Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Airbus A330F gets blister for new nose gear

Airbus has been forced to modify the nose landing gear and forward fuselage of the newly launched A330-200F to enable the aircraft to better suit its new role as a cargo carrier. The redesign has required the incorporation of a blister fairing on the underside of the nose to accommodate the revised gear layout.
Airbus says that the modification was required to address the nose-down pitch that is a characteristic of the A330 (and the A340), to provide a level cabin floor during loading. "This makes it easier to load cargo pallets into the aircraft," says Airbus.
The A330/A340's distinctive nose-down pitch - which is greater than intended in the original design and only emerged when production of the aircraft began in the early 1990s - was a problem that Airbus had addressed on the first version of the A350.
The A330-200F has a payload of 64t and a range of 7,400km (4,000nm). It received its industrial launch last week and has secured commitments for 32 aircraft from three customers - lessors Intrepid Aviation Group and Guggenheim Aviation Partners and Indian cargo start-up Flyington Freighters. Deliveries will begin in late 2009.
22/01/07 Max Kingsley-Jones/Flight International