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Airbus Adjusts A350 Seat Config, Cuts Range  
User currently offlineFraport From Germany, joined Jul 2005, 144 posts, RR: 0
Posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 24597 times:

According to german website aero.de Airbus has "silently" adjusted standard seat configurations and range of the A350 family on its website.
Considering that most airlines will operate their A350s with just two insteaf of three classes, Airbus has increased the standard seat count for the A358 by 6, for the A359 by just 1 (???) and for the A351 by 19.
On the other hand they cut the range of each model: for the A358 by 250nm, for the A359 by 350nm and for the A351 by 400nm.

While I understand that more payload means less range, it's quite strange that 1 (one!) additional seat on the A359 leads to 350nm less range (down to 7,750 now). This raises the question if the flight tests revealed some performance shortfall?

Here's the link - sorry for German only: http://www.aero.de/news-18512/Neue-Reichweiten-fuer-Airbus-A350.html

42 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineap305 From India, joined Jan 2000, 588 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 24507 times:

This is already being discussed in the prototypes thread. This range/two class capacity figure is nothing new- it has been publicly known since 2011 and obviously has no relation to flight test performance given that the aircraft only flew in June of this year. All public indications from Airbus management has been that so far things are on track. I am not sure what's secretive about this?- do they expect Airbus to give a press release that their website is now updated?

[Edited 2013-11-13 00:54:37]

[Edited 2013-11-13 00:56:45]

User currently offlinesweair From Sweden, joined Nov 2011, 1827 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 24101 times:

Not good sounds like the initial 788 downgrade..

User currently offlineAA737-823 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 5873 posts, RR: 11
Reply 3, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 23679 times:

I wonder if it's in response to the so-called "Emiratization" of the 777-9X... since that airplane is becoming over-qualified for the job, perhaps Airbus is lowering some numbers to make the 350 more appealing to customers who feel snubbed by Boeing?
Especially since BA was complaining about too much range, as I recall.


User currently offlinewaly777 From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2012, 337 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 23674 times:

Hmm, the A359 is the most surprising with 1pax increase and that much range shortfall. Initial expectations had been for range increases and not the reverse, hopefully this is something that can be improved upon during testing.


The test of first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold 2 opposed ideas in the mind concurrently, and still function
User currently offlinetravelavnut From Netherlands, joined May 2010, 1627 posts, RR: 7
Reply 5, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 23647 times:

Quoting sweair (Reply 2):
Not good sounds like the initial 788 downgrade..

Nonsense, as been explained in the other thread the 2-class setup has more C-class seats and they're a lot heavier.



Live From Amsterdam!
User currently offlinesweair From Sweden, joined Nov 2011, 1827 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 23526 times:

Sure sounds like a performance shortfall to me.

User currently offlineEPA001 From Netherlands, joined Sep 2006, 4802 posts, RR: 40
Reply 7, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 23432 times:
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Quoting sweair (Reply 6):
Sure sounds like a performance shortfall to me.

It is not and it is already known for about 2 years that these are the numbers for a two class configured A350. So how would that qualify as a shortfall? This is exactly what is advertised and sold to the customers. So they know these numbers and have based their purchase decision on these numbers. Again, where is the shortfall?  


User currently offlinescbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 12630 posts, RR: 46
Reply 8, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 23386 times:
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Quoting sweair (Reply 6):
Sure sounds like a performance shortfall to me.

You can make it sound however you like, the simple fact is, this isn't 'news' since it has been known for quite some time.



Time flies like an arrow, but fruit flies like a banana!
User currently onlinebehramjee From Canada, joined Aug 2003, 4801 posts, RR: 44
Reply 9, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 23363 times:

like i had stated yesterday on the SAA thread, the actual flying range capability of any aircraft sold by both Boeing and Airbus is approximately 15% less than the published stat.

So if the A359 stated range is 15,000KM, it can operate with a full payload under normal conditions a maximum trip journey of 12,750KM.


User currently offlineap305 From India, joined Jan 2000, 588 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 23232 times:

I will try to make this easy

A.Kindly see this AIRBUS PRESENTATION FROM 2011:
http://www.aci-na.org/sites/default/...bus_update_for_aci-na_10-15-11.pdf

B. Go to the slide with the a350 range figures on PAGE 12

C. Carefully look at the figures for the a350 900

D. Compare them with the so called "new figures" at http://www.airbus.com/aircraftfamili...xwbfamily/a350-900/specifications/

At which point using some basic analytical thinking you should be able to conclude that:

These so called new figures have no relevance to current flight testing and do not suggest any shortfall SINCE THEY ARE FROM TWO YEARS AGO WHEN THE A350 WAS NOT YET IN FLIGHT TESTING.

