cmf
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FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:27 pm

With FAA for the most part requiring 3 and 4 engine aircrafts follow the same ETOPS rules as twins; Are they required to divert with one engine out or may they still continue to destination? (Of course provided they have enough fuel based on the new situation)

How much of the ETOPS changes have other authorities implemented?
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wilco737
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:50 pm

Quoting cmf (Thread starter):
Are they required to divert with one engine out or may they still continue to destination? (Of course provided they have enough fuel based on the new situation)

Depends on the engine failure. If it is a fire, better land soon, if it is only precautionary shutdown, you can check for the next suitable airport. That means you are allowed to continue and look for a proper airport.
To continue to destination would be possible if fuel is sufficient and it is the safer course of action.

Sometimes airlines want their airplanes at some special airport where support and mechanics are available and maybe even heading in the direction of the destination: i.e.: LAX-FRA. Engine failure shortly after take off. Enough fuel to fly to FRA? doubtful. FLying across the atlantic? maybe, maybe not. Calling the company: Where do you want us? Circling over LAX and dumping 60-80 tons of fuel? Continue to ORD or JFK? better rebooking possibility for the passengers, mechanical support etc etc.

As you have fuel for many hours you have a while to think about it and make the best decision.

If you are in rush (fire etc) land ASAP!!!

wilco737
  
 
yeelep
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Mon Nov 14, 2011 11:25 pm

From Advisory Circular AC 120-42B.

If no more than one engine is shut down on an airplane that has three or more engines, § 121.565 permits the PIC to fly beyond the nearest suitable airport in point of time if the PIC determines that doing so is as safe as landing at the nearest suitable airport. In making decision to fly beyond the nearest suitable airport, the PIC should consider all relevant factors and, in addition, consider the possible difficulties that may occur if the flight is continued beyothe nearest suitable airport. When an airplane with more than two engines bypasses a suitable alternate, the PIC should carefully weigh the risk associated with the next possible failure, wcould complicate or compound the current engine inoperative condition. The next possible failure could be a system failure or another engine failure, which in either case, would affect crew workload and their possible success in completing the associated abnormal approach alanding procedures.
 
cmf
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 12:34 am

Thanks!

With this option still available why the big stink about the BA LAX(?) to LHR a few years ago?

Quoting wilco737 (Reply 1):
If you are in rush (fire etc) land ASAP!!!

I knew I should have been much more specific  
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tdscanuck
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:36 am

Quoting cmf (Reply 3):
With this option still available why the big stink about the BA LAX(?) to LHR a few years ago?

It's this part:

Quoting yeelep (Reply 2):
In making decision to fly beyond the nearest suitable airport, the PIC should consider all relevant factors and, in addition, consider the possible difficulties that may occur if the flight is continued beyothe nearest suitable airport.

By electing to fly ETOPS over the Atlantic with one engine already down, the consequences of the second failure become much more significant.

Tom.
 
Fabo
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 1:36 pm

There is also talk about LO 767 continuing to WAW instead of returning to EWR or other suitable alternate in vicinty. I believe the argumentation is similar to this case - in-flight shutdown without any other failures is in my non-pilot opinion comparable to losing a (for flight itself) non-essential hydraulic system.
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citationjet
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 3:37 pm

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 4):
Quoting cmf (Reply 3):
With this option still available why the big stink about the BA LAX(?) to LHR a few years ago?

It's this part:

Quoting yeelep (Reply 2):
In making decision to fly beyond the nearest suitable airport, the PIC should consider all relevant factors and, in addition, consider the possible difficulties that may occur if the flight is continued beyothe nearest suitable airport.

The BA flight have to divert and land in MAN because they ran low on fuel. That was part of the "big stink".

Link to AAIB report on the BA 747 diversion to MAN:
http://www.aaib.gov.uk/cms_resources...ng%20747-436,%20G-BNLG%2006-06.pdf

[Edited 2011-11-15 07:42:45]
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David L
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:16 pm

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 6):
The BA flight have to divert and land in MAN because they ran low on fuel.

To be more specific, the crew didn't think they had enough fuel available to land at LHR with the required reserves remaining. I believe BA's documentation has since been updated to make it clearer how to get at all the fuel after shutting down an engine. They didn't exactly head out over the Atlantic with their eyes shut and their fingers crossed.  
 
citationjet
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:48 pm

Quoting David L (Reply 7):
Quoting CitationJet (Reply 6):
The BA flight have to divert and land in MAN because they ran low on fuel.

To be more specific, the crew didn't think they had enough fuel available to land at LHR with the required reserves remaining.

