Airbus, Saab

Airbus has extended Saab’s contract for the supply of ailerons used on A320-family aircraft throughout the life of the aircraft development programme.

Depending on the additional orders for the A320-family, Airbus is expected to increase the value of the contract, which is currently worth SEK701m ($103.08m) based on the order backlog for A320 family.

Since 2000, Saab has been supplying ailerons to Airbus and has introduced a new design and manufacturing processes in the development of composite ailerons aimed at reducing the product cost.

The Swedish aerospace company has also developed the new carbon-fibre-reinforced polymer (CFRP) monolithic technologies, which it claims have cut the parts number on the ailerons by over half.

Along with the ailerons, Saab also delivers mid and outer fixed leading edges for the Airbus’ A380 aircraft and the crew entrance door for its A400M military transport aircraft.

Offered with a choice of engines from the PW1100G PurePower from Pratt & Whitney and CFM International’s LEAP-X, A320 single-aisle jetliner family aircraft will deliver 15% fuel savings and a further flight distance of 500nm (950km).

The aircraft will also feature Airbus Sharklets, which are expected to cut down the aerodynamic drag by reducing the spiral-shaped vortices formed at the wingtips during flight, further increasing the pay load capacity by 500kg.

Airbus’s A320-family has an order backlog of 3,370 aircraft, while sales stood at 8,292 aircraft as of 31 December 2011 and had a total backlog for all aircraft of 4,437 for the period.

The aircraft maker said that it is currently manufacturing 40 aircraft per month and also has plans to increase its production capacity to 42 aircraft per month in Q4 of this year to cut the backlogs.


Image: The contract extension facilitates Saab to supply Aileron for the A320 aircraft throughout its development programme. Photo: Airbus.