Airbus A380: The World's Largest Passenger Jet
The Airbus A380 is a massive aeroplane with two floors. It is currently the largest passenger plane in service and one of them would cost you US$428 million!
The Airbus A380 was designed by Airbus to try and beat Boeing's 747-400, and, before it was called the A380, it was originally named the Airbus A3XX. In actual fact, the A380's wings are 54% larger than the 747's!
The primary users of this truly amazing airplane are Emirates, Singapore Airlines, Lufthansa and Qantas, but other airlines, such as British Airways and Air France have a few of them. The A380 is so large that only 20 runways in the world are capable of landing this beast. In our country, we only have Heathrow Airport, London!
Even though this aircraft is so big and the engines are so large, it has the lowest emissions of any passenger aircraft!
The A380 is always used for long-haul flights to places, like China, Australia and America, and, because of this, it flies at 43,000 feet with a maximum speed of 640 mph. This beats the Airbus A320's top speed of 562 mph by miles, if you'll pardon the pun!
The wings and the powerful Rolls Royce engines of the A380 are made in England, but the rest of the parts, such as the tail and fuselage are made in Spain and Germany. The parts are then transported by ships and by land vehicles to France, where the whole plane is assembled. After this, the plane will then be flown over to the country where the airline has bought it.
Only 156 of these planes have been built (as of March 31st 2015) compared to the 6494 planes of the Airbus A320 family! However, being that the price of the A380 is almost four times the price of a little A318, only certain airlines can afford to buy them.
The A380 is certified to take 853 passengers, however, some airlines configure the seating plan so that there are fewer seats, but, in this case, they would charge more money. Some of these planes even have onboard showers and, in the first class, an airline has the possibility to include reclining flat beds. For the 21 members of cabin crew though, there are crew's quarters, which include complete beds where cabin crew can sleep if they are on a long-haul flight.
Airlines that own many A380's will often be quite expensive and luxurious. A first class ticket to Los Angeles on the A380 can cost in excess of £10,000, which is the price of a second-hand Porsche Boxster.
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Image Credit: Wikimedia