Airbus A380 Earns FAA – EASA Type Certification
The troubled Airbus A380 was issued a joint type certification by authorities of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The approval came on December 12, 2006, and applies to the version equipped with Rolls-Royce Trent 900 jet engines.
The mega jumbo jet is the largest commercial airliner in production with a capacity in some configurations to carry as many as 555 passengers up to 8,000 nm (15,000 km).
According to Airbus, the A380 test program has confirmed the airliner's projected range and fuel burn, as well as its low noise or acoustic specifications. The manufacturer claims these figures make the A380 an environmentally friendly or green airliner.
The certification comes after years of flight test involving five Airbus A380s flying 2,600 flight hours in 800 flights. First flight was on April 27, 2005. Only one of the airplanes was powered by Engine Alliance GP7200 engines, with the other four flying under power provided by Rolls-Royce Trent 900s.
The A380 program has been both ambitious and troubled. Delays in deliveries have recently led to high profile cancellations by flagship customers like package carrier Federal Express (FedEx).
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