Top 10 Largest Aeroplanes ( Civilians) in the World

Posted on Mar 14 2014 - 6:03am by Admin

The following are the Top 10 Largest Aerolanes ( Civilians) in the World.                                                                    

1. Antonov An-225 Mriya                                                                                                                                                        

2. Airbus A340-600

3. Airbus A380

4. Antonov An-124 Ruslan

5. Antonov An-22

6. Boeing 747

7. Boeing 747-8

8. Boeing 747 Large Cargo Freighter

9. Tupolev Maxsim Gorki

10. Dornier Do X

1. Antonov An-225 Mriya

 

An-225 Mriya

The An-225 with Buran atop, at the Paris Air Show in 1989.

Role

Strategic airlifter

National origin

Soviet Union / Ukraine

Manufacturer

Antonov

First flight

21 December 1988

Status

In service

Primary user

Antonov Airlines

Produced

1988

Number built

One

Developed from

Antonov An-124

The Antonov An-225 Mriya (Ukrainian: Антонов Ан-225 Мрія, Dream, NATO reporting name: “Cossack“) is a strategic airlift cargo aircraft that was designed by the Soviet Union’s Antonov Design Bureau in the 1980s. The An-225’s name, Mriya (Мрiя) means “Dream” (Inspiration) in Ukrainian.   It is powered by six turbofan engines and is the longest and heaviest aircraft ever made with a maximum takeoff weight of 640 tonnes. It also has the largest wingspan of any aircraft in operational service.

Antonov_An-225_with_Buran_at_Le_Bourget_1989_Manteufel

The single example built bears the civil registration UR-82060 of its Ukrainian operator.A second airframe was partially built; its completion has been halted due to lack of funding and interest. The Antonov An-225, originally developed specifically to transport the Buran spaceplane, was an enlargement of the successful Antonov An-124.

an2245

The first An-225 was completed in 1988 and remains in commercial operation with Antonov Airlines carrying oversized payloads. The airlifter holds the absolute world records for an airlifted single item payload of 189,980 kilograms (418,834 pounds), and an airlifted total payload of 253,820 kilograms (559,577 pounds). It has also transported a payload of 247,000 kilograms (545,000 pounds) on a commercial flight.

Shuttle-Antonov-An-225-Mriya

The Antonov An-225 was designed to airlift the Energia rocket’s boosters and the Buran space shuttle for the Soviet space program. It was developed as a replacement for the Myasishchev VM-T. The An-225’s original mission and objectives are almost identical to that of the United States’ Shuttle Carrier Aircraft. On 11 August 2009, the heaviest single cargo item ever sent via air freight was loaded onto the Antonov 225.

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At 16.23 metres (53.2 ft) long and 4.27 metres (14.0 ft) wide, its consignment, a generator for a gas power plant in Armenia along with its loading frame, weighed in at a record 189 tonnes (417,000 lb).Also during 2009, the An-225 was painted in a new blue and yellow paint scheme, after Antonov ceased cooperation with AirFoyle and partnered with Volga-Dnepr in 2006. On 11 June 2010, the An-225 carried the world’s longest piece of air cargo, when it flew two new 42-meter test wind turbine blades from Tianjin, China to Denmark.

2. Airbus A340-600

The Airbus A340 is a long-range four-engine wide-body commercial passenger jet airliner. It was developed and produced by Airbus SAS (previously known as Airbus Industrie),[Nb 1] a consortium of European aerospace companies, which is a subsidiary of Airbus Group (previously known as EADS). The A340 was assembled at Toulouse, France. It seats up to 375 passengers in the standard variants and 440 in the stretched −600 series.

Cathay.pacific.a340-600.b-hqb.arp

Depending on the model, it has a range of between 6,700 to 9,000 nautical miles (12,400 to 16,700 km). It is similar in design to the twin-engined A330 with which it was concurrently designed. Its distinguishing features are four high-bypass turbofan engines and three-bogie main landing gear. Airbus manufactured the A340 in four fuselage lengths. The initial variant, A340-300, which entered service in 1993, measured 59.39 metres (194.8 ft).

Airbus_A340-600_Paris_Air_Show_2005

The shorter −200 was developed next, and the A340-600 was a 15.91 metres (52.2 ft) stretch of the −200. The −600 was developed alongside the shorter A340-500, which would become the longest-ranged commercial airliner until the arrival of the Boeing 777-200LR. The two initial models were powered by the CFM56-5C, rated at 151 kilonewtons (34,000 lbf), while Rolls-Royce held exclusive powerplant rights to the extended-ranged and heavier −500 and −600 models, through the 267-kilonewton (60,000 lbf) Rolls-Royce Trent 500.

Iberia_Airbus_A340_600

Initial A340 versions share the fuselage and wing of the A330 while the −500/-600 models are longer and have larger wings. Launch customers Lufthansa and Air France placed the A340 into service in March 1993. As of September 2011, 379 orders had been placed (not including private operators), of which 375 were delivered. The most common type were the A340-300 model, with 218 aircraft delivered. Lufthansa is the biggest operator of the A340, having acquired 59 aircraft.

The A340 is used on long-haul, trans-oceanic routes due to its immunity from ETOPS; however, with reliability in engines improving, airlines are progressively phasing out the type in favour of more economical twinjets, such as the A330 and the Boeing 777. Airbus announced on 10 November 2011 that the A340 production had been concluded.

3. Airbus A380

 

A380

An Emirates A380 on final approach to land at Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport

Role

Wide-body, double-deck jet airliner

National origin

Multi-national

Manufacturer

Airbus

First flight

27 April 2005

Introduction

25 October 2007 with Singapore Airlines

Status

In service

Primary users

Emirates Singapore Airlines Qantas Lufthansa Others in Operators below

Produced

2004–present

Number built

124 as of February 2014

Unit cost

US$403.9 million (approx. €300 million or GB£252 million)

The Airbus A380 is a double-deck, wide-body, four-engine jet airliner manufactured by Airbus. It is the world’s largest passenger airliner; many airports have upgraded their facilities to accommodate it because of its size. Initially named Airbus A3XX, Airbus designed the aircraft to challenge Boeing’s monopoly in the large-aircraft market; the A380 made its first flight on 27 April 2005 and entered commercial service in October 2007 with Singapore Airlines.

Singapore_Airlines_Airbus_A380_Wallner

The A380’s upper deck extends along the entire length of the fuselage, with a width equivalent to a wide-body aircraft. This gives the A380-800’s cabin 478 square metres (5,145.1 sq ft) of floor space, which is 40% more than the next-largest airliner, the Boeing 747-8, and provides seating for 525 people in a typical three-class configuration or up to 853 people in an all-economy class configuration.

Airbus_A380_blue_sky

The A380-800 has a design range of 15,700 kilometres (8,500 nmi; 9,800 mi), sufficient to fly nonstop from Dubai to Los Angeles, and a cruising speed of Mach 0.85 (about 900 km/h or 560 mph; 490 kn at cruising altitude).As of February 2014 Airbus has received 324 firm orders and delivered 124 aircraft. Emirates has the most A380s on firm order with 140 as of January 2014.

4. Antonov An-124 Ruslan

An-124 Ruslan

A Polet Airlines An-124 approaching Sheremetyevo International Airport (July 2011)

Role

Transport aircraft

National origin

Soviet Union

Manufacturer

Antonov, Aviastar-SP

First flight

26 December 1982

Introduction

1986

Status

In service

Primary users

Russian Air Force Antonov Airlines Volga-Dnepr Airlines

Produced

1982–present

Unit cost

US$70–100 million

Developed into

Antonov An-225

The Antonov An-124 Ruslan (Ukrainian: Антонов Ан-124 «Руслан») (NATO reporting name: Condor) is a strategic airlift jet aircraft. It was designed by the Antonov design bureau in the Ukrainian SSR, then part of the Soviet Union. The An-124 is the world’s first highest gross weight production cargo airplane and world’s second heaviest operating cargo aircraft, behind the one-off Antonov An-225 (a greatly enlarged design based on the An-124).