The AAIB report is interesting reading. At 100 ft AGL out of LAX there was an audible sound from the engine and a reduction in engine EPR. At 1,500 ft they declared "PAN" to LAX ATC and shut down #2 engine. After consulting fuel prediction, considering an overweight landing, company policy, and manufacturer's QRH, they decided to continue the flight. They cancelled the "PAN" with LAX. The engine out fuel prediction indicated landing in LHR with 7 tons of fuel, compared to the required minimum of 4.5 tons. Prior to the Atlantic crossing the FMC predicted 7 to 7.5 tons of fuel at landing in LHR. Over Ireland the predicted fuel was 6.5 tons at LHR. During descent into MAN the crew became concerned that the fuel was not transferring properly. They declared "PAN" with MAN ATC. Then they received a "Fuel Qty Low" message and they declared "MAYDAY" to MAN ATC. The plane left LAX with 119 tons of fuel, and arrived on the stand in MAN with 4.9 tons of fuel. The plane was later refuelled and 3 engine ferried to LHR by a crew qualified for 3 engine flghts.
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yeelep
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 8:12 pm

Quoting Fabo (Reply 5):

There is also talk about LO 767 continuing to WAW instead of returning to EWR or other suitable alternate in vicinty. I believe the argumentation is similar to this case - in-flight shutdown without any other failures is in my non-pilot opinion comparable to losing a (for flight itself) non-essential hydraulic system.

If an engine fails or is shut down in flight, FAA regulations require the pilot in command (PIC) of a twin-engine jetliner to land at the nearest suitable airport, in terms of flight time, at which a safe landing can be made. If the airport of origin is nearest, an air turnback is performed. If the destination airport is nearest, the airplane continues on to land as planned. In all other instances, a diversion must be performed to an en route alternate airport.

I'm not familiar with the incident, so I don't know at what point in the flight the IFSD occurred. I wonder which regulatory body would have jurisdiction over the flight. I imagine the pilots/Airline may have been slapped pretty hard.

Remember, when a IFSD occurs, you also lose a hydraulic, electrical and pneumatic source.
 
cmf
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 9:59 pm

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 4):
By electing to fly ETOPS over the Atlantic with one engine already down, the consequences of the second failure become much more significant.

Reading the AAIB report CitationJet provided it seems they did not have a problem with the decisions made at various points of the flight. They did include one relevant recommendation but it only addresses the guidance provided by agencies.

Safety Recommendation 2006-018 It is recommended that the Civil Aviation Authority and the Federal Aviation Administration, in conjunction with other relevant agencies, should review the policy on flight cont

Do I read it right?

[Edited 2011-11-15 14:00:28]
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Fabo
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Tue Nov 15, 2011 10:10 pm

Quoting yeelep (Reply 10):
I'm not familiar with the incident, so I don't know at what point in the flight the IFSD occurred. I wonder which regulatory body would have jurisdiction over the flight. I imagine the pilots/Airline may have been slapped pretty hard.

Actually the LO 767 I am talking about did not suffer IFSD, rather a single hydraulic failure, which I (as a layman) compare to IFSD of one engine on a four holer.
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Gemuser
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 12:05 am

Quoting yeelep (Reply 10):
If an engine fails or is shut down in flight, FAA regulations require the pilot in command (PIC) of a twin-engine jetliner to land at the nearest suitable airport, in terms of flight time, at which a safe landing can be made.

And that affects a Polish registered and operated aircraft how?

Whatever the case the LOT pilot would follow Polish regulations and LOTs operations manual.

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David L
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 10:46 am

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 8):

   Thanks for the summary.

Quoting cmf (Reply 11):
Do I read it right?

As I understand it, yes. From the long discussions about it here, it seems that Boeing, BA, the UK CAA and many non-US based pilots with long haul experience didn't see anything wrong with what they did while the FAA and many US-based pilots disagreed. It all seems to have hinged on an FAR that's open to interpretation - I don't know if it's been reworded since. The upshot was that BA promised not to do it again in US airspace.
 
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zeke
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 11:49 am

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 6):

The BA flight have to divert and land in MAN because they ran low on fuel.

Not really, more to the point they could not get access to all the fuel they had onboard.

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 8):
The plane was later refuelled and 3 engine ferried to LHR by a crew qualified for 3 engine flghts.

And the same aircraft had another engine failure between SIN and LHR about a week later, and flew 3 engines to LHR without an issue.

Quoting yeelep (Reply 10):

If an engine fails or is shut down in flight, FAA regulations require the pilot in command (PIC) of a twin-engine jetliner to land at the nearest suitable airport, in terms of flight time, at which a safe landing can be made.

No, that is not correct, the PIC needs to divert to the nearest suitable, not the nearest. No requirement to go to the closest airport in terms of time.

Quoting yeelep (Reply 10):
If the airport of origin is nearest, an air turnback is performed. If the destination airport is nearest, the airplane continues on to land as planned. In all other instances, a diversion must be performed to an en route alternate airport.

It is always to the nearest suitable, what is defined as "suitable" depends on where you have a licence from and the airline you work for. I am legally allowed to takeoff from airports in Wx conditions that I would not be able to return to in a twin, in such cases we plan a departure alternate, that departure alternate may have nothing to do with the departure, destination, or being enroute, it maybe in the opposite direction.
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citationjet
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 1:18 pm

Quoting zeke (Reply 15):
Quoting CitationJet (Reply 6):

The BA flight have to divert and land in MAN because they ran low on fuel.

