Concorde the Supersonic Aircraft



Aérospatiale-BAC Concorde supersonic transport (SST), along with the Tupolev Tu-144, was one of only two models of supersonic passenger airliners to have seen commercial service so far.

public domain by  Arpingstone

The last ever flight of any Concorde, 26th November 2003. The aircraft (G-BOAF) is overflying Filton airfield at two thousand feet to take a wide circle over the Bristol area before the final landing on the Filton (Bristol) runway from which she first flew in 1979, and from which the first British Concorde flew in 1969.

General features

Concorde had a cruise speed of Mach 2.02 (around 2170 km/h or 1,350 mph) and a maximum cruise altitude of 60,000 feet (18 300 metres) with a delta wing configuration and a reheat-equipped evolution of the engines originally developed for the Avro Vulcan strategic bomber. The engines were built by Rolls-Royce. Concorde was the first civil airliner to be equipped with an analogue fly-by-wire flight control system. Commercial flights, operated by British Airways and Air France, began on 21 January 1976 and ended on 24 October 2003, with the last "retirement" flight on 26 November that year.


In the late 1950s the United Kingdom, France, United States and Soviet Union were all considering developing supersonic transport.

Britain's Bristol Aeroplane Company and France's Sud Aviation were both working on designs, called the Type 233 and Super-Caravelle respectively. Both were largely funded by their respective governments as a way of gaining some foothold in the aircraft market that was until then dominated by the United States.


Great Promotional Film on Concorde by British Airways

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The designs were both ready to start prototype construction in the early 1960s, but the cost was so great that the companies (and governments) decided to join forces. The development project was negotiated as an international treaty between Britain and France rather than a commercial agreement between companies. This included a clause, originally asked for by Britain, on penalties for cancellation (it turned out that Britain was the country that tried to get out of it). A draft treaty was signed on 28 November 1962. By this time both companies had been merged into new ones, and the Concorde project was thus a part of the British Aircraft Corporation and Aerospatiale. The consortium secured orders for over 100 new airliners from the leading airlines of the time. Pan Am, BOAC and Air France were the launch customers with six Concordes each. Airlines in the order book included: Panair do Brasil, Japan Airlines, Lufthansa, American Airlines, United Airlines, Air Canada, Braniff, Iran Air, Qantas, CAAC, Middle East Airlines and TWA.

The aircraft was initially referred to in Britain as "Concord". In 1967 the British Government Minister for Technology, Tony Benn announced that it would change the spelling to "Concorde" to match the French spelling, much to the chagrin of Prime Minister Harold Wilson. This created a nationalistic uproar but it died down when Benn stated that the suffixed "e" represented "Excellence, England, Europe and Entente (Cordiale)". In his memoirs, he recounts a tale of a letter from an irate Scotsman asking how the 'E' represents Scotland, given Scotland's contribution of providing the nosecone for the aircraft. Benn replied "E stands also for Ecosse", the French name for Scotland

Construction of the first two prototypes began in February 1965. Concorde 001 was built by Aerospatiale at Toulouse and Concorde 002 by BAC at Filton, Bristol. Concorde 001 took off for the first test flight from Toulouse on 2 March 1969 and the first supersonic flight followed on 1 October. As the flight programme of the first development aircraft progressed, 001 started off on a sales and demonstration tour beginning on 4 September 1971. Concorde 002 followed suit in 2 June 1972 with a sales tour of the Middle and Far East. Concorde 002 made the first visit to the United States in 1973, landing at the new Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport to commemorate its opening.

Concorde Restoration

A group of French volunteer engineers is keeping one of the youngest Concordes (F-BTSD) in near-airworthy condition at the Le Bourget Air and Space Museum in Paris. In February 2010, it was announced that they intend to restore F-BTSD's engines so it can taxi.

Although only used for spares after being retired from test flying and trials work in 1981, Concorde G-BBDG was dismantled and transported by road from Filton then restored from essentially a shell at the Brooklands Museum in Surrey.

