New Stratolaunch Photos Show World’s Largest Aircraft

Carrier aircraft cabin and wing (Credit: Stratolaunch)

Stratolaunch has revamped its website with some new photos of its gigantic carrier aircraft under construction at the Mojave Air and Space Port.

Carrier aircraft cabin (Credit: Stratolaunch)

The twin fuselage airplane will be the largest aircraft in the world, with a 385-foot wing span. Powered by six Boeing 747 engines, the aircraft will have a payload of more than 500,000 lbs. (226,796 kg) and an operational range of approximately 2,000 nautical miles (3,715 km).

Aircraft undercarriage (Credit: Stratolaunch)

The Stratolaunch aircraft is designed to air launch launch vehicles. The company has an agreement with Orbital ATK to use its Pegasus small-satellite booster.

Carrier aircraft with Pegasus boosters (Credit: Stratolaunch)

In March, billionaire backer Paul Allen has said he hopes the carrier aircraft will make its first flight test by the end of the year.

Carrier aircraft tail (Credit: Stratolaunch)

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  • windbourne

    pegasus is not a big deal, esp sine they already have the L-1011.
    So, the question is, when will they get something useful?

  • Paul Buff

    Would be something to behold when it flies…perhaps it can work together with Virgin Galactic…

  • JamesG

    But not a salvo of three on one flight. Not sure how practical that is, but it’s got the cool factor.

  • Smokey_the_Bear

    To quote the movie Deuce Bigalow “That’s a huge bitch!”

  • Lee

    Which “747 engines” power this? There have been a lot of different engines on the 747 over its production run…

  • mattmcc80

    Assuming they’re still using the engines from the two 747s they bought in 2011, they’re the Pratt & Whitney PW4056.

  • JamesG

    The mind boggles at the amount of work those pictures represent. All for a speculative one off bird.

  • Eric Scoles

    Not to mention potential for larger, heavier boosters. Obviously, we’ll see if it pans out. More diversity in the launch ecology is probably a good thing at this point, though I’d like to see more heavy lift capability….

  • very stupid idea

  • A_J_Cook

    I’m old enough to remember when they used to say that about Elon Musk and the Falcon 9!… : )

  • Charles

    Thunderbird’s are Go.

  • publiusr

    I don’t agree with that. They do however need to work with Virgin and provide a sub-orbital spaceplane with more seats.