P. DUMAS / EURELIOS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY P. DUMAS / EURELIOS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Beluga cargo aircraft. The first built Beluga aircraft (Airbus Super Transporter A300-600 ST) taxiing at Toulouse, France, after its first transport flight from Germany. It is one of the world's largest transport aircraft. The name Beluga derives from the Beluga whale which has a hump at the front of its head. This twin engined aircraft is converted from the Airbus A300-600 R. Above the underfloor cockpit is the world's largest main cargo door. The front loading bay, 17 metres high, can be loaded in 45 minutes and can fit two helicopters or two Airbus A340 wings. The Beluga can transport a 45.5 ton payload to a 900 nautical mile range. It enters service in 1996.
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