Largest Plane in World – the flying giants of the sky
Most of the largest planes in the world are for military cargo transportation
What is the biggest plane in the world? Only a few of such monstrous flying machines are meant to fly people. Most of them are being used to carry cargo for military or general shipments. Here we have collected a list of several such big airplanes in the world. This list is not arranged according to size or capability. And naturally, they are not the fastest planes.
- Antonov An-225 Mriya
- Aero Spacelines Super Guppy
- Lockheed C-5 Galaxy
- Boeing 747 Dreamlifter
- Antonov An-124 Ruslan
- Boeing B-52 Stratofortress
- Airbus Beluga
- Boeing 747
- Boeing C-17 Globemaster III
The Mriya An-255 is still the biggest airplane of the world 2018
Antonov An-225 Mriya
Powered with six turbo fans, the Antonov An-255 Mriya is the heaviest aircraft ever built. It can be considered as the biggest plane in the world. It has a maximum take off weight of 640 ton. This plane also has the largest wingspan in the world. It was designed by Antonov Design Bureau in the Ukrainian SSR in 1885. One a single such aircraft was built and it is still in service. This craft was originally developed to transport the Buran spaceplane. This plane is an improvement of An-124. It took the first flight on 21 December 1988, flying for 74-minute from Kiev. After much evolution, the 225 flew for its first commercial service from Stuttgart, Germany on 3 January 2002. The Mriya is the biggest Cargo plane in world.
The Super Guppy is produced in two variants; the SG and SGT
Aero Spacelines Super Guppy
These cargo planes are the second aircraft of the Guppy series of largest airplane produced by Aero Spacelines. The Super Guppy series has five large aircraft in two variants. They are used for hauling outsize cargo components. The Supper Guppy variants are B-377-SG and B-377-SGT. Guppy, the earlier version, was enlarged using the components of C-97J. B-377 SG version has four Pratt & Whitney T-34-P-7WA turbo-prop engines. The SGT (Super Guppy Turbine) version is powered by Allison 501 D22C turbo prop engine. There are 1 SG series plane and four SGT versions. NASA is the current operator of Super Guppy.
Lockheed C-5 Galaxy is a strategic airlifter
Lockheed C-5 Galaxy
Lockheed C-5 Galaxy is a strategic airlifter. It is the biggest airplane in airlifter category. This military transport aircraft is used by US Air Force to carry heavy outsized and oversized loads. It took the first flight in 30 June 1968 and is still in service. There are 131 such C-5 Galaxy aircrafts. It has large and distinctive high T-tail fin stabilizers and is powered by four TF39 turbofan engines. 75 persons can seat in the craft apart from full loaded cargoes. The craft consumes heavily and has multiple maintenance and reliability issues. For such notorious aspects, aircrews named it as FRED, which is an acronym for Fucking Ridiculous Economic/Environmental Disaster.
The Dreamlifter is among the largest Boeing crafts
Boeing 747 Dreamlifter
This is another cargo aircraft with 65,000 cubic feet of cargo hold. This space is the second largest among any aircraft in the world. Boeing plane sizes range from small to very large, and this craft is the largest. The Boeing 747-400 is modified to create this large aircraft. So far, there are 4 such aircraft in service since 2006. The first 747 was unveiled at Taipei in August 17, 2006. The second in the production line up completed its first flight on September 16, 2006. The name Dream-lifter was after the name Dream-liner. The dream-lifters has a payload capacity of 113,400 kgs. It is 70 feet high and has a length of 71.68 meters. It can fly with a cruising speed of 878 km per hour. It is the largest Boeing plane in world.
Antonov An-124 is a legendary plane with many records
Antonov An-124 Ruslan
Antonov An-124 Ruslan is a transport aircraft designed in 1980s. It is the largest military transport aircraft in the world. The An-124 was the largest aircraft when it was built. Viktor Tolmachev was the lead designer of this craft. Its internal design is similar to Lockheed C-5 Galaxy. It has a greater wingspan is shorter, but it can carry 25% more payload than C-5. Per pilots, despite its large size, it has easy controls and hence easy to handle. Its auxiliary power unit generates such heat and blasts that some airport requires pavement protection to land it. The An-124, world’s largest plane, is a legendary aircraft with several record flights. On May 1987, it flew a record distance of 20,151 km in 25 hours and 30 minutes without refueling.
Stratofortress has undergone many upgrades and modifications
Boeing B-52 Stratofortress
This plane, is a strategic bomber, designed by Boeing. Since its first flight in 1952, the model is still in service with many upgrades and additional supports. Compared to fastest passenger plane, like the Bombardier Global, they fly slow. There are 744 units made so far and they are used by United States Air Force. It can carry up to 32,000 kgs of weapons. The Stratofortress has a combat range of more than 14,080 kms. The design has been evolving since 1946. The turboprop engines increased from 4 to 8 units now. The straight wings of the aircraft changed to swept wings. It was first used to carry nuclear weapons. Like other aircrafts used by the USAF, the Stratofortress also have nickname. It is named BUFF, Big Ugly Fat Fucker by soldiers.
The Beluga looks like the whale resembling its name
Airbus Beluga, the largest airbus, is a standard A300-600 wide body airliner. It is used to carry aircraft parts and oversized cargoes. The shape of this aircraft is like Begula, the special type of whale. So far, there are 5 Belugas are being made and they are in service. The first such cargo craft was introduced in 1995. A larger version, Beluga XL, will be launched in 2020. The fleet is now owned by Airbus Transport International. It has a maximum payload of 47 ton. The airplane is 7.4 m in diameter and it is 37.7-meter long. The main cargo deck of this craft is larger than C-5 Galaxy as well as Antonov An-124. However, it is smaller than Antonov An-225.
The double decked interiors of a Boeing 747
Boeing 747 is a commercial jet airliner and cargo aircraft. It is also known as “Jumbo Jet”. It is the world’s largest passenger plane with the highest capacity for 37 years. It was built to have 150% more capacity than the Boeing 707. The 747 has double deck configuration. Since 1968, 1,545 units are being delivered by Boeing so far. It might be not the best passenger plane, but it is the largest.
Globemaster III is being used by military of several countries
Boeing C-17 Globemaster III
Globemaster III is again a military aircraft used by the USAF. They have been active since September 1991, but production stopped in 2015. A total of 279 such planes were built. The C-17 is also used by several countries like UK, Australia, Canada, Qatar and UAE. It another largest plane in the world by Boeing.
These are the world’s largest plane. There are some more of it and more are being developed. Gradually, these crafts are being used for passengers travelling on intercontinental routes.