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AIRBUS A-380-800

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A388 /
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Name A-380-800
Manufacturer AIRBUS
Body Wide
Wing Fixed Wing
Position Low wing
Tail Regular tail, mid set
WTC Heavy
Type code L4J
Aerodrome Reference Code 4F
RFF Category 10
Engine Jet
Engine count Multi
Position Underwing mounted
Landing gear Tricycle retractable
Mass group 5

Manufacturered as:

AIRBUS A-380-800
AIRBUS Prestige (A-380-800)
AIRBUS A-380-800 Prestige

AIRBUS A-380-800

AIRBUS A-380-800 AIRBUS A-380-800 3D


A380-800 is the first true double-deck passenger airliner for the long-range market, while the A380-800F cargo version is to be the first commercial freighter with three full cargo decks. Maximum cruising speed Mach 0.88 and can reach FL350 in 28 minutes as initial cruise altitude. The 555-seat aircraft uses the same cockpit layout and operating procedures as the Airbus A320 and A330/A340 Families, ensuring that pilots qualified on other Airbus fly-by-wire aircraft can step into the A380 with minimal additional training. First flight in April 2005.

Technical Data

Wing span 79.75 m261.647 ft <br />
Length 72.72 m238.583 ft <br />
Height 24.09 m79.035 ft <br />
Powerplant 4 x R-R Trent 900 (311kN) or GP7200.
Engine model Engine Alliance GP7000, Rolls-Royce Trent 900

Performance Data

Take-Off Initial Climb
(to 5000 ft)
Initial Climb
(to FL150)
Initial Climb
(to FL240)
MACH Climb Cruise Initial Descent
(to FL240)
(to FL100)
Descent (FL100
& below)
V2 (IAS) 150 kts IAS 190 kts IAS 240 kts IAS 240 kts MACH 0.83 TAS 520 kts MACH 0.83 IAS 300 kts IAS 250 kts Vapp (IAS) 138 kts
Distance 2950 m ROC 1500 ft/min ROC 2500 ft/min ROC 1300 ft/min ROC 1000 ft/min MACH 0.85 ROD 1000 ft/min ROD 2000 ft/min MCS 230 kts Distance 2010 m
MTOW 560000560,000 kg <br />560 tonnes <br /> kg Ceiling FL430 ROD 1000 ft/min APC C
WTC H Range 85008,500 nm <br />15,742,000 m <br />15,742 km <br />51,646,981.665 ft <br /> NM

