While Airbus declined to specifically discuss the announcement, Qatar Airways’ decision to ground the aircraft raised questions about the A350s’ carbon composite fuselage, designed to make the twin-aisle aircraft lighter and cheaper to operate by burning less jet fuel. Qatar Airways also is one of the world’s top operators of the aircraft.
In its statement, Qatar Airways said it had been monitoring the degradation beneath the paint on the fuselage of the aircraft for some time. It described the issue as a “significant condition,” without elaborating.
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