One of the big changes when Airbus unveiled its market-driven XWB revamp of the A350 back in May 2007 was the new structural concept: a fuselage constructed of 12 panels of carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) mounted on frames of aluminum-lithium alloy.
Airbus has revealed that first deliveries of its A350XWB-800 and A350XWB-1000 will be delayed by two years–to mid-2016 and mid-2017, respectively. At a briefing in Paris on Saturday, it claimed the delay of the -1000 would allow it to boost the payload-range performance to better match the Boeing 777-300ER, which is something its customers have been asking for.
Even as it works toward delivery of the first flying A350 cockpit later this year, Thales (Hall Concorde) is exploring possibilities for the post-2020 generation of aircraft at its Le Haillan facility in Bordeaux.
As Airbus prepares to put together the first A350 XWB, the European manufacturer acknowledges the stiff task it faces to open the final assembly line (FAL) by the end of this year and to fly the aircraft within 12 months thereafter. It says significant challenges remain to start the FAL by year’s end with “an appropriate level of quality to prepare the ramp-up.”
Crane Aerospace (Hall 4 A188) has just signed several new international agreements as part of its strategy to raise its global profile.
This time last year, newly restructured Sargent Aerospace & Defense was busily expanding its component-making facilities in anticipation of a full-blown industry recovery in the second half of this year. Preparing to depart for this week’s Paris Air Show, the U.S.
One of the newest names in aerospace is also one of the biggest, but even before Tyco Electronics became TE Connectivity this past March, few in the industry would have guessed that the company provides more aircraft part numbers to the OEMs than any other company in the world.
Aluminum giant Alcoa (H5 F220) is here exhibiting a fuselage section manufactured with advanced aluminum-lithium alloy sheet that was stretch-formed on existing tooling by Spirit Aerosystems’ factory in Wichita, Kansas. U.S.-based Alcoa is targeting the next generation of single-aisle aircraft (with a clear focus on Boeing’s expected decision this year) as the potential first applications.
Eight Trent XWB engines–serial numbers 20990 and 20001 through 20007–are being used in Rolls-Royce’s test program. Following are descriptions of the status or goals for each of the eight:
By the end of this month, the manufacturer hopes to complete pass-off tests of Trent XWB 20990, its most highly instrumented flight-test engine ever, ahead of trials aboard the Airbus A380 flying test bed.
With positive early test results and an accelerating work schedule, Rolls-Royce is confident it can deliver the Trent XWB as a mature engine, ready for full production before the end of 2014. Related technology programs are said to be on track in terms of high temperature and thrust.