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A340 Family

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Category: Aircraft Family Aircraft Family
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Airbus A340 Family


Long and ultra long range passenger jet manufactured by AIRBUS. Airbus A340 family includes the following modifications:

Aircraft Family Members
ICAO Type Designator Name Length (m)
AIRBUS A-340-200 AIRBUS A-340-200 59.4 m
AIRBUS A-340-300 AIRBUS A-340-300 63.69 m
AIRBUS A-340-500 AIRBUS A-340-500 67.93 m
AIRBUS A-340-600 AIRBUS A-340-600 75.36 m


Aircraft A340-200 A340-300 A340-500 A340-600
Overall Length 59.4 m194.882 ft
63.69 m208.957 ft
67.93 m222.867 ft
75.36 m247.244 ft
Overall Length 60.3 m197.835 ft
60.3 m197.835 ft
63.45 m208.169 ft
63.45 m208.169 ft
Engines 4 x CFM56-5C4 (141kN) or
4 x CFM 56-5C3 (147kN) turbofans.
4 x CFM56-5C4/P (154kN) turbofans. 4 x R-R Trent 553 (236kN) turbofans. 4 x R-R Trent 556 (249kN) turbofans.
Typical passenger seating 239 295 313 380
Range (w/max. passengers) 6,700 nm12,408,400 m
12,408.4 km
40,709,973.783 ft
7,400 nm13,704,800 m
13,704.8 km
44,963,254.626 ft
9,000 nm16,668,000 m
16,668 km
54,685,039.41 ft
7,900 nm14,630,800 m
14,630.8 km
48,001,312.371 ft
Maximum takeoff weight 275 tonnes275,000 kg
275 tonnes275,000 kg
372 tonnes372,000 kg
368 tonnes368,000 kg

