World's biggest airliner loses wingtip to a building in Paris airport


An Airbus 380 superjumbo has lost its wingtip in a taxiing collision with a building at Le Bourget airport, where the Paris Air Show is taking place.

The collision follows a similar incident in at JFK airport in New York earlier this year when a private jet was spun round after it was struck by the wing of an A380.

The aircraft had been scheduled for demonstration flights during the show but these have now been cancelled, according to show spokesman Alexander Reinhardt.

The Airbus A400M military transport plane also had to cancel a demonstration flight because of what the manufacturer described as a minor gearbox problem, although the aircraft will still make a fly-over during President Nicolas Sarkozy's visit to the air show today, Reinhardt added.

The grounded flights and delays cast a shadow over Airbus as it takes on its traditional rival Boeing Co. at the air show, where both are expected to announce a string of orders as they vie for the position of biggest plane-maker in the world.

According to the Daily Mail, Qatar Airways announced an order for six Boeing 777 planes in a $1.7 billion deal at the start of the show on Monday.

More than 2,100 exhibitors from 45 countries have signed up to take part in the weeklong event showcasing both commercial and defense aircraft.

And, beyond the rivalry, the search for more environmentally friendly aircraft appears to be a major theme of this year's Paris Air Show, the world's largest and oldest aviation showcase.

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