Singapore Airlines has today taken delivery of the first commercial
Airbus A380 to go into production, the official ceremony which took place
earlier today in at the Henri Ziegler Delivery Center in Toulouse France, was
attended by over 500 people along with Chief Executive Officers Tom Enders (Airbus),
Sir John Rose (Rolls-Royce) and Chew Choon Seng (Singapore Airlines)
first delivery marks the culmination of an engineering project unrivalled in
the aerospace industry. The A380 is the largest passenger plane ever built and
the first completely new design of a passenger aircraft in decades.
have been built in plants around the world before being brought together for
assembly at key Airbus facilities in Europe. Final assembly took place in
Toulouse, France, while the painting of the livery and installation of the
aircraft cabin took place in Hamburg, Germany.
Singapore Airlines first announced its intention to become
an A380 customer in September 2000, with an order for 10 A380s and options on a
further 15. That firm order was increased to 19 in July 2006. At catalogue
prices, the commitment to the 19 firm orders, including engines and spares, is
in the order of US$5.7 billion.
Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines will power the first 10
aircraft in the Singapore Airlines order. An engine selection has not yet been
made for the subsequent nine aircraft. Since the order was announced, Singapore
Airlines has completed the enormous task of preparing for the entry into
service of the new super-jumbo. Every aspect of the aircraft’s operations –
engineering, catering, cargo and baggage loading and unloading, passenger
embarkation and disembarkation, flying operations and every aspect of customer
service on board – has been redesigned to
accommodate the extra passenger capacity, while maintaining
In addition, a number of new cabin products have been
developed, after a detailed consultation exercise with frequent travellers,
which began as far back as 2001. The new cabin products were unveiled in late
2006 and are being rolled out on all new aircraft across the Singapore Airlines
Today, Singapore Airlines unveils some new innovations,
unique to the A380.
The Singapore Airlines A380 is configured with 471 seats in
three classes: Economy, Business and the new Singapore Airlines Suites; a class
beyond first. The aircraft will enter commercial service on Thursday 25 October
2007, with a special return flight between Singapore and Sydney. The majority
of seats on this flight were sold at auction on eBay, the global online
marketplace, and all of the
proceeds from the auction are being split among charities
in Singapore, Sydney and a global humanitarian organisation.
Then, on Sunday 28 October 2007, the A380 will commence
scheduled service between Singapore and Sydney on one of the three daily
flights in each direction. The delivery of subsequent aircraft will allow for
the introduction of the A380, also on one of the three daily flights between
Singapore and London’s Heathrow Airport from the first quarter of 2008.
During the last few years, Singapore Airlines has joined
with Airbus, and other A380 customers, to work with the world’s major airports
to ensure they are A380-ready. The support of the airport communities has meant
many airports, to which A380s will operate, are now ready, or in the final
stages of becoming so. Singapore’s Changi Airport, which will be home to the
Singapore Airlines A380 fleet, was the first to be ready, and when the new
Terminal 3 opens early next year, 19 gates across the three terminals will be
fully A380-ready, including having aerobridge access to both decks.
Singapore Airlines is particularly delighted to recognise
the impressive operating capabilities of the A380, demonstrated since the
aircraft’s first flight in April 2005. Fuel burn is considerably lower, on a
seat-mile basis, than today’s large aircraft. This offers operating airlines
real efficiency benefits, while also mitigating the environmental impact of
flying. Emissions per passengers are the lowest of any aircraft.
The A380’s noise emissions prove that big aircraft are not
necessarily noisier. New technology, new design, airframe construction and
engines all aid in making the A380 the quietest large passenger jet ever built.
Onboard, the cabin amenity is substantially improved, with significantly lower
cabin noise throughout.