New Delhi: The Airbus 380 super jumbo, the world's largest passenger aircraft, will land for the first time in India on Sunday, 6 May 2007 at the New Delhi international airport.
Currently, only the Delhi, Mumbai and Kochi airports are capable of landing the A380, which is being configured to carry as many as 555 passengers in a standard seating format. The size of the aircraft, as well as its passenger load, means that airports around the world are trying to figure out ways to accommodate the plane and handle the sudden rush of traffic that the arrival and departure of each such plane entails.
For instance, an airport's runway has to be 60 paved metres, with 7.5m grass shoulder on each side, if it is to allow an A 380 super jumbo to take off or land. The existing runway at the Delhi international airport is about 45 paved metres, with a 15m grass shoulder on each side and this has now been increased in length for the aircraft's arrival.
The country's new airports, being built in Bangalore and Hyderabad, will ensure that they can handle the giant.So far, Kingfisher Airlines is the only Indian carrier that has placed an order for the aircraft and expects to take delivery of its first one in 2011. The launch customer for the A380 is Singapore Airlines, which will take delivery of the first aircraft in October this year.