Manufacturing http://www.timesaerospace.aero/ en Thu, 13 Jun 2024 11:49:04 +0100 ARC Aero Systems and Life Shield to invest in UK and Saudi aerospace http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/defence/arc-aero-systems-and-life-shield-to-invest-in-uk-and-saudi-aerospace

The deal between ARC Aero Systems and the Riyadh-headquartered defence and security manufacturing specialist Life Shield will open the way for upwards of £300m of investment into the two nations’ aerospace sectors. 

Bedfordshire-based ARC Aero Systems is in the advanced stages of developing a specially adapted hybrid-electric powered aircraft which it plans to bring to market by 2026. The company’s modified design of the Avian Pegasus, a tried and tested jump take-off gyroplane with specific features including vertical lift and landing, requires virtually no infrastructure in accessing remote communities and supporting emergency responders. This newly developed air taxi has approval from the US Federal Aviation Administration and can transport passengers for commercial purposes.

ARC is also developing a larger nine-seat Linx P9 compound rotorcraft and a C600, one of the largest civilian unmanned aerial vehicles, capable of carrying payloads of up to 100kg across long distances. 

Supported by Saudi Arabia’s National Industry Development Center, this new partnership will see both the Saudi Government and Life Shield make an equity investment in ARC Systems with the creation of a new company, based in the Middle East nation, called Life Shield Aerospace.

The newly formed company will bolster UK manufacturing with the pilot production of each of ARC’s three designs: Pegasus, P9 and C600. Life Shield Aerospace will then set up facilities for wider scale manufacturing of aircraft in Saudi Arabia for domestic use by the country’s Ministry of Air Transport and for worldwide export.

The SPA also includes the delivery of UK-based pilot training and it opens the door to a strategic academic collaboration with Cranfield University.

As well as providing a major boost to UK aviation and manufacturing, the global partnership marks another key step forward for ARC Aero Systems as it prepares to launch into a market estimated to grow from its current value of around $9bn to $45bn by 2030. 

ARC’s founder and CEO, Dr Seyed Mosheni, said: “We are incredibly excited and honoured to be part of this global joint venture with Life Shield. Not only does this support ARC in bringing its innovative solutions to market, it also provides a huge economic boost to UK aviation by promoting manufacturing, further R&D and academic collaboration within the sector.

Posted date
First paragraph

A UK company ARC Aero Systems has signed strategic partnership agreement (SPA) with a Saudi-based Life Shield.

Regions
Other topics
Rate
No votes yet
Top story
Off
Article main topic
Redirected
Off
Moved to features
Off
Lead image:
New batch
Off
Thu, 13 Jun 2024 10:49:04 +0000 eNethersole 68532 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Aviation INDIA 2024 kicks-off in Delhi http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/events/aviation-india-2024-kicks-off-in-delhi

The event was formally opened by Dr Vandana Aggarwal, former senior economic advisor, ministry of civil aviation for the Indian Government.

Conference Chair, Alan Peaford MBE, gave his opening speech by saying: “With a commercial aviation history going back some 113 years, India is hardly an emerging market, I would argue it is re-emerging.

"No wonder too, as many of the ingredients are right to stimulate a growth for the air transport and the aviation support business. The growth is attributed to increased per capita income levels; increase in urban migration numbers and a shift of customers from other modes of transport. Increased spend on consumables has seen eCommerce boom that feeds down to the air freight sector."

He added: "Indians will quite rightly point to the achievement of moving to a third place spot for domestic connectivity behind the United States and China. However, there are significant issues facing the business in this renaissance.  Is MRO up to scratch? Is the government creating the right environment to support this industry or are government charges and taxation restricting growth?

“There are some world class airports here, or in the pipeline, but away from the main metropolitan first-tier cities are there sufficient landing and parking places for the business aircraft industry.

“And to get business jets, do we have the right MRO support, landing strips and freedom to support?  Are the country’s own HNWI’s able to base an aircraft here with ease?

