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A343 Range Versus A346 Range  
User currently offlineAguilo From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 243 posts, RR: 0
Posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 3087 times:

Is there really a big difference in range between the A343 and the A346?

I recently flew LHR to CPT on Virgin Atlantic and was surprised that they were using a A343 on the route. Also surprised that the A343 had the range for such a long (12 hour) flight, especially on the even longer return.

SAA flies ATL nonstop to CPT with an A346, but then on the south to north return the flight has to make 2 stops before arriving in ATL. Does anyone know if this is a necessary fuelstop because even the mighty A346 doesn't have the range for the longer south to north return (yes, I know the A345 has a longer range than the A346) or are the stops more of a "business necessity" to pickup extra passengers, but not necessarily more fuel?

Thanks in advance for the input!

21 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineQ330 From Australia, joined Dec 2003, 1460 posts, RR: 22
Reply 1, posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 3006 times:

The A343 has a range of about 7200nm (7400nm for the -300E) as opposed to 7500nm for the A346. Not a huge difference.

-Q



Long live the A330!
User currently offlineAviationwiz From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 959 posts, RR: 4
Reply 2, posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 2992 times:

It depends on what day you were to fly with SAA. Sometimes they have non-stops from ATL-JNB, otherwise it's non-stop from ATL-CPT. Some days they have JNB-SID-ATL, other days they have CPT-SID-ATL. The only stop needed on the way up is SID. On the JFK route they do either JFK-JNB non-stop, or JFK-DKR-JNB (DKR to pick up pax.) on the way up, it is always a stop in DKR because that is needed as a fuel stop (and it makes a nice pick-up, drop-off for pax.)

In SID, all they have rights to do is re-fuel, in DKR, they have rights to load and unload pax. as well.

SID=Illoh Do Sal



Proudly from the Home of the Red Tail.
User currently offlineSailorOrion From Germany, joined Feb 2001, 2058 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 2991 times:

Range at maximum passenger payload (no cargo):

A330-200: 6650nm @ 253pax
A330-300: 5600nm @ 295pax (I think the "X" variant has some more)
A340-200: 8000nm @ 239pax
A340-300: 7300nm @ 295pax
A340-500: 8650nm @ 313pax
A340-600: 7500nm @ 380pax

SailorOrion


User currently offlineAguilo From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 243 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 2885 times:

Thanks everyone for the info - very helpful.

Does anyone know how I could find out what the distances between LHR to CPT (just curious for this one) and ATL to CPT are? I'd like to find out by how short the A343/346 fall in not being able to make the return trip to the US from Cape Town nonstop.

Also, I assume that reason that South to North and East to West trips are longer has to do with things such as the rotation of the earth, winds etc. But in the case of a flight from deep in the souther hemisphere like CPT up to the northern hemisphere like London or the US, what is the specific reason that these flights take longer to get back than the opposite trip heading down does?

Any thoughts?


User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 9395 posts, RR: 27
Reply 5, posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 2847 times:
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There ya go. The trips also have to do with the jetstream (high altitude winds) which flows from west to east. Hence BOS-LAX is around 45 minutes longer than LAX-BOS.

~Vik



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineAguilo From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 243 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 2807 times:

Thanks for that great resource VikkyVic and for the stats SailorOrion

Sure seems like on the ATL to CPT route that SAA flies with an A346 they sure are cutting it pretty close! (A346 range according to the Sailor is 7500nm and the ATL to CPT route is 7046nm - not much reserve left on that flight it seems)

Good thing CPT is small enough an airport to have probably never had a traffic delay, because the ATL flight doesn't seem like it could wait very long before it would have to come down.


User currently offlineGuyBetsy1 From Canada, joined Aug 2001, 838 posts, RR: 6
Reply 7, posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 2792 times:

Some airlines actually decrease their A346 capacity so that it has better range. eg Cathay Pacific's A346 only carry 286 passengers against Airbus recommendation of 380!

User currently offlineSailorOrion From Germany, joined Feb 2001, 2058 posts, RR: 6
Reply 8, posted (10 years 2 weeks 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 2711 times:

Still Air Distance under normal conditions is around 7700nm, so you need to leave some "stuff" at home.

GuyBetsy1: That's not necessarily because of the range, it might be due to other factors (for example size of F or C class), LH's B744 have around 340-390 passenges (there are 3 configs) and that's not because of the range.

SailorOrion


User currently offlineGigneil From United States of America, joined Nov 2002, 16345 posts, RR: 86
Reply 9, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 2544 times:

CPT-LHR, JNB-LHR are even well within the range of the 767-300ER.

The A340-300 is a reasonably long range aircraft... 7300nm is a far way.

