The Airbus A320, which looks like a “dolphin”, was placed in the Airbus Tianjin assembly plant workshop and it is not easy to see her. On May 6, a correspondent visited the Airbus Tianjin assembly line and saw that the first Tianjin produced Airbus A320, painted with red and white color at the request of the client, has entered the final testing stage. The next step is the forthcoming pilot flight.
“During the first two weeks of May our workers will test the fuel tank and engine to ensure the security of the airplane” said Shang Luguo, general manager of Airbus Tianjin Assembly Limited, “although we have completed a series of works such as the painting and engine installation, there are still a number of tests for this “white dolphin” to pass through before formally performing her maiden show.” According to the plan, Airbus Tianjin assembly plant will deliver the first airplane to Dragon Aviation Leasing Limited which will rent the plane to Sichuan Aviation Company for commercial operation.
According to the introduction, the Tianjin assembly plant will deliver as much as 11 Airbus planes to users by the end of this year. The plant will be able to assemble four planes per month and 48 planes annually by the end of 2011. At present, the second A319 plane has been painted and its engine will soon be installed. There are now five planes being assembled at the same time in the assembly plant.
The second runway at Binhai international airport specially built for the Airbus pilot flight has formally passed the test a few days ago, and was delivered to the Airbus assembly line for the pilot flight.
According to the technical staff of the Tianjin Airport’s second runway project, the Airbus A330 was used to conduct a pilot flight for this “runway test”. Airbus A330 belongs to the E type airplane and is much larger than Airbus A320. It has been proved therefore that the second runway has met every condition required as the special pilot flight runway for the assembly line of Airbus A320 series.
He also said, 1275 sets of lights have been installed at the second runway of Tianjin airport, and every different kind of light is under unified control and command of a “brain” which is the navigation light monitoring system. This runway has 1—5 brightness intelligent light adjustment grade, and can provide light navigation to airplanes at dusk or on a foggy day.
A320 series, including four types of A318, A319, A320 and A321, are twin engine medium to short range passenger planes with 150 seats developed by the European Airbus Industrial Company. All four types of Airbus have the same basic cabin arrangement. A320 is a truly innovated airplane which sets up a new standard for the single-aisle plane. As the relatively wide cabin makes the passengers feel more comfortable, A320 is more competitive in the market.
The Airbus Tianjin Assembly Plant is located in the Airport Industrial Park of Tianjin Binhai newly developed area and presently has 420 staff. Among them, there are 310 Chinese staff and 110 foreign staff. In addition, there are more than 30 staff attending a training course in Hamburg, Germany.