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FACC wins a 500M€ contract to develop overhead stowage and ceiling panels for new A320

News International-French

5 Sep 2017

Airbus once again relies on high tech from FACC for its “Airspace“ cabin in the A320 family: FACC has concluded a contract with Airbus for the delivery of the overhead stowage compartments and ceiling panels.

FACC wins a 500M€ contract to develop overhead stowage and ceiling panels for new A320

The contract provides for a supply volume of more than 500M€. Thus, it continues the decades of cooperation for the delivery of cabin interiors with the European aircraft manufacturer.

“In addition to a high level of comfort and sufficient space, the most important aspects of a passenger cabin are low weight, convenient handling, low operating costs and high reliability”, said Robert Machtlinger, CEO of FACC AG. “We strive to meet these requirements through consistent research work and by developing innovative and lightweight solutions creating more space in the cabin. With the new ‘Airspace’ cabin, Airbus offers its passengers an exceptional feel-good ambience. We are particularly happy that the Austrian high-tech enterprise FACC gets the chance to support this level of comfort by contributing technological advances for the A320 family.”

Apart from its unique aesthetics, the “Airspace” cabin concept launched by Airbus in the course of the Paris Airshow 2017 offers passengers a maximum of comfort and more space. The "Airspace" core elements "Ambience", "Comfort", "Services" and "Design" are part of Airbus's passenger-friendly cabin development. Wider seats and aisles, atmospheric LED lighting, spacious entrance areas and lavatories featuring modern design, as well as bigger overhead stowage compartments make traveling on board of the Airbus aircraft more comfortable. According to the present contract FACC will develop, in close cooperation with Airbus, the so-called “Airspace XL Bins”, the biggest overhead stowage compartments in the category of short and medium-haul aircraft. Series production will start in 2018. The newly designed overhead stowage compartments will offer space for eight instead of previously five items of baggage. Furthermore, the luggage pieces may be up to 61 x 40.6 x 25.4 cm in size and thus larger than before. In addition, FACC will deliver the ceiling panels, which, apart from their common function as paneling, will also provide for uniform illumination in the cabin. The task of FACC in the course of interior development is to implement the new Airbus cabin concept as best as possible and to ensure maximum luggage volume through new innovations. In this regard, Airbus can rely on FACC as a proven and reliable partner, who has been an interior supplier of Airbus since 2001 and who has co-designed the fourth generation of a new cabin layout for the A320 family, this time the “Airspace” cabin. FACC innovations such as the new and improved combination of different materials and manufacturing technologies enable FACC to offer, together with Airbus, a product with significantly increased stowage as well as improved component weight.

From late 2018 onward, the first new “Airspace” overhead stowage compartments will leave the highly efficient assembly production line of FACC. Copyright: FACC

FACC is currently working on the detail development of the individual components. According to the contract, the first deliveries for the “Airspace” cabin will be supplied to Airbus in late 2018. From the beginning of 2019 onward, Airbus will offer the new “Airspace XL Bins”, for the A320 aircraft to the airlines as an alternative interior to the current versions, which are also manufactured by FACC. Owing to the great demand, the present order level of the A320 family - in its class, the A320 family is the most successful aircraft on the market - is more than 5,000 aircraft.Moreover, the airlines may order the new “Airspace” cabin also to be upgraded in existing aircraft, of which currently more than 7,300 are operated by airlines. “The success of the A320 family also substantially benefits FACC”, said Robert Machtlinger. “The high sales figures give reason to expect a high demand of new as well as upgrade cabins and thus additional contract volume for FACC. The utilization of the FACC Interiors division is thus ensured far beyond the year 2019, and FACC will more than fulfill its role as a job motor in Austria.”