Re: A3XX vs B747-600 (was: Airbus lawsuit coming?)

From:         Alan Wong <Alan.Wong@anu.edu.au>
Organization: Australian National University
Date:         30 Jul 96 01:33:00 
References:   1 2 3 4
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don@rata.vuw.ac.nz (Don Stokes) wrote:
>Presumably the difference is in the fuselage -- what does the A3XX look
>like compared to the 747-600?  Is the A3XX double-decked?  Or just very
>wide?  Or both?  Does the -600 retain the basic 747 fuselage with a very
>stretched upper deck, or can it be widened by a seat or three?

Preliminary studies of A3XX suggest it would be double decked for the
whole length with 10 abreast layout in lower deck and 8/9 (?) on upper.
The 747-600 would be stretched in comparison to 747-400 (dunno if it
includes upper deck), but would retain cross-section.

>I've never seen shuttle busses used to load anything much bigger than a
>737 -- airports that use them usually have bridges as well for loading
>widebodies and use the busses to load smaller planes.  To load a 747
>would take rather a lot of busses (even the large ones used at airports),
>which doesn't scale too well -- not only in terms of passenger
>inconvenience but in total turnaround time. Airlines don't make money out
>of aircraft waiting on the ground.

In Kai Tak (Hong Kong), buses are common for loading/unloading 747s. There
just aren't enough parking bays at the terminal. They have specially built
buses with drivers at both ends, lots of doors on all four sides and mostly
standing room only for passengers. It probably takes about 3-4 of these to
take all the passengers. Its not too bad when loading because passengers do
arrive at the gate at the same time, but when deplaning, they have buses
(oops, almost typed busses :-) ) waiting to collect passengers. Yes, it is
inconvenient, but better than no service at all (since they can't fit any
more planes at the terminal). As for turnaround time, the captain once
remarked "because this plane will be here for several hours, we won't be
parking at the terminal", so I'd imagine if the plane is in a hurry, it'll
get a gate. This may be a commercial decision too, if the gate costs a lot
more than the far away spot. The turnaround time could also be affected by
the slots available.

Alan.