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Airbus video lifts the lid on air show flight displays

Anyone with even a mild interest in flying machines is going to have plenty of fun at an air show.

Flight Tests - Ep.9: Flight Displays

Besides the entertaining flight displays that run through the day, you also can get lost in the vast exhibition spaces where aerospace giants show off new products and technologies alongside niche aircraft designs from emerging companies.

While the coronavirus pandemic has forced the cancellation of many air shows around the world over the last 18 months, a growing number are making tentative plans to get back to business.

Organizers will certainly be looking to welcome the likes of Airbus, with the European aviation behemoth no doubt equally eager to once again take up any invitations.

Ahead of its next air show appearance, Airbus this week released a video (top) that lifts the lid on these popular events.

Airbus notes that while air shows are an excellent opportunity for airlines and other customers to learn more about its latest offerings, the events also are a great chance for the public to properly explore a huge range of planes and enjoy spectacular displays featuring aircraft performing flight maneuvers at close range.

The video also takes a look at the rules that govern those taking part in flight displays, with safety procedures, of course, at the top of the list.

Airbus explains that while its aircraft perform similar maneuvers during flight displays, there will be occasional variations according to each plane’s characteristics and the constraints relating to the local environment. The location of spectators and wind direction/speed also are taken into consideration when designing the flight plan.

Part way through the video, the France-based aerospace company takes us through the various stages of a flight display performed by one of its A380 aircraft, a double-decker jet that’s the largest passenger plane in service today. Footage includes sequences from the flight deck as the pilots put the plane through its paces.

An interesting tidbit offered by Airbus reveals that while the minimum altitude for air displays is usually 500 feet, “maneuvers are performed at 800 to 1,000 feet on very large airplanes so as not to frighten the crowd.”

Of course, air shows are not for everyone. But folks with a broad interest in cutting-edge technology or engineering are bound to find something of interest at such events, and the flight displays alone are sure to impress (just remember to take ear plugs).

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Trevor Mogg
Contributing Editor
Not so many moons ago, Trevor moved from one tea-loving island nation that drives on the left (Britain) to another (Japan)…
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