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A380: What's The Maximum Growth Potential?  
User currently offlineRedFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4365 posts, RR: 28
Posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 8139 times:

Simple question: what is the maximum growth limitations of the current base design of the A380? There's been a lot of discussions about its designed growth into a -900 version. However, I was curious: if there were no limitations with regards to the 80m box, could the design be expanded even larger (e.g., a -1000 series) with minimal modifications or is the -900 pretty much it? I did a cursory search and couldn't find any references to growth potential beyond the -900 size iteration.

Note: I'm not implying that the -900 wouldn't be adequate; just wondering how much growth the Big Girl could accommodate if the market one day called for something even larger. (I realize a lot of growth considerations may be dictated by infrastructure limitations at airports she may flight out of. But I want to know from an engineering standpoint how big she could conceivably get without major design modifications.)


My other home is a Piper Cherokee 180C
31 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31123 posts, RR: 85
Reply 1, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 8117 times:
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Steven Udvar-Hazy, I believe, has advocated Airbus push the length out beyond 80m.

User currently offlineElbowRoom From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2008, 180 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 8097 times:

I just found this from an old thread. Made me smile  Smile

Quoting LHStarAlliance (Thread starter):
Will we see the 389 ?

No. We may not even see a 388.

http://www.airliners.net/aviation-fo...eneral_aviation/read.main/3139480/


User currently offlineDL767captain From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 8055 times:

The only reason i could see the A389 being useful is if airlines decided to condense something like 2 777 flights into one A380 flight to conserve fuel as well as lower ticket costs. And if fuel keeps going up it could happen.

User currently offlineRedFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4365 posts, RR: 28
Reply 4, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 7912 times:



Quoting ElbowRoom (Reply 2):
I just found this from an old thread. Made me smile

Well, we know the A380 has room to grow into a -900 version. Whether that ever happens or not, is not the issue. What I want to know is if it can be stretched even further, beyond the -900 that is currently envisioned. In short, did Airbus design in further growth potential beyond the -900 stretch?

Quoting Stitch (Reply 1):
Steven Udvar-Hazy, I believe, has advocated Airbus push the length out beyond 80m.

Was he advocating a length beyond the -900 stretch?



My other home is a Piper Cherokee 180C
User currently offlineWingedMigrator From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 2218 posts, RR: 56
Reply 5, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 7899 times:



Quoting Stitch (Reply 1):
Steven Udvar-Hazy, I believe, has advocated Airbus push the length out beyond 80m.

I think it won't go much beyond that. Number one, even the largest airports aren't set up for it, and number two, since the aircraft sits pretty low on its landing gear there isn't a lot of room to grow it before ground clearance at rotation becomes a problem (tail strikes).

Check out the dotted lines in the diagrams below to see what I mean, starting from the main landing gear and running up under the tail... the 'departure angle' in 4x4 terms  Smile

Big version: Width: 800 Height: 800 File size: 148kb


I think the growth potential of the A380 is measured in tonnes, not just meters.


User currently offlineWingedMigrator From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 2218 posts, RR: 56
Reply 6, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 7880 times:



Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 4):
Was he advocating a length beyond the -900 stretch?

There is no such thing, as of yet, as the -900 stretch, although a length just shy of 80 meters has been informally envisioned since the beginning of the programme. Udvar-Hazy has indeed advocated a -900 stretch beyond 80 meters, to whatever length is found optimal without the length constraint. The length of the -900 stretch is therefore still to be determined.


User currently offline2175301 From United States of America, joined May 2007, 1074 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 7582 times:

Due to wing length the A380 is currently limited to something like 57 airports in the world, without affecting other traffic (i.e. shutdown traffic & clear taxiways), assuming that those airports do the modifications to accommodate it (which I believe about half of those airports have either done or have indicated a willingness to do). A few more new airports will be built that can handle it.

Making it bigger - in any dimension is not going to increase the number of airports that can handle the plane.

The overall market for the A380 is thus limited to how many flights can realistically occur between the airports that can handle it.

I do not see a large market for a larger A380. That does not mean that they might not be able to sell some.

As a comparison; it is my understanding that the 747-8 could operate at about 130 airports in the world without affecting other traffic due to its modestly shorter wingspan (a few meters makes a lot of difference). Yet, it seems that not a lot of companies are ordering it to service those other airports.


User currently offlineBongodog1964 From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2006, 3638 posts, RR: 3
Reply 8, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 7490 times:

At what point does extending the length create stand problems at airports ?
Particularly where you have parallel piers with aircraft parking nose in to each pier and a central taxying area between them.