There is quite clearly a mysterious weight difference between the two class "realistic" configuration and the 3 class setup. This mystery can only be solved if we have access to the different assumption of seat weight, ife, mission rules etc. There is also the fundamental fact that these marketing specs likely have little relevance to performance guarantees. Last but not least, John Leahy clearly suggested that the aircraft is performing to spec. The COO of a listed company is unlikely to say this if he was not particularly sure about things. My sincere apologies if this post was rude but people need to keep their biases aside when it comes to understanding what are basic facts- and I am not talking specifically about our a.net friends. This non story seems to be gathering its own ill informed momentum elsewhere.

[Edited 2013-11-13 03:26:22]

User currently offlineEPA001 From Netherlands, joined Sep 2006, 4802 posts, RR: 40
Reply 11, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 22933 times:
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Quoting ap305 (Reply 10):
I will try to make this easy

I think you were very successful with this attempt. It is indeed nothing new, nor is it any sort of sudden shortfall. That fact can not be made any clearer than the way you have put in your post.  


User currently offlinetravelavnut From Netherlands, joined May 2010, 1627 posts, RR: 7
Reply 12, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 22670 times:

Quoting sweair (Reply 6):
Sure sounds like a performance shortfall to me.

How come?!



Live From Amsterdam!
User currently offlineXT6Wagon From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 3417 posts, RR: 4
Reply 13, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 22635 times:

Quoting travelavnut (Reply 12):
Quoting sweair (Reply 6):
Sure sounds like a performance shortfall to me.

How come?!

787 range decrease from the extra weight from going from 8Y to 9Y has long been held to be a "performance shortfall" by all too many people here.


User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 4012 posts, RR: 4
Reply 14, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 22192 times:

Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 13):
787 range decrease from the extra weight from going from 8Y to 9Y has long been held to be a "performance shortfall" by all too many people here.

I've not seen any evidence of that here on A.net - adding in extra weight in the form of an additional column of seats and passengers will of course have a negative effect on the aircrafts performance, but that doesn't make it a performance short fall.


User currently offlinekevinkevin From United Kingdom, joined exactly 1 years ago today! , 117 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 18675 times:

Quoting moo (Reply 14):
but that doesn't make it a performance short fall.

Glad someone has sense.


User currently offlineastuteman From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 10108 posts, RR: 97
Reply 16, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 18584 times:
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Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 13):
787 range decrease from the extra weight from going from 8Y to 9Y has long been held to be a "performance shortfall" by all too many people here.

For a long time Boeing advertised the ranges of the 787-8 and -9 as a "range of distances. Most of us were smart enough to work out that the lower number related to the 9Y seating......

Quoting travelavnut (Reply 12):
How come?!

Because he's who he is?

Rgds


User currently offlinemham001 From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3681 posts, RR: 3
Reply 17, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 18018 times:

Quoting ap305 (Reply 10):
These so called new figures have no relevance to current flight testing and do not suggest any shortfall SINCE THEY ARE FROM TWO YEARS AGO WHEN THE A350 WAS NOT YET IN FLIGHT TESTING.

Ok I get that. So have members here been using those numbers in their modelling?


User currently offlinetortugamon From United States of America, joined Apr 2013, 3449 posts, RR: 10
Reply 18, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 17904 times:

Quoting Fraport (Thread starter):
Considering that most airlines will operate their A350s with just two instead of three classes

I am not sure that I accept this premise. On A358s and to a lesser extent A359 I imagine this might be true. However, on the A351 I would expect most configurations to have a first class cabin as the largest operators currently configure their 777s. 2-class 77Ws are not all that common.

Finally, I accept that first class is becoming less common in favor of more J seats but along with this change has arisen a large market for premium economy. Maybe some do not constitute premium economy as a true separate class the way some airlines currently configure and maybe 2 class seating estimates should be closer to 3-class configurations with premium economy, but I don't know if two-class seating estimates are that great of an indicator either.

However, There must a be marketing move here to be understood. Is Airbus trying to influence the image of their aircraft as larger as they see the market going even further to the right, or is this a response to the 777x and a desire to show that the A351 is a real competitor to the 777-9x. There obviously is an angle here that would be interesting to understand.