N


User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 2429 times:

A340-200: 8000nm @ 239pax

No A342 in commercial service has anywhere near this amount of range.


User currently offlineYUL332LX From Canada, joined Feb 2004, 820 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 2329 times:

No A342 in commercial service has anywhere near this amount of range.

The A342 DOES have a range of 8000nm but no airlines currently operate the A342 on routes that require that kind of range.



E volavo, volavo felice più in alto del sole, e ancora più su mentre il mondo pian piano spariva lontano laggiù ...
User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 2286 times:

The A342 DOES have a range of 8000nm but no airlines currently operate the A342 on routes that require that kind of range.

Wrong.

Only a single aircraft built featured that range (formerly designated A340-8000... later A340-213X), and it never entered commercial service.

Some were later given similar upgrades, but still do not feature anywhere near that range.


User currently offlineAirxLiban From Lebanon, joined Oct 2003, 4504 posts, RR: 54
Reply 13, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 2237 times:

i believe royal jordanian has one of those A340-8000s though i do not believe that it is in commercial configuration.


PARIS, FRANCE...THE BEIRUT OF EUROPE.
User currently offlineAviationwiz From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 959 posts, RR: 4
Reply 14, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 2202 times:

Aguilo,

You are correct, because the amount of fuel that the flight uses, and the fact that they can't waste too much fuel on the ground in line, they generally give the SAA flights priority as to take-off's. I remember one night at JFK, we must have cut in front of a dozen planes (most larger 747, 767's, 777's) because we needed all the fuel we could get for the flight. The longest non-stop flight ever is ATL-JNB (which SAA currently operates on some days, the other days are ATL-CPT)



Proudly from the Home of the Red Tail.
User currently offlineThrust From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 2686 posts, RR: 10
Reply 15, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 2178 times:

Wow, this is one of the few times that bigger is better....usually stretching a jet cuts its range short. Then again, the A346 has much different engines than the A343...so maybe this completely wipes out that disadvantage.


Fly one thing; Fly it well
User currently offlineAviationwiz From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 959 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 2156 times:

Thrust,

For this route, SAA needs a combination of carrying a lot of pax. and long range, as the route is always full.



Proudly from the Home of the Red Tail.
User currently offlineYUL332LX From Canada, joined Feb 2004, 820 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 2138 times:

Some were later given similar upgrades, but still do not feature anywhere near that range

Wrong again depending on what you consider “anywhere near that range.”

Remember, we're talking about a configuration of 239 pax and no cargo.




E volavo, volavo felice più in alto del sole, e ancora più su mentre il mondo pian piano spariva lontano laggiù ...
User currently offlineAndz From South Africa, joined Feb 2004, 8414 posts, RR: 11
Reply 18, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 2089 times:
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Those same winds that Vikkyvik mentioned are the main reason that JNB-SYD is under 12 hours and SYD-JNB is over 14 hours.

JNB is 5,500ft asl and there are always penalties in takeoff weight, and therefore fuel load and range, even for a long range aircraft like the A340. Europe has always easily been in range but the US is a little further away.

On the engine issue, SAA 346s have Rolls-Royce engines and the 343s have CFMs (uprated on the 300e version that SAA operate).



After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
User currently offlineBuckfifty From Canada, joined Oct 2001, 1316 posts, RR: 20
Reply 19, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 2023 times:

Wow, this is one of the few times that bigger is better....usually stretching a jet cuts its range short. Then again, the A346 has much different engines than the A343...so maybe this completely wipes out that disadvantage.

The 346 also carries 30% more fuel, around 153 tons.

Some airlines actually decrease their A346 capacity so that it has better range. eg Cathay Pacific's A346 only carry 286 passengers against Airbus recommendation of 380!

That's not really the main reason why there are less seats. The CX A346's actually carries 288 passengers, with 68 of them in premium seating (8 first, 60 business). It's more or less what the airline considers to be the optimum mixed seating for the destinations it is supposed to serve. However, less pax does help the cargo carrying capability.


User currently offlineTom_eddf From Germany, joined Apr 2000, 451 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 1981 times:

On the engine issue, SAA 346s have Rolls-Royce engines and the 343s have CFMs (uprated on the 300e version that SAA operate).

By the way: Do you know the exact thrust rating for the CFM56-5C/P used on the -300E? I've repeatedly heard people referring to it as an uprated version, but on their web site, CFM still mentions 34klbs as the highest possible rating on the -5C. With the -5C4 already rated at 34000 - what's the uprating then all about???


User currently offlineGigneil From United States of America, joined Nov 2002, 16345 posts, RR: 86
Reply 21, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 1829 times:

Nobody knows for sure.

People THINK that they've been uprated to 36,000 lbs thrust, but again, nobody knows for sure.

The CFM website doesn't include information on the specific engine.

N


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