Accidents & Serious Incidents involving A388

  • A388, Changi Singapore, 2008 (On 10 January 2008, an Airbus A380 was damaged during push back at Singapore Changi International airport when the aircraft right wing undercarriage became stuck in soft ground adjacent to the taxiway.)
  • A388, en-route Batam Island Indonesia, 2010 (On 4 November 2010, a Qantas Airbus A380 climbing out of Singapore experienced a sudden and uncontained failure of one of its Rolls Royce Trent 900 engines which caused considerable collateral damage to the airframe and some of the aircraft systems. A ‘PAN’ was declared and after appropriate crew responses including aircraft controllability checks, the aircraft returned to Singapore. The root cause of the failure was found to have been an undetected component manufacturing fault. The complex situation which resulted from the failure in flight was found to have exceeded the currently anticipated secondary damage from such an event.)
  • A388, en-route, Bay of Bengal India, 2019 (On 10 July 2019 an Airbus A380 in the cruise at night at FL 400 encountered unexpectedly severe turbulence approximately 13 hours into the 17 hour flight and 27 occupants were injured as a result, one seriously. The detailed Investigation concluded that the turbulence had occurred in clear air in the vicinity of a significant area of convective turbulence and a jet stream. A series of findings were related to both better detection of turbulence risks and ways to minimise injuries if unexpectedly encountered with particular reference to the aircraft type and operator but with wider relevance.)
  • A388, en-route, Wyoming USA, 2020 (On 2 February 2020, an Airbus A380 in the cruise at night at FL 330 encountered unforecast clear air turbulence with the seatbelt signs off and one unsecured passenger in a standard toilet compartment sustained a serious injury as a result. The Investigation noted that relevant airline policies and crew training had been in place but also observed a marked difference in the availability of handholds in toilet compartments provided for passengers with disabilities or other special needs and those in all other such compartments and made a corresponding safety recommendation to standardise and placard handhold provision in all toilet compartments.)
  • A388, en-route, north east of Singapore, 2011 (On 31 January 2011, a Singapore Airlines Airbus A380-800 was in the cruise when there was sudden loud noise and signs of associated electrical smoke and potential burning in a toilet compartment with a corresponding ECAM smoke alert. After a fire extinguisher had been discharged into the apparent source, there were no further signs of fire or smoke. Subsequent investigation found signs of burning below the toilet floor and it was concluded that excessive current caused by a short circuit which had resulted from a degraded cable had been the likely cause, with over current protection limiting the damage caused by overheating.)
  • A388, en-route, northern Afghanistan, 2014 (On 5 January 2014, an Airbus A380-800 en route to Singapore at night made an emergency descent and diversion to Baku after a loss of cabin pressure without further event. The Investigation attributed the pressure loss to a fatigue crack in a door skin which was initiated due to a design issue with door Cover Plates, which had not been detected when the Cover Plate was replaced with an improved one eighteen months earlier. Safety Issues related to cabin crew use of emergency oxygen and diversions to aerodromes with a fire category less than that normally required were also identified.)
  • A388, en-route, southeast of Mumbai India, 2014 (On 18 October 2014, an Airbus A380 descending at night over north east India unexpectedly encountered what was subsequently concluded as likely to have been Clear Air Turbulence after diverting around convective weather. Although seat belt signs were already on, a flight deck instruction to cabin crew to be seated because of the onset of intermittent light to moderate turbulence was completed only seconds before the sudden occurrence of a short period of severe turbulence. Two unrestrained passengers and two of the cabin crew sustained serious injuries. There were other minor injuries and also some cabin trim impact damage.)
  • A388, en-route, southwest Greenland, 2017 (On 30 September 2017, an Airbus A380-800 en-route over Greenland suffered a sudden explosive uncontained failure of the number 4 engine shortly after thrust was increased to adjust the cruise level to FL 370. Following recovery of a crucial piece of ejected debris, the Investigation was able to determine that the failure was attributable to a specific type of fatigue failure within a titanium alloy used in the manufacture of the engine fan hub. This risk had not been identifiable during manufacture or in-service and had not been recognised by the engine manufacturer or during the engine certification process.)
  • A388, vicinity Moscow Domodedovo Russia, 2017 (On 10 September 2017, an Airbus A380-800 cleared for an ILS approach at Moscow Domodedovo in visual daylight conditions descended below its cleared altitude and reached 395 feet agl whilst still 7nm from the landing runway threshold with a resultant EGPWS ‘PULL UP’ warning. Recovery was followed by an inadequately prepared second approach which was discontinued and then a third approach to a landing. The Investigation attributed the crew’s difficulties primarily to failure to follow various routine operating procedures relating to use of automation but noted that there had been scope for better presentation of some of these procedures.)
  • A388/A320, vicinity Frankfurt Germany, 2011 (On 13 December 2011, an Airbus 320 was allowed to depart from runway 25C at Frankfurt on a left turning SID just prior to the touchdown of an A380 on runway 25L. The A380 had then initiated a low go around which put it above, ahead of and parallel to the A320 with a closest proximity of 1nm / 200 ft, in breach of the applicable wake vortex separation minima of 7nm / 1000ft. The Investigation found that there had been no actual encounter with the A380 wake vortices but that systemic ATC operational risk management was inadequate.)
  • B789 / A388, Singapore, 2017 (On 30 March 2017, a Boeing 787 taxiing for departure at night at Singapore was involved in a minor collision with a stationary Airbus A380 which had just been pushed back from its gate and was also due to depart. The Investigation found that the conflict occurred because of poor GND controlling by a supervised trainee and had occurred because the 787 crew had exercised insufficient prudence when faced with a potential conflict with the A380. Safety Recommendations made were predominantly related to ATC procedures where it was considered that there was room for improvement in risk management.)
  • CL60 / A388, en-route, Arabian Sea, 2017 (On 7 January 2017, the crew of a Bombardier Challenger en route at FL340 over international waters between India and the Arabian Peninsula temporarily lost control of their aircraft approximately one minute after an Airbus A380 had passed 1,000 feet above them tracking in the opposite direction. The Investigation is ongoing but has noted that both aircraft were in compliance with their air traffic clearances, that a major height loss occurred during loss of control with some occupants sustaining serious injuries and that after successfully diverting, the structure of the aircraft was found to have been damaged beyond economic repair.)

Further Reading