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A380 - the best is yet to come

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A380 - the best is yet to come

Old 31st Jul 2018, 19:04
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Originally Posted by BAengineer View Post
I must admit I was thinking the same. There doesn't seem to be anything on the horizon that is going to change the perception of the market towards the A380 in the foreseable. Even Airbus would kill it off if it were not for EK.
Well, we can't really tell. Another way of looking at it is that Airbus know that Emirates are too deeply committed to the A380 to be able to walk away from it just like that, and are prepared to leverage that position to make Emirates pay to keep it alive instead of bearing that cost themselves. Ultimately it's all a game of bluff.

A world economic boom would possibly increase the demand for an airframe like the A380. The aircraft can still be ordered, and if that remains the case all the way to the next upturn in the economy that could (and I must emphatically point out that I've not used the word "would"!) leave Airbus sitting pretty whilst Boeing fail to persuade anyone that their tiny little 777 is worth a dime. I exaggerate purely for effect...

I've occasionally wondered (flights of fancy, etc) just how committed to the A380 Emirates actually are. It's clear they'd prefer a NEOised version, but can't persuade Airbus / RR to do it. This is understandable, especially given RR's current difficulties; they've got to clear their current problem backlog before they commence yet another program. However, I'm wondering if Emirates would ever consider buying a controlling (or sufficiently large) stake in Airbus / RR to force the issue. The combined market capitalisation of both Airbus and Rolls Royce is currently somewhere about the $124billion (I think that's right in US$). Say Dubai spent, what, $40billion buying big stakes. Dubai could probably afford that. Would that be enough for Emirate to be able to "insist" a NEO is done? Is $40bill worth it if it means that they can continue their goal of global dominance of the long haul market by guaranteeing supply of the aircraft large enough and efficient enough to do it?

Like I said, a flight of fancy, but then by ordering so many already they've already demonstrated a willingness to bet pretty big sums.
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Old 31st Jul 2018, 19:49
  #182 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Tommy Gavin View Post
Has anyone done a study on an A380 Combi? Pax on the upper deck and cargo on the 2 lower decks? KLM still uses combi’s on certain routes if I am correct.
Might also be interesting as a “troopcarrier” for the armed forces?
Re troop carrier, likely too big and vulnerable plus I guess field restrictive.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 05:21
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Originally Posted by msbbarratt View Post
I've occasionally wondered (flights of fancy, etc) just how committed to the A380 Emirates actually are. It's clear they'd prefer a NEOised version, but can't persuade Airbus / RR to do it. This is understandable, especially given RR's current difficulties; they've got to clear their current problem backlog before they commence yet another program. However, I'm wondering if Emirates would ever consider buying a controlling (or sufficiently large) stake in Airbus / RR to force the issue. The combined market capitalisation of both Airbus and Rolls Royce is currently somewhere about the $124billion (I think that's right in US$). Say Dubai spent, what, $40billion buying big stakes. Dubai could probably afford that. Would that be enough for Emirate to be able to "insist" a NEO is done? Is $40bill worth it if it means that they can continue their goal of global dominance of the long haul market by guaranteeing supply of the aircraft large enough and efficient enough to do it?

Like I said, a flight of fancy, but then by ordering so many already they've already demonstrated a willingness to bet pretty big sums.
$40B for 200 frames is 200M per copy of equity, plus the actual cost of the airplane. They might as well buy a fleet of F-35s for that kind of money. Emirates have a large fleet of 380s because DXB is a pair of dependent parallels and there are strict slot controls, so 380s are the only way to get the necessary capacity on a finite number of operations. (More 380s also means more bodies passing through Dubai Duty Free on their transits, which is a not-insignificant part of the business model.)

Once DWC comes along, capacity constraints will be relieved on one side of the equation. They'll still need 380s for high-capacity or prestige routes to other at-capacity airports (the LHRs and CDGs of the world), but they'd probably much rather fly X+1 779s rather than X 38Ns to a given destination.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 08:31
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Originally Posted by msbbarratt View Post
Well, we can't really tell. Another way of looking at it is that Airbus know that Emirates are too deeply committed to the A380 to be able to walk away from it just like that, and are prepared to leverage that position to make Emirates pay to keep it alive instead of bearing that cost themselves. Ultimately it's all a game of bluff.