Accidents & Serious Incidents involving A340 Family

  • A342, Perth Australia, 2005 (On 24 April 2005, an Airbus A340-200 landed short of the temporarily displaced runway threshold at Perth in good daylight visibility despite their prior awareness that there was such a displacement. The Investigation concluded that the crew had failed to correctly identify the applicable threshold markings because the markings provided were insufficiently clear to them and probably also because of the inappropriately low intensity setting of the temporary PAPI. No other Serious Incidents were reported during the same period of runway works.)
  • A320 / B789 / A343, San Francisco CA USA, 2017 (On 7 July 2017 the crew of an Airbus A320, cleared for an approach and landing on runway 28R at San Francisco in night VMC, lined up for the visual approach for which it had been cleared on the occupied parallel taxiway instead of the runway extended centreline and only commenced a go-around at the very last minute, having descended to about 60 feet agl whilst flying over two of the four aircraft on the taxiway. The Investigation determined that the sole direct cause of the event was the poor performance of the A320 flight crew.)
  • A343 / B744, London Heathrow UK, 2007 (On 15 October 2007, an Airbus 340-300 being operated on a scheduled passenger flight by Air Lanka with a heavy crew in the flight deck was taxiing towards the departure runway at London Heathrow at night in normal visibility when the right wing tip hit and sheared off the left hand winglet of a stationary British Airways Boeing 747-400 which was in a queue on an adjacent taxiway. The Airbus 340 sustained only minor damage to the right winglet and navigation light.)
  • A343 / B744, en-route, south of Newfoundland Canada, 1998 (On 20 July 1998, after an ATC error south of Newfoundland, an Air France A340 and an Air Canada 747-400 were on directly converging tracks and at the same level. Collision was avoided by the correct actioning of coordinated TCAS RAs by both aircraft.)
  • A343 / B752, London Heathrow UK, 1995 (On 23 November 1995, in normal daylight visibility, an Airbus A340-300 being operated by Gulf Air on a scheduled international passenger flight from London Heathrow taxied past a Boeing 757-200 being operated by British Airways on a scheduled domestic passenger flight and also departing from London Heathrow which had stopped on a diverging taxiway within the departure holding area for Runway 27R such that the wing tip of the Airbus impacted the tail fin of other aircraft. Two of the 378 occupants of the two aircraft suffered minor injuries and both aircraft were damaged. Passengers were deplaned uneventfully from both aircraft.)
  • A343 / B763, Barcelona Spain, 2014 (On 5 July 2014, an Airbus A340-300 taxiing for departure at Barcelona was cleared across an active runway in front of an approaching Boeing 767 with landing clearance on the same runway by a Ground Controller unaware that the runway was active. Sighting by both aircraft resulted in an accelerated crossing and a very low go around. The Investigation noted the twice-daily runway configuration change made due to noise abatement reasons was imminent. It was also noted that airport procedure involved use of stop bars even on inactive runways and that their operation was then the responsibility of ground controllers.)
  • A343 / GLID, en-route, north of Waldshut-Tiengen southwest Germany, 2012 (On 11 August 2012, the augmenting crew member in the flight deck of an Airbus A340 about to join final approach to Zurich in Class 'C' airspace as cleared suddenly saw a glider on a collision course with the aircraft. The operating crew were alerted and immediately executed a "pronounced avoiding manoeuvre" and the two aircraft passed at approximately the same level with approximately 260 metres separation. The Investigation attributed the conflict to airspace incursion by the glider and issue of a clearance to below MRVA to the A340 and noted the absence of relevant safety nets.)
  • A343 / RJ1H, Copenhagen Denmark, 2016 (On 26 December 2016, the wing of an Airbus A340-300 being repositioned by towing at Copenhagen as cleared hit an Avro RJ100 which had stopped short of its stand when taxiing due to the absence of the expected ground crew. The RJ100 had been there for twelve minutes at the time of the collision. The Investigation attributed the collision to differing expectations of the tug driver, the Apron controller and the RJ100 flight crew within an overall context of complacency on the part of the tug driver whilst carrying out what would have been regarded as a routine, non-stressful task.)
  • A343, Anchorage AK USA, 2002 (On 25 January 2002, in VMC at night, an Airbus A340-300 being operated by China Airlines successfully took-off from a parallel taxiway adjacent to the departure runway at Anchorage Alaska which was of less length than the calculated airplane take-off distance required.)
  • A343, Auckland New Zealand, 2013 (On 18 May 2013 an Airbus A340 with the Captain acting as 'Pilot Flying' commenced its night take off from Auckland in good visibility on a fully lit runway without the crew recognising that it was lined up with the runway edge. After continuing ahead for approximately 1400 metres, the aircraft track was corrected and the take off completed. The incident was not reported to ATC and debris on the runway from broken edge lights was not discovered until a routine inspection almost three hours later. The Investigation concluded that following flights were put at risk by the failure to report.)
  • A343, Bogota Colombia, 2017 (On 11 March 2017, contrary to crew expectations based on their pre-flight takeoff performance calculation, an Airbus 340-300 taking off from the 3,800 metre-long at Bogata only became airborne just before the end of the runway. The Investigation found that the immediate reason for this was the inadequate rate of rotation achieved by the Training Captain performing the takeoff. However, it was also found that the operator’s average A340-300 rotation rate was less than would be achieved using handling recommendations which themselves would not achieve the expected performance produced by the Airbus takeoff performance software that reflected type certification findings.)
