Free Newsletters - Space News - Defense Alert - Environment Report - Energy Monitor
. 24/7 Space News .




AEROSPACE
China's home-grown plane rises to the challenge
by Staff Writers
Shanghai (AFP) Nov 18, 2012


China's home-grown passenger plane was only a model at the country's premier airshow, but a growing number of orders show Beijing's drive to challenge the dominance of Boeing and Airbus.

State-backed Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC) said it won 50 orders for the planned 168-seat C919 plane at the Zhuhai airshow, which ends on Sunday, bringing the total to 380.

China's rapid economic growth is creating massive demand for planes as growing incomes boost air travel, with US aviation giant Boeing estimating the country will need 5,260 commercial jets over the next 20 years.

But China wants a piece of that multi-billion dollar market as it tries to develop its own technology and then look overseas for sales.

The plane is a symbol of national pride which would compete with Boeing's 737 and the A320 of European consortium Airbus, but catching up might take at least a decade, industry officials and analysts said.

The challenges are formidable: China not only needs to get the plane in the air -- targeted for 2014 -- but ramp up production and build a market by convincing buyers of its safety and reliability, they said.

"The goal of the Chinese is to be in a few years at the same level as different parties around the world -- of course Airbus and Boeing," said David Lopez Grange, general director of Spanish aeronautics firm Aritex.

"Maybe it's not a long time -- 10 years. China will be a very important player in the world in a few years," he told AFP.

Aritex, a top-tier supplier for Airbus, has just won a contract to assemble the central wing box -- which secures the wing in the body -- of China's C919.

Although COMAC says the plane will have "Chinese characteristics", it is relying on foreign technology for key parts of the project, including the engines, to be supplied by French-American venture CFM International.

"The project provides a chance for China to obtain certain technology through cooperation with foreign countries, so as to advance its own aviation manufacturing," an aviation analyst at a Chinese securities firm said.

"The aircraft may have a share of the market, but it may take years before it can compete against the two foreign producers (Boeing and Airbus)," the analyst, who declined to be named, told AFP.

China's aviation dreams date back to the 1970s, when leader Mao Zedong's wife Jiang Qing backed a project to build China's own plane. Only three Y-10s were ever built and their heavy weight made them impractical.

As COMAC develops the C919, it is also building a smaller regional jet which seats 78 to 90 passengers, but that project is years behind schedule.

The ARJ21 regional jet made a test flight in 2008 but the deadline to deliver planes to customers a year after has fallen by the wayside.

COMAC, which took over the project from its shareholder Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), said earlier this month that it would assemble 50 regional jets annually by 2014. It has four prototypes now.

The company is targeting annual production of 150 of the larger C919 planes by 2020.

"Increasing orders show that both domestic and foreign consumers have given the C919 their endorsement," COMAC general manager He Dongfeng told state media.

But some potential buyers are waiting, including Chinese budget carrier Spring Airlines, which is a devoted customer of the Airbus A320.

"If the plane's performance is mature and the market welcomes it, then we can consider buying it," Spring spokesman Zhang Wuan told AFP.

The latest orders were booked by two Chinese carriers: Joy Air, partly owned by AVIC which is backing the project, and two-year old Hebei Airlines.

A foreign company, aircraft leaser GE Capital Aviation Services, also ordered 10, Chinese media reported. Another unit of GE in the aviation sector has said it will supply engines and avionics to the plane through ventures.

.


Related Links
Aerospace News at SpaceMart.com






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





AEROSPACE
Brazil airline opts for Rockwell Collins
San Jose Dos Campos, Brazil (UPI) Nov 14, 2012
Latin America's largest low-cost airline GOL has opted for Rockwell Collins' advanced avionics for its brand-new fleet of 20 Boeing 737NG aircraft. Neither side discussed the deal's financial details as they made the announcement. The Rockwell Collins win is an indication that despite Brazil's great strides in developing its own aviation and defense industries, U.S. manufacturers ... read more


AEROSPACE
China's Chang'e-3 to land on moon next year

Moon crater yields impact clues

Study: Moon basin formed by giant impact

NASA's LADEE Spacecraft Gets Final Science Instrument Installed

AEROSPACE
NASA Rover Providing New Weather and Radiation Data About Mars

CU LASP package ready for MAVEN integration bound for Mars

Instrument Delivered for NASA's Upcoming Mars Mission

Melt water on Mars could sustain life

AEROSPACE
NASA Selects Information Technology Flight Operations Support Contract

SciTechTalk: All work and no play?

Get some bed rest - all 21 days of it

Latest China military hardware displayed at airshow

AEROSPACE
Mr Xi in Space

China plans manned space launch in 2013: state media

China to launch manned spacecraft

Tiangong 1 Parked And Waiting As Shenzhou 10 Mission Prep Continues

AEROSPACE
Space station command changes

Russia restores space contact after cable rupture

Russia loses contact with satellites, space station

Cut in Russian link to space station not serious: NASA

AEROSPACE
Arianespace's fourth Spaceport mission with Soyuz ready for fueling

Ariane 5's sixth launch of 2012

Ariane 5 is poised for Arianespace's launch with the EUTELSAT 21B and Star One C3 satellites

Ariane 5 orbits EUTELSAT 21B and Star One C3 satellites

AEROSPACE
Lowell astronomer, collaborators point the way for exoplanet search

A Reborn Planetary Nebula

Lost in Space: Rogue Planet Spotted?

Lowell Astronomer, Collaborators Point The Way For Exoplanet Search

AEROSPACE
Titan is also a green powerhouse

Google's Android is eating Apple's lunch

AVX Introduces SMD Tantalum Chip Capacitors For Aerospace Applications

Google's Android is eating Apple's lunch




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement