Britain’s Most Successful Commercial Jetliner
The British Aerospace 146, also known as the BAe 146, is a regional airliner manufactured by British Aerospace (now known as BAE Systems). The aircraft was designed to serve short-haul routes and was developed in the 1980s.
It was the first commercial jetliner to be built by a British company, and it went on to become one of the most successful commercial jetliners in British history.
History of the BAe 146
The BAe 146 was developed in the 1980s to respond to the growing demand for regional air travel. British Aerospace (BAe) saw an opportunity to enter the market and began work on the design of the aircraft. The BAe 146 was the first commercial jetliner to be developed and built by a British company, and it was the result of a collaboration between several British aerospace firms.
The BAe 146 was designed to be a regional airliner that could serve short-haul routes and operate from small airports. It was a medium-sized aircraft with a capacity of between 70 and 112 passengers, depending on the configuration. The aircraft was powered by four turbofan engines and ranged up to 2,000 miles.
The BAe 146 made its first flight in 1981, and it entered commercial service in 1983 with Dan-Air, a British charter airline. Over the next few years, the aircraft proved to be popular with airlines and passengers alike, and it went on to become one of the most successful commercial jetliners in British history.
Features of the BAe 146
One of the key features of the BAe 146 was its ability to operate from small airports and runways. The aircraft was designed with short-field performance, and it could take off and land on relatively short runways. This made it ideal for serving regional airports and destinations not served by larger jetliners.
The BAe 146 was also known for its quiet operation. The aircraft was fitted with hush kits, which reduced the engine noise, making it one of the quietest commercial jetliners in operation at the time. This made it popular with airlines that operated in noise-sensitive areas, such as near residential areas or national parks.
The BAe 146 was also a reliable and efficient aircraft. It had a good safety record, and it was able to operate with a high degree of reliability. The aircraft was also fuel-efficient, which helped to keep operating costs low for airlines.
The BAe 146’s Success and Legacy
The BAe 146 proved to be a highly successful commercial jetliner, with over 400 aircraft being produced throughout its production. It was operated by a number of major airlines, including British Airways, Qantas, and American Airlines.
In addition to its success in the commercial sector, the BAe 146 also saw use in a number of other roles. It was adapted for use as a cargo aircraft, as well as a VIP transport and air ambulance.
Despite its success, the production of the BAe 146 came to an end in 2002. However, many aircraft are still in operation today, with a number of operators offering passenger and cargo services using the BAe 146.
Overall, the BAe 146 remains one of Britain’s most successful commercial jetliners, with its versatility, cost-effectiveness, and unique design features making it a popular choice among airlines.