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A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:20 pm

Continuing the discussion from here, as Part 3 has gotten too long :

A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 3 (by LipeGIG Apr 2 2012 in Civil Aviation)
 
CM
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:34 pm

Ferpe finished the last thread with a nice summary from AW of several key aspects of the program, including the absence of wings to the FAL. This seems like a good place to begin the new thread.

Quoting ferpe:

AW has a summary article of some discussions with Evrard and the info from the last news conference at Farnborough, there are some more tidbits in there:

http://www.aviationweek.com/Article....l/avd_07_12_2012_p01-02-475782.xml

WINGS
There are a total of 5 wing halves being produced right now. Here my take on their oder and use: 2 for MSN001, 2 for MSN5000 and one for the fatigue tests. The ones for MSN001 goes to Bremen this month IMO, the MSN5000 ones goes to TLS in August according to Evrard and the MSN001 will get to TLS in October.

A350 Program Head Didier Evrard says Airbus hopes to be able to mitigate that development and recoup some time with the help of a physical wing mock-up in Bremen, Germany, that will help accelerate the learning curve in production and the equipping process. Five wings are being built together, and the improvements will apply to all of them (I think this is an AW comment, it does not make sense, only MSN001 winghalves goes to Bremen. There is no point in putting a lot of systems and high lift devices on static and fatigue test specimens IMO).

FAL
Fuselage Section 11/14 for MSN001 will come to Toulouse from the plant in St. Nazaire, France, “in the coming days,” says Evrard; the rest of the fuselage is expected at the end of September. By the time of entry into service, about 20 aircraft will be “in various stages of completion,” Evrard says. The flight test campaign will require four aircraft plus a fifth for route proving.

FIRST FLIGHT
"Airbus plans to confirm the A350’s first flight by the end of October, a decision that will coincide with delivery of the wing for MSN1, the first flight test aircraft." according to AW.

A350-1000
Evrard also says detailed load calculation has started on the redesigned A350-1000. “We are going to do what we decided a year ago.” Airbus is increasing the maximum takeoff weight from 298 to 308 tons and payload by four tons. Engine thrust will be increased from 93,000 to 97,000 lb. Final assembly is planned to start in mid-2015, and service entry will follow in mid-2017. Evrard notes that because the aircraft is a stretched variant, there is much less risk involved in future development, compared with the -900.
 
PHX787
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:45 pm

First flight at the end of October... That sounds a tad ambitious but I think they can pull it off!
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CM
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:58 pm

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 2):
First flight at the end of October... That sounds a tad ambitious but I think they can pull it off!

They intend to confirm the A350-900 first flight date by October. Not fly the airplane at that time.
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:59 pm

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 2):

First flight at the end of October... That sounds a tad ambitious but I think they can pull it off!

If only you were right. October is when Airbus plans to confirm the date of A350’s first flight
 
ferpe
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 9:45 pm

Re the 350-1000:

Quoting AW (Reply 1):
Final assembly is planned to start in mid-2015, and service entry will follow in mid-2017

I think AW misunderstood Evrard here, start of production mid-2015 for an EIS of mid-2017 makes sense IMO. I think that is the same as for the 789, its first parts have started production now for a start of test early-mid 2013 and EIS early-mid 2014.
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CM
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 9:56 pm

We did not get an A350 program update at FAS (that I am aware of), but we did get a few relevant statements from Didier Evrard which help us keep some tabs on the details of the program. Among them:
  • My take on Evrard's comments:
    the wing for the fatigue test aircraft will arrive in Toulouse at the end of August.

  • Wings for MSN5000 were not specifically addressed, but assumed to be 2 of the "5 wings which are being built together" in Filton, and therefore not shipped to Toulouse yet

  • Fuselage Section 11/14 for MSN1 will come to Toulouse “in the coming days,” with the rest of the fuselage expected at the end of September.

  • Airbus still plans for the first A350-900 to fly before mid-2013

Also of note is that Airbus has not yet announced the completion of functional testing, which was scheduled for completion in January. Given the above, I have tweaked my previously posted overview of the A350 schedule in the following ways:

  • Completion of Functional Test has slid.

