Two weeks ago, Airbus A350 marketing director Mike Bausor visited us at Finnair headquarters and told us about our new Airbus A350 XWB aircraft. In addition to improved passenger comfort and cutting-edge design, the A350 introduces operational efficiency based on the latest technology, which translates into improved environmental performance.
The airframe is a mixture of carbon-fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP) and titanium, both lighter than their predecessors (aluminum and steel, respectively). The materials are more durable, which means lower maintenance requirements due to less corrosion/fatigue-related tasks. The right materials in the right place ensure better operational efficiency. This is also the case in the cockpit where new displays bring simplicity and efficiency with much lower maintenance costs.
Advanced design is used for the wings, which will utilize automated, adaptive wing-shape technology during the entire flight – similar to how birds constantly adapt their wings when flying. Finally, the A350 will be equipped with Trent XWB engines that are designed for fuel efficiency. According to Rolls-Royce, these are the most efficient aero-engines flying today.
With all these advanced features – lightweight material airframe, latest generation engines, state-of-the-art aerodynamics, and highly integrated systems – the A350 XWB will operate with 25 percent less fuel burn and, therefore, produce 25 percent less carbon dioxide emissions.
Finnair’s first A350 will start flying the Shanghai route late October this year. After the introduction, we should start seeing improved results in our emission reporting for each shipment carried by the aircraft.
Before the introduction on long-haul routes, there will be a series of familiarization flights operated in Europe, so stay tuned – a Finnair A350 might soon make an appearance in an airfield near you!
Manager Marketing&Sustainability, Finland