Top 10 largest aircraft

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Top 10 largest aircraft
Top 10 largest aircraft

Aviation, like many areas of engineering, is not alien to gigantism. Today we have collected some of the largest and most impressive aircraft ever taken into the air. Not only dry dimensions were considered, but also the importance for world aviation, as well as the originality of the design and purpose.

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Tupolev ANT-20 "Maxim Gorky"

Built in honor of the 40th anniversary of the literary activity of Maxim Gorky, the ANT-20 with 8 engines and a wingspan of 61 meters was the largest aircraft of its time. After a successful test flight on June 17, 1934, Maxim Gorky was lazily slicing through the airspace over Red Square two days later, striking the imagination of the inhabitants of the then young Soviet state with its dimensions. Inside the wings there were places equipped for sleeping, and in the central part you could find a printing house, a laboratory and even a library. It was assumed that the aircraft will be used in a very wide range of areas: from broadcast (and not only) campaigning to recreational passenger flights. However, the further history of the ANT-20 is tragic: on May 18, 1935, an accident occurred, as a result of which the only copy of the aircraft crashed, and the entire crew with 35 passengers on board died. Neither ANT-20, nor its modifications have entered serial production.

Characteristics and dimensions:

Length: 33 m

Wingspan: 63 m

Crew: 20 people.

Number of passengers: 60-70 people

Max. flight speed: 275 km / h

Flight range: 1000 km

Max. takeoff weight: 53 t


Hughes H-4 Hercules

"Hercules" still retains the high-profile status of the largest seaplane in history and the owner of the largest wing span (98 meters), although it was created under the leadership of the American tycoon Howard Hughes during the Second World War. Several circumstances spoil the picture: intended for the transfer of 750 soldiers in full gear across the Atlantic, "Hercules" never crossed the ocean and remained in a single copy, and a wooden one. Such an exotic material for aviation was chosen due to the restrictions imposed by martial law in which the US economy found itself - there was a shortage of metals, especially aluminum. In 1947, the wooden "Hercules" nevertheless took off, but the further development of the project was abandoned.

Characteristics and dimensions:

Length: 66, 45 m

Wingspan: 97.54 m

Crew: 3 people.

Number of passengers: 750 people (suggested for metal version)

Max. flight speed: 565 km / h

Flight range: 5634 km

Max. takeoff weight: 180 t


An-22 "Antey"

The first Soviet wide-body aircraft, however, it is still the largest in the world in the category of aircraft with turboprop engines. The first flight - 1965, is still used in Russia and Ukraine.

Characteristics and dimensions:

Length: 57, 31 m

Wingspan: 64, 40 m

Crew: 5-7 people.

Number of passengers: 28 people accompanying the cargo / 290 soldiers / 202 wounded / 150 paratroopers

Max. flight speed: 650 km / h

Flight range: 8500 km (no load)

Max. takeoff weight: 225 t


Boeing B-52 Stratofortress

The legendary "Stratospheric Fortress" first took to the skies in 1952 and still serves the needs of the US Air Force. One of the largest strategic missile bombers, the B-52 was intended to deliver thermonuclear bombs anywhere in the USSR, but over time it underwent several modifications and became multifunctional. After the start of operation, it was used in almost all US military campaigns, and was often involved in nuclear tests. In addition to bombs, it has laser-guided missiles. The most common modification is the B-52H.

Characteristics and dimensions (model B-52H):

Length: 48.5 m

Wingspan: 56.4 m

Crew: 5 people.

Number of passengers: crew only

Max. flight speed: 1047 km / h

Flight range: 16232 km (no load)

Max. takeoff weight: 220 t


Lockheed C-5 Galaxy

Pride of the US Air Force, developed by the aerospace company Lockheed. Having made its first flight in 1968, the C-5 strategic military transport aircraft in various modifications has survived to this day and continues to be operated by the American armed forces at this time. It was used in many military conflicts: in Vietnam, in Yugoslavia, in both wars in Iraq, as well as in Afghanistan. Until 1982, it was the largest cargo aircraft in mass production. Purpose - transportation of military equipment and personnel to anywhere in the world. At the moment, the US Air Force is already in service with 19 aircraft of the latest high-tech modification C-5M Super Galaxy (operation began in February 2014). By 2018, it is planned to increase their number to 52.

