Flying High: The Aircraft Quiz



By: Staff

5 Min Quiz

Image: AirshowStuffVideos via Youtube

About This Quiz

Manned flight has altered the course of humanity. From breaking the sound barrier, to flying around the world on a single tank of fuel, humans have used airplanes to push the boundaries of exploration and limits of endurance.

Aerospace history is filled with jaw-dropping statistics and amazing personalities. Did you know that two different unrelated pilots with the surname, Yeager, broke separate aircraft records?

Do you know that the most mass-produced airplane in the world isn't a commercial jet? Do you know what it is? Do you know what metal you can't bring on an airplane because it might react with the aluminum? 

Don't be surprised at the amount of fuel Boeing 747 can hold, or how wide the wingspan of a Dreamlifter cargo plane is. The cruising speed of a commercial jetliner might even surprise you! From the Wright brothers to Dick Rutan, do you know how many major historical figures were involved with bringing air travel into the modern age?

Find out how much you know about the aircraft of the world. If you're a true aircraft whiz, then this quiz should be easy! 

Which fighter jet had vertical takeoff capability?

The AV-8B Harrier II was the second generation of this innovative fighter family. The idea was that it could land and takeoff without a full runway, which made it more useful for the military.


The F-111 Aardvark was deployed heavily during which war?

It was used for electronic warfare; spying and bomb runs during the Vietnam War. They were also successfully used against armored vehicles and tanks in the Gulf War during Operation Desert Storm.


Which single-engine aircraft company has sold more planes than any other?

The founder of Cessna built his own plane and piloted it for the first time in 1911. The Cessna Aircraft Company was founded in 1927.


What was the only British fighter to be produced throughout the entirety of World War II?

The Spitfire was one of the fastest fighters of the era. It wasn't actually retired from use until 1961.


What is the B-2 Spirit better known as?

The Stealth Bombers, over the course of their production, averaged over $2 billion each. They were produced from 1987-2000.


Which model is the longest continuously produced military aircraft?

The fundamental design of the Lockheed C-130 Hercules is so solid that it has survived several makeover attempts. It has been produced for over 60 years.


The Wright brothers flew the first engine-powered airplane in what year?

Their maiden flight in 1903 went about 120 feet (37 meters). The plane was mainly constructed of spruce wood and muslin, and used a gasoline-powered engine.


Approximately how long does the oxygen last in a plane's emergency masks?

The oxygen lasts 15 minutes. This is normally enough time to get the plane to a low-enough altitude that there is no need for additional oxygen.


In the 1930s a DC-3 could cross America with how many stops for refueling?

You could cross America and stop only three times to refuel. Before the DC-3 you might have to stop a whopping 15 times before your journey's end.


What is the approximate cruising speed of a commercial jet?

At 560 miles per hour, it's no wonder that flying is so much faster than driving.


How long did it take the supersonic jet, Concorde, to fly from Paris to New York?

It took about three and a half hours, and the jet's maximum speed was more than 1,300 miles per hour (2,092 kilometers per hour.)


In total, how much wiring is there in a wide-body Boeing 747?

They are essentially flying computers, with their 150 miles of wiring. The weight of the wiring actually makes up an enormous part of the overall weight of an airplane, which has a lot of influence on mechanical design.


What sort of plane did Chuck Yeager fly to break the sound barrier?

He topped 700 miles per hour. Unsurprisingly, the engine burned-out, and Yeager had to glide to a landing on a dry lake bed.


How many people died in the most deadly aircraft accident?

When two 747s collided on the runway in Tenerife, Spain, 583 people died, making it the deadliest aviation accident in history. Amazingly, 61 passengers from one of the airplanes survived.


Which substance is not allowed on flights because it can damage a plane's aluminum construction?

Mercury can cause significant damage to a plane. It essentially degrades the aluminum that makes up most of the plane's structure.


What is roughly the maximum takeoff weight of the Dreamlifter cargo plane?

The bulbous plane has a maximum takeoff weight of 803,001 pounds, and the interior space to accommodate huge items. The width of the fuselage is over 27 feet.


Which fighter jet is often called the "Viper" by its pilots?

More than 25 countries have purchased F-16s. It's been in use since 1978.


For roughly how long was the Lockheed SR-71 the world's fastest aircraft?

It was the fastest aircraft for about 40 years. One pilot flew the plane 15,000 miles in just over 10 hours.


Which is considered one of the most successful fighter planes in history?

To date, the F-15 Eagle has never been defeated in aerial combat--at least the United States hasn't admitted it. A number of countries have claimed to have shot them down.


Which country's air force has the last flying F-14 Tomcats?

F-14 Tomcats were first exported to Iran from the U.S. back in 1976. They are still in use by the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force.


Boeing's Dreamliner gets what percentage better fuel efficiency over the Boeing 767, which it replaced?

It gets 20 percent better fuel efficiency, which is considered an evolution in commercial flight. It can hold up to 335 passengers.


The Boeing 747's wingspan measures how many feet?

That's 75 feet longer than the distance of the Wright brothers' first flight. The first 747 was built in 1969.


The first Boeing Dreamliners were plagued by which infamous problem?

The entire U.S. fleet was grounded temporarily until Boeing fixed the battery-fire issue. They were grounded for almost half a year in 2013.


Which plane recorded the highest speeds in history?

The North American X-15 hit more than 4,200 miles per hour, which is about Mach 6.7. It obtained maximum speed on October 3, 1967, while piloted by William J. "Pete" Knight.


Ballistic Recovery Systems is most famous for creating what product?

The whole-plane parachutes are credited with saving nearly 400 lives as of February 2018. They were first deployed in 1983.


Roughly how many gallons of fuel can a Boeing 747 carry?

The tanks are so large, that a full-grown man can walk and crawl inside of them.


Boeing spent roughly how much money developing its landmark Dreamliner?

Boeing spent about $30 billion. In spite of production delays, the aircraft has been snapped up by airline companies.


Roughly what is the likelihood of surviving a plane crash?

Believe it or not, the survivability is around 95%--and sitting near the rear of the plane yields higher rates of survival than sitting in the first few rows.


In what year did the Voyager fly around the world without landing or refueling?

The 1986 trip covered more than 25,000 miles (40,234 kilometers) and took nine days. It was piloted by Dick Rutan and Jeana Yeager (amazingly, of no relation to Chuck Yeager!)


The Cessna 172 Skyhawk was first produced in what year?

More than 40,000 have been sold since 1956. Cessna 172s are the most popular aircraft in aviation history.


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