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Airbus Reviews A350-1000 Plans

by Ulrika Lomas,, Brussels

27 June 2011

Airbus and Rolls-Royce have announced that they have revised plans for the A350-1000, now due to be launched in mid-2017, to allow the companies to jointly develop more powerful Trent XWB engines to be used on the aircraft.

Airbus said that the decision was made in response to the industry's call for the aircraft to offer more payload and range.

"The enhanced version of the Trent XWB engines will be fully optimized for the largest number of the A350 XWB Family and will deliver up to 97,000lbs of thrust on takeoff, making it the most powerful engine ever developed for an Airbus aircraft," Airbus said.

Commenting, Fabrice Brégier, Airbus’s Chief Operating Officer, said: “We are delighted to announce that together with our partner Rolls-Royce, we will develop and produce an enhanced A350-1000 aircraft with outstanding payload and long range, the best economics, and with a 25% lower fuel burn and CO2 emissions than its nearest competitor.”

He added: “This will unequivocally assure the A350-1000’s position as the most efficient aircraft in its category."

Mark King, Rolls-Royce President, Civil Aerospace, said: “We are proud to power the Airbus A350-1000 with our specially tailored Trent XWB engine. Trent XWB engines currently on test are proving it to be the most advanced civil aero engine in the world today. The higher thrust variant of the Trent XWB optimized for the A350-1000 incorporates further innovations from our Advance 3 technology demonstrator programmes. This has enabled us to offer our partner, Airbus, a new, higher thrust version of the engine with industry-leading levels of efficiency.”

Explaining the decision, a statement from Airbus said: "The extra thrust together with an increased aircraft takeoff weight capability of 308 tonnes will enable airlines to fly the new A350-1000 approximately 400nm further with a full load of 350 passengers, or carry around 4.5 extra tonnes of payload at a given range. The A350-1000’s payload-range capability is aimed at fulfilling the expected increase in long haul routes for emerging markets such as Shanghai-Boston or Paris-Santiago, as well as more traditional routes like Manchester-Los Angeles or Dubai-Melbourne, while burning 25% less fuel than its nearest competitor."

The A350 XWB Family consists of three passenger versions with true long-range capability. The A350-1000 is the largest of these three and will typically accommodate 350 seats. To date, four key customers have ordered a total of 75 A350-1000s. Airbus forecasts a demand over the next 20 years of around 5,800 new twin-aisle mid-size passenger aircraft.

TAGS: aviation

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