The A310 is long-range aircraft with a large fuselage designed by Airbus, based on the A300 design. It is similar to the Boeing B767. Its first flight took place on April 3, 1982, and it began operating on April 10, 1983 by the German airline Lufthansa. The A310’s principal clients are FedEx, Pakistan International Airlines, Mahan Air, and most recently Air Transat (January 2017). Since its inception, Airbus has constantly sought to improve the similarities between various models and advanced technology.
The A310 is one of two leading commercial aircraft in the world that have adopted the digital cockpit, with all instruments displayed in the front and on the ceiling. This allows the aircraft to be piloted without a flight engineers. There are two versions of this aircraft: the A310-200 and the A310-300. Because of these innovations, Airbus needed 2.765 billion francs of government investment for the A310-200. For the A310-300 version, Airbus needed a new investment of 690 million francs, which was 60% financed by the government. Between 1982 and 1998 there were 255 orders.
The A310 has also been used for many years by the air force of many countries as a transport aircraft. A few of these aircraft have been converted by the EADS group into a multi-role transport and refueling configuration, equipped with air-to-air refueling capabilities.
Following the considerable success of the A330, orders of the A310 ceased at the end of the 1990s, and production stopped in July 2007.
Developed based on the A300, the A310 was initially designated the A300B10 and was designed as a smaller version of the A300. However, during its development, significant changes were made. The A310’s range is its primary feature. In this regard, the A310-300 exceeds all the A300 models (with only the A300B4-600 surpassing the A310-200 model). It is also distinguished by a maximum take-off weight of up to 164 tons, due to the placement of additional fuel tanks in the center of the aircraft as well as in the horizontal tail, to supply the engines as well as for better centering.
Operation of the A310 has become more and more difficult due to its high fuels consumption as well as the lack of spare parts