It was an airshow planned and prepared for during the worst of the past two years of economic downturn and yet Farnborough International 2010 ended up delivering gladly received evidence that a recovery is gathering momentum in the aerospace industry.
Airbus has is progressing with construction of its new 160,000-square-foot A350 XWB fuselage-assembly hangar at its German factory in Hamburg.
First came the Middle East carriers on Monday, then yesterday it was the turn of Asian and Latin American airlines to keep the Farnborough airshow cash registers ringing with deals done covering roughly $6.5 billion in new business for Airbus.
Manufacturers of airliners typically offer customers a choice of engines for their various models. The new Airbus A350 XWB is not one of them, however. It is powered only by the Rolls-Royce Trent turbofan, and one question often asked is, “Will GE offer an engine to power the Airbus A350 XWB?”
Aluminum maker Alcan Global Aerospace has won two major contracts on the new Airbus A350 XWB and the Bombardier C Series aircraft for which it will supply light alloys from its new Airware range. Airware combines technologies and services to improve metal performance, reduce cost and facilitate recycling.
Motion and control-technology company Parker Aerospace (Hall 4 Stand A18), a division of Parker Hannifin, has won valuable systems business from Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China (Comac) for the 170-passenger C919 single-aisle airliner. The company designs, manufactures and services fluid, fuel, flight-control and engine components and systems for aerospace and other industries.
GKN Aerospace has surfed into the Farnborough airshow on a wave of more than $1.5 billion worth of development and production contracts signed in recent months. The UK-based group says the new business will take it well “into the next decade and beyond.”
Thales uses its iDeck simulation environment for validation and de-risking in the early stages of development. Configured here to resemble the A350 flight deck, it is used to help Airbus pilots and engineers evaluate cockpit concepts.
Engine maker Rolls-Royce is preparing the technology needed for new two-shaft and three-shaft turbofan engines in the second half of this decade and an open-rotor design in the early 2020s.
“Our long-term strategy is to invest in technology and protect our options,” said Mark King, Rolls-Royce president of civil aerospace. “Two years ago we decided to make sure we were capable of whatever the manufacturers want.”