Volga-Dnepr_Antonov_An-124-100M-150_and_Cubana_Ilyushin_Il-96-300

During development it was known as Izdeliye 400 in house, and An-40 in the West. First flown in 1982, civil certification was issued on 30 December 1992.In July 2013, 26 An-124s were in commercial service with 10 on order. During the 1970s, the VTA (Military Transport Aviation) arm of the Soviet Air Force had a shortfall in strategic heavy airlift capacity.

1249315

Its largest planes consisted of about 50 Antonov An-22 turboprops, which were used heavily for tactical roles. A classified 1975 CIA analysis concluded that the USSR did “…not match the US in ability to provide long-range heavy lift support. The An-124 was manufactured in parallel by two plants: the Russian company Aviastar-SP (ex. Ulyanovsk Aviation Industrial Complex) and by the Kyiv Aviation Plant AVIANT, in Ukraine. Design work started in 1971 and construction of facilities began in 1973.

Polet_Airlines_An-124_RA-82075_in_flight_28-Jul-2011

Manufacturing on the first airframe began in 1979. Ultimately this project brought together over 100 factories contracted to produce systems and parts. The first flight took place in December 1982 and the first exposure to the West followed in 1985 at the Paris Air Show. Russia and Ukraine agreed to resume the production in the third quarter of 2008.

In May 2008, a new variant—the An-124-150—was announced; it featured several improvements, including a maximum lift capacity of 150 tonnes.However, in May 2009, Antonov’s partner, United Aircraft Corporation announced it did not plan production of An-124s in the period 2009–2012. In late 2009, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev ordered production of the aircraft resumed. It is expected that Russia will purchase 20 new aircraft.

5. Antonov An-22

An-22 “Antei”

Antonov An-22

Role

Strategic airlifter

Manufacturer

Antonov

Designer

Oleg Antonov

First flight

27 February 1965

Introduction

1967

Status

in active service

Primary users

Military Transport Aviation (Soviet Air Force) Aeroflot Antonov Airlines

Produced

1966–1976

Number built

68

The Antonov An-22 “Antei” (Ukrainian: Ан-22 Антей; Russian: Ан-22 Антей[1]) (NATO reporting name “Cock“) is a heavy military transport aircraft designed by the Antonov Design Bureau in the Soviet Union. Powered by four turboprop engines each driving a pair of contra-rotating propellers, the design was the first Soviet wide-body aircraft and remains the world’s largest turboprop-powered aircraft to date. An-22 first appeared for public outside the Soviet Union at the 1965 Paris Air Show.

Antonov_An-22_2

Since then, the model saw extensive use in major military and humanitarian airlifts of the Soviet Union.The aircraft was designed as a strategic airlifter, designed specifically to expand the Soviet Airborne Troops’ capability to land with their then-new BMD-1 armoured vehicles. The An-22 cargo hold can accommodate four BMD-1 compared to only one in the An-12. It also has the capability to takeoff from austere, unpaved and short airstrips, allowing airborne troops to perform air-landing operations.

Antonov_Design_Bureau_An-22A_UR-09307_UKKM_2008-9-27

This is achieved by four pairs of contra-rotating propellers, similar to those on the Tupolev Tu-114. The engines generate significant thrust, and produce a slipstream over the wings and large double-slotted flaps. The landing gear is ruggedized for rough airstrips, and, in early versions, tire pressures could be adjusted in flight for optimum landing performance, although that feature was removed in later models.

Only one production variant was built, the standard An-22. Prototypes, such as the one first featured at the 1965 Paris Air Show had fully glazed noses that lacked the nose mounted radar of production models. Those aircraft had the radar mounted below the right wheel well fairing, forward of the wheels. Antonov designated a variant with a modified electrical system and an additional augmented flight control system the An-22A but the designation was not used by the military.

