Sunday, 25 February 2007

Superjumbo or Mumbo Jumbo?

The Airbus A380 is a double decker aeroplane nicknamed the ‘Superjumbo’ with four engines. It completed its first flight on 27 April 2005 from Toulouse in France. It has now been scheduled to fly commercially in 2007 with Singapore Airlines after many lengthy delays.

This Superjumbo reportedly has double the floorpace than that of the Jumbo 747 allowing for 555 people to be seated in a standard three class layout or an astonishing 853 people with a full economy class placing. The A380 has the capability of flying a distance of 15,000 kilometres (enough to fly direct from Sydney to Chicago) with a cruising speed of about 560 miles per hour which is not too dissimilar to the 747.

Boeing is also developing a new 747-8 which is in direct competition with the Airbus A380 in terms of long haul flights. As there have been many delays with the A380 a lot of Airlines have stated that they may consider ordering the new Boeing in favour of the Airbus.

The Airbus A380 has now preceded the 747 to becoming the biggest passenger jet in the world. But will it live up to its name of ‘Superjumbo’ or have Airbus tried to deliver the impossible? Are companies trying to outdo each other in providing luxuries rather than accommodating safety?

The A380 may very well be bigger but it certainly doesn’t have the splendour and majestic appeal to that of the 747. The aesthetics of the A380 are nothing compared to the most recognisable ‘hump’ on the Boeing and in my opinion the 747 will always be the ‘Superjumbo!’.

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