The new airplane, like Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner, is made largely of composite materials. The two differ in how the composites are used, but both promise significant fuel savings and increased passenger comfort.
The A350 XWB has been coming together with components from suppliers throughout Europe for the past two years or so, and Airbus plans its first flight soon. With the big industry airshow taking place in just over a month, a first flight before the aerospace industry heads to Paris would all but steal the show.
Boeing will be there, of course, and is expected to make further announcements about its next new airplane, an updated version of the successful 777, currently being called the 777X. The company also is likely to celebrate the 787′s return to service after two battery meltdowns grounded all 50 Dreamliners worldwide in January. With all of those planes ready to fly again, Boeing announced today that it has resumed Dreamliner deliveries.