User currently offlineBlueShamu330s From UK - England, joined Sep 2001, 2988 posts, RR: 23
Reply 9, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 7477 times:



Quoting ElbowRoom (Reply 2):
I just found this from an old thread. Made me smile

Ah, memories, pure nostalgia.

The only thing missing was a contribution from Nostradamus !!  Wink

It'll never fly....We may never see a 388...It'll soone be a technological white elephant...Airbus have made a mistake and they know it....it should have been the size of the 748 to make it more competetive..... it all brought a tear to my eye.  rotfl 

Quoting WingedMigrator (Reply 5):
I think the growth potential of the A380 is measured in tonnes, not just meters.

*ding ding* I think you're right.  thumbsup 



So I drive a 4x4. So what?! Tax the a$$ off me for it...oh, you already have... :-(
User currently offlineGlareskin From Netherlands, joined Jun 2005, 1307 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 7264 times:



Quoting WingedMigrator (Reply 5):
I think the growth potential of the A380 is measured in tonnes, not just meters.



Quoting BlueShamu330s (Reply 9):
Quoting WingedMigrator (Reply 5):
I think the growth potential of the A380 is measured in tonnes, not just meters.

*ding ding* I think you're right.   

All right , so what is the growth potential in tonnes? And how many meters does that correspond with?  Big grin



There's still a long way to go before all the alliances deserve a star...
User currently offlineElbowRoom From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2008, 180 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 7187 times:



Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 4):
Well, we know the A380 has room to grow into a -900 version. Whether that ever happens or not, is not the issue. What I want to know is if it can be stretched even further, beyond the -900 that is currently envisioned. In short, did Airbus design in further growth potential beyond the -900 stretch

I'm sorry, I was going off at a tangent. Thankfully there are others on here who do understand the engineering issues! From what those guys say, it sounds like an 85m version is feasible, and even an 87m version - but that would just require an additional pair of doors so it may be best to stay below 87m (see Astuteman's reply 4 in this thread: http://www.airliners.net/aviation-fo...general_aviation/read.main/3849772 ). So it seems you can go up to about double the floorspace of a 744 before the engineering becomes a barrier.


User currently offlineSlz396 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7096 times:



Quoting ElbowRoom (Reply 11):
So it seems you can go up to about double the floorspace of a 744 before the engineering becomes a barrier.

WHOW! Wow!

Quite a beast, isn't it?

It is getting more and more obvious why the A380 flies on such a vast wing.

Stunning to see how the A380-800 has no problems beating the 748i economics today, even though it is a seriously shrunk version of the 'real' A380...

Makes you dream about how efficient an 85m long A380-900 could be when it flies in about 10 years from now: 2.5 liters of fuel per 100km/pax, anybody? The 787 suddenly looks like a gas guzzler in its face!


User currently offlineAviationbuff From India, joined Mar 2008, 1425 posts, RR: 3
Reply 13, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7091 times:

My  twocents  .

A388 itself is a shrink version thats why the wings are larger. A389 is the base version and there is always a possibility for growth.

Experts here can put more light on it.


User currently offlineRedFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4365 posts, RR: 28
Reply 14, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 6808 times:



Quoting Slz396 (Reply 12):
Makes you dream about how efficient an 85m long A380-900 could be when it flies in about 10 years from now: 2.5 liters of fuel per 100km/pax, anybody? The 787 suddenly looks like a gas guzzler in its face!

If it were to compete on the same routes then, yes, the 787 would appear as a gas-guzzler. But that will never happen. Not to detract from your comment, it is impressive what the A380 can achieve through economies of scale.



My other home is a Piper Cherokee 180C
User currently offlineManfredj From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 1132 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 6634 times:



Quoting BlueShamu330s (Reply 9):
It'll never fly....We may never see a 388...It'll soone be a technological white elephant...Airbus have made a mistake and they know it....it should have been the size of the 748 to make it more competitive..... it all brought a tear to my eye.

Allow me to be the pessimist here: Speculating on a stretched version of an aircraft with less than stellar sales figures seems silly to me.

It think the REAL question we should be asking is: Do current 380 sales warrant a stretched version?

To remain fair...the same could be asked of the 748. Is there really a need to extend the life of a 744?

Quoting Slz396 (Reply 12):
Stunning to see how the A380-800 has no problems beating the 748i economics today, even though it is a seriously shrunk version of the 'real' A380...

Makes you dream about how efficient an 85m long A380-900 could be when it flies in about 10 years from now: 2.5 liters of fuel per 100km/pax, anybody? The 787 suddenly looks like a gas guzzler in its face!

Please spare us your pretensions....if that were the case, the 380 could sub for regional jets on any given flight.



