Sichuan Airlines has selected Honeywell’s 131-9A auxiliary power units (APUs) for its A320 fleet of aircraft to help reduce flight delays and cancellations and create a more pleasant flying experience for passengers.

As part of the five-year agreement, Honeywell will provide the 131-9A APU for the Chinese carrier’s 93 new A320 aircraft that will enter service by 2025. The agreement also includes retrofitting the airline’s 141 existing A320 aircraft with the same Honeywell APU, making this the largest APU retrofit deal in Honeywell’s history.

Providing electrical power and air conditioning while a plane is on the ground, an APU is a critical piece of aircraft equipment. It helps ensure passenger comfort and supplies the air source before a pilot is ready to start the main engines.

“We are pleased to collaborate with Honeywell,” said Li Yue, Executive Vice President of Sichuan Airlines. “With the aviation industry being significantly impacted by COVID-19, reliable and innovative products and solutions are highly demanded for airlines’ recovery and future development,” Yue added.

Having first taken to the skies in 1950, Honeywell has built more than 100,000 APUs since then. More than 36,000 are currently in service across both fixed wing and rotary wing aircraft and in 2009 the Honeywell 131-9A APU on an Airbus A320 played a critical role in the emergency landing of US airways Flight 1549 in New York’s Hudson River.

Commenting on the collaboration with Sichuan Airlines, Honeywell Aerospace Asia Pacific President, Steven Lien said: “We see a strong recovery and large potential for China’s aviation industry, as well as local airlines’ growing competitiveness worldwide. Honeywell is committed to supporting this market, providing customers with exceptional solutions and equipping local support teams to help them create value and improve efficiency.”

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