Rolls-Royce ups estimate to fix Boeing Dreamliner engines

Pat Wise
April 14, 2018

Engineering giant Rolls-Royce has said it will carry out more rigorous engine inspection after ongoing issues with the Trent 1000 engine used for Boeing's 787s, warning of disruption for its customers.

The warning by Rolls-Royce comes ahead of anticipated announcements by U.S. and European aviation regulators, who are expected to issue guidance to airlines as soon as Friday. Now inspections must be carried out after every 200 flight cycles.

It says, however, that the need for more regular inspections will result in higher cash costs that those in its previous financial guidance.

Rolls-Royce has warned that extra checks on one of its plane engines will add unexpected costs and cause further disruption for airlines including BA, Virgin and Norwegian. Citigroup restated a "buy" rating and issued a GBX 1,060 ($14.98) price target on shares of Rolls-Royce in a research report on Thursday, March 8th.

New inspections will lead to additional disruption for the 380 Package C engines now in-service with airlines.

Boeing said that about 25% of the Dreamliners flying were powered by the engine and it was deploying support teams to help to manage service disruptions.

"Our team of technical experts and service engineers is working around the clock to ensure we return them to full service as soon as possible", he said.

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"We will be working closely with Boeing and affected airlines to minimise disruption wherever possible", Chief Executive Warren East said.

This type of check is usually required after reaching making 2000 one-way flights, however Roll-Royce are requiring them to now be checked after 300 flights.

"It's disappointing and frustrating that our new aircraft don't work the way they are supposed to", spokesman Lasse Sandaker-Nilsen said, adding that it had cancelled a flight from Paris to NY next week as a result.

The manufacturer said the increased inspections were driven by "our further understanding of the durability of the Trent 1000 Package C compressor".

"Trent 1000 Package C engines that have operated fewer than 300 cycles are unaffected by this directive, " it said.

It stresses that neither the Trent 1000 TEN powerplant nor the Package B version of the engine will be affected by the new inspections.

In March, Rolls said the cash hit from the problem should hit a peak of £340 million in 2018 before falling in 2019.

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