Category Archives: Airbus

China and Airbus to expand their partnership in civil aviation

Airbus made this announcement:

Airbus and China Aviation Supplies Holding Company (CAS) signed a General Terms Agreement (GTA) covering the purchase by Chinese airlines of a total of 300 Airbus aircraft. The GTA was signed in Paris, France by Guillaume Faury, President of Airbus Commercial Aircraft and future Airbus CEO; and Jia Baojun, Chairman of CAS; in the presence of visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping and French President Emmanuel Macron.

The GTA comprises of 290 A320 Family aircraft and 10 A350 XWB Family aircraft, reflecting the strong demand in all market segments including domestic, low cost, regional and international long haul from Chinese carriers.

According to Airbus’ latest China Market Forecast 2018 to 2037, China will need some 7,400 new passenger and freighters aircraft in the next 20 years. It represents more than 19 percent of the world total demand for over 37,400 new aircraft.

By the end of January 2019, the in-service Airbus fleet with Chinese operators totaled some 1,730 aircraft, of which 1,455 are A320 Family, and 17 are A350 XWB Family planes.

With more than 14,600 A320 Family aircraft ordered and over 8,600 delivered, the A320 is the world’s most successful single-aisle aircraft Family. Of these, the A320neo Family is the world’s best-selling single aisle aircraft with over 6,500 orders from over 100 customers since its launch in 2010. It has pioneered and incorporated the latest technologies, including its new generation engines and the industry’s reference cabin design, delivering 20 percent fuel cost savings alone. The A320neo also offers significant environmental benefits with nearly a 50 percent reduction in noise footprint compared to previous generation aircraft.

Photos: Airbus.

 

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Airbus delivers first FANS-C equipped A320 to easyJet

Airbus has delivered the first *FANS-C equipped A320 aircraft to easyJet. In the frame of Europe’s SESAR Air Traffic Management (ATM) research program, this aircraft – and others to follow – will take part in the Airbusled project: “Demonstration of air traffic management improvements Generated by 4D Initial Trajectory Information Sharing” (DIGITS) which will demonstrate the sharing of an aircraft’s predicted trajectory data with air traffic control (ATC).

 

  •  Milestone marks the start of SESAR FANS-C demonstration by seven airlines
  • 100 aircraft with FANS-C to demonstrate 4D initial trajectory sharing in Europe

FANS-C technology will enable airlines to optimise their aircraft’s trajectories and make traffic flows more fluid and aircraft speed easier to manage, which will help them to save fuel and reduce noise. In particular, the sharing of predicted trajectories with ATC controllers will enable smooth aircraft sequencing on approach and in the “Terminal Maneuvering Area”.

Hugh McConnellogue, Group Head of Network Operations at easyJet said: “We are very pleased to be the first airline to receive this new FANS-C technology in our Airbus aircraft – and to try it for real in the SESAR demonstration. Our early hands-on experience already indicates that it promises to be an important enabler to increase the efficiency, safety, and on-time performance of our expanding operations – especially in the congested European airspace.”

Jean-Brice Dumont, Executive Vice President of Engineering, Airbus Commercial Aircraft said: “We congratulate easyJet on the delivery of the first FANS-C equipped Airbus aircraft, which marks the start of this very large demonstration of 4D initial trajectory sharing across Europe.” He adds: “We are proud to lead this SESAR project and to play our part in helping ATM respond to the increase in air traffic volume while enhancing safety, and to bring about a positive environmental impact thanks to a more efficient ATM system.”

From now until mid-2020 seven European airlines, which are all taking part in DIGITS, will progressively equip up to 100 of their A320 Family aircraft with the FANS-C technology. The “Very Large Demonstration” (VLD) will last more than a year and collect data from over 20,000 revenue flights, allowing stakeholders to demonstrate benefits of this technology during live day-to-day operations.

Paving the way for start of the DIGITS operational phase and to ultimately deploy this technology across Europe and the rest of the world, Airbus achieved the world’s first certification of FANS-C ‘4D’ avionics on a commercial aircraft in November 2018 – the initial aircraft type being the A320 Family. Moreover, to complement the airborne FANS-C technology, air navigation service providers (ANSPs) throughout Europe will develop the respective ground ATC tools.

SESAR = “Single European Sky ATM Research”

*FANS-C is facilitated with two key components: “Automatic Dependent Surveillance Contract” (ADS-C) and “Controller-Pilot Data Link Communication” (CPDLC). ADS-C enables the automatic or on-demand transmission to air traffic control of the aircraft’s complete predicted four-dimensional aircraft trajectory (3D + time), while CPDLC facilitates the digital uplink of ATC orders and clearances. The benefits of FANS-C include: More accurate flight plans; more optimised trajectory computation and acceptance processes; better alignment of airlines’ and ATM planned trajectories; enhancement of aircraft traffic predictions and improvement of demand/capacity network calculations.