  • MSN5000 wings are still in Filton, delaying start of static test to August + some time for assembly, test rigging & instrumentation.

  • FAL start for MSN001 is imminent, but delayed from the most recently published schedule, which called for first half of 2012.

  • First flight is now "before mid 2013" rather than "fist half or 2013" which has been the messaging since 2011 - I take that to mean 2Q 2013.

In light of these items, the updated A350 schedule evolution looks like this:



As before, I have made a comparison with 787 actual development:



And the same comparison with major 787 schedule shocks removed:



Based on all of the above, I estimate the A350 program is on pace to achieve a mid 2015 EIS. This is barring any unforeseen disruptions to the program. The next 6-9 months will be critical and will tell us a great deal, as Airbus must complete several key milestones in rapid succession in order to avoid day-for-day type slides to the program:

  • Begin static test in 3Q2012

  • Begin fatigue Test in 1Q 3013

  • Deliver a completed MSN001 to the flight test organization in 1Q 2013

I suspect this will be a busy thread in the coming months and I suspect there are more than a few Airbus workers who will not be getting their 3 weeks off in August!

Cheers,

CM
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 10:30 pm

Quoting CM (Reply 3):
Quoting Wolbo (Reply 4):

OK that makes much more sense, I guess I read Ferpe's report wrong
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Fri Jul 13, 2012 10:37 pm

Quoting CM (Reply 6):
Based on all of the above, I estimate the A350 program is on pace to achieve a mid 2015 EIS

I don't have the same knowledge as you but I would like to know why you think the flight test period will take some 20-24 months instead of the given 12 months by A planning, this barring any problems?

I concur that things are in a critical period, in November Bregier clearly said A planned to have the static frame finished by Q2 12 and the wings for it should start the drilling just after New Year for a delivery mid spring. Now 8 months later we are at August, about a 5 month delay in 8 months    , so things are not running to plan. But why this double test period? Have they planned it wrongly or will just those little things keep on eating the time?
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:26 am

Quoting ferpe (Reply 8):
I would like to know why you think the flight test period will take some 20-24 months instead of the given 12 months by A planning

Hi Ferpe. I guess my above post could have used a little more explanation. My estimate for flight test is Airbus' original timeline of 15 months. The real delays I see for the program are happening now and over the next year. Two areas in particular make me believe we have around 1 year already baked into the A350 program (i.e. I don't believe it is recoverable).

  • Static test is a pacing item for first flight. Airbus originally had static test beginning in April. The static frame is still not complete and to get there, the wings must be attached. This will be the first wing join for the A350 and will not be done quickly. Once the static frame is complete, it must go through a very complex test rigging and instrumentation process before testing can begin. I do not believe we will see the static frame begin testing until well into next year. Even once static testing begins, a sequence of testing must be accomplished before the frame can undergo the necessary tests which will prove enough structural envelope for first flight to occur.

  • Completion of MSN001 must follow the static frame, simply due to how Airbus has scheduled FAL flow. As the static frame is already delayed, I expect a knock-on impact to MSN001. After MSN001 is structurally complete, the systems and test instrumentation must be integrated, functionally tested and a number of other tests must be completed (low frequency wave, vibration, etc). These hurdles must be crossed (as well as the static tests) before MSN001 can be delivered to flight test for "gauntlet" testing (Boeing term. I can't remember the name Airbus gives this test). Airbus originally scheduled 12 months from start FAL to First Flight, which is really sporty (the 787 took around 20 months, and that's not counting a 4 month schedule penalty (my estimate) for rolling out an empty shell). In Airbus' most recent schedule, they have shortened this period to around 8 months, which I simply do not believe is achievable.

In my view, even without unforeseen problems, the A350 is 12 months late for the following reasons:
  • MSN001 delivered 9 months late to flight test
  • Flight testing taking 15 months rather than 12

If there's an unforeseen issue, of course, all bets are off.
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:33 am

Quoting CM (Reply 9):
In my view, even without unforeseen problems, the A350 is 12 months late for the following reasons:
MSN001 delivered 9 months late to flight test
Flight testing taking 15 months rather than 12

Your motivation looks very well supported by your documentation. The program slipping by that much could easily be that long by looking at your numbers. I hope you are wrong, but I guess you can not be far off the marks you stated.  
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 4:57 am

Quoting CM (Reply 9):
Completion of MSN001 must follow the static frame, simply due to how Airbus has scheduled FAL flow.

