Monday, May 6, 2013

PHOTOS: Air Astana takes delivery of its first Sharklet equipped A320


Air Astana has taken delivery of its first A320 aircraft equipped with Airbus’ Sharklet fuel saving wing tip devices
Photo courtesy of Airbus media relations
I’ve just launched an ‘aircraft livery of the week’ contest on my Facebook page, with people asked to vote for their favourite aircraft livery from two different contenders.

As part of the first contest, I selected the brand new Airbus A320s of Wizz Air Hungary and LAN Airlines (both of which are equipped with Sharklets). So far, the voting has been quite even, click here to check out the photos and select your favourite.

And thanks to the latest press release from Airbus, it looks like I have another contender for my next ‘aircraft livery of the week’ contest… Air Astana!

Kazakhstan’s flag carrier has also taken delivery of its first Airbus A320 with Sharklet wing-tip devices. In fact, it’s become the first airline in the region to benefit from the new wing-tip devices.

A closer look at the Air Astana Airbus A320 sharklet
A closer look at the A320 sharklet

Air Astana’s A320, powered by IAE V2500 engines, features a two class cabin with seating for 148 passengers (16 in business class and 132 in economy).

MORE PHOTOS: Airbus completes lightning strike tests on A350 XWB

“We are delighted to receive our first A320 Sharklet equipped aircraft which will optimize our operating costs significantly, while reducing the environmental impact,” said Peter Foster, President and CEO Air Astana.

Made from light-weight composites, Sharklets are newly designed wing-tip devices that improve the aircraft’s aerodynamics and cut the airline’s fuel burn and emissions by four per cent on longer sectors.

They are and are 2.4 metres tall and offer the flexibility to A320 Family operators of either adding around 100 nautical miles more range or allowing a maximum payload capability increase of 450 kilograms.

MORE PHOTOS: Tail section for first Qatar Airways A380 rolls out of paint shop

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