With little to no need for most of its largest passenger aircraft, Singapore Airlines has sent two more Airbus A380s to Alice Springs, Australia, for long-term storage. The Simple Flying team had noticed the two additions via data made available at Planespotters.com and FlightRadar24.com. While there are still 13 A380s based out of Singapore Changi, the transition to Alice Springs signifies a commitment to keeping the jets out of commercial service for an extended period of time.
Two more A380s
The two A380s were flying down under had registrations 9V-SKP and 9V-SKQ. While 9V-SKQ made its journey on June 26th as flight SQ8867, 9V-SKP flew the next day as SQ8865. The flight time for this journey is about five hours.
Joining four other A380s
Now making for a total of six A380s, the two recent additions join four superjumbos that flew arrived in late April. Their registration numbers are as follows:
What’s in Alice Springs?
Alice Springs is where a company by the name of Asia Pacific Aircraft Storage is located. According to the company’s website, it “provides an aircraft storage facility that caters for short, medium and long term storage needs for the airline industry.”
Most avgeeks with a sense of geography will pick up on the significance of Alice Springs (ASP). Positioned in the geographic middle of Australia (the city is only a few hundred kilometers away from the accurate center of the continent), the area of Alice Springs is surrounded by the vast desert outback.
This region is known for its arid climate and relatively low humidity. Humidity is the main concern as its presence will increase the rate of corrosion for aircraft components. This will be less of a problem at ASP.
While the temperature here has been known to reach some extremes, the electronics on board the aircraft should not be negatively affected. In fact, it is currently winter in the southern hemisphere, with temperatures as low as single digits (in celsius), getting only as hot as the low 20s. Thus, extreme heat won’t be a problem in the short term.
Another ideal aspect of regions like this is that the surface is solid enough to support the weight of these massive aircraft. Thus no paving is required of the vast landscape with little worry about damage to the ground. Another well-known region that supports “airplane boneyards” is the Mojave Desert in the United States, with sites in both California and Arizona.
Do you think more of Singapore Airlines’ Airbus A380s will be sent to Alice Springs soon? Why or why not? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.