No, Heir Force One isn't a typo, but rather a specially converted Airbus A320-232 that features luxury clubman style recliner seats, a large double bed and even a shower room in the presidential area. It's the preferred mode of transportation for Prince Charles on his tour of the United States for a total of 4-days. Continue reading for more.
Lockheed Martin's F-22 Raptor conducted its first flight in 1997, and is a single-seat, twin-engine, all weather stealth tactical fighter aircraft developed for the U.S. Air Force (USAF). It was initially designed primarily as an air superiority fighter, but has additional capabilities including ground attack, electronic warfare, and signals intelligence roles. While Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor, Boeing provides the wings, aft fuselage, avionics integration, and training systems. The flyaway cost for a single unit is $150-million, as of 2009. Continue reading for more.
At $2.1-billion (fly away cost) per unit, the B-2 Spirit stealth bomber, developed and manufactured by Northrop Grumman, is basically a heavy strategic bomber that features low observable stealth technology designed for penetrating dense anti-aircraft defenses; it is able to deploy both conventional and thermonuclear weapons. It has a crew of two and can drop up to eighty 500 lb (230 kg)-class (Mk 82) JDAM Global Positioning System-guided bombs, or sixteen 2,400-pounds (1,100-kilograms) B83 nuclear bombs. The B-2 is the only known aircraft that can carry large air-to-surface standoff weapons in a stealth configuration. Continue reading for more.
Solar Impulse 2 is attempting to fly around the world powered entirely by solar energy. It successfully took off yesterday from Abu Dhabi, and is piloted by the project co-founders Andre Borschberg, along with Bertrand Piccard. This ultra-lightweight aircraft (5,070-pounds) will cover 12 stops across the globe to illustrate the power of renewable energy and green technology, over the next five months. On the technical side, the plane boasts 17,000 solar cells that, when paired with the on-board batteries, allow it to fly day and night. If all goes as planned, Solar Impulse 2 will land in India, Myanmar, and China, before crossing the Pacific Ocean to make appearances in three US cities. Click here to view the first image in today's viral picture gallery. Continue reading to see the five most popular viral videos of today including "Superhero Soccer".
People flock to Maho Beach in Saint Martin for up-close encounters with airplanes. This particular jet might have gotten a little too close as it approached Princess Juliana International Airport. If you're wondering why aircraft are forced to land so close to the beach, it's to touch down near the start of the short Runway 10, which is 2,300 meters in length. Continue reading for more crazy and dangerous airports.
Harrison Ford's characters have battled Darth Vader, Nazis and other evil-doers in movies, but in the real world, he's a licensed pilot who has the freedom to take to the skies at will. But with adventure comes some risk, just as Han Solo, Indiana Jones and other daring movie characters brought to life by Ford realized. Yesterday, Ford's plane crash-landed on a golf course near the airport where he houses the craft. Fortunately, there were no life-threatening injuries, as he was then taken by ambulance to a hospital in a condition described as fair-to-moderate. Continue reading for two more videos - including the air traffic control audio - and more information.
Paul Allen stated that Stratolaunch's carrier aircraft would have a wingspan of 385-feet, or about 20-feet longer than an Apollo-era Saturn V and about half as long as the Hindenburg class airships. This would make it the largest airplane, by wingspan, to ever fly. It will weigh in at over 1.2-million-pounds including the fully fueled launch vehicle and be powered by six 46,000-66,500 lbf thrust-range jet engines, that are planned to be sourced from two used 747-400s that will be cannibalized for engines, avionics, flight deck, landing gear and other proven systems that can be recycled to cut development costs." Click here to view the first image in today's viral picture gallery. Continue reading to watch the five most popular viral videos of today.
At first glance, this may look like a futuristic spaceport, ready for Virgin Galactic ships to take off into the stars, but it's actually Beijing's all-new airport terminal. This was designed by architect Zaha Hadid, known for cultural institutions, skyscrapers, and residential towers. Once complete, it will be one of the largest hubs in the world for air travel, accommodating up to 45 million passengers a year and clocking in at 7.5 million square feet. Continue reading for more pictures and information.
Krossblade's SkyProwler is no ordinary aircraft, as it has four horizontal propellers that allow it to perform vertical take-offs, landings, and hover in mid-air. While a normal copter needs to tilt its nose down in order to move forward, the SkyProwler uses an additional two vertical props in the rear to push itself forward, enabling it to minimize its frontal area while moving through the air. To transform it into stealth mode, they can have the aircraft to retract its landing gear and pull its four copter props into the sides of its body, switchblade-style, at the push of a button. Then it's powered solely by the two rear props, maintaining lift using its wings. In other words, the SkyProwler can cover greater distances using less battery power, and to keep up with fast-moving subjects - its top speed in stealth mode is 83 mph (134 km/h). Click here to view the first image in this week's funny school pictures gallery. Continue reading for a viral video of a 3-year-old white belt reciting the student creed.
Here's another look at the Antonov An-225 Mriya, the longest and heaviest airplane ever built, with a maximum takeoff weight of 640 tonnes. It also has the largest wingspan of any aircraft in operational service. The single example built has the Ukrainian civil registration UR-82060. A second airframe was partially built; its completion was halted because of lack of funding and interest. The Antonov An-225, initially developed for the task of transporting the Buran spaceplane, was an enlargement of the successful Antonov An-124. The first and only An-225 was completed in 1988. Continue reading for another video, more pictures and additional information.