Not really, more to the point they could not get access to all the fuel they had onboard.

Page 20 of the report states that the crew determined a minumum landing fuel of 6.5 tons on arrival at LHR. In reality they landed in MAN with 4.9 tons of fuel. They landed short of their final destination with less than the minumum landing fuel on board. I would call that running low on fuel.
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David L
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 7:36 pm

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 16):
Page 20 of the report states that the crew determined a minumum landing fuel of 6.5 tons on arrival at LHR. In reality they landed in MAN with 4.9 tons of fuel. They landed short of their final destination with less than the minumum landing fuel on board. I would call that running low on fuel.

But the required minimum was 4.5 tonnes, as you noted here:

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 8):
The engine out fuel prediction indicated landing in LHR with 7 tons of fuel, compared to the required minimum of 4.5 tons.

The crew monitored the fuel all the way and when they thought they weren't going to arrive at LHR with the extra reserves they had decided to add on top of the required minimum, they diverted and landed at MAN with more than the required minimum. An inconvenience to the passengers, of course, but was it any more inconvenient than a return to LAX, especially given that, until quite late, it looked as though they'd be able to complete the entire flight?
 
bond007
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 8:03 pm

Quoting zeke (Reply 15):

Quoting yeelep (Reply 10):

If an engine fails or is shut down in flight, FAA regulations require the pilot in command (PIC) of a twin-engine jetliner to land at the nearest suitable airport, in terms of flight time, at which a safe landing can be made.

No, that is not correct, the PIC needs to divert to the nearest suitable, not the nearest. No requirement to go to the closest airport in terms of time.

Well, that's exactly what he said!


Quoting David L (Reply 17):
An inconvenience to the passengers, of course, but was it any more inconvenient than a return to LAX,

Personally, as a pilot and a passenger, I might have also included in my decision to go ahead, not only the fact that the aircraft might be technically safe to continue, but the fact that all my passengers knew we had an engine problem, heard the bangs, and many saw flames coming from the engine ... and then flew another 10hrs - a trip with 2 PAN calls, and one MAYDAY. I would say a large number of passengers felt more than 'inconvenienced'. But I wasn't there, of course.



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Pihero
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 10:37 pm

This is beating a dead horse and no one except in the US found anything to say about that crew decision.

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 9):
The Los Angeles ATC tapes from BA's LAX departure obtained by the WSJ under the FOI. LAX ATC seemed amazed that the BA flight continued after what they saw with the engine flames.

Irrelevant : Surges could be quite spectacular in terms of "pyrotechnics" but in no way are consistent with fire. The crew, having correctly diagnosed the phenomenon - and with the eye-witness report of another passengering pilot - made the decision to fly on to LHR in agreement with 1/- approved procedures, 2/ safety concerns regarding fuel, terrain and alternates, 3/- airline OCC, 4/- weather forecast.
The only problem they encountered was the stronger than expected headwinds and the estimated fuel at destination ; once again, that crew made a conservative decision to divert to MAN while in fact they should have had enough to fly on to LHR. And then,a deliberate MAYDAY declaration which they really didn't need ( a low qty message is definitely NOT a low fuel situation which would have warranted the MAYDAY sit).There hasn't been a single momùent when those passengers were put into a dangerous situation by the crew actions, even when they didn't understand the reason they couldn't balance the tanks, they followed the low qty situation and opened all pumps and xfeeds, making certain that the engines would be fed till the tanks were ran dry.
As for flights with multiple failures... I'd rather have a crew that plans for the worst at all times instead of the flippant ones.
I did once cross Northern America between the Bay of Hudson and Los Angeles with an engine shut down : had to descend some 4000 ft and increaser our flight time by some 25 minutes. ATC, both Canadian and US, was of course advised and saw nothing wrong with what we were doing (as a matter of fact, I've never seen so many direct routings than on that day !) and the purser, who could read the ETA on the MCDU was incensed that we did not tell him they could have had that extra sack time ! Never understood why we flew so slow...

As for the suitable airport definition, it is never in terms of flight time.
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yeelep
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 10:57 pm

Quoting Pihero (Reply 19):
As for the suitable airport definition, it is never in terms of flight time.

From reading this thread. Nowhere has the definition of suitable airport been made. Just that the closest in terms of flight time "suitable" airport must be used in the case of a diversion. Is this incorrect?
 
David L
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 10:59 pm

Quoting bond007 (Reply 18):
I would say a large number of passengers felt more than 'inconvenienced'. But I wasn't there, of course.

But that's not a safety issue, it's a customer service issue between BA and its passengers. I'm pretty sure the crew would have advised the passengers of the situation.
 
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 11:01 pm

Quoting Pihero (Reply 19):
I did once cross Northern America between the Bay of Hudson and Los Angeles with an engine shut down

How long ago? Before or after 777?
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lowrider
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 11:43 pm

Quoting David L (Reply 14):
It all seems to have hinged on an FAR that's open to interpretation - I don't know if it's been reworded since.

