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1 Day: What Will Boeing, Airbus, And Others Showcase In Dubai?

There’s just one day to go until the 2021 edition of the Dubai Airshow opens its doors to aviation professionals around the world. Being the first major in-person event to take place in the industry since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is certainly generating a fair bit of interest.

The Dubai Airshow will open its doors to the world in one day. Photo: Getty Images

With the 2020 Farnborough Air Show and the 2021 Paris Air Show both canceled, the aviation industry will be keen to show off its new innovations from the past couple of years. From Boeing’s 777X to Airbus A380 parts and private jets, there will indeed be something for everybody.

Showing off the 777X

In no particular order, let us start with what Boeing is expected to show off at this year’s airshow. The 2019 airshow was a bit of a muted affair for Boeing. The airline was dealing with the ongoing Boeing 737 MAX grounding, meaning that orders for its only narrowbody product were practically non-existent.

Boeing is going all out with its product line this time around. The most exciting thing being shown off by the American planemaker is the giant 777X, which is making its debut at the airshow.

Boeing, 777X, Dubai Airshow
Boeing has flown the 777X out to Dubai ahead of the upcoming airshow. Photo: Boeing

Sustainability is a massive part of the aviation industry right now, and Boeing won’t ignore it with its product lineup. Etihad has flown its Boeing 787 Greenliner jet into the show, while the Boeing 737 MAX ecoDemonstrator, due to be delivered to Alaska Airlines in due course, has also made an appearance.

What about Airbus?

Boeing’s rival Airbus will also be keen to put on a show at the airshow. The European planemaker also intends to bring a significant portion of its product lineup to the show, from the small but mighty Airbus A220, right up to an Emirates Airbus A380.

According to Airbus, it will have the following aircraft on display,

Airbus A220-300 – airBalticACJ320neo – Acropolis AviationA321LR – Air ArabiaA321LR – Wizz AirAirbus A330-800 – Uganda AirlinesAirbus A350-900 – Airspace Explorer (MSN 2)Airbus A350-900 – Ethiopian AirlinesAirbus A350-1000 – Etihad AirwaysAirbus A380 – Emirates
airBaltic, Airbus A220, Dubai Airshow
airBaltic’s A220s have carried more than 6,500,000 passengers. Photo: airBaltic

Airbus has said that it intends to fly its Airspace Explorer A350 during the daily flight display. Boeing is also expected to show off the 777X during the flying display, though the flying display program is often only released on the day.

Lufthansa Technik’s EXPLORER concept

At the Monaco yacht show earlier this year, Lufthansa Technik teased its EXPLORER private jet concept. At the time, the details of the product were kept fairly under wraps. Now, however, the airline’s MRO subsidiary has released far more information about the project.

On Thursday, Simple Flying took a look at the concept. It takes an Airbus A330 and turns the aircraft into the flying equivalent of a private yacht. Lufthansa Technik’s intention is that anybody owning the jet would fly to where they want to explore and use the aircraft as a base while exploring.

Lufthansa Technik, Airbus A330, Sundeck
Lufthansa Technik’s VIP A330 cabin concept comes with a sundeck. Photo: Lufthansa Technik

Lufthansa Technik showed off the concept with a sundeck extending out over the apron from a main deck cargo door. Some have questioned how enjoyable the balcony would be for all but avgeeks, given that airports usually aren’t quiet environments, especially if they can accept a widebody jet.

The Emirates A380 before and after

Emirates is always one of the stars of the Dubai Airshow, given its prominent place as the primary carrier for Dubai. As such, the airline typically likes to go all out for the airshow. This year it will be bringing a four-class Airbus A380 to Dubai World Central Airport. This will allow the airline to show off its premium economy product for the first time since its launch.

The airline will also be showcasing a slightly less assembled Airbus A380 at the show. The airline has been working with a couple of partners to epicycle its first-ever Airbus A380 at the site. Some up-cycled products such as aircraft windows and a coffee table made from an A380 wheel have already been created. These will be on display at the show, with Emirates taking pre-orders for the unique parts.

Emirates, Airbus A380, Dubai Flyby
Tomorrow, Emirates’ most ambitious livery yet will fly low over the Dubai airshow. Photo: Emirates

Alongside the Airbus A380s in varying states of assembly, the airline will also be bringing a couple of its flight training aircraft. Specifically, a Cirrus SR22 and an Embraer Phenom 100. Of course, the airline will also bring along one of its Boeing 777 aircraft to show off its first class suites.

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Like the Airbus A350 and the Boeing 777X, Emirates has also confirmed that it will participate in the flying display. On the first day of the show, the airline will complete a flypast with Al Fursan, the UAE’s air force display team. An A380 will steal the show with a Boeing 777 aircraft. The Boeing 777 will wear the airline’s special 50th anniversary of the UAE livery, while the Airbus A380 will wear the blue Expo 2020 livery.


We’ve spoken about plane makers, airlines, and MRO companies. Now let’s take a look at the power behind the aircraft shown off at the show. Like Boeing, the main focus for Rolls-Royce at the 2021 Dubai Airshow will be sustainability. At Simple Flying’s Future Flying Forum on Thursday, we got to learn about the company’s upcoming UltraFan Engine.

At the Airshow, Rolls-Royce will show off how it is working towards the electrification of flight, focusing on its Accel electric demonstrator. However, the engine manufacturer will also show off how it is working to increase the uptake of Sustainable Aviation Fuels, with an aim to get every Trent engine certified to run on 100% SAFs.

Rolls Royce, Trent 1000, Sustainable Aviation Fuel
Rolls-Royce wants iwe’vetire Trent product line to run on 100% SAFs by 2023. Photo: Rolls Royc1

Of course, there are hundreds of companies at the Dubai Airshow this year, and we’ve only mentioned a handful. Simple Flying will be at the Dubai Airshow to bring readers the latest developments and aircraft tours and more behind-the-scenes action.

What are you most excited to hear about from the Dubai Airshow? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

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