Plain Aviation

the life of a planespotter and true avgeek

Tag: flight

Airbus A350-1000 Maiden Flight

On Thursday November the 23rd, the new Airbus A350-1000 made its maiden flight at the Airbus headquarters in Toulouse Blagnac, France. The aircraft took of at 10:42am local time with two Airbus test pilots and four engineers. Though the weather wasn’t great, spectators and planespotters gathered to watch the first takeoff of the new aircraft. Watch the official video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PDY7oPUti8I

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The first A350-1000 lifting off on its maiden flight – Photo from Airbus press release

 

Update: Cathay 747 Farewell Flyover

It’s 8:30am, and here I am at Victoria’s Peak waiting for the Cathay Pacific 747-400 Farewell Flyover. Even though I got here two hours in advance, the place is already jam-packed with spectators. I managed to find a nice spot on the rock, and now the waiting begins. The total value of all the camera gear people have brought here today? Beyond me. I’ll have pictures from today uploaded as soon as possible.

Dragonair Business Class A330 Review HKG-PEK

Dragonair is a lesser known carrier that is the regional sister airline of Hong Kong’s Cathay Pacific. Using an all-Airbus fleet of A330-300’s, A321’s, and A320’s, it flies from Hong Kong to various destinations in Asia. This week I was able to sample the Dragonair business class offering on a flight to beijing, so I decided it would be nice to share my experience.

Jet fuel and aviation – all you need to know

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Texaco Aviation Fuel Tanker – Photo by Flickr user Canadian Pacific CC 2.0

Have you ever stopped and wondered about the strange substance we call jet fuel that powers the airplanes you fly on? Perhaps you’re even curious about the nitty-gritty aspects of it, such as what is it made of, how much of it is carried on board every flight, where it is stored, and perhaps how much of it is burned every flight. Look no further, as I’m about to show you all there is to know about jet fuel.

1. What is jet fuel, and what is it made of?

Jet fuel is a specific type of fuel that has been designed to be

Why can’t we use our phones on an airplane?

Airlines have always been very strict on the use of cell phones in-flight due to the belief that they will affect sensitive aircraft systems. Before Airplane Mode was invented and made common, passengers had to shut down their phones entirely for the duration of the flight. But of course, that was also before smartphones became popular and people read newspaper and magazines or talked to their neighbor. Nowadays people are generally allowed to use their electronics only on Airplane Mode and after the aircraft has reached 10,000 feet, although specific regulations vary and

Debris from MH370 found off Mozambique

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A Malaysian Airlines 777-200ER similar to the one operating MH370 when it disappeared. Photo by Christian Junker. CC 2.0

For the second time since the disappearance of MH370 in March of 2014, debris from the “crashed” airplane has been found. Last time it was a flaperon (a movable control surface) from the wing found on Reunion Island, this time it’s a piece of the horizontal stabilizer ( found near Mozambique. Experts have agreed that the piece, painted with the words “NO STEP”, is indeed from a Boeing 777, and therefore

MH370: My review of Goodnight Malaysian 370

Perhaps what’s so special about the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 is that never before has an aviation incident (for lack of a better word) grappled the world’s attention with such intensity for so long a time. The initial disappearance was a major new story in itself, and people were kept on the edge of their seats for months as the investigation and search operations went along. Two years later, it seems like the investigations and search operations have stopped, and everyone has to some degree forgotten about MH370. Those who still remember will probably be

Last flight of Cathay’s passenger 747 scheduled

After operating several variants of the 747 on passenger flights for more than three decades, Cathay has tentatively scheduled a last revenue flight for the type. The flight will be CX543 from Tokyo Haneda (HND) back to Hong Kong (HKG) and will take place on the 1st of October 2016. The flight is scheduled to depart HND at 10:45 JST (9:45 HKT) and arrive at HKG around 15:05HKT. The HKG-HND-HKG route is currently operated by Cathay’s two remaining passenger 744’s, which have been retired from long-haul service. It is unknown if Cathay will ever operate the 747-8 on passenger flights, however it sadly seems very unlikely as Boeing has been slowing down 747-8 production in the past year due to low demand. While I may find some comfort in knowing that Cathay will still fly freighter 747’s for years to come, it’s truly saddening to see the retirement of my favorite aircraft.

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