A world economic boom would possibly increase the demand for an airframe like the A380. The aircraft can still be ordered, and if that remains the case all the way to the next upturn in the economy that could (and I must emphatically point out that I've not used the word "would"!) leave Airbus sitting pretty whilst Boeing fail to persuade anyone that their tiny little 777 is worth a dime. I exaggerate purely for effect...

I've occasionally wondered (flights of fancy, etc) just how committed to the A380 Emirates actually are. It's clear they'd prefer a NEOised version, but can't persuade Airbus / RR to do it. This is understandable, especially given RR's current difficulties; they've got to clear their current problem backlog before they commence yet another program. However, I'm wondering if Emirates would ever consider buying a controlling (or sufficiently large) stake in Airbus / RR to force the issue. The combined market capitalisation of both Airbus and Rolls Royce is currently somewhere about the $124billion (I think that's right in US$). Say Dubai spent, what, $40billion buying big stakes. Dubai could probably afford that. Would that be enough for Emirate to be able to "insist" a NEO is done? Is $40bill worth it if it means that they can continue their goal of global dominance of the long haul market by guaranteeing supply of the aircraft large enough and efficient enough to do it?

Like I said, a flight of fancy, but then by ordering so many already they've already demonstrated a willingness to bet pretty big sums.
Today EK is not only committed to the 380, they are stuck with it. Stuck because no one can persuade AB to throw good taxpayer money after the wasted one and develop the aircraft into something affordable and profitable without huge taxpayer discount. Without the latter the 380 would not squirt one sound and without EK's cancellation of 70 (good and now dearly missed) 350ies to the benefit of 40 RR-380ies, RR would have gone broke. In exchange Tim Clark got his "Sir" and HH of Dubai was re-allowed running his horses at Ascot.
Considering all that it seems crystal clear that EK themselves would never ever throw up one dirham to "persuade" AB to build a NEO, TC would just continue to "demand" it and pronounce all other airline managers fools because they do not order the 380.
Dubai buying some stakes at AB? Buying means having money in the first place and if anyone pretends that Dubai could "afford" that, they probably have not set foot and lived in the sandpit lately.
It is actually neither the loving and tweeting passengers (or diligently writing "fans" on here), nor the "proud" operator(s) who will finally decide on the fate of the 380. It is built with an enormous infusion of European tax-money, can most probably never ever be profitable, so its life depends entirely on the willingness of the EU partners to subsidise it eternally for the sake of jobs, share value and pride.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 08:36
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Would someone care to enlighten me as to how the levels of comfort, noise and smoothness of the A350 stack up against the Boeing 777 competition?
They are wolds apart. A350 is significantly more quiet, there is no engine vibration on the A350 while on the 777 and 787 you can strongly feel it if seated close to them (it is enough to make the cutlery on your plate rattle...). In gusty weather the yaw damper fights hard on the 77W, have not experienced it in the recent years, maybe they also improved the design? I remember a flight some 10 years ago where the forward cabin did constant lateral oscillations after each gust which shook me in my seat for hours. No service on that flight, FAs remained seated.
Most of my A380 landings were hard, read about it in some forums as well, might be purely accidental. Otherwise the A380 is great to fly, smooooth and quiet. Size matters.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 09:01
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Originally Posted by Volume View Post
They are wolds apart. A350 is significantly more quiet, there is no engine vibration on the A350 while on the 777 and 787 you can strongly feel it if seated close to them (it is enough to make the cutlery on your plate rattle...). In gusty weather the yaw damper fights hard on the 77W, have not experienced it in the recent years, maybe they also improved the design? I remember a flight some 10 years ago where the forward cabin did constant lateral oscillations after each gust which shook me in my seat for hours. No service on that flight, FAs remained seated.
Most of my A380 landings were hard, read about it in some forums as well, might be purely accidental. Otherwise the A380 is great to fly, smooooth and quiet. Size matters.
Turbulence is quite subjective and no two flights are the same. The fact I've had several 777 flights that were perfectly smooth and very nice is no counterpoint, because I simply haven't been on them enough.