"Airlines, GA, maintenance and other aviation services all face a similar challenge.  Retaining staff and training new ones

“Poaching is prevalent, not just from domestic competitors but from the nearby Gulf States as well. At the same time, we are facing pressures brought about by global warming both for the impact on operations and the future regulatory restrictions."

Peaford concluded: "These issues, and others, will be addressed here on the platform over the next two days.”

Already the inaugural event has attracted over 500 registered delegates.

Mark Brown, managing director of Times Aerospace Events, said of the conference: “This may be the first of the Aviation India events but it won’t be the last.”

Posted date
First paragraph

Leaders from across the aviation sector are gathering in New Delhi for the inaugural Aviation India Summit and Exhibition, taking place June 12-13.

Regions
Other topics
Rate
No votes yet
Top story
On
Article main topic
Redirected
Off
Moved to features
Off
Lead image:
New batch
Off
Wed, 12 Jun 2024 07:48:17 +0000 eNethersole 68521 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
What we need is purchase power... http://www.timesaerospace.aero/features/manufacturing/what-we-need-is-purchase-power

What we need is purchase power...

Akie Chhabra

While Africa is one of the biggest markets for Embraer’s commercial arm, it still has challenges in the region with access to financing being a big problem.

Embraer has more than 285 aircraft with over 75 operators across Africa, making it one of its biggest markets.

“We have managed this as we have all aircraft types in Africa, all the way up from the Embraer EMB 120, which was our traditional twin-turboprop 30-passenger commuter airliner, up to the Embraer ERJ family, including the 135, 140 and 145, and the E1 and E2 family which are the most popular aircraft family in Africa as it's available more readily through lessors.

“There's an aftermarket for it from a lot of the E1s that essentially have been passed from North Africa and European operators,” said Akie Chhabra, Sub Saharan Africa and Southern Africa sales director for Embraer commercial aviation.

Nigerian carrier Air Peace currently operates the E2, where last year it commenced two non-stop weekly flights from Lagos to Johannesburg, lasting six hours.

However, Chhabra, explained that Embraer still encounters hurdles in Africa which he said is mainly due to lack of access to financing.

“As an OEM, we are finding access to financing a problem in the region, in respect to the fact that if you're looking to buy aircraft, or, lease aircraft, it can be quite heavy on your balance sheet.

“So, to preserve financial sustainability, a lot of the operators don't typically go immediately into the buying solution because you need access to funds for that.

“We need to open up source markets for them to be able to get these funds and for them to be able to actually invest in the acquisition of new aircraft as well as used aircraft.

“We need banks, exporting agencies, and credit agencies to be a little bit more used to the fact that they need to finance new aircraft in Africa.  And if we can find more and more financing partners, then I feel like we could bridge that gap that currently exists in some of the financing aspects.”

Chhabra said the second barrier to entry is the need to work with governments for certifications.

“The E2 is type-certified in certain countries where it can operate within Africa,” he explained. “But if we are looking to bring in the E2 aircraft to other countries we have to sit down with their governments, and their civil aviation authorities to type rate the aircraft, and that process can take anything between three months, six months or 12 all the way up to two years. So, that might delay the entry of an E2 aircraft into the continent.”

Chhabra added that aviation events, such as AFBAA and Aviation Africa are “great stepping-stones” to helping bridge that gap.

“Such events are a great incubator and good ecosystem to bring everyone together,” he said.

“We need to have these conversations and align customers with the banks in the lessons of these kinds of events, because it's very easy to facilitate an introduction between the two and get the conversation going.

“In fact, at Aviation African in Abuja last year, we actually did manage to close two transactions. Those were with Overland and with Air Peace for the E175. E1 aircraft variants, which is an aircraft that we still produce very actively for the North American markets.

“But we're also trying to grow the presence of the E175 in the African market now, because it's a really comfortable aircraft for this region market, and it replaces your traditional turboprops like the ATR72,” Chhabra concluded.

Marcelle (Ella) Nethersole

Marcelle (Ella) Nethersole

Ella is a news editor for digital news channels including Arabian Aerospace, African Aerospace and Times Aerospace TV.