The FAA's policy since is that a 3 or 4 engine aircraft, following the failure of 1 engine, need not land at the nearest suitable airport if in the opinion of the PIC (and dispatcher if applicable) continuing is not more dangerous than returning to land. I believe that, in the case of BA, the forecast at the destination and alternates was good, there was no significant enroute weather, and terrain/drift down requirements were not restrictive. When I first heard about it, I was not sure the crew made the best decision, but with the benefit of more experience, I now don't see a significant problem with it.
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bond007
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Wed Nov 16, 2011 11:58 pm

Quoting David L (Reply 21):
But that's not a safety issue, it's a customer service issue between BA and its passengers. I'm pretty sure the crew would have advised the passengers of the situation.

No, I didn't mean to suggest it was a safety issue, but the average passenger, even after being told 'everything is OK', would IMO still feel very uncomfortabe after hearing bangs, seeing flames, and knowing an engine is shutdown ... having to fly another 10hrs across the Atlantic. In fact I'm sure some of them were terrified.

Jimbo

[Edited 2011-11-16 15:59:56]
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Pihero
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:29 am

Quoting cmf (Reply 22):
How long ago? Before or after 777?

March 1995 on a 744.

Quoting yeelep (Reply 20):

From reading this thread. Nowhere has the definition of suitable airport been made.


From the horse's mouth in Toulouse :

ETOPS operations
ETOPS operations apply to all flights conducted in a twin-engined aircraft
over a route that contains a point further than 60 minutes flying time from an
adequate airport. Calculation of the corresponding ‘60 min’ circles must be
done in line with the applicable regulation (see chapter 3 paragraph 1).
ETOPS operations requires specific regulations and operational procedures
application.

Adequate airport
An airport is considered "adequate" for the operator when it satisfies the
aircraft performance requirements applicable at the expected landing weight.
It must then be acknowledged by the local operational authorities.

It is worth noting that it is not necessary to meet the runway pavement
requirements normally to be considered for the regular use of an airport. In
accordance with the provisions of the ICAO Convention - Annex 14 and
ICAO Airport Manual (Document 9157 - AN/91), the aircraft ACN (Aircraft
Classification Number) is allowed to exceed the runway PCN (Pavement
Classification Number), when an airport is used in case of emergency.

The amount of possible exceedance can be obtained from the above
referenced ICAO document or from each individual national or local airport
authority.

The following considerations should be met at the expected time of use:
− availability of the airport,
− overflying and landing authorizations,
− capability of ground operational assistance (ATC, meteorological and air
information services offices, lighting.),
− availability of navaids such as ILS, VOR, NDB (at least one let-down
navaid must be available for an instrument approach),
− airport category for rescue and fire fighting (ICAO Doc 9137 - AN/898
Part 1).

The following criteria may also be considered:
− capability of technical assistance,
− capability of handling and catering (fuel, food, etc.),
− ability to receive and accommodate the passengers,
− other particular requirements applicable to each individual operator.

Suitable airport
A suitable airport for dispatch purposes is an airport confirmed to be
adequate which satisfies the ETOPS dispatch weather requirements in
terms of ceiling and visibility minima (refer to weather reports and forecasts)
within a validity period. This period opens one hour before the earliest
Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA) at the airport and closes one hour after the
latest ETA. In addition, cross-wind forecasts must also be checked to be
acceptable for the same validity period.

Field conditions should also ensure that a safe landing can be accomplished
with one engine and / or airframe system inoperative (refer to possible
NOTAMs, SNOWTAMs, approach procedure modification).

Diversion / en-route alternate airport
A "diversion" airport, also called "en-route alternate" airport, is an adequate /
suitable airport to which a diversion can be accomplished.


Just to prove that a single word could mean a lot.

[Edited 2011-11-16 16:31:18]
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Jetlagged
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:33 am

The imposition of EROPS rules on existing 3 and 4 engined aircraft seems ill thought out to me, as well as unfair. Such aircraft were certified to fly these distances as designed under the rules at the time, which obviously included single engine failures over water. When contemplating the risk of an engine failure I'd rather be in a 747 with one engine out over the Atlantic than a twin with no engines out. The 747 on 2 engines can't be worse off than the twin on 1 and might be better off. The multiple systems redundancy inherent in a 3 or 4 engined aircraft caters for concerns created by EROPS with twin engined aircraft.
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zeke
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:14 am

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 16):
In reality they landed in MAN with 4.9 tons of fuel.

Actually 5.8 t.

Quoting CitationJet (Reply 16):
They landed short of their final destination with less than the minumum landing fuel on board.

Incorrect, they touched down with 5.8t, the minimum required is 4.5t which is the 30 minutes reserve. You are only required to land with that fuel, no requirement exists that you need to shutdown with that much fuel.

As I stated above the real concern was that they thought they could not get access to the fuel that had onboard, from the report "During the descent towards Manchester, the crew became concerned that fuel did not appear to be feeding from No 2 tank, even with selective switching of the main pumps within the fuel system. With the possibility that this fuel might be unusable, which would result in the aircraft landing with less than the final reserve fuel, the commander declared a PAN call to ATC."

