Airbus family flight: A380, A350, A330 and A320 perform spectacular formation flight video

Airbus

Four Airbus aircraft have flown side-by-side for a spectacular display

Four Airbus airliners have flown together in formation in a spectacular display flight to mark 25 years of the aircraft manufacturer's "fly-by-wire" system.

Fly-by-wire refers to the electronic, semi-automatic system for controlling aircraft that replaces manual pilot controls.

The Airbus A320 was the first fly-by-wire airliner to enter commercial service and the system has since been used on its newer planes, including the A330, superjumbo A380 and the latest airliner in the sky, the A350.

Airbus

Four of the world's largest airliners take off on spectacular formation flight.

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Airbus says the same technology used across all four of these aircraft makes it easier for pilots to switch from one plane to another, reducing the amount of training required.

Airbus family flight: A380, A350, A330 and A320.

Airbus family flight: A380, A350, A330 and A320.

The A320 and A330 are among the most popular planes with airlines around the world. But despite initial success, the double-decker A380 superjumbo has struggled to sell in recent years.

A greater success story has been the new A350 – Airbus' rival to the Boeing Dreamliner. Like the 787 Dreamliner, the A350 is also a lightweight aircraft.

The A350 uses a combination of materials, including plastic reinforced by carbon fibre, along with titanium and aluminium alloys. More than 70 per cent of the aircraft is made of lightweight materials, helping airlines save on fuel.

Qatar Airways and Thai Airways are among the carriers flying the A350, while Qantas has indicated it is considering an ultra-long-range new version of the plane for its fleet in the future.

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