A few interesting articles on the A350 in this week’s Flight International. Key points:
- The A350 will be certified as a variant of the A330.
- Increased use of lightweight materials such as composites, aluminium lithium and titanium resulting in (minus the engines) an 8t empty weight reduction compared to the A330. Including the heavier engines and strengthened structure, there is still a “small improvement” compared to the present aircraft.
- A350 wing is “dimensionally similar” and almost entirely composite with carbon fibre used on certain areas.
- Aerodynamic reductions will generate a 1% reduction in cruise drag, A380 style “droop nose” instead of inboard slats leading to a 3% drag improved for take-off/landing.
- A second engine supplier, probably RR but possibly P&W.
- Design freeze by mid-2005.
- 50 orders by the Paris Air Show; leading candidates include Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines and Northwest.
Max take-off 242 242
Max landing 182 189
Max zero fuel 170 177
Max fuel (litres) 139,100 139,100
Engine thrust (lb) 72,000 72,000
Range (km) 15,900 13,900
Pax (three-class) 245 285
Service entry H1 2010 H2 2010
List price ($m) 153.5 170.5
(Flight International 21/12/2004)