Airbus is proposing an enhanced A380, the “A380plus” to offer airline better economics on the giant jet.
The study includes aerodynamic improvements in particular new, large winglets and other wing refinements that allow for up to 4 per cent fuel burn savings.
Added to an optimized A380 maintenance program and the enhanced cabin features first shown at Aircraft Interiors Expo in April, the overall benefit is a 13 per cent cost per seat reduction versus today’s A380.
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John Leahy, Airbus COO Customers, explains: “The A380plus is an efficient way to offer even better economics and improved operational performance at the same time.”
“It is a new step for our iconic aircraft to best serve worldwide fast-growing traffic and the evolving needs of the A380 customers. The A380 is well-proven as the solution to increasing congestion at large airports, and in offering a unique, passenger-preferred experience.”
The new winglets measure approximately 4,7 metres in height (an uplet of 3.5m, and a downlet of 1,2m). It is designed to improve aerodynamics and reduce drag.
The optimized cabin layout presented at Aircraft Interiors Expo, allows up to 80 additional seats but with a 9-abreast seat configuration in premium economy and 11-abreast in economy.
The A380plus features longer maintenance check intervals, a reduced six-year check downtime, and systems improvements, which will reduce maintenance costs and increase aircraft availability.