Features and dimensions (model C-5M Super Galaxy):

Length: 75, 53 m

Wingspan: 67, 91 m

Crew: 7 people.

Number of passengers: no data

Max. flight speed: 922 km / h

Flight range: 11711 km

Max. takeoff weight: 381 t


An-124 "Ruslan"

The largest operational military aircraft in the world at the moment. Designed to transport both military equipment and personnel. Developed at the Antonov Design Bureau, made its first flight in 1982. Now it is used both in Russia and in Ukraine, and for civilian purposes, for example, for the transportation of non-standard and oversized cargo. So, in 2011, Ruslan transported a whole locomotive weighing 109 tons from Canada to Ireland.

Characteristics and dimensions:

Length: 69.1 m

Wingspan: 73.3 m

Crew: 8 people.

Number of passengers: 28 people

Max. flight speed: 865 km / h

Flight range: 16500 km (no load)

Max. takeoff weight: 392 t


Airbus A-380-800

The largest serial passenger aircraft (airliner) in the world. The wingspan is almost 80 meters, the capacity is up to 853 passengers. Developed by the European concern Airbus S.A.S., Made its first flight in 2007, and is actively used by airlines. Composite materials are widely used in the design to reduce the weight of the aircraft. With its appearance on the market, it competed with the aging Boeing 747.

Characteristics and dimensions:

Length: 73.1 m

Wingspan: 79.75 m

Crew: 2 people.

Number of passengers: 853 people (in single-class configuration)

Max. flight speed: 1020 km / h

Flight range: 15200 km

Max. takeoff weight: 575 t


Boeing 747

Each of us has seen this plane at least once in our lives. Since its first flight in 1969, the 747 remained the largest passenger airliner for a full 37 years - until the arrival of the Airbus A380. Used by airlines around the world. The legendary character of this aircraft is proved, however, not only by the long and successful "life" of its modifications. In 1991, the Boeing 747 set a world record for the transportation of passengers: during the combat operation "Solomon" for the export of Ethiopian Jews to Israel on board the 747, 1,112 passengers managed to fit in and reach their destination at once. Among other things, this aircraft was also used to transport Space Shuttle spacecraft from the production site to the launch site. The 747-8I modification is the world's longest passenger aircraft.

Features and Dimensions (Model 747-8I):

Length: 76.4 m

Wingspan: 68.5 m

Crew: 2 people.

Number of passengers: 605 people (in single-class configuration)

Max. flight speed: 1102 km / h

Flight range: 14100 km

Max. takeoff weight: 448 t


Airbus A300-600ST Beluga

Beluga is a modification of the Airbus family, distinguished by its unique hull shape. This aircraft is not so large against the background of the others, but its purpose is to transport the largest cargo. In particular, parts of other Airbus aircraft. The first flight took place in 1994.

Characteristics and dimensions:

Length: 56, 15 m

Wingspan: 44, 84 m

Crew: 2 people.

Number of passengers: 605 people (in single-class configuration)

Max. flight speed: 1000 km / h

Flight range: 4632 km (with a load of 26 tons)

Max.takeoff weight: 155 t


An-225 "Mriya" (Dream)

This giant needs an introduction even less than the Boeing 747. The legendary An-225 is objectively recognized as the largest (wing span - almost 88.5 meters, total length - 84 meters, or 25 floors of a residential building) and heavy (capable of taking off from with a total weight of up to 640 tons) by an airplane ever created by man.

The An-225 made its first flight in December 1988. Initially, it was supposed to be used for the transportation of the Buran spacecraft, but after the collapse of the USSR, the need for it disappeared. In the early 2000s, "Mriya" was restored, combining the capabilities of several Ukrainian enterprises, and the one-of-a-kind working copy of the An-225 is now being exploited by Ukraine for commercial purposes.

Characteristics and dimensions:

Length: 84 m

Wingspan: 88.4 m

Crew: 6 people.

Number of passengers: 88 people accompanying the cargo

Max. flight speed: 850 km / h

Flight range: 15,400 km

Max. takeoff weight: 640 t


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