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The A350 Already Flies – In Parts  
User currently offlineoldeuropean From Germany, joined May 2005, 2027 posts, RR: 4
Posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 14134 times:

Airbus test-flies a A350 fuselage panel on an A340.

http://www.flightglobal.com/articles...s-a350-fuselage-panel-on-a340.html

Axel

[Edited 2010-09-14 05:14:42]


Wer wenig weiss muss vieles glauben
22 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineshamrock350 From Ireland, joined Mar 2005, 6279 posts, RR: 14
Reply 1, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 14039 times:

Are those A350 windows on that panel as well, they look a different shape to the standard Airbus window or is that just my eyes playing tricks on me?

User currently offlinebrightcedars From Belgium, joined Nov 2004, 1286 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 13808 times:

I'm guessing this panel isn't the actual size of the panel for the A350 because presumably it wouldn't fit perfectly in a narrower A300-310-330-340 fuselage. It's just a test of materials or something.

So technically not even an A350 part is actually flying!  



I want the European Union flag on airliners.net!
User currently offlinefrancoflier From France, joined Oct 2001, 3613 posts, RR: 11
Reply 3, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 13706 times:

Quoting shamrock350 (Reply 1):
Are those A350 windows on that panel as well, they look a different shape to the standard Airbus window or is that just my eyes playing tricks on me?

They are. They must be in order for the test to be valid.

The new windows are bigger, as they take advantage of the CRFP strenght and, not least, to compete with the 787's windows. Though I think they are still smaller than those of its rival.



Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit posting...
User currently offlineoldeuropean From Germany, joined May 2005, 2027 posts, RR: 4
Reply 4, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 13691 times:

Quoting shamrock350 (Reply 1):
Are those A350 windows on that panel as well, they look a different shape to the standard Airbus window or is that just my eyes playing tricks on me?

You are right. They are a bit bigger and have a different shape.



Wer wenig weiss muss vieles glauben
User currently offlineThorben From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 13568 times:

Which test plane is that? The A340-300 or the A340-600?

User currently offlineoldeuropean From Germany, joined May 2005, 2027 posts, RR: 4
Reply 6, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 13500 times:

It's a A340-300.

http://blog.seattlepi.com/worldairli...rchives/220430.asp?from=blog_last3



Wer wenig weiss muss vieles glauben
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 7, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 13401 times:

Quoting oldeuropean (Thread starter):
Airbus test-flies a A350 fuselage panel on an A340.

Fascinating. I wonder if this is a shot across the bow to say well if we really cared to, we could make the A330 a plastic fantastic.


User currently offlineparapente From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2006, 1509 posts, RR: 10
Reply 8, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 12929 times:

Well at least they are testing their new plastic technology first - they are learning from others mistakes

User currently offline7673mech From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 696 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 12346 times:
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Quoting parapente (Reply 8):
they are learning from others mistakes

For the record - "others" never had a problem with the actual fuselage. So I am not sure what mistakes they are learning from. Too bad these posts always have to end up one mfg vs. another.


User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 18704 posts, RR: 58
Reply 10, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 9982 times:

Quoting parapente (Reply 8):
Well at least they are testing their new plastic technology first - they are learning from others mistakes

What mistakes of others are there to learn from? Boeing used barrels, which is a completely different method. And Boeing never had an issue with fuselage structural integrity. The 787's issues were mostly process issues not having to do with the technology itself but with Boeing's management (or lack thereof) of too many suppliers and too much outsourcing.

To my knowledge, nobody has ever built a fuselage out of CFRP panels before, so Airbus is blazing new trails in this regard.

My question is how they got the panel to perfectly fit the A40 fuselage. It's possible that this isn't an "A350 panel" at all, but rather an "A340 panel" made out of CFRP with some A350 features.

Quoting Baroque (Reply 7):

Fascinating. I wonder if this is a shot across the bow to say well if we really cared to, we could make the A330 a plastic fantastic.

That would make very little sense. New fuselage, new wings, new engines, and it's still an A330? If they were to do that, it would be very little additional work to just make an A360.

Boeing could just as well make a 767-500/600/700 out of CFRP with new engines and wings, too. But instead they made a 787.


User currently offlinecol From Malaysia, joined Nov 2003, 2087 posts, RR: 22
Reply 11, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 9767 times:

I am glad to hear they are using this to establish sound proofing requirements, Airbus certainly have this nailed. I hope the 787 competes more with Airbus in this area.

User currently offlineAesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 6114 posts, RR: 9
Reply 12, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 9079 times:

Quoting Baroque (Reply 7):
Fascinating. I wonder if this is a shot across the bow to say well if we really cared to, we could make the A330 a plastic fantastic.

No it's not. These test frames are always used to test a lot of things, from engines to winglets and other technologies.

I had heard about a sound test with a panel some time ago, is this a new revision of the panel or its sound proofing ?

My bad, it's because they talked about it last April : http://www.flightglobal.com/articles...fibre-skin-panel-on-a340-this.html




New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
User currently offlinedw747400 From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 1254 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 6056 times:

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 10):
Quoting parapente (Reply 8):
Well at least they are testing their new plastic technology first - they are learning from others mistakes

What mistakes of others are there to learn from? Boeing used barrels, which is a completely different method. And Boeing never had an issue with fuselage structural integrity.

To add to that, Boeing has been building test barrels for years, starting with the Sonic Cruiser concept. BOTH manufacturers are being very thorough when it comes to composite fuselages.



CFI--Certfied Freakin Idiot
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 14, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 5673 times:

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 10):
My question is how they got the panel to perfectly fit the A40 fuselage. It's possible that this isn't an "A350 panel" at all, but rather an "A340 panel" made out of CFRP with some A350 features.

