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Tuesday, 9 May 1972
Page: 1495

Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) asked the Minister for Civil Aviation, upon notice:

(1)   Has the Minister seen a report that a spokesman for BOAC has said that a simple engine modification, consisting of a bell-shaped air intake and with more sound-absorbing material fitted inside, will cut the noise level of Jumbo Jets leaving Kingsford-Smith (Mascot) Airport by 30 per cent and that that company's latest 747 jet has had the engine modification effected; if so. is this report correct.

(2)   Have international carriers, other than BOAC adopted similar modifications to their 747 aircraft; if so, which companies.

(3)   Is it possible for the same type of modification to be made to 707 aircraft.

Senator COTTON The answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

(1)   I believe that the honourable senator may be referring to a report in the April 1972 issue of Aviation News'. The 'simple engine modification' referred to in that report is a complete new engine inlet nacelle which was specially developed to ensure that the Boeing 747 aircraft would meet the noise certification requirements of the United States Federal Aviation Administration. The new nacelles have no inlet blow-in doors, have a revised inlet shape and incorporate considerable sound absorbing material. If they are installed, a significant noise reduction will result.

(2)   All Boeing 747 aircraft delivered since 1st December 1971 have incorporated the new nacelles. International carriers which have received such aircraft include BOAC, Iberia, KLM, Qantas, TAP, UAL and Universal Airlines. Qantas' first three Boeing 747 aircraft do not incorporate the new nacelle but it is understood that Qantas are keen to modify these early aircraft as soon as possible, not only because of the improved noise characteristics but also because of improved engine operating margins. However, the cost of the new nacelles for Qantas' first three aircraft will be in excess of $800,000 and, unless some financial arrangement can be made with

Boeing to recover the cost of the early model nacelles, which are worth in excess of$1m, the financial burden will be heavy.

(3)   It may be possible for a similar type of modification to be incorporated on Boeing 707 aircraft. It is known that considerable research is in hand on this matter but no such modification is available at this time.

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