Article Also Filed in:
Top story
Off
Redirected
Off
Wed, 05 Jun 2024 09:22:30 +0000 pIvanova 68490 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Future Aviation Forum opening day sees 47 deals worth $19b sealed http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/events/future-aviation-forum-opening-day-sees-47-deals-worth-19b-sealed

Deals included national air service agreements, aircraft orders, cargo and logistics, advanced air mobility, human capability, information technology, maintenance, repair and overhaul sector deals.

Saudia Airlines announcement to purchase 105 Airbus A320-Neo and A321-Neo aircraft set the stage alight on the first morning, as more than 5,000 attendees from 100 countries assembled in the Saudi capital.

The host, Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation signed Air Service Agreements with Mozambique and the Kingdom of Eswatini, with further agreements signed with Cambodia and Brunei Darussalam.

GACA also launched its inaugural State of Aviation report, finding the Saudi aviation sector made a $53 billion contribution to the Saudi economy and supported around 958,000 jobs across the country. The regulator also used the forum to release its General Aviation Roadmap to develop Saudi Arabia's business jet and private industry tenfold to $2 billion by 2030, with six dedicated general aviation airports and nine terminals – forecast to create 35,000 new jobs.

Minister of Transport and Logistics, Saleh Al Jasser said: "Saudi Arabia is enabling huge opportunities for the private sector and creating thousands of jobs for Saudi Arabia’s people. This Forum is bringing together the top leaders and brightest minds from the global aviation sector to collaborate and develop innovative solutions that will drive the sector into the future."

GACA President HE Abdulaziz Al-Duailej added: “The first day of the Future Aviation Forum has been a tremendous success, in terms of commercial deals, policy initiatives, and agreements to elevate global connectivity. Today’s announcements are a clear vote of confidence in the growth and investment opportunities being created across the Saudi aviation sector, and in Saudi Arabia’s global aviation leadership."

Posted date
First paragraph

On the first day of the Future Aviation Forum, taking place in Riyadh, 47 deals were confirmed with a value of $19 billion.

Regions
Other topics
Rate
No votes yet
Top story
On
Article main topic
Redirected
Off
Moved to features
Off
Lead image:
New batch
Off
Tue, 21 May 2024 14:51:17 +0000 eNethersole 68411 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Boost for Moroccan aerospace industry http://www.timesaerospace.aero/features/manufacturing/boost-for-moroccan-aerospace-industry

Boost for Moroccan aerospace industry

Picture: David Oliver

Regional security challenges are the main concern for Morocco’s armed forces and it obtained increased access to defence technology thanks to improving defence ties with France and the United States, and has received military training and equipment from both.

Marocco's relative stability has attracted western defence companies such as Airbus, Safran and Thales to establish aerospace manufacturing and servicing facilities in the country.

The aerospace industry sector in Morocco currently accounts for some 142 companies with 17,000 employees that have a turnover of around US$2 billion in exports. In 2020, Morocco’s aerospace industry ranked 36th globally and third in the Middle East and Africa region.

The Moroccan government has actively supported the development of the aerospace industry, implementing initiatives and offering incentives to attract foreign investors. The government has also invested in infrastructure development, including the creation of aerospace industry clusters like the Midparc Free Zone near Casablanca.

The Moroccan government has also placed an emphasis on developing the infrastructure and resources necessary to attract maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) companies to its Technopark in Casablanca and the Mohammed VI Tanger-Tech City being built by the China Communications Construction Company (CCCC).

In 2018 the French aircraft manufacturer Daher invested €15 million in its third plant in Morocco in the Tangier Free Zone, near the airport. It supports production for international aerospace programmes partnered by Daher and provide a platform to meet the needs of customers like Airbus Commercial Aircraft, Airbus Helicopters and Dassault.

In addition, some of the major MRO companies in Morocco have established training centers to enhance the skills of their workforce.

The Belgian Orizio Group, formerly the Blueberry Group, has been operating in Morocco since 2012 through its subsidiary Sabca Maroc which recently announced its investment of more than €17 million in the construction of a new 16,000 square metre facility which will house Pilatus, Airbus and Dassault aerostructure assembly lines in the Nouaceur area. It also participated, in co-operation with the Moroccan Air Force, to the modernisation of its fleet of Dassault Mirage F1C/E and Alpha Jet training aircraft. 

