Airbus Says A380 Wing-Crack Repairs to 'Take Weeks'

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

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 labor hours, as 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. "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 NV (IW 1000/56), has said the hairline cracks were found on some wing rib-skin attachments on a limited number of doubledecker A380 aircraft. The company said they pose no safety threat and has not damaged the plane's popularity with travelers. The European planemaker is to begin building A380 wings without the defect using a new type of aluminum in 2013, which means aircraft delivered from 2014 onward. 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 lineup as it battles its main rival Boeing Co. (IW 500/15) for the top spot in the world civil-airliner industry. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012

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