Quoting bond007 (Reply 18):

Well, that's exactly what he said!

Time is not a factor.

Quoting yeelep (Reply 20):
Just that the closest in terms of flight time "suitable" airport must be used in the case of a diversion. Is this incorrect?

There are two types of suitable, one type of suitable is as Pherio has described in reply 25, this is the pre-dispatch definition of suitable, it ensures the aircraft is flight planned legally in the case of an ETOPS sector. ETOPS is really a pre flight planning consideration, once airborne, most of it can be ignored. For example if weather at one of the enroute alternates goes below minima, or closes, we are not going to turn the aircraft around, we will endeavour to find another suitable airport to replace it, however we will not divert a perfectly serviceable aircraft for an academic exercise.

Also in term of ETOPS, the diversions are calculated at or close to Vmo/Mmo, if we do have an engine failure, there is no requirement to actually fly the aircraft at Vmo/Mmo, or to reach the diversion airport within the approved ETOPS specified diversion time. That is also an academic planning exercise, in real life the crew will look after the remaining engine and the airframe.

When diverting for a mechanical issue I would take a number of factors into consideration, the nature of the malfunction and possible mechanical difficulties which may be encountered, operational effect of an inoperative system or systems, relative flight times to airports available for landing, flight time and distance to the airport selected for landing relative to the ETOPS approval limit, altitude, aircraft weight and remaining useable fuel at the time of system failure or malfunction, weather conditions en-route and at any available ERA, ATC limitations, en-route and selected ERA terrain, crew familiarity with the airport.

For example I would happily fly 250 nm past an airport at night that is down a valley with higher terrain without a precision approach in marginal weather that I have never been to before with no ATC, over a normal company destination that I am familiar with that has a precision approach and all the services. What drives my decision of where to divert is on the balance of everything what is safest option, not what is quickest, an extra 30 minutes in a single engine cruise is nothing, an extra few minutes below LSALT single engine can be deadly.
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cmf
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:17 am

Quoting Pihero (Reply 25):
March 1995 on a 744.

So before this country became hostile to passenger operations with more than two engines  


Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 26):
The imposition of EROPS rules on existing 3 and 4 engined aircraft seems ill thought out to me

From what I can see there are minimal changes as it relates to engines. I do appreciate the requirement to have enough fire suppression etc and also think most other changes makes sense.
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bond007
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:39 am

Quoting zeke (Reply 27):
Quoting bond007 (Reply 18):

Well, that's exactly what he said!

Time is not a factor.
Quoting zeke (Reply 27):
What drives my decision of where to divert is on the balance of everything what is safest option, not what is quickest,

I think you are just misunderstanding what was said ... "nearest suitable airport, in terms of flight time"

You should land at the nearest suitable airport ... and "nearest" means in terms of flight time, not distance.



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Starlionblue
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:51 am

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 26):
The 747 on 2 engines can't be worse off than the twin on 1 and might be better off. The multiple systems redundancy inherent in a 3 or 4 engined aircraft caters for concerns created by EROPS with twin engined aircraft.

Current twins were designed with one engine operation in mind. The systems redundancy you speak of is there. A 777, designed in the 90s, on one engine is probably better off than a 744, developed in the 80s from a 60s design, on two engines.
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yeelep
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:34 am

Quoting Pihero (Reply 25):
Just to prove that a single word could mean a lot.

Right, and I believe Iv'e been using the term suitable airport as defined in your post. So what's your point.
 
yeelep
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 3:25 am

Quoting zeke (Reply 27):
For example I would happily fly 250 nm past an airport at night that is down a valley with higher terrain without a precision approach in marginal weather that I have never been to before with no ATC, over a normal company destination that I am familiar with that has a precision approach and all the services. What drives my decision of where to divert is on the balance of everything what is safest option, not what is quickest, an extra 30 minutes in a single engine cruise is nothing, an extra few minutes below LSALT single engine can be deadly.

So, as PIC you are diverting to the closest airport you deemed suitable, its still the closest one. What if you did the same, but the only difference between the airports was the further airport had maintenance or some other preferable but not required service. Would that get you in hot water with the governing body of choice?
 
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zeke
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:17 am

Quoting yeelep (Reply 32):
What if you did the same, but the only difference between the airports was the further airport had maintenance or some other preferable but not required service. Would that get you in hot water with the governing body of choice?

Extending the flight time for better maintenance on one engine, yep, lots of hot water in a twin. On a quad, not an issue.

A feature of the new ETOPS rules for beyond 240 minutes is that airlines will now also have to take into account suitable accommodation for the passengers. A number of diversion fields are currently in use where the outside temperature is a significant hazard to human health. Since this is incorporated into the new rules, I do not think that is a flight was extended slightly so that passengers not only got on the ground safely, but did not die from exposure after landing, i.e. another passenger safety consideration would be of much concern to the authorities.

