The A350-900 explore its longer range capability

By Bjorn Fehrm Subscription required. Introduction March 7, 2016, ©. Leeham Co: Airbus signed an MOU with Philippine Airlines for six A350-900 with options for six more at Singapore Air Show. The deal is significant because the airline’s President & COO, Jaime J. Bautista, said that the aircraft’s range played an important role in the selection process. The A350-900 was not designed as an especially long range aircraft, not more so than its main alternative, the Boeing 787-9. Yet in two recent selections, for Singapore Airlines and now Philippine Airlines, the range of the A350-900 has won the deal for Airbus. We explain why. Summary:
  • The Boeing 787-9 has a standard range which is equal to the A350-900, around 7,600nm measured under equal conditions.
  • Yet the A350-900 comes out on top when Airbus and Boeing are asked to offer extended range versions of these aircraft.
  • We use our proprietary aircraft model to go behind the scenes and investigate what makes the A350 more adapted to stretches into the space of ultra-long-range aircraft than Boeing’s 787-9.
 

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