). Further to this finding, inspections were carried out on a number of other aeroplanes confirming the existence of these cracks. During one of those inspections, a new form of rib foot cracking originating from the forward and aft edges of the vertical web of the rib feet has been identified (Type 2 cracks according to Airbus AOT terminology).

This condition, if not detected and corrected, may lead to reduction of the structural integrity of the aeroplane.

EASA AD 2012-0013 required Detailed Visual Inspections (DVI) to detect cracks on the wing rib feet and required as well to repair them when applicable. Following issuance of EASA AD 2012-0013 it has been confirmed that Type 2 cracks may develop on other aeroplanes after a period of time of service. For the reasons described above, this AD, which supersedes EASA AD 2012- 0013, extends the applicability to all aeroplane serial numbers and requires accomplishment of High Frequency Eddy Current (HFEC) inspections of certain wing rib feet and accomplishment of applicable corrective actions.

This AD also requires that the inspection results are reported to Airbus.

This AD is considered to be a further interim action to address this condition. As a result of the on-going investigation, further mandatory actions may be necessary.

FMI: http://ad.easa.europa.eu/ad/2012-0026, www.airbus.com

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