Spain has approved loans worth up to $520 million for subcontractors working on the Airbus A350 XWB twin-aisle twinjet or on its Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engine. The loans are separate from any other financial support that Spain provides for the overall program.
Goodrich Corp. has signed a research agreement with Rolls-Royce to develop the new fuel nozzles for “lean burn” combustion technology systems for gas turbine engines, Goodrich announced today. Rolls-Royce has also chosen Goodrich to supply the fuel nozzles for the new Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engine for the Airbus A350XWB widebody.
Sky Aircraft, based in Chambley in France’s Lorraine region, is part of GECI International, which also includes Reims Aviation, maker of the F406 twin turboprop. GECI is also a supplier to manufacturers Airbus on the A380 and A350 XWB programs and Dassault on the 7X program. The SK-105 Skylander is a high-wing twin turboprop powered by two Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-65B engines.
Airbus confirmed to AIN today that it will build just 13 A380s this year, rather than the previously planned 14.
At face value, Europe’s EADS group appeared to come off slightly worse than its U.S. rival Boeing from financial results announced in late July. EADS reported a 23-percent drop in operating profits for the first half of this year, compared with a 22-percent decline at Boeing over the same period.
Boeing Commercial Airplanes has begun to study the possibility of fitting the 777 with a redesigned wing in an effort to more effectively compete against the Airbus A350XWB-1000. Although BCA chief executive Scott Carson said at this month’s Paris Air Show that “nothing is decided,” a re-winged 777 could offer an alternative to the still un-launched 787-10, the so-called double stretch of the baseline 787-8.
German aerostructures specialist Premium Aerotec (Hall 1 Stand E197) has signed a contract with Airbus to provide the fuselage structure for the European manufacturer’s new A350XWB. The structures are for the floor and aft pressure bulkhead, adding to existing work it has to build forward section elements and aft side shells. The work is worth a total of approximately $500 million, said the EADS subsidiary.
Calling Boeing’s 787 “probably the most subsidized airplane ever,” Airbus CEO Thomas Enders nevertheless feels comfortable with the €11 billion ($15 billion) that, on his own admission, European governments have committed to launching the A350XWB.
AirAsiaX has placed firm orders for 10 Airbus A350-900 airliners. The Malaysian carrier will use the new widebodys to connect its Asian hub in Kuala Lumpur with cities in Europe and Australia. The value of the deal was not confirmed but at list prices it would be approximately $2.4 billion.
Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker is threatening to pull the plug on a contract for up to 60 Boeing 787s due to what appear to be serious objections to the way the long-delayed program is being handled.