Two and a half years after its first flight, the Airbus A380 airliner entered service late in October with Singapore Airlines (SIA). While SIA has received the only example of the super large airliner slated for 2007 delivery, next August Emirates Airline is slated to get the first of the 55 A380s it has ordered to date.
In Boeing’s estimation, the Middle East will become the third largest market in the world for jumbo-sized airplanes over the next 20 years.
International approval of commercial operations by single-engine turbine airplanes at night, in bad weather and over inhospitable terrain, which is now prohibited
in many countries, received a considerable boost with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) operations panel recommendation that such operations
Airbus and Singapore Airlines marked delivery of the first A380 today at the airframer’s headquarters in Toulouse, France, in front of 500 well-wishers, company executives, government dignitaries and likely a few skeptics.
After more than two years of declines, uncertainty and just plain hanging on, ground support equipment manufacturers are finally seeing their industry gaining strength and sales slowly increasing. Has the economic upturn they have all been waiting for quietly arrived?
Perhaps, but company leaders are not ready to celebrate just yet.
Despite the large-cabin Gulfstream’s aura of being the all-American business jet, it
has significant European content. On the G350/450 that content includes the pair of Rolls-Royce Tay engines, and on the G500/550 it includes not only the Rolls-Royce Deutschland BR710 turbofans but also the tail, which is made by Stork Fokker in Holland.
Organizers of the UK’s biennial Farnborough International Air Show (to be held July 19 to 25) have signed up several major exhibitors for the event’s new Business Aircraft Park, with some manufacturers including regional airliners in its separate static display area alongside their executive transports.
Airbus remains tight-lipped on the subject of what it calls the A380 “Flying Palace,” but that hasn’t kept rumors from swirling or designers from developing proposals for a cabin on two levels with some 6,800 sq ft of living space.
When Airbus tentatively entered the corporate jet market a decade ago with the ACJ, its expectations for the airplane were modest. Success would be measured in single-digit sales primarily to wealthy individuals in the Middle East who dreamed of creating miniature flying palaces.
The business jet market is doing well at the moment, with deliveries forecast to reach an all-time annual high of 1,200 by next year, but analysts at the 12th annual Corporate Aircraft Transactions conference, held July 19 and 20 in New York, fear that supply could outpace demand and lead to a market downturn.