The A380 – which has been in commercial service since 2007 – is an essential part of the solution to achieving sustainable growth, doing more with less: alleviating traffic congestion at busy airports by transporting more passengers with fewer flights, more efficiently and with much lower CO2 emissions per seat.
The A380 was the first commercial aircraft to incorporate as much as 25% composites, saving up to 1.5 tonnes of weight and resulting in a very low fuel burn. The double-deck jetliner has a fuel burn of less than three litres per passenger per 100 kilometres.
The combination of lower weight, improved aerodynamics and new generation engines has brought fuel burn down by a massive 40%.
Alongside CO2 emissions reductions, Airbus’ efforts to reduce aircraft noise are underscored by its efficient jetliner families and leading the way is the flagship A380, which carries 60% more passengers than the aircraft it replaces, but produces 50% less noise energy on departure, as well as three-to-four times less when landing.
Developments in noise reduction include the automatic noise abatement departure procedure, which optimises the thrust and flight path to reduce noise over populated areas. Airbus is working in partnership with British Airways, Heathrow Airport and NATS to develop optimised departures and arrivals to further improve the noise performance of the A380.