The refurbishment of a government Airbus A330-200 (used mainly for the president) ran €33.2 million (about $46 million) over budget, according to a recent report from the “Cour des comptes,” the French equivalent of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). Replacement of the engines and interior upgrades are listed as the primary reasons for the cost overrun.
Rockwell Collins has provided more details of the flight deck displays, mission systems backbone and other key systems that it is providing for the new Boeing KC-46A tanker.
The company has devoted 200 engineers to the program, many of them previously involved in the commercial avionics business of Rockwell Collins, Mike Jones, senior director of tanker/transport programs, told AIN.
The Air France KLM Board of Directors approved the group’s planned firm order for 50 long-haul aircraft, consisting of 25 A350 XWBs and 25 Boeing 787s. Plans call for the contracts, still subject to the conclusion of negotiations with the manufacturers, to include options on another 35 of the Airbus models and 25 Boeings.
The team behind ambitious plans to operate Airbus A380s as flying cruiseliners has delayed the program’s launch while it considers the effect of political upheaval in the Middle East on demand for the service. It is also still trying to select an operator for the service and has indicated that it might also order the new A350-1000 XWB long-range airliner.
Airbus has delivered the first center wing box for the A350XWB from its site in Nantes, France to St. Nazaire, France, where engineers will attach it to the first A350XWB fuselage. Forty percent of the wing box, which measures some 21 feet by 18 feet and stands nearly 13 feet tall, is made from plastics reinforced with carbon fiber.
If start-ups are indicators of a healthy completion and refurbishment industry, there is cause for optimism in an industry that has been hard hit over the last several years. Recent months saw the creation of new centers, designers, vendors and consultancies as well as expansion by existing MRO facilities to include cabin outfitting.
The French company chosen to provide radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags for the first major application on “flyable” aircraft components–the Airbus A350 XWB–has established a branch in Boston to support U.S.-based A350 suppliers in tagging their parts.
Airbus is cooperating with Parker Aerospace (Hall 5 D203) to explore ways to improve the efficiency of fuel cells for aviation applications such as on-board power generation. The objective is to develop a technology demonstrator, which will be followed by a flight-test campaign around the middle of the decade.
Rolls-Royce has revealed how it will increase the thrust of the baseline engine it is developing for the Airbus A350 by 13,000lbs 000 pounds to meet the take-off and climb requirements of the heavier, longer-range A350-1000.
The new Trent XWB version will produce 97,000 pounds lb at take-off, making it the most powerful production engine R-R has ever built, – and that Airbus has ever used.