IN­AU­GU­RAL FLIGHT OF AIR­BUS BEL­UGA WHALE

SP's Airbuz - - News Briefs -

On July 19 this year, the Air­bus’ Bel­u­gaXL pro­duced by Air­buis, un­der­took its in­au­gu­ral flight. One of the largest trans­port air­craft in ex­is­tence, the Bel­uga Whale is six me­tres longer and one me­tre wider than its pre­de­ces­sor, the Bel­u­gaST trans­porter. The flight, which took-off from Blagnac in Toulouse, sig­ni­fied the start of a 10-month test­ing pe­riod be­fore the plane can start fly­ing com­mer­cially. Typ­i­cally, the Bel­uga se­ries has been used by Air­bus to trans­port air­craft wings from fac­to­ries to its assem­bly lines in Europe. One wing fac­tory is sited at Hawar­den air­port in North Wales. To al­low the su­per­sized plane to land, Hawar­den is erect­ing new blast fences and resur­fac­ing its run­way. The an­nounce­ment came soon af­ter Air­bus re­vealed the su­per trans­porter’s new paint job, which was de­signed to rep­re­sent its name sake, the Bel­uga Whale. The de­sign was voted for in a poll by 20,000 peo­ple. Air­bus said the air­craft will be the first of five Bel­u­gaXL’s to en­ter ser­vice dur­ing 2019.

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