Stratolaunch test flies World Largest Airplane

The World largest airplane built by Stratolaunch recently completed its second test flight from Mojave Air and Space Port in California.

About the test flight

  • The flight reached an altitude of 4,267 metres during its test flight.
  • It reached a top speed of 320 kilometre per hour.
  • The plane can carry more than 220 tonnes of payload.
  • The wingspan of the aircraft is 117 metres. This is greater than an American football field.
  • It has been named “Roc”. Roc is an enormous bird usually addressed in the mythological stories of the Middle East. It is quite popular from “Sinbad, the Sailor”.
  • It carries a twin-fuselage configuration. Fuselage is the main body section of the aircraft. It holds the cargo, crew and the passengers. A twin-fuselage design has two fuselages.
  • The fuselages are supported by twelve main landing gear wheels and two nose gear wheels.
  • The left fuselage cockpit is unmanned. It only houses support equipment. Both the fuselage cockpits are pressurised and separated from the unpressurised vehicle.

Background

Stratolaunch was established by Paul Allen in 2011. He was a co-founder of Microsoft.

Other popular projects of Stratolaunch

Stratolaunch is also developing a reusable hypersonic flight vehicle that shall be used to launch satellites.

Science behind Airplanes

The air wings of the planes are shaped to make the air move faster over the top of the wings. As the air is moving faster, its pressure decreases. This drop in pressure occurs on the top of the wing. This in turn creates a pressure difference between the top and bottom of the wings of the airplane. This difference in pressure creates a force that lifts the wing into the air.

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