A joint venture, Maintenance Aero Maroc (MAM), was formed between Morocco, Lockheed Martin and the Orizio Group in 2022, to carry out MRO of Moroccan Air Force F-16C/Ds and C-130H Hercules. This project represents an additional development of the Orizio Group in the Kingdom of Morocco and the partnership includes the construction of a 15,000 square metre Maintenance, Repair, Overhaul and Upgrade (MRO&U) centre for military aircraft and helicopters at Benslimane Airport for the first time and supports the creation of up to 300 jobs.

A joint venture, Maintenance Aero Maroc (MAM), has been formed between Morocco, Lockheed Martin and the Orizio Group, to carry out MRO of Moroccan Air Force F-16C/Ds and C-130H Hercules.

In 2021 Morocco confirmed a US4.25 billion contract for 24 Boeing AH-64E Apache attack helicopters. Deliveries will begin in 2024 and Morocco has an option for 12 additional helicopters. The Moroccan Administration of National Defense and Boeing signed an industrial agreement in February 2023 as part of the extension of the acquisition programme of AH-64 Apache Helicopters. Boeing is already a partner of the MATIS Aerospace joint venture which produces aircraft wire bundles and harnesses in Morocco.

In June 2023 Pratt & Whitney Canada launch an affiliate, Pratt & Whitney Maroc and is building a new facility in Casablanca’s MidParc Free Zone that will cover an area of 130.000 square feet. According to It will be built according to state-of-the-art efficiency principles, both in terms of quality and cost, employ up to 200 staff and is due to open in 2025. The components factory would allow the company to increase its presence and strengthen its relationship with its customers and partners in the region. 

David Oliver

David Oliver

David has been a photojournalist for more than 40 years specialising in aerospace and defence.

Article Also Filed in:
Top story
Off
Redirected
Off
Fri, 03 May 2024 09:07:27 +0000 pIvanova 68319 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
IBA predicts 40 per cent increase in shop visits from 2024 to 2025 http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/maintenance/iba-predicts-40-per-cent-increase-in-shop-visits-from-2024-to-2025

The aviation market intelligence and advisory company analysis shows that engine leasing activity has grown significantly with operators now favouring lease extensions to secure lift. 

In its recent webinar on the engine market, experts from IBA, Mike Yeomans, Director – Valuations and Consulting, Kane Ray, Head of General Aviation and Aftermarket, and Jamie Davey, Manager – Engines and Parts, discussed and explained the trends.

As the industry continues to cope with supply chain issues and a shortage of spare parts and raw materials, IBA is holding firm to its view that there will be around 2,500 shop visits in 2024 for CFM56-5B, CFM56-7B, V2500-A5, CFM LEAP-1A, CFM LEAP-1B, and PW1100G engines (excluding additional shop visits driven by GTF engine issues). IBA predicts that this will be followed by a significant jump to 3,500 visits in 2025 – representing a 40 per cent increase.

However, between 2025 and 2027, the situation should come to a slight plateau at around 3,800 visits annually, before peaking at over 4,000 visits in 2028. With the continued staffing shortages in MRO facilities and OEMs facing supply chain issues and scarce shop visit slots, operators will continue to extend current engine leases to combat shop visit turnaround times and uncertainty in new generation engine reliability. 

While quality issues still plague the new generation narrowbody fleets, market values remain stable. Driven by shop visit events, the greatest market value movements can be seen in the current generation fleet. The CFM56-7B is seeing the highest market value change with an increase of around 20 per cent from 2023 to 2024. As a result of GTF groundings and growing shop visit activity, A320ceo engine values have also increased. 

As the engine market recovers, lease rates for current and new narrowbody engines have risen above pre-pandemic levels. Due to smaller supply and higher demand, V2500-A5 lease rates are slightly higher than CFM56-5B in 2024. However, CFM56-7B monthly lease rates have grown the most from about $75,000 in 2019 to $100,000 in 2024. In the new narrowbody engine leasing space, A320neo engine-related groundings have led to increases in monthly lease rates with the LEAP-1A26 climbing from a value of $110,000 in 2023 to above $125,000 in 2024.