The seven airlines taking part in the DIGITS program comprise: Air France; British Airways; easyJet; Iberia; Novair; Thomas Cook; and Wizz Air.

For FANS-C capability on-board an A320 Family aircraft, the equipment required includes a new Data Link router (ATSU), an upgraded Flight Management System (FMS) and “DCDU” Data Link compatible cockpit displays. FANS-C will be first available on the A320 Family and subsequently on all other Airbus programs.

Airbus and Emirates reach agreement on A380, sign new wide body orders – A380 production to end in 2021

Emirates Airline Airbus A380-861 A6-EOG (msn 172) (Year of Zayed 2018) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 945699.

Airbus has made this announcement:

Following a review of its operations, and in light of developments in aircraft and engine technologies, Emirates is reducing its A380 orderbook from 162 to 123 aircraft. Emirates will take delivery of 14 further A380s over the next two years. As a consequence and given the lack of order backlog with other airlines, Airbus will cease deliveries of the A380  in 2021.

Emirates has also decided to continue growing with Airbus’ newest generation, flexible wide body aircraft, ordering 40 A330-900 (above) and 30 A350-900 aircraft (below).

“As a result of this decision we have no substantial A380 backlog and hence no basis to sustain production, despite all our sales efforts with other airlines in recent years. This leads to the end of A380 deliveries in 2021,” said Airbus Chief Executive Officer Tom Enders. “The consequences of this decision are largely embedded in our 2018 full year results”.

Airbus will start discussions with its social partners in the next few weeks regarding the 3,000 to 3,500 positions potentially impacted over the next three years. However, the ongoing A320 ramp-up and the new widebody order from Emirates Airline will offer a significant number of internal mobility opportunities.

In addition, Emirates made this announcement:

Emirates airline today announced an order for 40 A330-900 aircraft, and 30 A350-900 aircraft, in a heads of agreement signed with Airbus. The deal is worth US$21.4 billion at list prices.

The latest generation Airbus A330neo and A350 aircraft, will be delivered to Emirates starting from 2021 and 2024 respectively.

In addition, Airbus and Emirates reached an agreement on outstanding A380 deliveries. The airline will receive 14 more A380s from 2019 until the end of 2021, taking its total A380 order book to 123 units.

Commenting on the agreement on A380 deliveries, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group, said: “After many months of discussions, we have come to an agreement with Airbus and Rolls-Royce.

“Emirates has been a staunch supporter of the A380 since its very inception. While we are disappointed to have to give up our order, and sad that the program could not be sustained, we accept that this is the reality of the situation. For us, the A380 is a wonderful aircraft loved by our customers and our crew. It is a differentiator for Emirates. We have shown how people can truly fly better on the A380, and Emirates has set the standards for that by introducing customer experiences that are unique to the A380 like our Shower Spas and Onboard Lounge. The A380 will remain a pillar of our fleet well into the 2030s, and as we have always done, Emirates will continue to invest in our onboard product and services so our customers can be assured that the Emirates A380 experience will always be top-notch.

On the decision to purchase A330neos and A350s, HH Sheikh Ahmed said: “Emirates’ fleet strategy to operate a young, modern, and efficient all-wide body fleet remains unchanged.  The 40 A330neos and 30 A350s that we are ordering today will complement Emirates’ fleet mix, support our network growth, and give us more flexibility to better serve seasonal or opportunistic demand. Both the A330neos and A350s will play an important role in our future fleet and network plans.”

The A330neos will be deployed on Emirates’ regional destinations, and also enable the airline to serve smaller airports and thereby open new routes and connectivity for its global network. The A350s will supplement Emirates’ long-haul operations, providing the carrier with added flexibility in terms of capacity deployment on 8 to 12 hour missions from its Dubai hub.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Airbus): Emirates Airline Airbus A380-861 A6-EOG (msn 172) (Year of Zayed 2018) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 945699.

Emirates aircraft slide show:

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EASA certifies Airbus A330neo for “beyond 180 minutes” ETOPS

Airbus has made this announcement:

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has approved the A330-900 for ETOPS (Extended-range Twin engine aircraft Operations) “beyond 180 minutes” diversion time. This significant achievement means that operators of the A330neo, which is powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, will benefit from the most efficient, reliable and direct long-range routings.

The approval, which includes ETOPS 180 min. capability in the aircraft’s basic specification, now also includes the option for “ETOPS 285 min.” This extends the potential air diversion distance to around 2,000nm. The U.S. FAA’s respective ETOPS certification is expected soon.

