Viva adds A321s to Airbus order

Airbus has firmed up an expanded order by Viva Aerobus for its A321neo, as well as a new commitment from an undisclosed client for the A330 Family on the third day of the Farnborough International Airshow.

Viva Aerobus, the Mexican ultra-low cost carrier, firmed up an amendment for 25 incremental A321neos and upsized 16 conversions of A320neos to the 240-seat A321neos to their existing purchase agreement.

This order brings the all-Airbus operator’s total orderbook to 80 A320 Family aircraft (including 15 A320ceo, 24 A320neo and 41 A321neo) and the airline’s total backlog from 36 to 61 aircraft.

Gian Carlo Nucci, CEO of Grupo Viva Aerobus, said the additional aircraft will allow the airline to “capture opportunities in Mexico” and “will help us offer even lower fares, more destinations and allow us to continue improving our customer service.”

An undisclosed customer, meanwhile, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Airbus for the six A330neos at the airshow.


Reaching for the skies

Away from the aircraft order book, Airbus also announced that it would be extending its Skywise platform to suppliers.

Building on the launch of the Skywise open data platform for airlines at the Paris Air Show last year, Airbus is now extending the scope of cloud-based big-data analytics into the supply chain.

This is the first time that Airbus and suppliers are co-innovating with data sharing and analytics during an early adopter phase and Airbus say the offering will connect selected suppliers to the platform and enable “unprecedented” improvements in their reliability, quality and performance, and “transform aviation through better performance.”

“I’m very pleased to announce the next stage of uniting the aviation industry’s data, by connecting suppliers to the Skywise platform,” Marc Fontaine, Airbus’ digital transformation officer said.

He continued: “The scope and power of data integration technology, which only became available recently, is now bringing productivity gains which benefit all stakeholders in the aviation ecosystem – from suppliers and airlines to OEMs. When our aircraft are reliable and flying passengers, we are all better off.”

Airbus has been working with selected suppliers since late last year during an early adopter phase to evaluate the features and functionalities.

Currently 10 ‘early adopter’ suppliers are working with Airbus to test and help mature the new supplier-related components of Skywise.

Three of the participants are collaborating with Airbus on strategic ‘use cases’ encompassing; supply chain, quality and aircraft operability. For each of these sectors, Airbus has developed dedicated applications with its Skywise partner – Palantir Technologies.

Airbus said these applications are already demonstrating success, and Airbus is expanding access to new platform members

The applications include Skywise Dispatch, which aims to increase efficiency and responsiveness to supply chain disruptions and is designed to improve demand management, aircraft assembly configuration, and on-time delivery, notably to prevent line-stops. The lead partner in the pilot phase is Premium Aerotec.

Skywise Object Explorer aims to improve the quality of suppliers’ services and commodities by reducing the cost of non-quality incurred by Airbus and suppliers, reducing the occurrence of quality shortfalls by identifying such trends early and accelerating resolution. The key partner Thales has seen the application typically deliver a 30% reduction in part removals due to non-conformities (on a per-component basis).

Skywise Spotlight brings together Airbus and suppliers in a platform where they can collaborate securely and in real-time to resolve in-service issues faster and more accurately by leveraging in-service aircraft data to identify the root-causes of operational issues and exploring how to improve predictive maintenance services for airlines. The team behind this collaboration is the partnership between easyjet, Liebherr and Airbus.


Written by: Mark Thomas

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