Re: Compressor Stall at Takeoff?

Date:         09 Dec 97 03:54:23 
From:         Seth Dillon <bdillon1@mindspring.com>
Organization: MindSpring Enterprises
References:   1
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Dick Bussiere wrote:
> Last week, I was aboard a US-Airways 727-200 on a shuttle from New York to
> Boston. When we began our takeoff roll, there was a loud "bang" from the
> rear of the plane. We thought we had hit something or that a major
> malfunction had occurred. Needless to say, the pilot continued the takeoff
> roll and the flight proceeded normally.
>
> A few minutes later, the captain got on the loudspeaker and said that we had
> experenced a compressor stall in one of the engines. He said that it was
> common when taking off into a strong crosswind.
>
> Is this true? More importantly, when a compressor stall occurs, is there a
> loss of power in the stalled engine?

It sure sounds like a compressor stall.  On the 727 and L1011 the center
engine is very sensitive to crosswinds.  A crosswind gust while the
aircraft is moving slowly can cause a stall or a series of stalls.  The
JT8Ds on the 727 are pretty tough as far as tolerance to stalls goes.
The captain probably checked his instruments and noted that all was
within limits and elected to continue.  If EGT, N1, N2, and EPR were
okay then it is likely there was no damage.  The RB211 is not so
tolerant.  A stall as you described would result in a RTO and probable
damage to the HP compressor blades.  A stall in an RB211 requires a
mandatory borescope inspection of the compressor.

-Seth