On 29 May 2010, it was reported that a group comprising the British Save Concorde Group and the French Olympus 593 had begun work on inspecting the engines of a Concorde at Le Bourget Air and Space Museum, with the intent to restore the plane to be able to fly again in demonstrations and air shows. Flying in the opening ceremony for the 2012 London Olympics is also a goal.

These trips led to orders for over 70 aircraft. However, a combination of factors caused a sudden cascade of order cancellations, including the 1970s oil crisis, acute financial difficulties of the partner airlines, a spectacular crash of the competing Soviet Tupolev Tu-144, and environmental issues such as sonic boom noise and pollution. Air France and British Airways ended up as the only buyers. The governments continued to take a cut of any profits made, in the case of BA 80% of the profit was kept by the government, whilst the cost of buying the aircraft was covered by a loan offered by the government.[1]

The United States had cancelled its supersonic transport (SST) program in 1971. Two designs had been submitted; the Lockheed L-2000, looking like a scaled-up Concorde, lost out to the Boeing 2707, which had originally been intended to be faster, carry 300 passengers, and feature a swing-wing design. It was suggested in France and the United Kingdom that part of the American opposition to Concorde on grounds of noise pollution was in fact orchestrated or at least encouraged by the United States Government out of spite at not being able to propose a viable competitor. However, other countries, such as Malaysia, also ruled out Concorde supersonic overflights due to noise issues.

Both European airlines operated demonstrations and test flights from 1974 onwards. The testing of Concorde set records which are still not surpassed; it undertook 5,335 flight hours in the prototype, preproduction, and first production aircraft alone. A total of 2,000 test hours were supersonic. This equates to approximately four times as many as for similarly sized subsonic commercial aircraft.

Technological features

Many features common in early 21st century airliners were first used in the Concorde.

For high speed and optimization of flight:

Double-delta (ogee) shaped wings

Rolls-Royce/Snecma Olympus turbojet engines with reheat (afterburners) and variable inlet ramps

Supercruise capability

Thrust-by-wire engines, ancestor of today's FADEC controlled engines

Droop-nose section for good landing visibility

For weight-saving and enhanced performance:

Mach 2.04 for optimum fuel consumption (supersonic drag minimum, whilst jet engines are more efficient at high speed)

Mostly aluminium construction for low weight and relatively conventional build (higher speeds would have ruled out aluminium)

Full-regime autopilot and auto throttle allowing "hands off" control of the aircraft from climb out to landing

Fully electrically-controlled analogue fly-by-wire flight controls systems

Multifunction flight control surfaces

High-pressure hydraulic system of 28 MPa (4,000 lbf/in²) for lighter hydraulic systems components

Fully electrically controlled analog brake-by-wire system

Pitch trim by shifting fuel around the fuselage for centre-of-gravity control

Parts milled from single alloy billet reducing the part number count

Concorde's primary legacy is the experience gained in its design and manufacture which later became the basis of the Airbus consortium. Snecma Moteurs, for example, got its first entry into civil engines with Concorde, which opened the way for it to establish the CFM International with GE and produce the successful CFM International CFM56 series engines.

Although Concorde was a technological marvel when introduced into service in the early 1970s, thirty years later its cockpit cluttered with analogue dials and switches looked dated. With no competition, there was no commercial pressure to upgrade Concorde with enhanced avionics or passenger comforts, as occurred with other airliners of the same vintage (e.g. Boeing 747).

The primary partners, BAC (later to become BAE Systems) and Aerospatiale (later to become EADS), are the joint owners of Concorde's type certificate. Responsibility for the Type Certificate transferred to Airbus with formation of Airbus SAS.

Main mechanical problems during design


Due to the high speeds at which Concorde travelled, large forces were applied to the entire aircraft structure during banks and turns. This caused twisting and the distortion of the aircraft's structure. This was resolved by the neutralization of the outwards elevons. Only the innermost elevons which are attached to the strongest area of the wings are active.

Movement of centre of pressure

When any aircraft passes through the sound barrier, the centre of pressure shifts rearward. This causes a pitch down of the nose as the centre of gravity remains in the same place. This could be countered by the use of trim. However at such high speeds this would cause a dramatic increase in the drag of the aircraft. Therefore the distribution of fuel along the aircraft is shifted during acceleration and deceleration to move the centre of gravity, effectively acting as trim. The engineers also designed the wings in a specific manner to reduce this shift. However, there was still a shift of about 2 m.

Engine intake airspeed

All engines can only intake air at around Mach 0.5; the air therefore needs to be slowed from Mach 2.0. This was done by a pair of ramps and an auxiliary flap, whose location was moved during flight to slow the air down. The ramps were at the top of the engine compartment and moved down, and the auxiliary flap moved both up and down allowing air to flow in or out. During take off when the engine's air demand was high, the ramps were flat at the top and the auxiliary flap was in, allowing more air to enter the engine. As the aircraft approached Mach 0.7 the flap closed; at Mach 1.3 the ramps came into effect, removing air from the engines which was then used in the presurization of the cabin. At Mach 2.0 the ramps had covered half their total possible distance. They also helped reduce the work done by the compressors as they not only compressed the air but also increased the air temperature.

During an engine failure, the engine's air demand is virtually zero. This caused large problems on conventional aircraft; not only has the aircraft lost thrust on that side but the engine acts as a large source of drag causing the aircraft to bank in the direction of the engine which has failed. This could cause problems at supersonic speeds. This was countered with the opening of the auxiliary flap and the full extension of the ramps giving a large down-force applied by the engine pushing the wing up and countering the effect of the failed engine.

Concorde: A Photographic History (Hardcover) by Jonathan Falconer from

"a stunning collection of colour photographs that portray Concorde from its first flights in 1969 to its swansong in 2003. "

Increased radiation exposure

Due to the high altitude which Concorde cruised at (about 60,000 ft), passengers on board received twice as much radiation as those travelling on a subsonic flight. However, due to the reduced flight time, the overall dosage was less than a conventional flight. Unusual solar activity could lead to an increase in radiation exposure, therefore there were two additional instruments fitted on the flight deck, the radiometer and the rate of decrease in radiation. If the radiation level was too high, Concorde would descend to below 47,000 feet, or until it reached a safe altitude. The rate of decrease indicator indicated whether the aircraft needed to descend further decreasing the amount of time the aircraft was at an unsafe altitude.

Scheduled flights

Scheduled flights started on 21 January 1976 on the London-Bahrain and Paris-Rio routes. The U.S. Congress had just banned Concorde landings in the US, mainly due to citizen protest over sonic booms, preventing launch on the coveted transatlantic routes.

When the US ban was lifted in February for over-water supersonic flight, New York banned Concorde locally. Left with little choice on the destination, AF and BA started transatlantic services to Washington, D.C. on 24 May. Finally, in late 1977, the noise concerns of New York residents gave way to the advantages of Concorde traffic, and scheduled service from Paris and London to New York's John F. Kennedy airport started on 22 November 1977. Flights operated by BA were coded 'BA001' through 'BA004'. (It was noted in the noise report that Air Force One, a Boeing 707, was in fact louder than Concorde at subsonic speeds and for take off and landing.)

While commercial jets take 7 hours to fly from New York to Paris, the average flight time on the transatlantic routes was just under 3.5 hours. Up to 2003, Air France and British Airways continued to operate the New York services daily. Additionally, Concorde flew to Barbados's Grantley Adams International Airport during the winter holiday season and, occasionally, to charter destinations such as Rovaniemi, Finland. On 1 November 1986 a chartered Concorde circumnavigated the world in 31 hours and 51 minutes.

For a brief period in 1977, and again from 1979 to 1981, British Airways and Singapore Airlines used a shared Concorde for flights between Bahrain and Singapore Paya Lebar Airport. The aircraft, G-BOAD, was painted in Singapore Airways livery on the port side and British Airways livery on the starboard side. The service was discontinued after three months because of noise complaints from the Malaysian government; it could only be reinstated when a new route bypassing Malaysian airspace was designed. However, an ongoing dispute with India prevented the Concorde from reaching supersonic speeds in Indian airspace, so the route was eventually declared not viable. From September 1978 to November 1982 during the Mexican oil boom, Air France flew the Concorde twice weekly to Mexico City's Benito Juárez International Airport via Washington D.C.. The economic crisis caused the cancellation of the route to Mexico City and the last flights were almost empty. From time to time, the Concorde came back on chartered flights with stops in Mexico City and Acapulco.

Between 1984 and 1991 British Airways flew a thrice weekly Concorde service to London from Miami. This was accomplished subsonically by extending the Dulles flight to Miami and returning the same way.

From 1978 to 1980 Braniff International Airways leased 10 Concordes [1], five each from British Airways and Air France. These were used on subsonic flights from Dallas-Fort Worth to IAD, feeding the routes of BA and AF to London and Paris. The aircraft were registered in both the United States and their home countries for legal reasons: a sticker would cover up each aircraft's European registration while it was being operated by Braniff. On DFW-IAD flights, the Concordes had Braniff flight crews although they maintained their native airline livery. However, the flights were not profitable for Braniff and were usually less than 50% booked, which forced Braniff to end its term as the only U.S. Concorde operator in May of 1980.

Passenger experience

Concorde provided an enhanced passenger experience compared to other subsonic commercial airliners. British Airways and Air France configured the passenger cabin as a single class with around 100 seats — four seats across with a central aisle. Despite being a luxury class, some passengers were surprised to find the cabin a little cramped. Headroom in the central aisle was barely six feet (1.8 m), and the leather seats were unusually narrow with legroom comparable to economy class on large airliners.

In the 1990s features which were common in the first class and business class cabins of a long haul Boeing 747 flight such as video entertainment, rotating or reclining seats and perambulatory areas, were absent from Concorde. However the flight time from London to New York of approximately 3.5 hrs more than made up for the lack of those features. There was usually a plasma display at the front of the cabin showing either the altitude, the air temperature or current speed in Mach number. With almost no room for overhead storage, even carry-on luggage was severely restricted.

To make up for these missing features, service on the Concorde was to be "first class" in every sense of the word. Orders for drinks or other needs were met instantly. Meals were served using specially designed compact Wedgwood crockery with short silver cutlery.

Many have described the atmosphere aboard the aircraft as a party atmosphere, with most of the passengers feeling excited to be travelling on a supersonic aircraft. The experience of passing through the sound barrier was less dramatic than might be expected. The moment would be announced by one of the pilots, and accompanied by a slight surge in acceleration.

At twice the normal cruising altitude, turbulence was rare and the view from the windows clearly showed the curvature of the Earth. During the supersonic cruise, although the outside air temperature was typically -60 °C, air friction would heat the external skin at the front of the plane to around +120 °C making the windows warm to the touch and producing a noticeable temperature gradient along the length of the cabin, and causing the plane to expand during flight in length by up to thirty centimetres (twelve inches).

Most remarkably, Concorde was able to overtake the sun on routes where subsonic airliners fell behind. On certain early evening transatlantic flights departing from Heathrow or Paris, it was possible to take off at night and catch up with the sun, landing in daylight; from the cockpit the sun could be seen rising from the horizon in the west.

Paris crash

On 25 July 2000 Air France Flight 4590, registration code: F-BTSC, crashed in Gonesse, France, killing all 100 passengers and 9 crew on board the flight, as well as four people on the ground.

The crash was caused by a titanium strip that fell from a Continental Airlines DC-10 which had just taken off about four minutes earlier. This metal fragment punctured the Concorde's tyres which then disintegrated, and a piece of rubber hit the fuel tank and broke an electrical cable. As a result, fuel leaked out which caught fire. The crew shut down engine number 1 in response to a fire warning, and were unable to raise the gear. With engine number 2 surging and producing little power, the aircraft was unable to gain height or speed, lost control and crashed into a hotel.

Concorde had been the safest working passenger airliner in the world according to passenger deaths per distance travelled, although the Boeing 737 fleet acquires more passenger miles and service hours in one week than the Concorde fleet acquired in the course of its entire service career. The crash of the Concorde was the beginning of the end of its career.

The accident resulted in a programme of modifications to Concorde, including more secure electrical controls, Kevlar lining to the fuel tanks, and specially developed, burst-resistant tyres.

Return to service

The first test-flight after the modifications departed from London Heathrow on 17 July 2001, piloted by BA Chief Concorde Pilot Mike Bannister. During the 3 hour 20 minute flight over the mid-Atlantic towards Iceland, Concorde reached Mach 2 and 60,000 ft, before returning to RAF Brize Norton. The test flight, which was intended to resemble the London-New York route, was declared a success and was watched on live TV, as well as by crowds on the ground at both locations.[3]

The first BA passenger flight took place on 11 September 2001, and was in the air during the attacks on the World Trade Center. This was not a revenue flight, as all the passengers were BA employees.[4]

Normal commercial operations were resumed on 7 November 2001 by BA and AF (aircraft G-BOAE and F-BTSD), with services to New York JFK, where passengers were welcomed by the mayor, Rudy Giuliani.

Withdrawal from service

On 10 April 2003 British Airways and Air France simultaneously announced that they would retire the Concorde later that year. They cited low passenger numbers following the 25 July 2000 crash, the slump in air travel following 9/11 and rising maintenance costs.

That same day Sir Richard Branson offered to buy British Airways' Concordes at their 'original price of £1' for service with his Virgin Atlantic Airways. Branson claimed this to be the same token price that British Airways had paid the British Government, but BA denied this and refused the offer. However, although the cost of buying the aircraft was £26 million each, the money for buying the aircraft was loaned by the government - this loan was written off when British Airways was privatised in 1987.

After posting large losses on their Concorde flights in the early 1980s, British Airways paid a flat sum of £16.5 million in 1984 to the UK government to buy their Concordes outright. After doing a market survey, and discovering that their target customers thought that Concorde was more expensive than it actually was, BA progressively raised prices to match. It seems extremely likely that BA then ran Concorde at a handsome profit probably unlike their French counterparts, although BA refused to open the accounts.

Branson later wrote to The Economist (23 October 2003) that his final offer was "over £5 million" and that he had intended to operate the fleet "for many years to come". Any hope of Concorde remaining in service was further thwarted by Airbus' unwillingness to provide maintenance support for the ageing airframes.

Air France

Air France made its final Concorde landing in the United States in New York City from Paris on 30 May 2003. Firetrucks sprayed the traditional arcs of water above the aircraft on the tarmac of John F. Kennedy airport. Concorde F-BTSD operated the airline's final scheduled supersonic service, returning to Paris on a misty May morning. The final passenger flight for the airline's SSTs was marked by a charter around the Bay of Biscay.

An auction of Concorde parts and memorabilia for Air France was held at Christie's in Paris, on 15 November 2003. 1,300 people attended, and several lots exceeded their predicted values by a factor of ten or more.

One French Concorde has been preserved for future flights for special occasions.

British Airways

BA's last Concorde departure from the Grantley Adams International Airport in Barbados was on 30 August 2003. G-BOAG visited Toronto Pearson International Airport on 1 October 2003.

In a final week of farewell flights Concorde visited Birmingham on 20 October, Belfast on 21 October, Manchester on 22 October, Cardiff on 23 October, and Edinburgh on 24 October. Each day the aircraft made a return flight out and back into Heathrow to the cities concerned, often overflying those cities at low altitude. Over 650 competition winners and 350 special guests were carried.

On the evening of 23 October 2003, the Queen consented to the illumination of Windsor Castle, as Concorde's last ever west-bound commercial flight departed London, and flew overhead. This is an honour normally restricted to major state events and visiting dignitaries.

British Airways retired its aircraft the next day, 24 October. One Concorde left New York to a fanfare similar to its Air France predecessor's, while two more made round-trips, one over the Bay of Biscay, carrying VIP guests including many former Concorde pilots, and one to Edinburgh. The three aircraft then circled over London, having received special permission to fly at low altitude, before landing in sequence at Heathrow. The two round-trip Concordes landed at 4:01 and 4:03 p.m. BST, followed at 4:05 by the one from New York. All three aircraft then spent 45 minutes taxiing around the airport before finally disembarking the last supersonic fare-paying passengers. The pilot of the New York to London flight was Mike Bannister.

Passengers on the final transatlantic flight included:

Poet Maya Angelou

Tony Benn

Former US model Christie Brinkley

Ballerina Darcey Bussell

TV motoring correspondent Jeremy Clarkson

Joan Collins and her husband Percy Gibson.

Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone

Sir David Frost

Stock Exchange chairman Chris Gibson-Smith

Actor Nigel Havers

Model Jodie Kidd

British Airways chairman Lord Marshall

Advertising mogul Lord Saatchi

Piers Morgan, then editor of the Daily Mirror

CNN anchor Richard Quest

The chairmen or chief executives of:


BAE Systems

Merrill Lynch

Deutsche Bank


The London Stock Exchange

The Royal Bank of Scotland

A lucky traveller, who had booked a regular ticket over a year earlier.

The winner (and guest) of an eBay auction conducted by British Airways.

The two winners of an Australian television promotion.

Bonhams held an auction of British Airways' Concorde artefacts on 1 December 2003 at Olympia Exhibition Centre, in Kensington, London. Items sold included a machmeter, a nose cone, Concorde pilot and passenger seats and even the cutlery, ashtrays and blankets used onboard. About £¾ million was taken, with the first half-million going to "Get Kids Going!", a charity which gives disabled children and young people the opportunity to participate in sport.

All of BA's Concordes have been grounded and have lost their airworthiness certificates. BA maintains ownership of the Concordes, and has stated that their Concordes will not be flown again.

Cultural and political impact

Concorde remains a powerful symbol, both for its technology and its sculptural shape. It is a symbol of great national pride to many in Britain and France; in France it was thought of as a French aircraft, in Britain as British.

The reaction of people to the prospect of severe overflying noise also represented a socially important change. Prior to Concorde's flight trials the developments made by the civil aviation industry were largely accepted by developed democratic governments and their electors. The popular backlash (particularly on the eastern seaboard of the USA) against the noise of Concorde represented a political turning point and thereafter scientists and technologists in many industries began to take environmental and societal impacts more seriously, accepting that engineers, powerful investors and governments could not always allow their economic or career interests to prevail. One of the key protesters to the "SST" (Super Sonic Transport - the US term given to the Concorde aircraft), Carol Vendi, ultimately gained political ground over the whole issue and was elected to the US Congress. Concorde led directly to a general reduction of noise of aircraft flying out of JFK; it was found that Concorde was actually quieter than the other aircraft (due to the pilots temporarily throttling back their engines to reduce noise during overflight of residential areas). This caused the other airlines to have to follow suit.

One great irony in the quashing of the Concorde's mass production was the myth of ozone threat. An anti-SST scientist suggested that the jet would produce exhaust which would cause the destruction of the earth's ozone layer, causing "a massive outbreak of skin cancer" and other effects, and this quickly became an accepted view, contributing greatly to the movement against the SST. But, when actual science was applied to the question, it was found that Concorde exhaust emissions, containing NOx, would actually increase the ozone layer to a tiny degree.

From this perspective, Concorde's technical leap forward can be viewed as boosting the public's (and the media's) understanding of conflicts between technology and the environment. In France the use of acoustic fencing alongside TGV tracks might not have been achieved without the 1970s furore over aircraft noise. In Britain the CPRE have issued tranquility maps since 1990 and public agencies are starting to do likewise.

A regular ticket on Concorde was a privilege of the rich, but special circular (non-landing) or one-way (with return by coach or ship) charter flights were arranged to bring a trip within the means of moderately well-off enthusiasts.

An over-flying example was usually referred to by the British as simply "Concorde" and the French as "the Concorde" (rather than "a Concorde"), as if there was only one.

A plane from the BA fleet made occasional flypasts at selected Royal events, major airshows and other special occasions, sometimes in formation with the Red Arrows. On the final day of commercial service, grandstands were erected at London Heathrow for the public to watch the final arrivals and there was extensive media coverage.

Thirty-seven years after its first test flight, Concorde was announced the winner of the Great British Design Quest, organised by the BBC the Design Museum.[2] A total of 212,000 votes were cast with Concorde beating design icons such as the Mini, mini skirt, Jaguar E-type, Tube map and the Supermarine Spitfire. [3]

Public reaction to the Concorde crash was cited by Jeremy Clarkson as a primary inspiration for his book I Know You Got Soul.

Possible replacement

In November 2003, European aviation company EADS (the company behind Airbus) announced that it was considering working with Japanese companies to develop a larger, faster replacement for Concorde [5]. However, recent news reports suggest only $1m is being invested every year into research, much less than the $1bn needed for the development of a viable airliner.

In October 2005, JAXA, the Japan Aerospace eXploration Agency, undertook aerodynamic testing of a scale model of a plane designed to carry 300 passengers at Mach 2. If pursued to commercial deployment, it would be expected to be in service around 2020 - 2025. [6]

Research into supersonic business jets is ongoing.

Films and television

Concorde has been featured or mentioned in:

The Concorde: Airport '79: The Concorde used for the live-action aerial filming was the same Air France Concorde that crashed 21 years later on 25 July 2000.

The Concorde Affair (Concorde Affaire in orig.) Italy 1979. Director: Ruggero Deodato

Moonraker: James Bond arrives in Rio de Janeiro on an Air France Concorde. Air France flew Concorde on the Paris-Dakar-Rio route at the time.

Doctor Who: Featured in the 1982 story 'Time-Flight'

Coming to America: Prince Akeem and Semmi arrive in New York on a British Airways Concorde.

Snatch: The character Cousin Avi flew from New York City to London to see Doug the Head, then back after an unexpected turn of events, and again to London in the closing scene of the film.

The Bonfire of the Vanities: Maria Ruskin (Melanie Griffith) arrives in New York on an Air France Concorde. The film's Second Unit Director, Eric Schwab, went to considerable effort to calculate the exact time and day when a runway at JFK would line up exactly with the setting sun, to serve as a spectacular backdrop for the landing Concorde.

The Parent Trap (1998 version): Hallie and Her father take the Concorde so that they can beat the twins' mother and Annie to London.

Cats & Dogs (2001) The Concorde was used to transport secret agent dogs from the UK to the USA.

Superman II: Superman overtakes Concorde on his way to Paris.

National Treasure: It is shown on the New York Harbour.

The Transformers: As the Aerialbot leader Silverbolt.

SuperSonic Dream: A NOVA Documentary about the history of the Concorde


^ Payments for concorde

^ Flying Concorde, The Full Story by Brian Calvert






I actually flew into L.B.A.on this very aircraft and it was an experience I will never forget,there were 50,000 waiting for us!! MAGIC!! Jack, Leeds.

i think the concorde is incredible and u can go to places faster i would like to go on a concorde some day i want to bring them back again

concorde is the best better than the rest

Concorde is the bestest plane i have ever seen

El más bonito pájaro que ha surcado los cielos, gracias a los que hicieron posible llegar allá donde otros no pudieron. Valladolid España

Wow this much happened to a beautiful plane i cant believe it! it is so cool


Gracias por darnos sueños tan hermosos como el concorde a los que no nos queda mas que soñar y que soñamos con el sin dejar nuestra realidad con los pies en la tierra. Atte Julio C C Mexico Verano de 2007

Having worked on Concorde and flown on board all of these exceptional aircraft it was a very sad day for me when they flew each of their last flights. So much so that I will not visit any of them in static display as they are shells of the majestic flying art forms that they once were and are meant to be airborne and not sadly sitting earth bound as they now are. As I have known the majority of the tech and cabin crews of Concorde I am deeply saddened by the loss of some of the people whom I considered to be friends that I worked with over the years. It  was a privilege and a pleasure to have worked with all of these people over the years (it really was more of a social thing for me, as it never really felt like work as I enjoyed myself too much!) I would truly like to re establish contact with a lot of these people and would welcome any e-mail from them at ableedinbeetle @  In case any one remembers me Bob Bailey from jfk B.A. Catering and later Trusthouse Forte Catering Manager please write!!!


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