Airbus A321LR: More Range, Less Fuel

sustainable aviation

Airbus’ newest single aisle offering transatlantic flight capability

Hamburg, Finkenwerder, January 31, 2018: Airbus’ first A321LR (Long Range) has accomplished its maiden flight following a mission lasting 2 hours and 36 minutes. The aircraft powered by CFM International LEAP-1A engines is now set to undergo a nearly 100 hour flight test program, including transatlantic missions, for EASA and FAA Type Certification in the second quarter this year. Entry into service is targeted for the fourth quarter 2018.

The aircraft’s crew comprised: Experimental Test Pilots Yann Beaufils and Peter Lofts as well as Flight Test Engineers Frank Hohmeister, Jim Fawcett, Cedric Favrichon and Cabin Specialist Alexander Gentzsch. During the flight, the crew tested the aircraft’s flight controls, engines and main systems including flight envelope protections, both at high and low speed.

Klaus Roewe, Head of A320 Program stated: “Thanks to its outstanding performance and unbeatable efficiency, the A321LR will allow our customers to perform flights of up to 4,000nm (7,400 km), allowing them to open new routes – for example transatlantic – and conquer new markets.”

The A321LR features a new door configuration, enabling its operators to accommodate up to 240 passengers in Airbus’ widest Single Aisle fuselage in the sky. The new ‘Airspace by Airbus cabin’ available on the A320 Family additionally enhances the passengers’ unrivalled travel experience. With further options, combining an increased Maximum Take Off Weight (MTOW) of 97 tons and a third Additional Centre Fuel Tank (ACT), the aircraft’s range is allowing airlines to tap into new market opportunities.

Incorporating the latest engines, aerodynamic advances, and cabin innovations, the A321neo offers a significant reduction in fuel consumption of 20 percent by 2020. With more than 1900 orders received from over 50 customers, to date the A321neo has captured a solid 80 percent market share, making it the true aircraft of choice in the Middle of the Market.

sustainable aviation

Source: Airbus

NASA: Prototype Air Traffic Tool Ready for Airborne Workout

sustainable aviation

New sustainable ‘Flight Deck Interval Management’ system to save fuel, flight time and money

 

Seattle, February 2, 2017: In a series of flights called Air Traffic Management Technology Demonstration-1  (ATD-1), NASA’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate is testing airborne flight deck interval management software with the help of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and leading aviation partners.

The month-long campaign involves three planes: a Boeing 757 and a business jet – either a Dassault Falcon 900 or an Embraer 170 – supplied by Honeywell, and a Boeing 737 provided by United Airlines. The aircraft are based at King County International and Seattle-Tacoma International Airports in Seattle, but the flight test will take place about 120 miles east, over Grant County International Airport.

After years of research and laboratory work, a full airborne demonstration of new technology and procedures aimed at improving air traffic flow into busy airports is on schedule to take off this month over Washington State.

The system is called Flight Deck Interval Management, or FIM, and its key benefit is that it will help air traffic controllers and pilots more precisely manage and safely shorten the time, or interval, between airplanes landing on a runway.

“All the pilots that are going to be flying the FIM operations have gone through the training modules and simulations. The equipment is all set and we’re ready to go,” said Sheri Brown, ATD-1 project manager at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Virginia.

The research is intended to help airplanes spend less time in the air, save money on fuel, and reduce engine emissions – all the while improving schedule efficiency to help passengers arrive at their destination on time and avoid missing connecting flights.

FIM is the final piece of a suite of aircraft arrival technology developed under the ATD-1-program. Two other NASA-developed technologies from ATD-1 – Traffic Management Advisor with Terminal Metering and Controller Managed Spacing – together were already  delivered to the FAA in 2014 as a single tool known as Terminal Sequencing and Spacing (TSAS).

Information provided to air traffic controllers from TSAS will be combined with NASA-developed software that is at the heart of FIM. The result is guidance that directs pilots to fly at a certain speed and maintain a more precise spacing with an aircraft flying ahead of them all the way down to the runway.

“It’s a very simple ‘follow the leader’ operation that is easy to execute by the flight crew,” Sheri Brown said. During the course of the flight tests, researchers hope to complete some 80 runs involving three major flight scenarios:

  • flying at a cruise altitude of 35,000 feet,
  • descending from cruise altitude all the way down to the airport, and
  • making a final approach beginning about 15 minutes before touchdown.

The plan is to fly about five-and-a-half hours each weekday, testing up to five test scenarios during each daily sortie. The Honeywell 757 and United 737 will be equipped with the FIM system in its cockpits, where its pilots will “follow the leader” during test runs behind the Honeywell business jet, which will provide its speed and position information to the other aircraft.

sustainable aviation

(l to r) Jason McMahon, Helmuth Eggeling and Scott Nyberg — lead test pilots from Honeywell Aerospace’s Flight Ops engineering organization – take part in final checkouts of the ATD-1 technologies and flight plans.
Credits: NASA / David C. Bowman

If all goes well with the demonstration, the entire FIM system – including software and hardware – will be turned over to the FAA by the fall of 2017, where the FAA will continue to evaluate and test it before making a decision to certify its use.

Source: NASA Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate / Jim Banke, Lillian Gipson

Pratt & Whitney’s GTF Engines Power HK Express Milestone Flight

East Hartford, Connecticut, December 21, 2016: Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower Geared Turbofan engines have powered HK Express‘ first Airbus A320neo revenue service flight. The HK Express flight flew from Hong Kong to Osaka, Japan, on December 12. 

“Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower engines have performed superbly throughout the introduction of our first A320neo into service,” said Andrew Cowen, CEO of HK Express. “We are confident that this highly efficient aircraft will support the growth of our business, benefiting our passengers and enhancing our sustainability.”

“The revolutionary technology of the PurePower GTF engine is transforming aviation by helping airlines to deliver lower costs and more sustainable operations,” said Rick Deurloo, senior vice president, Commercial Engine Sales, Marketing and Customer Service.

The Pratt & Whitney PurePower family has more than 80 customers, for both announced and unannounced firm and option orders, from more than 30 countries. In-service performance of the PurePower engine has demonstrated its ability to reduce fuel burn by 16 percent, regulated emissions by 50 percent and noise foot print by 75 percent, compared to 737-800 engines.

Hong Kong Express

Source: Pratt & Whitney

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