Goodbye Airbus A370 hello A350 XWB – extra wide-body

by Braniff on July 19, 2006

From the Airbus Press Release: The A350 XWB (extra wide-body) is Airbus’ response to market demand for a medium capacity long range wide-body family. Available from 2012, it will have an entirely new, uncompromised, 21st Century design with a new and wider fuselage for extra space and passenger comfort. It will also be extra efficient, extra environmentally friendly and quiet, as it will feature all the advanced technologies available in the first part of the 21st century, bringing the A380 experience to a new level.

Conceived from the outset to form a complete family of airliners, three basic passenger versions are being offered. They include the -800, -900 and the -1000 accommodating between 250 and 375 passengers in a range of different configurations to suit airline needs. An ultra long range version, the -900R, and a freighter -900F complete the family. Each basic model will have a range of 8,500 nm/15,800 km, the longest of any aircraft in this size category. The A350 XWB will also offer the lowest operating cost per seat of any aircraft in this size category.Whilst the Airbus product family covers all market segments, the A350 XWB is the most advanced aircraft family in its segment, thus significantly enhancing the overall Airbus product range. The A350 XWB is able to provide economically viable service on long-range markets and is equally attractive as a route opener or as a part of a multi-type Airbus fleet offering optimized network solutions. Airbus forecasts a demand for this product range, which covers a wide range of market applications, at some 4,600 aircraft over the next 20 years.Thanks to its wider fuselage, the A350 XWB will offer comfort levels equivalent to those of the A380. Seating in economy will be either eight abreast for high comfort or nine abreast for extra high efficiency, yet with the widest seats in the industry.

Thanks to its all new design, passengers will also enjoy more headroom. A great first for the A350 XWB family is the modular cabin which is designed to be reconfigurable overnight. This will enable airlines to easily adapt to specific seasonal needs and changing markets. There will also be crew rest compartments away from revenue generating areas.

Whilst the A350 XWB-800 will carry 270 passengers in three classes, the -900 will accommodate 314 passengers in a three-class layout and the -1000 around 350 passengers.The A350 XWB brings together the very latest in aerodynamics, design and advanced technologies to produce an aircraft a step ahead of future competition and a generation ahead of existing competition.

The A350 XWB family will have the highest content of new and advanced materials of any aircraft, including an extensive use of advanced alloys and CFRP (Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic) resulting in the lightest aircraft per seat in this category.

The all new composite wing design brings the A350 XWB cruise speed to Mach 0.85, as fast as the A380. The new generation engines, in the 75,000-95,000 lb thrust range, will power the A350 XWB family with exceptionally low noise and environmental impacts.

As an integral part of the Airbus family, the A350 XWB will build on the A380 interactive cockpit and systems. This will enable customers to introduce the A350 XWB smoothly and economically without the need for major retraining of pilots and crew ensuring airbus operational commonality.

Designed to have longer maintenance intervals with lower maintenance tasks and less maintenance man-hours, cash operating costs will be up to 10 per cent lower than competing 787 models and 20 per cent lower than current generation competitors.

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A350 XWB

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