A proposed civil airliner version capable of seating 724 passengers on upper and lower decks was planned but wasn’t constructed. (For comparison, a typical Boeing 747 can carry 400–500 passengers.).The An-22 aircraft were often seen at the Le Bourget Air Show, and in 1988 delivered an engine from An-124 to the Farnborough Airshow. In late 1980s, the An-22s were used to deliver Internal Troops to many regional conflicts during and after the breakup of the Soviet Union.

In 1995 they deployed the Russian peacekeeping force from the 98th Guards Airborne Division during the Bosnian War. Approximately 45 An-22s remained in service by the mid-1990s, mostly with the Russian Air Force, but these are slowly being replaced by the bigger turbofan-powered Antonov An-124. The remaining An-22s appear to be operated by an independent military transport aviation squadron at Migalovo.

6. Boeing 747

 

British Airways Boeing 747-400 during takeoff

Role

Wide-body, long-range jet airliner

National origin

United States

Manufacturer

Boeing Commercial Airplanes

First flight

February 9, 1969

Introduction

January 22, 1970 with Pan Am

Status

In service

Primary users

British Airways United Airlines Lufthansa KLM

Produced

1968–present

Number built

1,484 as of February 2014

Unit cost

747-100: US$24 million (1967) 747-200: US$39 million (1976) 747-300: US$83 million (1982) 747-400: US$228–260 million (2007) 747-8I: US$351.4 million 747-8F: US$352 million

Variants

Boeing 747SP Boeing 747-400 Boeing 747-8 Boeing VC-25 Boeing E-4

Developed into

Boeing YAL-1 Boeing 747 Large Cargo Freighter

The Boeing 747 is a wide-body commercial airliner and cargo transport aircraft, often referred to by its original nickname, Jumbo Jet, or Queen of the Skies. It is among the world’s most recognizable aircraft and was the first wide-body produced. Manufactured by Boeing’s Commercial Airplane unit in the United States, the original version of the 747 was two and a half times larger in capacity than the Boeing 707,one of the common large commercial aircraft of the 1960s.

Pan_Am_Boeing_747_at_Zurich_Airport_in_May_1985

First flown commercially in 1970, the 747 held the passenger capacity record for 37 years. The four-engine 747 uses a double deck configuration for part of its length. It is available in passenger, freighter and other versions. Boeing designed the 747’s hump-like upper deck to serve as a first class lounge or (as is the general rule today) extra seating, and to allow the aircraft to be easily converted to a cargo carrier by removing seats and installing a front cargo door.

First Boeing 747

Boeing did so because the company expected supersonic airliners (development of which was announced in the early 1960s) to render the 747 and other subsonic airliners obsolete, while the demand for subsonic cargo aircraft would be robust well into the future. The 747 was expected to become obsolete after 400 were sold, but it exceeded critics’ expectations with production passing the 1,000 mark in 1993. By December 2013, 1,482 aircraft had been built, with 55 of the 747-8 variants remaining on order.

Qantas_Boeing_747-438ER_VH-OEI_at_LAX

The 747-400, the most common passenger version in service, is among the fastest airliners in service with a high-subsonic cruise speed of Mach 0.85–0.855 (up to 570 mph or 920 km/h). It has an intercontinental range of 7,260 nautical miles (8,350 mi or 13,450 km). The 747-400 passenger version can accommodate 416 passengers in a typical three-class layout, 524 passengers in a typical two-class layout, or 660 passengers in a high density one-class configuration.

The newest version of the aircraft, the 747-8, is in production and received certification in 2011. Deliveries of the 747-8F freighter version to launch customer Cargolux began in October 2011; deliveries of the 747-8I passenger version to Lufthansa began in May 2012. The 747 is to be replaced by the Boeing Y3 (part of the Boeing Yellowstone Project) in the future.