I guess I need to make this clear, as far as I am concerned, what is the safest option given all the different considerations is the most suitable for me. What weight one places on the various considerations is personal opinion. Cost of repair and ease of maintenance are things pilots are not responsible for, and in my view should not even be considerations.
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tdscanuck
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:20 am

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 26):
The imposition of EROPS rules on existing 3 and 4 engined aircraft seems ill thought out to me, as well as unfair.

It's basically a recognition of two things:
-An ISFD is a bad thing on any aircraft, regardless of number of engines, and the ETOPS regulations have been extremely successful at driving down the ISFD rate
-The scrutiny on ETOPS uncovered several systems issues that have nothing to do with propulsion but are inherent to long diversions, like cargo fire suppression, that were not considered on the original 3/4 engine regulations. A fire doesn't know how many engines you have.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 26):
Such aircraft were certified to fly these distances as designed under the rules at the time, which obviously included single engine failures over water.

Yes, but using ETOPS maintenance principles will reduce your ISFD rate on any aircraft, which is a good thing whether you've got 2/3/4 engines. And the original certification rules didn't cover some other failures unrelated to the engine itself that could get a 3/4 engine aircraft in trouble on a long diversion.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 26):
The 747 on 2 engines can't be worse off than the twin on 1 and might be better off.

A 747 on 2 engines is considerably worse off. Purely from a thrust standpoint, a twin with an engine out has enough power to do everything it needs to do, up to and including a single-engine go-around. A quad with two engines out is 33% below their thrust requirements to accomplish all maneuvers that may be required.

On top of that, thanks to the redundancy built in in order to get an ETOPS-twin in the first place, you will typically have more functioning systems on a single-engine ETOPS twin than you will on a quad with two engines down.

Quoting zeke (Reply 27):
Also in term of ETOPS, the diversions are calculated at or close to Vmo/Mmo

Really?! What twin out there is even capable of operating for any duration at Vmo/Mmo on a single engine? When we do our ETOPS range circles it's at single-engine LRC, nowhere close to Mmo.

Tom.
 
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Jetlagged
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:25 am

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 30):
Current twins were designed with one engine operation in mind. The systems redundancy you speak of is there. A 777, designed in the 90s, on one engine is probably better off than a 744, developed in the 80s from a 60s design, on two engines.

Yes I know modern EROPS twins have that redundancy, though non-EROPS twins don't. All 744s, DC10s and MD11s have the required redundancy. My point was about retrospectively imposing EROPS rules on existing designs already certified to operate over such distances being wrong. EROPS was invented to allow twins to do the same as trijets and quads, now it seems the twin lobby want their four engined competitors to have the same limits twins have. I disagree about the 744 redundancy compared to a 777. The original 747 also had multiple redundancy built in. With two engines out you can still have four hyd systems full operational and all electrical busses powered.
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tdscanuck
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:33 am

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 35):
All 744s, DC10s and MD11s have the required redundancy.

No, they don't. Those aircraft are missing some capabilities of ETOPS twins. One trivial example is redundant crossfeed.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 35):
My point was about retrospectively imposing EROPS rules on existing designs already certified to operate over such distances being wrong.

They weren't certified to the same standards. The twin standards were more stringent, for powerplant stuff (which isn't as relevant for 3/4 engine jets) *and* systems and flight planning stuff (which is just as relevant for 3/4 engine jets). The current changes drive the 3/4 engine jets to use the same systems/flight planning requirements as the twins, which just makes sense.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 35):
now it seems the twin lobby want their four engined competitors to have the same limits twins have.

Not exactly...the time limits are different between the twins and quads and, in the case of engine-independant issues, why should twins have to maintain a higher level of safety for the same mission?

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 35):
I disagree about the 744 redundancy compared to a 777. The original 747 also had multiple redundancy built in. With two engines out you can still have four hyd systems full operational and all electrical busses powered.

You won't have full capacity on two hydraulic systems (you'll have full pressure but not full flow capability) and, although all buses will be powered, you won't have enough power to keep everything going and you will load shed systems.

Tom.
 
yeelep
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 6:11 am

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 34):
Yes, but using ETOPS maintenance principles will reduce your ISFD rate on any aircraft, which is a good thing whether you've got 2/3/4 engines. And the original certification rules didn't cover some other failures unrelated to the engine itself that could get a 3/4 engine aircraft in trouble on a long diversion.

As the FAA explains in the preamble to ETOPS 2007 rulemaking:
The FAA strongly believes that all operators would benefit from an ETOPS maintenance program. However, the FAA agrees with many of the commenters that the cost of implementing this new requirement for airplanes with more than two engines would be significant. The FAA has determined that this cost cannot be justified based on the current level of safety achieved by the combination of engine reliability and the engine redundancy of this fleet of airplanes.

The only physical changes to the planes I'm aware of are to the cargo fire suppression and communications.

Of course other jurisdictions may have different requirements or I missed something.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 26):
The imposition of EROPS rules on existing 3 and 4 engined aircraft seems ill thought out to me, as well as unfair. Such aircraft were certified to fly these distances as designed under the rules at the time, which obviously included single engine failures over water. When contemplating the risk of an engine failure I'd rather be in a 747 with one engine out over the Atlantic than a twin with no engines out. The 747 on 2 engines can't be worse off than the twin on 1 and might be better off. The multiple systems redundancy inherent in a 3 or 4 engined aircraft caters for concerns created by EROPS with twin engined aircraft.

