Yesterday, Qantas "strapped" an extra engine onto Boeing 747-438 JH-OHS (SN 25564 / LN 1230) Hamilton Island and flew it from Sydney to Johannesburg, in order to ferry a replacement Rolls-Royce RB.211 engine to another Qantas 747-438 grounded with a failed engine over 11,000 km from the Qantas maintenance base.
747s have a mount point for a spare engine between the #2 engine and the fuselage, to which a special pylon and spare engine can be fitted. A similar capability is included in other aircraft types as well, including the Boeing 707, McDonnell-Douglas DC-10, and Lockheed L-1011 TriStar.
The extra engine, which is not powered during the flight, adds weight and drag so for the flight QF 63 stopped for fuel in Perth on what is normally a non-stop flight.
Today's Featured Map depicts this flight (a Boeing 747 with 5 engines on 6 January, mapped on 7 January) including the refueling stop as well as the normal non-stop route for reference.
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Karl L. Swartz.
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