Golden SB20 at Copenhagen on Mar 20th 2012, elevator control malfunction

Last Update: August 15, 2013 / 21:03:41 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Mar 20, 2012

Aircraft Registration

Aircraft Type
SAAB 2000

ICAO Type Designator

The Danish Havarikommissionen (HCL) released their final report concluding:

It has not been possible to fully determine the actual cause to the LH elevator failure.

It is the opinion of the Danish AIB that the most probable cause leading to the LH elevator inoperative was a combination of:

- A failure to one LVDT coil Channel B on the LH outboard elevator
- An intermittent loose connection in one of the new installed electrical plugs to the inboard servo actuator.

The HCL reported the commander (ATPL, 8,620 hours total, 1,120 hours on type) was pilot flying on approach to Copenhagen's runway 22L. When the aircraft descended through about 200 feet AGL a yellow L Elevator degrade caution activated. As the handling of the aircraft remained unchanged the captain decided to continue the approach. Descending through 30 feet, just before flaring the aircraft, a red L ELEVATOR INOP warning activated prompting the captain to initiate a go-around and declared Mayday. The crew actioned the checklist for elevator inoperative and hydraulic leak, the captain had some problems trimming the aircraft at first during the go-around but regained full control of the aircraft. The aircraft positioned for another approach to runway 22L and landed safely.

Following landing the left and right hand elevator control systems were swapped, the INOP indication for the left elevator remained active however. The inboard elevator servos were swapped, the indication remained. After the outboard right hand engine servo was replaced the indication disappeared. Both left elevator servos were sent to a laboratory for further examination, however, no malfunction was detected. The inboard servo passed all tests, the outboard servo failed a test prompting disassembly which identified a failure in one of two coils which would prompt the degrade message but not a failure of the servo.
Incident Facts

Date of incident
Mar 20, 2012

Aircraft Registration

Aircraft Type
SAAB 2000

ICAO Type Designator

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