Issue identified with Pratt & Whitney GTF engines for Airbus's A320neo

An Airbus A320neo aircraft is pictured during a news conference to announce a partnership between Airbus and Bombardier on the C Series aircraft programme, in Colomiers near Toulouse, France, October 17, 2017. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

(Reuters) - An issue has been identified on some recently delivered Pratt & Whitney UTX.N GTF engines for European planemaker Airbus's AIR.PA A320neo aircraft, the two companies said on Friday

Pratt & Whitney said the problem related to the knife edge seal in the High Pressure Compressor (HPC) aft hub on the PW1100G-JM engine powering the A320neo.

Airbus said it had informed affected A320neo customers and operators, adding there are currently 113 Pratt & Whitney-powered A320neo aircraft flying with 18 customers.

Pratt & Whitney said in a statement the issue affected a “a limited subpopulation of engines,” without elaborating.

Airbus said the two companies were assessing the situation and the European Aviation Safety Agency had published an Emergency Airworthiness Directive. Such a directive is issued when an unsafe condition exists that requires immediate action by an aircraft’s owner or operator.

Reporting by Alan Charlish; Editing by Mark Potter