The Airlander rises again
11 / 05 / 2017
Hybrid Air Vehicles’ Airlander 10 Airship made a successful flight on 10 May, following its accident last August.
The £25m vehicle, described as the world’s largest aircraft, sustained cockpit damage in a heavy landing at Cardington Airfield in the UK Midlands on 24 August, just days after making it maiden flight, fortunately without serious injuries to the crew.
Developer HAV said: “We are delighted to announce a successful flight of the Airlander 10 this evening. All objectives of the planned flight were accomplished and the aircraft is now safely back at its masting site. The Airlander was taken off its mooring mast at 17:20 and took off at 17:28. It flew for a total of 180 minutes before landing at 20:15 and was secured safely on the mast at 20:20.”
HAV said that the flight test programme would now resume and the aircraft will perform more tasks and be permitted to fly further away from its base.
HAV, which took over the Airlander project from the US military in 2012, promosed that the giant new craft would “ultimately…break the mould of aviation”, with a huge number of roles including cargo transportation to remote areas as ell as search and rescue, border control, security and filming.
One of the claimed benefits of the Airlander is that it can control its own buoyancy, avoiding the need for fixed mooring sites and giving it ‘go anywhere’ capability.