As many have stated, I do not see this as a performance short fall.

tortugamon


User currently offlineCRJ900 From Norway, joined Jun 2004, 2205 posts, RR: 1
Reply 19, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 16599 times:
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Quoting behramjee (Reply 9):
So if the A359 stated range is 15,000KM, it can operate with a full payload under normal conditions a maximum trip journey of 12,750KM.

12,750km is a pretty good range, I'd say. We're talking IST-LAX-SYD, SIN-LHR, FRA-SCL etc and they are some of the longest routes that most airlines will fly, most flights will be shorter than that. Are we getting too caught up in wanting 20-hour nonstops? SIA had to give it up eventually and many trip reports say ULH flights are just too long.



Come, fly the prevailing winds with me
User currently offlinetortugamon From United States of America, joined Apr 2013, 3449 posts, RR: 10
Reply 20, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 15987 times:

Quoting CRJ900 (Reply 20):
Are we getting too caught up in wanting 20-hour nonstops?

Come next month I don't think there will even be a 17-hour direct flight. 20 hrs are a little ways off.

Its not that newer aircraft need to be more capable, its that newer aircraft fly further with fewer pounds of aircraft. When weight is added (cargo) modern aircraft lose more range versus their predecessors. If modern aircraft fly 100nm per ton they also lose 100nm for every ton that is added.

tortugamon


User currently offlinelightsaber From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 13257 posts, RR: 100
Reply 21, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 15247 times:
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Airbus has been too aggressive in assumed 'fitting weights' in the past. This sounds like customers have demanded the promised range reflect the weight of actual fittings. I do not know how much this plays a role, but I would suspect this is the case.

Now, these assumed weight fittings didn't fool any customers. They know how much seats, WCs, galleys, and overhead bins weight.

Quoting Fraport (Thread starter):
On the other hand they cut the range of each model: for the A358 by 250nm, for the A359 by 350nm and for the A351 by 400nm.

The A358 doesn't surprise me. It will not be optimized (for weight) as previously promised. The A35J doesn't either. That plane has a high wing loading and that means small changes in weight greatly effect range.

The A359 does surprise me. I suspect the first production models will be overweight and Airbus wants to claim in a year they beat promised range.  
Quoting sweair (Reply 2):
Not good sounds like the initial 788 downgrade..

Not even in the same ballpark. The 788 dropped from 8200nm promised to 7400nm delivered (1st examples) and had to implement a MTOW increase ASAP (with altered structure) to have enough range for their customers. We're talking 7,750nm (late correction, I recalled the wrong promise range for the A359) range for the A359 before PIPs.

One thing about the new planes is they go further on every ton of fuel. So a miss in weight has a far greater impact on range. The math tells me the A359 will take off about 3t heavier than prior promise. Now, I don't know *anything* about the A359 coming in overweight, I'm just being realistic (or cynical, reader to decide). That is my interpretation.

The 788 was 6t overweight. See my post #15 in this thread:
AviationWeek - 787 Better Than Expected Fuel Burn (by pygmalion Jun 26 2012 in Civil Aviation)


Now, Boeing was supposed to meet promise weight starting with LN90. Did they? My rumor mill is claiming it will now be LN 130 to LN 140. But that isn't based off anything substantive. I do wonder if it will take the weight savings of the 789 tail to meet promise weight on the 788.    And the 788 will carry 9-across Y which should be another ~3t of payload which cuts range about 350nm... why does that number seem familiar.  

So unless Airbus cuts another 350+nm from the A359 range, we are not revisiting the 788 downgrade...

Quoting tortugamon (Reply 21):
When weight is added (cargo) modern aircraft lose more range versus their predecessors. If modern aircraft fly 100nm per ton they also lose 100nm for every ton that is added.

   Although that should be about 115nm per ton for the 788/A359.   

Edited to correct A359 promise/final range.

Lightsaber

[Edited 2013-11-13 12:05:35]


Societies that achieve a critical mass of ideas achieve self sustaining growth; others stagnate.
User currently offlineAesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 6724 posts, RR: 12
Reply 22, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 15211 times:

Doesn't Y+ count as a class ?


New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
User currently offlinetortugamon From United States of America, joined Apr 2013, 3449 posts, RR: 10
Reply 23, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 14863 times:

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 22):
That plane has a high wing loading and that means small changes in weight greatly effect range.

I have read on here that the A351 has a relatively low wing-loading that rivals the 777-9x. Though I confess that I have given up calculating it as the different wing area calculation methodologies get me frustrated.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 22):
Now, Boeing was supposed to meet promise weight starting with LN90. Did they? My rumor mill is claiming it will now be LN 130 to LN 140.