It baffles me that you would rather have your beloved pre-ETOPS/EROPS tri/quad engine aircraft flying around in a less safe condition than the hated twins. Examples of which is safer: Max. duration diversion with one engine shutdown; with cabin depressurization; with cargo fire. 2 to 1 in favor of the twin.
 
David L
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:55 am

Quoting lowrider (Reply 23):

Your views agree with what I've deduced, on balance, from listening to the pros on that incident (outside the USA, anyway   ). Nevertheless, the FAA took exception to the way their FAR had been interpreted. I'd have thought it would be helpful to all concerned if they either made the regulation tighter, to make it clearer how they expect it to be interpreted, or they simply accept that it is open to interpretation as it stands.

Quoting bond007 (Reply 24):
but the average passenger, even after being told 'everything is OK', would IMO still feel very uncomfortabe after hearing bangs, seeing flames, and knowing an engine is shutdown

The "inconvenience" I mentioned was in reference to the difference between landing at MAN versus LHR. The inconvenience didn't begin until it was decided to divert to MAN. I didn't mean to suggest that there was nothing more than inconvenience at any point.  

While some might have been terrified for a while after the initial event, couldn't the same could be said when an aircraft makes an evasive manoeuvre to avoid conflicting traffic, for example? Yet I don't think it's common for such events to result in a return to the departure airport or a diversion purely because of the fears of some of the passengers. While I'm sure this was more alarming than usual, it's a fact of life that some people are terrified of any bangs or bumps in the air. The BA flight was in the air over North America for several hours with the malfunctioning engine completely shut down and everything else being closely monitored.

In any event, BA won't be doing it again... in US airspace.  
 
lowrider
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:04 am

Quoting David L (Reply 38):
Nevertheless, the FAA took exception to the way their FAR had been interpreted.

They usually do, if it suits their purpose. I think this was a case of "Ready, Fire, Aim". They reacted poorly to a situation without fully considering all the facts and their own interpretations had not caught up with the current state of technology. Nevertheless, since this incident they have violated pilots who overflew perfectly serviceable airports in an emergency situations based on company and passenger convenience considerations.
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Pihero
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:14 pm

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 34):
Quoting zeke (Reply 27):
Also in term of ETOPS, the diversions are calculated at or close to Vmo/Mmo

Really?! What twin out there is even capable of operating for any duration at Vmo/Mmo on a single engine? When we do our ETOPS range circles it's at single-engine LRC, nowhere close to Mmo.

You have too restrictive a definition of ETOPS diversion, Tom.
There are times when you'd be too far from an LRC circle and you'd need a faster diversion speed ( i.e making that circle bigger in order to be inside it) and you'd then be allowed to use an MCT-related cruise schedule... at lower weights, you'd find yourself at or close to Vmo/Mmo. ( Possible on a 330 below 140 tons or a 319 LR basically at all weights ).
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Jetlagged
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:27 pm

Quoting yeelep (Reply 37):
It baffles me that you would rather have your beloved pre-ETOPS/EROPS tri/quad engine aircraft flying around in a less safe condition than the hated twins. Examples of which is safer: Max. duration diversion with one engine shutdown; with cabin depressurization; with cargo fire. 2 to 1 in favor of the twin.

Pardon me for offering an opinion. BTW, they aren't my "beloved" tri/quad aircraft and I don't hate twins. Why be so agressive? I'd be interested in why you think a twin is safer than a quad with one engine out though, even a quad not maintained to EROPS standards.
The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
 
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Jetlagged
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 6:03 pm

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 34):
It's basically a recognition of two things:
-An ISFD is a bad thing on any aircraft, regardless of number of engines, and the ETOPS regulations have been extremely successful at driving down the ISFD rate
-The scrutiny on ETOPS uncovered several systems issues that have nothing to do with propulsion but are inherent to long diversions, like cargo fire suppression, that were not considered on the original 3/4 engine regulations. A fire doesn't know how many engines you have.

The 744 was certified to fly the ranges it does allowing for the possibility of an engine shutdown. Why should such ranges retrospectively be regarded as "extended" as the FAA now do? By all means apply the new rules to the 747-8.

All passenger 747's have lower lobe cargo fire suppression systems as designed. Combis and some cargo conversions don't have main deck cargo fire systems I agree. Fitting such systems seems common sense, though awkward in a combi.

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 34):
Yes, but using ETOPS maintenance principles will reduce your ISFD rate on any aircraft, which is a good thing whether you've got 2/3/4 engines. And the original certification rules didn't cover some other failures unrelated to the engine itself that could get a 3/4 engine aircraft in trouble on a long diversion.

True, but the FAA can't demand operators of older aircraft certified under old rules to operate to later certification standards. They could recommend it of course.

