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The best of Paris Air Show's civilian planes (photos)

Road Trip 2011: The Paris Air Show is a place to check out the latest and greatest, as well as some classic civilian airplanes.

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Daniel Terdiman
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Russian plane over A380 tail

PARIS--The Paris Air Show, held every two years at the Le Bourget airport here, is the world's biggest aviation display. Hundreds of exhibitors come to showcase their wares, and there are dozens of hot airplanes on display. Many are military, and for those, please see this gallery.

But the air show is also a celebration of commercial and civilian aviation, and some of the most famous planes on the planet are here. There is also a daily exhibition of flying exploits. Here, we see a Russian fire tanker--used for dropping water on forest fires--doing its exhibition. Its flight makes it look like it flew just over the top of the massive tail of this Korean Air Airbus A380, the world's largest passenger plane.

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A380 straight on

Here, we see the Airbus A380 doing its own flying exhibition and flying directly toward the crowd gathered at Le Bourget to see it and other airplanes' demonstrations.
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Avanti II

This is the Avanti II, from Piaggio Aero. A "personalized" aircraft, the Avanti II can fly 463 miles an hour in a "whisper quiet" environment. Passengers can stand up all the way, and it is said to cost around 33 percent less than its competition.
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747-8 underside

Boeing's 747-8 Intercontinental made its international debut at the Paris Air Show on Monday. Here, we see the underside of the next-generation of the iconic jumbo jet, with "747-8" embossed on its orange belly.
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747-8 engine

The 747-8 Intercontinental is a step forward for Boeing in part because of its new wing style, which offers improved aerodynamics and larger fuel capacity while also allowing the plane to be as fast as, or faster than, any other passenger aircraft on Earth. And also because it uses GEnx-2B67 engines that produce 66,500 pounds of thrust.
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Cri-Cri and A380

In the foreground is the Cri-Cri, an all-electric plane developed by EADS Innovation Works, Aero Composites Saintonge, and the Green Cri-Cri Association. It is "the first-ever four-engined all-electric aerobatic plane," and includes lightweight a composite structure, four brushless electric motors that produce no carbon dioxide emissions and low noise. It can fly 30 minutes at 120 kilometers an hour, and during aerobatic performance, can fly 15 minutes at 250 kilometers an hour.

In the background is the Airbus A380, the world's largest passenger aircraft.

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Pushing Cri-Cri onto the flight line

Here, we see the Cri-Cri being pushed onto the flight line for its aerobatic performance at the Paris Air Show.
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Breitling jet team plane

This is an L-39C Albatross, one of seven in the Breitling jet team, the world's biggest professional flying team.
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Beechcraft T-6C

This is the Beechcraft T-6C, which has a maximum cruising speed of 316 knots. It can reach an altitude of 31,000 feet and has a maximum range of 850 nautical miles. Its maximum takeoff weight is 6,900 pounds (for aerobatic flying), and its basic operating weight is 5,051 pounds.
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Boeing 777 Qatar

This is a Boeing 777-200LR, as seen at the Paris Air Show at Le Bourget, on Monday.
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737

This is an Air Berlin Boeing 737, seen here with the tail of the Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental behind it.
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A380 banking hard left

During its flight exhibition at the Paris Air Show, the Airbus A380 banks hard to the left.
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A380 on the move

Here, we see the Airbus A380 being pushed onto the flight line for its exhibition flying.
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A380 taking off

Here we see the A380 taking off.
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A380 underside

Here we see the underside of the A380 as it flies almost directly over the crowd gathered to watch its flying exhibition.
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ATR-600

This is an Air Maroc ATR-600, built by ATR. It is said to offer the widest passenger cabin in the regional airplane market.
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Breitling Super Constellation

This is the Breitling Super Constellation, also known as the Star of Switzerland. The plane, built by Lockheed, is from the 1950s.
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Zero G

This is the Zero G Airbus A300, a plane that can take passengers on a zero-gravity flight, as seen at the Paris Air Show on Monday.
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Breitling Super Constellation in flight

Here, we see the Breitling Super Constellation in flight at the Paris Air Show.
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Bombardier Q400 Next Gen

This is the Bombardier Q400 Next Gen, shown here in Air Canada Express livery.
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Bombardier CRJ1000 Next Jen

This is the Bombardier CRJ1000 Next Gen, shown here in Brit Air livery. The plane carries up to 100 passengers and four crew. It can reach 541 miles an hour, and has the "lowest fuel consumption and lowest carbon dioxide emissions in its class."
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Breitling Wingwalker plane

This is Breitling's Wingwalker plane, a Boeing Stearman bi-plane.
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EC 145 T2 helicopter

This is the EC145 T2 helicopter, from Eurocopter. It can fly with 10 passengers (including the pilot) at speeds up to 248 kilometers an hour. It has a maximum range of 356 nautical miles and can fly for three hours and 15 minutes.
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Sukhoi SuperJet 100

This is the Sukhoi SuperJet 100, doing its exhibition flight at the Paris Air Show on Monday.
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Sukhoi SuperJet 100

This is the Sukhoi SuperJet 100, seen at the Paris Air Show.

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