When, on April 13, 2019, the Stratolaunch made its first flight, it became the largest flying aircraft in the world. Or, to be precise, the largest by measured wingspan. Depending on what you measure ‒ wingspan, nose-to-tail length, overall size, etc. ‒ the “largest aircraft in the world” throne is highly competitive one, and here is the list of aircraft with legitimate claim to it.
Each of these aircraft can be, and sometimes are, described as the world’s largest aircraft, making even Airbus A380 or Boeing 747 look rather tiny next to them.
Stratolaunch has inherited “the largest wingspan of any plane” title from H4 Hercules. The aircraft, also known as Spruce Goose - a WWII-era, U.S.-built eight-engine H4 Hercules wooden flying boat with a wingspan of 98 meters.
Spruce Goose has only flown once, but that was enough to set a world’s record which stood intact for 72 years. On November 2, 1947, it took off for a one minute flight, reaching an altitude of a little over 21 meters (70 feet) and covering approximately 1.6 km (one mile) distance.
Super transporters: Beluga XL vs. Dreamlifter
Both Airbus and Boeing have their special cargo planes, designed to carry composites of their regular planes, as you are probably well aware of. But between Airbus Beluga XL and Boeing Dreamlifter, which one is bigger?
Well, the short answer would be it’s the Dreamlifter. It is longer, higher and has a wider wingspan. For comparison, length of Beluga XL is 63.1 meters, Dreamlifter - 71.68 m; height of Beluga XL is 18.9 m, while Dreamlifter - 21.54 m and when it comes to wingspan, Airbus’ whale is 60.3 m, while Boeing’s plane is 64.4 m.
Source : aerotime
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