The Airbus-designed aircraft took off from Blagnac airstrip this morning on a test flight. The passenger jet has many components made from lighter materials and is designed to use 25% less fuel than earlier wide-bodied planes.
What's that heaving into view over the horizon? Thanks to smartphones, tablets, and pretty much everything enabled with GPS, it's the end of traditional navigation as we know it. You can't get lost now.
Since Boeing and Airbus are in a pitched battle for superiority in the aircraft industry, you may not be surprised to learn that both companies have scheduled first flights for new planes at the very same time. But you'd be wrong, kinda--they're wholly different beasts.
More terrible aviation news: A passenger jet carrying 153 souls has crashed into the sea in the Indian Ocean. According to press reports, the flight was a Yemenia Airbus A310 flying out of Yemen into the island of Comoros. It was attempting a landing on the island in windy weather, and appears to have come down some nine miles off the coast. Amazingly, authorities say they've rescued a five year-old child from the ocean, but all 152 other passengers and crew have apparently perished.