It's not size that gives a smooth ride per se. It's mass and wing loading.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 09:19
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A350 and 787 load alleviation systems are more modern it seems.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 13:40
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Originally Posted by Less Hair View Post
A350 and 787 load alleviation systems are more modern it seems.
And the 777X's new wing and control system will be even "more modern."
It's not size that gives a smooth ride per se. It's mass and wing loading.
Driving wing loading up smooths the flight, but kills efficiency. 777X will have a larger wing to reduce wing loading and improve efficiency. Will that result in a worse ride? Maybe. Maybe not. That depends on how flexible the new composite wing is and how effective the active gust load alleviation system is

Will 777X be noisier? Maybe. Maybe not. The 777X has the same external diameter but larger internal diameter resulting from thinner sidewalls with thinner insulation. That portends a noisy cabin. But the new insulation is supposed to be much more effective than the old insulation, resulting in an allegedly quieter cabin. Boeing has also been working on active cabin noise cancellation systems, so maybe they'll add that. What we do know is that like the 787 the windows will be larger, the cabin altitude lower, the ceiling higher and more "spacious", and the cabin humidity higher. We'll have to wait and see how all this stacks up against the A380 and A350 for overall comfort.

Last edited by KenV; 1st Aug 2018 at 14:11.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 13:50
  #189 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by msbbarratt View Post

A world economic boom would possibly increase the demand for an airframe like the A380. The aircraft can still be ordered, and if that remains the case all the way to the next upturn in the economy that could (and I must emphatically point out that I've not used the word "would"!) leave Airbus sitting pretty whilst Boeing fail to persuade anyone that their tiny little 777 is worth a dime. I exaggerate purely for effect...
We have had a world economic boom for the last 10 years - we are overdue a downturn. If there is a downturn then aircraft sales are going to be hit (along with everything else) and an aircraft that is only profitable on specific routes and which has hardly any used market value would be a brave purchase for any CFO.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 15:01
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HiFly A380 chartered by Ving to bring Norwegian tourists home from Mallorca. It has its uses.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 15:12
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HiFly are an interesting business, most of their fleet is made up of A340's which was another aircraft type that airlines found uneconomic to operate and couldn't give away. I suppose if you can buy the airframes cheap enough then you can make a profit out of anything - not so sure that is a great market for Airbus though.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 15:28
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And the 777X's new wing and control system will be even "more modern."
It will be maily a "copy and paste" of the 787 while keeping some cockpit commonality with the classic 777s, so it will most probably not be "more modern".

It's not size that gives a smooth ride per se. It's mass and wing loading.
Not entirely. It is also a matter of structural stiffness and resonance frequencies. Many single gusts result in a fading oscilation of the airframe, so you get an "echo" of each gust as the structural answer of the airframe.
Anybody who has flown in the forward end of the MD-11 can tell about the effect of a long fuselage with a heavy mass on one end...
As there is plenty of aerodynamic damping on the wing, mainly the fuselage stiffness drives this behaviour. Wing stiffness however determines how hard single gusts hit the cabin.

The A380 fuselage is short and high, it is enourmously stiff in vertical bending, hence almost no resonance (frequency is mucht to high).
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 15:28
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Originally Posted by msbbarratt View Post
Well, we can't really tell. Another way of looking at it is that Airbus know that Emirates are too deeply committed to the A380 to be able to walk away from it just like that, and are prepared to leverage that position to make Emirates pay to keep it alive instead of bearing that cost themselves. Ultimately it's all a game of bluff.

A world economic boom would possibly increase the demand for an airframe like the A380. The aircraft can still be ordered, and if that remains the case all the way to the next upturn in the economy that could (and I must emphatically point out that I've not used the word "would"!) leave Airbus sitting pretty whilst Boeing fail to persuade anyone that their tiny little 777 is worth a dime. I exaggerate purely for effect...

I've occasionally wondered (flights of fancy, etc) just how committed to the A380 Emirates actually are. It's clear they'd prefer a NEOised version, but can't persuade Airbus / RR to do it. This is understandable, especially given RR's current difficulties; they've got to clear their current problem backlog before they commence yet another program. However, I'm wondering if Emirates would ever consider buying a controlling (or sufficiently large) stake in Airbus / RR to force the issue. The combined market capitalisation of both Airbus and Rolls Royce is currently somewhere about the $124billion (I think that's right in US$). Say Dubai spent, what, $40billion buying big stakes. Dubai could probably afford that. Would that be enough for Emirate to be able to "insist" a NEO is done? Is $40bill worth it if it means that they can continue their goal of global dominance of the long haul market by guaranteeing supply of the aircraft large enough and efficient enough to do it?

