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Old 16th January 2018, 17:59   #1
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Default Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

Source: The NYTimes

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The days may be numbered for the world’s largest passenger aircraft.

Airbus, the European aerospace group that makes the A380 superjumbo, said on Monday that it would have to end production of the plane if its only major customer, Emirates, did not order more.

The admission by John Leahy, the company’s chief operating officer, was the latest indication that Airbus miscalculated more than two decades ago when it bet that clogged runways would create demand for larger planes that could deliver more people with fewer landing slots. Instead, airlines bypassed the major hubs and ordered midsize planes that could fly directly between regional airports.

“The A380 was better suited to 1995, before air routes fragmented,” said Richard Aboulafia, vice president of analysis at Teal Group Corp., a consulting firm in Fairfax, Va.
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Old 16th January 2018, 18:24   #2
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

Thats sad in a way. I love the legspace and shoulder room in economy of the Emirates A380. I came out fresh from the 8 hour flight thanks to this. And the flight was packed this december when I flew to EU. So, I think its working out for Emirates with the A380.
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Old 16th January 2018, 18:43   #3
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

Sorry to see it go. I must admit I'm old school 747 enthusiast. But in all honesty the 380 beats just about any other heavy out there on all aspects.

I have done multiple trips from India to Europe/USA with Lufthansa A380s mostly. Their business class is superb in terms of comfort and quiteness. Couple of years ago I got an upgrade flying from San Francisco back to Frankfurt. Flying 1st class on these planes is an experience second to none. The bathroom of 1st class was larger then the one in our apartement. (Not quite sure what the rational behind have two of these huge bathrooms in 1st class is, but then again, travelling first class has nothing to do with rationale I guess.)

The A380 was never the (commercial) success Airbus was counting on. In addition, airports had to invest substantially to accomodate the A380. New terminals, jetties, taxiways had to widened etc.

As an aviation enhusiast and private pilot I'm just sorry to see her go. Certainly earned it's place in history. Of course, they will be flying around the globe for years if not decades to come. At some point in time they will stop the passenger services and start freight only. At least that's what is happening to the 747-400 fleet as we speak. Although, even there, quite a number of air frames is lilkely to ge straight to the scrapper after their last commercial passenger flight.

Commericial aviation is not about sentiment, but about economics.

Will be interesting to see what/which airframes end up at various museums around the world.

Jeroen
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Old 16th January 2018, 18:56   #4
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Arrow Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

Oh, that's not good news.

Any reason why air lines that run non-stop long-haul flights (e.g. United & Air India between Mumbai / Delhi & Newark), continue to use the 777-200ER or 300ER instead of switching to the A380 or the 787 Dreamliner?
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Old 16th January 2018, 18:59   #5
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

I think airport access for the 380 is rather limited. Many airports are either not equipped or are unwilling to host it. In any case the yanks will do their best (worst) to kill it. Remember the Concorde was also 'not welcome' at many US airports.
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Old 16th January 2018, 19:27   #6
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

I was just going through a series of articles on this story last evening and wondered the how and why behind this development. The aviation industry has been ever-warming up to a hub-and-spoke model rather than a point A-point B one so such aircrafts possibly enabled that.

I'm very curious about what happens next in terms of the "change". Was it just plain politics (Airbus vs. Boeing), operational aspects or economics that led to the A380 not being the success it was hoped to be. Both Boeing (with the 787 Dreamliner) and Airbus (with the A330 neo) have been doing a lot of work to make these more efficient. So, is the industry moving to a different operating model where they want mid-size aircrafts to become more efficient and phase out large-bodied aircrafts.

On a related note, all of last few weeks, there has been a lot of coverage on the farewell tour of Delta Airlines' last 747.

I haven't had the opportunity to travel in one but I've only heard terrific reviews of the A380.

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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
Although, even there, quite a number of air frames is lilkely to ge straight to the scrapper after their last commercial passenger flight.
Scavenged for parts/metal? Why does the Arizona plane graveyard still have 100/1000s of aircrafts still lying around?

Last edited by libranof1987 : 16th January 2018 at 19:30.
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Old 16th January 2018, 19:31   #7
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

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Originally Posted by aah78 View Post
Any reason why air lines that run non-stop long-haul flights (e.g. United & Air India between Mumbai / Delhi & Newark), continue to use the 777-200ER or 300ER instead of switching to the A380 or the 787 Dreamliner?
Economics. They will deploy their fleet to make the most money. That's a combination of many different factors, distance and type of aircraft (number of seats, fuel useage) being just a few factors.

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Originally Posted by sgiitk View Post
I think airport access for the 380 is rather limited. Many airports are either not equipped or are unwilling to host it. In any case the yanks will do their best (worst) to kill it. Remember the Concorde was also 'not welcome' at many US airports.
I think it's more about which airports require such an airplane. There are limited destinations that make sense to use the A380 to start with. I'm not sure if airports have actually resisted.

Whereas the Concorde was indeed for many years hampered by USA political pressure I'm not sure if the same is true for the A380. It's also fair to say that outside France and UK at the beginning of Concorde just about every nation opposed Concorde. For many different reasons, but still.

Just came across this very specific A380 website:

https://www.iflya380.com/?origin=AMS

Enjoy!

