Airbus says A380 wing crack repairs to 'take weeks'

Repairing tiny cracks in the wings of Airbus's flagship A380 superjumbo will take eight weeks for each aircraft if the work is done in one go, aviation magazine FlightGlobal reported Sunday.

An Airbus spokesman told AFP that the repairs "would take weeks" but declined to confirm the eight-week timeframe, equivalent to 30,000 hours labour, reported by FlightGlobal.

The repairs would be equivalent to the "heavy checks" carried out on planes after two, four and six years of flight, the spokesman said.

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"It's up to the customer to decide if they want to do the repairs in one go or in several stops. They choose whatever best fits their operations and needs," the spokesman said.

Airbus, the main subsidiary of aerospace giant EADS, has said the hairline cracks were found on some wing rib-skin attachments on a limited number of double-decker A380 aircraft.

It said they posed no safety threat and had not damaged the plane's popularity with travellers.

The European planemaker is to begin building A380 wings without the defect using a new type of aluminium in 2013 which means aircraft delivered from 2014 onwards.

Airbus has said it will cover the cost of the repairs but will not pay any compensation for lost revenue during the work.

The A380, which entered service in 2007, is the world's biggest passenger jet and a key product in Airbus's line-up as it battles its main rival US giant Boeing for the top spot in the world civil airliner industry.

by Fabienne Faur © 2012 AFP

Source: AFP
Date: Jun 10, 2012