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Why Did Airbus Make The A350 Wider?  
User currently offline787KQ From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 549 posts, RR: 0
Posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 9811 times:

Several sources report that Airbus widened the A350 which was originally the standard Airbus widebody fuselage width to slightly larger. This was at the insistence of leasing and airline customers? Why was this? Does this make the airplane more efficient? If so why aren't all airplanes as fat as can be?

20 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 1, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 9786 times:

First, we are not sure if the fuselage of the A350 will be wider....and/or the wider fuselage may only be offered on the larger variants of the airliner, which may be known as the A370. Its still too soon to tell.

Why the wider fuselage, simple answer, to accommodate 9 across seating in coach instead of the typical 8 abreast offered in Airbus widebody aircraft. By slightly increasing the diameter of the fuseage, one extra seat per row can be added. The 787 will have the option of 8 or 9 abreast, and it seems that the airlines like this idea and influenced Airbus on the issue. More seats + very minimal increase in the size of the fuselage = much better and much lower operating costs on a per seat basis.

Quoting 787KQ (Thread starter):
If so why aren't all airplanes as fat as can be?

LOL....we cant have fat airplanes, can we? There are many considerations, including the size of the airplane, its seating configuration, the issue of single aisle vs twin aisle, etc.


User currently offlinePADSpot From Germany, joined Jan 2005, 1676 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 9603 times:

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 1):
First, we are not sure if the fuselage of the A350 will be wider....and/or the wider fuselage may only be offered on the larger variants of the airliner, which may be known as the A370. Its still too soon to tell.

Somehow I can hardly believe that Airbus is sacrifizing the scale econmies they enjoy in the manufacturing of wide-bodies. Is it possible that they are NOT going to change their standard body-width, but just redesign the interior panneling in order to gain 2-3 inches?

Changing the entire structure of the plane doesn't seem to be viable for just 2-3 inches. Then it might be better to widen the body by lets say two feet and offer a kind of "9.5-seat-solution" comparable to the "8.5-seat-solution" of the 787.


User currently offlineTugger From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 5588 posts, RR: 8
Reply 3, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 9549 times:

I know that the width (diameter) of the fuselage directly affects one of the "drags" (I obviously don't know which one) so my question is: How much? (A questiong for the engineering geeks amongst us.) I am sure that a manufacturer must get this right (minimize outside diameter and thereby drag, maximize interior volume to allow the customer maximums revenue and flexibility).

I am also curious about this "new" wider fuselage news supposed from Airbus. a while ago there were stories of a 15 inch wider fuse now it is just 3 inches? Is it like PADSpot suggest and just a redefining of the interior? It doesn't sound like it is a great enough change for them to lose the advantage they get form being able to use their current production equipment/facilities.

Also the news stated that the "cabin floor diameter" is three inches wider, so that begs the questions: Where is the new cabin floor in the fuselage? Could they have moved that (thinned it with CF maybe)?

Tug

[Edited 2006-07-15 08:58:56]


I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
User currently offlineMEA-707 From Netherlands, joined Nov 1999, 4327 posts, RR: 35
Reply 4, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 9496 times:

The standard width of the Airbus widebodies was ideal for the original design, the 280 seat A-300. It worked well for the slightly larger A-330/340 200/300s but the A-340-500 and 600 would have been more efficient if they had a wider fuselage. To add growth potential and be able to even offer a 777-300 sized stretch later on, a wider fuselage helps as well. A shrunk A-310/300 sized version would be less efficient though, so a wider fuselage choice means they rather attack the 777 then the 757/A-300/310 replacement market with it.


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User currently offlineAstuteman From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 10022 posts, RR: 96
Reply 5, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 9427 times:
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Quoting Tugger (Reply 3):
I know that the width (diameter) of the fuselage directly affects one of the "drags" (I obviously don't know which one) so my question is: How much? (A questiong for the engineering geeks amongst us.) I am sure that a manufacturer must get this right (minimize outside diameter and thereby drag, maximize interior volume to allow the customer maximums revenue and flexibility).

I'm not necessarily the expert you're looking for Tugger, but IIRC lift drag is the largest component of overall drag. The fuelage drag (again IIRC) is part of "parasitic drag" (i.e. non-lift drag).
Therefore an increase in fuselage diameter doesn't have a 1 for 1 impact on overall drag. The impact is actually MUCH less.

Quoting MEA-707 (Reply 4):
It worked well for the slightly larger A-330/340 200/300s but the A-340-500 and 600 would have been more efficient if they had a wider fuselage

However, once you try to stretch a fuselage beyond a particular length (aspect ratio) in the interests of capacity, you soon start needing to strengthen the fuselage structure disproportinately to overcome the cantilever effect.
At some point, it becomes more effective overall to increase diameter rather than length, to gain additional capacity.