7. Boeing 747-8

 

Boeing 747-8

Boeing 747-8F during the 747-8’s maiden flight on February 8, 2010

Role

Wide-body jet airliner

National origin

United States

Manufacturer

Boeing Commercial Airplanes

First flight

747-8F: February 8, 2010 747-8I: March 20, 2011

Introduction

747-8F: October 12, 2011, with Cargolux 747-8I: June 1, 2012, with Lufthansa

Status

In service

Primary users

Cathay Pacific Cargo Atlas Air Cargolux Airlines Lufthansa

Produced

2008–present

Number built

64 delivered as of December 2013

Unit cost

747-8F: US$356.9 million 747-8I: US$357.5 million

Developed from

Boeing 747-400

The Boeing 747-8 is a wide-body jet airliner developed by Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Officially announced in 2005, the 747-8 is the third-generation Boeing 747 version, with lengthened fuselage, redesigned wings, and improved efficiency. The 747-8 is the largest 747 version, the largest commercial aircraft built in the United States, and the longest passenger aircraft in the world.

Boeing_747-8_N747EX_First_Flight

The 747-8 is offered in two main variants: the 747-8 Intercontinental (747-8I) for passengers and the 747-8 Freighter (747-8F) for cargo. The first 747-8F performed the model’s maiden flight on February 8, 2010, with the 747-8 Intercontinental following on March 20, 2011. Delivery of the first freighter aircraft occurred in October 2011 and the passenger model began deliveries in 2012. In December 2013, confirmed orders for the 747-8 totaled 119, including 68 of the freighter version, and 51 of the passenger version.

Interior_Boeing_747-8_Intercontinental_main_deck

After the 747X program, Boeing continued to study improvements to the 747. The 747-400XQLR (Quiet Long Range) was meant to have an increased range of 7,980 nmi (14,780 km), with better fuel efficiency and reduced noise.Changes studied included raked wingtips similar to those used on the 767-400ER and a sawtooth engine nacelle for noise reduction. Although the 747-400XQLR did not move to production, many of its features were used for the 747 Advanced.

In early 2004, Boeing announced tentative plans for the 747 Advanced that were eventually adopted. Similar in nature to the 747X, the stretched 747 Advanced used technology from the Boeing 787 Dreamliner to modernize the design and its systems On November 14, 2005, Boeing announced that it was launching the 747 Advanced as the “Boeing 747-8”

8.Boeing 747 Large Cargo Freighter

747 Dreamlifter

Boeing 747 LCF Dreamlifter

Role

Outsize cargo freight aircraft

Manufacturer

Boeing Commercial Airplanes Evergreen Aviation Technologies Corporation

First flight

September 9, 2006

Introduction

2007

Status

Never commercially produced, in private service

Primary user

Boeing Commercial Airplanes

Number built

4 (all conversions)

Developed from

Boeing 747-400

The Boeing 747 Dreamlifter (formerly Large Cargo Freighter or LCF) is a wide-body cargo aircraft. Cargo is placed in the aircraft by the world’s longest cargo loader. It is an extensively modified Boeing 747-400 and is used exclusively for transporting 787 aircraft parts to Boeing’s assembly plants from suppliers around the world.

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Boeing Commercial Airplanes announced on October 13, 2003 that, due to the length of time required by land and marine shipping, air transport will be the primary method of transporting parts for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner (then known as the 7E7). Initially, three used passenger 747-400 aircraft were to be converted into an outsize configuration in order to ferry sub-assemblies from Japan and Italy to North Charleston, South Carolina and then to Washington for final assembly, but a fourth was subsequently added to the program.

Boeing_747-400LCF_Dreamlifter

The Large Cargo Freighter has a bulging fuselage similar in concept to the Super Guppy and Airbus A300-600ST Beluga outsize cargo aircraft, which are also used for transporting wings and fuselage sections. At 65,000 cubic feet (1,840 cubic meters) the cargo hold is the largest in the world, and it can hold three times the volume of a 747-400F freighter. In June 2006, the first DBL-100 cargo loader used for loading 787 parts into the 747 LCF was completed. In December 2006, Boeing announced the 747 LCF would be named Dreamlifter, a reference to the 787’s name, Dreamliner.

