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Airbus A320 jet history and how its became Boeing 737 rival

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Virgin America Airbus A320A Virgin America Airbus A320.Flickr/Tomas Del Coro

  • The Airbus A320 is the second best-selling airliner of all time behind the Boeing 737.
  • Through the end of November, Airbus has sold 14,421 aircraft belonging to the A320-family compared to 15,026 orders for the Boeing 737. 
  • Over the years, Airbus has expanded the A320 into a family of jets including the stretched A321 as well as the smaller A319 and A318.
  • The A320 family is also known for its innovative use of fly-by-wire control systems as well as a pioneering of cockpit commonality. 

The Airbus A320 is one of the most popular airliners in the world. 

It’s also Europe’s answer to Boeing’s stalwart 737, still the best selling airliner of all time. However, the A320 is quickly catching up. 

Through the end of November, Boeing has sold a whopping 15,026 737s. The A320 and its derivatives are close behind with 14,421 orders. However, it should be noted that Boeing began selling the 737 nearly two decades before the A320’s launch in 1984.

Since then, the European jetliner has actually outpaced the venerable Boeing in sales. From 1984 to the present, the A320 has outsold the 737 by 438 planes. 

Read more: The amazing history of the Boeing 737, the best-selling airliner of all time.

The A320’s sales prowess is not the aircraft’s only claim to fame. At the time of its debut, the narrow-body Airbus was also one of the most complex and innovative airliners ever attempted.

In an interview with Business Insider, Teal Group aviation industry analyst Richard Aboulafia called the A320 and its many technological innovations “Airbus’s greatest contribution to commercial aviation.”

The A320 helped push forward the adoption of fly-by-wire technology, side-stick controls, and cockpit commonality in commercial airliners. 

Since its first flight in 1987, the A320 family has become a short and medium-haul workhorse for airlines around the world. With the introduction of the next generation A320neo and A321neo, the aircraft can now add trans-Atlantic long-haul to its long repertoire of capabilities. 

The list prices for the A320 family of jets range from $77.4 million for the A318ceo to $129.5 million for the A321neo. The A320 lists for $101 million while the A320neo has a $110.6 million entry price. 

Here’s a look back at how the Airbus A320 came to become to the Boeing 737’s greatest foe. 

Get the latest Boeing stock price here.

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More groups join in support of women in STEM program at Carleton

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OTTAWA — Major companies and government partners are lending their support to Carleton University’s newly established Women in Engineering and Information Technology Program.

The list of supporters includes Mississauga-based construction company EllisDon.

The latest to announce their support for the program also include BlackBerry QNX, CIRA (Canadian Internet Registration Authority), Ericsson, Nokia, Solace, Trend Micro, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, CGI, Gastops, Leonardo DRS, Lockheed Martin Canada, Amdocs and Ross.

The program is officially set to launch this September.

It is being led by Carleton’s Faculty of Engineering and Design with the goal of establishing meaningful partnerships in support of women in STEM.  

The program will host events for women students to build relationships with industry and government partners, create mentorship opportunities, as well as establish a special fund to support allies at Carleton in meeting equity, diversity and inclusion goals.

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VR tech to revolutionize commercial driver training

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Serious Labs seems to have found a way from tragedy to triumph? The Edmonton-based firm designs and manufactures virtual reality simulators to standardize training programs for operators of heavy equipment such as aerial lifts, cranes, forklifts, and commercial trucks. These simulators enable operators to acquire and practice operational skills for the job safety and efficiency in a risk-free virtual environment so they can work more safely and efficiently.

The 2018 Humboldt bus catastrophe sent shock waves across the industry. The tragedy highlighted the need for standardized commercial driver training and testing. It also contributed to the acceleration of the federal government implementing a Mandatory Entry-Level Training (MELT) program for Class 1 & 2 drivers currently being adopted across Canada. MELT is a much more rigorous standard that promotes safety and in-depth practice for new drivers.

Enter Serious Labs. By proposing to harness the power of virtual reality (VR), Serious Labs has earned considerable funding to develop a VR commercial truck driving simulator.

The Government of Alberta has awarded $1 million, and Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) is contributing an additional $2 million for the simulator development. Commercial deployment is estimated to begin in 2024, with the simulator to be made available across Canada and the United States, and with the Alberta Motor Transport Association (AMTA) helping to provide simulator tests to certify that driver trainees have attained the appropriate standard. West Tech Report recently took the opportunity to chat with Serious Labs CEO, Jim Colvin, about the environmental and labour benefits of VR Driver Training, as well as the unique way that Colvin went from angel investor to CEO of the company.

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Next-Gen Tech Company Pops on New Cover Detection Test

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While the world comes out of the initial stages of the pandemic, COVID-19 will be continue to be a threat for some time to come. Companies, such as Zen Graphene, are working on ways to detect the virus and its variants and are on the forefronts of technology.

Nanotechnology firm ZEN Graphene Solutions Ltd. (TSX-Venture:ZEN) (OTCPK:ZENYF), is working to develop technology to help detect the COVID-19 virus and its variants. The firm signed an exclusive agreement with McMaster University to be the global commercializing partner for a newly developed aptamer-based, SARS-CoV-2 rapid detection technology.

This patent-pending technology uses clinical samples from patients and was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. The test is considered extremely accurate, scalable, saliva-based, affordable, and provides results in under 10 minutes.

Shares were trading up over 5% to $3.07 in early afternoon trade.

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