Middle East

Single passage long distance

The main impetus for the recovery of air travel in the pandemic was in the single aisle or “middle market” where Airbus already had a great advantage before the crisis.
Airbus has already completed the structural final assembly of the first tester of the A321XLR, and after 2023, the A321XLR will enter commercial service at an unprecedented ultra-long range of up to 4,700 nm, which is 15% longer than the A321LR. It is expected. Same fuel efficiency.
This added range will allow airlines to operate lower cost single-aisle aircraft on longer, less traveld routes. Many are currently only operational on larger, less efficient wide-body aircraft. This allows operators to open new global routes such as India to Europe and China to Australia. You can also expand Airbus’ single-passage jet portfolio non-stop with transatlantic flights between the European and American continents.
“Commonality” is the key to airlines. The A321XLR is designed to maximize overall commonality with the A321LR and other A320neo families. That is, flight attendants are certified to fly the aircraft without significant “conversation” training. However, there are some changes, such as a new permanent rear center tank (RCT) to increase fuel volume. Landing gear changes to increase maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) to 101 metric tons. And a wing trailing edge flap configuration optimized to maintain the same takeoff performance and engine thrust requirements as today’s A321neo. The new optimized RCT holds more fuel than some previous optional additional center tanks (ACTs) and saves cargo storage space. This frees up underfloor volume for additional cargo and baggage on long haul routes.
“For the A321 family, we have launched all versions of the head in Hamburg … and it is our intention to manufacture these aircraft on other sites as well,” said Michael Menking, A320 Program Head. Told. “We are currently planning to deliver the A321XLR from another single aisle FAL. Therefore, it is important that all teams can learn from their experience in Hamburg and bring this knowledge to other facilities. , We are also doing it at the A320 Family Airspace Cabin, which started in Hamburg. “
The first A321XLR will enter the next stage of installing the flight test equipment, followed by the installation of the CFM Leap engine. Engineers then test the jet engine, landing gear, door fairings, and other key components prior to the first test flight.
A321XLR has dozens of orders. Qantas Australia Limited is supporting Airbus’ new expansion range A321XLR with a contract covering 36 aircraft. International Airlines Group (IAG) has selected the A321XLR to ensure that it has ordered 14 aircraft and expanded its highly efficient single-isle fleet. Of these, eight are destined for Iberia and six are destined for Aer Lingus. IAG, the parent company of major airlines including British Airways, Rebel and Vueling, is one of Airbus’ largest customers, and the agreement will order 530 aircraft across the Group. Together with IAG’s airlines, it operates one of the world’s largest Airbus fleets with more than 400 aircraft.
Willy Walsh, former IAG Chief Executive Officer, said: “The A321XLR has the same unit price as a wide-body long-haul aircraft, enabling profitable network expansion, which strengthens both Dublin and Madrid hubs and connects new transatlantic routes and passengers. It provides additional flexibility to do so. These aircraft also offer cost-effectiveness and environmental benefits. “
The aircraft will allow Aer Lingus to launch new routes across the east coast of the United States and Canada. For Iberia, this is a new aircraft type that can operate new transatlantic destinations and increase frequency in major markets. JetBlue, along with American Airlines and United, will add the A321XLR.
Gerd Weber, Head of A320 Family Value Stream Management and FAL, points out: “The final assembly of the A321 XLR aircraft is not much different than other A321 aircraft. The main difference in XLR can be seen, for example, in the” pre-FAL “at the section assembly level where the RCT is installed. “
He adds: “This test aircraft is equipped with a partial cabin to leave space for all the flight test equipment needed. What is unique to this first A321XLR aircraft is that it performs, especially when it comes to flight test installations. There’s a lot of documentation work that needs to be done, which is very different from the serial process, which requires a special focus for all teams when closing the document and dealing with inconsistencies. . “
In June 2019, American Airlines ordered 50 Airbus A321XLR aircraft, creating new opportunities for the domestic and international markets. American Airlines will deploy transatlantic routes from Philadelphia and the arrival of Airbus A321XLR from cities such as Boston, Charlotte and Chicago.
The A321XLR is operated by the same crew operating other A320 family jets, and for airlines like United Airlines that have selected both A321neo and A321XLR, these jets are driven by the same engine.
JetBlue Airlines will add the A321XLR to its already large fleet of Airbus aircraft, increasing existing orders for the Airbus A220. JetBlue has signed a contract to convert 13 existing A321neo orders to the new A321XLR confirmed orders that Airbus unveiled at the Paris Air Show this week. JetBlue has also confirmed orders for an additional 10 A220-300 aircraft from existing options.
As a further push for cleaner and more sustainable flight, Airbus will begin delivering all aircraft with sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) from its U.S. manufacturing facility in Mobile, Alabama later this year. .. This initiative is a further step towards enabling Airbus’ commitment to carbon-neutral growth in the aviation sector.
Commercial aviation continues to account for about 2% to 3% of the world’s carbon emissions. To date, the industry has made the most progress in improving the efficiency of new aircraft. It’s 85% more efficient than the one that started service in the 1960s. Alternative fuels, especially sustainable aviation fuels (SAFs), have proven to help achieve the industry’s climate goals. Sources from SAF, such as algae, jatropha, and waste by-products, have been shown to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from aviation fuels by up to 80% over their entire life cycle. Almost a quarter of an airline’s operating costs are spent on fuel. It was 23.7% in 2019, up from 13% in 2001. This percentage can rise further as fuel prices rise. This alone provides a great incentive for the industry as a whole to focus on fuel economy.
* The author is an aviation analyst. Twitter handle: @AlexInAir

http://www.gulf-times.com/story/708260/Single-aisle-long-haul Single passage long distance

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