Air Mauritius takes delivery of its first A350 XWB

Air Mauritius takes delivery of its first A350 XWB

The first A350 operator based in the Indian Ocean

Air Mauritius has taken delivery of its first Airbus A350-900 aircraft, opening a new chapter for the Indian Ocean carrier. The aircraft, leased from AerCap, was delivered during a ceremony held in Mauritius today.

The Mauritian airline based airline has chosen a very comfortable two class layout with a total of 326 seats comprising 28 in Business Class and 298 in Economy Class.

The A350-900 equipped with Air Mauritius’ latest cabin products including new seats, an all-new inflight entertainment system and inflight connectivity will offer passengers unparalleled levels of comfort and convenience.

This A350-900 is the first of six to be delivered to Air Mauritius. Four will be purchased directly from Airbus and two leased from AerCap. The carrier will deploy the aircraft on its expanding route network connecting Mauritius with Asia, Africa and Europe.

Air Mauritius already operates a fleet of 10 Airbus aircraft including six A340-300s, two A330-200s and two A319s on its regional and long haul services.

The A350 XWB features the latest aerodynamic design, carbon fibre fuselage and wings, plus new fuel-efficient Rolls-Royce engines. Together, these latest-generation technologies translate into unrivalled levels of operational efficiency, with a 25 per cent reduction in fuel burn and CO2 emissions, in addition to significantly lower maintenance costs.

The spacious, quiet, tastefully-appointed interior and mood lighting in the A350 XWB Airspace cabin contribute to superior levels of comfort and well-being, setting new standards in terms of flight experience for all passengers.

To date, Airbus has booked a total of 858 firm orders for the A350 XWB from 45 customers worldwide, making it one of the most successful widebody aircraft ever.

First A350XWB Air Mauritius 1

Air Mauritius’ first A350 XWB greeted with water canon salute

Source  :  Airbus Website

Airbus and Rolls-Royce partner to deliver integrated parts availability service for Cathay Pacific Airways’ A350 fleet

Partnership between Airbus and Rolls-Royce enabling Cathay Pacific to access engine and aircraft parts through the same process.

Airbus and Rolls-Royce have created a new integrated parts availability service for the Cathay Pacific Airways A350 fleet, which encompasses both airframe and engine Line-Replaceable-Unit (LRU) components. The service integrates the Airbus “Flight Hour Services” (FHS) and the Rolls-Royce TotalCare Availability service through a seamless operational interface.

Through this partnership between Airbus and Rolls-Royce, Cathay Pacific will be able to access both engine and aircraft parts through the same process to improve speed of response. Supported by both manufacturers, this innovative approach to managing airframe and engine parts provides a cost-effective and lean operational solution for the airline.

The airframe and engine parts will be hosted in the same warehouse in Hong Kong so that they can be made available locally when needed to secure the airline’s A350 operations. Airbus and Rolls-Royce believe that this approach will suit the needs of other customers and will seek further opportunities to develop seamless integrated services for the A350.

Airbus Website

Airbus maintains 50 A350 delivery target for 2016


Airbus has reaffirmed its forecast of delivering 50 of its A350-900s in calendar 2016, despite the “challenges” of delays to cabin equipment.

Through the first five months of calendar 2016, Airbus has delivered nine A350-900s to the likes of Cathay Pacific and Singapore Airlines, meaning it has to hand over a further 41 frames between now and the end of December to meet its target.

Efforts to get A350s out the door to its airline customers have been hampered by a shortage of cabin equipment from a number of suppliers.

However, Airbus executive vice president programmes Didier Evrard says the target can still be met, albeit not without a big effort from all involved in the program.

“We have challenges,” Evrard told reporters at company’s Innovation Days media briefings in Hamburg on Monday.

“The target remains absolutely achievable with a high level of effort from the A350 team.”

Evrard said production had improved in the past three months, with Airbus adding extra resources to the task.

“Fortunately, we are lucky enough that this year the A330 production is going down so this frees up additional up an additional station 20 that we can use for the A350,” Evrard said.

“We have also mobilised other facilities in Toulouse to cope with working parties.

“We are where we are. The fixes are in place.”

Meanwhile, Airbus chief operating officer Tom Williams said the proposed production rate of 60 A320 Family aircraft a month by 2019 was “enough for what we see today”.

“We’ve made studies to go beyond that but we are always making lots of studies and evaluations,” Williams said.

“I don’t think there is any real serious work going on and there is certainly no capital investment plans at this stage.”

“We are not spending too much time and energy thinking beyond that.”

“It is not one of our top priorities.”

Williams said the falling fuel price made it more challenging to sell A320s today when compared with the period when the A320neo was launched.

However, the low fuel prices could help support efforts to boost sales of the A380.

“The fuel price, as it is today, helps us in presenting the risk and reward ratio of the A380. That is one of the other things that we are going to push really hard,” Williams said.

