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Friday, 20/04/2018, 21:46:54 PM
Safran ready to support A320 rate increase
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Airbus engine supplier Safran believes current demand for narrowbody aircraft justifies a further increase in production of the A320 family to 50 per month within a few years, even as the supply chain transitions to a new model at the same time.

“It looks like the market is there,” says Jean Paul Herteman, chief executive of Safran, which includes engine manufacturer Snecma. “We would be ready to supply it.”

As one-half of the CFM International consortium with GE Aviation, Snecma supplies the low-pressure sections for the CFM56 engines powering A320s and 737s, as well as the Leap-1-series engines in testing for the A320neo and 737 Max.

Both aircraft types are being delivered at a rate of 42 per month, but the pace will grow sharply over the next four years. As the A320 rate rises to 46 per month in the second quarter of next year, Boeing plans to deliver 47 every month in 2017. So far, Airbus has not responded to Boeing’s announcement last October that 737 production will again rise to 52 per month in 2018.

Herteman, however, says Snecma will be ready to play its role in the ramp-up if Airbus decides to escalate production yet again.

Raising output at the same time that Airbus transitions to the re-engined A320neo and Boeing introduces the 737 Max will be a challenge, he adds. But “it’s type of issue you’d like to have”, he says.

Source: Flightglobal

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