You would have to motive that in more detail as well , remember they have 2 complete FAL lines already, what would MSN001 have to wait for or follow?

Quoting CM (Reply 9):
Airbus originally scheduled 12 months from start FAL to First Flight, which is really sporty (the 787 took around 20 months, and that's not counting a 4 month schedule penalty (my estimate) for rolling out an empty shell). In Airbus' most recent schedule, they have shortened this period to around 8 months, which I simply do not believe is achievable.

The MSN001 FAL start now in July with section 11/14 being delivered and if we believe A it is fully equipped. Then there is a 1 month delay until section 15/21 and 16/18 arrives in September and the wings in October. That is a MSN001 FAL join completion of 3 months if they stick to this schedule which is one month longer then it should. It would be the second time they do all these operations (MSN5000 precedes in all operations) so I think we can assume the joining going as planned especially as it has run smoothly for MSN5000 (we don't know how the MSN5000 wingjoin goes but it uses the same design as the A380, should not be anything new in the principle except it is a new project and new samples of what I believe is the same tooling as the 380, the join scaffolding and tooling looks the same).

The second item would be all the system integration and test after join, here we have no visibility if A have achieved the maturity they talk about, ie it can go to plan or can take longer. If we assume 12 months FAL to first flight is doable (the 350 MN001 trailing 787 and 380 should have less traveled work and more tested systems PreFAL, at least that is the theory   ) I would see MSN001 flying August next year or thereabouts, ie theoretical EIS in the autumn of 2014 with a flight test program with no hiccups (which is not very probable IMO, but lets use it just for the discussions sake).

[Edited 2012-07-13 22:36:01]
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 5:42 am

Quoting ferpe (Reply 11):
remember they have 2 complete FAL lines already

I was not aware both FALs were operational. Thanks for that tidbit! I'll need to think about if/how that changes my assessment. It will definitely prevent MSN5000 assembly from holding up MSN1 (note the gap between ZA001 FAL start and Static Test start for the 787. In part, you can point to the pace of ZA001 in FAL for the timing of the 787 static test.) We'll need to see how quickly MSN1 comes together structurally in the coming months. Static testing will still pace the beginning of flight test, but having no pipeline constraints on MSN1 should take some pressure off of the integration, instrumentation and functional / ground test timeline.
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 7:38 am

Quoting CM (Reply 12):
having no pipeline constraints on MSN1 should take some pressure off of the integration, instrumentation and functional / ground test timeline.

Lets keep this highly interesting discussion going during the autumn, it is at the core of the interest for the 350 program I presume. We should all thank you for having taken the time to do these instructive diagrams and to help us decode what challenges the 350 team have up-ahead    .
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 8:06 am

Quoting CM (Reply 12):
Static testing will still pace the beginning of flight test, but having no pipeline constraints on MSN1 should take some pressure off of the integration, instrumentation and functional / ground test timeline.

The majority of the fatigue/static testing from what I understand has been completed. They have already had 3 different sections already under test, from what I understand they have been doing 3000 flights per week. They are doing the A350 ground test schedule differently to previous aircraft.

EF1 - sections 11, 12 and 13 (Toulouse, France)
EF2 - sections 15-22, including the belly fairing and wing box (Erding, Germany)
EF3 - sections sections 16-19 including the empennage and stub vertical fin (Hamburg, Germany).

The frame that is in the FAL is going to be used to complete the tests, but I do not think those test would prevent first flight.

Likewise for flight testing, a lot of the systems have already been flight tested in different aircraft, some by Airbus, some by their suppliers (from memory I think the air data system and flight control software has already flown on the A380) . Other systems, control surfaces, gear has already been tested in iron birds. they have also got their cabin interior test piece, that has been able to test in integration and testing of the interior.

I think the A350 will have less flight testing to do than what they had for the A380.

