Airbus has started production on a new wing for the A350-1000, considered to be the next generation of the new wide-body airliners in the A350-XWB family. The wing, 32 meters long and six meters wide, morphs in flight changing shape for maximum aerodynamic efficiency throughout the duration of the flight.
The wing is also the largest single part made from carbon composite material in civil aviation to date.
Seventy percent of the A350 XWB frame is made from advanced lightweight materials including 53% composites of titanium and advanced aluminium alloys. This makes the plane lighter with better fuel efficiency.
The A350-1000 wings are a modified design based on the A350-900 wings. The A350-1000 wing design changes support the longer fuselage of the jetliner with 90% of the parts modified to increase the jetliner’s efficiency at low speeds. To improve efficiency at higher speeds, the A350 XWB can deflect its wing flaps differentially which optimizes the wing profile and enables better load control.
With the new wing design (and Rolls Royce engine with 97,000 pounds of thrust on take off), the A350-1000 is capable of flying 450 kilometers farther (16 nautical miles) than the A350-900. That’s 14,800 kilometers in one go. This opens up long-haul routes for emerging markets such as Shanghai-Boston or Paris-Santiago for carriers.