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back to article Airbus delivers first A380

Airbus this morning delivered its first A380 to Singapore Airlines ahead of the aircraft's maiden commercial flight on 25 October. The long-awaited hand over took place at the Airbus Delivery Centre in Toulouse. Airbus president and CEO Tom Enders told the 500-odd people at today's ceremony: "This is a landmark day for all …

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Wiring!!

El Reg keeps reporting 'Wiring' issue for the delay, but never points out thst this is a issue with the in-flight multimedia systems (that little screen in the back of the head rest in front of you) rather that the Flight Control Systems or other vital electrical system. Just thought I'd straighten that out.

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sardines

It's bad enough being crammed 400+ in a 747, who in their right mind wants to be one of 800 people flying in a tin can for 12 hours? Time to strike singapore airlines off the preferred airline list...

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Not quite sardines

Singapore airlines are not going for the 800+ seat arrangement but has said they will use the space to have a 'beyond first class' section.

In fact according to recent press reports, none of the announced orders so far are using the space as an excuse to squeeze people in but to provide lounge areas and the like.

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Paris Hilton

RE: Sardines...

400 or 800 - you're still only going to potentially 'next' to about 8 people. And from what I've seen, you're still only going to have to hurdle about 2 other people in your row to get to the isle. I suppose it does increase the risk of one of your fellow passengers being Paris Hilton, but there is still that potential in the crappiest of 737's.

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I'll wait

until at least service pack 2 before getting on either of them!

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@steve

853 people in a 100% economy configuration (never likely to happen), 525 in a 3 class system, 471 with 12 "I can't last 12 hours without a wank" suites upstairs.

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@steve

Its possible to go 12 hours without a wank?!!? You speak lies!!!

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@Joe

Ahhh thanks for clarifying that Joe, for a while I’ve been pondering what the ‘wiring issues’ were related to. I had started to think it was something to do with the ILS approach systems or something important when all along it’s just to do with the in flight entertainment systems!

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The real reason behind the delays

Was down to, depending on which side of the road you fall, the inability or the deliberate disabling of the new version of CAD software to be backwards compatible with what Airbus have used in the past.

Dassault systems have provided Airbus with Catia V4 for years and for the A380 project, they took on V5 for certain parts of the design, including electrical harnessing (bad idea). V5 is not as adept as its' predecessor when handling this element of design, this is then also compunded by it not being able to read files from V4.

They're partnered by IBM, so perhaps that explains a few things.

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Paris Hilton

@Nick

"...it does increase the risk of one of your fellow passengers being Paris Hilton..."

At least if this happens you know you won't be short of elbow room?

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Delays

Nor has El Reg made much light of the fact that nearly all of the initial delays to the project were caused because they were designing the plane using computer running Linux. As soon as they reverted back to a Spectrum 128, the problems were resolved. The IT manager for Airbus was quoted as saying "it comes down to usability. Once we went Spectrum we were able to use an interface which was much more friendly than that of Linux. And we could save money by sacking half of the speccy nerds we had to employ just to support it in the first place."

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Dead Vulture

Sardines

I wouldn't mind being one of the 800 so long as each one of us has more room than in a 747. I don't really give a monkey's how many passengers there are in total, just that there are enough doors to cope with them and enough room for my leggy wegs.

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Virgin Space Territory

I say, Chris, what a spiffing good idea...... a First Class High Flying Brothel and Casino to get you ..."In the m00d".

And all done in the best possible taste, off shore and out of sight and out of mind and out of this Wwworld...... for a Real Dreamliner XXXXPerience/Adult Psychotic Episode....... hush, hush, of course... and not for the faint hearted.

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Anonymous Coward

Bar, gym, swimming pool, tennis courts, pitch n' putt...

Have they included all those fabulous concepts they always say they're going to in the early publicity?

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@sardines and @delays

Steve, Steve, Steve, you've fallen for the claptrap, haven't you.

Not a SINGLE AIRLINE on the order book for the A380 has indicated an 800 seat configuration, they are all around the 500 seat mark for more comfort.

The only thing true about the 800 seat figure is that it is theoretical, that it is in a single-class 'cattle class' layout (i.e. pile 'em high and sell 'em cheap).

Jeeez. As for the delays, there was an issue with the aluminium use in the cabling (i.e. alu cables instead of copper) to save weight. What they didn't realise is that aluminium is not as bendy as copper is, requiring a change in some of the wiring harnesses to avoid fractures. Go figure.

But hey, good for Airbus. Now that the first one is out the door, they can only learn and improve from there.

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Airbus delivers 1st A380 in .... Toulouse

Bit like when you buy a Vauxhall then... you need to collect your A380 at the dealership... with empty tank(s) I presume...

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Environmentally friendly...!