Aspire Aviation claims that they hit weight target a little earlier:

Quote:
LN103 787-8 meeting weight targets
http://www.aspireaviation.com/2013/0...ng-787-is-a-dream-come-true-again/

Quoting Aesma (Reply 23):
Doesn't Y+ count as a class ?

I guess it depends. Some airlines seem to just offer an extra 3-4" of pitch and hold everything else constant. And if they offer less then 8 rows of it then it could really not even impact the number of rows total. However, on recent wide bodies it is exceedingly more common to drop a seat or two per row and add pitch. I call this true premium economy versus the former I call economy plus. If its premium economy I think it should definitely be considered a separate class.

tortugamon


User currently offlineRuscoe From Australia, joined Aug 1999, 1576 posts, RR: 2
Reply 24, posted (11 months 1 week 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 13802 times:

Quoting scbriml (Reply 8):
You can make it sound however you like, the simple fact is, this isn't 'news' since it has been known for quite some time.

If it is a change since the design was frozen, then I can't see how the longth of time we have known it has any relevance.

Quoting ap305 (Reply 10):
John Leahy clearly suggested that the aircraft is performing to spec.

Well, what else is he going to say. You will recall Boeing repeatedly saying the 787 would meet promised performance also. The question is what spec. If you keep changing the spec of course you are going to meet it.

Quoting Fraport (Thread starter):
According to german website aero.de Airbus has "silently" adjusted standard seat configurations and range of the A350 family on its website.

Ok so maybe not "silently", but if you go to the current figures on the 350 site you will note that on the opening page the figures given are 315 pax for 7800nm, whilst in a subsequent page it is more than 300pax for 7750nm.

So it appears the article has taken the most optimistic figures 8100nm for 314 pax and compared that with the most current figures and come up with the numbers they have.

I would advise caution here, the numbers and wording from Airbus could indicate a small problem.

Ruscoe


25 kevinkevin : If a newly manufactured long-haul aircraft was unable to do those routes - especially LHR-SIN - there wouldn't be any point in the aircraft.
26 Post contains links ap305 : Kindly go to page 18 of this Airbus presentation from march 2009 http://services.penton.com/Images/SA...3rdAviationIndustrySuppliers_P.PDF It would a
27 billreid : I think what is broadly missing is what the airlines do. Planning will take each available frame and run an extensive analysis of possible routes and
28 Post contains images lightsaber : Thank you, that link stated LN103. So perhaps I just had a dyslexic moment? (LN103 vs. LN130) Good to hear the 788 is at weight. Everything I'm heari
29 Post contains links NeutronStar73 : So will I: http://leehamnews.wordpress.com/ I guess the presentation you were linking to was not jiving with the website, and I think that's where pe
30 ap305 : The presentation says 315 passengers for 7800nm and the Airbus website shows 315 passengers for 7750nm... Whats not jiving for you? And whats with th
31 Ruscoe : Thankyou for that, however I have a print out from the Airbus website dated 9/4/2010 which quotes range of 8300nm. Also have a Flight Global article
32 ap305 : I would guess different seat weights, galley configs, mission rules, ife configuration etc etc. The 315/2 class at 7750-7800 seem to have been consta
33 BoeingVista : As a change in OEW caused by heavier customer furnished equipment, its not rocket science. But if you want to see a conspiracy you go right ahead.
34 Ruscoe : Fair crack of the whip ! The furnishings etc etc would be the same now as 5 years ago, or if anything lighter, but that is irrelevant. The MTOW has n
35 Post contains images lightsaber : I think too many analysis departments were tired of telling the BOD that planes didn't have the advertised mission range. Lightsaber
36 ap305 : As has been explained, this is likely down to differing aircraft configurations in terms of seats,ife, galleys etc. i.e there is likley a fundamental
37 Post contains images EPA001 : Good question. . Fact is, there just is no new shortfall as suggested, the numbers are steady since design freeze. And all is on track during flight
38 BoeingVista : OEW changes effect range even if MTOW remains the same as I say this is not rocket science. The weight of business suites has been going up to the le
39 motorhussy : Excuse my ignorance but what does the acronym stand for?
40 mham001 : Center of gravity.
41 parapente : What IAG have done is rather clever. First they are IAG so have the flexibility to switch the aircraft to Airbus loyal Iberia. Second they have 6 ( I
42 billreid : You understand this. It would be interesting to have a thread discussing Aircraft Route and long range planning analysis. We sit and discuss the diff
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