The cost for a proposed fleet of 28 VH71 Kestrel helicopters was estimated at a record $13.2 billion (£8.7 billion), making it the most expensive helicopter in the world. The programme was stopped in February 2009 for the re-evaluation of different cost options.
The aircraft with the highest standard maximum take-off weight is the Antonov An-225 “Mriya” (Dream) originally built at 600 tonnes (1.32 million lb). In 2000-2001 its floor was strengthened resulting in an increased maximum take-off weight of 640 tonnes (1.41 million lb). A heavy-lift version of the standard Antonov An-124 “Ruslan” cargo plane, only two of these behemoths were ever built.
The fastest remote-controlled jet-powered model aircraft (RC) is a turbine-powered airplane created by Niels Herbrich (Germany) which reached a speed of 706.97 km/h (439.29 mph) at the WLP Ballenstedt airfield in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany, on 14 September 2013.
A Boeing 777-200LR Worldliner flew 11,664 nautical miles (21,601.7 km or 13,422.7 miles) non-stop and without refuelling from Hong Kong to London, UK from 9 to 10 November 2005 in 22 hr 42 min, the longest flight ever by an unmodified commercial aircraft. The 777-200LR is powered by two General Electric GE90-115Bs, the world’s most powerful jet engines. The first aircraft were delivered to customer airlines early in 2006.In service, the 777-200LR can carry 301 passengers and baggage up to 9,420 nautical miles (17,445 kilometres) when fitted with three optional fuel tanks in the cargo area.
The Cessna Aircraft Company of Wichita, Kansas, USA, has been the most productive aerospace company, with total production of 192,991 aircraft through the end of 2009. Company founder Clyde Cessna built and flew his first aeroplane in 1911.
The largest banner flown by an airplane measured 218.03 m² (2,346.85 ft²) and was flown by Edmund Löbbers (Germany) in Rheine, Germany, on 10 July 2010. The aircraft used in the attempt was a Remos G3-600. Edmund flew the banner for 13 minutes. The banner weighed 19.8 kg (43.65 lbs).
The longest non-stop flight by any aircraft was achieved by Steve Fossett (USA) who flew 42,469.4 km (26,389.3 miles) in the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer airplane. Fossett took-off from the Kennedy Space Centre, Florida, USA on 8 February 2006 and landed 76 hours, 45 mins later in Bournemouth, Dorset, UK on 11 February 2006; having beaten the previous record, held by the Breitling Orbiter 3 balloon, by 165.4 km (1,02.8 miles) and with only 90 kg (200 lb) of fuel remaining from an initial load of 8,210 kg (18,100 lb).Fossett was due to arrive at Kent International, UK, but due to a huge electrical malfunction, he landed earlier in Bournemouth.
The final distance flown was 19,880 nautical miles. UTC stands for Coordinated Universal Time and is the same as GMT.
Take-off / landing times:
Fossett took-off from the Kennedy Space Centre, Florida, USA at 12.22 UTC on 8 February 2006 and landed 76 hours, 45 mins later at 17:07 UTC in Bournemouth, Dorset, UK on 11 February 2006.
The Evergreen International Aviation Company of the USA has modified a Boeing 747-300 widebody aircraft into a fire fighting aircraft. It has a capacity of 20,500 US gallons (77,600 litres) more than 8 times that of the commonly used P-3A Orion aircraft and is the largest fire fighting aircraft in the world. It was first used operationally in July 2009 to fight huge fires in Cuenca, Spain.
The longest journey by powered paraglider is 9,132 km (5,674.35 mi) and was achieved by Miroslav Oros (Czech Republic), flying throughout the Czech Republic, starting in Sazená and ending in Lipovå-lázn, between 1 April 2011 and 30 June 2011.
The smallest spy plane in existence is the palm-sized Black Widow, developed by Aerovironment of Monrovia, California, USA, for possible reconnaissance use by ground combat troops. It has a wingspan of 15.24 cm. (6 in.), weighs just 80 g. (2.8 oz.) and carries a tiny color video camera weighing 2 g. (0.07 oz.). The Black Widow has a speed of 50 km./h. (30 m.p.h.), a maximum range of 2km. (1.24 miles) and can stay airborne for 30 min. Although it has an autopilot, it will typically be controlled by a pilot navigating by live video relayed from its on-board camera. The entire ground control system and launcher fits into a briefcase-sized box. The solid wings are manufactured from lightweight expanded polystyrene foam and propulsion is provided by a battery-powered electric motor.