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Largest aircraft "ROC": world's largest aircraft weighting almost half million pounds, take's off in California... [know it's features]

Image credit: theverge
We all have heard about the largest aircrafts on earth like Hughes Hercules, Antonov Mirya, Boeing, Antonov, Lockheed, etc and of course the most successful "Airbus". But here's a new twist...

An American based space transportation company Stratolaunch systems has recently performed the first take-off of their "Scaled Composites Model 351 Stratolaunch".


So here are some of its iconic features:


  • Dimensions:
  1. Length: 238 ft (73 m)
  2. Wingspan: 385 ft (117 m)
  3. Height: 50 ft (15 m)

  • Load Capacity:
  1. Empty weight: 500,000 lb 
  2. Gross weight: 750,000 lb with no external payload
  3. Max takeoff weight: 1,300,000 lb
  4. external payload: 550,000 lb 

  • Howz the speed?
  1. Powerplant: 6 × Pratt & Whitney PW4056 turbofan, 56,750 lbf thrust each
  2. Maximum speed: 461 kn; 853 km/h 
  3. Range: 1,000 nmi (1,151 mi; 1,852 km) radius
  4. Ferry range: 2,500 nmi (2,877 mi; 4,630 km)

And it has grabbed the title of the largest aeroplane on earth in no time. The newcomer is owned by Stratolaunch Systems, jointly owned by Paul Allen [co-founder Microsoft] and Burt Rutan [Founder Scaled Composites].


Image credit: SpaceFlight Insider
Made as an aircraft to carry Air-launch-to-orbit rockets, the wonder is designed by Burt Rutan and manufactured by Scaled Composites itself. Earlier too Stratolaunch systems have created the "SpaceShipOne"...

The aircraft has 6 engines in total and it's wings are longer than a football ground!!!

The work on it was started in 2011, the year in which Stratolaunch systems was formed. As per earlier plans, it was supposed to launch SpaceX's "Falcon 9 Air". 

But Elon's SpaceX parted the ways with Stratolaunch a year later after beginning.

And finally, the final product was all set to take its first flight and it has turned successful eventually. It had its first flight on 13th April 2019 from the Mojave Air And Space Port.


Image credit: stratolaunch
In its first flight, it had the airtime of 2hr and 29mins. In this timespan, it was able to reach at 15,000 ft altitude and 305 km/hr speed!!!

And its first rocket launch test is planned in 2020. 

It is basically a twin-fuselage plane, having 1,300,000 pounds take-off weight and 550,000 pounds payload.

The Gigantic Aircraft is dubbed as "Roc" after the mythical middle east bird roc. Its believed that the bird was capable to carry an Elephant alone!!!


Image credit: mythologicalbeastiesandco


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