Of course, when they say the aircraft is the most environmentally friendly available, they use "emissions per passenger". And how many passengers do they count? Ah, yes... that'll be the 800+ that no-one is accommodating...

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Wishful thinking ......

Could one of these in 800 seat formation land safetly at Edinburgh ?

If so, could you send one up for the Scottish labour party ?

800 seats should about do it, don't care where it lands .....

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Boffin

Might want to remember the cargo version....

Thanks to the bungling of Airbus they lost a good sized order for cargo carrying 380s. Apparently FedEx didin't like being mucked about.

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Stu
Alert

Great news about the delivery!

Cabling woes eh . . .

Discovery channel did a TV program about the A380 development, and the lead tail fin (or whatever) designer was beeped from saying 'merde' several times during an attempt to fit the forward facing external camera, mounted on the tail fin - the cables were too short to connect to the camera!

Hilarious!

Of course to fix something as little as that, you would probably have to fix about a hundred or so other wiring arrangements!

After years of experience, how could they not realise during design!?

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Jobs Halo

It's the CAD system

Having worked in the industry I can say that CAD apps are lagging far behind what today's workstations (and large scale engineering projects) are capable of.

Catia really blows. Although there aren't a lot of CAD systems that can handle a model the size of an A380, which is sad in itself.

The only thing that can possible save the industry is if iWork 09 includes and aerospace quality CAD system running on Mac OS X. Then designing an A380 would be as easy as syncing your iPod.

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@Anonymous Coward

You really believe that an airline is going to spend all that money to fly 100 more people in more comfort? They'll cram 'em in.

They may not get to 800, but the only people who'll see any improvement are those above economy class, where sadly my company won't pay for tickets :( Those of us in the cattle class cabin won't see any improvement, and we'll have even more people in front of us at immigration and baggage claim. I got bumped to United "Economy Plus" last week. Whoopee, 3 more inches legroom, same crap seats and grub, and thank goodness one of the people beside me was petite. Still wasn't enough elbow room for a wank even if I'd felt so inclined... Roll on the Dreamliner.

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Coat

How many in the Ryan Air config?

800 in the fuselage, and another 200 in the cargo hold?

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Coat

How many in the Ryan Air config?

800 in the fuselage, and another 200 in the cargo hold?

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Coat

sooo...

...How many does the Indian version hold? 1600 with external handholds?

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Anonymous Coward

SolidWorks on my Nokia

"The only thing that can possible save the industry is if iWork 09 includes and aerospace quality CAD system running on Mac OS X. Then designing an A380 would be as easy as syncing your iPod."

that's both of us out of a job, then...

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@Steve

Guess what Steve... Anonymous Coward was right. The BBC reports the following:

The Airbus A380 can carry more than 850 passengers, but Singapore Airlines has opted for just 471 seats, divided into economy, business class and special suites.

See the complete gallery at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/shared/spl/hi/picture_gallery/07/business_first_airbus_a380_delivered/html/1.stm

And the economy class seating looks just like a standard Jumbo layout (3-4-3 nd 2-4-2) with improved seats (including at-seat power which is usually reserved for Business Class and higher). And the 'new Economy' class on the A380 and the B777 has better seat pitch.

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Unhappy

Eventually it will carry closer to the 800 max

Sorry to say this, but those of us who can remember the launch of the 747 doubt very much that the airlines will continue to keep all these high-end features and the low passenger numbers. In the days leading up to the launch of the 747, we were promised lounges, bars, more room, etc. We all know that these features didn't last long.

I'd guess that Singapore Airlines will keep this configuration for a while, but as the novelty wears off, the back of the bus will be the back of the bus. First Class and Business will be fantastic, while cattle class will still be crap.

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Check in - 4 hours

These monster planes are going to be horrible. It's going to take soooooo long to get everyone on and off them and through passport control at either end. I haven't got the money for a "wank" cabin, so I'll be in the the sardines and waiting hours after landing to get off and join a queue that will take hours to get through.

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And the second one?

I remember the initial flight of the A380 well, proudly huddled over my laptop watching the feed live on the internet from Tolouse - only to discover that my wife was watching it live on Sky in far more comfort in the next room. I've always considered a metaphor for our relationship - she'll be up in Business while I struggle in Cattle.

That aside, I'm pleased to see the first A380 has finally been delivered but does anyone have any idea when the second one is going to turn up? As far as I can tell from media reports it won't be until next year, possibly February or March. Is four to five months from first to second a record or do all new aircraft go through a similar delivery cycle?

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Mile high club

The SQ 380 has first class suites - with doors - containing a private double bed. If you flash the cash for first, you don't have to attempt vigorous interpersonal integration in a the vertical orientation in a tiny smelly cubicle. I'm saving my air miles for a truly memorable flight of fantasy.

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