NEW KID OFF THE BLOCKS

As Cathay Pacific welcomes its first Airbus A350-1000, PHIL HEARD finds out what benefits the bigger, more efficient aircraft brings to the fleet隨著國泰航空迎來旗下首架空中巴士A350-1000,Phil Heard探討這架體積更大、效能更高的客機為機隊帶來的好處

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Last month, Cathay Pacific received its first Airbus A3501000 – a bigger and better version of its smaller sister aircraft, the A350-900.

The high-spec A350, a quieter and more fuel-efficient aircraft, has been part of Cathay Pacific’s fleet since 2016, and has since been rolled out across the airline’s route network.

As you’d expect from two members of the same family, the two aircraft share many characteristics, including looks, with their distinctive ‘raccoon’ eyes. In fact, up to 90 per cent of all the part numbers in the -900 are replicated in the -1000.

That said, the difference between the two is more than a simple seven-metre stretch. Some of the parts that aren’t shared are very significant. These include new Rolls-Royce engines that offer more thrust to deal with a 28-tonne heavier maximum take-off weight. These XWB-97 engines turn faster and run hotter than any others in service. To reduce the stress on airport paving, the rear undercarriage now has extra wheels – like the Boeing 777 – to spread the extra weight.

Inside, some differences will be noticeable to passengers. The additional fuselage length is at the front of the aircraft, which means that the Business Class cabin is now integrated between the two forward sets of doors rather

than split by them. In the Economy Class cabins there are new seats from a new supplier.

The -1000, too, comes with three cabin classes, so those routes that require a First Class cabin will continue to be served by four- class 777s, until these are replaced by the new Boeing 777-9 from the early 2020s.

The -1000 will add capacity to some of the ‘longer and thinner’ routes that the -900 has pioneered, such as the new European destinations. The -1000 will also be used on new routes such as Washington DC, which launches in September.

‘ The -1000 is there to give better operating economics on those routes

在上個月,國泰接收旗下首架空中巴士A350-1000,這種型號的客機比起她的姊妹A350-900體積更大性、 能更優秀。高規格的A350客機更安而且節省燃油,自2016年起加入國泰航空,機隊 其後逐步在公司的整個航線網絡內應用。就像兩個來自同一個家族的成員一樣,這兩款客機擁有許多共通特徵, 括客機的外形和形如「浣熊眼睛」的駕駛艙。事實上, -1000型客機有九成的組件與-900型是相同的。話雖如此, -900型和-1000型客機之間的,差別 並不止於後者的機身比前者長七米。者兩 之間其實亦有多處頗為重要的分別, 括全新勞斯萊斯引擎,可提供更大推力以應付增加了28噸的最大起飛重量。這

些XWB- 97引擎比起任何其他現役款式都運轉得更快而且更。熱 為減輕客機對跑道造成的,負荷 機尾起落架現時採用波與 音777客機同樣的設計,配備額外輪胎,將額外的重量分散。乘客亦能可 會注意到兩款客機內部的分別。機身增的加 長度位於客機前端,示表商務客艙現時不再被兩組前置機門分隔,而是整合為一個空,間 而經濟客艙亦配備由新供應商提供的座椅。-1000型客機同樣設有三個客艙級,別因此那些對頭等客艙需求大的航線將繼續由四設有 個客艙級別的波音777客機提供服務,直至於2020年代初被全新波音777-9型客機取代為止。-1000型客機將為由- 900型開發的部分「路程較長而客量較少」的提航線 升運

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