Lease rate increases can also be attributed to the rise in engine and aircraft lease extensions as the latter contributes to reduction of spare engine supply in the market. As extensions help avoid transition costs, they have become the most cost-effective option for lessors.

While the freighter market remains strong - demand has peaked. However, ideal widebody freighter conversion candidates such as the A330-300 and 777-300ER are surging in passenger demand driven by delays to new aircraft deliveries. Despite the rising engine values for New Generation Widebody Engines, the relationship between market values and base values have steadied with changes at barely 5 per cent.

With a shortage of spare parts and long turnaround times in shops, turboprop engines have experienced heightened demand. IBA has recorded market value increases to the popular PW127M and PW150A variants, although the trend is applicable to other PW120 engine family variants. Whilst PW1500G values have been adjusted to align better with base value, GTF issues will still affect the fleet. For mature regional jet engines like the CF34-8E, market values are stable. The CF24-8E and CF34-10E engine markets have had indications of demand increases and lease rate rises as Embraer E190 family lease extensions grow and, most importantly, signal future demand for engines.  

Posted date
First paragraph

IBA has revealed that with rising engine lease rates and market values showing double-digit growth, the engine sector is now a “lessors’ market”.

Regions
Other topics
Rate
No votes yet
Top story
Off
Article main topic
Redirected
Off
Moved to features
Off
Lead image:
New batch
Off
Thu, 25 Apr 2024 21:13:14 +0000 eNethersole 68271 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Ethiopian Airlines chooses GE9X engines to power new Boeing 777X fleet http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/manufacturing/ethiopian-airlines-chooses-ge9x-engines-to-power-new-boeing-777x-fleet

This becomes the first GE9X customer in Africa.

“GE Aerospace is honoured to power Ethiopian Airlines’ new Boeing 777X fleet with our latest generation technology GE9X engine,” said Russell Stokes, President and CEO, Commercial Engines and Service, GE Aerospace. “Today’s order represents the next chapter in our successful partnership that has spanned decades and ensures Ethiopian Airlines continues to be at the forefront of commercial aviation.”

The 777X will be the world's largest and most efficient twin-engine jet, delivering 10% better fuel consumption, as well as the lowest emissions, and operating costs of any aircraft in its class.

Mesfin Tasew Group CEO added: "Ethiopian Airlines and GE Aerospace have a long partnership and today we are continuing that into the future with this order of GE9X engines to power our Boeing 777X fleet. This will ensure that Ethiopian Airlines fleet remains among the most efficient and modern in the world."

Posted date
First paragraph

GE Aerospace has reached agreement with Ethiopian Airlines for 16 GE9X engines to power the airline’s new fleet of Boeing 777X aircraft.

Regions
Other topics
Rate
No votes yet
Top story
On
Article main topic
Redirected
Off
Moved to features
Off
Lead image:
New batch
Off
Thu, 07 Mar 2024 09:18:11 +0000 eNethersole 68061 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Airbus and TotalEnergies sign strategic partnership for SAF http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/sustainability/airbus-and-totalenergies-sign-strategic-partnership-for-saf

In line with the objective of achieving net carbon neutrality of aviation by 2050, this partnership aims to contribute to the reduction of the sector's CO2 emissions, in which Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) play a key role. SAF supplied by TotalEnergies can reduce up to 90% CO2 emissions over their lifecycle compared to their fossil fuel equivalent.

The partnership will cover two main areas:

The supply by TotalEnergies of sustainable aviation fuels for more than half of Airbus’ needs in Europe.

A research and innovation programme aimed at developing 100% sustainable fuels tailored to the design of current and future aircraft. The impact of the composition of sustainable aviation fuels on the reduction of CO2 emissions and non-CO2 effects, such as contrails, will also be studied.

