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World's longest aircraft takes off then crashes

Cartoon drawing of an airship

The world's longest aircraft, the Airlander 10, had finally made its maiden voyage, after the first attempt was abandoned due to a technical fault, but crashed on its second flight just days later.

Part airship part plane, the Airlander 10 cost £million and measures 92 metres long and 43.5 wide. It is, therefore, more than 15 metres longer than the biggest passenger jets. The aircraft has caught the attention of the media, not only for its size but for its shape. The Airlander 10 has been nicknamed 'The flying bum' owing to the shape of the rear of the aircraft.

The aircraft was initially dreamt up by the US who were going to use it for surveillance, but after cutbacks the plan was shelved.

That was until British firm Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV) stepped in and revived plans in May 2015.

The massive aircraft will be able to stay airborne for 5 days during manned flights and the HAV state that the aircraft could be used for a number of functions in the future.

The company is planning on making 10 of them a year by 2021 and they could be used for anything from surveillance to passenger travel. The maiden flight was postponed once and had been met with much fanfare. However, just days after its first flight the Airlander crashed on its second.

It is unknown why it crashed or if the plane sustained any damage but the all the crew were uninjured.