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UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 2:17 pm

http://s92838523.onlinehome.us/ua250803.jpg

Someone on another board took this picture on a UA 744 heading SYD-SFO on 8/25/03...any comments as to the cause or just about the situation in general?

Greg

PS. Is that technically a nacelle or a cowling?

[Edited 2004-03-07 06:18:27]
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wn700driver
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 2:49 pm

Birdstrike perhaps?

Either, depending on one's locale.
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L-188
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 2:59 pm

The whole thing is a Nacelle and the part that covers the engine is called the cowling, so both are appropriate.

DOn't see much bird remains there, maybe a crack that finally gave way in the face of being hit by 450MPH air.
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wn700driver
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 3:11 pm

L-188

Wouldn't slipstream on the outside & suction on the inside carry away bird remains?
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L-188
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 3:18 pm

Yeah, but there still should be blood streaks, and maybe a feather driven into that whole.

See a couple of birdstikes and there was always some evidence of it that survived.
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corey07850
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 3:29 pm

Did they say if the engine was shut down?

Whatever caused the damage looks to have been pretty violent. I highly doubt that a bird could do that much damage, especially since it's on the top of the engine (meaning the forward speed of the plane would not compound the damage).
 
wn700driver
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 3:37 pm

Yeh, I mean you all could be right about it not being a bird, but I just can't imagine anything much larger/denser than that doing that, and not doing a ton more damage in the process.

I guess there would be some blood, huh? My next-best guess would be debris or ice from an oncomming AC. But even that seems a bit unlikely.
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L-188
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 3:40 pm

Well I was thinking that maybe it was a crack in the fiberglass that kept getting more and more water in it during ground stops that at altitude kept freezing and making the crack bigger and worse.

finally the airflow got under it and it let go.
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air2gxs
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Sun Mar 07, 2004 10:45 pm

My guess would be an overpressure in the nacelle anti-ice system. thou I don't know the specifics of the -400 system, it would take a couple of failures to happen, the pressure regualting valave would have to fail and a blockage in the exhaust. Not unheard of, but unlikely.
 
EMBQA
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Mon Mar 08, 2004 12:50 am

Whatever caused the damage looks to have been pretty violent. I highly doubt that a bird could do that much damage, especially since it's on the top of the engine (meaning the forward speed of the plane would not compound the damage).

Don't take this as a put down, but you have a lot to learn about what a bird can do to an aircraft. That is NOTHING. I have seen leading edges completely destroyed by one song bird (just yesterday in fact). I've seen pictures of a goose that went clean through a DHC-8 leading edge...through the wing spar and ended up in the fuel tank. A Saab SF-340 that had the crown caved in and the overhead panel collapse onto the F/O by a flock of Snow Geese. A second SF-340 that hit a Snow Goose in the propeller, shot the bird through the fuselage and put a hole in the plane we could pass a basketball through....... Birds can ruin your whole day. Think of it this way..."Would you want to hit a 25lb brick at 400 miles an hour...?"
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musang
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Mon Mar 08, 2004 2:34 am

Amongst my hits, I've had one hit the crown above the centre windscreen, and the side of the nose on a couple of occasions. Saw these before impact, and none left any trace.

My point being simply that the absence of blood/feathers doesn't rule a birdstrike out.

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VC-10
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Mon Mar 08, 2004 3:39 am

This is what Canada Geese can do.







 
EMBQA
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Mon Mar 08, 2004 9:31 am

I've seen these photos before, including more.. and in the first photo above, the goose that made that hole went clean through and ended up in the Captain lap......!!!!!!
"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
 
corey07850
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Mon Mar 08, 2004 12:02 pm

EMBQA,

I was basing my point on the angle at which the bird would've had to been traveling to cause damage on top of the engine (nearly perpendicular to the forward motion of the plane). This means that the odds of a bird diving and hitting the plane are not very good.

Also, consider the fact that the plane was traveling SYD-SFO.... not many birds flying around over the Pacific.

Oh, and I've certainly seen what birds can do to a plane, and it's not pretty!  Smile
 
Mr.BA
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Mon Mar 08, 2004 1:53 pm

Man... what kind of geese was that to do such damage!? That certainly looks very bad. How fast was the aircraft travelling at?
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EMBQA
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Mon Mar 08, 2004 2:31 pm

MrBA......2 of the most common large bird strikes here in the US involve Snow Geese and Canada Geese. Both are quite large and can have up to a 70" wing span and I'll guess at 20-30lbs.
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broke
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RE: UA 744 W/ Large Hole In Engine Nacelle/Cowling...

Tue Mar 09, 2004 2:20 am

It appears that a composite honeycomb cell panel failed. It may have been disbonded or may have been blown open by a ruptured pneumatic duct in the nose cowl or a combination of both, my guess.

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