Harbin Composite delivers first major A350 part

The A350 made its maiden flight in June. (Picture © Airbus.)
The A350 made its maiden flight in June. (Picture © Airbus.)

The elevators manufactured at HMC are delivered to Aernnova Aerospace (ANN) in Spain, which will deliver them to the Airbus plant in Getafe, Spain, where they will be integrated into the A350 XWB horizontal tail plane. 

The A350 XWB,  the first Airbus aircraft to be over 50 wt% composite, took its first flight in June (see Airbus A350 XWB makes its maiden flight).

The delivery of the first ship set of A350 XWB elevators by HMC is an important milestone in our long-term partnership with the Chinese aviation industry. 
Rafael González-Ripoll, Airbus China COO 

Under a contract signed by HMC and ANN in 2010, HMC is responsible for manufacturing and assembling the complete set of carbon fibre composite elevators. (An elevator is a movable control surface in the horizontal tail plane that makes the aircraft pitch up or down to increase or reduce its flight altitude.)

During the initial phase the A350 elevators were solely produced at ANN. Production in China started in 2012. After a period of transition, during which the elevators are produced at both ANN and HMC, the Harbin Manufacturing Centre will become the sole supplier of A350 XWB elevators.

According to an agreement signed in 2007 between Airbus and the Chinese government, Airbus agreed to allocate 5% of the A350 XWB airframe to be manufactured in China. The work packages to be carried out by HMC are a significant part of this.

Harbin Hafei Airbus Composite Manufacturing Centre

Harbin Hafei Airbus Composite Manufacturing Centre Company Ltd (HMC) is a joint venture between Airbus China (20%) and a group of Chinese partners comprising:

  • Harbin Aircraft Industry Group Corporation Ltd (HAIG, with 50%);
  • Hafei Aviation Industry Company Ltd (HAI, 10%);
  • AviChina Industry & Technology Company Ltd (AVICHINA, 10%); and
  • Harbin Development Zone Infrastructure Development Company Ltd (HELI, 10%).

The centre commenced production of elevators for single-aisle Airbus aircraft in December 2009. Deliveries of single-aisle parts and components commenced from July 2010 and the delivery of A350 XWB components started in 2012. S19 Maintenance Door is the first A350 XWB component delivered by the HMC.  

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