  • A343, Changi Singapore, 2007 (On 30 May 2007, at about 0555 hours local time, the crew of an Airbus A340-300 had to apply (Take-off Go Around) power and rotate abruptly at a high rate to become airborne while taking off from Runway 20C at Singapore Changi Airport, when they noticed the centreline lights were indicating the impending end of the available runway. The crew had calculated the take-off performance based on the full TORA (Take-off Run Available) of 4,000 m because they were unaware of the temporary shortening of Runway 20C to 2,500 m due to resurfacing works.)
  • A343, Frankfurt Germany, 2008 (On 21 August 2008, an Airbus A340-300 being operated by an undisclosed operator by a German-licensed flight crew on a scheduled passenger flight from Teheran to Frankfurt collided with a stationary bus with only the driver on board whilst approaching the allocated parking gate in normal daylight visibility. The No 4 engine impacted the bus roof as shown in the photograph below reproduced from the official report. None of the occupants of either the aircraft or the bus were injured.)
  • A343, Helsinki Finland, 2009 (On 22 June 2009, an Airbus A340-300 being operated by Finnair suffered a single tyre failure during take off on a scheduled passenger flight to Helsinki and malfunction assessed as consequential by the flight crew occurred to the hydraulic system. The flight proceeded to destination and carried out a daylight landing there in normal visibility without any further aircraft damage. Because of a further deterioration in the status of the aircraft hydraulic systems during the landing roll, the aircraft was stopped on the runway and then towed into the gate. No persons were injured in this incident.)
  • A343, Hong Kong China, 2010 (On 27 November 2010, a Finnair Airbus A340-300 unintentionally attempted a night take off from Hong Kong in good visibility from the taxiway parallel to the runway for which take off clearance had been given. ATC observed the error and instructed the crew to abandon the take off, which they then did. The Investigation attributed the crew error partly to distraction. It was considered that the crew had become distracted and that supporting procedures and process at the Operator were inadequate.)
  • A343, London Heathrow UK, 1997 (On 5 November 1997, an Airbus A340-300 operated by Virgin Atlantic airlines experienced a landing gear malfunction. The crew executed a successful partial gear up landing at London Heathrow.)
  • A343, London Heathrow, UK 2012 (On 5 February 2012, an Airbus A340-300 started its takeoff from an intermediate point on the runway for which no regulated takeoff weight information was available and had only become airborne very close to the end of the runway and then climbed only very slowly. The Investigation found that as the full length of the planned departure runway was not temporarily unavailable, ATC had offered either the intersection subsequently used or the full length of the available parallel runway and that despite the absence of valid performance data for the intersection, the intersection had been used.)
  • A343, Nairobi Kenya, 2008 (On 27 April 2008 an Airbus A340-300 crew lost previously-acquired visual reference in fog on a night auto ILS into Nairobi but continued to a touchdown which occurred with the aircraft heading towards the edge of the runway following an inappropriate rudder input. The left main gear departed the paved surface and a go around was initiated and a diversion made. The event was attributed to a delay in commencing the go around. No measured RVR from any source was passed by ATC although it was subsequently found to have been recorded as I excess of Cat 1 limits throughout.)
  • A343, Rio de Janeiro Galeão Brazil, 2011 (On 8 December 2011, an Airbus A340-300 did not become airborne until it had passed the end of the takeoff runway at Rio de Janeiro Galeão, which was reduced in length due to maintenance. The crew were unaware of this fact nor the consequent approach lighting, ILS antennae and aircraft damage, and completed their intercontinental flight. The Investigation found that the crew had failed to use the full available runway length despite relevant ATIS and NOTAM information and that even using rated thrust from where they began their takeoff, they would not have become airborne before the end of the runway.)
  • A343, Tabriz Iran, 2013 (On 18 April 2013, an Airbus A340-300 was unintentionally taxied off the side of the runway during a 180° turn after backtracking the departure runway at Tabriz at night. The Investigation found that the prevailing wet runway conditions meant that the runway width alone was insufficient for the turn and full advantage had not been taken of a wide taxiway at the runway displaced threshold. It was also found that the technique used to turn had not been optimum and that the runway involved was for daylight use only and had a strength rating not compatible with A340 use.)
  • A343, Toronto Canada, 2005 (On 2 August 2005, an Air France Airbus A340 attempted a daylight landing at destination on a rain-soaked runway during an active thunderstorm and overran for 300 metres ending up in a ravine from where, despite its destruction by fire, all occupants escaped. The Investigation recommendations focussed mainly on crew decision making in adverse weather conditions and issues related to the consequences of such an overrun on survivability.)
  • A343, en-route, mid North Atlantic Ocean, 2011 (On 22 July 2011 an Air France A340-300 en route over the North Atlantic at FL350 in night IMC encountered moderate turbulence following "inappropriate use of the weather radar" which led to an overspeed annunciation followed by the aircraft abruptly pitching up and gaining over 3000 feet in less than a minute before control was regained and it was returned to the cleared level. There Investigation concluded that "the incident was due to inadequate monitoring of the flight parameters, which led to the failure to notice AP disengagement and the level bust, following a reflex action on the controls.”)
