Thursday 8 December 2016

World's largest plane touches down in Shannon for a pit-stop

David Kearns

Published 13/04/2015 | 02:30

12/4/2015 REPRO FREE
The worlds largest jet has made a fuelling stop at Shannon Airport.
The Antonov An-225 Mriya touched down shortly before 3am Sunday morning and remained at Shannon Airport until 22.00.
The Antonov 225 ?Mriya?, meaning ?Dream?, was designed and built by the Antonov Design Bureau in the Ukraine and first flew on December 21st 1988.
Pic Sean Curtin Photo.
12/4/2015 REPRO FREE The worlds largest jet has made a fuelling stop at Shannon Airport. The Antonov An-225 Mriya touched down shortly before 3am Sunday morning and remained at Shannon Airport until 22.00. The Antonov 225 ?Mriya?, meaning ?Dream?, was designed and built by the Antonov Design Bureau in the Ukraine and first flew on December 21st 1988. Pic Sean Curtin Photo.

Thousands of people descended on Shannon Airport to catch a glimpse of the world's largest aircraft, the Antonov 225.

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The giant plane, which was built to carry the then-Soviet Union's space shuttle between launch sites, touched down for a transit stop shortly before 3am, having left the US.

It has a wing span wider than the pitch in Croke Park.

Despite the early hour, hundreds of plane spotters gathered to witness it coming into land.

By yesterday evening, their numbers had swelled to several thousand.

"There were literally thousands of people here to see the aircraft," said an airport spokesperson.

The Antonov requires a runway of between 3,000m and 3,500m to take off - making Shannon the only airport in Ireland capable of hosting it.

Irish Independent

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