F-BVFB. Aerospatiale Concorde 101. c/n 207.


This aircraft was built by built by Societe Nationale Industrielle Aerospatiale, (Aerospatiale), Toulouse, France. It was entered onto the French Aircraft Register as F-BVFB and registered to Aerospatiale.

It flew for the time from Toulouse on March 6, 1976. Following its delivery to Air France on April 8, 1976 it was registered to Compagnie Nationale Air France.

It was re-registered F-BVFB / N94FB to Air France / Braniff Airways on January 12, 1979 to comply with American registration requirements for the operation of the aircraft across continental United States. Following the aircraft's arrival at New York / Washington DC from Paris, the aircraft was used by Braniff Airways to fly its Washington DC - Dallas Fort Worth service and return. Use of this aircraft was short-lived on the route as it was reregistered F-BVFB on June 1, 1980.

Due to low aircraft utilization F-BVFB was stored between June 1990 and May 1996. As it had flown around 12,000 hours it was due for a major 'D' check. The 'D' check was started in April 1996 to allow the aircraft to be back in service when F-BVFC's 'D' check came up the following year.

F-BVFB's Certificate of Airworthiness was cancelled on August 15, 2000 as a result of the crash of the Air France Concorde at Charles de Gaulle Airport, Paris on July 25, 2000. This accident resulted in all Concordes being grounded.

It was fitted with the 'return to flight' modifications that had been mandated by the aircraft's manufacturer and the relevant airworthiness authorities. Following the completion of these modifications, Air France flew F-BVFB to Istres in the South of France on January 26, 2001 to run tests to help understand the crash of F-BTSC. On completion of the tests F-BVFB was flown back to Paris for storage.

The tyre manufacturer Michelin announced on June 7, 2001 that the tyres that were tested at Istres on the French Concorde F-BTSD would be fitted to all Concordes when they returned to service.

F-BVFB, being the first Air France Concorde to be modified following the crash of F-BTSC, was flown on a three and a half hour supersonic verification flight on August 27, 2001 during which it reached a speed of Mach 2.0 briefly.

On September 5, 2001 Certificates of Airworthiness were returned to modified Concordes by the British CAA and French DGAC. The CAA and DGAC announced that once each Concorde had been modified, its Certificate of Airworthiness would also be returned.

F-BVFB completed a further verification flight from Paris on October 15, 2001. A few days later the aircraft flew at Mach 2.0 for a sustained period, the first time since the crash of F-BTSC.

Tickets for Concorde services that were scheduled to recommence on November 7, 2001 went on sale on October 16, 2001. Sales were high and some flights were sold out in a matter of days.

F-BVFB completed an operational assessment flight from Paris to New York and back on October 29, which paved to way for the resumption of full passenger services by Air France Concordes.

F-BVFB operated its final passenger service when it flew as Flight AF4332 from Paris via the Bay of Biscay return on May 31, 2003, under the command of Captain Jean-Louis Châtelain with First Officer Beatrice Vialle and Flight Engineer M.Vasseur assisting.

The Cabin crew assigned to the last passenger service were Nathalie Goubet Daubney (Chief Purser), Evelyne Colomes, Jean-Michel Royer, Gérard Denuit, François Calmels and Olivier Beaudon. The flight was operated as a sightseeing flight and was filled with fare paying passengers. The aircraft reached a supersonic speed of Mach 2.02 and achieved a height of 55,000 feet

F-BVFB's final flight was operated from Paris (CDG) Airport to Karlsruhe-Baden-Baden, West Germany as Flight AF4406 on June 24, 2003. The crew for the final flight consisted of Flight Captain Jean-Louis Châtelain, First Officer Robert Vacchiani and Flight Engineer Rémy Pivet, as well as Nathalie Goubet Daudey as Chief Purser. It arrived in Germany on the first leg of its journey to the Sinsheim Auto & Technik Museum. The museum purchased the aircraft for the token sum of 1 euro, and it went on display as a tribute to the 97 Germans who died in the Paris Concorde crash in July 2000.

F-BVFB was cancelled from the French Aircraft Register on June 27, 2003.

At the time of its retirement F-BVFB had flown a total of 14,771 hours with 5,473 cycles. It had flown 4,791 supersonic cycles.


F-BVFB. Air France - in the old livery at Paris Charles de Gualle Airport, May 1976.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1926-018.)

F-BVFB. Air France - in the old livery at Paris Charles de Gualle Airport, June 1983.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1926-009.)

F-BVFB. Air France - awaiting repainting at Paris Charles de Gualle Airport Airport, May 1997.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1926-047.)

F-BVFB. Air France - in the final livery with additional 'Teleclub' decal at Zurich Airport, August 1998.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1926-019.)

F-BVFB. Air France - in the final livery at Paris Charles de Gualle Airport, June 2003.

(C. Laugier Copyright Image 1926-010.)

F-BVFB. Air France - in the final livery at Paris Charles de Gualle Airport, June 2003.

(C. Laugier Copyright Image 1926-011.)