Airbus still mulling window technology for A350 XWB

A350 window.JPG

Airbus hasn’t yet decided what type of window technology it will use on the A350 XWB, which is scheduled to enter into service in 2013.

Here is where Airbus stands on the issue:

“We call it a ‘Controllable Sunlight Blocking System’ precisely because we have not yet finalized the technology between electrically dimmable windows (similar to 787) and electromechanical window shades (similar to A380).

“When we decide (and we are not under pressure, as the technology of the dimmable solution is still maturing), they will be optional not basic, in line with our customers’ expectations.”

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8 Responses to Airbus still mulling window technology for A350 XWB

  1. Ted May 10, 2010 at 8:16 pm #

    Thanks for the update, Mary.

  2. Mary Kirby May 10, 2010 at 8:27 pm #

    You’re welcome!

  3. sam May 10, 2010 at 10:25 pm #

    Thanks Mary, early on the contentious window debates between Boeing and Airbus revolved around who’s is bigger. Now that we can see they are very close in size, it may be who’s is better? It is likely Airbus will choose smartglass of some sort. Just look at the crowds surrounding the smart window demo at the 787 mockup and you just know Airbus cant go back to the “analog” mechanical shades. Go digital, be smart.

    The competition behind the scenes for the two competing technologies for smart glass is a story of its own. Electrochemical (EC), the one 787 uses versus suspended particle device (spd)used in Beechcraft’s KingAir as an aftermarket retrofit. SPD has only recently (June 2009) gone into commercial production, so it was too late for Boeing to adopt.

    Again, thanks for staying in tune with this window wonder. sam graham

  4. Uwe May 11, 2010 at 2:57 am #

    The next step for window tech would be zooned dimming
    to emulate the advantageous features that movable
    blinders provide. Movable parts are on the decline
    for obvious reasons.

  5. Happy G. May 17, 2010 at 4:46 am #

    This might seem rather obvious, but it’s all about weight, maintainability and cost. The first 2 criteria actually being a part of the latter. I am sure marketing is all for it, though.

    One thing to note. No longer do the flight attendants need to ask peopel to lower or raise their shades (or electrically dim/undim the windows) as the situation may require. They can control them remotely.

    Irrespective of the system chosen.

  6. Uwe May 17, 2010 at 5:13 am #

    “They can control them remotely.
    Irrespective of the system chosen.”

    Another Big Brother Lever.

    What function does “obstructing passenger view”
    actually have?

  7. Happy G. May 19, 2010 at 5:30 am #

    1. Opening the shades for landing. Regulatory requirement.

    2. Closing the shade when the sun shines directly in other passengers eyes. Passenger comfort.

    Now the flight attendanst don’t have to disturb the passenger with the shade in a sub-optimal state, nor the other passengers in the area while atttempting to rectify the situation.

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