The BAe 146 (also known as the Avro RJ – from “Avro Regional Jet” since 1993) is a mid-sized commercial aircraft, produced by BAE Systems. This short-haul airliner specializes in urban airports: a high approach slope and a low approach speed. These two requirements are aimed at reducing noise pollution around airports located in the middle of a city. It is also a short take-off and landing aircraft – it can land on relatively short distances.
It had its first flight on September 3, 1981 and entered service in 1983.
The passengers are divided into two rows, one row of two seats and one of three seats for economy class. The Avro RJ 85 can comfortably carry up to 100 passengers. An on-board entertainment system can be integrated into the seats or installed on partitions below the top storage compartments. Its cabin can be reconfigured to better satisfy all the requirements of the airlines. This flexibility is a decisive factor and is much appreciated by airlines.
It has four jet engines under the wings located on the top of the fuselage (and not in the middle or below as is typical on civil commercial aircraft).
The BAe 146 has relatively large flaps (trailing edge flaps only) and airbrakes for its size, allowing it to take off and land across short distances and eliminate the need for heavier thrust reversers and noise. It is one of the quietest aircraft on the market, nicknamed the Jet Murmure (the Whisper Jet). Furthermore, two tailpipes allow it to brake more efficiently while complying with the most stringent anti-noise standards.
A variant of this aircraft is the official transport of the Queen of England, configured as a BAE VIP.