I would not be surprised to learn if Airbus has already have a number of A350 items certified by EASA/FAA.
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 8:29 am

Quoting CM (Reply 6):
Based on all of the above, I estimate the A350 program is on pace to achieve a mid 2015 EIS. This is barring any unforeseen disruptions to the program.

The difficulty with focussing on removing just the "major" shocks is that it is abundantly clear that the whole configuration management and sequencing of the programme on the 787 got out of kilter. It's pretty clear from the "roll-out" that there were already going to be dozens of planes sitting around even before the "major shocks" came into play.

Just because the 787 took that long even without the "major shocks" doesn't mean the A350 necessarily will.
Of course it doesn't mean it won't either
Will that happen to Airbus, or have they learned

Quoting CM (Reply 6):
The next 6-9 months will be critical and will tell us a great deal

Yep. Popcorn time  

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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:21 pm

Quoting ferpe (Reply 13):
We should all thank you for having taken the time to do these instructive diagrams

My pleasure. If you get other info on schedule updates from A, just post the links and I will keep it updated.

Quoting zeke (Reply 14):
The majority of the fatigue/static testing from what I understand has been completed.

True. The large assemblies will all have had their own static tests, including ultimate load factor.

Quoting zeke (Reply 14):
I do not think those test would prevent first flight.

The wing load testing must precede Type Inspection Authorization, and the new rules require this test to be done with the wing attached to a pressurized fuselage (i.e on the full scale static frame). While I suppose it would be possible for Airbus to get to first flight before doing the LLF and ULF wing tests, they would then be stuck with an airplane that has a limited flight envelope and which cannot be used for cert testing (the regulators will not fly on the airplane or let tests be done for cert score prior to TIA).

Quoting zeke (Reply 14):
I would not be surprised to learn if Airbus has already have a number of A350 items certified by EASA/FAA.

I'm sure they must. It is standard practice (at least with Boeing) to divorce as much of the cert effort as possible from the flight test program. This usually includes integration labs, flying testbeds and discrete structural testing for things like landing gear and brakes. I don't think you could do it any other way.

Quoting astuteman (Reply 15):
It's pretty clear from the "roll-out" that there were already going to be dozens of planes sitting around even before the "major shocks" came into play.

Indeed. Airbus expects 20 A350s to be built before EIS, which will be another interesting number to watch.

Quoting astuteman (Reply 15):
Just because the 787 took that long even without the "major shocks" doesn't mean the A350 necessarily will.

It is mostly just coincidence my A350 EIS guess (and it's just a guess) lines up with my "787 without shocks" timeline. The delays I anticipate for the A350 are based on what's happening now, and what I believe is too little time remaining for getting the flight test fleet in the air and type certification testing completed.

One item I need to think on a bit... the A350 has only one airframe/engine config to flight test and certify. This certainly takes some effort out of the flight test program, relative to the 787. I need to go decide if this makes 12 months workable or if the original 15 months still seems right. Regardless, we're all in agreement on one thing...

Quoting astuteman (Reply 15):
Popcorn time

Postscript: I suspect that given I work for Boeing, there may be some who wonder about my interest and motivation for prognosticating about the A350 program. It's a fair question. I have spent my career at Boeing getting airplanes designed and certified, which makes this whole process highly interesting to me and relevant to what I do at work. Astuteman asks this question about the A350 program relative to the challenges of 787 development:

Quoting astuteman (Reply 15):
Will that happen to Airbus, or have they learned?

This pretty much sums up why I pay attention to the A350 program; The 787 program thought they had learned from the A380 program, the A350 program has tried to learn from the 787 program. All made key changes, but all also created new challenges for themselves along the way. At some point, we need to figure out how to stop letting our customers down with what have become almost routine delays coming out of airplane development programs. The fact that several key industry leaders have made statements hinting they now simply expect delays as a part of new airplane development programs tells you we have created a very low expectation among our customers and need to figure out how to do better.
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:36 pm

Quoting zeke (Reply 14):
I would not be surprised to learn if Airbus has already have a number of A350 items certified by EASA/FAA.