Airbus and TotalEnergies confirm their common ambition to promote SAF technology and to strengthen their collaboration to decarbonise the aviation industry:

TotalEnergies has been supplying the SAF used by Airbus for its aircraft deliveries in Toulouse since 2016.

TotalEnergies also supplied the fuel for several first SAF flights with Airbus aircraft:

In May 2021, the 1st long-haul flight using French-produced SAF with an A350 between Paris and Montreal;

In November 2021, the first flight of a H225 helicopter, from the "Super Puma" family, using 100% SAF;

In March 2023, the first A321neo flight with 100% SAF.

Patrick Pouyanné, chairman and chief executive officer of TotalEnergies, said: "The development of sustainable aviation fuels is at the heart of our Company's transition strategy. We are happy to form a strategic alliance with Airbus to play our part in meeting the challenge of aviation decarbonisation together. TotalEnergies has been working hard to respond to the sector’s new demand for a reduced carbon footprint. Our Company has set itself a target of 1.5 million tons of annual SAF production by 2030".

Guillaume Faury, Airbus CEO, said: "Accelerating the deployment of sustainable aviation fuels is essential if we are to meet our targets for reducing carbon emissions from aviation by 2030. This partnership between Airbus and TotalEnergies demonstrates the willingness of aerospace manufacturers and major energy producers and suppliers to work together to meet this challenge. We are determined to meet our decarbonisation targets and ensure that aviation can continue to play its valuable role for society in the future."

Posted date
First paragraph

Airbus and TotalEnergies have signed a strategic partnership to address the challenges of decarbonising aviation through sustainable aviation fuels.

Regions
Other topics
Rate
No votes yet
Top story
Off
Article main topic
Redirected
Off
Moved to features
Off
Lead image:
New batch
Off
Mon, 26 Feb 2024 10:29:00 +0000 eNethersole 68007 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Turkish Airlines to become largest operator of Trent XWB engines http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/manufacturing/turkish-airlines-to-become-largest-operator-of-trent-xwb-engines

This will make Turkish Airlines the world’s largest operator of Trent XWB engines.

The Trent XWB-84 powered A350-900s, Trent XWB-97 powered A350-1000s and Trent XWB-97 powered A350F will be delivered between 2025 and 2033. The engines’ health and maintenance will be covered by the Rolls-Royce comprehensive TotalCare service.

Flying to more than 340 destinations in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas, Turkish Airlines has grown from a passenger base of 10 million in 2003 to more than 82 million in the last twelve months. 

This substantial order will complement the airline’s existing fleet, adding to the 40 Rolls-Royce Trent XWB-84 A350-900s already in service and on order, and 26 Trent 700 powered A330s.

Tufan Erginbilgic, CEO, Rolls-Royce plc, said: “Today’s announcement marks an exciting and truly historic day for Rolls-Royce. It is proof that the actions we are taking to transform Rolls-Royce into a high performing and competitive company underpinned by profitable growth are working.

“The Trent XWB is the perfect engine platform to support Turkish Airlines as it continues to grow. This order will make Turkish Airlines the largest Trent XWB operator in the world, and I would like to thank them for putting their trust in Rolls-Royce.

“Türkiye is a strategically important market for us, and it is imperative to develop long-term partnerships with the airline and other important Turkish stakeholders.

“We look forward to working with Turkish Airlines as they continue to connect their passengers across global communities and cultures.”

Ahmet Bolat, Chairman of the Board and the Executive Committee, Turkish Airlines, added: "This landmark order is more than an expansion; it's a testament to our dedication to innovation, operational excellence, and a sustainable future. The addition of these advanced Airbus aircraft to our fleet will not only enhance our operational capabilities but also significantly contribute to our environmental goals. With the unparalleled location of our home base located in Istanbul, which straddles continents, we will continue our mission of bridging people from all over the world and these new aircraft will play a crucial role for that goal in our journey towards an even brighter future."

Posted date
First paragraph

Rolls-Royce has announced Turkish Airlines will order 100 Trent XWB-84 engines and 40 Rolls-Royce Trent XWB-97 engines.

