Below is a list of the largest Cargo
Aircraft by length, wingspan and load in
tonnes. The tonne, or metric ton (U.S.)
is a unit of mass equal to 1,000 kg
(2,204.62262 lb) or approximately the
mass of one cubic metre of water at four
Hercules, length 218 ft,
wingspan 320 ft.
The Hughes H-4 Hercules (Spruce
Goose) was a prototype heavy
transport aircraft built by the
Hughes Aircraft company. The
aircraft made its only short flight
on the 2nd of November 1947. It had
to be built from wood because of
wartime raw material restrictions
on the use of aluminum.
An-225, length 275 ft, wingspan
290 ft, load 250 tonnes.
The An-225 is a transport aircraft built
by the Antonov Design Bureau of the USSR.
It is the world's largest fixed wing
aircraft that first flew in 1988. The
aircraft was built to transport the
Orbiter, the Russian equivalent of
the U.S. Space Shuttle.
The Antonov An-225 is now used
to transport large loads for
companies around the world. There
is only one of the aircraft still
length 240 ft, wingspan 261 ft, load 150
The Airbus A380 is a double deck, wide
body, four engine aircraft built by the
European corporation Airbus. As the
largest passenger airliner in the world,
the A380 first flew on the 27th April
2005 from Toulouse in France, and set off
on its first commercial flight on the
25th October 2007 from Singapore to
Sydney with Singapore Airlines.
An-124, length 226 ft, wingspan
240 ft, load 150 tonnes.
The Antonov An-124 Ruslan was the largest
aircraft in production from 1986 until
the Antonov An-225 entered service in
1988. Over forty are in service.
The An-124 is similar to the
American Lockheed C-5 Galaxy, but
with a 25% larger payload. Up to
150 tonnes can be carried in a
military version, along with 88
passengers in an upper deck.
length 250 ft, wingspan 224 ft, load 134
The Boeing 747 is a wide body commercial
airliner, often referred to as a Jumbo
Jet. It is one of the world's most famous
aircraft, the first widebody aircraft
ever produced. The first 747s were about
two and a half times larger than other
commercial aircraft of the late
First flown commercially in
1970, the 747 held the passenger
capacity record for 37 years.
The freight version entered
service soon after the passenger
airliner. A 747 was also converted
to transport the U.S. Space
length 247 ft, wingspan 222 ft, load 122
The Lockheed C-5 Galaxy is a large,
military transport aircraft designed for
heavy airlifts over long distances, and
carry oversized cargo. The C-5 Galaxy has
been operated by the United States Air
Force since 1969.
There are no more C-5 Galaxy's
to be built. Many have to be
upgraded to extend their service
life, and many will be replaced by
the U.S. C-17 Globemaster III, or
Airbus A380 freighters.
length 190 ft, wingspan 211 ft, load 80
The Antonov An-22 was the world's largest
aircraft from entering service in 1967,
until the American C-5 Galaxy entered
service in 1969. Powered by four contra
rotating turboprops, the design is the
world's largest turboprop powered
aircraft. A prototype was flown at the
1965 Paris Air Show.
About 45 were still in service
in the mid-1990s with the Russian
Air Force, but are being replaced
by the larger Antonov An-124. As of
2004, 8 have been involved in
accidents with a 83 fatalities.
III, length 174 ft, wingspan 169
ft, load 77 tonnes.
The Boeing (formerly McDonnell Douglas)
C-17 Globemaster III is a military
transport aircraft used by the United
States Air Force from the 1980s.