They absolutely have to have. It's physically impossible to certify everything in by flight test in anything like 15-24 months...you'd take something like 3-4 years. You certify everything by analysis that you can, and much of that can be done prior to flight test.

Quoting zeke (Reply 14):
The frame that is in the FAL is going to be used to complete the tests, but I do not think those test would prevent first flight.

They need at least a few tests on a full frame to get an acceptable flight envelope; although they might be able to fly prior to that it would be very much like the 787 pre-side-of-body-fix...flyable but not very useful.

Quoting zeke (Reply 14):
Likewise for flight testing, a lot of the systems have already been flight tested in different aircraft, some by Airbus, some by their suppliers (from memory I think the air data system and flight control software has already flown on the A380) .

This was true for the 787 too (they used a 777). This is a great risk reduction technique but it's also common so the gain is already "baked in" to the schedule.

Quoting zeke (Reply 14):
Other systems, control surfaces, gear has already been tested in iron birds. they have also got their cabin interior test piece, that has been able to test in integration and testing of the interior.

This is also normal for most systems; I think the A350 is the first to do a proper cabin systems iron bird, which is a great thing. That can be a pacing item on some, though not all, programs.

Quoting CM (Reply 16):
It is mostly just coincidence my A350 EIS guess (and it's just a guess) lines up with my "787 without shocks" timeline.

I don't think it's a coincidence; ultmately, both OEM's can keep the birds in the air for about the same time per day and they have to satisfy the same stack of regulations using mostly the same tools and techniques. If you back out program unique "shocks", they should end up pretty close.

Tom.
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sun Jul 15, 2012 12:30 am

Quoting astuteman (Reply 15):
Yep. Popcorn time  

IIRC, some prefer nuts...  
Quoting CM (Reply 16):
I have spent my career at Boeing getting airplanes designed and certified, which makes this whole process highly interesting to me and relevant to what I do at work.

I'm quite happy that you are using a.net to further your interests. We're all the better for it!

Quoting CM (Reply 16):
At some point, we need to figure out how to stop letting our customers down with what have become almost routine delays coming out of airplane development programs.

I've made this point before, and some feel the opposite (and the next bit of your posting is an example of that train of thought), but I also think it is very important for the health of the industry.

Poor program performance will merely make it more difficult for the decision makers to approve the next program, and will make customers want stiffer guarantees written into their contracts, which also makes it more difficult for the decision makers to approve the next program.

I could go on, but I don't want to risk derailing this excellent thread.
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r2rho
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sun Jul 15, 2012 12:32 pm

Coming from the previous thread which has been locked:

Thanks for the info, do you see the Cabin0 test having bearing on MSN001 first flight or rather MSN002 (the first cabin equipped test aircraft) efficiency as a test bed?

the cabin0 is mostly aiming at cabin systems, that's for sure. but most of the a/c systems are simulated or can be connected as a real hardware to check communication between the systems. e.g. the electrical distribution system can either be simulated or connected as real hardware....
so i would say that important information even for MSN001 can be obtained.


In my view Cabin0 will not be critical for MSN1, but for MSN2. Of course, any lessons that can be learned for MSN1 are always welcome (functioning of the air conditioning packs, for instance), but I don't think tests there will be a blocking point for first flight. The critical test stand for MSN1 FF, from a systems point of view, would be the Iron Bird.

Quoting ferpe (Reply 11):
remember they have 2 complete FAL lines already, what would MSN001 have to wait for or follow?

I was not aware that the 2nd FAL line was ready, I believe it will shorten some delays in CM's current assumption for his diagram (which I consider well fundamented, by the way).
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Sun Jul 15, 2012 12:59 pm

Quoting r2rho (Reply 19):
I was not aware that the 2nd FAL line was ready,

I don't have positive information the second FAL line is finished, if it is no issue, if it is not I don't think it would cause much of a conflict anyhow given A stand concept. MSN5000 is presently at station 40 which is tooled for hanging of wings, engine pylons, MLG, VTP, HTP IIRC:

http://i298.photobucket.com/albums/mm262/ferpe_bucket/FALoverview.jpg

This is also where first power on should happen and some cabin installations would be done in parallel to the fitting activities. The major system test area is station 30 where also the rest of the cabin gets fitted.

MSN5000 is fully equipped less wings, pylons and MLG by now IMO and those things will get fitted in August. The little power on checking that needs to get done at 40 for a static frame should be done quickly if not already done. After that I don't see why a static frame needs to go to 30 (and thereby potentially block that station), it should go to the static test hangar and get all the test gear fitted there I presume (or A could fit what they could right now, why let MSN5000 just stand there, either get the guys over to station 40 or roll the frame to the test hangar and then back  Wow! ).

Given that MSN001 should be in station 40 come October and then 30 after that I don't see a conflict even if A has not activated at dual FAL for all stations yet. Station 50, the fuselage join is free already.

[Edited 2012-07-15 06:35:06]
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ferpe
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:58 am

Quoting kanban (Reply 268):
I am surprised that it (the step by step hole checking procedure) wasn't in the original build plan for the first couple sets since it is a whole new process and tooling.

Me too and I have been giving it some thought. What could have happened is that the last tests just before "the real thing" ie drilling those unipiece 32m wingskins did not go to plan.

Of course the Broughton people have tested the drilling flatbed installations before active use. It is a CFRP to CFRP drill process and as such new to Broughton on that scale (but should not be new to Electroimpact, I guess they did the system to drill the 787 wingskins), the previous was Alu to Alu AFAIK. I don't think A drilled Alu to CFRP before at Broughton as the spars and rib feet are all Alu for the A380. They have a Alu to CFRP join for the 380 winghalves joining to the center wingbox (which has CFRP skins) but that is at TLS with a very different tooling setup.

Once the huge flatbed drilling systems were installed they probably started drilling and bolting on small test items, then did a final rehearsal on a bigger test setup. It might be that that last tests did not deliver expected results, we know that Bregier/Evrard did not have such information end 2011 as they then bravely indicated (Bregier at the investor conference) "we start drilling the wingcovers in the coming weeks" and that MSN5000 should be at FAL after new year and completed "soon".

As I understand from manufacturing sites drilling CFRP is a bit tricky, it is for instance hard on the cutting material, the CF fibers should be hard to cut. I also understand the drill system must be very stiff not to vibrate in resonance with the wingbox items it drills. Though A has a lot of experience in CFRP to CFRP mating they have not mated materials this thick before AFAIK.

[Edited 2012-07-16 03:18:16]
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kmz
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 10:45 am

Quoting ferpe (Reply 21):
Though A has a lot of experience in CFRP to CFRP mating they have not mated materials this thick before AFAIK.

Isn't the A400M situation a similar one?
 
RubberJungle
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:29 am

MSN1 forward fuselage arrives in Toulouse - pictures here:

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...-a350-nears-final-assembly-374387/
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:33 am

Quoting RubberJungle (Reply 23):
MSN1 forward fuselage arrives in Toulouse

Very nice picture, and good news of course.  
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 12:07 pm

Nice, here the Airbus press release

http://www.airbus.com/newsevents/new...-a350-xwb-arrives-at-toulouse-fal/

They are placing the section in the reception area P59 where they normally install outsized things like galley and toilet fundaments which does not fit trough the doors once the fuselage have been joined. Here the pictures, the one on the section is a bit higher resolution so if you click on it you can study the details like air data vanes, the funny structure on the cargo door middle etc. Also the radome is fitted, a pity they did not remove the plastic protection otherwise one could have seen the nose profile for the first time. Now one can imagine it:

http://i298.photobucket.com/albums/mm262/ferpe_bucket/MSN001section11-14.jpg

Here the section being put in P59, they might install some big things there before towing it to P50. No point in hanging round in P50 until the other sections arrive  :

http://i298.photobucket.com/albums/mm262/ferpe_bucket/MSN001section11-14inP59s.jpg

To the right and behind the section one can see the bridge/scaffolding to get access to the innards. Don't know why but seeing the nose from this angle it reminds me of a baby 747 and from the side it is more a DC8  Wow! .

