FAA Formalizing V2500 Disk Inspection Program

Nearly 1,000 disks in U.S. alone must be checked

The FAA is formalizing a fleetwide inspection program of International Aero Engines V2500 disks supplied by Avio Aero based on the findings from a 2014 inflight shutdown and fire onboard a JetBlue Airways Airbus A320.

The program, communicated by IAE in a February service bulletin, covers an estimated 947 hubs on 668 engines flying on U.S.-registered aircraft, a draft version of the FAA airworthiness directive says. The agency assumes that 568 hubs will need replacement at a total cost of $26.3 million.

The inspection deadlines vary based on each hub’s service history. The newest hubs must be checked before they reach 13,000 cycles, while those with more than 15,000 cycles must be checked within 1,500 cycles. 

IAE designed the inspection program so it could be performed during a scheduled shop visit.

The JetBlue flight’s No. 2 engine failed during climb-out from Long Beach, California, on Sept. 18, 2014, triggering an undercowl fire that sent smoke into the cabin. The crew turned back and landed safely at the airport.

A detailed probe of the fractured high-pressure turbine stage 2 disk by IAE identified several manufacturing deficiencies, including one that was leaving tool marks on disks. Investigators pinpointed one of these marks as the starting point for the fracture. They also discovered a similar anomaly on stage 1 disks.

Avio has implemented several changes to correct the manufacturing deficiencies, the NTSB report on the incident found. The company has made more than 4,000 V2500 stage 1 and 2 disks. 

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