On 1 February, Swiss International Air Lines flight 40 experienced an issue with its number 1 engine—the engine on the left side of the aircraft—and diverted to Iqaluit in northern Canada. After flight LX40 landed, the logistical challenge of getting passengers to their destinations—and a new engine for the aircraft—began.

LX40 diverted to Iqaluit after one of its engines automatically shut down after detecting a fault

Swiss flight 40, a Boeing 777-300ER with two General Electric GE90-115B engines, en route from Zurich to Los Angeles, was off the coast of Canada when the engine automatically shut down after detecting a fault. The crew decided to divert to Iqaluit and landed a little less than 2 hours later.

A Swiss A330 was dispatched as LX7002 from New York to retrieve the crew and cargo and deliver Swiss engineers to begin the engine inspection process.

HB-JHK, the Swiss A330 sent from New York to retrieve LX40 passengers and crew

Cargo, passengers, and crew from the 777 were transferred to the A330, which then departed as LX7003 to New York, where passengers were sent onward to their final destinations.

A New Engine

The Antonov An-124 arrives in Iqaluit with a new GE90 engine for the 777

After inspections, it was determined the GE90 engine needed replacing. An Antonov An-124 was chartered to pick up the engine from Zurich and deliver it to Iqaluit. The aircraft also brought the necessary equipment to perform the engine change.

The new engine arrived on 4 February and crews began work to remove the faulty engine and install the new engine. Members of the Iqaluit aviation community were able to document much of the process.

Due to the cold temperatures (reaching into the -30 degrees Celsius range), engineers erected a specially designed tent around the engine to facilitate their work.

The engine pylon and open tent with the engine removed.

The new GE90-115B installed on the engine pylon under the 777’s wing.

After successful installation, the new engine is tested on the ground before the aircraft departs for Zurich.

Time to Go Home

HB-JND returns to Zurich a week after landing in Iqaluit

With the engine change complete, HB-JND departed Iqaluit as LX5177. After spending a week on the ground in Iqaluit, the 777 was back in Zurich.


Featured image © Brian Tattuinee

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