Concensus would seem to be that the A340-500/600 overstepped the optimum length, in the interests of maintaining production efficiencies through the common diameter.

Regards


User currently offlineOrlando666 From Netherlands, joined Apr 2005, 168 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 9250 times:

answer to original post question: "because the market wants it".

User currently offlineUA933 From Germany, joined Feb 2006, 220 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 9204 times:

If this is true then it is great to finally see Airbus doing something smart!


united - It's time to fly!
User currently offlineAviator27 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 9087 times:

Airbus increased the A350 fuselage diameter because too many people on A-NET were complaining it couldn't fit 9 abreast. So yeah, they listened to us.

Induced drag (someone called it lift drag) decreases exponentially as airspeed increased. Parasite drag increases exponentially as airspeed increases.

Parasite drag consists of two main components, form drag and skin friction drag. Form drag is described as the drag caused by the frontal area of the airplane. Liken this to pushing a flat metal plate perpendicular through the air. Skin friction drag is pretty self explanatory. Blah blah blah blah blah.

So if you double the diameter of the fuselage, you increase the form drag by four-fold (area of circle = pi*r^2). Skin friction drag will increase two-fold because (circumference of a circle = pi*d). Blah blah blah blah blah.

Okay, here goes all the attacks. Please correct me if I'm wrong. I am pretty sure i did get the aerodynamic concept right though.


User currently offline787KQ From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 549 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 9002 times:

Quoting Orlando666 (Reply 6):
answer to original post question: "because the market wants it".

Question to your answer is why does the market want it? Do airlines simply want wider aircraft for cosmetic reasons?

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 1):
Why the wider fuselage, simple answer, to accommodate 9 across seating in coach instead of the typical 8 abreast offered in Airbus widebody aircraft. By slightly increasing the diameter of the fuseage, one extra seat per row can be added. The 787 will have the option of 8 or 9 abreast, and it seems that the airlines like this idea and influenced Airbus on the issue. More seats + very minimal increase in the size of the fuselage = much better and much lower operating costs on a per seat basis.

This answer attempts offers some clue which is that CASM would be lower.

I still dont get the big deal with the width issue. Emirates has 10 abreast on the 777. Most other airlines have nine abreast, and have resisted the 10 abreast although they too could put it in. So is this just an Emirates driven issue, or are other airlines going to squeeze in more seats per row in the future?


User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 10, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 8995 times:

Quoting 787KQ (Reply 9):
are other airlines going to squeeze in more seats per row in the future?

Sadly, this is probably the most accurate answer to your question.


User currently offlineDj1986 From Luxembourg, joined Apr 2006, 141 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 8540 times:

If they would make the fuselage wider would the seating in a typical C Class be like 2-2-2 or 2-3-2?


on strike! finally VC!
User currently offlineTugger From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 5588 posts, RR: 8
Reply 12, posted (8 years 2 months 4 days ago) and read 7514 times:

Quoting Tugger (Reply 3):

Also the news stated that the "cabin floor diameter" is three inches wider, so that begs the questions: Where is the new cabin floor in the fuselage? Could they have moved that (thinned it with CF maybe)?

Just wondering if anyone has any thoughts on this? It seems like a rather specific qualifier.

Thanks.

Tug



I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
User currently offlineIkramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21525 posts, RR: 59
Reply 13, posted (8 years 2 months 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 7403 times:

Quoting Astuteman (Reply 5):
Concensus would seem to be that the A340-500/600 overstepped the optimum length, in the interests of maintaining production efficiencies through the common diameter

I actually don't agree that the 345 overstepped. I think it is the optimum length. But Airbus did so with a very heavy airframe to carry a lot of fuel to go a long way on 4 engines. A 345 with 2 engines and 7800nm range would have been a very strong competitor to the 772ER.

But just looking at the 346, the human eye can see it is too long.

Quoting Dj1986 (Reply 11):
If they would make the fuselage wider would the seating in a typical C Class be like 2-2-2 or 2-3-2?

Yes, you can likely squeeze 2-3-2 in C on the 787 (with 767 style seats) or a very comfy 2-2-2. For F, you can do a very comfy 2-1-2 (seen in some Boeing layouts) for F, or 1-2-1 with suites in the 787. The current A300 series fuselage does not have room for 1-2-1 suite products. VS has don 1-1-1, but could do 1-2-1 on a 777 or 787 with their product. NZ took VS product and did 1-2-1 with their J suites.

