The Airlander 10 by Hybrid Air Vehicles, The World’s Largest Airplane
By: Rod Washington
The Airlander 10, built by British manufacturer Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV) was originally developed as the HAV 304, a hybrid airship designed as a mix of an helium airship with auxiliary wing and tail surfaces.
Originally built for the United States Army‘s Long Endurance Multi-intelligence Vehicle (LEMV) program, HAV 304 made its maiden flight took place in 2012 at Lakehurst, New Jersey. In 2013, the LEMV project was eventually cancelled by the US Army.
HAV reacquired the airship and brought it back to England.
The airship was reassembled and modified for civilian use, HAV redesignated the 304 as the Airlander 10.
The plane has a luxurious appearance in the interior. In its present civilian form, the Airlander 10 can ferry up to 100 passengers between major cities, producing a significantly smaller carbon footprint than a typical passenger jet. The Airlander 10 is over 300 feet in length, with a wingspan of 143 feet and has a maximum cruise speed of 92 mph. The craft has a range of over 400 miles.
Another interesting fact about the Airlander 10 is that it will not rely on conventional airports for operations, it will utilize smaller airfields for take offs and landings.
Twitter use have given a nickname to Airlander 10 because of a photo of the craft in a hanger. Many have called it “The Bum,” for obvious reasons.
A production run of the Airlander 10 is now planned for 2025.
Rod is a blogger, writer, filmmaker, photographer, daydreamer who likes to cook. Rod produces and directs the web series, CUPIC: Diary of an Investigator. He is also the editor, producer and administrator of TNC Network.