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 34):
A 747 on 2 engines is considerably worse off. Purely from a thrust standpoint, a twin with an engine out has enough power to do everything it needs to do, up to and including a single-engine go-around. A quad with two engines out is 33% below their thrust requirements to accomplish all maneuvers that may be required.

On top of that, thanks to the redundancy built in in order to get an ETOPS-twin in the first place, you will typically have more functioning systems on a single-engine ETOPS twin than you will on a quad with two engines down.

A 747 is certainly capable of a two engine out go around, even two on one wing. Performance is less good than a twin on one engine, but it is sufficient.

Yes a twin with one engine out has a thrust advantage over a quad with two engines out. But that same quad has a distinct thrust advantage over a twin with two engines out. How far do you go with the logic? As for redundancy I disagree. The 747 has massive redundancy built into it because it has four of everything. The twin requires all sorts of back up devices, not required for normal operation, just to get close. A 747 with two engines out on one wing still has a fully powered electrical system as well as four independent hydraulic systems.
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sunrisevalley
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:26 pm

Quoting Pihero (Reply 40):
There are times when you'd be too far from an LRC circle and you'd need a faster diversion speed ( i.e making that circle bigger in order to be inside it) and you'd then be allowed to use an MCT-related cruise schedule... at lower weights, you'd find yourself at or close to Vmo/Mmo. ( Possible on a 330 below 140 tons or a 319 LR basically at all weights ).

Pinhero... could you elaborate on what you are saying here. I believe the one-engine out cruise speed of a 777 is about 412k. Is there a flexibility that a PIC has regarding this value?
 
Fabo
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:51 pm

Quoting SunriseValley (Reply 43):
I believe the one-engine out cruise speed of a 777 is about 412k. Is there a flexibility that a PIC has regarding this value?

Well, does it have to be engine out speed? ETOPS go way beyond that, and I dont even have to think hard to imagine a situation when single engine endurance would not be the limiting factor.
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yeelep
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:54 pm

What's the fixation with redundancies and IFSD's in regards to the quads and ETOPS. From everything Iv'e read, little or no changes are been required to the engines and redundant systems on the older quads. The changes are mostly operational in nature.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 42):
All passenger 747's have lower lobe cargo fire suppression systems as designed.

Which has since been determined to be insufficient to suppress a fire for the maximum diversion times.

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 42):
True, but the FAA can't demand operators of older aircraft certified under old rules to operate to later certification standards. They could recommend it of course.

By that logic AD compliance should also be voluntary. The FAA can and does force operators to modify their aircraft to certain later certification standards.
 
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zeke
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:11 pm

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 34):

We plan the 777-200/300 and A330 at Vmo/Mmo, and the 77W at Mmo/Vmo-10. This gives us the maximum diversion distance and highest fuel requirement.

Have a look for an Airbus document "getting to grips with ETOPS " on page 124 onwards they ave published the rule distances for Vmo/Mmo.

Page 84 covers the various diversion strategies, LRC reduces the maximum diversion distance.
We are addicted to our thoughts. We cannot change anything if we cannot change our thinking – Santosh Kalwar
 
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Jetlagged
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:11 pm

Quoting yeelep (Reply 45):
Which has since been determined to be insufficient to suppress a fire for the maximum diversion times.

Can ETOPS fire suppression systems really keep fires safely under control for up to 180 minutes? As I said in an earlier post I wouldn't argue over whether fire suppression systems need beefing up or replacing to improve safety. That's common sense. The original question was about engine shutdowns on 3 and 4 engined aircraft.

Quoting yeelep (Reply 45):
By that logic AD compliance should also be voluntary. The FAA can and does force operators to modify their aircraft to certain later certification standards.

Not quite the same thing as retrospectively applying ETOPS rules.
The glass isn't half empty, or half full, it's twice as big as it needs to be.
 
sunrisevalley
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:18 pm

Quoting Fabo (Reply 44):

Well, does it have to be engine out speed

The one engine out cruise speed sets the distance allowed at 180-min. from the alternate aerodrome.
 
yeelep
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RE: FAA Etops Rules. Can 4 Engine Aircraft Continue

Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:58 pm

Quoting Jetlagged (Reply 47):

Can ETOPS fire suppression systems really keep fires safely under control for up to 180 minutes?

More than 180 minutes, at least during the certification tests.

Extended Operations (ETOPS) of Multi-Engine Airplanes; Final Rule

D. Cargo or Baggage Compartment Fire Suppression Requirements:
The historical rate of occurrence of inflight cargo and baggage compartment fires is approximately 1 × 10¥7 per flight hour.10 This rate translates to about one cargo fire per 10 million flight hours. The FAA Seattle Aircraft Certification Office received five reports of cargo or baggage compartment fires for the period 1999 to 2004. In-flight fires can be particularly hazardous. The cargo and baggage compartment fire suppression system requirement will ensure all ETOPS airplanes whose cargo or baggage compartments require fire suppression systems will have systems capable of putting out fires and
suppressing re-ignition for the longest duration diversion for which the airplane is approved.

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