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KarelXWB
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Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:29 pm

It's not always a commercial jetliner that celebrates its anniversary:

Quote:
With its maiden flight on September 13, 1994, the Beluga cargo aircraft is celebrating this week twenty years of transporting Airbus component parts between Airbus’ European manufacturing sites.

Since 1995, the fleet of five Beluga aircraft replaced the ageing Super Guppy transporters in order to supply the Airbus final assembly lines in Toulouse and Hamburg. Today, more than sixty flights are performed each week between eleven sites, carrying crucial parts for all of the Airbus programmes.

Press release
http://www.airbus.com/presscentre/pr...h-anniversary-of-its-first-flight/

http://www.airbus.com/fileadmin/media_gallery/photogallery/big/800x600_1410514202_Beluga_5_aircraft_aerial_view_.jpg
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mwhcvt
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:32 pm

Amazing really...though I'm a little disappointed that the were not arranged in number order...very sloppy airbus and their photographer    
Must think up a new one soon, slow moving brain trying to get into gear ;)
 
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crimsonchin
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:35 pm

Amazing pic. Never seen all 5 (or even more than 1 for that matter) in a single shot.
 
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KarelXWB
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:37 pm

Quoting CrimsonChin (Reply 2):
or even more than 1

Here's another photo you might like:


Beluga's home - La maison des belugas by Luccio.errera, on Flickr
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Revelation
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Sat Sep 13, 2014 12:37 am

Quoting KarelXWB (Reply 3):
Here's another photo you might like:

  

If nothing else, the photo proves Airbus produced an aircraft even uglier than the A380...
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a380900
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Sat Sep 13, 2014 1:00 am

When was the last one built? At some point, a new one will be needed. When? Will Airbus create a new one based on the A330? Any clues?
 
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VirginFlyer
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Sat Sep 13, 2014 1:56 am

Quoting A380900 (Reply 5):
At some point, a new one will be needed. When? Will Airbus create a new one based on the A330? Any clues?

Here's an article from a year and a half ago that talks about an A330 Beluga:

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...00-to-replace-beluga-fleet-382215/

Quote:
Airbus has tentatively identified an A330-200 derivative as the most promising long-term candidate to replace its five A300-600ST Beluga oversize transports.

...

Airbus wants an aircraft which not only meets high payload capabilities - including capacity to carry two fully-fitted A350 wings - but can operate within airfield landing limitations at its UK wing facility at Broughton, to which it will deliver A350 wing covers.

Broughton's declared available landing distance for the shorter runway 04 approach is 1,663m (5,460ft).

Airbus considers this restriction to be too tight for a modified A330-300 or A340-500, while the payload requirement is too high for an A300-600. It believes an A330-200 variant - tentatively designated the A330-200XL - could potentially cope with the landing criteria at projected weights of around 135t, and is the most promising option.


Then there's this thread from the same time too: Airbus To Launch New Gen Beluga Soon? (by queb Feb 6 2013 in Civil Aviation)

V/F

[Edited 2014-09-12 19:09:33]
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PBNZ
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:08 am

So do we know much about how they're crewed? I.e., how many crews, and are they all ex airline / cargo pilots?

Flying intra-europe must mean getting home for dinnertime most days so a pretty good job I'd guess - quite a bit of competition to fly these ....?
 
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antoniemey
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Sat Sep 13, 2014 3:11 am

Why does #3 have different colored titles?
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Miami
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Tue Sep 16, 2014 9:46 am

Here's a video. 'Airbus’ Beluga celebrates 20 years in the air'

www.youtube.com/watch?v=HUhT_HWyFRY&list=UUkfZz95mfqPnzquatVpDTsQ
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travelavnut
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Tue Sep 16, 2014 10:47 am

Quoting Revelation (Reply 4):
If nothing else, the photo proves Airbus produced an aircraft even uglier than the A380...

Well at least there is always the Dreamlifter that trumps both      
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jumpjet
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Tue Sep 16, 2014 11:05 am

I see the Belugas over here in the west of England almost on a daily basis, always on exactly the same track on their way up to Chester. They're so easy to see with the naked eye even at 29,000 feet, they never cease to thrill as they're just so different!
 
egnr
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Tue Sep 16, 2014 9:48 pm

Quoting antoniemey (Reply 8):
Why does #3 have different colored titles?

Beluga 3 is promoting "mobility" (Airbus parlance for internal movement of staff across its sites) on one side...

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Charles Cunliffe



...and general recruitment with "join us" on the other side

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Dn280

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CdnCactus
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Tue Sep 16, 2014 10:03 pm

It's a "so ugly it's cute" plane, versus the Dreamlifter which is basically a flying Oscar Mayer wiener. Honestly though, I wish I can see these planes in person - spotting is getting a bit dull nowadays with everyone flying the same things.
 
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Boeing778X
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Tue Sep 16, 2014 10:20 pm

Quoting Revelation (Reply 4):
If nothing else, the photo proves Airbus produced an aircraft even uglier than the A380...
Quoting travelavnut (Reply 10):
Well at least there is always the Dreamlifter that trumps both

No doubt the Beluga is ugly, it's a given, but the Dreamlifter isn't a work of art either.

Still, regardless, said planes are very useful to the companies they belong to.
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Miami
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RE: Beluga Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Tue Sep 16, 2014 10:22 pm

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