China Eastern gets A320 wing-tip aircraft

BY    2013-05-19 07:22:28

  China Eastern Airlines became the first Chinese carrier on Friday to get an Airbus 320 aircraft equipped with wing-tip devices.

  The devices, known as sharklets, are placed at right angles at the end of the wing.

  They are made from light-weight composites that can offer up to 4 percent fuel reduction and the flexibility of either adding an additional 100 nautical miles range or increasing payload capacity up to 450 kilograms, according to Airbus.

  The devices are optional on the A320 and standard on all members of A320neo aircraft.

  The first A320 aircraft equipped with sharklets was delivered to Air Asia in December 2012 and as many as 47 A320 aircraft equipped with sharklets were a delivered globally by mid-May.

  "China Eastern will shortly introduce 97 sharklet equipped A320 aircraft to our fleet," said Shu Mingjiang, vice-president flight operations of China Eastern.

  The sharklet-equipped A320 aircraft is also the first plane of its type to be assembled in Tianjin and it will make its first commercial flight from Shanghai to Dalian on Saturday.

  The Airbus Tianjin Delivery Centre has delivered 126 aircraft since June 2009 and it plans to deliver 46 aircraft in 2013.

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