So if the A350 is wider, it might not only pick up a seat per row in Y, but also a seat per row in C/J or F or all three, depending on the carrier.

And even in Y+, it might make 2-4-2 Y+ more comfy, while current A300 series aircraft have 2-3-2 Y+...

Quoting Tugger (Reply 12):
Just wondering if anyone has any thoughts on this? It seems like a rather specific qualifier.

That's what I was thinking, too. Currently, the cabin floor is not at the exact center of the body, but above the belt line. By thinning it and moving it down and doing some tweaks to the lower deck area to still fit the containers and pallets, you might get a few more inches. i just don't know if you can get 3 MORE inches than the 787 of OVERALL width. My guess is they found a way to do 17.2" 9Y seating with slightly narrow aisles while maintaining the same outdated fuselage shape...



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User currently offlineRAPCON From Puerto Rico, joined Jul 2006, 671 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (8 years 2 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 7120 times:

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 1):
First, we are not sure if the fuselage of the A350 will be wider....and/or the wider fuselage may only be offered on the larger variants of the airliner, which may be known as the A370. Its still too soon to tell.

WELL SAID!! I just wish that every Tom, DIck & Harry at A.Net would stop all the speculation malarkey over Airbus' plans, and wait until EADS itself comes out with their plans. Then, and only then, can we criticize them!!



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User currently offlineComet4b From Canada, joined Jun 2006, 61 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (8 years 2 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 7052 times:

who knows perhaps we may even want to compliment them!!!!!!!!!

User currently onlineAircellist From Canada, joined Oct 2004, 1719 posts, RR: 8
Reply 16, posted (8 years 2 months 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 6765 times:

Quoting MEA-707 (Reply 4):
The standard width of the Airbus widebodies was ideal for the original design, the 280 seat A-300. It worked well for the slightly larger A-330/340 200/300s but the A-340-500 and 600 would have been more efficient if they had a wider fuselage. To add growth potential and be able to even offer a 777-300 sized stretch later on, a wider fuselage helps as well. A shrunk A-310/300 sized version would be less efficient though, so a wider fuselage choice means they rather attack the 777 then the 757/A-300/310 replacement market with it.

What are the optimal fuselage width and lengths, for different numbers of passengers? I mean, is it a question of being less-than-optimal that has made the A310 a relatively poor seller, compared to the 767 or 757? And then, what were the qualities looked after by Boeing, to make machines so close together in capacity, with different fuselage widths?

(somewhat off-topic, but I've always been curious about that one... If fragmentation is the name of the game, I wonder why there are no more A310 around)


User currently offlineManni From South Korea, joined Nov 2001, 4221 posts, RR: 22
Reply 17, posted (8 years 2 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 5733 times:

Quoting Aircellist (Reply 16):
If fragmentation is the name of the game, I wonder why there are no more A310 around

There are still more than 600 A300/310 aircraft in operation, according to Airbus, 229 of hem are A310's. Considering the age of the program, that's hardly a dissapointing number.

Quoting RAPCON (Reply 14):
I just wish that every Tom, DIck & Harry at A.Net would stop all the speculation malarkey over Airbus' plans, and wait until EADS itself comes out with their plans.

Why? As long as people state that they are speculating and not present it as fact, or as a rumour from so called 'good sources' without having the guts to name the source, there's nothing wrong with it.



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User currently offline787KQ From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 549 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (8 years 2 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 5434 times:

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 1):
and/or the wider fuselage may only be offered on the larger variants of the airliner, which may be known as the A370.

First time I've heard that Airbus might build two widths, but this would be extremely unusual.

Quoting Manni (Reply 17):
As long as people state that they are speculating and not present it as fact, or as a rumour from so called 'good sources' without having the guts to name the source, there's nothing wrong with it.

Reported in Wall Street Journal, New York Times, at BBC, etc. Their information based on their good sources. Didn't think it was necessary to name a source when so widely and often reported. Another for you:

http://atwonline.com/news/story.html?storyID=4991&print=Y


User currently offlineScbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 12566 posts, RR: 46
Reply 19, posted (8 years 2 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 5399 times:
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See here for all the real news about the A350XWB.
Leahy Presents A350XWB At Farnborough (by Slz396 Jul 17 2006 in Civil Aviation)#58



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User currently offline787KQ From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 549 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (8 years 2 months 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 5195 times:

It's official, the A350 will be wider.

http://money.cnn.com/2006/07/17/news...nternational/airbus.reut/index.htm

So the benefits of a wider Airbus are...

[Edited 2006-07-17 16:52:27]

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