DUBAI, 4 December 2018: Emirates, Etihad, flydubai, Air Arabia and Al Fursan took to the skies in unison at the weekend to celebrate the UAE’s 47th National Day.
The spectacular flypast – a world-first and a UAE civil aviation milestone – involved over 11 aircraft.
Celebrating UAE’s 47th National Day, the event commemorated the legacy and values of HH Sheikh Zayed, the late founding father of the UAE.
The flypast involved a flydubai Boeing 737 MAX 8 (Zayed 1), an Air Arabia Airbus A320 (Zayed 2), an Etihad Airways Airbus A380 (Zayed 3) and an Emirates Airline Airbus A380 (Zayed 4), as well as seven Al Fursan aerobatic display jets from the UAE Air Force.The carefully choreographed ‘stair step’ aerial formation began this afternoon at 1300, when the aircraft took-off from Dubai World Central Al Maktoum International Airport.
Once all of the aircraft established their holding positions with altitudes ranging from 2,000 feet to 5,000 feet with a 1,000 foot vertical separation, the formation commenced.Over the skies of Ras Al Khaimah, each aircraft adjusted its speed and turned to achieve a trail formation. The aircraft then descended into their positions and vertical separation was reduced to 300 feet.
Together, the stunning UAE carrier formation flew with impressive precision across the coastline of the UAE, starting at Ras Al Khaimah, continuing on to Um Al Quwain and Ajman, and then passing landmarks including the Sharjah Corniche, Dubai’s Palm and World Islands with the Burj Khalifa skyline in the background, and finally crossing the Abu Dhabi Corniche and the Sheikh Zayed Mosque, where all aircraft then split and continued on to their respective airports for landing.The success of the formation flight was made possible by the collaboration between the pilots and flight operation managers from each airline, the UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), UAE Ministry of Defence, air traffic controllers, the Abu Dhabi Department of Transportation and Civil Aviation Authorities from other UAE emirates, amongst others.
See the footage here.