Quoting Baroque (Reply 7):

Fascinating. I wonder if this is a shot across the bow to say well if we really cared to, we could make the A330 a plastic fantastic.

That would make very little sense. New fuselage, new wings, new engines, and it's still an A330? If they were to do that, it would be very little additional work to just make an A360.

Aesma is right and it would probably not lead to anything other than the current test. But the point is it could. The A340 fuse is essentially the same as a 330 fuse. It has to be an A340/330 panel or it would show strange bulges which does lead to a question of whether it is possibly to "panelise" an A330 or presumably anything else they cared to panelise - anyone care for an A321 with panels? The "fit" does seem remarkably good. Wonder what panels do for the internal dimensions of an existing design????

One of the great advantages of plastic fantastics is they are supposed to be more resistant to corrosion. So even without new wings or a new engine, there would be some advantages. And we have already had it "explained" how dead cheap it is to make a CFRP fuse. Aside from the actual costs seeming to have been a bit more than expected, the parts count on a plasticised 330 would presumably drop quite a bit. Might lead to nothing other than verifying the panels, but it seems a bit early that this rather remarkable test leads nowhere else at all!


User currently offlinetdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 15, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 3612 times:

Quoting Baroque (Reply 14):
It has to be an A340/330 panel or it would show strange bulges which does lead to a question of whether it is possibly to "panelise" an A330 or presumably anything else they cared to panelise - anyone care for an A321 with panels?

All current Boeing widebodies except the 787 use panel construction; I suspect Airbus is similar...what's changing here is the material, not the construction technique.

Quoting Baroque (Reply 14):
The "fit" does seem remarkably good. Wonder what panels do for the internal dimensions of an existing design????

Drill/cut on assembly tends to fit well and would have been, by far, the easiest way to do this. Existing designs do use panel construction, so there's no particular reason to think it would change the internal dimensions.

Tom.


User currently offlineAesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 6114 posts, RR: 9
Reply 16, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 3554 times:

Maybe he thinks the panel structure (stringers, etc.) is not the same so it could mean thinner or thicker panels. We don't know the details so...

Also, Airbus are made of panels, however the fuselage is not assembled from scratch with panels, rather, entire sections are assembled separately at several locations, and then put together on the final line.

Now, Baroque, of course (almost) anything is possible, but in the end it would cost too much for too few a benefit. Another example is laser welding of stringers and panels. It was developed for the A380, and could be used on all current Airbus products, yet only the A318 and A346 HGW use the technique, because they were developed last and included this in the design, so they were certified like that. Laser welding involves using a special aluminum.



New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 17, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 3382 times:

Quoting Aesma (Reply 16):
Maybe he thinks the panel structure (stringers, etc.) is not the same so it could mean thinner or thicker panels. We don't know the details so...

Also, Airbus are made of panels, however the fuselage is not assembled from scratch with panels, rather, entire sections are assembled separately at several locations, and then put together on the final line.

Indeed and indeed, alas also

Quoting Aesma (Reply 16):
but in the end it would cost too much for too few a benefit. Another example is laser welding of stringers and panels. It was developed for the A380, and could be used on all current Airbus products, yet only the A318 and A346 HGW use the technique, because they were developed last and included this in the design, so they were certified like that. Laser welding involves using a special aluminum.

is true or very likely to be true. But I at least do not know what (else) they are trying to find out with this particular panel. And AFAIK the 350 panels are going to be a heck of a lot bigger than the panels on any of the existing Airbus fuselages (not sure about the 380 though) and on the 380 we see with some of the wing members that Airbus is quite keen on using large structures - that wing panel is an amazing item.


User currently offline328JET From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 3136 times:

What i would really like to know is:


What weight difference has this CFRP panel in comparison to the original used material?


Would the weight saving make a new A330-generation possible with CFRP panels?

Lets say for the A330 tanker, freighter and medium haul pax market?


Just speculation:


Could this be a test for both the A350XWB and an updated A330-version?


User currently offlineAesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 6114 posts, RR: 9
Reply 19, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3095 times:

I would love an updated A330 but i doubt it, the A358 is bigger but not so much bigger as to justify the expense of making a new A330 to fit below, just like Boeing won't make a 757 replacement even if the 737 is smaller and the 787 bigger.


New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
User currently offlineBurkhard From Germany, joined Nov 2006, 4361 posts, RR: 2
Reply 20, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 18 hours ago) and read 2864 times:

Thanks for the post, this are the little steps involving hundreds of man year work that make up the progress.

Edit: It is not the final panel, since these are much longer.

[Edited 2010-09-16 00:51:18]

User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 21, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 2438 times:

Quoting Aesma (Reply 19):
I would love an updated A330 but i doubt it, the A358 is bigger but not so much bigger as to justify the expense of making a new A330 to fit below, just like Boeing won't make a 757 replacement even if the 737 is smaller and the 787 bigger.

All true and no doubt none of this would be the main purpose of plonking an A350-type panel on an A340, but it would also be surprising if that part of the exercise was the sole aim of Airbus. Just as B remained with the (later) 707 section for 50 years, so Airbus has stuck with the A300 and A320 fuselages for quite a while. They certainly could be exploring what else they could do with this basic plan. Wings are a different thing, but this could produce a way to modify fuselages. Of course Airbus might not have the slightest wish to do this, but either way they are hardly going to advertise their plans.


User currently offlineBoeEngr From United States of America, joined Feb 2010, 321 posts, RR: 34
Reply 22, posted (3 years 7 months 1 week 10 hours ago) and read 2176 times:

As far as the windows are concerned, you really need to experience them from the inside. They may not look much different from the outside, but when you're sitting in a 787 cabin, the window is remarkably bigger than what we're used to from either Boeing or Airbus. I expect the A350 windows will feel comparable to the 787 windows.

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