Feeds

Airbus rolls out A380

Fanfare of trumpets for world's biggest passenger airliner

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Airbus this morning rolled out its twin deck, 555-seat A380 superjumbo at a celeb-packed ceremony in Toulouse.

Politicians including Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac queued up to praise the €11bn project: the latter hailed it as the "crowning achievement of a human and industrial adventure" while the former confirmed the A380 as "the most exciting new aircraft in the world, a symbol of economic strength and technical innovation".

The Airbus A380

The A380 has already attracted orders from 11 airlines, Malaysian Airlines, Qantas and Virgin Atlantic included. Totals orders are reported as 149 aircraft, well on the way to the 250 unit break-even figure estimated by Airbus chief executive Noel Forgeard.

It is not all, however, clear blue skies for the A380 project. Earlier this year, Virgin announced that it was postponing delivery of its first A380 until 2007, due to "delays in airports - particularly that of Los Angeles (LAX) - preparing to receive the enormous aircraft". The company also reported difficulties in obtaining kit to customise the behemoth's interior.

Unsuprisingly, the A380's budget has attracted some concern, notably in the area of government "launch aid loans" without which pundits speculate the aircraft would never have got off the ground.

For its part, Airbus is playing it cool on the matter of a possible €1.5bn overspend. Airbus commercial director John Leahy told the BBC: "That sounds quite a lot of money until you realise you are dealing with a programme which is about €11bn."

Rival Boeing, meanwhile, is directing its energies into smaller aircraft, notably the 7E7 Dreamliner (Flash site) - already ordered by Continental, Japan and Vietnam Airlines.

The A380 will make its first flight in April. Deliveries of the aircraft begin in 2006. ®

Related stories

Airbus behemoth faces the press
A380 Airbus suffers Virgin knock-back
Airbus offers MS a lift

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Bond villains lament as Wicked Lasers withdraw death ray
Want to arm that shark? Better get in there quick
Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers
Windmills, solar, tidal - all a 'false hope', say Stanford PhDs
SEX BEAST SEALS may be egging each other on to ATTACK PENGUINS
Boffin: 'I think the behaviour is increasing in frequency'
Reuse the Force, Luke: SpaceX's Elon Musk reveals X-WING designs
And a floating carrier for recyclable rockets
The next big thing in medical science: POO TRANSPLANTS
Your brother's gonna die, kid, unless we can give him your, well ...
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
Britain's HUMAN DNA-strewing Moon mission rakes in £200k
3 days, and Kickstarter moves lander 37% nearer takeoff
Simon's says quantum computing will work
Boffins blast algorithm with half a dozen qubits
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.