Thursday, 14 March 2013

The Airbus A380 - Who Was Behind it?

Just as the 747 is made by a company called Boeing, the Airbus A380 is made by the company known as EADS. But who, and or what is EADS? The European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company. EADS is a conglomerate of four companies. They are DeutscheAérospatiale, who are German; Aerospace AG from France; British Aerospace from the UK and CASA of Spain.
These four independent bodies decided to come together as one entity, to combine their strengths and knowledge to produce the A380. Boeing was one company in the same country. Producing the 747 would have been a cinch, as they all spoke English; EADS had to be done spread across four countries, and it also needed a new name for the project. Airbus. The plot was started way back in the day - in the summer of 1988. Yes, last millennium, a group of Airbus engineers led by Jean Roeder began to hatch the plot to create the Mega Monster plane.
At the very foundation of this plot, was the desire to challenge Boeing's monopoly on the wide bodied jet business. So,the plot was hatched.Airbus organized four groups of designers, one group from each country. Their remit was to come up with new technologies and designs to be used in future aircraft. They were to work on the designs and then have them ready for 1992. The most competitive designs would be the ones to get used.
Incredibly, in 1993, Boeing and a group of the Airbus consortium started a joint feasibility study; with the outlook of developing a Very Large Commercial Transport aircraft (VLCT). The plan was to develop a monster plane jointly, to share what was then seen as a limited market. It was Boeing who lost faith in the project first, and ditched it. Boeing's interest having declined because analysts thought that such a product was unlikely to cover the projected $15 billion development cost. Granted, only two airlines had expressed an interest in a massive plane.
Anyway, Boeing decided to concentrate on 'stretching' it's current 747's design. Airbus, however, decided to push ahead with it's own designs for a large plane. Analysts managed to convince Boeing that the industry was moving away from the 'hub and spoke' system required by large planes. They reckoned that people want to go from A to B, non stop in smaller planes; hence the Dreamliner. That might have been true, it didn't stop many airports from creating bigger spaces for the A380. Airlines wanted this big plane, and accommodations were made for it, all around the world.
Airbus A380 on the Wing.

It's a pity that Boeing and EADS didn't manage to work together on a monster plane;it's a pity that the analysts made the wrong analysis, to my mind. could have been celebrating a true joint monster craft, but hey! Boeing has it's 747, and Airbus has it's A380! Somehow, I like it like that, and I bet they do too!

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A380 taking off