  • A343, vicinity Paris CDG France, 2012 (On 13 March 2012, an A340-300 crew cleared for a Cat 3 ILS approach at Paris CDG with LVP in force failed to descend at a rate which would allow the aircraft to capture the ILS GS and at 2nm from the runway, when still 2500 feet above runway height, the ILS GS mode engaged on a false upper lobe of about 10° and as a result of the consequent rapid pitch up and speed reduction, aircraft control was almost lost. After a period of further confusion, a go around was initiated and the subsequent approach was uneventful.)
  • A332/A345, Khartoum Sudan, 2010 (On 30 September 2010, an A330-200 was about to take off from Khartoum at night in accordance with its clearance when signalling from a hand-held flashlight and a radio call from another aircraft led to this not taking place. The other (on-stand) aircraft crew had found that they had been hit by the A330 as it had taxied past en route to the runway. The Investigation found that although there was local awareness that taxiway use and the provision of surface markings at Khartoum did not ensure safe clearance between aircraft, this was not being communicated by NOTAM or ATIS.)
  • A345, Melbourne Australia, 2009 (On 20 March 2009 an Airbus A340-500, operated by Emirates, commenced a take-off roll for a normal reduced-thrust take-off on runway 16 at Melbourne Airport. The attempt to get the aircraft airborne resulted in a tail strike and an overrun because insufficient thrust had been set based upon an incorrect flight crew data entry.)
  • A320 / A346, en-route, Eastern Indian Ocean, 2012 (On 18 January 2012, ATC error resulted in two aircraft on procedural clearances in oceanic airspace crossing the same waypoint within an estimated 2 minutes of each other without the prescribed 1000 feet vertical separation when the prescribed minimum separation was 15 minutes unless that vertical separation existed. By the time ATC identified the loss of separation and sent a CPDLC message to the A340 to descend in order to restore separation, the crew advised that such action was already being taken. The Investigation identified various organisational deficiencies relating to the provision of procedural service by the ANSP concerned.)
  • A346, London Heathrow UK, 2009 (On 12 December 2009, an Airbus A340-600 being operated by Virgin Atlantic Airways on a scheduled passenger flight departing from London Heathrow in night VMC was slow to rotate and the aircraft settled at an initial climb speed below VLS - defined as the lowest selectable speed which provides an appropriate margin above the stall speed. This prompted the PF to reduce the aircraft pitch attitude in order to accelerate which resulted in a poor rate of climb of between 500 and 600 fpm. The flaps were retracted on schedule and the aircraft continued its climb. At no time was full takeoff thrust selected. Later in the climb, the crew looked again at the take off data calculation and realised that they had made the departure with insufficient thrust set and using Vr and V2 speeds which were too low for the actual aircraft weight. The flight to the planned destination was completed.)
  • A346, Quito Ecuador, 2007 (On 31 August 2007 an Airbus A340-600 made a hard landing with drift /side slip present after a making a circling approach in good visibility with a relatively high cloudbase and was disabled on the runway after sustaining significant damage to the landing gear. It was found that the visual circling segment had been flown too close to the runway and the subsequent final approach had been unstabilised with touchdown being made at an excessive rate of descent. The destination risk assessment carried out by the airline involved was found to inadequate as was pilot training for the approach flown.)
  • A346, Toulouse France, 2007 (During ground running of engines, the aircraft impacted a concrete wall at a ground speed of 30 kts following unintended movement and the aircraft was wrecked.)
  • A346, en route, eastern Indian Ocean, 2013 (On 3 February 2013, an Airbus A340 crew in the cruise in equatorial latitudes at FL350 in IMC failed to use their weather radar properly and entered an area of ice crystal icing outside the prevailing icing envelope. A short period of unreliable airspeed indications on displays dependent on the left side pitot probes followed with a brief excursion above FL350 and reversion to Alternate Law. Excessive vibration on the left engine then began and a diversion was made. The engine remained in use and was subsequently found undamaged with the fault attributed to ice/water ingress due to seal failure.)
  • A346, en-route, Amsterdam Netherlands, 2005 (On 8 February 2005, a Virgin Atlantic Airways A340-600 experienced in-flight fuel management problem which led to loss of power of No 1 engine and temporary power loss of No 4. The captain decided to divert to Amsterdam where the aircraft landed safely on three engines.)
  • A346, en-route, northern Turkey, 2019 (On 21 August 2019, an Airbus A340-600 encountered sudden-onset moderate to severe clear air turbulence whilst in the cruise at FL 360 over northern Turkey which resulted in a serious passenger injury. The Investigation found that the flight was above and in the vicinity of convective clouds exhibiting considerable vertical development but noted that neither the en-route forecast nor current alerting had given any indication that significant turbulence was likely to be encountered. It was noted the operator’s flight crew had not been permitted to upload weather data in flight but since this event, that restriction had been removed.)
  • AT43/A346, Zurich Switzerland, 2010 (On 18 June 2010, an ATR 42 began a daylight take off on runway 28 at Zurich without ATC clearance at the same time as an A340 began take off from intersecting runway 16 with an ATC clearance. ATC were unaware of this until alerted to the situation by the crew of another aircraft which was waiting to take off from runway 28, after which the ATR 42 was immediately instructed to stop and did so prior to the runway intersection whilst the A340 continued departure on runway 16 .)

Further Reading

For further information, visit the Airbus website Airbus reference document which provide to airlines, MROs, airport planners and operators the general dimensions of the aircraft, as well as the necessary information for ramp, servicing operations or maintenance preparation: