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U.S. aims to retake the lead in carbon fiber, a critical clean-tech enabler

Before thousands of spectators at the world's largest air show, Airbus SAS introduced its newest airliner, the A350 XWB. The twin-engine wide-body flew over Le Bourget Airport in Paris earlier today, one week after its maiden flight. Airbus has secured more than 600 orders for three versions of the aircraft, according to company documents. Beneath the blue and white company livery, the A350's airframe is composed of 72 percent lightweight materials like aluminum and titanium alloys. The most important material, however, is carbon fiber reinforced polymer, making up more than 53 percent of the airframe.


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