Tue, 29 Jan 2019

EASA Certifies A330neo for ETOPS Beyond 180 Minutes

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has approved the Airbus A330-900 for ETOPS (Extended-range Twin engine aircraft Operations) “beyond 180 minutes” diversion time.

The approval, which includes ETOPS 180 min. capability in the aircraft’s basic specification, now also includes the option for “ETOPS 285 min.” This extends the potential air diversion distance to around 2,000nm. The U.S. FAA’s respective ETOPS certification is expected soon.

The A330-900 received its Type Certification following a flight campaign that involved around 1,400 flight test hours performed in less than one year, which was followed by approval for ETOPS (Extended-range Twin engine aircraft Operations) “beyond 180 minutes” diversion time. Click to enlarge.

A330neo operators which choose the ETOPS 285 min. option will be able to serve new direct ‘non-limiting’ routings. Meanwhile, operators flying on existing routes (currently flown with up to 180-minute diversion time) will be able to traverse a straighter, quicker and more fuel efficient path, and also have access to more – and possibly better equipped – en-route diversion airports if needed.

 The A330-900 incorporates Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, a new 3D-optimised wing with greater span and lighter composite materials, plus new wingtip Sharklets.

 Airbus says that together, these advances bring greater range (around 7,200 nm with a three-class cabin) and 25% lower fuel consumption compared with older generation aircraft of a similar size.

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