Like I said, a flight of fancy, but then by ordering so many already they've already demonstrated a willingness to bet pretty big sums.

The 2008 financial crisis ended long ago, the global world economy has been doing well for a while now. Except for the silly potential trade wars that Trump is threatening us with. But overall the economy is doing very well as signified by rising interest rates. We should in fact expect another recession in 2019/2020 so A380 seems to be doomed based on your analysis.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 15:32
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Originally Posted by BAengineer View Post
HiFly are an interesting business, most of their fleet is made up of A340's which was another aircraft type that airlines found uneconomic to operate and couldn't give away..
And like the A380 the A340 is a four engine aircraft competing against twins. Failure to learn a lesson?

Last edited by KenV; 1st Aug 2018 at 15:46.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 15:35
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Originally Posted by Foxdeux View Post
The 2008 financial crisis ended long ago, the global world economy has been doing well for a while now. Except for the silly potential trade wars that Trump is threatening us with.
Not to turn this into a jet blast thread, but the EU blinked and are negotiating with Trump. Trade war averted.
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 15:45
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Originally Posted by Volume View Post
It (wing) will be maily a "copy and paste" of the 787 while keeping some cockpit commonality with the classic 777s, so it will most probably not be "more modern".
You appear to have gotten that backwards. The 777X cockpit is based on the 787 cockpit. The 777X wing is quite different from 787 wing and is designed and built in Seattle, unlike 787 wing which is Japanese.[/QUOTE]
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Old 1st Aug 2018, 18:46
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Originally Posted by KenV View Post
Not to turn this into a jet blast thread, but the EU blinked and are negotiating with Trump. Trade war averted.
Trade war averted for now. I'm not anti/pro-Trump but he makes these threats which gets everyone riled up, then decides not to go through with it, making him look like a hero.
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Old 2nd Aug 2018, 04:58
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Originally Posted by KenV View Post
You appear to have gotten that backwards. The 777X cockpit is based on the 787 cockpit. The 777X wing is quite different from 787 wing and is designed and built in Seattle, unlike 787 wing which is Japanese.
To elaborate a bit, Boeing is actually grafting the 787 flight deck (Section 41 in Boeing lingo) onto the 777X (in much the same way the 767 flight deck was used on the original 777). I suspect there will be some changes to improve commonality of the 'X' flight deck with the original, but make no mistake, it's a 787 flight deck.
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Old 2nd Aug 2018, 08:34
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That´s what I said. The 777X will not be "more modern" than a 787, it will be a 787 with some 777 tradition to ease certification as a derivative and cross-qualification of the crew.
Both designs, the classic 777 and the 787 performed very well (in that respect), why change further ?
It is not like in the late 80s, when the A320 FBW design was revolutionary, and Boeing was forced to improve their designs. There is no revolution on the A350, so no need to react. Except maybe for passenger comfort...

There especially was no revolution on the A380. In hindsight that might be one of the big issues why this tread is existing at all. If Airbus would have been ready to do the A380 in full composites or with a more efficient folding wing, would it have made a difference? I think nobody can tell. There is always a good reason to not reinvent the wheel every time. What seems to have failed is the idea, that staying with a relatively conventional design for the A380 would allow to develop it quickly and to sell it cheap...
It is interesting to see, that the A380 wing is the exact opposite of the 787/777X/A350 wing, aluminum spars and skins with composites ribs vs. Carbon fibre spars and skins with aluminum ribs. It is rare in aviation (and probably in most of the industry) that you have two products on the market which are exactly opposite. Typically this shows that both are not the optimum...

The 777X wing is quite different from 787 wing and is designed and built in Seattle, unlike 787 wing which is Japanese.
Here's the 777X wing secret: It's just a longer 787 Dreamliner wing
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Old 2nd Aug 2018, 09:22
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Originally Posted by Volume
Most of my A380 landings were hard
Not sure why. The 380 is an incredibly easy aeroplane to land smoothly without really trying. Maybe wet runways and your pilots wanted to ensure positive wheel spin up?
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