London, May 24: The world’s largest aircraft, Airlander 10 successfully completed its test-flight this weekend. The hybrid aircraft dubbed the Airlander 10 merges the technology from airplanes, helicopters and airships. At a massive 302 feet long, Airlander 10 is the largest aircraft flying currently.
The successful testing of Airlander 10 brings it one step closure for the commercial use. It is designed to fly at altitudes of 6,100 meters for up to five days when manned. During the testing the Airlander 10 flew for a total of 180 minutes to test the aircraft's handling, improved landing technology and more, according to Hybrid Air Vehicles, the British company that built the aircraft.
Dave Burns, Airlander’s Chief Pilot said that during the successful test flight in Cardington, UK, the Airlander 10 "handled superbly”. While the company officials said that "There will also be passenger variants for the ultimate flying experience and eventually Hybrid Air Vehicles will fulfill a crucial role in point-to-point cargo transportation to remote areas.”
In its latest flight, the 92m long, 43.5m wide, 26m tall behemoth, stayed aloft for just under 3 hours, collecting valuable data on the aircraft’s operations including safe takeoff and landing protocols, in-air handling, airspeed management and, of course, the systems that are used to collect valuable post-flight data. Happily, during this flight all systems appeared to check out 5-by-9 and a smooth landing was made at Cardington Airfield just north of London, England.
“This is a great testament to the tenacity and ingenuity of the team of engineers at Hybrid Air Vehicles, who are continually pushing the boundaries of aviation with this amazing aircraft,” said technical director Mike Durham.