Airbus A380 lands in Hyderabad for display at aviation expo

October 16th, 2008 - 8:58 pm ICT by IANS  

Hyderabad, Oct 16 (IANS) The world’s largest aircraft Airbus A380 landed at Begumpet Airport here for static display at the ongoing India Aviation-2008, the country’s first conference and exhibition on civil aviation, as Airbus officials said the aircraft was ideal for India.India’s Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel received the aircraft that flew in here from the company’s headquarters in Toulouse, France.

Airbus chief operating officer (customers) Johny Leahy, who arrived by the A380, said the aircraft was designed for India and it moves more people with lower fuel consumption, lower cost and less impact on environment.

“The A380 can also take off from and land at airports of all sizes and on shorter runways than previous generation large aircraft, which makes it an ideal aircraft for Indian carriers,” he said.

With a seating capacity of 525 in a standard three-class layout, A380 is the ideal equipment to alleviate traffic congestion at busy airports, while coping with the growth, Leahy said.

“This is a difficult time for the aviation industry worldwide but this is India’s decade and more people are flying in India than ever before. I think this is the time for India to expand,” he said at a ceremony near the aircraft.

Patel said Air India would also look at acquisition of such bigger airplanes to move people with lesser aircraft movement.

“I will be very happy that in the years to come such aircraft are also acquired by Indian carriers, Kingfisher being first of the customers for the A380. What is required today is bigger, quieter and environment-friendly planes which precisely A380 is,” he said.

Leahy later told a news conference that the company had orders and commitments for 202 such aircraft from 17 customers while eight aircraft were already in service. Kingfisher has placed orders for five A380s.

He said the world needs more A380s as the number of cities with over 10 million population has gone up to 26 from four in 1970. The number will go up to 33 in 2015.

Leahy claimed A380 was the first aircraft to consume 2.9 litres of fuel per passenger per 100 km while the average fuel consumption by other aircraft is five litres per passenger per km.

Airbus plans to deliver 12 A380s during the current year while the target for the next year would be 20 aircraft.

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