BR Jeroen
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Old 16th January 2018, 21:03   #8
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

I believe this is because Emirates is looking at newer options from Boeing especially the new Boeing 777X which is cheaper to operate and more efficient than the A380.
It also has folding wing tips to enter smaller airports!
http://www.boeing.com/commercial/777x/

Apart from this, most of these airline companies are rethinking their strategies to increase profit which calls for smaller aircrafts.
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Old 16th January 2018, 22:16   #9
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

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Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
Scavenged for parts/metal? Why does the Arizona plane graveyard still have 100/1000s of aircrafts still lying around?
Yes, airplanes can be recycled. Electronics, aluminium, wiring (copper/aluminium) etc etc. Actually, there is a large second hand market for these parts as well. Relevant parts get refurbished, tested, certified etc. etc.

The Arizona graveyard has two functions, scraping and storage. Due to it’s climate/environment planes can be stored for considerable time with relatively low preparation and thus at low cost. So it is essentially a moth ball fleet and quite regularly planes are pulled back into service for civilian and military alike.

Jeroen
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Old 16th January 2018, 22:35   #10
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

My travel to EU / UK has been mostly on A 380 Emirates business class. Reason for choice has been availability more than anything else. However, apart from the bar / individual half cubicles I have found the 777 300ER to be more comfortable in terms of noise levels and strangely enough less bumpy although one could argue that turbulence has external dependence.

It's going to be awhile before international flights take off from second tier cities as important business does not.

Travelling from Gatwick to London is itself a pain. So there may not be too many takers for flights from second tier cities anytime soon.

Last edited by AMG Power : 16th January 2018 at 22:58.
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Old 16th January 2018, 23:25   #11
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

Quote:
Originally Posted by aah78 View Post
Any reason why air lines that run non-stop long-haul flights (e.g. United & Air India between Mumbai / Delhi & Newark), continue to use the 777-200ER or 300ER instead of switching to the A380 or the 787 Dreamliner?
I guess airline companies find "around 300" passenger capacity aircraft economical from capacity utilization point of view. A380 might run full house during the holiday / peak season but probably runs half empty at other times.

With 777 type aircraft, the airline has the flexibility to run two aircraft during the peak season and just one during the lean season.
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Old 17th January 2018, 00:51   #12
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Originally Posted by AMG Power View Post
Travelling from Gatwick to London is itself a pain. So there may not be too many takers for flights from second tier cities anytime soon.

Not quite sure why you feel travelling from Gatwick to London is a pain. There are so many option, the various trains being the fastest.

From the Gatwick website;

The Gatwick Express non-stop train service to Victoria runs every 15 minutes with a journey time of 30 minutes.
Book Gatwick Express online and save 10%.

Southern trains services operate four times an hour to Victoria via East Croydon and Clapham Junction with a journey time to Victoria of around 35 minutes.
Book Southern Trains

Services to London Bridge, London Blackfriars, Farringdon and St Pancras International also run four times an hour with a journey time of between 30 and 45 minutes

Really, it doesn't get much better these days for an international airport near to a metropolitan city.

Jeroen
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Old 17th January 2018, 05:19   #13
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

I use Gatwick only for short haul flights into / from EU. On quite a few of the occasions, the train services weren't working properly and it was the Gatwick express buses that were running and these take an hour to reach central London with quite a few stops in between. Not something that happens with Heathrow.



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Old 17th January 2018, 07:25   #14
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

The Airbus A380 is a epic business school case study, possibly one of the best in human history and existence. It is proof that a battalion of engineers and hard work have 0 relevance in a free market economy.

Rule No. 1: Have something to sell that the customer wants
Rule No. 2: Customer doesn't care about your efforts - he only cares about his needs.

It's a commercial world, and the Airbus A380 is an awesome example of that. It's so sad that such a marvel has 0 relevance in the modern economy.

Imagine the sheer number of paper drawings, man hours, countless nights at the office the Airbus guys put in ?

Perfect proof of why smart work matters, not hard work. This is something Leonardo Da Vinci would've been proud of as a collective achievement in the engineering and hard sciences majors fraternity.

Last edited by D33-PAC : 17th January 2018 at 07:26.
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Old 17th January 2018, 12:13   #15
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Default Re: Days may be numbered for world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380

Quote:
Originally Posted by AMG Power View Post
Travelling from Gatwick to London is itself a pain. So there may not be too many takers for flights from second tier cities anytime soon.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
Not quite sure why you feel travelling from Gatwick to London is a pain. There are so many option, the various trains being the fastest.
Jeroen
I fly frequently to London (also lived in LHR for quite some time) from BLR and I too prefer Heathrow over Gatwick. Also the fact that the airlines I fly on to London usually terminate at Heathrow (QR, BA, never emirates - totally overhyped airline).

Also the fact that I use the tube to get to my destination simply makes Heathrow the better choice, also the cheapest way to get to central london. The places where I stay are usually a walk from the Piccadily line which connects to Heathrow.

Heathrow lies about 18 miles west of Central London whereas Gatwick is about 30 miles south. Even if you are a taxi person, a taxi ride from Gatwick to Central London will cost a fortune and not to mention a very long cab ride.

But in terms of passenger numbers and Lounges, they fare equally. Gatwick can also get as busy as Heathrow at times.

Gatwick to London isn't quite a pain for me, but the fact that most trains terminate at Victoria/London Bridge means I need to travel quite a distance again to get to Central London.

Sorry for going OT:
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