FRANKFURT (Fraport) - Landing on Runway North (25R) at 08:56 local time this morning, the Airbus A380 superjumbo made its world premier at Frankfurt Airport (FRA) for the aircraft's first ground-handling tests – so-called "airport compatibility testing."
The A380 is scheduled to take off tomorrow at approximately 09:00 in the morning. In consultation with DFS Deutsche Flugsicherung (German Air Navigation Services), the departing superjumbo will salute Frankfurt with a fly pass over the city at only about 1,500 meters. Weather permitting, the citizens of Frankfurt will be able to enjoy a glimpse of this gigantic European jet before tomorrow's annual Frankfurt Marathon race gets underway.
Initial handling tests at FRA with the A380 superjumbo ran smoothly, according to Fraport AG's assessment. Airbus specialists chose Frankfurt Airport for practical ground handling tests because preparations at FRA for this new generation of jet aircraft have already progressed significantly and because Fraport has maintained close dialog with the aircraft's engineers for many years.
Fraport's executive board chairman Dr. Wilhelm Bender stated that the intensive preparatory work, as well as the long-standing information exchange with the aircraft manufacturer, has paid off. "Handling operations on the ramp proceeded as expected and, together with Airbus, we are delighted about the results."
Bender thanked the entire staff involved in today's practical tests by saying: "You have demonstrated professional competence and great commitment." Tests at Frankfurt Airport's Terminal 2 included: docking a passenger bridge to the upper deck of the Airbus A380 for the very first time; providing catering supplies to this section of the aircraft, using special lift trucks; providing the full range of supply and disposal services as well as de-icing.
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