[Edited 2012-07-16 05:12:46]
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AirbusA370
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 12:56 pm

Quoting ferpe (Reply 25):
funny structure on the cargo door middle

Emergency exit for the flight test crew I would bet...
 
kmz
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 1:23 pm

why is door 2 missing? A picture of the inside would REALLY be interesting to see the level of completion....
 
Ruscoe
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 1:53 pm

Quoting ferpe (Reply 25):
the nose from this angle it reminds me of a baby 747

Yes I agree. If that is the final radome shape then it looks very different than I expected.

Perhaps the legth of nose forward of the cockpit windows is to allow the tall landing gear to retract forward.

Ruscoe
 
astuteman
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 1:57 pm

Quoting Ruscoe (Reply 28):
Perhaps the legth of nose forward of the cockpit windows is to allow the tall landing gear to retract forward

My suspicion would be the same root cause as the long forehead on the A380, namely delaying the onset of supersonic shockwaves over the forebody at the higher mach cruise numbers this machine will be designed for.....

Rgds
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 2:23 pm

Quoting kmz (Reply 22):
Isn't the A400M situation a similar one?

Yes and no (I always forget the A400 as a CFRP Airbus frame  ). The material is indeed CRFP covers and spars with mostly Alu ribs (AFAIK) and the supplier of the jigs and drilling system is Electroimpact. The setup is similar to A380 howeever and the dimensions are smaller, about 2/3. Also the production rate is more 380 then 350, guess that is why they kept the principle. Production is in Airbus Filton where vertical jigs with platforms are used which carry the (I presume) manual drilling systems up and down the wingbox. There is a descriptive press release from one of Electroimpacts subsuppliers here with a photo of the setup:

http://www.boschrexroth.com/country_...37/BR7037_Airbus_A400M_-_FINAL.pdf

[Edited 2012-07-16 07:24:51]
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zeke
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 2:45 pm

Quoting ferpe (Reply 21):

Suggest you have a look at this presentation, it gives some further insight into the drilling process being used in differnt parts of the airframe, and some idea of what is inside the wing materials wise.

http://www.carbon-composites.eu/site..._ag_mpbf_230910_mapal_15062011.pdf

Quoting kmz (Reply 27):
A picture of the inside would REALLY be interesting to see the level of completion....

A while back they showed this photo at one of the innovation days, from Flightblogger


The flight deck of the first A350 XWB (MSN1) is beginning to take shape in St. Nazaire. by Jon Ostrower, on Flickr
We are addicted to our thoughts. We cannot change anything if we cannot change our thinking – Santosh Kalwar
 
ferpe
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:13 pm

Quoting zeke (Reply 31):
Quoting ferpe (Reply 21):Suggest you have a look at this presentation, it gives some further insight into the drilling process being used in differnt parts of the airframe, and some idea of what is inside the wing materials wise.

Thanks, have been working with some of these companies in past, didn't know they were suppliers to the 350 program.

Quoting kmz (Reply 27):
A picture of the inside would REALLY be interesting to see the level of completion...

I can only complement with a closeup on the nose landing gear bay, seems pretty complete with tubes etc:

http://i298.photobucket.com/albums/mm262/ferpe_bucket/MSN001NLGbay.jpg
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kanban
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:03 pm

Quoting zeke (Reply 31):
it gives some further insight into the drilling process being used in differnt parts of the airframe, and some idea of what is inside the wing materials wise.

http://www.carbon-composites.eu/site...1.pdf


Interesting and informative.. however found a term on page 26 I'm not familiar with: "Low cost per howl"   
 
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Stitch
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:14 pm

Quoting kanban (Reply 33):
Interesting and informative.. however found a term on page 26 I'm not familiar with: "Low cost per howl"      

Perhaps it refers to health care when a worker drops a spanner on their toe?   
 
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zeke
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:58 pm

Quoting kanban (Reply 33):

Classic Oxford-Deutsch, hole-howl(noun)
We are addicted to our thoughts. We cannot change anything if we cannot change our thinking – Santosh Kalwar
 
travelavnut
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:02 pm

I really have nothing to add except that I want to thank the likes of CM, ferpe, Stitch and zeke for their excellent contributions. For me at least one of the most informative series of threads on a.net, so please, don't stop!  
Live From Amsterdam!
 
