Airbus reportedly intends to reduce A380 production rates from 2.7 aircraft per month to 2.3 aircraft per month, due to the need to make modifications to A380 wings to deal with the issue of micro cracks appearing in wing brackets and fasteners, as reported by La Tribune. The changes will be performed at the A380 wing production facility in Broughton, UK, instead of the A380 final assembly line in Toulouse, France. Airbus estimated late last year the modification will cost approximately EUR105 million. Production will be affected for up to eight months. Airbus still expects to deliver around 30 A380s in 2012, up from the 26 delivered in 2011. The manufacturer has delivered four A380s for the year to Mar-2012.
Airbus to cut A380 production rate by 15% to deal with wing bracket cracking
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Since a 2016 government change in Taiwan, China Airlines – long a sleepy government airline – has shown greater interest in growth. However, Europe is not a strong market for the airline. In Paris there is opportunity to work with fellow SkyTeam member Air France. This potentially makes Paris less costly for China Airlines than its planned resumption of service to London.
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Iran Air has dropped preliminary plans to take 12 A380s. Although this is being marked as the latest blow to the A380 order, Iran Air taking A380s was always a distant prospect. Tehran is a small hub prospect in the short term and, irrespective of whether Iran Air could find sustainable markets for the type, by the time Iran Air planned to receive its first A380 the type would be well into its mid-life, with dwindling spare parts and support.
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