A330neo operators which choose the ETOPS 285 min. option will be able to serve new direct ‘non-limiting’ routings. Meanwhile, operators flying on existing routes (currently flown with up to 180-minute diversion time) will be able to traverse a straighter, quicker and more fuel efficient path, and also have access to more – and possibly better equipped – en-route diversion airports if needed.

The granting of this ETOPS capability is a testimony to the aircraft’s design and systems maturity, which has been demonstrated to be as good as its predecessor – the versatile and extremely reliable A330-200/A330-300 family, proven over many millions of flights.

The A330neo is a true new-generation aircraft family comprising the A330-900 and the smaller A330-800. The A330-900 in particular is the lowest seat-mile cost 300-seater which incorporates highly efficient Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, a new 3D-optimised wing with greater span and lighter composite materials, plus new wingtip Sharklets. Together, these advances bring greater range (around 7,200 nm with a three-class cabin) and 25% lower fuel consumption compared with older generation aircraft of similar size.

The A330 is one of the most popular widebody families ever, having received over 1,700 orders to date from 120 customers. More than 1,400 A330s are flying with over 120 operators worldwide. The A330neo is the latest addition to the leading Airbus twin-engine widebody family, which alongside the A350 XWB, offer unmatched space and comfort combined with unprecedented efficiency levels and long-range capability.

In 2009, the Airbus A330-200/-300 became the first airliner family to gain an ETOPS ‘Beyond 180min’ certification, which was granted by EASA. Airbus twin-engine airliners have accumulated over 20 million ETOPS flight hours, most of which have been accumulated by the A330 Family.

“ETOPS” is a set of rules initially introduced by International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) in the mid-1980s to allow commercial operations with twin-engine aircraft on routes beyond 60min flying time from the nearest airport and which were previously operated only by aircraft with more than two engines. These rules, which are now named “EDTO” (Extended Diversion Time Operations) by ICAO have been progressively revised to allow operations beyond 180 min diversion time.

Photo: Airbus.

Construction begins on Airbus’ U.S. A220 manufacturing facility

Airbus’ manufacturing growth in the United States advanced another step in Mobile, Alabama, as construction of the company’s A220 Manufacturing Facility officially launched with a groundbreaking ceremony. The assembly line will satisfy the strong and growing U.S. demand for the A220 aircraft, the newest offering in Airbus’ commercial aircraft product line.

Tom Enders, CEO of Airbus, and Guillaume Faury, President Airbus Commercial Aircraft, led the celebration and welcomed approximately 700 attendees including Airbus and other industry executives, Airbus manufacturing employees, state and national dignitaries, and local community leaders.

The new assembly line, which is the company’s second U.S.-based commercial aircraft production facility, will be located at the Mobile Aeroplex at Brookley adjacent to the A320 Family production line and will facilitate assembly of A220-100 and A220-300 aircraft for U.S. customers. Aircraft production is planned to begin in the third quarter of 2019 with first delivery of a Mobile-assembled A220 aircraft scheduled for 2020. The new A220 production facilities will be complete by next year.

With an order book of more than 500 aircraft to date, the A220 has all the credentials to win the lion’s share of the 100- to 150-seat aircraft market estimated to represent at least 7,000 aircraft over the next 20 years.

A220 airliner wins approval from Transport Canada for 180 minutes ETOPS capability

Airbus has made this announcement:

The newest addition to the Airbus family of commercial aircraft, the A220, has received 180-minute extended operations (ETOPS*) approval from the Canadian civil aviation authority, Transport Canada. This achievement paves the way for A220 customers to start new direct non-limiting routings over water, remote or underserved regions.

The A220 is the first commercial airliner to obtain domestic ETOPS certification from Transport Canada. This capability is available as an option for A220-100 and A220-300 operators, enabling them to fly for up to 180-minutes from the nearest diversion airport.

As the only aircraft purpose-built for the 100-150 seat market, the A220 delivers unbeatable fuel efficiency and true widebody comfort in a single-aisle aircraft. The aircraft brings together state-of-the-art aerodynamics, advanced materials and Pratt & Whitney’s latest-generation PW1500G geared turbofan engines to offer at least a 20% lower fuel burn per seat compared to previous generation aircraft. With a range of up to 3,200 nautical miles (5,920 km), the A220 offers the performance of larger single aisle aircraft.

With an order book of over 537 aircraft to date, the A220 has all the credentials to win the lion’s share of the 100- to 150-seat aircraft market.

“ETOPS” is a set of rules initially introduced by International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) in the mid-1980s to allow commercial operations with twin-engine aircraft on routes beyond 60 minutes flying time from the nearest airport and which were previously operated only by aircraft with more than two engines. These rules, which are now named “EDTO” (Extended Diversion Time Operations) by ICAO have been progressively revised to allow operations up to or beyond 180 minutes diversion time.