The Airbus A350 XWB and the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner are currently perhaps the two most advanced passenger jets in the world.
They are both at the Paris Air Show, and they both carry GE technologies and materials. The GEnx engines that power the Dreamliner, for example, have fan blades and fan cases engineered from carbon fiber composites. The fixed trailing edge on the Airbus A350 XWB is made from a similar advanced material . In fact, more than a half of that jet’s body is made from composites.
“GE’s contribution to the structure of the A350 XWB plays a major role in the efficiency of the A350 wing fixed trailing edge,” says Mike Bausor, Airbus marketing director for the A350 XWB plane.“The [fixed trailing edge] is an integral part of the wing structure. Built predominantly from composite material, it is one of the most complex, highly loaded parts of the wing that requires utmost precision and mastery in the assembly process, as well as in the design and stress calculation.”
The fixed trailing edge makes the back part of the wing of the Airbus A350 XWB. Image credit: GE Reports/Adam Senatori.
Bausor says that composites are lighter than traditional aluminun alloys and also also extremely resistant. “But carbon fibre composite has other very valuable properties that bring major benefits to airlines,” he says. “This material does not corrode or fatigue. The maintenance tasks related to corrosion or fatigue on the airframe are therefore greatly reduced. The heavy maintenance interval can be extended to 12 years, versus 6 years for conventional airframes, significantly reducing maintenance cost and ensuring continued revenue generation for a much longer period.”
Both planes have been making afternoon flyovers at Paris Air Show this week. Photographer Adam Senatori captured some of the best moments.
Adam Senatori captured the A350 XWB (top) and the bird-like Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner (above) during flyovers at the Paris Air Show this week. Both planes feature GE materials and technologies. Image credits: GE Reports/Adam Senatori
The A350 XWB over Paris. Image credit: GE Reports/Adam Senatori
The Dreamliner in black & white. Image credit: GE Reports/Adam Senatori