| 3.8°C Dublin

World’s largest aircraft, the Antonov 225, touches down at Shannon Airport

Close

The Antonov AN-225 on the Shannon Airport runway. Photo: Arthur Ellis

The Antonov AN-225 on the Shannon Airport runway. Photo: Arthur Ellis

The Antonov AN-225 on the Shannon Airport runway. Photo: Arthur Ellis

The world’s largest aircraft, the Antonov AN-225, touched down at Shannon Airport this afternoon from China carrying a consignment of cargo.

Shannon Airport is the only airport in Ireland capable of accommodating the Antonov, which stands six-storeys high and weighs the same as nine 737 Boeing jets, as it has the longest runway in Ireland at 3.2km.

The giant plane has landed at Shannon five times in the recent past, the last time was on June 10, 2020, when it carried 6,249 boxes of PPE - the single largest consignment to be flown into Ireland on a single flight.

It is currently the only Antonov AN-225 operational in the world. The six-engined, 32-wheeled behemoth has a cargo hold big enough to store 50 cars.

“With a wingspan wider than the Croke Park pitch and, from nose to tail, over one and a half times the length of an Olympic swimming pool, the Antonov 225 stands alone as the largest plane ever made. It is wonderful to see the plane flying in commercial cargo, a further sign of a recovery in our economy,” Niall Maloney, Shannon Airport operations and commercial director said.

“We love having the Antonov here. It’s an incredible aircraft and when you see it on the taxiway here, it dwarfs anything else on the airfield. When you take its enormous size into perspective, it’s almost unbelievable that it can get up into the skies, let alone be as graceful when it’s up there. The plane also attracts significant interest with aviation enthusiasts from around the country who travel here in large numbers to view this unique aircraft,” Mr Maloney said.

The Antonov is due to depart Shannon at 9am on Wednesday.


Daily Digest Newsletter

Get ahead of the day with the morning headlines at 7.30am and Fionnán Sheahan's exclusive take on the day's news every afternoon, with our free daily newsletter.

This field is required


Most Watched





Privacy