“This is an aircraft that will still come back.”

Other efforts to promote A380 sales included improvements to the efficiency of the cabin (i.e. add more seats) and boosting the operational reliability of the aircraft through longer periods between maintenance checks. These efforts may allow airlines to operate a small fleet of A380s without causing big schedule disruptions when an aircraft is out.

Given the low demand for the world’s largest passenger aircraft, Airbus has installed a fourth final assembly line for its A320 Family into a building at its Hamburg-Finkenwerder facility that was originally slated for A380 production.

 Australian Aviation

Thai planning A350 services to Melbourne from July

The A350 on the ground in Sydney. (Jordan Chong)


Thai Airways looks set to the be second Airbus A350 operator to Australia with flights to Melbourne scheduled to feature the next generation widebody from July.

A report from the Airline Route website said the Star Alliance member opened reservations for its Bangkok-Melbourne service with the A350 over the weekend.

Currently, Thai flies twice daily between Melbourne and Bangkok with Boeing 777 aircraft – an afternoon and overnight flight from Melbourne and a morning and overnight offering from the Thai capital.

From July 1, the overnight service from Bangkok (TG465) and afternoon departure from Melbourne (TG466) will switch to the A350-900.

The transition to the A350-900 for the the morning flight from Bangkok (TG461) and red-eye flight from Melbourne (TG462) was scheduled to take place on August 1.

Indeed, a dummy booking on the Thai Airways website confirmed the aircraft equipment changes.

However, a Thai Airways representative in Australia cautioned that the schedule was still subject to change.

“The aircraft type has been loaded as per the planning schedule but it is not confirmed to operate as yet,” the airline said in an email on Monday.

Thai has 12 A350-900s on order, comprising four aircraft on direct order and eight to arrive via lease arrangements.

However, Flightglobal reported in January Thai planned to postpone some 14 widebody aircraft deliveries that had been scheduled for 2016-2018.

Airbus said in June 2015 Thai’s first A350 was expected to start final assembly in October 2015, with first delivery scheduled for mid-2016.

Apart from Melbourne, Thai also serves Sydney (747), Brisbane (787) and Perth (787) in Australia, as well as Auckland (777) in New Zealand.

Qatar Airways was the first to announce A350 services to Australia when the oneworld alliance member confirmed it would use the aircraft when it begins flights to Adelaide from May.


Australian Aviation

Qatar Airways’ 1st A350 accompanies its 4th A380 for delivery to Qatar

Departing Toulouse on its delivery flight to Qatar Airways’ base in Doha, is the airline’s first A350 XWB accompanied by its big sister A380 – the fourth for Qatar Airways which is also making its first journey home. With the delivery of this A350, the airline becomes the first carrier in the world to operate every family of Airbus’ modern airliner portfolio, comprising the A320, A330/A340, A350 and A380.

Airbus website

Airbus to reveal first A350 seats, cabin interiors next week

Airbus will unveil its first A350 cabin and seats next week as the aircraft manufacturer gears up for the late 2014 launch of its  next-generation jetliner.

The reveal will take place on Monday April 7th at Airbus’ new CabinDesign Centre in Hamburg, where airlines with orders for the A350 will choose the fitout for their planes from tip to tail.

This ‘one stop shop’ facility, similar to Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner Gallery in Seattle, includes ‘showrooms’ for a wide range of pre-approved seating from economy to first class, galleys, toilets and cabin equipmentplus cabin design studios.

Airbus’ order book for the A350 currently stands at some 38 airlines andleasing companies with 824 aircraft between them.

Qatar will be the A350’s worldwide launch customer, with its first plane due to debut before year’s end.

At an international Airbus press conference in June last year, A350program director Didier Evrard told Australian Business Traveller that “for the first customer (Qatar) the cabin is fully defined, we have modelled everything to a level that has never been achieved before.”

However, South America‘s LATAM Airline Group – comprising Chile’s LAN and Brazil’s TAM – has already afforded a sneak peak of their common cabin and seating designs for their shared Airbus A350 and Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner fleets to begin flying from 2015.

Arranged in a front-facing 2-2-2 layout, the Airbus A350 and Boeing 787-9 business class seats convert to fully lie-flat beds.

LATAM’s designs come from highly-regarded consulting firm Priestmangoode, which most recently crafted TAM’s slick Boeing 777 first class cabin.


The new A350 and 787-9 business class cabins clearly share some ofthat design DNA, with Priestmangoode saying the palette of natural tones was inspired by South America’s colours and textures.

The new economy seats are, well, pretty much what you’d expect.

Even before these designs took shape, a mock-up of the A350’s cabin – dubbed Cabin Zero – made a ‘virtual passenger flight’ in August last year with 129 passengers and a Cathay Pacific crew.

Source : Australian Business Traveller