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Published On: Thu, Oct 19th, 2017

First Airbus A330neo lifted off from Toulouse on maiden flight

nsnbc : The first A330neo made by European aircraft manufacturer Airbus has lifted off from Toulouse on its maiden flight, commencing the test program for the new, re-engineered twin-engine jetliner.

Airbus A330neo_Toulouse_France_Oct 2017_Maiden flightThe first A330neo took off at about 09:57 CET on October 19, 2017, from the air framer’s headquarter in the French city of Toulouse. Powered by two Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines the A330-900 is the larger of the two planned A330neo family members.

As the aircraft climbed into the sky, there were scenes of jubilation from the gathered masses in Toulouse, France as onlookers cheered and secured the photos that would prove ‘they were there’. Amongst the gathered dignitaries was Eric Schulz, President Rolls-Royce Civil Aerospace, who said:

“This is a great moment for Airbus and Rolls-Royce and I am proud to see the latest member of the Trent family power this outstanding aircraft for the very first time.”

Following on from recent first flights of Trent XWB-97/Airbus A350-1000 and Trent 1000-TEN/Boeing 787-10, this means that Rolls-Royce has achieved an unprecedented milestone; powering three first flights in the past twelve months.

Airbus says three A330neos will be employed in the flight-test programme – two -900s and one -800 – with type certification due in mid-2018. The -900 has already logged orders for 206 aircraft.

Engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce notes that the Trent 7000 is not only 6dB quieter than the 700 model, it also features a 10% specific fuel consumption improvement thanks to its small, high pressure-ratio core and the latest, fully swept, wide-chord fan technology.

New component technology is employed elsewhere throughout the engine to enhance maintainability. Whether that’s the blisk combined blade and disc design in the compressors or the advanced, modulated turbine clearance control system, each technology serves to increase customer value.

The list of largest customers for the new airliner includes AirAsia which has committed to 66 jets. Iran Air has ordered 28. Air Lease has ordered 27 and the American Delta Air Lines has ordered 25. Other customers comprise TAP Portugal, reportedly set to be the first recipient next year, as well as Garuda Indonesia, Arkia Airlines and lessors BOC Aviation, CIT and Avolon. Hawaiian Airlines is opting for the smaller A330-800.

CH/L – nsnbc 19.10.2017

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