It unveiled a standard livery for the aircraft that included a logo reminiscent of the 787’s Dreamliner logo. Certification was initially planned for early 2007, but was pushed back to June 2007. The aircraft’s winglets were removed to resolve excess vibration and other handling characteristics prior to final certification.In the meantime, as part of the flight test program, LCF delivered major sections of the 787 from partner sites around the world to the Boeing factory in Everett, Washington for final assembly.

The 747 LCF was granted FAA type certification on June 2, 2007. From its first flight in 2006 until certification in 2007, the Dreamlifter completed 437 hours of flight testing along with 639 hours of ground testing.Of the four 747 Dreamlifters Boeing acquired three were complete and operational by June 2008 and the fourth became operational in February 2010.

9. Tupolev Maxsim Gorki

Tupolev ANT-20

ANT-20

ANT-20 “Maxim Gorky”

Role

Propaganda aircraft/Transport

National origin

Soviet Union

Manufacturer

Tupolev

First flight

19 May 1934

Introduction

1934

Retired

1942

Primary user

Soviet Union

Number built

2

Developed from

Tupolev TB-4

The Tupolev ANT-20 Maxim Gorky (Russian: Туполев АНТ-20 “Максим Горький”) was a Soviet eight-engine aircraft, the largest of the 1930s. Its wingspan was similar to that of a modern Boeing 747. The ANT-20 was designed by Andrei Tupolev, using the all-metal airframe technologies devised by German engineer Hugo Junkers during the World War I years, and constructed between July 4, 1933 and April 3, 1934.

Tupolew_ANT-20_1935

It was one of two aircraft of its kind built by the Soviets. The aircraft was named after Maxim Gorky and dedicated to the 40th anniversary of his literary and public activities. The ANT-20 was the largest known aircraft to have used the Junkers design philosophy of corrugated sheet metal for many of the airframe’s key components, especially the corrugated sheet metal skinning of the airframe.

Tupolev-Ant-20-Russian-Giant-Bomber-Title

It was intended for Stalinist propaganda purposes and was equipped with a powerful radio set called “Voice from the sky” (“Голос с неба”, Golos s neba), printing machinery, library, radiostations, photographic laboratory, and a film projector with sound for showing movies in flight. For the first time in aviation history, this aircraft was equipped with a ladder, which would fold itself and become a part of the floor.

Vasily_kuptsov,_Maxim_Gorky_ANT-20,_1934

Also, for the first time in aviation history, the aircraft used not only direct current, but alternating current of 120 volts, as well. The aircraft could be disassembled and transported by railroad if needed. The aircraft set several carrying capacity world records and is also the subject of a 1934 painting by Vasily Kuptsov, in the collection of the Russian Museum at St. Petersburg.

10. Dornier Do X

Do X

Role

Long-range airliner, flying boat

Manufacturer

Dornier

Designer

Dr. Claudius Dornier

First flight

12 July 1929

Primary user

Deutsche Luft Hansa

Number built

3

The Dornier Do X was the largest, heaviest, and most powerful flying boat in the world when it was produced by the Dornier company of Germany in 1929. First conceived by Dr. Claudius Dornier in 1924, planning started in late 1925 and after over 240,000 work hours it was completed in June 1929. During the years between the two World Wars, only the Russian Tupolev ANT-20 Maxim Gorki landplane of a few years later was physically larger, but at 53 metric tons maximum takeoff weight it was not as heavy as the Do X’s 56 tonnes.

Was Deutschland an Reparationen gleistet hat ! Ein interessanter Ueberblick über die bisher geleisteten Sachlieferungen Deutschlands auf Reparations-Conto. Das grösste Flugboot der Welt auf Reparationsconto. Das Schwesterschiff der "Do X", welches an Italien abgeliefert wurde.

The Do X was financed by the German Transport Ministry and in order to circumvent conditions of the Treaty of Versailles, which forbade any aircraft exceeding set speed and range limits to be built by Germany after World War I, a specially designed plant was built at Altenrhein, on the Swiss portion of Lake Constance.While the type was popular with the public, a lack of commercial interest and a number of non-fatal accidents prevented more than three examples from being built.