Aircellist
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:35 pm

Quoting travelavnut (Reply 36):
I really have nothing to add except that I want to thank the likes of CM, ferpe, Stitch and zeke for their excellent contributions. For me at least one of the most informative series of threads on a.net, so please, don't stop!  

Allow me to hugely second that!
"When I find out I was wrong, I change my mind. What do you do?" -attributed to John Maynard Keynes
 
N14AZ
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 7:00 pm

Quoting ferpe (Reply 25):
Also the radome is fitted, a pity they did not remove the plastic protection otherwise one could have seen the nose profile for the first time.

I didn't want to wait that long. Not 100% sure if I got it right but this how it looks if I connect the countour lines:



[Edited 2012-07-16 12:02:14]
 
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Laddie
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 7:17 pm

Quoting N14AZ (Reply 38):
Not 100% sure if I got it right but this how it looks if I connect the countour lines:

Is the nose a big secret? There's a 3-view here:
http://www.airbus.com/aircraftfamili...xwbfamily/a350-900/specifications/
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 7:30 pm

Quoting Laddie (Reply 39):
Is the nose a big secret? There's a 3-view here:

Naaah, come one. These are the graphics produced by some IT guys drinking too much Red Bull and eating too much junk food.   Let's see how the real plane looks like.
 
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Laddie
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 7:37 pm

Quoting N14AZ (Reply 40):
These are the graphics produced by some IT guys

LOL. I work for another large airplane OEM, and if Airbus produces those graphics like we do, then the Graphics department uses CATIA 3-D images from Engineering. Unless AB goes to the trouble of creating fictional airplanes to throw off the competition, those 3-views on the website should be pretty accurate.
 
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:12 pm

Quoting N14AZ (Reply 38):
I didn't want to wait that long.

Nor did I    but I ended up with something that could be mistaken for a goose    so I stopped. Yours is pretty close to reality me thinks, a bit animal like but I can't decide which  .
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Confuscius
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:45 pm

Quoting N14AZ (Reply 38):

That's the smallest MLG I've seen for such a large airplane.
Ain't I a stinker?
 
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Laddie
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:52 pm

Quoting Confuscius (Reply 43):
hat's the smallest MLG I've seen for such a large airplane.

It's an electric taxi system that Airbus is testing. But we are getting off topic...
 
Aircellist
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 10:54 pm

Quoting ferpe (Reply 42):
Quoting N14AZ (Reply 38):
I didn't want to wait that long.

Nor did I    but I ended up with something that could be mistaken for a goose    so I stopped. Yours is pretty close to reality me thinks, a bit animal like but I can't decide which  .

I has something goosish indeed... Will the Canada geese flock follow the big sister?

... As far as it does not precede it...

As a nose, it is much less Comet-like than its competitor. Yet, maybe a tad Nimrod-like?
"When I find out I was wrong, I change my mind. What do you do?" -attributed to John Maynard Keynes
 
WingedMigrator
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:25 pm

Quoting N14AZ (Reply 38):
Not 100% sure if I got it right but this how it looks if I connect the countour lines

It's not right... you're missing the gear doors, which add some "chin". They meet a downward protrusion of the radome that is concealed by the tarp in the original photo.
 
N14AZ
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Tue Jul 17, 2012 5:54 am

Quoting WingedMigrator (Reply 46):
you're missing the gear doors, which add some "chin". They meet a downward protrusion of the radome that is concealed by the tarp in the original photo.

That's actually something I did not consider correctly. Here is my second try

 
kmz
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Tue Jul 17, 2012 6:45 am

Quoting ferpe (Reply 32):
seems pretty complete with tubes etc

that indeed look good! let's hope the fuselage parts arriving from the other side of the Rhine are completed in a similar way  
 
ferpe
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RE: A350 Prototypes Production Thread Part 4

Tue Jul 17, 2012 6:52 am

Quoting N14AZ (Reply 47):
Here is my second try

  

Those side windows makes the frame come alive, like a beautiful goose. I think it is a characterful and nice nose  Wow! .
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