Satcom radome vibrations trigger A220 ELT antenna exams | information

The operators of the Airbus A220 are instructed to check and replace the antennas of the emergency call transmitters after incidents from a communication radome generate vibrations that lead to the failure of the antenna.

One of the incidents caused the antenna to separate from the aircraft and hit the vertical fin.

Research has attributed the problem to vibration loads caused by eddies that form around the radome of the Gogo 2Ku Satcom system, which is mounted on the fuselage and provides satellite connectivity for in-flight internet and other services.

According to Transport Canada, the situation could not only result in the loss of the tracking device’s tracking antenna, but also possible cracks in the fuselage, which could lead to a reduction in cabin pressure.

It has instructed the operator to replace the location antenna with a new one at fixed intervals, depending on the flight time, and to examine the fuselage skin around the attachment area repeatedly for damage. Location antennas that have accumulated over 3,500 hours must be replaced within 200 hours.

Both the A220-100 and A220-300 fall under the Transport Canada directive.

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