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.
The tie-up between Spanish flag carrier Iberia and the UK’s British Airways to create International Airlines Group (IAG) will pave the way for an overhaul of the way the pair buy aircraft, according to the new company’s finance chief. The two airlines plan to combine buying in a new fleet renewal strategy led by IAG with its stronger buying power, although they will continue to run and maintain their fleets separately, Enrique Dupuy said.
Airbus has received the first set of Messier-Dowty-built A350 XWB main landing gear, the European airframer announced today. Delivered to Airbus’s A350 XWB landing gear systems test facility in Filton, UK, the main landing gear set for the A350-900 follows the arrival last month of the nose landing gear produced by Liebherr.
Airbus has rescheduled plans to address perceived airline requirements for more-efficient single-aisle jetliners. To take advantage of emerging new “open rotor” engine technologies, it has extended beyond 2030 the time frame in which an all-new “A30X” replacement for the A320 might appear.
Airbus plans to deliver between 520 to 530 commercial aircraft this year and the company projects its gross orders to exceed deliveries, resulting in a book-to-bill ratio of greater than one. The projection came as EADS released its year-end financial figures for 2010 today in Munich, where the European consortium noted that last year’s order intake increased 81 percent, to €83.1 billion ($115.8 billion), driven largely by Airbus Commercial.
Airbus’s first firm order for A380s from a Japanese customer last week not only added a significant tally to its backlog, but it might have represented a watershed event in the company’s efforts to loosen Boeing’s stranglehold on the lucrative market.
Iacobucci subsidiary MGS (Modular Galley Systems) has introduced an executive version of the new microwave oven it originally designed for the Airbus A350.
Airbus’s launch last week of a new engine option for its A320 single-aisle series has for the moment turned the proverbial spotlight directly on rival Boeing and its own line of narrowbodies. Indeed, the competitive implications of re-engining the 737–or not–now appear unequivocal.