Regions
Other topics
Rate
No votes yet
Top story
Off
Article main topic
Redirected
Off
Moved to features
Off
Lead image:
New batch
Off
Mon, 18 Dec 2023 14:38:15 +0000 eNethersole 67637 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Africa ready to capitalise on the A220 comfort zone http://www.timesaerospace.aero/features/manufacturing/africa-ready-to-capitalise-on-the-a220-comfort-zone

Africa ready to capitalise on the A220 comfort zone

Francisco Lopez

The Airbus A220 – previously known as the Bombardier CSeries – is now making an impact and has African airlines in its sights.

Airbus Canada Limited Partnership is owned by Airbus, and its partner Investissement Québec (acting for the government of Québec). It employs approximately 3,000 staff at its headquarters and manufacturing facilities in Mirabel with a second manufacturing facility serving US customers in Mobile, Alabama.

With a total of three production lines Airbus is currently producing six A220s every month. By the middle of the decade it anticipates boosting monthly production to 14.   

With two variants -100 and -300 the A220 aircraft is designed to serve the 100-150-seat market segment.

Francisco Lopez, head of A220 customer engineering, says the A220 is the most fuel-efficient single-aisle jetliner. “It uses 25% less fuel than previous generations and has 254% lower carbon emissions,” he said. “Sustainability is at the heart of the A220 aircraft design.”

The A220 programme was created in 2018 after Airbus acquired the CSeries programme from Bombardier. Airbus is now celebrating the fifth anniversary of the A220 programme as the aircraft is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its first flight (C Series) this Autumn.

Air Senegal, Air Tanzania, Egypt Air and Nigerian Ibom Air are operating the A220 aircraft in Africa. “Because of the efficiency and performance, the aircraft attracted interest from around the world. Our customers are diversified – lessors, startups, low-cost and legacy airlines,” Lopez said.    

The A220 programme has more than 100 suppliers around the world. From Africa, Morocco supplies part of the fuselage, while China supplies the main fuselage. Belfast supplies the composite wings, while the landing gears are imported from Germany. Leonardo of Italy supplies the aircraft’s vertical and horizontal stabilisers, while the cockpit is manufactured in Mirabel.        

According to Lopez, the A220 has the most efficient aerodynamics due to its optimised cross section and optimised aerodynamics of the nose, wing and tail.

It is powered by the Pratt & Whitney PW1500 geared turbofan (GTF) engine, which was originally designed for the A220 and adopted for the A320 NEO family.

According to Lopez, extensive use of composite materials and advanced metal alloys allows for a lightweight design.

The fly-by-wire system is developed by Parker Aerospace, while the avionics are supplied by Collins Aerospace. Panasonic delivers the cabin management system.

“With a five-abreast cross section, the A220 offers widebody comfort in a single-aisle aircraft,” Lopez remarked. “In terms of comfort, A220 has large windows that are 28 by 40.6cm (11 by 16 inches) wide – equivalent to the windows of the Boeing B777 aircraft.

The A220 variants -100 and -300 have more than 99% parts commonality. “In terms of flight crew training, pilots can switch from one aircraft to another and fly the same day. The main difference in size is the -300 has a 3.7-metre longer fuselage. The commonality gives airlines great flexibility in their operations,” Lopez said.

With a range of 3,450nm in the 100-150 seat market segment, the A220 is relevant to the African market. Lopez said an African airline operating from Addis Ababa could cover most of the destinations in Africa and the Middle East. “From Johannesburg, you can cover most of the destinations in Africa. African and other airlines can tap into this huge potential,” Lopez said.

Several African carriers including Ethiopian Airlines are evaluating the A220.

Pratt & Whitney said current time on wing for GTF engines varies significantly depending on mission and operating environment, with operators in hotter, sandier environments experiencing reduced intervals between maintenance visits.

Kaleyesus Bekele

Kaleyesus Bekele

Based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Kaleyesus has been serving African Aerospace magazine as correspondent since 2013.

Article Also Filed in:
Top story
Off
Redirected
Off
Fri, 15 Dec 2023 10:22:02 +0000 pIvanova 67624 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero