It is understood that the A380 has a sweepback angle of 33.5 degrees and a taper ratio is approximately 0.3. However, what is the dihedral angle of this aircraft?


1 Answer 1


From an interview with Frank Ogilvie, the aerodynamics director and deputy head of overall aircraft design, it's 5.6°:

Externally, the most distinctive aspect of the wing, aside from its size and 79.7m span, is the pronounced "gulling" effect and its 5.6° dihedral. "This was set by the stability requirements of the aircraft. We didn't want it too high, making it too stable, or too low, making it unstable. Plus, we needed to set it for adequate engine ground clearance, particularly in the case of the aircraft rolling around on its undercarriage. Everyone's seems to have those images on their desktop computer of that Boeing 747 landing badly at Hong Kong, scraping its engines [flickr.com] – that's what we wanted to avoid," says Ogilvie [...]

Creating A Titan. flightglobal.com. 2005.

Note that in-flight the wing flexes up, removing the gull-wing effect:

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— Author: UA-320, via Wikimedia Commons; cropped

Related: How does the dihedral angle work?

  • $\begingroup$ The 380 seems to have an unusually large fin/rudder. I wonder if that was to mitigate any aggravated dutch roll tendency of the high-ish dihedral + sweep. $\endgroup$
    – John K
    Commented Jul 28, 2021 at 16:25
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @JohnK It's so large because the fuselage is so short. Similar to the A318 which has a much larger vertical than the A320 and 321. Initially, Airbus planned a larger version with a longer fuselage where the proportions would have looked more normal. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 28, 2021 at 17:05

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