757: The last of the best
User currently offlinePylon101 From Russia, joined Feb 2008, 1603 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 6065 times:

The A388 plarform can be transformed into 389 w/o much change in wings and wings box.
It was stated by Airbus for several times.

As to orders and sales - they are going as predicted.
So far we have just one airline using it.

The real picture will be seen when not 5 - but at least 50 aicraft are in service.

The usual reference to slow start of 747-100 is quit applicable IMHO.


User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5760 posts, RR: 32
Reply 17, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 6024 times:

I love the people on this site who can predict with absoulte certainty what will, or will not, happen over the next 30 years or more, while most experts will admit that they can't predict what will, or will not, happen over the next six months.  Big grin

User currently offlineManu From Canada, joined Dec 2004, 406 posts, RR: 7
Reply 18, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 5497 times:



Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 17):
I love the people on this site who can predict with absoulte certainty what will, or will not, happen over the next 30 years or more, while most experts will admit that they can't predict what will, or will not, happen over the next six months.

All seriousness aside, obivously what someone predicts here isn't fact. But if you think at what makes most sense without a lot of data, you actually are more often right than wrong. Read the book Blink to understand this theory.

Applying it to this site, we've all got an interest in the industry (why where are here!). So I speculate, that as a collective we actually have a good idea what the future will hold. Just don't ask us to prove it!


User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5760 posts, RR: 32
Reply 19, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 5447 times:



Quoting Manu (Reply 18):
So I speculate, that as a collective we actually have a good idea what the future will hold. Just don't ask us to prove it!

Well I can assume that twelve months ago you all invested heavily in oil, and dumped your bank and property shares.  Wink


User currently offlineManu From Canada, joined Dec 2004, 406 posts, RR: 7
Reply 20, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 5408 times:



Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 19):
Well I can assume that twelve months ago you all invested heavily in oil, and dumped your bank and property shares

I'm Canadian. We're not in the credit crunch as bad, and we've got oil so our inflated dollar has helped reduce the cost of oil increase when compared to the US. Besides that, yes -- point taken.

We are taught to judge our instinct and prove a decision with facts. When more often our first instinct is right rather than wrong. Doesn't mean it can't be wrong!!


User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5760 posts, RR: 32
Reply 21, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days ago) and read 5280 times:



Quoting Manu (Reply 20):
Doesn't mean it can't be wrong!!

I am reminded of Socrates' quote: “The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.”


User currently offlineAirNZ From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days ago) and read 5198 times:



Quoting Aviationbuff (Reply 13):
A388 itself is a shrink version thats why the wings are larger. A389 is the base version and there is always a possibility for growth.

As far as I'm aware, and has been stated on many occasions, the A388 is not a shrink version at all. It is the base version, with it's design based on the ability to grow (hence the large wings etc.). Besides, how as you claim, can you have a 'shrink' version of an aircraft which has not yet been designed/developed/offered?


User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 23, posted (6 years 3 months 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 3999 times:



Quoting RedFlyer (Thread starter):
However, I was curious: if there were no limitations with regards to the 80m box, could the design be expanded even larger (e.g., a -1000 series) with minimal modifications or is the -900 pretty much it?

A -1000 is almost certainly possible, if the market was there. As is well known, the A380 was built with expansion in mind so they can go to the -900 without much change at all. That implies that, for modest changes, they can go to -1000. All base airplanes have historically supported at least one stretch (sometimes two or three) and, from an engineering point of view, the A380-900 seems to be a "base airplane" (as does the A380-800).

Tom.


User currently offlineKennyK From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2005, 482 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (6 years 3 months 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 3342 times:

Could you imagine an A380 stretched so much it might get confused at a distance with an A340-600, with legs like a dragon fly.....

25 David_itl : The question is merely "Will the profits from the sales of A389s outweigh the development costs of the A389?" i believe EK and/or VS wouldn't mind th
26 Legoguy : If a A380-900 was produced, how much would the development costs be? If the wings have already been designed with a stretch in mind, then the fuselage
27 Pylon101 : So-called "experts" - as part of scientific community - seriously undermined their reputation within last couple of decades. Best examples: "Problem
28 Astuteman : Personally, I don't think this is the "real" question. I think the stretch will be driven by the need to improve the economics of the A380.. I believ
29 Bmacleod : The real question should be how many passengers can be packed into a double-deck airliner without comprimising safety issues like emergency evacuation
30 Astuteman : The current plane is certified by those responsible for these things , for 853 passengers. Certifying a longer plane, with more exits (i.e. not compr
31 BlatantEcho : Are you in a vortex of misinformation or something? Scientific proof is in the paintings man! You didn't spell Kyoto, industrial, or refrigerators co
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