Turns it into a true, TRUE longhauler. And a true 77W owner.
I'm not fully up to speed on the 350, but how will this beefed up version compare to the 77L?
The manufacturers do not quote range in a way that is easy to compare. AFAIK this appears to show that A350-10 has longer legs than both 77E and 77W, both considered true longhaulers. It will not beat the 77L, which is a ULH machine. The A359 might match r beat the 77L for range now.
With specific reference to the A359LR vs 772LR, there's a couple of ways to compare, I guess.
Typically, 772LR's have been purchased without the additional aux tanks necessary to maximise its range, leaving it with the basic 145.5t fuel available.
At the MTOW of 348t, it will fly max payload about 7 600Nm
With max fuel (145.5t) at MTOW it will fly about 8 200Nm with what looks to me like a 52t payload (assuming you can get 52t in a 772LR)
"Nominal" range is c. 8 600nm but with a TOW some 20t off MTOW (i.e. the plane is fuel volume limited)
Ferry range with an empty plane is about 9 700Nm
A base A350-900 will fly its max payload about 5 900Nm
With max fuel load, (108t) it will fly about 8 800Nm with a 25t payload, (i.e. the plane is weight limited)
Nominal range is c. 8 100Nm at MTOW (some 500Nm short ofthe 772LR)
Ferry range with an empty plane is again 9 700Nm
Note that the ferry ranges are the same, whilst the fuel load has dropped from 145.5t in the 772LR to 108t in the A350, 35% less fuel.
The 280t A350LR will fly its max payload about 6 250Nm, still well short of the 772LR
With max fuel load, (with I assume the same 123t capacity as the A350-1000) it will fly (by my calculations) a whopping 9 900Nm with a 15t payload, which is clearly too small to be meaningful
Nominal range is c. 8 500Nm at MTOW, just short of the 772LR
Ferry range with an empty plane is (by my calculation) c.10 700Nm
This is the plane which will be flying SIN-JFK and vice versa. As can be seen, the base A350 doesn't have the fuel capacity to operate the c. 9 000Nm+ still air that I believe the 8 350Nm sector requires, hence the additional fuel capacity.
With the extra fuel, and extra MTOW though, it can fly (again by my calculations) 9 000Nm still air with a c. 26t payload and 115t fuel, and/or, a 17t payload with 115t fuel, plus 8t "spare" fuel capacity.
Should Airbus ever build the original A350-1000 shrink A350ULR, then, at an MTOW of 308t, and the 123t fuel capacity, I calculate:-
The 308t A350ULR fly its max payload about 7 700Nm - a shade further than the 772LR
With max fuel load, (123t) it will fly (by my calculations) about 9 200Nm but with a 39t payload - this is 700Nm less than the 280t version because of the much higher ZFW, but beats a 772LR with no aux tanks by a large margin, as the plane is not fuel limited.
nominal range is c. 9 400Nm
Ferry range about 10 600Nm
If you now stick the full suite of aux tanks in the 772LR, fuel capacity jumps to 163t.
Based on the above, the R/P charts for the 308t A350 and 772LR with full fuel look remarkably similar.
7 700Nm vs 7 600Nm full payload
9 200nm with 39t vs 9 350nm with 33t at max fuel
Nominal ranges of c. 9 400Nm
ferry ranges of c. 10 600Nm
Note though that the A350 is tanking 123t fuel where the 772LR is tanking 163t fuel, some 32% less fuel.
Clearly taking MTOW up to the 316t just announced by Airbus for the A350-1000 will increase the MZFW max payload range considerably (it would make an outstanding freighter).
Ironically though, it won't change the nominal range, as this is limited by fuel.
That no 772LR is in service with aux tanks (certainly not all 3), implies to me that the "A350-1000 shrink" A350ULR is an unnecessary extravagance, as the 280t standard A350 variant with the 123t fuel capacity will have a nominal range close to the "base" (i.e. no aux tanks) 772LR (8 500Nm vs 8 600Nm) with a similar payload, and a much higher ferry range