Das Riesenflugboot "Do X" startet zum ersten Europa- und Amerika-Flug! Die Maschinenzentrale, das Herz der "Do X", von welcher aus die zwölf Motoren geleitet werden.

The Do X was a semi-cantilever monoplane. The Do X had an all-duralumin hull, with wings composed of a steel-reinforced duralumin framework covered in heavy linen fabric, covered with aluminum paint. It was initially powered by twelve 391 kW (524 hp) Siemens-built Bristol Jupiter radial engines (six tractor propellers and six pushers), mounted in six tower nacelles on the wing. The nacelles were joined by an auxiliary wing whose purpose was to stabilize the mountings.

Das Riesenflugboot "Do X" startet zum ersten Europa- und Amerika-Flug! Die riesige Motorenanlage des Flugbootes "Do X" mit den 12 Jupiter-Curtis-Wright-Motoren in einer Gesamtstärke von 6.600 P.S., welche dem Flugzeug eine Stundengeschwindkeit von über 200 km. geben.

The air-cooled Jupiter engines were prone to overheating and proved to only be able to lift the Do X to an altitude of 425 m (1,400 ft). The engines were supervised by an engineer, who also controlled the throttle. The pilot would ask the engineer to adjust the power, in a manner similar to that used on maritime vessels. After completing 103 flights in 1930, the Do X was refitted with 455 kW (610 hp) Curtiss V-1570 “Conqueror” water-cooled 12-cylinder inline engines.

PqOK4w7

Only then was it able to reach the altitude of 500 m (1,650 ft) necessary to cross the Atlantic. Dr. Dornier designed the flying boat to carry 66 passengers on long-distance flights or 100 passengers on short flights. The Flugschiff (“flying ship”), as it was called, was launched for its first test flight on 12 July 1929, with a crew of 14. In order to satisfy skeptics, on its 70th test flight on 21 October there were 169 on board of which 150 were passengers (mostly production workers and their families, and a few journalists), ten were aircrew and nine were “stowaways” who did not hold tickets.

x004-3959-Do-XLG

The flight set a new world record for the number of persons carried on a single flight, a record that was not broken for 20 years. After a takeoff run of 50 seconds the Do X slowly climbed to an altitude of only 200 m (650 ft). As a result of its size, passengers were asked to crowd together on one side or the other to help make turns. It flew for 40 minutes (Flug Revue claims it was the 42nd flight and lasted 53 minutes, and historical film shows “fliegt mit 170 personen”) at a maximum speed of 170 km/h (105 mph) before finally landing on Lake Constance.

Three Do Xs were constructed in total: the original operated by Dornier, and two other machines based on orders from Italy — the X2, named Umberto Maddalena (registered I-REDI), and X3, named Alessandro Guidoni (registered I-ABBN). The Italian variants were essentially identical to the original with the exception of being slightly larger and the powerplant and engine mounts. Dornier claimed the X2 was the largest aircraft in the world at that time. Each was powered by Fiat A-22R V12 water-cooled engines, with the six engine mounts being covered by a streamlined fairing.

The Do X2 entered service in August 1931, and the X3 followed in May, 1932. Both were initially based at the seaplane station at La Spezia, on the Ligurian Sea, and reassigned to various other bases during their service. Italy’s Do X3 Alessandro Guidoni, one of the three Do Xs built.Both orders originated with SANA, then the Italian state airline, but were requisitioned and used by the Italian Air Force primarily for prestige flights and public spectacles.

After plans for a first-class passenger service (Genoa-Gibraltar) were deemed unfeasible, the X2 and X3 were used for officer training cruises, aeronaval maneuvers, and publicity flights. In an accident identical to that of Lufthansa’s Do X1a, the Do X2 lost her tail section in a botched landing only one month later. After scaling back flights and crew complements during 1934, they were mothballed at Marina di Pisa in 1935, and broken up for scrap in 1937.

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