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Aircraft noise

For quieter skies over Europe

Emissions and noise fall considerably with each new generation of aircraft. Over the last 30 years, aircraft have become about 75 per cent quieter. The latest Airbus model constitutes another major step forward. Compared to the types of aircraft it replaces, the A320neo reduces perceived noise by half, and cuts fuel burn and emissions by up to 20 per cent per seat.

A quiet success

Airlines around the world noticed the improvements as well, and the A320neo – which was first delivered in early 2016 – became the fastest selling aircraft in history. It offers proof that the cleanest, greenest and quietest aircraft are also the most successful.

Investing in the quietest aircraft on the market brings a number of benefits for carriers: They are under growing pressure to reduce noise levels, older aircraft face operating restrictions, and more and more airports are introducing noise-related landing charges. There is also more regulatory pressure. For instance, a few years ago the EU introduced rules for noise-related operating restrictions at airports.

Cutting noise in half with the A320neo was not an easy feat. It required years of research and considerable investment by Airbus and the engine manufacturers. The European Commission supported these efforts as part of the Clean Sky 2 programme.

A320neo: cutting noise in half

The result is a win-win-win situation: Airport residents benefit from significantly reduced noise levels, European airlines remain competitive thanks to the A320neo’s low operating costs, and the European aerospace industry is buoyed by an over 50 per cent market share in the crucial single-aisle market segment. Airbus is currently ramping up production in Toulouse as well as in Hamburg, where a fourth A320neo final assembly line will open in November.

The A320 family of aircraft is the workhorse of many European carriers. This size of aircraft accounts for up to three quarters of traffic at many European airports, so a quantum leap in this class of aircraft brings benefits to citizens across the EU, while also securing tens of thousands of highly-qualified jobs in the European aerospace industry.

Further reducing noise

Our ambition does not end here. Airbus is fully committed to reducing noise further, and we are currently working on a whole range of innovations that could make aircraft even quieter in the future. To achieve this, we need strong, targeted research programmes at the European and at the national level which support efforts to reduce noise emissions further.

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