Stratolaunch Systems Corporation is an American space transportation venture developing a new air launch to orbit system, with its corporate headquarters located in Seattle, Washington. Stratolaunch has become the World’s Biggest Airplane in history to complete successfully its first test flight on last Saturday.
Stratolaunch has a wingspan of 385 feet and weighs 220 tons. It has two fuselages and 28 wheels and is powered by six Boeing 747 engines. The aircraft took off for its first flight from Mojave Desert, California. According to Stratolaunch, the plane’s systems “ran like a watch” and that the aircraft landed “on the mark” after a few low passes.
The Airplane is so large its wingspan is longer than a football field, or about 1.5 times that of an Airbus A380. It hit a top speed of 304 kilometers per hour (189 mph) and reached an altitude of 17,000 feet or 5,182 meters.
The World’s Biggest Airplane is manufactured by an American company called Stratolaunch Systems Corporation. The project was first announced in 2011 by Microsoft co-founder Paul G. Allen and Scaled Composites founder Burt Rutan. The two joined hands previously in the successful development of SpaceShipOne.
According to the company the World’s Biggest Airplane flew for about two and a half hours, “What a fantastic first flight,” said Jean Floyd, CEO of Stratolaunch. “Today’s flight furthers our mission to provide a flexible alternative to ground-launched systems,” further he added. Stratolaunch did not take questions during the press call and made no mention of what comes next for the aircraft.