Airbus A380-800 Cutaway Poster
In 2010, Airbus announced a new A380-800 build standard incorporating a strengthened air frame structure and a 1.5 increase in wing twist. Airbus will also offer, as an option, an improved maximum take-off weight, thus providing a better payload/range performance. Maximum take-off weight is increased by 4 t (8, 800 lb), to 573 t (1, 263, 000 lb) and an additional 100 nautical miles (190 km) in range.
This is achieved by reducing flight loads, partly from optimising the fly-by-wire control laws. British Airways and Emirates are to be the first two customers to receive this new option in 2013. Vietnam Airlines has shown interest in the higher-weight variant.
In 2012, Airbus announced another increase in the A380's maximum take-off weight, to 575 t (1, 268, 000 lb), a 6t hike on the initial variant and 2t higher than the increased-weight proposal of 2010. It will stretch the range by some 150 nautical miles (280 km), taking its capability to around 8, 350 nautical miles (15, 460 km) at current payloads. The higher-weight version would be offered for introduction to service early in 2013.
The Airbus A380 is a double-deck, wide-body, four-engine jet airliner manufactured by Airbus. It is the world's largest passenger airliner, and many airports have upgraded their facilities to accommodate it because of its size. It was initially named Airbus A3XX; Airbus designed the aircraft to challenge Boeing's monopoly in the large-aircraft market. The A380 made its first flight on 27 April 2005 and entered commercial service in October 2007 with Singapore Airlines.
The A380's upper deck extends along the entire length of the fuselage, with a width equivalent to a wide-body aircraft. This gives the A380-800's cabin 478 square metres (5, 145.1 sq ft) of floor space, which is 40% more than the next-largest airliner, the Boeing 747-8, and provides seating for 525 people in a typical three-class configuration or up to 853 people in an all-economy class configuration. The A380-800 has a design range of 15, 700 kilometres (8, 500 nmi; 9, 800 mi), sufficient to fly nonstop from Dubai to Los Angeles, and a cruising speed of Mach 0.85 (about 900 km/h, 560 mph or 490 kn at cruising altitude).
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