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First A380 lands in San Francisco (photos)

The first commercial Lufthansa A380 flight landed in San Francisco complete with its two floors of up to 526 passengers and first class tickets that could cost $16,000.

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Topic: Innovation
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1 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT--With the arrival Tuesday of Lufthansa flight 454 from Frankfurt, Germany, the airline became the first to fly daily service of Airbus' giant A380 to SFO. On Lufthansa flights, the A380, the world's-largest passenger plane, seats 526 people, with 420 in coach on the plane's lower level, and 96 in business class on the upper level. Another 10 sit in luxury in the plane's first class cabin at the front of the upper level.

Lufthansa passenger airlines CEO Carsten Spohr told CNET that the airline is particularly happy to fly to San Francisco because it is what he called a "quality market," meaning it has a high concentration of executives and others who pay to fly business and first class. Spohr pointed to Silicon Valley as a major reason behind this.

Although Lufthansa became the first airline to inaugurate daily service of the A380 to SFO with its flight today, Richard Carcaillet, the director of A380 marketing for Airbus, told CNET that in 2004, SFO became the first American airport to certify that it was ready to accept the giant airplane. It is only because there are so many major air routes in the world that it took four years after the A380 began flying in 2007 for San Francisco to get daily service of the plane.

On June 8, Air France is expected to follow Lufthansa's lead and begin flying A380s into and out of SFO.

Here we see many of the A380's cockpit controls.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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2 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

This is a wide angle view of the A380's cockpit.

Lufthansa passenger airlines CEO Carsten Spohr told CNET that the airline is currently flying seven A380s. In addition to San Francisco, it flies to New York, Johannesburg, Tokyo, and Beijing. And soon, it will add Miami to that list.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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3 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

One of the very rare things about the A380 is that you can look out the window in the coach section of the airplane and being looking up at the underside of the jet bridge connecting the gate to the upper deck of the plane, as seen here from inside the plane.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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4 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

One of the most popular features of the A380, at least in the Lufthansa configuration of the giant plane, is that it has three cameras sending live feeds to the entertainment system. An executive said the most popular of all is the tail camera, which shows a view of the plane from the tail at all times, as seen here.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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5 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A look into one of two cabins reserved for crew rest aboard the A380.

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6 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

This is what first class passengers see as they climb up the stairs to their seats from the lower level.

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7 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

According to Lufthansa, its A380 first-class configuration includes the longest and widest beds in the sky. The beds are six-feet, 10-inches long.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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8 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

The first-class seating includes privacy barriers that can be raised, allowing passengers who pay as much as $16,000 for a round-trip flight between Frankfurt and New York, to feel they are alone if they need that.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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9 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

This is a look at a first-class seat in its normal configuration aboard Lufthansa's A380.

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10 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

Here, we see the first-class seating including a video screen. The plane has only ten such seats.

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11 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

This a look inside the Lufthansa A380's washroom.

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12 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

This is a look at the stairway going from the rear of the lower level of the A380 up to the second level. The stairs go from coach-class on the lower level to business class on the second level, although the galleys on each level are where the stairs begin and end.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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13 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A look down the stairs from the rear of the second level down to the first level.

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14 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A look up the stairs at the first-class section of the Lufthansa A380.

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15 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

Lufthansa has installed a gate that can be put in place to keep coach-class passengers from entering business class on the second level.

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16 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

This is one business class seating area on board the Lufthansa A380 that arrived in San Francisco today.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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17 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

Business-class passengers aboard the A380 have storage bins alongside their seats as well as overhead bins.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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18 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

hese are the remote controls in the business-class section. They control passengers' seats, among other things.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
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19 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A look out the window of the A380 at the rear of its left wing.

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20 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

Visitors pass through the main entryway of the Lufthansa A380.

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21 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A look at a coach-class section of the Lufthansa A380.

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22 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A corridor where several bathrooms are found in coach-class aboard the Lufthansa A380.

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23 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

These are the luggage bins in coach-class.

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24 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A galley in the coach section of the plane.

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25 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A phone available for coach-class passengers.

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26 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

A galley in the rear of business class.

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27 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

This is a screen showing levels for water and waste aboard the Lufthansa A380.

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28 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

Lufthansa passenger airlines CEO Carsten Spohr introduces the crew of the A380 that made the first daily-scheduled flight into SFO Tuesday.

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29 of 29 Andy Smith/ZDNet

Spohr speaks to a crowd of press and various dignitaries, with a proclamation celebrating the inauguration of Lufthansa's A380 flights from the Mayor of San Francisco seen being held behind him.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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